Bigriver - Mark Kortegast :caesarea @AOL
Heretic - Vanilla - Deathmatch - 21970 bytes -
Reviewed by: vtm
Bigriver is a Deathmatch map for Heretic. A big open map, players start in small rooms protected with a texture to simulate a solid wall. Near each deathmatch start a dragon claw or an ethereal crossbow can be found. The corridors are marked to behave like an icy surface. The big central room contains a phoenix rod which can be reached using the wings of wrath found in this same room. Near the exit a pair of morph ovum can be found. There are four tomes of power and all weapons are present. The design is quite simple, very few misaligned textures, and no river is present here.
I didn't find it entertaining, as I prefer vanilla maps for deathmatch. Give it a look if you are looking for other deathmatch maps.
Derceto - Mike MacDee (Impie @ Doomworld)
Doom 2 - ZDoom - Solo Play - 3387482 bytes -
Reviewed by: joe-ilya
An approach in remaking some mansion from another video game. Failed miserably and is full of bugs and glitches, not bright in these terms.
At least it has gameplay and isn't over the top. Recommending this for everyone who doesn't care about realism and about a map being unfinished yet published to /idgames.
You're stuck at some points and end up being unable to finish the map.
1024:ABC edition - Ilya "Joe" Lazarev
Doom 2 - Vanilla - Solo Play - 463616 bytes -
Reviewed by: Snakes
Ah, yes, the concept wad - such tricky ground for mappers to tread. Go too broad and there might as well never been a concept. Go too narrow and you corner yourself into getting redundant. 1024:ABC edition, to say the least, has found itself stuck firmly in the latter category.
1024:ABC is problematic on many fronts. Firstly, let's all be real for a moment here: the 1024 idea is pretty much burnt out at this point. If I had to guess, it probably sits right behind crate-maze and speed-map-orama as the tried and true, cool-your-jets go-to for mappers. Add in the fact that Mr. Lazarev is now coupling that limitation with incorporating a letter into each map, and my goodness, the mapping has to be extraordinary to make it feel fresh and exciting.
Sad to say, it does not. Redundant and ugly, this is a megawad that fails to spark any sort of real "must try" vibes for me. The visuals are at best a hodgepodge of themes, the layouts are almost all created by using the letter as a trench, and the gameplay is mostly a mishmash of hold-the-trigger firing that just gets burnt out after a while. At their worst, I found at least one large HOM and a few stuck monsters that merit eye-rolling and make you wonder if the maps were ever truly tested.
This isn't to say that there aren't occasionally bright moments to be found. While Map16 (O) is another trench-in-layout design, it does come off as a fairly fun map, and even pretty clean-looking, aside from those steps that jet out after some switch-triggering. The secret map can be a spot 'o fun if you don't mind the use of certain, not-to-be-named enemies (I did "not see" that coming!). Most important is Map16 as it shows a quick glimpse of a good idea - I had to decide when to use which weapon! A refreshing change of pace after holding down fire with a plasma rifle was a go-to.
All in all, 1024:ABC mapped itself into a corner, and Mr. Lazarev just doesn't have all the skills in place to pull it off in an inspiring way. Perhaps somewhere down the road I'll be eating my hat when he releases a Cacoward-winning Omegawad, but until then, I'm going to encourage him to dabble in more traditional fare before going for the wackiness that is this idea. Give this a pass unless you're a wad connoisseur.
Hey Hey Hangar-Entryway! - scifista42
Doom/Doom 2 - Vanilla - Solo Play - 39895 bytes -
Reviewed by: joe-ilya
A couple of fusion maps for both Dooms. The mechanic to play the other level is rather smart, you have to load doom.wad instead of doom2.wad.
Those two maps have a lot of detail. It doesn't look like id's style, so don't complain that it doesn't look id-ish because that wasn't the intent, and this is just a little experiment at mapping as suggested by the author.
The maps are rather difficult, at least without secrets, so watch your step, Mr. non-finding-secrets marine. But for real, the maps are hard either way, you should like this little Pwad regarding the difficulty. I recommend playing this on HMP first and after that you can try the UV difficulty, just for the sake of playing this the normal way.
Fields of Glory - Rastrelly
Doom 2 - ZDoom - Solo Play - 678399 bytes -
Reviewed by: Zulk-RS
The description says that this map was designed to look as natural as possible. I highly disagree with you here. This map looks like it was made without much thought. There are eight maps in total. Each map finds a new way to be bad. To truly understand how bad this is, we need to review it map by map.
This map adds to new weapons to the mix. The Gaussgun is like a powered up version of the Chaingun. It's not completely useless. But it's nothing too special. Also, it's not drawn too well either. The Missile Flooder serves only to use up all your rockets and to possibly get yourself killed. If I were you I'd stick with the Rocket launcher. Now I will review this wad piece by piece.
Title Screen: The moment I saw the title screen pop-up I was dumbfounded. I was basically just staring at the screen with my mouth open and wondering "What am I looking at?" I was snapped back to reality when the screen changed.
Intermissions: To prevent spoiling the wad anymore than it already is, I'll just say it has tons of spelling and grammatical errors. Which is accompanied by pictures that seem to be drawn with MS paint (being drawn by MS paint isn't a bad thing.)
First Map: This map features really narrow hallways and Barons of hell placed in small rooms. This map is frustrating because you're likely to get hit by stuff that normally wouldn't be a problem to dodge. Strafing becomes hard on account of the small spaces. It also features hordes of monsters in small spaces. So yeah. Have fun!
Second Map: The narrow hallway problem persists in this map as well. But the main problem here is that the map is confusing as all hell. Even now I have no idea how I exited it.
Third Map: This map somewhat removes the narrow hallway problem. It's a map that is 50% red, 50% gray and 100% meh. Features a Cyberdemon and a few other monsters in a tight exit room.
Fourth Map: This map is Doom64 dark. If it was brighter, you'd notice how bland this map really is. It also features a door that's the size of a short hallway. Why would anyone put that there and think it was a good idea? Also the author also forgot to mark some poison floors as poison. So yeah! Harmless poison!
Fifth Map: It's actually a better looking map than the first four. It features a pit filled with Cacodemons. Both sides of the pit are elevated and you use that to travel from one side to another. One side has demons running around and the other side features six to seven Cyberdemons that snipe you from afar. But what really kills this map is the placement of a Cyberdemon, Archvile, and a few other monsters in a narrow hallway near the exit.
Sixth Map: The best looking map is followed by the worst looking map. Its main problem is the really horrible texture choices.
Seventh Map: This is a easy slaughter map. It reminds you of Holy Hell but not in a good way.
Eighth Map: This is the last map, and it's probably the one with the least problems. It does have some confusing parts, but after everything else you've been through, this isn't too much trouble. You exit the level by shooting J. Romero's head (big surprise).
Extras: The protagonist of this wad isn't Doomguy. It's someone that wasn't named and looked sort of like a female version of the Silver Surfer (only far less awesome). It has a custom HUD with this guy's face instead of Doomguy's. Oddly enough, the 0% health face is the same as the Doomguy's. Before you ask, no, it doesn't feature any custom skins.
This wad really isn't worth your time, but if you want to experience the sheer crappiness of this wad first hand like I did, you're welcome to play.
Doomworld Mega Project 2013 - Various
Doom 2 - Multiple - Solo Play - 27824603 bytes -
Reviewed by: joe-ilya
A big map pack filled with random maps that haven't got any quality control. Watch out for a lot of bad maps; there are some gems here and there, but otherwise, be wary of the bad ones. They are either frustrating, bad, or just plain weird.
There are three wads for different source ports (Vanilla/Limit-removing, Boom and ZDoom). A short summary of each:
The Vanilla/Limit-removing wad has plain and normal levels but there are lots of weird or either hard maps as well. Recommended to play all of them as they're pretty much playable and beatable (if you're good). The good maps are really fun and enjoyable.
The Boom wad has the fewest maps here but at least only a small amount of maps is bad, but the rest are plain awesome. This is the best wad in this pack, so it's a must play for everyone.
The ZDoom/UDMF wad is just a weird jokewad... no words. I can't recommend this to anybody unless they just want to see a whole bunch of gimmicks and nothing else, so yeah, you can look at it, laugh at it, but playing this is just ridiculously impossible (apart from a couple of maps, maybe more, not sure).
In conclusion, the wad pack is mostly just crap with no meaning, and in one of the maps there isn't even any exit. The good maps are sure to please though.
Dominion - Memfis
Doom 2 - Limit Removing - Solo Play - 1110528 bytes -
Reviewed by: joe-ilya
Two hardcore maps with Memento Mori textures and ideas all over them. The maps are heavily unbalanced, lacking health and the megaarmor. You're a damage sponge in these maps; you're not supposed to win like this.
Don't try to win these maps - not recommended for anyone.
At least the maps have some original ideas, so that's a plus. You're better off playing this without the monsters or with cheats just to see all the clever ideas here and there, but don't play it with monsters and without cheats, you shouldn't (it's not a rule but a recommendation).
Plutoned - Memfis
Doom 2 - Limit Removing - Solo Play - 1018102 bytes -
Reviewed by: joe-ilya
Oh man, this is heavy! The first thing you'll probably notice is how little health and armor you have to deal with all these monsters with almost no cover, and don't forget all the nitpicky hitscanners scattered way above your helmet.
These two maps are slotted far from each other, which is weird when the author could have just put it in the first two slots instead, but no, you have to IDCLEV and remember where the map is, frustrating crap.
At least the maps are small and have a sort of fusion between Plutonia and Speed of Doom, which is pretty original.
Can't really recommend this one; this couple of maps will piss you off if you try to beat it. There aren't even any difficulties to try it in a more forgiving way.
Octagram - Chris Scott
Doom 2 - ZDoom Compatible - Solo Play - 38606 bytes -
Reviewed by: walter confalonieri
"Octagram" is a medium-sized arena-style ZDoom map (but works also in other ports like Zandrodum or whatever it's called, where I played the map). According to the text file, you have just been ambushed and trapped by demons inside this STARTAN x CEIL1_1 combo textured arena for the sadistic pleasure of Nazis, barons of hell and zombies, to fight a bunch of monsters that come out from some secret door in the arena, fighting them with one of the two weapons you get at the beginning of the level (ONLY ONE since the hallway to return back to the starting room collapses after you get your gun, so get the most badass one!), and after a kind of hard battle, you get out the arena by killing the audience, reach another hell arena made of GSTONE1, kill more enemies, solve a puzzle, and finally kill the demonic boss of this place in his office, and then the level ends.
Some nice scripts and some nice combat here and there, but a pretty bland look on texturing and detailing ruin the effort... but overall, not a bad map. Take a shot!
xaserpic - TimeOfDeath
Doom 2 - Limit Removing - Solo Play - 148743 bytes -
Reviewed by: joe-ilya
A slaughterish slaughterfest slaughtermap made by your average "Time Of Death" fun stuff. Just kill everyone, proceed to the next area and repeat until you reach the final (custom) weapon. After you grab it, a huge invasion begins and you have to revise the whole map from finish to start and reach the exit at the opposite side.
Techno Takedown - Ben "Dreadopp" Taylor
Doom 2 - Boom Compatible - Solo Play - 271194 bytes -
Reviewed by: scifista42
A single Boom map by Dreadopp, which started as a speedmap, but the author eventually took a whole week to finish it and released the map on his birthday on July 9th, 2014.
The map is rather small and simple in structure, even though all three keycard colours are employed. Dreadopp put a lot of effort and care into visuals, detailing and lighting. It turns out as pretty impressive looking, although this kind of detailing style is somewhat common in many wads. All rooms and corridors are spacious enough for comfortable movement. This, in combination with moderate monster density, made me feel like I'm actually playing a generic simplistic map, just overdecorated and scaled up a bit. Not that I did mind it.
Gameplay is not difficult for a casual player, but enemies can pose a decent threat if you allow them to - so better keep yourself on toes. Various types of enemies can be found in the map, even if only once. Ambushes are rather mild and manageable, nothing too devious. I particularly liked the ammo balance for being fair while not overly generous, and forced me to explore around a little. Regarding secrets, more than half of them were hidden overly well (no hint, no automap), while the other ones turned out as very obvious.
Verdict: Enjoyable map, though there's nothing revolutionary about it at all.
Tom's Halls v1.6 - Tuxlar
Doom 2 - Limit Removing - Solo Play - 85516 bytes -
Reviewed by: scifista42
A sort of experimental map by Tuxlar (a normally playable one, though). It meddles together elements from various Doom(2) maps designed by Tom Hall. Co-designed, to be precise - all Tom Hall's maps in Doom 1 and 2 were finished by Petersen or Romero (reference), so it's hard to say which design elements are particularly Hall's. It's a known fact that Tom Hall took direct inspiration from real military bases, but his maps (in their original form) often ended up being flat and uninteresting (reference). Tuxlar didn't care about it too much, and just got inspired by the whole Doom 1/2 maps. Particularly E1M4, E2M1-M4, E2M7, E3M3 and E3M7 of Doom 1, and MAP10 of Doom 2.
Texture schemes of the model maps are copied very precisely, though partly mixed together. Almost all rooms have some sort of reference. So, naturally, the visuals look nice or at least okay, as long as you don't hate the model maps.
However, the gameplay is odd, not really what you'd expect from a modern map. I wouldn't say it's bad at all, but there's plenty of controversial choices just for the sake of making an homage. Extensively used damaging water (!) and blood. Small cramped mazes, sometimes with a damaging floor. A couple tough enemies early on, when you don't have resources to deal with them yet. Slow weapon progression, where you need to search for weapons in various places around the map, like if you were pistol-starting a random Doom 1 level. No super shotgun, while some tough enemies are present.
The level on the whole feels like an elaborate and oversized Doom 1 level, with enough height variation and some Doom 2 monsters in it. Navigation might not be trivial. On the other hand, not too problematic either. This is simply an exploration-based map. It's nonlinear and very well interconnected, especially after you find keys. Gameplay is pretty challenging at times, but manageable. Only the damaging floors can be really uncomfortable, but I'm personally not against this kind of damaging floor usage.
The map doesn't try hard to please the player. But even despite some player-unfriendly choices, you might enjoy the déjà vu experience. Those unconventional choices make the gameplay interesting, at least.
Blood Axe Fortress - S3rialKill3r
Doom 2 - ZDoom Compatible - Solo Play - 5577040 bytes -
Reviewed by: Zalewa
There are many things wrong with this WAD and only a few good.
First of all, author states that this is only a "beta". The text file is written in a manner that makes you wonder if what you're about to play is some kind of a jokewad. I was also under impression that uploading "beta" or "work in progress" is against the archives rules, but nevermind.
The WAD file consists of one ZDoom map (.txt states that advanced engine needed is "Slade, Doombuilder & XWE", but I just launched it in Zandronum 1.2.2), three MP3 tracks that are synthesized versions of original Doom MIDIs, and a 2.24 Megabyte TITLEPIC. There's also a marker for MAP02 with no actual content which causes the engine to raise an error after you complete the first level.
It's weird. On one hand we have a lot of detailing that decorates the entire level. On the other hand there's a lot of technical mistakes like inconsistent door speeds, door tracks not being unpegged, use of Nazi enemies, teleporter lines that miss "repeatable action" flag, misaligned and ugly textures, and inescapable death pits.
Level layout is mostly rectangular with clear progression from room to room. There is also a small maze on the way where player is blocked in an open area by railing. It's simple to navigate, but it's also packed with monsters that shoot from all directions. Unfortunately, there's some backtracking involved. As the level is not very big, it's not particularly annoying, but it still adds to all the other bad stuff that is going on here. Detailing, which I mentioned before, is applied wherever possible, but it's also very odd. It's something different than what other maps got us used to, and I find it surprising and sometimes displeasing.
Gameplay is mostly boring, with some difficulty at the beginning coming from battles in narrow areas and lack of ammo, but then you get a lot of power ups and ammunition and it gets easy.
Don't waste your time.
Smothered Hope - Ed C.
Doom 2 - Boom Compatible - Solo Play - 1044230 bytes -
Reviewed by: scifista42
A pretty well-designed techbase map, with impressive visuals and structure and enjoyable gameplay. Features custom textures by Nick Baker and a cool music track. The map is relatively long and has a monster count over 250, but plays in a classic way. Moderate monster density, no slaughter. Difficulty never goes too high (aside from the final encounter). In most of the battles, the player can step back to safety or run away without a bigger problem. The map doesn't provide exciting hectic moments or elaborate setups. Still, it can give you a decent challenge, thanks to frequently used revenants, some hitscanners, and others. Various types of enemies are present here, from low to high tier. Fighting them never gets too tedious, as ammo and weapons are provided in a well sufficient amount.
As I said, a lot of care has been put into aesthetics, detail, but also interesting architecture. Progression is partially linear; there's one given path to progress, but a lot of revisiting areas is involved. For me, the map was very pleasant to explore and to move around (there's always enough space for a comfortable movement). I had fun. I recommend this map; it's ideal for casual players, and maybe just slightly easy for hardcore players.
Brutalist Doom - 1337 Doomer
Doom/Doom 2 - Vanilla - N/A - 40079 bytes -
Reviewed by: scifista42
If you search /idgames for the author's name "1337 Doomer", you get 2 results. The first one (from 2005) is Congestion: 64, a full megawad parodying Congestion: 1024. The second one (from 2014) is Brutalist Doom. The description of the file tells you about the principles of "brutalist" architecture and how it's supposed to be emulated in the wad. It sounds convincing, and indeed, the wad does just what it claims to be doing. And anyway, it turns out feeling like a jokewad of sorts.
The wad manipulates stock textures and flats so that almost ALL of them become the same grey texture. Well, there are two different kinds of grey textures, one bland and one with a square pattern. In addition, there is a custom palette which desaturates the remaining colours, and a DEHACKED patch changing some sprites to lose their green colour. And all game music is muted. By the way, the editing trick to mute music and change all floor/ceiling flats is pretty odd and impressive at the same time; I don't understand it even after opening the wad in an editor.
And that's all. The only thing you can do is to wander around the stock levels, which now look very dull. Within ten seconds, you find out that it's not really worth the experience. This wad doesn't properly work with PWADs that add custom textures, unless you're using an advanced source port that supports multiple TEXTURE1 lumps. But as I said, I doubt this wad was meant to be a serious gameplay mod. Apparently, 1337 Doomer is (or at least was) interested in Doom modding community and has good knowledge with editors to do various things from mapping to palette, texture, and DEHACKED editing. On the other hand, it seems that he doesn't feel like actively mapping or maybe he can't handle it, so that he contributes at least with non-serious "concept" wads like this. I somewhat sympathize with him, if my assumptions are right.
Last thing to mention: some people (in /idgames comments and on DW forums) were convinced that "Brutalist Doom" is an intentional pun and parody on the famous gameplay mod Brutal Doom. 1337 Doomer never stated anything like that, and I'm personally not convinced if there's a connection, as the mods are very different in what they offer. But it might be true anyway.