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jerrysheppy

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  1. jerrysheppy

    Abandoned Community Projects

    *TSoZD has entered the chat*
  2. jerrysheppy

    Toxic Leek (A highly toxic Doom II map)

    Just a quick, friendly pro-tip: your screenshots will look better if you turn off the visible highlighting and thing bounding boxes in DB's 3D mode. There are hotkeys that you can quickly tap to turn them off, take your screenshots, and turn them back on.
  3. jerrysheppy

    Boaty McBoatwad - /idgames

    And here I am at MAP16! This map was one I've seen billed as being a slaughtermap, or at least slaughtermap-adjacent (slaughtermap-lite? I don't remember the exact terms that were used). Anyway, I found to my pleasant surprise that it actually doesn't seem very slaughtermap-py, at least to my sensibilities and at least on the more tourist-friendly skill level where I played. Don't get me wrong: the caliber and number of monsters are exactly what one would wish for from the grand finale of a megawad, and there are quite a few pleasantly adrenaline-rushing setpiece battles, but I never encountered the sort of negative experiences I've come to expect from the "slaughtermap" moniker, where fights are choreographed with the sadism of a Kaizo Mario stage, or you have to run around holding down the BFG trigger whilst scarfing up bulk cell packs like it's March 2020 and you're grabbing bundles of toilet paper off the store shelves. I don't think this map even has a non-secret BFG, which probably speaks well to its character, insofar as the mapper (correctly) doesn't think you'll need it. Aesthetically, it's great. It manages to look elegant and clean (if "clean" is the appropriate descriptor for this love letter to OTEX's grungy concrete and metal ranges) while being admirably reserved with its use of actual fine detailing. You're not really here for sector sightseeing (though I did a bit of it here and there); you're here to blast monsters, and the visuals never get in the way of that. When you do actually stop and notice something, it's because it's especially cute and clever, like the pinky ambush that streams from the mouth of a furnace, or the boat's little journey. On that note, while a couple of the maps in this project have used the venerable conveyor illusion to give us a boat or a convoy sailing perpetually down some sort of channel—like MAP14, which I just commented on—I do believe that this is the first and only one to have a ship start at one port, get underway for a while, and arrive at a destination. I haven't yet cracked open the editor for this map but at first glance I'm honestly not sure how it was done; it may well be a commonly-known trick in Boom circles but it's arcane magick to me. One note on a bug/possible hardlock, though it's either already been fixed for the release version or is too late to fix now. On the Arch-Vile teleport ambush just before you go belowdecks, I "solved" the encounter by semi-intentionally doing an Arch-Vile jump back out of the area and onto the deck below. But then, of course, I couldn't get back in, so I had to noclip to continue. Maybe this is a consequence of GZDoom's archvile behavior and isn't a problem in the primary intended port? I've heard that GZDoom buggers up archvile jumps somehow, but I don't know exactly how so.
  4. jerrysheppy

    Some more Doom 4 stuff got leaked

    Damn, I want this game to be complete and real so badly. I wouldn't rather have it than 2016 but I'd definitely rather have it than Eternal; it looks like it would have had most of the good hell-on-earth aesthetics of Eternal without the cringe.
  5. jerrysheppy

    Boaty McBoatwad - /idgames

    Still doing my playthrough commentary! Just took several days off because of, you know, everything. MAP14 - First map to really lean into this type of scroller-based illusion (I think MAP04 had it as well, but it didn't really make much difference to the theme of the level). This is a type of special effect with a very old pedigree (dating back to at least Blood) but this map uses it extremely well. The canal-bound convoy you make your way down starts with some fairly prosaic, if attractively made, cargo barges, and ends up with some... rather more interesting objects, including at least one non-watergoing vessel and one watergoing non-vessel. It's all very nice and easy on the eyes. Gameplay is likewise quite enjoyable, though frankly a somewhat more difficult map might've suited the antepenultimate map slot a bit more; again this isn't something that the author can really be blamed for. I might have used a simpler starry sky or even just a pitch-black void rather than the actual sky of choice, which, while attractive, looks odd on this map—the sky can't, of course, show parallax in Boom (I don't think?) so the eye concludes that those trees must be very far away, which in turn implies that they must be quite implausibly large even by the somewhat lax standards of Doom realism. MAP15 - jerrysheppy: You know, some of these maps are pretty lightweight for being almost at the end of a megawad. Scotty: "Gangbang Galleon" proves aptly named; the monsters never actually got to have their way with me—not for lack of trying—but it's a welcome increase in intensity with a good dose of heavy baddies, some adrenaline-pumping ambushes, and most importantly a healthy supply of ammunition for dealing with all of them. Equally importantly in this Doomer's book, the map is lovely to look at in concept and execution. What we have here is a particularly large wooden dreadnought of some sort—I daresay it's the largest proper vessel in the entire mapset, though "Beezelboat"'s whale might have it beat out—docked at some sort of huge sea-cave port facility, perhaps the secret island lair of a demonic mastermind who wants to shake down the UAC for one meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeellion dollars. The aesthetic occupies that sort of liminal existence that we see in much of Plutonia and other famous wads; not quite a full-on hell filled with fire, marble sigils, and torture chambers, but still a baroque and distinctly hostile otherworld, where the seas are corrosive blood and dark metal trim rubs elbows with ancient stone and wood. On to MAP16, which seems like an undertaking unto itself so I'll write that one up in my next post.
  6. This isn't really a technical limitations problem, it's a Sandy Petersen problem and/or a texturing problem. Odyssey of Noises is much more plausible as a portion of a residential or commercial district than Downtown or Suburbs. The Unholy Trinity looks excellent (for 1994 in the vanilla Doom engine) on the exteriors, where the author made textures that actually resemble terrestrial building facades; it falters on the inside where the author makes much heavier use of ill-suited stock textures, which goes to illustrate the point!
  7. jerrysheppy

    Boaty McBoatwad - /idgames

    The thing is I think map 13 could actually have been somewhat harder, for normal definitions of hard, and been fine. For instance, the wall opening with the swarm of revenants in the latter half of the map; that fight could've easily been even more intense and still been reasonable on medium-to-high difficulty levels, or there could've been more such setpiece battles. The cyberdemon pressuring you from the start of the map is also a fine, even good, design decision in itself. A large expanse of damaging liquid is hardly unfair in itself (though making it blue water is still a dick move 99% of the time and I will die on this hill). The path up a cliff being less than immediately obvious is not unfair or even especially frustrating in itself. It's the unfortunate confluence of all of them that started to tip my 'the mapper is being a dick, and not in a good way' sensor. Nothing personal.
  8. jerrysheppy

    Boaty McBoatwad - /idgames

    MAP12: Finally a proper Hell map (besides yours truly's) and it's a boat, er, beaut! Probably the most creative definition of boat to make its appearance so far, as it resembles a gigantic infernal whale rather than anything you or I would recognize as a seagoing vessel, but there's no denying that Doom's hell shows us flesh and machine blurred in every other respect—so why not have a demonic leviathan plying the lightless blood seas in lieu of a hull of wood or metal? Few details are spared in the ingenious sectorwork construction, from the eyes that "blink", to the rotting brown peg-teeth, to the spine running aft from the head. Even the less immediately identifiable anatomy—like some sort of strange organ that invites uncomfortable comparisons to the infamous visuals of the lotus seed pod—is perfectly, creepily evocative. The anatomy gets less realist (whatever that means here) at the end, where some sort of skyward-gazing skull occupies the whale's posterior with torrents of blood pouring from its eye sockets, and I'm not really sure what the actual exit is supposed to be. But it still looks great, and that's what counts! Gameplay is an afterthought in this review, but not, I should stress, to the level itself: the mapper knows how to provide a steadily engaging series of encounters without letting the level as a whole wear out its welcome. MAP13: This map has some fantastic visuals and an interesting progression path, and on paper the combat should've been right up my alley given the types and distributions of monsters. Unfortunately, the gameplay left an extremely bad taste in my mouth early on, from which my impression of the map never fully recovered. The route at the start was just non-obvious enough that it took me a frustratingly long time to find it while under rocket fire from the Cyberdemon. Making matters worse, I ended up seeing the shootable switches and assuming they were in some way related to the progression path since it wasn't immediately obvious that they were opening secrets, so I chased that red herring for a while. I really think that even slightly non-obvious progression paths and (effectively) unkillable monster turrets are not two great tastes that taste great together; either one of them would've been fine in isolation, but together they're just a recipe for frustration. To this gets added the fact that the "pure" blue water was inexplicably damaging; I thought at first that this was the sector 1288 that Caleb13 was referring to a few posts above, since it seemed so illogical... but I cracked it open in the editor and nope, it's sector 1204. Having the visually uncontaminated water (as opposed to the demonic blood beginning to leak into it) damage me was, as I said, so unintuitive that it immediately felt like I was being punished by a bug or oversight, whether or not that was actually the case, and that just compounded my frustration. If I hadn't been able to IDDQD so that I could look around and work things out without either having my health drained away by the pristine blue water or eating a rocket, I probably would've just skipped to the next map after the first couple of minutes or so. Which is a shame since this is such a finely crafted map otherwise. Just to clarify since I know new versions have been posted since: I am playing beta1b here.
  9. jerrysheppy

    Boaty McBoatwad - /idgames

    MAP10: Excellent, atmospheric start with the long fall into some caverns that have been redecorated just a little bit by the demons. I admit it took me a few moments to realize that what my brain initially parsed as some sort of weird staircase was, in fact, an ancient shipwreck embedded in the earth at an angle. This is a gimmick that really, really wanted UDMF to allow for a properly sloping structure, but since that unfortunately wasn't an option here, I still give it an A for creativity and effort. Otherwise, the map was a nice romp, with a good array of surprises to keep me pleasurably on my toes. Definitely feels like it earns its keep as a proper level rather than "just" being a cute vignette like MAP02. MAP11: Our first Boot of the Untersee variety! The interior area is quite nice, with good sectorwork and texturing, and manages to convincingly give the feeling of the confined environs of a submarine without actually being realistically cramped , which would probably be atrociously bad for gameplay. I'm not sure reinforced concrete is actually the medium of choice for bulkheads on a submarine, but no one ever accused the UAC of having good engineering practices. There's neat little touches like the window onto an underwater vista with the bottoms of icebergs floating silently in the dark, which helps establish early on that we're not just in some sort of landbased bunker complex (as which, incidentally, this would still work very well). Once you step out onto the deck, the execution stumbles just a little bit through no fault of the mapper's; the icy cliffs and caves are still great but like the map before it, even a very basic set of slopes in UDMF would've helped realize the concept far more nicely. C'est la vie. Difficulty is pretty much pitch-perfect for a "breezy" MAP11. I didn't find the yellow key after a moderate amount of searching, but it's cool that there's apparently that sort of optional exploration for those more perspicacious than me. I did find the chainsaw, which I was surprised wasn't tagged as a secret.
  10. Definitions of megawad aside, 11 maps isn't necessarily a completely meaningless number for a map set—it constitutes the first two "episodes" (defined by intermission screen) of Doom II. That said, as far as I know from the description, the OP is just packaging up whatever Oblige farts out, so assuming that's correct I'm not sure why you wouldn't go for 32 or whatever since it's essentially the same amount of "effort".
  11. I'm glad that the OP specifies it can be downloaded for free, just in case anyone might have been in the market for someone else's Oblige wad but was scared off by the prospect of paying for the privilege
  12. jerrysheppy

    Boaty McBoatwad - /idgames

    MAP09: You, sir (madam?), are some kind of mad genius. Take my figurative upvote and please use your powers for good instead of evil from now on.
  13. Gotta be E2M9. Maybe it would have been memorable in terms of the intensity of the fights, for 1993, but absolutely nothing else earns its keep. Dead Simple at least gestures vaguely in the direction of some effort with the map geometry, and the moving platforms and 666/667 specials add some interest and novelty.
  14. jerrysheppy

    Boaty McBoatwad - /idgames

    MAP07: Like MAP03, this stands out in terms of quality and would be right at home in any discerning community project, not just ones where a sector boat is the price of admission! "Vanilla" bases generally aren't my favorite environments in Doom but this one puts OTEX's computer and industrial textures through their paces so nicely that it's hard to complain. Difficulty is a little bit on the easy side but still much closer to an ideal balance than some of the maps; there's a steady flow of action but it's divvied up nicely between chaingun fodder and heavier monsters. MAP08: Took me all of a couple of seconds to discover that the water here was dangerously cold, which I tend to think is a bit of a dick move without some greater sort of signposting, but it's not as though it actually ended up making a meaningful difference here as there's no way to get yourself stuck in the water at the start here. Like MAP07 before it this map boasts (boats?) both attractive texturing and pleasurable gameplay... in fact, if this were a more cohesively themed project these maps would still fit very well right next to one another as part of an industrial shipping episode, being so close in aesthetics and difficulty. I tend to think there could have been a few more heavies in the Imp swarm at the end but the ease with which I was able to detract them didn't really take away from my experience. The one real bone I have to pick with the visuals is at the edges of the level, where the horizon is too close to look good (especially with the icebergs being cut off suddenly) and the light levels taper off to blackness in a way that doesn't make any sense against the bright skybox.
  15. jerrysheppy

    Boaty McBoatwad - /idgames

    Yeah, like I would say my own map is "breezy" despite having some high-octane monsters because the player should never really be at a shortage of health or ammo (especially if not pistol starting), never needs to kite 20+ revenants, etc. It's actually very much the style of gameplay I enjoy, so it was nice to feel like I was being invited to submit that sort of a laid-back experience. OTOH, you have map 16 which is per descriptions (I've not played nor watched a video of it yet) something like a slaughtermap-lite, and apparently didn't get rejected for it... certainly not saying it ought to have been, but just goes to show you the limitations of a relatively subjective mandate like that. Compounding the problem is that per-mapslot difficulty is the sort of thing you literally can't give good feedback on without knowing where the map is going to end up in the WAD. If I had playtested Ship Ping, I might've said "oh, this'll be a perfect intro level" but that wouldn't have ended up being useful feedback. And if I said "this is balanced well for a MAP01, but might be too easy for after the first couple of maps" that's still not useful for the mapper because they don't know where exactly they'll end up. Sorry for what feels like a derail into a discussion about community project balancing practices that probably deserves its own thread. :P I'll play some more maps later, probably tomorrow, and have more to say about the actual boatwad!
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