Extreme Weapon Pack - Doggo120
Doom 2 - ZDoom - N/A - 2925347 bytes
Reviewed by: Preliatus
An EXTREME weapons pack? Tell me more!
Above would be the general response to any weapons pack on /idgames. However, that should not be the response to this weapon combo pack. None of the weapons work a large percentage of the time, leading the player to be vulnerable to monster attack while the "reloading" animations take effect--ranging from degreasing your pistol, to doing a personal manicure on your nails, or waiting thirty seconds for the BFG replacement to fire, not counting the vacuum cleaner.
While the weapons themselves have extreme weapon power, I found the rare new weapon, the Gameboy Color, to be the most accurate, with the ability to make Mario noises and launch out Mario-themed sprites as ammo. It also gave the chance to give you everything, if you were lucky. At other times it would launch you to the other side of the map, and usually kill you.
For those who have a sense of novelty to their weapon packs, pick this up.
If you don't want to spend the game playing hide and seek with demons while getting your weapon to fire correctly, pass.
Custom Marathon Skins - Mjolnir Mark IV
N/A - ZDoom Compatible - N/A - 1993468 bytes -
Reviewed by: lupinx-Kassman
A skin pack consisting of three dudes from the game Marathon, whose names and appearance you can view in the screenshots above. All three skins have customizable colors, though it is barely noticeable with the cultist skins. If you like Marathon, you might like these skins I suppose.
Lithium - Jacek Nowak
Doom 2 - Vanilla - Solo Play - 10402 bytes -
Reviewed by: lupinx-Kassman
Lithium is a single short challenging map for Doom 2.
The author describes his level as minimalistic, and minimalistic is right. The map is blocky in a literal sense, as its architecture consists almost entirely of 64x64x64 cubes. The level uses only a few textures from Doom 2's library, and paints the map in two colors: grey and blue. It's a simple theme, but it works well enough.
It's a fairly difficult offering. Though there are few monsters over the map's short duration, they will murder your face if you don't play conservatively and patiently. New weapons are revealed incrementally, and for the first half of the map there is just enough ammo to bring down the enemy, so you can't afford to miss shots. Progression is pretty basic and essentially consists of circling the map while taking out large groups of single-type monsters packed together, and then hitting switches that lower outer sections of the map to reveal more large groups of single-type monsters. Perhaps the most interesting moment is when the outer walls reveal cacodemons from all sides, and an arch-vile is released in the center of the map where the player began, thus forcing the player to carefully choose the spots from which he/she can whittle down the horde.
Overall it's a decent map, though personally not too memorable. It does serve as a quick challenge though, and a lesson in not blazing through switches.
umwtf: a warm up map - chesse20
Doom 2 - MP3 Support - Solo Play - 5580768 bytes -
Reviewed by: Obsidian
Uhh...yeah, chesse20. Maker of various wads of questionable quality, infamous TF2 modder and general awesome person. Numerous works of his have graced the /newstuff Chronicles, all of them unhampered by such silly things as gameplay or respect for headphone users (THE BEES). So, how does this latest piece shape up?
To put it bluntly, it's a 1994 map with shite dubstep making up most of the file space. Heh.
I will say this much though: it's a great deal better than his other work, in that it doesn't over-utilize unnecessary DECORATE monsters and has some sort of gameplay. I noticed the Cyberdemon hallway would pull you along and deposit you in an inescapable pit if you weren't careful, which is a decent gameplay mechanic worth building on. I'd be lying if I said the room with about 200 Lost Souls didn't give me a chuckle either. Yes, this wad is somewhat awful, but I just can't bring myself to hate it. I will say that the dubstep has to go though, it makes me pine for D_RUNNIN. Heh.
Final judgement? Eh, stick to your day job chesse20.
The reign of d'sparil - Nick Rogmans
Heretic - ZDoom Compatible - Solo Play - 493598 bytes -
Reviewed by: walter confalonieri
Look, look, a Heretic episode! That's cool and also kind of rare to see in the archives.
This episode is a first try mapset by Mr. Nick Rogmans, but that doesn't mean that this episode will be bad looking, right? I mean, think of Deus Vault and other pretty cool first try maps... but unluckily this isn't the case.
This mapset for ZDoom replaces all of the first Heretic episode with all new 1994 look-a-like maps that start you in a graveyard (adding a hint to find the switch that opens the chapel door, no?), then a bland huge city, and then after a long journey, the D'sparil space station (I kid you not).
Layouts aren't so cool; as I said before, the maps are formed of lots of large rectangular rooms. The best map is the later space one; there are some cool ideas in that map.
Gameplay is a little bit dull, especially some annoying puzzles like the one where you had to walk on barrels in e1m7, and e1m2 enemy/ammo balance is awful (ah, how much I hated the huge amount of fire golems running in the streets), but... for a first wad, it is somewhat nice to see something for this game.
Overall, a mediocre set; play it if you want to take at look at this, but personally I don't like it.
Hexmas - Alzar Parias
Hexen - ZDoom Compatible - Solo Play - 38576 bytes
Reviewed by: walter confalonieri
This short Hexen map made by Alzar Parias is a "Christmas" themed speed mapping exercise dedicated to his only friends on /tv/ (a Television discussion board on 4chan), according to the title picture.
The level itself is just a short arena with some icemen stuck near a fire lamp; open switches to reveal more shorter rooms with obnoxious enemies like invisible foes and three minibosses trapped into a small pit. That's all.
Overall, a short level, skippable for better maps around there... the only thing that I'm glad about is this is not a terrywad.
The Room Below - TimeOfDeath
Ultimate Doom - Vanilla - Solo Play - 466133 bytes
Reviewed by: Fellowzdoomer
A good, challenging wad made by ToD. This is basically a slaughtermap for UD. Pretty difficult. I basically have to cheat due to the cyber snipers. This uses some visual effects to make it seem like it's room over room (ceilings, lifts, etc). It's all vanilla compatible! The monster count is over 1,000, more than half due to effects and some slaughtermap obstacles.
Overall, if you think you can handle the challenge, go ahead and try this wad.
Wyrda - Obsidian
Doom 2 - Boom Compatible - Solo Play - 292477 bytes
Reviewed by: xxbio Warfare11
A quick action map with neat effects. The game play for this map reminded me a lot of Vivisection from Doom 2 No Rest for the Living. What I mean by that is that the map starts off small and the more switches you find, a bit more of the level opens up and monsters spawn to try to kill you. Lots of halls with neat secrets and tricks. It's a map that you have to play with for a bit to figure out what to do. Some enemy placement is clever and makes you want to tear your hair out due to them owning you. Decent map.
XMas-themed .wad compilation - mallo
Doom 2 - ZDoom Compatible - N/A - 3578219 bytes -
Reviewed by: kmxexii
This is basically an old-fashioned partial conversion in a Christmas theme. The gameplay doesn't change at all, but a fair number of assets, some of them textures, have been modified for a holiday flair. I think a full-on winterization of Doom's textures has a lot of potential; here the sparing replacements feel out-of-place. It looks pretty cool when you enter the outdoor area of MAP01, though. The new monster graphics are kind of cute, except using H2H-Xmas Santa for the Zombiman is a horrible idea. Killing Santa over and over again is bizarre and hearing "OHHHH MY FACE" each time you do it gets very tiresome, very fast. Like the textures, a more thorough holiday-ification for the remaining monsters would add a bit more weight.
As far as weapon graphics changes go, there's a cute little bow on the shotgun. The plasma rifle fires snowflakes - neat - and the BFG turns into a frozen wand of icy death. The rocket launcher looks the same, but shoots exploding presents. Lastly, no Christmas PWAD would be complete without a jolly soundtrack, and mallo's handpicked a bunch of midis for the occasion.
I still want a top-notch Christmas megaWAD - H2H is cool but doesn't quite cut it for me - but you can kind of fill the gap with this.
Pavera Birthday Jamboree - Marcaek
Doom 2 - Vanilla - Solo Play - 27339 bytes -
Reviewed by: Obsidian
Marcaek, Marcaek, Marcaek: the only things I know about Marcaek is that he hosts numerous events on Zandronum and that he signs his maps with a little design of a cake (or should that be caek?). Nevertheless, this particular map is a speedmap in commemoration of forum member Pavera's birthday: which year, I have no idea whatsoever. Shall we begin?
Well... that happened.
The first thing that struck me was the design of this map: Pavera Birthday Jamboree starts you off in a central hub with 4 elevators leading to different areas. Some of the areas are optional and you can visit them in pretty much any order you wish. Surviving in said areas is another matter; the first time around I ended up in the yellow key room, which is unfortunately entirely devoid of weaponry and therefore inadvisable to visit as your first destination. Ouchies. Annoyingly enough, the other three zones each have weapons you can use, so I guess I just wasn't lucky.
Decoration takes a back seat in this map, as the focus is almost solely on gameplay: there are numerous traps and monster closets waiting for you in each part of the map. Some of the mechanics are quite nicely done (the blue key area was a favourite of mine) and there's enough room to maneuver so you don't get boxed in by monsters too easily. In short, the gameplay is well constructed and should leave you satisfied.
On the subject of decoration, I have only this to say: the FIREBLU is strong in this one. That is all.
Final verdict? Pavera Birthday Jamboree is an excellent way to kill time and an excellent use of time on Marcaek's part; cool stuff dude. I'll see if I can swindle him into the next Abyssal Speedmapping Session. :)
Alpacalypse - Canofbacon & Calmperson
Doom 2 - ZDoom - Solo Play - 1525733 bytes
Reviewed by: Obsidian
You start in a room decorated with random anime and some ammunition. Outside you see an arena with a group of friendly marines, a horde of one-sprite Alpacas that constantly call TroopAttack and a (one-sprite) Ronald McDonald on top of one the supposed buildings that fires rockets. I know I don't sound particularly enthusiastic about this and unfortunately there's a good reason for that: the wad as a whole is not that fun to play and looks very bland, attempting to pull off a cityscape and failing hard. I'd recommend playing something else, and I'd recommend to the author that he works on the basics of mapping more before he endeavors to create his next wad.
Demon vs Demon - Vile1011
Doom 2 - ZDoom - Solo Play - 180051 bytes -
Reviewed by: Preliatus
Demon vs Demon is a single-level map that takes a spin on Nuts.wad. Rather than being the sole attacker to a horde of demons, you are defending a fortress of demons from attacking demons. You, the space marine, is allied with demons? What?
While the map's premise seems interesting, I suggest avoiding this.
It's a bridge of demons, and about 1600 monsters, roughly. In Zandronum I lagged horribly while looking at the horde of demons. Your allies do not help with the lag, and your source port may or may not crash a lot.
Unless you're content with letting your demon friends die in combat, and staring at a corner in an unreachable spot, I recommend this wad.
However, pass on it. There's better things to download.
Ironrun - Simone Lombardi
Doom 2 - Vanilla - Solo Play - 123431 bytes
Reviewed by: BjarneC
[Ed: No screenshots because imageshack is an ass.]
I tried these map with Brutal Doom 0.19, in GZDoom, for that added brutality. I did them all pistol-start. Here a few short words map for map.
This turned out to be one of those "find-a-lot-of-switches"-kind of map that I don't really like. On the flip side, it has that nice use of wooden textures that I do like. 19 monsters, all dead. Also, I would have cut down on the number of torches at the end. Took me about 3 minutes to finish.
33 monsters. None of them left alive. I even went back to kill that Spider Mastermind. Yes, there was one of those in this map. I can't really say this map has a set texture pack; it seemed to be a little of each. It never felt really coherent. Nice use of some of the tougher monsters. Also, the exit teleporter looked weird.
46 monsters. Killed all but one. Again a little scrambled with the textures. But the fighting and moster placement was better in this one compared to the earlier. Also nice with some re-population on the trackbacks. The exit pillar did not fit in at all.
63 monsters (before the Pain Elementals had fun). The count is steadily rising. XX killed. The funniest thing here was the four Spider Masterminds that activate when seeing you cross a bridge. Then they kept shooting the entire map and I could hear them fighting as I finished the map. I left them alive. There was a BFG and ammo at the end when you had to face them, but I was not sure my rad-suit and invulnerability would last.
Last map. 65 monsters. This map took me totally by surprise in its sheer increase in difficulty. This one is hard. Lots of different tough monsters in cramped quarters. I do have to say I love the Cyberdemon surprise even though he killed me. You have Cacodemon swarms as well.
All in all these maps were not any masterpieces. I got the feeling the mapper was trying out some ideas and learning at the same time, which is good. Keep mapping. You show potential! You can have a future in mapping, and we do need short maps as well as long ones. But please think about two things: add secrets and mark exits another way.
Phoebe - Ameba
Doom 2 - PrBoom+ - Solo Play - 9103146 bytes
Reviewed by: BjarneC
So I decided to play "review-roulette" by picking a map at random! And when I read the textfile it mentioned "computer generated map" and I prayed to God I would not have to play one of those maps again. The textfile prompted me to use PrBoom+, but I used GZDoom and it worked just fine. No problems at all.
To my surprise, this map has been made really good!
Finished in about 25 minutes on UV without 100% kills. It provided a medium challenge, and had I picked up the plasma weapons I would have had 100% kills too. It's amazing what you can do with a chainsaw though. To be honest, I didn't even try to grab the BFG9000.
It's a tech/base map with some wonderful choices of textures: green and blue. It could have been a little longer for my taste, but most will find its size to be spot on. It kept getting harder and harder with the biggest fights in the last room.
I loved the female version of the Former Human; I hope to see them in more maps in the future. I did not like the new sound for the pistol though. Way too "sharp".
All in all, a map well done. Well worth the playthrough.
The /newstuff Chronicles #447