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    The /newstuff Chronicles #508


    • 32in24-15: DWANGO Unchained - The 32in24 Team!
      Doom 2 - Deathmatch - Boom Compatible - 6.8 MB -
      Reviewed by: vtm
      DWANGO Unchained. A map pack of 54 Deathmatch maps for Doom 2. 32in24 are sessions where maps are made in 24 hours or less. This is the fifteenth iteration and the theme is Movies. Each map has a name with reference to a movie, and parody posters can be seen throughout the maps. All maps are Boom compatible.

      The maps aren't big and are intended to be played with 4 to 8 players; still, it has support for 16 players in the same round. They look beautiful; all of them are well detailed and decorated, including new music and new textures. The maps are split in two wads; the first wad includes 33 maps, and the second one, called bonus maps, includes 21 extra maps. It plays real nice, and the maps are well balanced; maybe in some of them getting the BFG is too easy, but still they are very enjoyable.

    • Secretdoom: Hell's Memento - Cyberdemon531
      Doom 2 - Single Player - GZDoom - 20.32 MB -
      Reviewed by: vtm
      Cyberdemon531 really shines here with this map set, totally a must play. Twelve single-player maps for GZDoom, this map set takes inspiration from Memento Mori and TNT: Evilution, and of course, it features GZDoom effects (3D floors and ACS).

      The wad uses the Community Chest texture pack and adds new DECORATE monsters to the roster, no new guns (that would have been nice), and new music. The maps are very well done; they are not too detailed, but its seems that the author took time to add small details to some spaces. Something that I did notice is that some rooms are just empty with no decorations, but in any case the dead bodies of your enemies will do the task.

      I did not find it hard nor boring to play. Not too hard but not easy either, health and ammo is never short, especially in the secret levels, but still makes you go take cover and keep an eye on your life; usually after each battle one is rewarded with ammunition and health. There is also new armor, which blocks all damage. Having 300 HP is very useful, and makes things easy if you know how to take the advantage in the map. Music is great! The author really knew what tracks to use in each map. I like all of it, especially the music from map05, map09 and map12.

      There are two secret maps that are not hard to find; I found very hard to find other secrets than these two. The first secret map was hard for me; I did not expect those revenants, but once you know the layout of the map, it is very easy to avoid damage completely. The other secret map hase many monsters and a lot of ammo; still, you can be ambushed and killed fast if you don't move quickly because you will see yourself surrounded by many monsters.

    • AI Enhancements: A Decorate Experiment - Chaosvolt
      Doom/Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 9.8 KB
      Reviewed by: Liberation
      AI Enhancements: A Decorate Experiment, a monster AI mod for (G)ZDoom.

      I won't go through all the changes made, but instead give a brief overview of what to expect.

      One of the big changes is the fire/health rates for the monsters. The Cyberdemon suffers rather badly due to this, an example being in Map20 of Doom 2: the Cyberdemon normally beats the Spiderdemon in the famous infight, but now the Cyberdemon gets totally mauled every time.

      Another big change is the fact that a lot of enemies side step randomly, which looks rather odd, and cacodemons go strafing from one side of the map to the other, which is rather amusing.

      Another feature is more monsters infight, but watching monsters fight each other and not doing any damage is kinda dull. Kinda game breaking really.

      The change I did like was that the Archvile now summons monsters; that's cool, but it's a lot easier to kill due to the pain chance having been increased dramatically. I cut one down with the chaingun without a single hit (I'm not complaining about that!).

      Other changes included weapon tweaks, speed increases, correctly coloured blood for barons, etc. and monster attacks have generally been made more unpleasant to say the least.

      To be honest I wouldn't recommend this myself, as I feel it could do with more work to get things more balanced, and a lot more play testing would help. Another example being Map08: the room with the barons and the Cyberdemon is now a dreadfully boring affair due to barons not receiving splash damage from rockets.

      The ideas are good, but in reality (at this time) it doesn't play well.

    • The Vile Keep (version 1.1) - Chaosvolt
      Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 221.75 KB -
      Reviewed by: Liberation
      The Vile Keep (version 1.5), a level for (G)ZDoom.

      To start off, this is an excellent concept; the idea is that the map has guard towers dotted around that use the Archvile attack on the player with switches nearby that will disable them. That's rather neat, but the architecture of the map itself really lets it down, which is a shame, as storming the fort area and disabling the defences before going on to look for the keys is actually rather good fun.

      Once inside the fort area you can go get the keys in any order to get into the final area, so that works fine. Ammo and health seem reasonable and monster placement is again reasonable; a lot of monsters attack from the front, but you do get ambushed from time to time.

      So, can I recommend it? Kinda; the map itself is a great idea, but the visuals let it down badly. The map was made in six days according to the txt file, but six more days spent on texturing and making the fort area more interesting rather than just flat walls, even using a brick texture rather than zimmer for the walls, would go along way!

      A missed opportunity in my book.

    • COD ray gun - Sgt Ender, aka Enderkevin13
      Doom/Doom 2 - N/A - GZDoom - 53.13 KB -
      Reviewed by: gaspe
      This wad recreates the Raygun from COD in Doom. For some reason the sprites have a weird blurry look. In the firing animation, if we can call it that, the weapon goes literally up and down with no muzzle flashes; it's rather unsatisfying to use. There's also a quite useless iron sight. It looks poorly made overall, and I don't see any reason why you should use this, as there way better weapons out there that are free to use.

    • Courtyard - HUGEkidsY2K
      Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 70.01 KB -
      Reviewed by: walter confalonieri
      A medium sized map made by HUGEkidsY2K while hyped for the new Doom game (and his first effort). It's a pretty classy level set in a tech / brick / wood base with some fireblu weirdness and uses only default Doom 2 assets (even the hated D_RUNNIN as music).

      The layout is simple and classic but has some good ideas, and there are some nice details, like the opening to the armor room. There are also some classic traps, like opening secret room closets with lots of monsters or a lowering floor to a little alcove with medium tier monsters, and a button that activates an escape lift from that point. The only complaint I have is that in some parts it needs to be more recognizable where to go; like at the switch at the end of the metal tunnel that leads to the room in shot 2, I had to wander a little to understand where to go before finding the open blue door bars in the little courtyard that gives the title of the map. Also, the exit sign at the start of the map was pretty misleading.

      The item placement is nicely done; monster choice is easy / medium with some evil choices like chaingunners or revenants that come out from one of the various hidden closets in the map, except the final battle setup that needs to backtracked to a preceding (and clustered) section of the map, where you're going to fight a powerful little group of monsters including an archvile and a pair of revenants and barons, making you think that you need to return back to the start of the map, as I wrote in the layout section of the review. Health is a little scarce here but ammo is well put, and I didn't found myself without ammo or anything else.

      Overall, a nice map and a cool first effort to pass some time (I finished this map in 30 minutes). Even though this map has some little flaws, it is an enjoyable map; take a chance with downloading and play this map.

    • Azurexia - Serge Haikin
      Ultimate Doom - Single Player - Vanilla - 35.28 KB -
      Reviewed by: Voros
      Azurexia is an E1M2 replacement for Doom.

      This is a well-made map. It's atmospheric, balanced and short.

      Visually, it's brown most of the time. There are some small misalignments with some of the walls, nothing big though. The lighting is properly done, with the "outdoor" areas having lots of brightness and the "indoor" places using darkness a lot, and sometimes a bit of both.

      The geometry of the map is nicely done. Some parts are small, some are spacious, but it's still an exciting map. The architecture is very abstract but simple.

      The thing placement is just right for playing a map that can be enjoyed and finished relatively quickly. Although it is easy, it is also enjoyable.

      This map feels like I'm playing a map from E1, and we all love that episode, don't we? Be sure to try this out.

    • Nex Credo - Jay X Townsend
      Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 671.86 KB -
      Reviewed by: Not Jabba
      2016 is the year of the partially completed megawad, it seems. Nex Credo suffered the same fate as Somewhere in Time: the author set out to create a full 32-level megawad, lost steam, and (luckily for the rest of us) decided to polish up what they had made so far and release it as a smaller mapset. Vispire has a somewhat similar story as well. I've reviewed all three of these wads for T/nC now, and in many ways, Nex Credo is my favorite of the bunch. It uses only stock textures and no music from outside of the Doom 2 soundtrack, but other than that, there's really nothing conventional about it.

      One of the first things you're likely to notice about the levelset is how slowly it introduces the weapons and monster types. The first three and a half levels are full of low-tier monsters and revolve almost entirely around the shotgun, and the pacing is very quick and fun. Revenants are thrown in sparingly, almost like minibosses, to keep you on your toes. You get the chaingun in the middle of map 04, right at the point where you're starting to really wonder where it went, and the difficulty increases dramatically shortly after that -- though I never found the levels to be too much harder than the IWAD.

      For me, the best thing about Nex Credo is that it totally nails the feeling of the original Doom 2, and not in the way you might expect. Doom 2 the Way id Did captured the feel of the original IWAD as well, but it mostly did so by creating an idealized version of Doom 2 -- one in which the id team stuck very closely to the core of their mapping styles and didn't do anything really weird. But as much as I love D2tWiD, we all know Doom 2 wasn't really like that. Whether it was McGee constructing a barely serious boss encounter around a gigantic crusher, Petersen filling a level with barrels, or Romero cramming zombies into every corner of "Industrial Zone" and making you jump off a tall building onto a tiny island so you could enter a secret level full of cartoon Nazis, Doom 2 was a weird-ass set of levels -- and that may be what makes it so great, what makes it still worth playing no matter how many brilliantly refined mapsets there are now.

      Nex Credo reminded me of that constantly as I was playing through the levels. The first couple of maps feel a little like practice, but from map 03 onward, Townsend starts to hit his stride, and everything feels just that little bit weird. Map 03 has a cool key progression, an interesting figure-8 layout, several nasty traps, and (as I mentioned before) pure shotgun gameplay. Map 05 has a great motif with nine blue tech pillars that keep popping up throughout the level, and whichever pillars you lower with switches or leave raised remain constant throughout each set. It also has a really cleverly designed ending.

      Map 06 has a nonlinear layout with a lift hub in the middle and a sewer full of Lost Souls way off at one end of it. Map 08 has a nasty opening trap, several spatial gimmicks that revolve around rows of chaingunner-manned platforms, a couple of weirdly identical industrial areas with keys in them, and then your choice of platforming gauntlets to get to the exit -- either running across timed platforms or under a set of crushers, but either way you'll have to watch out for the chaingunner snipers in the middle. Map 09 has an elaborately winding layout with lots of criss-crossing paths and spaces that open up later; you're forced to do a ton of backtracking to get both of the keys for the exit, but at least Townsend gives you plenty of new threats to worry about on your way back through the level.

      Map 10 deserves special mention, as it revolves around silence. There are around half a dozen Cyberdemons in the level, all of which will wake up and make your life miserable if you fire a shot; you have to either sneak past them, or, if you want to kill them all, find the secrets and telefrag them. There are some strategically placed imps in the level as well to make it difficult to navigate everything while remaining silent. I loved this level -- and it's another detail that reminded me of Doom 2, in which every single Cyberdemon/Mastermind fight is either optional or offers you a workaround so that you don't have to face the boss on its own terms.

      Nex Credo isn't just about gimmicks, though. Throughout every level (except for the cautious map 10), the gameplay is fast and fun, and every level is quick to play through. The major encounters are well designed, the monsters are often used in interesting ways, the heavy use of weak enemies makes you feel powerful up until you get slammed with Revenants and Arch-Viles, and there's plenty of fun with barrels.

      There are a few low points in the set, however. Map 07 isn't quite a Dead Simple clone, as there are no Arachnotrons, but it's still a little arena battle with waves of powerful monsters, one type at a time, and I found it a bit annoying. It ends with a Cyberdemon battle that makes really poor use of space; the Cyber can't leave the room in the middle of the level, and the pillar placement requires you to either strafe back and forth really close to the door or just stand off to the side where the Cyberdemon can't hit you because of the doorway's edge and simply shoot it until it dies. Map 11 is an okay city level, but it doesn't have any of the gimmicks that made the base maps interesting, and since it was intended to be the start of a new episode, it feels like a really anticlimactic ending to the set. Just think of map 10 as the finale and map 11 as a bonus level, and everything's fine.

      Despite those couple of levels, Nex Credo is a fantastic mapset, and easily one of the best classic-styled wads released in the last few years. Hopefully Townsend's decision to end development on the megawad doesn't mean we've seen the last of him.

    • Skeune - Olroda
      Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 635.83 KB -
      Reviewed by: walter confalonieri
      A medium sized techbase inspired by the Marathon game series according by the author, but instead a dark, puzzle-ish map with some new strange audio effects that replace the original zombie growlings. There's a lot of height difference and a contrast of "bright" textures with dark lighting for this layout, and as I mentioned before it uses lots of switches and height puzzles. There's also a minor work of eye-candy to make the level more pleasing to see.

      Monster placement is OK and uses only former human troopers and sergeants with a chaingunner and some imps at the end of the level, but the health is really low in here; just be careful, even with the low-tier monster usage.

      Anyway, this is just a simple anonymous map without anything groundbreaking, just your classic techbase with a puzzle twist and some weird joke that I don't get, but pisses off some guy that gives this level 0 stars on /idgames. Isn't anything that atrocious to play, but it is something that you just give a play and leave, nothing else.

    • Nazi Attack (natta.wad) - Fever (Oldcpv3)
      Doom 2 - Single Player - GZDoom - 26.92 KB
      Reviewed by: Voros
      Nazi Attack is a three-map replacement WAD for Doom 2, filling in the slots of MAP01, MAP02, MAP03.

      It's dull and short. These two words are all you need to know.

      MAP01 spawns you in a square room with 5 enemies. You kill them then hump the walls until you find the door, then try taking on the next square room filled with Wolf SS and Shotgun guys. Then exit.

      MAP02 spawns you in the middle of another horde (in a square room), but you are given a plasma rifle this time, so just hose them down and exit.

      MAP03 is laughably easy. Just some tight corridors with enemies usually encountered one at a time. Exit switch is on the left passageway.

      Total time: 1 minute. Maximum.

      And what was the point of taking the old HUD font from Freedoom? It's really displeasing to look at.

      I wouldn't really bother downloading this. It's a good thing it's a first map by the author, so I can forgive the poor quality of this.

    • NH4 - TimeOfDeath
      Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 162.76 KB -
      Reviewed by: Voros
      NH4 is a Doom 2 WAD for MAP01 and MAP02.

      This is the fourth No Health WAD from the author. Two slaughterfest maps at your disposal.

      The detailing in both maps is well done. MAP01 looks like it takes place at the bottom of a bloodfall, and MAP02 is like the underground bottom of a toxic fall, which forks into one toxic pool. Atmospheric, check.

      The geometry of MAP01 is bearable. There is a lot of space here for you to take cover against the Cyberdemons, Barons and Arch-Viles coming your way. But the Revenants? Kill them all, or die trying. MAP02 on the other hand, is so... tight. Mobility is something you'll need a lot more on this map.

      There are two new tracks for the maps also, and they are pretty dang good. Even though they seem like alternate guitar riffs, they really fit with the constant demon slaying, pumping you up for the next battle.

      Demon placement here is typical for a slaughterfest: demons in outrageous numbers. The first map starts you off "easy", by giving you the BFG with full ammo and lots of space (well, barely at first). MAP02 treads on a different path. This time you have to use cover more often and with medium-tier weapons mostly, in dark, claustrophobic pathways. But the weapons and ammo provided are enough, and the demos prove it.

      Overall, these two maps are pretty good slaughter maps. Feel free to check this out, if you like slaughtering mass numbers of demons.

    • Zanko Miron! - mafyoos
      Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 2.48 MB -
      Reviewed by: gaspe
      Zanko Miron! is a wad of three maps, of which every one is based around the Doom liquids, except lava. We have a brick facility with water, nukage has the classic E1 techbase, and to match the blood there's a hellish-like industrial complex inside a cave. The maps look a bit bare and empty; as you progress it improves, but overall there's a nice IWAD feel that makes the things a little better. Gameplay isn't very difficult but there are some nice traps along the way. This is a simple and short wad with some good and fun moments, though it hasn't anything that is really remarkable.

    • Fort Tiamat - Gran-D-Knight
      Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 30.84 KB -
      Reviewed by: gaspe
      The author himself states that this isn't one of his best works; honestly I don't know what and how his other works are, but I can see why he's saying that. The overall feel is that the map is rushed, as some things could have been better if they were developed in a more thoughtful manner. Both gameplay and visuals don't offer so much to the player; the look is very basic, and you won't be really engaged in the combat. I can't recommend this map, and good luck to the author for the next time.

    The /newstuff Chronicles is a usually-weekly roundup of new items uploaded to the /idgames archive, and it is written entirely by community members like you. If you wish to contribute, the /newstuff Review Center is the place to do so. Register on the Doomworld Forums first if you don't already have an account, because you need one to submit reviews. Special thanks goes to the nearly 300 users who have submitted reviews over the past several years.

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    Holy shit, I was not expecting such a glowing review!

    What basically happened was: SLaVE. That happened. Whilst making 100 small arena maps for the game (which, I'll remind you, is a Doom-engine/3DGE game) I learned a lot more about encounter design and the flow of fights. I came back to Nex Credo, and (after a few tweaks like charitably placing a few chainguns where there weren't previously) decided that I could do so much better.

    In fact, I felt that if I made new maps they'd be too different to what I already had here so what was the point? Polish the thing (although, whoops, forget to record new demos) and release.

    Thank you so much Not Jabba! And no, the Doom mapping scene hasn't seen the last of me. :D

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    Voros said:

    • NH4 - TimeOfDeath
      Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 162.76 KB - (img)
      Reviewed by: Voros
      There are two new tracks for the maps also, and they are pretty dang good. Even though they seem like alternate guitar riffs, they really fit with the constant demon slaying, pumping you up for the next battle.

    Irresponsibly bumping this thread to say that I recently recorded live versions of the NH4 music with my band on this album: https://nostrilcaverns.bandcamp.com/album/spatial-lacerations-2017

    map01 music is track 58
    map02 music is track 59

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