Jump to content
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...
  • Sign in to follow this  

    The /newstuff Chronicles #109


    Cyb

    Yay, your friendly neighborhood Cyb is doing /newstuff this week as a special guest...reviewer...yeah. Anyways, I've taken a break from playing GTA3 long enough to review these maps. Fortunately I stole deathz0r's week, so the volume of maps isn't too great, but I still had to deal with that lousy Alien Vendetta re-release and a few other crappy maps like the latest from Chris Hansen. Man, it never frickin ends, I swear. This week we have a total of 59 maps, though I could not get 18 of them to work. You'll see. Also, I've taken this opportunity to break the usual /newstuff review format because I'm a jerk like that. Now, let's get to those reviews.

    • fen boi's 3d examples - Lee Szymanski
      (wad) (txt) - Boom Compatibility and ZDoom Required, Doom 2
      Three small example maps showing various methods of how to do room over room type effects. One shows the old doom2.exe method, another using Boom's deep water effect and the third using ZDoom floating bridge things. It's pretty straightforward and good for anyone who may want to learn how to do these types of effects.
      Score: N/A

    • Fear Stalks The Land - Kenny Coughlan
      (wad) (txt) - doom2.exe Compatible -
      As far as I can tell from the text file, this is the author's first map. And I must say, for a first map, it isn't bad at all. It's certainly better than anything I ever released when I first started mapping. That said, the map itself is painfully underdetailed. There are so many bare walls and ceilings that I was hard pressed to find some architecture for the screenshot. Monster placement is well done however, and ammo balance is quite good as well, though I found myself running a bit thin at the end, I did I have enough to kill off everything. All in all, for a first effort it's quite good (the textures on all of the many staircases are even aligned), but it would have been a lot better with some more detail. As it stands it's a pretty forgettable map.
      Score: 5/10

    • The Hunger - David & Kathy Bruni
      (wad) (txt) - doom.exe Compatible -
      In many ways this map is worse that the last one. It's got the same big open, undetailed rooms, but it also has stupid hidden doors that are necessary to complete the map. Call me crazy, but running around a map like a moron and pushing on every wall is not what makes a map good. In fact, it's what makes a map annoying. I suppose I could be more forgiving, seeing as how the map was first released in 1994, but damnit, this is what updating is for. To make better. Furthermore the authors are former members of TeamTNT and even contributed a map to Eternal Doom, so why this map is like it is I understand even less. Skip it.
      Score: 4/10

    • The Omen - David & Kathy Bruni
      (wad) (txt) - doom.exe Compatible -
      More of the same from the above authors. Like The Hunger it was originally made in 1994 and revised, though I'm not sure exactly what was revised. Just a bunch of bland rooms stuck together with no real theme or order. Also one to not bother with.
      Score: 4/10

    • Rip it, Tear it, Smash it! - Chris "c-cooper" Hansen
      (wad) (txt) - doom.exe Compatible -
      I must admit I was never really a fan of episode 2. It always came across as sort of ugly and lacking any sort of design for the most part. However, the author of ch-retro has brought us another excellent map in the theme of one of the original Doom episodes. This time of course, episode 2, and not one map, but two. The maps are very well laid out and remind me very much of the style of episode 2. That would be, not quite as techy as episode 1, but nowhere near as hellish as episode 3. I think Chris nailed it right on the head with these two maps.

      Going into each one slightly, the first map is pretty short and straightforward. However, it's not easy in a sense since you'll don't have enough ammo to miss too much. The second map is much larger and more of a challenge with cacodemons thrown in many places and two barons in a fight at the end. The architecture of each map is beautiful and the textures all work very well together. The only problem was I couldn't find the red key on the second map right off, but that's more of a 'Cyb is stupid' error, though in my defense the texture behind it is red... Grab this one.
      Score: 8.5/10

    • WADHEX - Javier Fernando Almenara Otoya
      (zip) (txt) - Editing Utility
      An editing tool of sorts that allows you do view files (though the main intent was wad files) in hex format. So essentially it's a hex editor. I already have one, so I didn't bother to check it out, but I'm sure someone out there can find a use for it perhaps.
      Score: N/A

    • I Don't Know - Mark "JACKASS" Dravich
      (wad) (txt) - Boom Compatibility Required, Doom 2 -
      Ugh. A map consisting of three areas which seemingly have nothing to do with each other. You start off in a huge room with an assload of crates and a bunch of monsters trying to pick you off. Next after opening one of those doors that goes all the way up to the ceiling, you enter a dark area with a few sloppy lights. Next a big brick area with some sort of giant stupid looking tree and a bunch of lava. Once you get to the top of that mountain thing, run towards the lamp as the exit is completely non obvious. Don't even bother with this one.
      Score: 3/10

    • Torment and Torture 2: Armory of Pain - Daniel "Tormentor667" Gimmer
      (wad) (txt) - ZDoom (1.23b33) Required, Doom 2 -
      Okay, first off, with the latest build of ZDoom 2.0 (which is 27 I believe) this map crashed with a "ZDoom Very Fatal Error" for some reason. However, it will run in the last build of 1.23 just fine (beta 33).

      That said, this map may just be your greatest fears realized for some of you. It's Quake. The map is brown, ugly and very repetitive. Many of the rooms look almost exactly the same and at times it's hard to tell exactly where you are. Plus it's really, really brown. In case you can't figure it out, I am not a fan of Quake's color scheme. Not that I have anything against brown, it's just that when it's the only friggin color I get annoyed.

      That out of the way, this map isn't really all that bad. If you can get past the utter, utter browness of the entire friggin thing (with some orange thrown in for good measure) then you may just find yourself liking it. In fact, when the map first loaded I quite enjoyed the lightning effects and the nifty sky reminded me a lot of Unreal. It's quite cool. Monster/ammo balance isn't too great as I found myself running away a lot, but if you're better than I am at Doom (as you probably are) then you shouldn't have too much of a problem. Saving your ammo is also a good practice, as there's an arena area to the map where that ammo will come in handy. Also the two new monsters are fairly tough in their own right.

      Bottom line? Well, it's definitely not a bad map, it's just way too brown for my tastes, and many areas leave you with the feeling that they were simply pasted from another area and then just edited slightly. However, if you can deal with that, then you should go and check it out.
      Score: 7/10

    • codename HYENA killermachine - Unholy Software
      (wad) (txt) - Magic Needed to Run, (Ultimate) Doom
      Okay, I'd review this if I could actually play the friggin thing. The text file says it can be played on all ports, but it's a bloody lie! ZDoom won't even load it for some reason (it says it loaded it in the console, but there is absolutely no evidence of it being loaded), Eternity crashes with some sort of pallet error, Legacy loads it, but it crashes when I tried to play the maps and when I tried it in prBoom it loaded it fine but it severely messed with my controls somehow so I couldn't move. So, in conclusion, this is a piece of crap that breaks every source port I have on my computer. Your results may vary.
      Score: N/A

    • Alien Vendetta: The Compet-N Edition - Various
      (wad) (txt) - doom2.exe Compatible -
      Well it figures that the one week I decide to do reviews that those crazy bastards re-release the hardest megawad in recent years. Oy. Anyway, since there are 32 maps, and that's far too many to go into detail about, I'll just make a couple general statements and stuff.

      First off, if I had to describe AV in two words, they would be "fucking hard". These maps are not for the average Doomer. Or even the above average one. To get past these maps you need to have some sort of Compet-N record, or at least be a contender for one or something. There's a lot of damn monsters all over the place. It's nutty. Of course, I'm sure you already knew that.

      Okay, so the theme of the maps vary a bit, though the majority of them are a brown brick sort of theme. My major gripe is how some of them maps were brick themed yet there was a small tech type area thrown in there which felt severely out of place. This didn't only happen on the first couple maps (not all of them, mind you, but a few) but also in one of the hell themed maps there was a tech area that stuck out like a sore thumb. Also as a whole, there are two or three tech or base themed maps in the middle of it all which seems a bit weird to me. The text file of course explains why this is the case, but I figured that I'd point it out myself anyway.

      The maps are in general very good. There are many excellent lighting effects and some of the detail is really great. If you get the chance, I recommend running through a couple maps with -nomonsters just to check out some of the neat architecture. It's hard to check it out with monsters, as looking around while sixteen Hell Knights try to rip you open is not always a good idea.

      All in all, Alien Vendetta is quite good, as it always was, and the minor fixes and changes make it even better. Also, map24 is completely new (well, map25 was removed and map24 was switched to map25) which right there gives you something to check out. And of course, I'm probably being unnecessarily picky in the review, as really, Alien Vendetta is probably one of the better looking megawads ever made. Just the fact that it got made deserves some attention. Enjoy this folks, megawads of this quality are few and far between, and this very well may be the last of its kind. Grab this without a doubt.
      Score: 9/10

    Sign in to follow this  


    User Feedback

    Recommended Comments



    Yeah, this format kicks ass.

    I briefly played through Fear Stalks the Land and I must say I'm pretty impressed. The level could look better with more detail and better architecture, but then again you could say that about nearly all vanilla compatible levels. I'm looking forward to the authors next effort.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    The problem with Torment and Torture 2 in the latest versions of Zdoom is just due to the music. Use -nomusic and it is fine. BTW, the music is from Unreal's Bluff Eversmoking, so just have that playing in the background if you want everything the way the author intended it.

    It's nice to see the Brunis still/again active.

    Hyena seems to work fine in Legacy, jDoom and PrBoom (at least, I could load it up, and it seemed to play as intended, as far as I could tell from a brief look). There only seems to be a problem with Zdoom. Hyena looks interesting. One small thing: jDoom doesn't seem to like some of the door textures, and replaces them with some of its own, which look a bit odd.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    Funny, I always thought Quake had a dominant blue theme, not brown. The first level of every episode is all brown; that's because it's a base. The rest of the levels are always blue.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Cyb said:

    Enjoy this folks, megawads of this quality are few and far between, and this very well may be the last of its kind. Grab this without a doubt.

    Uhh... Hell Revealed 2, Plutonia 2, CXN, Community Chest, the Newdoom Megawad, Hellcore and Vilecore 2 anyone? Oh, and Freedoom, 'caus if you just use the new levels and not the new textures and sprites, that's a megawad ;)

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    Av is a great megawad, hard, but fun... :)
    chris's wad is also nice, keep the style of episode2 and is fun.
    I have't tested the other wads yet.

    btw, cool reviews, cyb... :)

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    Why the f*ck does the reviewer blame the brownness and quakeishness of TNT2?! Is Batman Doom bad because it's "batmanish"?! ...I hate about reviews like this, not because it is my map, it is because of the unobjectivness.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Tormentor667 said:

    Why the f*ck does the reviewer blame the brownness and quakeishness of TNT2?! Is Batman Doom bad because it's "batmanish"?! ...I hate about reviews like this, not because it is my map, it is because of the unobjectivness.


    I felt the map was too brown. Pretty much every texture except for the lava is brown and it got very boring and felt like Quake.

    Second, comparing the color scheme and the theme is different. Batman Doom is great because it's "batmanish" as you put it. Your map is good in spite of the browness ;)

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    But I don't think it is ok to rate a map on it's color sheme (as far as thousands of colors aren't put together without a sense) and also it isn't fair to rate it by comparing it to another game like quake. Yes, Quake textures are used but also other textures (which look quakish, ok) and as far as you have played TNT1, you should know that TNT has this dark and creepy style.

    PS: Quakedoom is also quakish and VERY brown (not meant politically ;)) but nobody said, that this is bad -_-°

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    Color scheme is a very important aspect of any map seeing as how it's the major thing you have to look at. If a map had random rainbow colors I would also probably not like it, but I can't say. Your map was filled entirely (save the lava) with dark brown textures, many of them right from Quake, so how can I not compare? Don't take offense, I just think Quake is the ugliest game ever and I cant' stand playing it for very long.

    Anyway, don't let one review upset you, because I stand by my review, the map was way too brown, and not everyone is going to like everything you make (and it even got a good score since it really was a good map aside from the overall browness).

    PS - I hate Quakedoom and any Quake to Doom conversion. Ugly, ugly, ugly. :P

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    Hah! I knew someone was going to bitch about Cyb being cruel with his reviews. That means "Welcome to the club"

    Tormentor: You think the colours are not important? How would you rate a map that's good except for the fact that it uses only one texture? Same problem. If the whole map is one colour, you might as well stamp "BORING" on all of the screenshots.

    Of course, he didn't say the whole map was one colour, but if it's 79% brown, that's bad.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    By the way, Cyb's format (which seems to be the only thing people commented on for at least 8 posts) is interesting and it's given me a few ideas. Maybe I'll try something a little different when it's my turn.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    The scheme looks good in Quake, because it's not JUST brown, there's
    green and... uh.. stuff. I liked TNT2, but it did seem a tad monochromatic,
    and very bland. Good gameplay, not-so-good aesthetics.

    New AV = gooooooood.
    The new map rocks. What was the one that it replaced, I can't remember?
    The new one kind of reminds me of Memento Mori 2 in some places, and
    of Requiem in others. Great stuff.

    Will look at other stuff later.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    Well, I have nothing to play, so I'll comment on the format.
    Awesome, it looks all "official" and stuff.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    Nice format you have set there, Cyb. I always wanted to see a scoring system applied to /newstuff, hopefully other viewers will be able to vote as well in the future.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    What I don't get is:
    What is painfully under detailed to one reviewer is "true to the orig" to another reviewer.

    "Fear" is a good map and a great start for a first release.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Hyena said:

    By the way, Cyb's format (which seems to be the only thing people commented on for at least 8 posts) is interesting and it's given me a few ideas. Maybe I'll try something a little different when it's my turn.


    I thought this would happen, after discussing it a while back. I knew that using a scoring system would be controversial.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    Stupid question I know, but the screenshot next to the intro text from which WAD was taken?

    Edit: Ok, don't care about this it's Alien Vendetta... or that's what I guess...

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Berserker79 said:

    Stupid question I know, but the screenshot next to the intro text from which WAD was taken?

    Its from Alien Vendetta, you can look at the screenies beside the names in the reviews.

    [EDIT]: heh, too late.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    Well, this is it what I meant. Cyb said on its own, that he doesn't like Quake. I think that a reviewer should have an objectiv view on maps.

    And it is possible that I haven't made my point of view clear: Yes TNT2 is brown (instead of the sky and the lava) BUT the brown varies and there are a lot of different textures in there (not only Quake! Check "Delmottes Ogros Texture Pack" @ Afterglow) and this is why I don't think, the review of my map is ok... nevertheless, keep on dooming. I'll make TNT3 and change my mind about the used style ;)

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Searcher said:

    What I don't get is:
    What is painfully under detailed to one reviewer is "true to the orig" to another reviewer.

    "Fear" is a good map and a great start for a first release.


    Because reviews are OBJECTIVE. What one person thinks is great, another thinks is not. Fear is an excellent first map, but if you play it without that fact it's just a decent map at best. There's little detail, the rooms are all square, it's just boring to look at. Gameplay in the map is done quite well, but that's not the sole thing maps should be judged on.

    I'm not here to coddle everyone's feelings and love every map I review because that wouldn't be honest.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Tormentor667 said:

    Well, this is it what I meant. Cyb said on its own, that he doesn't like Quake. I think that a reviewer should have an objectiv view on maps.



    And here we go again. The reviewers should/should not be objective debate that has dogged every newstuff for months now. Whether they should or should not be is irrelevant because it has clearly been established that the reviewers are not objective, nor are they required to be. They will continue to offer personal opinions and styles or review. The great sausage has said this is fine, and that is why the reviewers name is beside the reviews - therfore they are not the views of DoomWorld, but the view of the reviewer.

    There have been far more posts about the style of reviews than there have been about the maps being reviewed in recent months.

    So can we please move on?

    As far as Hyena and Zdoom are concerned, this is due to a decision that Randy made about wads conataining skins. If a wad contains a skin resource, then it will ignore all the other lumps. This is to avoid people dumping skin wads in their skins directory and forgetting that they are going to be loading a dehacked lump, altered textures, sounds, whatever every time too. Makes sense. Pitty there isn't a universal spec for what should and shouldn't be done with things such as skins. For a while, port developers were coming up with rules for what should be standard implemantation of things, but I don't really know if any of that is still part of what developers look at.

    Back to Hyena - once the skin resource is removed, the wad does run, but there were loads of errors flagged up about the WAD structure by DeePsea when I was using it to remove the skin. although to be fair, the home page warns there will be bugs, and that these are unlikely to be fixed.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Ultimate DooMer said:

    I thought this would happen, after discussing it a while back. I knew that using a scoring system would be controversial.


    Sigh. It's not about the scoring system at all. What kind of assumption is that?

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    Tnt2 is in my opinion a great wad! The various brown and dark brown
    textures are excellent as well as the skybox.More like unreal than quake.Also, I happen to love quake.Project Slipgate,Qdoom are my favorite quake to doom conversions.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment

    OK, so I just finished TNT2, and it is a fantastic, very well put together WAD. I think I'd go with it feeling more unreal-ish than quake-ish despite all the quake textures. Not just because of the music (I played it in Zdoom, and couldn't hear the music) but because the look of it reminded me of a couple of Unreal Tourney maps.

    I'd also agree with the "brown" comments. I'm not a big fan of predominantly brown textures and their use in this map darkens it down and make the architechture far less distinct than it should be. Yes, some darkness for atmosphere is good but there were many places I couldn't see the hard work that had gone into making the level. When I cheated to get a light amp, I was "wowed" with the look of the place. It was a real relief to come out the far side and see the light coloured mountain/icy placed talked about in the end text, and a disappointment to find out it wasn't done yet. (I love Icy/cold themed wads.)

    The arena battle is not my favourite kind of battle. Very "Serious Sam". That is you simply have to go through a series of steps with spawning monsters to fight until the script has run its course.

    All in all though, a damn fine, and I found a pretty hard, map which has clearly taken a lot of time and effort.

    And I played it with Zdoom 2.0.29 (29.cab). The music didn't play, but I didn't have to use -nomusic to switch it off, it simply didn't play all by itself.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment



    Create an account or sign in to comment

    You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

    Create an account

    Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

    Register a new account

    Sign in

    Already have an account? Sign in here.

    Sign In Now

×