Yes folks, break out the party poppers, cocktail sausages (or a certain Portuguese kind if you like) and glasses of champagne (ok, probably not) as it's another landmark newstuff! By an extraordinary quirk of fate I'm presiding over it again, and once again (despite a slow start) it's jam-packed with wads. Everything from small to big, single map to multi map, deathmatch to CTF, from novelty games to joke wads, weapons and stuff that's just plain weird. Luckily there's some quality too, as well as updates to CDoom (a Boom port with 3D floors) and Decade (an E1 tribute map with ZDoom stuff). 33 maps in total, once again with double screenies to mark the occasion! Let the celebrations begin:
- New Episode 6 by L.mR-SOFT
1330kb - doom2.exe - SP -
We start with a bunch of small maps, running on 23-30. They're basic, full of misalignments and not very detailed. Gameplay isn't very hard either, despite the presence of a tricky new monster. Ammo and health are excessive (particularly megaspheres left in the open) and the new monster graphics don't look particularly good either (but then again I probably couldn't do any better, so credit where it's due). On the upside, some of the layouts and themes are ok, with a few tributes thrown in. There's also one or two tricky battles, usually involving cyberdemons. They do have a certain atmosphere too, so if you like the 1995-era style you might like this.
- The Facility by Jason Benson
30kb - doom2.exe - SP -
A small, dark brick/stone/base map. Detail is low and gameplay is easy, but this map could prove useful to those starting out in mapping, as (like the author says) it shows off a few basic editing features.
- Blaster from Quake 2 (with muzzle flash) by Luiz Eduardo (DuduCrazy)
10kb - doom2.exe - n/a -
Gives the pistol a new, familiar look and a faster firing rate. It's right-sided, so it could take some getting used to.
- Super Shotgun from Quake 2 (with muzzle flash) by Luiz Eduardo (DuduCrazy)
40kb - doom2.exe - n/a -
Gives the super shotgun a new, familiar look. It's right-sided, so it could take some getting used to.
- Glock 18 by Luiz Eduardo (DuduCrazy)
24kb - doom2.exe - n/a -
Gives the pistol another new look, with a faster firing rate. It's right-sided too, but shouldn't be as off-putting as the others (aim-wise).
- Dudu's Crazy Guns (and Music) by Luiz Eduardo (DuduCrazy)
523kb - doom2.exe - n/a -
A full weapon replacement. Most graphics are familiar, and some weapons have slightly different behaviour. Many are right-sided, too.
- Warzone by Xaser
620kb - ZDoom - n/a -
Another weapon replacement, this one has loading sequences built into them. There's a cool saw-blade thrower, a spreading energy weapon and a ridiculously overpowered BFG replacer. If you like splatting everything with power, this is for you.
- Newstuff 200 Tribute Map by Daniel
3500kb - ZDoom - SP -
Last time (newstuff 100) we had a joke map from ZarcyB, this time it's a serious map from Daniel. Not that it has anything to do with newstuff 200, as apart from one easter egg near the start and a sign at the end it's just a normal map. Normal by Daniel standards of course, so it's good by normal standards. A dark and dirty techbase resembling some of his New World 2 maps, this one is brimming with weapons - 14 in total, some from Heretic and Strife. There's inventory items too, and some new monsters to keep you on your toes (which they will). It looks and feels nice (in an industrial way of course) and plays pretty good, too. In fact the only downers are the darkness at the start (which will catch many of you out and maybe annoy too) and the fact that one new weapon appears in the final area, so you don't really need it. He may be a controversial figure round here, but he doesn't half know how to make good maps. Enjoy this one.
- Xenon Station Re-Release by Someone
181kb - doom2.exe - DM -
A pair of deathmatch wads, both of which appear on map 01 (this combined with their late newstuff arrival stopped me from running a server on them). They are both different versions of the same map (a base that looks like it's set on an island) and they are quite different in layout, though they do have the same warehouse room in. There's a mix of weapons and other stuff, but it is a bit cramped so expect plenty of movement mistakes from all parties. It looks quite good, but I can't see this one playing too well.
- Nuclear Deathmatch by Bloodskull (ShadowRunner)
433kb - Skulltag - DM -
A large-ish but fluent deathmatch map set in a sludge plant. It's impressively detailed, good to look at, and many ZDoom (but not Skulltag) features are used, including a rare DM appearance for water zones. The layout is pretty free-flowing, with only one or two dead ends (usually secrets) but there's also places to hide. Gameplay can be a bit of manhunt or hide-and-seek with only 2 or 3 players, so a fair number is recommended. All weapons except chainsaw exist, with the stronger ones hidden away so you'll get a variety of battles if you want (you might end up running out of ammo, too). There's also plenty of health, armour and powerups scattered around (and don't forget to take a dip for some goodies). Some of the placement is bad though, notably the easy-to-reach supercharge and rad suit (leading to more easy pickings). It's a good map though, and highly recommended if you can get a few people playing.
- Black Void CTF 2 by Mephisto
432kb - Skulltag - DM -
A rare appearance in newstuff for a CTF map, this is the sequel to a similar wad. That one had teleporters linking the areas and this one has springs. It looks good, but the high detail level makes the map a bit laggy, even for a 1-on-1. 3 small-ish platforms not that far apart make up the map, with many goodies on the middle platform. The air control does prevent people from spamming the springs (as you can control where you land) and the variety of weapons can lead to some good fights in the middle, but aside from that the map doesn't work particularly well. It could become chaotic (and fun) with a few players, but it would probably lag even more. But opinions on CTF wads depend a lot on who was playing at the time (I only played it 1-on-1), so it might play differently for you.
- Ossuary by Mephisto
63kb - Skulltag - SP -
A small brick map. A couple of new monsters are present, but these are the only Skulltag features in this map. It looks nice, particularly with the lighting and the gameplay is mostly cramped stuff. It is possible to go the wrong way too early and leave impossible odds, and it's nothing spectacular really. Ammo and health are balanced finely, though.
- Ossuary 2 - Plains of Hell by Mephisto
116kb - Skulltag - SP -
A big hellish arena map. A couple of Skulltag weapons are here this time, but no new monsters. Instead it's a traditional PE/AV/HR slaughter-fest, although the monsters are all chained to their platforms. Still it's good fun, and some daring moves might be needed to grab some extra ammo when you run low. It looks quite good, too. Nice.
- Romero Death Skittles by Russell Pearson
1090kb - ZDoom - SP -
The next in an increasingly long line of novelty games for ZDoom is a bowling sim. There is no skill involved (as the opening message suggests) but it's tactics that are the key to success. There's a lot of things you can do, particularly with the various powerups you can get (along with special pins in the frames). This makes it really fun, and could be addictive, too (more so than previous novelty games). One must also appreciate the beauty and achievement of building this, as the scripting is of the highest order and so are the various ideas and concepts used within the game. It will take a while to master, but you'll have a good time with this. Recommended.
- Dark Keep by Riflebob
81kb - ZDoom - SP -
A dark, brick map. Everything (walls, floors, ceilings) is 90°, but the atmosphere is surprisingly good - which is down to the lighting effects and new-style texturing. Gameplay isn't bad too, with some ZDoom monsters (note: you need to load the monster and human wads with it), some tricky battles, an ammo balance as fine as they come and you'll have to watch the health. An interesting map, if a little short.
- Asylum of the Wretched by Ian Myers
2030kb - source port - SP -
I don't quite know what to make of this one. It's set in one of those cold, dark, hostile places that no-one should go to. The atmosphere is one of the best I've seen, with dark graphics, dark lighting and a dull grey sky providing the visuals and some well-executed and scary ambience providing the sounds. The detail is fairly good, and there is some nice lighting to shine out from the darkness in places. Gameplay though, doesn't really exist - you start on 23% with no health in the map, a string of secrets leads to weaponry (except for a blood-drenched chainsaw, which comes for free after a while) there's two exits (one of which can be accessed early on) and half the map doesn't seem to be accessible for some reason. In a way, this sets it up for a totally different style of play where the aim is simply to escape against the odds, rather than kill stuff. It may seem a bit pointless if you look at it the normal way (which I did) but look at it in a different way and you'll see the beauty in it. It requires patience though, so all in all a truly unique wad with a unique challenge (and one of the scariest ever), but it's not for everyone.
- The Place of the Tomb by Pawel Zarczynski (Nmn)
463kb - doom2.exe - SP -
Strange...this almost seemed like the previous map. Similar graphics (Quake 1 style) and ambience (in terms of sound types) and in some cases darkness too, but this one has more normal gameplay (well, apart from the ammo - ie. not enough). It's set in the mountains and is basically a (you guessed it) Quake-style tomb of dark stone and metal. It looks nice and has an atmosphere too. It's fairly difficult, with a tough loosely Map 07-based start and after that the lack of ammo makes it tough. Jumping is needed to get at ammo and out of a pit which opens up in front of you. It's ok, but not great.
- MOOeD DooM by Aaron Flatten
416kb - doom.exe - SP -
It wouldn't be complete without a silly wad, but this is an old one. 3 maps, with some crappy new graphics and humourous sounds. The layouts are linear and crap as you'd expect, but still different to what comes out nowadays. And there's one or two half-decent areas. Gameplay isn't too bad actually. One or two tricky moments exist, and you'll have to watch the health throughout. Probably one to miss, though.
- Enigma 13 by Lexus Alyus
970kb - ZDoom - SP -
Another joke wad, but like my Mock 2 maps it takes itself a bit more seriously (ie. relying on weird-looking stuff, concepts and funny messages rather than crap architecture and texturing). Much of it is of a weird psychadelic vein, with bizarre warping textures/flats and a weird but rather spiffy skybox. The detail is ok in some areas, too (and one area looks nice in particular). There are various humour stops along the way, including a guest appearance from a fellow ZDoom forumer. Some of the jokes are subtler and some specific to the ZDoom forums, but it's still better than in most joke wads. Gameplay consists of shooting up teddy bears, eyeballs and sheep skulls throwing various things, plus some neat jumping areas. It's doable without cheating - well it would be were it not for the stealth sheep skulls with super-fast super-hard projectiles. Still, a damn sight better than most joke wads, and one that is actually worth playing.
- Titan by Jesper Krag Rasmussen (Ixnatifual)
4460kb - ZDoom - SP -
We've been waiting for a special wad for this special occasion, so here it is. 9 ZDoom maps, set on the Martian moon of Titan (err...no). You start in a base, and journey across the moon to another base, a castle and of course finishing in Hell. Detail varies from good (rocky maps) to very good (tech and gothic maps) to outstanding (last map, no screenie to find out beforehand). Good use of slopes, surprisingly good use of the SP_ROCK cave style (normally that doesn't really work but not here) and the TEKWALL textures, plus an amusing use of the scrolling face texture. Some tributes are present, and the maps feel a part of a journey. The gameplay is pretty good too, from a creep-around-in-the-dark warehouse through some sneaky traps and a tricky cyber battle to HR-style slaughterfests and a spectacular finale involving the newest monster to come out of ZDoom (you know, the really nasty one). Ammo and health are reasonably balanced, and there's some new monsters throughout and a highly unusual 'boost' for the final map. It is pretty challenging too, so sharpen your instincts and get ready. This is a great mapset, one not to be missed and is definitely the Redux/Captain Mancubus of newstuff 200. (that's the best wad of the week and one of the best wads of the year, btw)