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    The /newstuff Chronicles #188


    The Ultimate DooMer

    Well, it's another busy week with 12 wads packing a total of 45 maps (so busy in fact that it caused me to be late for the first time ever). We've got small, big, deathmatch, classic, silly, fun, frustrating and the most hyped wad since RTC. Will it live up? Read on...

    • Time Labs by Dark Soul
      45kb - doom2.exe - SP -
      I actually reviewed this last week thinking it was my turn, but dropped it when I realised it wasn't (if only I'd kept the review...). Anyway, a small and cramped base map. Detail is ok on the ceilings (with plenty of lights and grilles) but a bit bare on the walls, save for wall consoles. The remote base atmosphere is touched up a little by the dark light level and the normal sky. However the gameplay is deeply flawed - questionable archvile use right the way through (lack of decent weapons, cover and ammo are confronted in turn) which means that a lot of luck and quickloading is mandatory. Add to that a general lack of health, and you have a map that is not recommended unless you like cramped battles and F9.

    • Purgatory by James Wilson (Shade)
      91kb - doom.exe - SP -
      Two Doom 1 maps, covering E2M1-2. Although you're better off ignoring the first map, as it's a small low detail affair that ends in a damage pit surrounded by imps. The second is a big heavy affair, with plenty of monsters. In fact this map is quite tricky at the start, as a lot of evasion is required until you get your ammo up, and the rarity of rockets and cells makes things tougher later on. Detail-wise it's mostly average with some poor areas thrown in, and the texturing is random. You'll enjoy the second map for it's fun factor, although it is a bit of a slog.

    • Return to Purgatory by James Wilson (Shade)
      497kb - doom2.exe - SP -
      And here's the sequel, a 7-map wad that curiously starts at map 11 and finishes on the secret ones. Detail is often quite nice, with lighting, giant structures, plenty of pillars and wall decor but is quite bare in many areas, and many rooms from the original Purgatory appear in here as well. It has the traditional random layouts, themes and texturing that most classic-style wads have, but the gameplay is something else. Think Blind Alley, but with bigger maps and a gradual rise in the type of monsters and the difficulty throughout. There's also some really neat set-pieces too, including the entire last map. There's plenty of ammo, but you may start to run dry in the later stages. It is quite a slog though, so don't try to play it all at once. Overall a pretty good wad, perhaps lacking a bit in creativity (apart from a cracking map 14) but making up for it with creative traps, good gameplay and sheer fun. Enjoy.

    • The Wasteland Series by Alberto Barsella
      295kb - doom.exe - SP -
      A compilation of the three classic wads Deadbase, Mntfire and Sndsdth complete with titlepic. Consequently I won't go into too much detail, but if you haven't played them then the first map (Deadbase) is an all-time classic remote base map with a city layout, the second (Mntfire) is a red rocky volcano map with a lot of winding corridors, and the third (Sndsdth) is an outdoor map with an E2M8 look, a unique scorching desert sun and a confusing where-do-i-go-next setup.

    • Sadhus Chauffer Trio by Blake Stoner
      1000kb - source port - SP -
      A 12-map silly wad that is a picture of complete madness - from the textures/flats through to the insane monsters and set pieces. All maps are the usual vanilla mockery format, crap architecture with HOM's everywhere (try map 11, heh). However it is playable for the most part, and the moving trees are pretty funny - I think they deserve an outing in the next ZDoom mockery wad, if it ever existed. Apart from that, it's as you were with silly wads. (btw if you are interested in playing it, you need to remove the player definition from the dehacked patch so you can move)

    • Helavator by Chris Bourke
      9kb - doom2.exe - SP -
      A simple map with 4 octagonal rooms and a passage round the outside. 50 basic monsters is all you get, but with an airtight ammo balance and no health.

    • Deep Pit of the Damned by Jimi
      9kb - doom2.exe - SP -
      A rocky canyon with some but not much detail, and gameplay based around a few tricky archvile moments. There's plenty of ammo but no health, so watch it. Dowload if you like those type of battles (it's only 9k) avoid if not.

    • Action Boom by Max Augustus (BlackFish)
      469kb - ZDoom - SP -
      A parody of the wad below, with silly graphics, crap level design, a whole load of missing textures and not much else.

    • Action Doom by Stephen Browning (Scuba Steve)
      14350kb - ZDoom - SP -
      Well, was all the hype justified? It depends on your preferences, but fortunately I didn't see most of the hype so I got to play it without expectations. 4 maps, one of which has 2 different routes that also take in different parts of the next one. The first is a city with incredible detail on the ground and in the special effects, the second is a forest with some revolutionary set-pieces (depending on route) the third is a lab gone wrong with a great destroyed feel to it. Plenty of nods to various things, (both on and off DW) and many innovative sideshows can be found, too. The gameplay is a new but old concept, that of 2D platformers where everything (including you) takes one hit to kill except bosses. This is quite different to tackle in the FPS view, and while certainly challenging can be downright annoying too, and many of you will get frustrated at it (which is just like the old 2D platformers, really), particularly in the last two set-pieces (where one is impossible and the other is the final boss). Most of the graphics are new, some are taken from regular sources and others are normal. The music has the authentic 80's game feel, and it changes all the time for various things. The ZDoom features and scripting are some of the most impressive ever seen, and the only problems with it are the frustrating gameplay and the fact it's way too short. But you need to play it anyway.

    • Dream Duel by Spunkman
      4900kb - Skulltag - DM -
      An impressive set of 5 Skulltag maps. With themes comprising of a tech base in a lava sea, an underwater base, a medieval castle, a floating base and a mine, they look good regardless of the actual detail in the maps. There's a few Skulltag weapons and many ZDoom features, including an underwater section. Ammo and health are kept to a minimum, so you'll be scrabbling for new weapons fairly often. The maps are fairly small, so you won't need too many of you to have some interesting battles in some interesting environments, and also the mod music is excellent. So go get it if deathmatch is your thing.

    • Destiny by GiNGE3
      247kb - ZDoom - DM -
      A gothic deatmatch map that looks quite good. Using some gothic textures, some brick and the TFC sky, the detail is pretty nice all round. It's mostly buckshot and rockets, but with optional plasma weapons in secure places. Ammo, health and armour are present too, so you shouldn't run out, at least before you get blasted. The layout is a little larger than in many maps, so if there's less of you some chasing may be required. Recommended.

    • Nilla Doom by Use3D
      746kb - doom2.exe - SP -
      Another 7-map wad with action at it's forefront. As with his CC maps, the texturing is random, with many things looking out of place and some unusual combinations (often involving zimmer7) that sometimes work and sometimes don't, but some of the designs and concepts are quite neat and some feel Plutonian in nature but the layouts are confusing, especially in the last three maps. But gameplay is the winner here, as you might expect. An unusual weapon setup is present through the first four maps, and there's no backpack here at all. It's fast and furious from the word go, and tremendously fun until the last map, where the confusing layouts together with lack of ammo and health will annoy you. Plenty of revenants give it a Plutonia feel, and every time you open a door or go down a lift you'll feel like there's a bunch of monsters waiting for you. Great stuff, and it had better not get overlooked by other wads this week. (hype is fine, but too much is a bad thing IMO for any wad)

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    BlackFish said:

    Heh you got the screenshots wrong.

    Oh, and SP!


    Not guilty - everything was in lowercase when I sent it, must be the html/vb converter. (fixed them on this thread)

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    The Ultimate DooMer said:

    Not guilty - everything was in lowercase when I sent it, must be the html/vb converter.


    no it wasn't, it was all in uppercase :P

    I converted the urls to uppercase and they show up that way on the front page article, but the html->vb parser appeared to fuck up and make them all lowercase anyway, sigh

    edit: fixed (I hope)

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    Action Nilla DooM!!@!@

    The last three maps are complex, but with a little planning things will go smoothly.

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    Cyb said:

    no it wasn't, it was all in uppercase :P

    I converted the urls to uppercase and they show up that way on the front page article, but the html->vb parser appeared to fuck up and make them all lowercase anyway, sigh

    edit: fixed (I hope)


    Nope, they've gone back to uppercase. Probably because I changed them all manually just before you posted, oh well I'll change them back.

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    The Ultimate DooMer said:

    Nope, they've gone back to uppercase. Probably because I changed them all manually just before you posted, oh well I'll change them back.


    what noooo, they're supposed to be upper case!! (fixed again :P )

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    The Ultimate DooMer said:

    Well, was all the hype justified? It depends on your preferences, but fortunately I didn't see most of the hype so I got to play it without expectations.

    You mean unfortunately.

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    there is more action in 1 frame of action doom than in the rest of the entire fucking archive.

    Thank fuck for action doom, and thank fuck steve saw fit to make it bump along at 1 frame per year on my computer.

    If you want me I'll be outside stabbing old people in the face and watching them bleed all over the pavement.

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    Scuba Steve said:

    You mean unfortunately.


    Nope, as I find hype to be a bad thing if there's too much of it, as it leads to high expectations and the belief that what you're about to play is the best thing ever. And it leaves a sense of disappointment and you thinking 'why is everyone calling it the best thing ever?' when it isn't (I found that out when playing some of the 'classic' megawads, and it sometimes happens when I go to see films as well). Of course sometimes they do live up to the hype but not every time. (btw this is nothing related to this wad in particular, just a general thing)

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    Daniel said:

    my level DoomNiel.Wad wasn't reviewed. it will be on next T/nC?


    That reminds me - I couldn't get this WAD to work kid. I loaded the wad in both Eternity and ZDoom with doom2.wad and neither loaded it. Eternity crashed altogether, ZDoom spat out a series of errors on the console and just loaded the regular Doom II levels.

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    Action Doom has been reviewed to death so I wont bother talking about how awesome and orgasmic it is.

    Nilla Doom was a nice surprise. Some pretty fast and furious gameplay. Decent use of Revenants. I felt map03 didnt fit into the rest of the series though. Perhaps due to the texturing and the pain elementals. Great fun overall.

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    Daniel said:

    it will be on next T/nC?

    Maybe, if you say EXACTLY which version(s) of which ports it has been verified to work with.

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    The Wasteland Series released I saw earlier posted on Alberto Barsella's webpage. The third map sadly was never finished (although completable). There's also a 4th map posted there, which remains even less finished.

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    Some of the music on "Dream duel" is excellent

    Also, does anyone know how to do that "infintite horizon" trick?, i saw it in final doom on the playstation (dont have PC versions), and now in this wad, and i wonder how it is done..

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    deathbringer said:

    Some of the music on "Dream duel" is excellent

    Also, does anyone know how to do that "infintite horizon" trick?, i saw it in final doom on the playstation (dont have PC versions), and now in this wad, and i wonder how it is done..


    in zdoom and skulltag, you can just set a linedef to the special "horizon" and it does it automatically.

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    Woo, some good ones this week .. my review s :

    Nilla Doom : Awesome maps with some great layouts, hard as hell from a pistol start. Don't let Action Doom drown this one out, download it as well .. you'll like it :P

    Action Doom : It's obvious a ton of work and personality was put into this project. Production-wise it's amazing .. tons of new graphics and ACS scripting, and some high quality maps. Personally I didn't think the gameplay was action-y enough .. I felt something like a time limit on the maps would make it seem more frantic and fast-paced, as well as having the enemies move a bit faster. Some of it is really frustrating, just like good ol 2D shooters.

    Time Labs : I've had more fun falling down a flight of stairs.

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    Oops. Bad gameplay huh? Oh well. My next wad won't be as hard/annoying. It'll be more fun I promise. It was only my first release anyway. Thanks for reveiwing it.

    Funny thing is i can beat it easily without luck or saving. But then again it's my level.

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    They tried but they're too many files to deal with.

    edit: come to think of it, that screenshot for that wad looks like some other certain wad I made a while ago for deathz0r to review. The wad I uploaded was a big square room with a bunch of barrels.

    O_o

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    yeah someone told me that this file was crashing. i'll take a look. News: NewWorld2.Wad is coming out. I'll try to finish this week. If not, i'm going to vacation and... see you on september.

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    I kind of got it to work in the current version of Zdoom by rebuilding the wad and taking some stuff out (it crashed in other ports that I tried though - maybe that's fixable by someone more skilled in wad repair than me). Obviously I don't know if it's now working as intended, but will give it a short review on that basis anyway (unless you get a fixed version ready this week).

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