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Doom II Dark World

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(Boom-compatible sourceport required to run)


These 11 maps are patterned after the first set of 11 levels in Doom II. The concept for this mapset was inspired by the Dark World levelsets from Super Meat Boy: levels with the same broad layout as the original they're based on, and with a familiar look, but with different aesthetics and a much higher challenge factor. The chief mapping guideline we followed was that if a player knew their way around the original map, then they should never get lost playing one of these. The goal is to provide longtime Doom II veterans with a fresh experience traversing maps which feel both instantly familiar and new and challenging at the same time.


This set is equal parts creative endeavor and learning experience. With the exception of Grymmoire, the mappers in this project have few to no publicly released maps under their belt.


The project took a lot longer than it should have taken to get to this point. It started in 2016 when Hellser set himself the challenge of recreating MAP02 from memory. The concept for the mapset was set shortly afterward, and what followed were several short spurts of creative work punctuating months of distraction at a time. Within those two years, the mapping meme of recreating Entryway from memory came and went, and the project may have lost most of what little originality it had at first. It should still be fun to play, though lacking in novelty.


MAP11 was our finish line for release, but it isn't set in stone that we're going to leave it there. If this mapping concept resonates with anyone else, get with one of us about trying one of the later maps. We'd love to have this thing up to the full 32, but getting there ourselves might take the rest of our natural lives to do those maps justice. :P


The maps are in Boom format, and tested with ZDoom v2.8.1, GZDoom v3.1.0, PRBoom+ v2.5.1.4, and Eternity v3.42.03. Demos for PRBoom+ are included in the WAD.


NOTE: The maps were designed around vanilla's movement and aiming restrictions. You won't break things too badly with freelook, but you will sequence break like mad through jumping or crouching.


MAP01: Gateway, by Trance
MAP02: Underhells, by Hellser
MAP03: Anguish, by Hellser
MAP04: The Heart, by InsanityBringer
MAP05: The Wasteyard, by Hellser
MAP06: The Rise And Fall, by Trance
MAP07: Dead, by Grymmoire
MAP08: Deceive and Seduce, by Hellser
MAP09: The Bloodpit, by InsanityBringer
MAP10: Spawning Pool, by Hellser
MAP11: Cocytus, by Trance


Tall skies were grabbed from the Skulltag Resource Pack.


Download link:



Idgames link: https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/doom2/Ports/d-f/d2dw









Edited by Trance : idgames finally updated with our WAD

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i'm glad you just happened to have this 14-year-old never-been-used account sitting around to release this project with


pictures look frickin neato and I very much look forward to trying this out c:

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Just as a heads-up, a streamer friend of mine will be playing this mapset tonight at 8 EST (about 7 hours from the time of this post). Tune in if your backlog is overwhelming but you still want to see the maps.




If y'all find anything strange or broken about these maps don't hesitate to let us know about it. The couple of days before release were sort of a blur as we got all our pieces packed up into one WAD, so we may have missed some things.

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Excellent initiative! I am all for projects that seek to improve upon vanilla maps.


Also, I am much better at Doom than at Super Meat Boy. :P

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OP updated with the idgames link, for anyone waiting for that. If you'd like to leave a review, that would be a good spot for it.

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Okay, I played the first few levels. So far, I am really enjoying.


However, if I have one criticism to make, it is that for a mapset designed to be harder than its inspiration, it is ultimately just as easy; sure, you encounter tougher monsters and in higher quantity, but the maps I played are about as generous in terms of health, weapons and ammunition as their vanilla counterparts.

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We took into consideration of unskilled players attempting to try these maps. A recent play through of this mapset on a stream not made by anyone from the mapping team ended up with them dying quite a bit. But thanks for your feedback! I think we can adapt this information for a future version.

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I understand, but the thing is, I always play on Ultra-Violence. I do not quite see unskilled players going for the hardest setting right off the bat, unless they have a death wish - figuratively speaking.


And yes, I called Ultra-Violence the hardest setting, because I consider Nightmare! to be more of a gimmick mode than a genuinely higher difficulty level. That is just me, though.

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Jumping around here. Focusing mostly on what I felt was most important. 


03 - Felt there were too many HKs/barons that function mostly as harmless meat in front of you. 


04 - Two viles that warp late behind the "shutters" are just meat because they can't get to you and you can just fight them through the 64-wide doors.


05 - Fun SSG romp, feels like you can roll forward with the SSG and kill everything with each shot without too much stopping. Ending room penalizes aggression because if you skip HKs on the bridge, when you warp back down they'll be towards the near side of where you warp, with two candelabras beside you. Almost got pinned inside there. Seems like a minor thing, but nix candelabras imo.


07 - Would rethink the cyberdemon frantically warping around the center. The teleportation adds no threat at all, just makes it take 3x longer to kill. Was very boring. Get rid of cyb entirely imo. No way to make it work in this layout. Also, the viles prior to this can't path into the outer areas so are harmless. 


08 - Most potential in the set gameplay-wise -- some slaughter-lite gameplay. Hmm, in the room with the pain elementals and lost soul clouds that are released from airborne cubbies, get rid of one of these waves. Repeating this is really dull, especially because you can just hide in the cubbies with BA/soulsphere. Early ammo balance leans too much on bullets if you don't go into the HK/cyb infighting room early. At one point I ended up emptying roughly 250 bullets into some cacos and imps, because I had no shells/rockets. Swap out two start room bullet boxes for a single shellbox imo, no need to hold back on shells.


09 - This map is broken -- I got stuck in the area with the lifts (where each lift leads to a switch that triggers the next lift) adjacent to the triangle room. The door shut again after I reopened it with the switch, and the switch to open the room was S1. I'd rethink the monster placement in this map a lot, honestlyFirst off, there's some dull shotgun plinking against mid-tiers until you get the SSG. Then, when you do have the SSG, the revenants you encounter are all far enough away from the player that the SG/CG are more ammo effective anyway! Those revenants aren't interesting gameplay-wise on those turrets. Put them on ground level somewhere, put shotgunners/chaingunners or something in their place. The closet trap with two PEs and some imps on the other side, near the second green armor, is good. The gameplay in the lava/lift room doesn't work. I hid in a corner and cleared out the meat. Sorry, this map needs to go back to the drawing board. Also don't overlook that a big part of the appeal of "The Pit" is how messy/spammy it is -- it has 238 monsters. 


10 - Monster-blocking lines between the room with the YK/BK doors and outer area with arachnotrons really should go. (A lot easier than "Refueling Base" tbh. What "Refueling Base" has going for it is serious ammo deprivation risks in the absence of foreknowledge. Second best map of the ones I played though -- satisfying HR-lite combat.)



This set has been interesting to poke around in because the visual design is free of many of the modern tropes that can be seen in most releases. So it feels like playing a fresh game, almost, which makes up for the roughness. Gameplay hasn't been my cup of tea, with a few exceptions.

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