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About Magnusblitz

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  1. Took a quick whirl with IDDQD on (no way I could ever finish this map on UV normally lol). Looks great, especially the vista at the start being able to see all the buildings floating around. Only things I noticed is that there were some lighting issues in the hub area (where the light 'bleeds' into the other sectors sort of like a slime trail, usually fixable by moving the vertexes of the offending sectors around and re-saving the map). Also the columns in the blue key area weren't rendering properly. I was playing in ZDoom 2.8.1 though so might just be an old port issue.
  2. I gotta admit I kinda liked how small and contained the first E2M4 was, basically being the one big setpiece with the lock-in room with the barons, and that was it. This iteration seems a bit overstuffed and self-indulgent, with two lock-in fights and two 'hit the right switch and run' puzzles. And I think this is magnified by it feeling overly busy and self-indulgent visually - while the original does benefit from some polishing and extra detail, I feel there's a bit too much of it in places. Too many different colors, too much detailing... it was all a bit overwhelming IMO. As far as the puzzles go, I was actually most puzzled by the teleporter that lets you telefrag a baron and see the yellow key... I initially just thought the map had bugged out, took me awhile to figure out to shoot the wall behind me, heh. The red/blue caco room took me awhile because I thought you had to hit all the switches to get the lift to lower, before I finally realized the computer texture on the lift was a clue and I only had to hit the corresponding switch, with the others being dummies. Once that was clear, it was no trouble getting to the elevator. The puzzle at the end is pretty easy too IMO, takes a couple of experimental pushes to figure out each one does something different, and you only need to hit a couple to get out. I really didn't like the second lock-in fight with the cacos. First, I think it also takes away from the baron fight and feels a bit repetitive. Second, it was just too damn hard... took me a good 12-15 attempts before I finally beat it, and even then I was narrowly squeezing out with 12 health (should put a soulsphere in the exit room or something IMO). The baron fight is hard enough but at least there I feel like you can make the choice to circle around and take dips into the water that you can't really do with the lava here. Maybe UV is just too tough for me and I should try it on lower difficulties... though, to be fair, I think difficulty in general is all out of whack across the entire mapset, with some levels having UV at the same as the original IWAD level, while others seem to be balanced for modern-day pros, so it'd be unfair to single this map out. 'Tis the trouble with a community project I suppose though.
  3. Very good to see the rest of Limbo coming along... as galileo31dos01 pointed out I was having a brain fart and forgetting the difference between limit removing and Boom, so my ideas for any parts leading up to the final area weren't going to work. As for the center area, yup, of course, feel free to use it. I had been experimenting with a few more iterations/angles, see below. The circular hub might work the best though. Not sure if you want to stick with the 'well of souls' (wait, isn't that FDINO? oh no...) design in the center, I also tried one with a circular staircase to tie in a bit more with "Limbo as first circle of hell" in a way. I was thinking of surrounding the central structure with something more as well... maybe just some additional marble supports to make it more of a free-standing structure, or could surround it with a red rock spire and make it seem like it's jutting out of hell into this level. I also was trying some different designs on the columns, by flattening them and adding a little candle pillar to make them look more like graves. Not sure if that's preferable to the square monoliths (bit more alien/eerie). As for the light angle, you're saying the shadows should be wider? What I did was draw lines from the exact center of the lava circle to the far outer wall, connecting on where the 'light line' hit the corner of the pillar. It often is a very close angle (too close sometimes - if the pillar isn't exactly at the right angle facing the circle one of the walls will often be at the wrong angle, so some of the lines were at a wider angle to avoid the linedefs merging) but I think that's right, depending on the distance from the light source -- at least from some very basic experiments with my phone flashlight and a deck of cards in dark room, haha. One thing I was wondering about is that if the lava wall is taller than the columns, then technically the shadows should end at some point before hitting the far wall. But it depends on what happens with the final middle structure I suppose, or could just leave it this way out of simplicity. udino-e3m7-v3-d.rar
  4. I do have another iteration of E3M7 I want to try, that does have some different areas (tech, more halfway corrupted, etc) though it's more linear than a hub. But still separate sections that could easily be turned into a hub, and have other people graft stuff in if needed. Looks like action 85 is just 'scroll texture right' so no problems there.
  5. I've attached the (very) rough draft of my last idea for E3M7 if anyone else wants to see it (needs to be run with the UDINO alpha for the lava fall texture; assume larger/longer fight at the end). Dobu made an accurate point that right now the two 'wings' sections, revisiting the two Anomaly levels pre-hell, isn't very compelling. Could maybe go the other direction and completely hell-ify them (and even fill with 'normal' enemies), but that point it might be straying too far from the Limbo theme. udino-e3m7-v2e.rar Also FWIW I didn't really think of E1M8 (except the last area obviously) as really hell-ish, more just... damaged, with all the red cracks and such in the architecture. I figured the red/blue walls and the red puddles in front were leaking reactor walls or something, not hell portals. I could be completely off on this of course.
  6. Magnusblitz

    All About Secret Maps

    I generally prefer secret maps to be 'something different,' which could be a lot of different things: gimmicky/experimental gameplay, thematically difference, a joke/meta-commentary, etc. So most of the IWAD maps would qualify... and probably helped shaped my opinion of what secret maps should be. Fortress of Mystery has the infighting gimmick (and a good "oh shit!" moment at the time), Warrens has a thematic gimmick (also a good twist the first time), the Wolfenstein maps are a gag/homage, and the TNT maps are thematically different and somewhat novel themes. Plutonia, I give a pass to at the time, since "super hard" maps weren't really a thing yet. Now, though, I'm not a fan of the secret maps just being a designated 'hard slot' map. It's a tough line to walk -- if it's challenging but just enough, sure, a player will feel accomplished when beating it. But for those who find such difficult maps outside their skill range, it makes finding the secret not feel like a reward, but a punishment. Yeah, once you know, you can skip it, but then it feels like you're missing content, since a level is... well, a level. Feels different than say, playing a WAD on Hurt Me Plenty and "missing out" on playing it on UV or -fast or some other challenge. As @Nine Inch Heels points out, you can find whole WADs of that stuff now, so for those who like that style, it seems better to just keep those in their own releases instead of including them as part of an otherwise easier WAD. I do think that because of the way the secret levels are hard-coded, there are some interesting things you can do with them, such as the "alternate path" that @Doomkid and @Dark Pulse mentioned. I think that's perfectly valid too. Part of me does feel like making a megawad carries certain expectations, like seeing what someone can come up with creatively for the two secret maps... but a branching storyline is another form of creativity. @cannonball already mentioned it, but one of my favorites that immediately came to mind was Doom 2 Reloaded's MAP32, with its progression of secrets and seeing how far you can figure it out, being able to exit at any time when you get stuck. Kinda like "The Impossible Quiz" in WAD form.
  7. I'm assuming the objective is to get to the top switches (near the BFGs), hit the switch to lower the spiderdemon cage, jump off across the black platform to the flesh platform, fire a few rockets, then run the circuit again? You can get a bit of a headstart by running up to the zombiemen and letting them kill each other, then sneaking by without firing a shot. Not that it helped me any, of course, but food for thought to switching them to imps. The skill changes don't really make a difference IMO, because the biggest issue isn't the imps and barons teleporting in, it's the cyberdemons (though maybe I just suck). Is it intended to have the player sit there and take them out, or just avoid/ignore them while making the circuit? Hmm, I guess you could make them infight with the barons...
  8. I might have some free time to take a whirl this weekend. But of course if dobu would like to do something else it's all his.
  9. That's an intriguing idea, Gez, and I think it'd work since it's the penultimate map (well, of the first three original episodes, at least). Early on I had the idea of a big interconnected ancient Greek/Roman-style city (similar to Dante's take on it, though I had misimagined 'castle' as whole city), and I was imagining having it mostly empty (or maybe with some small enemies, zombiemen and/or lost souls) and letting the player explore before unleashing a giant wave of enemies to fight off while waiting for the exit to open. Then dobu had an idea for taking sections of that ancient city and scattering them across a black void. I wonder if something like that might work - taking sections of other UDINO levels from the first three episodes. Not sure if it'd work better as segments suspended in a void, or actually fused together, but the idea of keeping it low light and somber fits, and gameplay wise, could still keep that creepy/haunted feel early on, let the player explore, grab keys, then unlock the last fight/exit... hmm
  10. Magnusblitz

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Doom Zero

    MAP08: Module Base 100% kills, 6/6 secrets Very obviously a Tricks and Traps homage, with quite a few IWAD areas (and some that aren't - not sure if they're from other WADs or wholly original). So, not a lot to say about most of it. One thing that stuck out was the blue key secret - could've just hidden the blue armor in the nook, but instead there's a switch that lowers the key to reveal the hidden area. This sort of design philosophy - putting in some extra work with a cool piece of moving map geography, instead of just an easy door or whatever - is something I've seen a lot in this WAD and appreciate. MAP09: Ancient Archives 99% kills, 4/7 secrets Given the name, I expected a library... there is one later, but there's a metal sewer to begin with. Guess we're taking the back route in. As I said for MAP08, this one has another interesting design bit at the start, with the two buttons to raise/lower the sludge and allow you to reach the two wings needed to open up the main door. A lot of authors would've just placed two hallways or two doors. The constantly rising floor to the exit is a nice signpost too. The actual combat was relatively ho-hum. It's possible to jump to the red key without needing to open up the gargoyle wall. Why the hell would someone make Revenants have the AV pain sound? MAP10: Leap Gates 94% kills, 4/8 secrets Lots of diagonal jumping here, so a bit of leaping in addition to the actual gates. The opening area is some pretty rote chaingunning in hallways, though you'll need to be careful with that AV to avoid running out of ammo if you get it too close to the corpses. The most interesting area is the horde of lost souls in darkness while you try to stay on the safe brown sludge, though truth be told I just ran through this as quickly as possible, heh. The final area was a bit of a downer, not much room to manuever and all the monsters are turrets, so it's just a lot dodging left and right and hope that infighting helps you out. I did really like the secret two-sided switch here though, interesting bit of logic needed to keep the teleport open and the columns up together. MAP11: Too Close to Home 100% kills, 4/5 secrets Ye olde downtown level. The buildings actually look pretty nice, nice details used architecturally to give the buildings some depth - for example, the building that holds the exit feels like the entrance to a courthouse with the stairs and columns. Aside from that, not much to say, progression is pretty obvious and the fights are nothing special. MAP12: Underland 100% kills, 2/6 secrets Seeing all the switches, I was worried this one might be complex, but it's nothing hard - just criss cross, slowly making your way higher and higher. What is kind of a pain is dealing with the monsters that come in, as the bridges are not very easy to dodge on without falling into that painful 20% lava. So the real trick is just figuring out the best way to get back to a side area where you can take on the monsters. I tried to sneak past the barons at first, but couldn't figure out the switch right away, so had to fall back on Mr. Rocket Launcher. The AV area was a ton of fun, probably could've used one or two more of them to really put me on edge, but the circular design with lots of openings worked well.
  11. Magnusblitz

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Doom Zero

    Catching up... MAP04: Triple Town 99% kills, 1/6 This was an okay map... didn't like that you can do the areas in the 'wrong' order, such as going into the pinkie area before grabbing the berserk pack. If you do that you can basically kiss your ammo goodbye. The middle portion was good as the red room is a good fight, but the end with the caverns was pretty anticlimatic. MAP05: The Pits 100% kills, 6/7 secrets Roughly a map of thirds, with the first indoor area, the second outdoor area, and then the last hallway with the hell knights. Architecturally the first part is somewhat interesting but gameplay-wise it's pretty boring. It isn't really a puzzle, just clearing everything out in order, and that clearing gets boring fast with so much caco and hell noble meat. And if you're on a pistol start you'll probably end up using the chaingun for 90% of it because there's plentiful bullets and not much shotgun ammo. The RL and PG unlock at some point but I backtrack to grab them until the end. The second (outdoor) portion is much more interesting, with a decent fight (especially since the cacos can float over that wall!) and decent puzzle with the rising platform. Unfortunately the meat corridor at the end is lame, especially if you're stuck with the chaingun. MAP06: Echo Halls 100% kills, 1/2 secrets First things first, last map has a crusher exit but it really should have a death exit - makes a lot more sense to come into this map with no weapons than 9% health and a plentiful arsenal. That said, this is a cute little gimmick map that doesn't outstay its welcome. Another choice of keys here, and unlike MAP01, it greatly changes how you'll handle the main part of the map. Even the AV fight at the end is a bit interesting since the "wall" behind you turns out to open up into a door and the cover isn't where you thought it was. MAP07: Claustrophobia 100% kills, 5/6 secrets Map is aptly named as you'll be squeezed into some tiny spots on this one, often with enemies teleporting behind you. I really like the way things move around here, making the level feel like it's a bunch of moving parts instead of largely static entity. The dark sludge maze is fun too. The exit is not obvious. Other people seem to dislike this one, but I liked it a lot.
  12. Magnusblitz

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Doom Zero

    MAP03: Marble Zone 100% kills, 3/5 secrets I thought this one was a step down difficulty-wise from MAP02, as there's two big area chunks with plenty of cover and you shouldn't be getting hit from multiple sides if you're smart. Only dangerous part was walking into the second area too quickly and getting pincered by chaingunners I hadn't seen, which are really dangerous with the souped-up firing speed. (I can also see the caco swarm being dangerous, especially if you're playing on UV-fast like @Book Lord.) There's a lot of switch flipping here, but the level is small enough and guides you along the path so it's hard to really 'get lost'. I agree the new cacodemon sound seems just unnecessary, but the increased speed on the SSG bugged me a lot more because the animation looks like it's missing a few frames with the awkward pause between firing and reloading.
  13. Magnusblitz

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Doom Zero

    MAP02: Toxic Tower 100% kills, 2/4 secrets Decided to do pistol starts, and this one is actually quite dangerous at the start. Died 3 times - once to a barrel (something far too rare in most mapsets), once to just getting overwhelmed and once when I decided to jump in for the berserk pack, which was a bad mistake because I got ripped apart from above by shotgunners while escaping the slime and central tower. Most of the map is one circular area with a path on the outside and a central bunker in the sludge, but it gets a lot of mileage of it with plenty of monster closets that open as you go along. Another nice and punchy level.
  14. Magnusblitz

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Doom Zero

    Did someone say puzzles? MAP01: High-Rise Roof 100% kills, 3/3 secrets Nice little KDITD-style intro map here, definitely echos a lot of the IWAD design (and the music remix helps a lot). Decent amount of action, though if you find any of the secrets you'll likely be able to stroll through without much trouble. Good way to introduce the door lock signpost concept that I assume will show up again later. The key choice path seemed a little silly TBH for such a small level but could be that's another concept that will pop up again (though without knowing what the choices are, I can't quite see the point).
  15. Onward to Rowdy Rudy 2! MAP01: Storming the Bayside Base 100% kills, 2/2 secrets Going back to the regular Doom textures is nice, as the ones in the first WAD were generally pretty ugly to my eye. Texture cohesion in general is a lot stronger here as well - it's a very nice 'jungle entrance to hidden base' approach, which works well. The enemies also feel like less of a hodgepodge and more cohesive as well. Theme was something that I think the first WAD lacked, and so I think this one is a lot stronger for it. The map itself is a good intro map, giving the player a chance to get their bearings with the new enemies and weapons, but also having enough action to satisfy. Having the necessary blue key in a secret is a bit weird, but I did enjoy going back to look for it (and it helps that Doomkid likes to repopulate old areas with monsters). MAP02: Initial Hurdles 100% kills, 1/1 secret This one is pretty small/simplistic and could've made for a MAP01 as well. It's a little bit overkill with the keys, managing to use all three in a small map, especially one that's pretty linear, but like MAP01 I think it does a good job of introducing the player to some of the new enemies. MAP03: Further Infiltration 100% kills, 3/6 secrets Unlike last map, which kept the same 90's vibe as Doomkid, this map definitely was made by a different author and feels much more modern. A lot more complex in design, and lots of nice detailing with the texture usage and lighting. Secrets are felt more difficult to find and took some searching, and even then I missed half of them. Really good map with the way everything flows together, this is the sort of design I wish I were better at. The mini-mastermind felt a bit out of place (in addition to looking bad because of sizing down the sprite). MAP04: The Hydrocore 100% kills, 3/3 secrets Another map from an obviously different author, this one features an interesting looping (and disorienting) design and LOTS of darkness. The creepy music sets the tone, this one had me creeping very carefully to avoid getting blasted from a dark corner. Another really good map. I agree with @MtPain27 that it feels decidedly un-Rudy-like, but I appreciate variety in level sets. MAP05: In the Thick of It 100% kills, 2/2 secrets Back to Doomkid, and that means lots of larger areas, enemies teleporting behind you and some rooms stuffed with enemies to rip through at the end. I agree that the somewhat barebones nature of it makes it feel like it could fit in the first WAD.