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About Zakken

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  1. Zakken

    A question about "terrywads"

    The day someone discovers a way of doing RCE in any Doom port is going to be a catastrophic day indeed...
  2. Zakken

    Rott!Zone Deathmatch wad *Updated release

    This is quality stuff! I'm impressed at how modern these maps look and feel for a Boom-compatible set.
  3. Boy, am I glad to get gotted! Now I'm tempted to return the favour...
  4. This reads like a troll post, but in the off-chance that it's not... what the heck kind of dystopian take is this? Just because there are wads *you* don't see any need in checking out does not mean everyone else shouldn't either, and just because *you* think most of them aren't worth playing does not mean everyone else should also be as disinterested. You're in for a rude awakening if you think all of today's most revered mappers came out of the womb creating genre-defining maps of unmatched quality... I honestly can't think of a more effective way to completely stagnate wad development in this community and prevent newcomers from actually releasing their first projects and having tangible ways of improving their craft than your devilish scheme of screening every wad for "quality" and author branding, so good job...? Also, there is quite literally nothing wrong with deviating from the norm -- that's how we were able to witness many groundbreaking works, some of which even populate the Cacowards. Maybe you're content with your conformist ideals, but pushing them onto others the way you are is a mistake. Lastly, since when does /idgames have a storage space crisis? Who put you in charge? In summary, every instance of "we" you wrote in your post is demonstrably false.
  5. I'm torn, because there are many things I like and some things I dislike about pretty much every game featured. Wolfenstein 3D has an incredibly addicting and satisfying gameplay loop and its level design is mostly really tight and creative given their limitations, but it is also greatly held back by its highly erratic damage system, which allows even regular guards to deal upwards of 60 damage to you with a single shot under the unluckiest circumstances, and the mutants who are absolute bastards that break the game's already fickle balance with their insane reaction times and silent behavior. Doom has much better balance than Wolf3D and features an enjoyable, action-packed gameplay loop. It is also elevated by its mostly iconic level design, but it suffers a little from becoming too easy once it's figured out, with the exception of episode 4. Nightmare is a meme skill level and not a fairly uninteresting and cheap way of amping up the game's difficulty. Doom II's additions are great and much-needed: the super shotgun is legendary in every conceivable way and the new monsters provide different designs than just "alien who shoots a fireball at you" and allow the player to devise all-new strategies against them. The level design is, however, much less striking or interesting than its prequel. Certain levels genuinely feel like a drag to push through, which I hadn't felt more than a couple of times in Doom 1, and the general scarcity of new textures and sound effects make it even harder for them to stand out on their own. The single-player campaign would've been much tighter if half a dozen of its smaller and less polished maps were scrapped altogether. Heretic is a gorgeous game with top-notch sprite and texture work all around, exacerbated by an arsenal that feels more balanced and fine-tuned than even Doom's and A+ level design that is memorable from start to finish, which remains true even on episodes 4 and 5. It is also considerably harder than Doom in parts, forcing the player to engage with its inventory system, whose implementation still holds up fairly well. It baffles me how so many people think of Heretic as this lesser Doom clone when it actually surpasses Doom in most criteria. My only gripe with the game is its lack of resources, which means it doesn't take long for you to have seen all of its ~100 textures, and the monster beastiary no longer holds any surprises for you after the three main episodes. A pet peeve I also have is the levels' overreliance on having so many switches that you can't be reasonably expected to understand what each singular one really does, so you're incentivized to mindlessly push all switches you see at random and hope the exit shows itself eventually. All things considered, however, with what few resources they had to work with, they still developed one hell of a game. Hexen perpetuates the incredible artistry seen previously in Heretic, although its much more accentuated focus on brown, grey and dark green colors to create its dark, depressing gothic world does make its aesthetic merits a more contentious topic than before (I personally lean towards not being a big fan). The player class idea is groundbreaking and works somewhat well, but it's hard to argue in favor of a measly 4 weapons total to work with throughout such a long campaign. The small variety of enemies may not have been as bad in Heretic, but in Hexen where the visuals are more samey, the weapons are few and backtracking is a core aspect of the gameplay, it can get very tedious. Despite some aspects of the game being undercooked, however, it's still fairly enjoyable to progress through each hub, opening up new areas, beating up monsters as your preferred class, getting more resources and finding secret levels. I greatly appreciate the overall level design not being too complicated to the point of getting lost and not knowing where to go next -- restraining themselves and keeping the hubs easy enough to complete so long as you're paying attention was definitely one of their best decisions when developing Hexen. Deathkings is also a great step up in difficulty while still keeping the game enjoyable! TNT: Evilution definitely has its few clunky and poorly thought-out levels, but I still liked how ambitious it was, creating these larger maps that had interesting architecture and fresh new gimmicks. Only few levels were genuinely boring to play, and it was still overall a very polished, well-crafted and even a bit innovative megawad by 1996 standards. Plutonia's approach to difficulty is a lot of fun, and encourages the player to study the maps and make a science out of Doom's gameplay loop to really maximise one's success in its campaign, which I personally find very rewarding. My only real gripe with the entirety of Final Doom is that, despite the new textures seen in both wads (which are really nice), there are no new items, weapons or enemies at all. Oh well! Doom 3's atmosphere and level design is amazing. A lot of attention and care was put into fully realizing its "B-movie scary" aesthetic, and it shows. The monster, weapon designs and sound work are appropriately oppressive, inventive and satisfying. Despite its unparalleled presentation, however, the gameplay is frustratingly inconsistent, what with the player taking hits unfairly (like you think you dodged a fireball but you actually didn't) and weapons having wonky RNG (encouraging you to drop weaker weapons ASAP and rely solely on heavy hitters like the Chaingun, Plasma Gun and Rocket Launcher once you have them). Understandably, the game kind of tries to apply horror game design 101 in making the player feel underpowered and insecure, but Doom 3 actually being kind of easy betrays that goal, and rendering certain gameplay aspects inconsistent seems like a cheap way of causing stress to the player, all other things considered. Overall still a very fun game, however, especially after really "getting it" in terms of killing enemies and using your weapons to their fullest potential. Doom 2016 is solid in pretty much every aspect, be it gameplay, sound, graphics or level design. It is the most polished Doom yet, and complaints I had about previous entries such as having a few unremarkable maps or inconsistent mechanics are fortunately not present here -- everything is well-designed, considered and balanced, truly an airtight package of awesome. My problem with D2016, this time around, is that all of this polish and perfection came at the cost of a shorter game than its predecessors, and once you know how to 100% its campaign, not much else is left to do with it. The arcade mode does little to improve its replay value, but that's still better than nothing. I still need to play Doom 64, Hexen II and Strife, but they're relatively low on my priority list for the moment. Doom Eternal as well, but for that, I think I will wait until I can beef up my PC some more. :) If I were to put all of these in a tier list, it would look more or less like this: S: Doom 2016, Heretic A: Doom 3, Plutonia, Ultimate Doom B: Hexen, Hexen: Deathkings, TNT: Evilution C: Doom II, Wolfenstein 3D
  6. Zakken

    How Heavily Do You Weigh Gameplay Vs Visuals?

    Presentation is a huge factor when it comes to drawing my attention to take the first step towards trying out a wad. Something that looks clearly distinct and avant-garde like Sunder, Eviternity or BTSX is far more likely to draw me in than your typical oldschool mapset made with vanilla aesthetics in mind that have been seen countless times before. Doom does have the advantage of having an inherently enjoyable core experience, so as others pointed out, one would almost have to intentionally screw up the gameplay loop to make it not fun to play. In summary, my favorite wads are always those that offer the best overall "experience", which is often associated with top-notch visuals and music front and center.
  7. I assume you're still allowed to watch Doom and interact with Doom communities? Either way, I'd take the money without a second thought.
  8. Zakken

    Did you find Doom scary when it first came out?

    I used to be scared of E1M8 because of the big star arena and the Barons being enemies you'd never seen before up until that point. That trap ending was also dread-inducing for obvious reasons. Episode 3 as a whole also scared me a lot as a kid. The game's 320x200 resolution really sprung my fertile imagination at the time and made its general visuals of hellish mountains, marble walls and fleshy environments out to be far more oppressive than they really were. My first experiences with Doom vary from a few years after its release (shareware episode) to a whole decade after it came out (full version), but since I was a kid without a meaningful body count of FPSs to speak of, my initial perspective was probably next to the same as those who were around to play it back in 1993-94.
  9. Zakken

    what doom source port is your favourite?

    PrBoom+. Its performance is amazing, its alternative HUD is nice to look at, and I personally find the setting menus very comfy to navigate.
  10. Zakken

    What demon annoys you the most?

    Revenants, no question. Their homing rockets are always tricky to dodge (even though they have the most basic tracking ever), and it is very painful when you try to bait them into punching you and they decide to blow your face off with another rocket instead...
  11. Zakken

    Does anyone unironically use I'm Too Young To Die

    I used to play not just Doom, but every videogame I would come across on the easiest skill level all the time, maybe because I was lazy and just wanted to beat all games with as little effort involved as possible. It wasn't until around 2013 where I stopped being a goober and started actually picking skill levels in games that were appropriate for me. Since then, I've always played Doom on UV, sometimes harder if I'm playing a mod that adds extra skill levels. I do this even for wads that are way too hard for me to beat, because I love torturing myself.
  12. Zakken

    Anyone got any tips for getting better at Doom?

    You may also want to surf the Doom Wiki and read the technical details of weapons and monsters, so that you learn more about how they work and get better at predicting their behaviour. The wiki also contains lots of useful information on Doom maps as well as many popular custom mappacks, if there's any specific map you're stuck on. :)
  13. Zakken

    The thread that belongs to oblivion

    Not really, although I've always had to live with the lingering concern that I could always do more for the community I'm a part of, and I often have to consciously strike a balance between overworking myself and lazing around, to make sure that I maintain a constant stream of productivity without having to say hello to the usual burnout symptoms. Above all else, I think being able to meet and connect with other people with a shared interest is the most worthwhile aspect of any community, so as long as you're enjoying yourself and finding friends around here, you're already validating your entire involvement with those around you here. I believe content creation should come from a place of artistic passion and amibition, and while that's definitely one such means to accomplish this social goal, you should never approach it with the idea that you won't be appreciated or recognised unless you create something. No such thing as meritoracy!
  14. I get tired of the traditional Doom aesthetic very quickly. This is an oversimplification of what constitutes "Doom aesthetic", but whenever I see a WAD that's predominantly brown, green and grey in most places, for example, I'm usually immediately turned away from it. Understandably, a great majority of the community are big fans of every aspect of Doom's level design, and from the mappers' perspective, it's easier to work on themes they have a lot of reference material to study from and popular custom textures that fit those themes than tackling aesthetics that haven't been tried a lot or that are difficult to pull off in the engine itself, but with all due respect, it's difficult not to see most well-known WADs as derivative works of each other as a result of typical Doom techbase/hell designs being explored so many times over. Conversely, I'm admittedly much more easily impressed by WADs that don't quite look like Doom, be them standard vanilla-compatible maps or full-blown GZDoom mods. For example, most of Hellcore 2.0 still blows my mind to this day with its urban settings, Epic 2's Egyptian architecture is incredible, and even Back to Saturn X E1's techbase style has a distinct pallette and artistic approach that I have a very soft spot for. Doom: The Golden Souls is one of my favourite GZDoom mods and its level design could not be more far removed from what Doom usually looks like, opting for Mario-esque bright and colourful styles and painstakingly ensuring that each level can easily be told apart from the others. With all that said, I am very happy to see a growing trend of well-crafted WADs making the rounds that look strikingly different or just plain strange over the past few years! Please keep embracing weirdness and unexplored design trends, dear mappers!!
  15. Zakken

    The 2020 Cacowards

    Congratulations to all of the winners and runner-ups! Very impressed by this year's picks. On the multiplayer side of things, I'd like to make a personal shout-out to Jumpmaze X as arguably one of the overall highest-quality releases of this year. Jumpmaze is a platforming-centred mapset for Doom originally released 11 years ago, and often served as one of the most played WADs online during that era (alongside Ghouls vs Humans and All Out War 2). To this day, it still sees activity with a fairly strong speedrunning community supporting it, and many Jumpmaze fan projects were made by other mappers since then (such as Jumpix and Advanced Jumpmaze), but for JM's original creator to come back and organise a brand-new mapset that, in my opinion, succeeded in becoming the most polished and fully-realised compilation seen thus far, as well as breathing new life into the scene cannot be understated -- it's a big milestone for a long-running mod that's fondly remembered even by those who don't actively play it anymore. Very excited for what 2021 will bring!