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40oz

What devices are best for Doom?

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I do a majority of my stuff on my desktop computer, but I'm not always home and I'd like to be able to work on the big boring menial tasks of Doom editing while I'm away from home. I don't like to use my time at home to test little Doom experiments or manage my files or take screenshots, etc. I want to use my desktop to do the fun stuff that I need a big screen for like mapping and playing.

 

I'm in the market for a new phone and I'd like to do my Doom work with it during my down times when I'm away from home. I see advertisements for tablets that business professionals use like it's the most important thing to conduct their business with, but I doubt they are very efficient for doing the kind of Doom stuff away from home that I would need it for.

I'm not really sure what to get that will fit my needs. I'm getting the feeling that as the internet and technology keeps moving forward, it's on a path that is become more and more unfriendly towards Doom. I'd like to have a handheld device that I can use to make texts and calls, but also double as a personal computer to do my Doom related stuff with when I can't get access to my desktop.

 

Being a Doom fan, I have a lot of needs that aren't met by the common marketing trends. I download and manage a lot of Doom wad files, I get requests to test people's maps, and I like to view maps for mapping inspiration. I don't really want to be in a position where I buy a new phone where the company that makes it wants to put their fingers in all of my stuff, and provide a streamlined and user friendly interface that limits my freedom. Doom is complicated in some ways and it's important to me that the phone doesn't fuck with it just because it doesn't understand it.

 

If I could have it my way, I'd like to have the ability or arrange and sort my wad files, either on the cloud or on the actual device hard drive so that I can download what I want and transfer it directly to my computer to play when I get home. I'd like to be able to play Doom PWADs on the phone, even if the controls are weird. I'd probably play it with nomonsters or notarget so I could view it and take screenshots without having to play it normally, or perhaps view maps from an editor or automap view. 

 

I've had some friends show me their phones but I find it to be severely limited in these particular options most of the time. They also customize their phone to fit their own needs too, so I don't really know what I'm missing most of the time either. 

 

If my primary focus is doing Doom playing and editing with my devices away from my computer, what kind of devices should I look into that provide the best benefits for my needs? Are there portable devices that I can use to run common doom editing programs or good parallels to them? 

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I've never had good experiences with a laptop. Is that what you use?

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Have 2 laptops that are 5+ years old and they still run fine. The only bad thing is keyboard keys starting to knock out of place after third year but it isn't that iffy and can always use an external keyboard. Laptops are the closest you'll get to a PC anyway.

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I don't know if I want to lug it around with me, or leave it in my car. I have a macbook at home which is nice to sit in the living room with but I never feel good about taking it outside of the house.

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I prefer to game on my TI-90 calculator. Sure people laugh... but it still plays DOOM!

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I feel like for Doom you really need a keyboard and mouse to play it properly, or perhaps a gamepad in a pinch. Touch screens are basically awful for playing games on; that's why particular games tend to become popular when someone can devise a very basic game that will work with the touch screen interface (Angry Birds; Plants vs. Zombies; Candy Crush; Flappy Bird, etc.)

 

It is at least possible to get Bluetooth gamepads which you can pair with a phone or tablet, so that's an option. Another alternative is that a lot of higher-end "professional" tablets (like the Microsoft Surface) come with detachable keyboards, so that probably would work better. 

 

One problem might be the software, since Doom source ports keep disappearing from any app stores they're put on. I don't know what options there even are now.

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^

There is gzdoom port for android based phones. I don't know if it's still on google store, but it was free when I downloaded. 

 

For editing and mapping I use laptop, because it's only option for me.

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Posted (edited)

You can get one of those tiny laptops that can't really do anything else than browse the web, but I'm sure they'll run doom just fine.

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1 hour ago, geo said:

I prefer to game on my TI-90 calculator. Sure people laugh... but it still plays DOOM!

NERD!!

 

(Actually, I'm jealous...)

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2 hours ago, fraggle said:

I feel like for Doom you really need a keyboard and mouse to play it properly, or perhaps a gamepad in a pinch. Touch screens are basically awful for playing games on; that's why particular games tend to become popular when someone can devise a very basic game that will work with the touch screen interface (Angry Birds; Plants vs. Zombies; Candy Crush; Flappy Bird, etc.)


I once received a private message from someone requesting me to test their map. For days I couldn't get to my desktop to play it. When I finally had the time, the map was only half finished, and took me a few minutes to play it. I located a few texture misalignments and other little bugs but mostly I didn't have much to say. It felt rude that I made this person wait so many days for such a limited response that they could have gotten from anyone else.

 

I've played Doom enough to be able to look at where monsters are placed and have some sort of an idea of what the gameplay would be like. If I could just take a stroll around the map just to review it, snap a few screenshots, and give the mapper direct feedback on my thoughts, I could be a little more present as a tester in the community. But at this moment, they have to wait a long time just to have 5 minutes of my time to look at their map. 

 

There once was a time where it was a question whether Doom would be compatible with certain devices. There's no question that the devices we have today have to processing power to run Doom very efficiently, but now it's a question of making these devices compatible with Doom.

 

My motivation to continue mapping and developing projects for Doom is still very rich, but I'm being held back because I don't really have the technology that allows me to be as present as I can. I'm not alone in feeling that there's kind of a wall here that needs to be broken down, right?

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I personally do all my Doom stuff on a laptop, but appreciate that they can be a little big for always carrying around.

 

I might suggest getting a half-decent x86/64 tablet, something like this.  As a full-fat Windows machine you can run any source port you like, and it's small enough and light enough to carry around.  Bluetooth a keyboard/mouse or even a controller for playing.  Cheaper than a phone for the same specs too.

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Doom Touch is likely the way to go, but you'll have to sideload the app on Android nowadays (not hard, and I can instruct you). The app lets you pick between an older version of GZDoom, Chocolate, and prBoom and it gives you lots of options for custom mapping out the controls on your touch screen, so it's not hard to get comfy with, even with a touch screen.

For me, I got rid of the standard fire button, and instead set it to fire whenever I tapped my look area twice and held it, so I could seamlessly turn and fire

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3 hours ago, RightField said:

You can get one of those tiny laptops that can't really do anything else than browse the web, but I'm sure they'll run doom just fine.

You mean like the GPD Win? It kinda sorta ran Doom 2016 barely, so Classic Doom shouldn't be an issue. It has a tiny keyboard but it comes with gamepad controls.

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4 hours ago, 40oz said:

My motivation to continue mapping and developing projects for Doom is still very rich, but I'm being held back because I don't really have the technology that allows me to be as present as I can. I'm not alone in feeling that there's kind of a wall here that needs to be broken down, right?

I certainly feel like in the past ~10 years there has been a huge shift in the types of device people are using: people are often using smartphone and tablets now rather than desktop or laptop PCs. The latest iPhones actually have CPUs comparable in performance to laptops. And there are new twists on old devices, like Chromebooks and the Microsoft Surface.

 

At the same time I feel like source port "technology" hasn't really progressed at all. The major source ports are all still targeting the same OSes as they were before, even though Android, iOS and Chrome OS have significant market share now. It's still mostly the case that to play Doom we tell people, "download this Windows .exe". If you're lucky there's a Mac or Linux version too - just like it was back in the early 2000s. The mobile ports for iOS and Android are always "third party" ports done by someone else, and you just have to hope the developers keep them up to date with new releases.

 

Basically if you're on a "mobile device" then you're considered a second class citizen. And yes, I'm as guilty of this with Chocolate Doom as every other source port developer. But it's something I want to try to fix in the near future. Now that Chocolate Doom 3.0 is out, I'm hoping I can find some time to look into it. 

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Posted (edited)

I wish there was even a basic map editor for mobile too friend. But I'm sure that would be a pretty difficult undertaking considering the aforementioned limits of touch controls. A full port of say GZDB is definitely out of the question for example. Personally though I would be just fine with a simple Boom/vanilla compatible editor that just let you do really basic shit shot as long as it can successfully compile maps I probably wouldn't care too much

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I'll second D-Touch as a great thing to look into, though I'll note that its dev, Beloko, has stopped development of D-Touch to move to Delta Touch, which is still in its beta stages. It has a more recent version of Gzdoom and PrBoom+, as well as Chocolate Doom and now Doom Retro as well. Last I checked, Glboom+ hadn't been added yet and there is no demo support yet. However, it is actively being worked on and is the currently developed build of the program, so if I were you I'd pm him here and ask about becoming a tester, or just purchase it on the Google play store, though there is a group thingy to join as a tester so all feedback is in one place, so either way it might be best to pm and ask for details.

 

If you are impatient, you can always buy D-Touch on the Amazon store for a more complete product as far as boom and its demos are concerned for the now, but even then you may be able to work something out with the dev by buying the new one and asking for a version of the old one for demos etc in the meantime while you wait; prolly would seem reasonable.

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1 hour ago, therektafire said:

I wish there was even a basic map editor for mobile too friend. But I'm sure that would be a pretty difficult undertaking considering the aforementioned limits of touch controls. A full port of say GZDB is definitely out of the question for example. Personally though I would be just fine with a simple Boom/vanilla compatible editor that just let you do really basic shit shot as long as it can successfully compile maps I probably wouldn't care too much

The best map editor for mobile I had is Eureka on my Android Tablet. I got it by having Debian Linux on it via the GIMP Inkscape app on Google Play.

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Just now, MetroidJunkie said:

The best map editor for mobile I had is Eureka on my Android Tablet. I got it by having Debian Linux on it via the GIMP Inkscape app on Google Play.

Huh? How did you use Gimp to install debian on a tablet -_-

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Because the GIMP and Inkscape app on Google Play has Debian Linux included in it. This guy didn't exactly port over those apps to Android. Consequently, it's quite a big app once it's unpacked.

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Hold up, what? The Inkscape Android app is a full Debian install?

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13 hours ago, therektafire said:

I wish there was even a basic map editor for mobile too friend. But I'm sure that would be a pretty difficult undertaking considering the aforementioned limits of touch controls. A full port of say GZDB is definitely out of the question for example. Personally though I would be just fine with a simple Boom/vanilla compatible editor that just let you do really basic shit shot as long as it can successfully compile maps I probably wouldn't care too much

Definitely, 

 

I couldn't tell you how embarrassing it is when I release a project I spent weeks on, then I see the screenshots and videos people post and I can see a missing texture here, a door that doesn't work there, players running out of ammo at a certain part, or always dying in the same place. Sure, the GZDB interface couldn't possibly work from a phone, but a really lightweight editor with some basic features like moving a thing or a vertex a little bit, or changing the sidedef or sector properties, or being able to find and replace stuff to quickly address those teeny tiny little gamebreaking things from my phone would be soooooooooo convenient for everyone.

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If it's just small things that you need to fix you could use a remote controlled desktop app for a smartphone to control your home computer.

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