Strap on your diapers, kids. I had time off work and that means I can spend more time
making fun of reviewing your wads. Most of this week's wads are deathmatch, so that makes it easier for me. Sort of. Oh well. Hope you have as much fun calling me "useless" as I had reviewing.
- Dream House by Sean Bernard - - Everyone hates house wads. But that's because no one has ever done them right. Now, dream House is not quite the answer to life, the universe, and everything. But it is one step in that right direction. Admittedly, yes, there's more emphasis on exploring some dork's house than there is fighting and you'll find this wad way too easy. But it really isn't supposed to be that kind of wad.
To enjoy it you have to sort of see it from the author's perspective. As I went through his house, I was looking for what ideas he had about the sort of place he'd like to live in and I started thinking about what sort of house I would want to live in. In that way, it's not bad at all. The architecture is basic, but nice to look at. A little bit of bad texture use, but some of the new textures look pretty nice. The fridge does. The blue counters clash a little with the palette, but they're not especially ugly. And what can I say? He has a giant arcade machine for playing Defender on the Atari 2600.
(NERD!)And he even threw in some sound effects from the game. Just don't play this wad expecting a challenge or any sort of real gameplay because I don't think that was what he intended.
Oh, and one more thing; It's supposed to be doom2.exe compatible, but if you drop into the water in the main floor's living room you need to jump to get out. Really annoying if you're not using zdoom or legacy, which you probably shouldn't be using for a vanilla wad.
- SexyPapa by Jason "Hellbent/Grotug/Jacobi" Root - - If you liked Sexymama, you'll definitely like SexyPapa because THEY'RE EXACTLY THE SAME!
Okay, to be fair, the author fixed up a couple of parts and made everything look nicer. So why he gave it a different name, rather than replace the old one is beyond my limited human brain capacity. You know what, I'm not going to bother rediculing him on what's obviously an improvement. So, nice work on your wad
- The Last Strike Deathmatch Gold Legacy Edition by The Clan DFC editing team (/me gasps for breath) - - There's not much to complain about here but I'll do my best. Some of the levels didn't have any exits that I could find, which made it a little annoying to progress to other levels. There's new music, new sounds, and all the weapons are redrawn. (The shotgun looks really nice, but because it's off-centre, it's a little hard to aim. Oh well.) Some of the new materials seem awfully familiar, though. It makes me wonder where they were
stolenfrom. The text file says Additional Credits to : Rarefiles.tripod.com, Doom.getsomewhere.net, Clan UD, Skulltag, sbsoftware It's not very specific so I have no idea exactly where some of their stuff came from. This makes me irritatingly curious. Hopefully one of the authors will share this with me some time. By the way, the doom guy must be mashing steroids into his morning bowl of wheaties, because he must be shooting those two damn pistols at 1000 RPM!
Now that that's out of the way, this is a very nice-looking fun DM megawad, with great sounds, decent weapon sprites, and enough variety to appeal to just about anyone. If I knew where some of the sprites came from, I wouldn't be opposed to them being added to freedoom (I have to admit, freedoom's current pistol annoys the hell out of me, but nothing better has come along.) but from the information we get in the text file, we may as well assume that they're not available. Shrug.
Another tiny thing that bothers me is that the credits list names the various authors but doesn't tell me what they did. Why does this bother me? Well, if I were to host a project of some sort--let's call it Hyena's Super Mega Wacky Wad of Amazing Death and Maybe A Couple of Naked Chicks (HSMWWADMACNC)--and one of the people who asked to join was one of the co-authors of this wad and he used the wad as a reference of his abilities, I still would have no idea how he contributed. For all I know, he could be the guy who took the pistol sprites and used MS Paint to change it to two guns.
Well, excellent work, guys. Whatever it is you did.
- Nukeage Plant by AlexMax - - This is my kind of DM wad. It's not too open, but it's not too cramped either. There's enough places to dodge and take cover, and there's enough space to move. Therefore, me = happy. This wad leaves out the super shotgun, plasma rifle, and BFG so don't expect high scores very quickly, but it seems to do okay with the ones available. I would have liked to have the super shotgun in a couple of places, but it would probably throw off the careful balance of the level.
There's also one rocket launcher, which works great in a level like this, but because there's no ammo lying around you get two shots and then it's back to the shotgun. I think maybe this level would be a little better if there was one or two boxes of rockets, even if they were far away from the launcher. There is a backpack, however, and this seems to work.
Detail in this level is very good, except for one texture misalignment. Whoops.
- Blind Alley E., "The Pit" by Gene Bird - - Doom Nut, Grandpa must like me. He releases all of his wads on my weeks to review. Blind Alley E is the 125892th wad in the Blind Alley series. Maybe when he's done with all of these wads, he can put them all into one megawad. Or maybe he's already done all of them, but released them seperately so I can give him 32 reviews. Whatever. I think I'm in a good mood. Let me check . . . . . . . . okay, yes.
This wad is a lot of fun. The walkthrough is somewhat original and non-linear. I kind of expected a little more detail, but it really isn't bad-looking. Ammo balance seems to be in favour of "more guns = more fun" but lack of health still makes the wad challenging. It'll be the sort of wad where you'll want to have your finger near the autosave button.
- Rocky Deathmatch by Sandman - - A relatively good DM map in almost all respects. Decent texture use, an average amount of detail, and going completely off-topic in the same sentence, what the hell is with the weapons?
Does this make sense to you? A plasma rifle is on a platform and you need to hit a switch to lower it. It makes you work for it. But to get the BFG (which is right next to the plasma rifle) you only need to walk up stairs. By show of hands, who thinks this is good? Other than that . . .
- Branched1 by Jason "Hellbent/Grotug/Jacobi" Root - - I'm going to have to be very honest here. It's small, a little underdetailed, and kind of boring. It has a tendancy to be fun for a few minutes, in the same way as it might be fun to keep telling someone the same joke over and over again just to annoy them. Three super-shotguns in one room? Weird. Not the author's best work.
- Outpost by Michal DCK Kaczor - - Wow. To keep this to-the-point, and not one of my various off-topic rants about how I dislike Pokemon or delving into some big contraversial issue such as capital punishment, or that one time I was watching this movie Nightbreed and I accidently cut myself on a paper cup somehow and I'm all . . . *cough*. Well, like I was trying to say; Not only is the architecture nice, and the balance great, it's also very atmospheric. It's a little easy to get lost, but that's what minimaps are for. It's also a little short and, although this isn't a flaw, I think it could have done with some good scary music. Look this one up, if nothing else.
- Icerial 2 by Samuel "Kaiser" Villarreal - - I don't know what the name means, but I'll bet it's something icy and perilous like the wad itself. Excellent detail, texture use, and lighting effects. Most textures are borrowed from Hexen and Heretic, but I'm not complaining. It uses them well. It's fun and challenging, too and some legacy scripting adds a few nice effects. It does suffer a bit from Hit A Switch And Don't Find Out What It Does Syndrome and it will make you hate Pain Elementals like you've never hated a fictional character/creature before. But all in all, I'd make this one of your must-downloads for your Hexen-ish doom wads marathon.
- GAMMA: One Nerd And His Doom by Hyena - The last wad in this week's arsenal is by me, so you know it's awful. I don't know how much time I wasted, but it has a story that doesn't make sense and it's virtually impossible to beat, even through cheating. Yes, you can die even with god mode on. Needless to say I was in some way intoxicated when I made this. Either someone laced my daily cup of gravy with LSD, or it might have been made during the three days this week that I didn't sleep. I don't even remember what happened from Tuesday on, to tell the truth. Anyway, for one reason or another I named the main character Linguica and did voice-acting to make him sound like the hero from Metal Gear Solid. I profoundly apologize for this wad. (Requires ZDoom)