Status Updates posted by NuMetalManiak
here we got a small collection of five birthday maps by Arlene for various friends and such. they all use OTEX like a number of cool projects, but the levels are all small in size so they are over rather quickly. most of them have at least one hub, the first one is sort-of a slaughtermap but the others go for a more hubspoke approach. none are particularly tough and some have a few cool GZDoom effects.Spoiler
my birthday is literally 31 days from now.
the year of the megawad ain't over yet, with out 24th (25th if you count both wads in the 64kb project) megawad being a one-man megawad by Cheesewheel. not much in the way of story for textfile, and frankly, not much in overall changes, just a 32-map megawad made by one author. levels are medium-sized and flow excellently, with no major progression hiccups. secrets aren't too difficult to find and difficulty scales accordingly. while typical and somewhat average, it's as charming as a typical megawad. highlights include the brutal mancubus trap in MAP19, the "climb" that is MAP30 which is the slaughtermap (oh and the Icon of Sin is on MAP29 this time), and a somewhat weird story which well I couldn't understand but I don't care. this was certainly a fun romp and worth a try.
when it comes to making your first map, it's honestly way better to make it underwhelming instead of overwhelming. this follows the overwhelming approach, and not in any good ways at all. 7 Deadly Sins appropriately titles its levels after the sins, and at least tries to make a level out of each concept. ultimately it doesn't make anyone happy, in fact, it seems to do everything it can to make you regret playing it.
Sloth and Greed are the shorter maps, but neither are particularly fun even though they try with the concepts (Sloth tries to be somewhat of a starvation map, Greed goes with the first room having you dodge cyberdemons and enter square rooms to telefrag them before the final room where you would get invulnerabilities to take down cyberdemons). Wrath and Envy are more medium-sized, but both have long, drawn-out areas, which are even more prevalent in the slaughtermaps Pride, Lust, as well as the sort-of hub map Gluttony. this combined with the "my first map design" does not abode well at all for this wad as a whole. the two first maps are slaughter maps, but it seems like all the meat is concentrated weirdly, like Pride has the majority of them being in the obscenely huge cargo room and most are imps, while Lust just has LOADS of zombiemen in the beginning while the other areas are milder, albeit still stupidly long and boring. Gluttony tries to spice things up but goes so slowly it's not worth it. finally there's a game-breaking bug with Envy as that one library room seems to function like a door which means that it can close all the way and be locked out.
overall the wad is very generic and definitely has the "my first wad" feel. although inspired by WOS I didn't see a lot in that inspiration, as the textures were not used as well and the layouts are bland and overdrawn. encounters should be made much more fun too. it helps to look at how other maps were designed, both in design and gameplay, when it comes to making your next map.
Review of Three is a Crowd:
so who could imagine, that in 2020, that not only would we have so many megawads, but also a one-man megawad made by possibly the most interesting modern mapper yet? @Scypek2 is known for participating in just about every community project, but whenever you play a map by this guy you're not gonna get conventional Doom. instead you get, well, the weird, but still playable level. the big bonus here would be that the entire set is vanilla-compatible and follows an interesting story. here, you are dealing with not one, but three marines, each setting off on their own adventure, with death exits and such to differentiate the different characters. the levels all try to combine neat concepts throughout and are assured to be fully playable and the gimmicks understandable. MAP24 is my least favorite though, because the switch puzzle for the blue door is bad, but this was still a fun megawad.
Review of Doom II: 25 Years on Earth (One Year Late Edition) by @Phobus:
one year late so you're telling me this could've been a 2019 megawad, in any case, it's our 22nd megawad of 2020 (23 if you count both 64kb wads). there's not much to really say, other than this does indeed use every line and sector action at least once. so it's got some creativity right there, some levels have one-time only switches which are only troublesome for secret finders and will not render levels unsolvable, and there's such things as a five-minute door, thirty second door traps. surprisingly map size and monster count are mostly small, but even the smallest maps have their hard parts. some maps work better than others as usual, like I really don't like MAP15 and its lifts at all but many other maps around it were great. gimmick maps were fun to get the hang of.
Review of The 64 kb challenge:
and say hello to megawads #16 and #17 and community project #13 of 2020. are we gonna get to 20 megawads for 2020 or 20 community projects for 2020? so here we have not one, but two megawads, where each level is done so that the file size does not exceed 64 kb. which equates to small levels. hey, this is good, since I can get through it quickly. of course, <64kb maps tend to be very unmemorable overall, those that try to make things interesting end up making their maps more annoying in retrospect. the more memorable outings are in the limit-removing set, and that set utilizes "YAMFSCMWHO" or "Yet Another Mancubus Fireball Spewing Custom Monster Wow How Original". Scypek's map has the first custom stuff, and was interesting. I am left wondering if Aurelius's map was intentionally glitchy. overall what else can you expect aside from mixed bag.
and now I hear that there's a 128kb challenge. personally I'm sitting here waiting for "64kb 1024x1024 32 grid 5 textures 5 flats 69 monsters in the style of joe-ilya Community Project"
Review of 1000 Lines 2 - Community Project 1.0:
okay so let's look back at 2020 so far in terms of how many megawads released (at least on idgames): Interception II, BTSX E2, NOVA 3, Akeldama, MAYhem 2020, OOPS All Techbase, Modest Mapping Challenge, Deep Into The Massacre, Texture Extravaganza, Hellforge Speedmapping Session 1, Short Maps for Short People 2, Death in Excess, SINERGY, SlaughterMAX, and Czechbox.
HOLY CRAP. that's 15 megawads so far, and 12 of those are community projects. now we have the thirteenth of those community megawads for 2020 bringing us to sixteen 2020 megawads. good lord. and with several more projects finally getting releases there will inevitably be more. anyways, I probably missed a few or something, but in any case, the title of "year of the megawad" has to go to this year by now. maybe a future year will usurp that? maybe not.
here we have the sequel to the first 1000 Lines Community Project, so the levels will still not be as huge as they appear, well for the most part anyways. we have 34 of them, and to make things sleeker, these mappers all used VOTEX. what the heck is this VOTEX well it's a vanilla-compatible texture pack version of OTEX which people should be familiar with by now (and if you're not get the hell out of the rock you're under). also included are plenty of music tracks, particularly several new ones by @AD_79 who composed the majority of it.
so as you'd expect, this being a community project of course quality varies, however consistency is nicely done so that no map (well apart from one) feels expurgated in a way. things scale nicely and there's distinctions between short maps, long maps, slaughter setups offered in spades, traditional death exits, yes. well I was only disappointed in MAP30 but most IOS fights in megawads are pretty bleh anyways.
as for that one map. I think after people play it it'll be the one map to be talked about for months. let me give you a hint. revenant rockets
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Hoping you enjoyed the music! I'm quite pleased with my work there, here's hoping it along with some of my other music gets placed in other projects!
Return to Hadron E3 does what E1 don't and what E2 doesn't. but it's much of the same except with the hell theme predominant more or less, so those used to cannonball's style well there's not much new. NOT that it's a bad thing if you're interested in gameplay, as this is what cannonball focuses on most. most areas are populated heavily, but each area also has fluidity so getting lost isn't an issue for once. there's at least two long levels at the end but are well-balanced and good enough to go through. my only complaint would be the baron usage as there's one too many in most maps. E3M5 in particular in a real nasty one.
Review of Unholy Journey Begins by elio.exe:
here we have an 11-level Doom II wad using IWAD music and generally speedmapped layouts. a few other changes like different-colored textures and such, and the layouts work alright for the most part. levels are usually done fairly quickly. some notable changes include a plasma trooper which replaces the SS as well as a spectre version of the cacodemon. also the lost soul is green and for some weird reason, the hell knight has a more pixelated sprite (I don't know why this is the case at all). one of the weird highlights is the last level, which in actuality when you trigger the spawn shooter it actually makes no sounds for spawning enemies (they spawn in teleport closets and go to the main area more or less, but you pretty much need to beat the level quickly anyways). so it's another generally short speedmapped set. not anywhere close to the best but more could be coming.
before I start this I should note that the link is not really the final as they are still bugfixing and well they'll get to it considering I gave some feedback on bugs. this review is on how the overall wad is though.
so I'd say this was a well-anticipated megawad considering I really did enjoy much of the previous Interception (even if many of the levels there seem mediocre now). we've got lots of custom music which is excellent, and the promises of action-packed stuff. okay so that's there and all. above all else though, the biggest issue is the overall pacing. there's no short maps in the set aside from MAP31 (which is a gimmick map and doesn't really count as much). every map is medium to large-sized and it's very likely a player will get fatigued or forget where they are going overall. we can appreciate the long map between other maps in a megawad but not multiple in a row in most cases. that's not even getting to why they are so long. I'd wager that speedrunning this in any category is nauseating, as the pacing of the maps tends to go to a standstill once you don't know where to go. for completionists, it's even nastier, as items are scattered everywhere and monsters are placed precariously, with plenty of secrets in most maps. and my god, stop with forced arena fights. many of the Boom triggers seem screwed up it makes me wonder why they didn't stick with vanilla compatibility. while anticipated, it blew my expectations to the ground with just how the gameplay tries to do everything to make you regret playing it.
Hmm I'm enjoying it so far, but I'm kind of a wide-eyed newbie so I'm mostly just appreciative of the craftsmanship. (Well, been playing Doom since '93, but haven't played many Pwads since those days). Been pistol-starting each level and while I'm only on MAP07 so far, I've found it to be just challenging enough to keep me interested without overly frustrating me. MAP06 in particular had some cool water-current and teleporter effects. It probably doesn't hurt that I enjoy arena-like levels -- you're right that there's a lot of big set-piece fights, but the architecture is differentiated enough to keep them interesting. I have gotten stuck for five or ten minutes or so at a time without quite knowing where to go next, but I figure it out eventually. Not a completionist, but I can see where exploring every nook and cranny of 32 big maps could get frustrating. Anyway appreciate your thoughts, just wanted to give my own take, and express my thanks to all the amazing mappers out there keeping Doom alive and better than ever. I gather there's been a dozen or so megawads released this year so I anticipate being happily busy for quite some time. ;)
as the previous Glaive was heavily inspired by the Scythe techbase style with ample combat, this continues that tradition, this time tackling the hell theme. as you'd expect, Glaive 2 is obviously much tougher, with a few setpiece fights to bring out the carnage while sticking to the Scythe style. well, mostly. I identified some particular areas seeming similar to One Bloody Night's hell areas, so maybe it's just Eric Alm-inspired overall? regardless, it's another quickie if you got time to kill. no map names again.
Review of MAYhem 2020
another year another one of these stupid Doomworld Mega Projects where the quality is all over the place. oh wait this is MAYhem, so it at least tries to be refined in some way to be "different" I guess. but hey! looks like overdosing on custom monsters and other dumb stuff is thrown by the wayside for "looking back at the olden days of Doom mapping". think of it as a 10 Sectors tribute, but each map now has 20 Sectors for double the trouble or so they say. to further it, there's resources used from the alpha and beta, so it all feels more of oldie nostalgia.
nevertheless, the biggest advantage AND the biggest disadvantage that MAYhem 2020 has is basically every single hallmark of a modern community megawad. think about it, there's...
-more than 32 levels, so a bunch get relegated to the bonus levels. and weirdly the first few seem like they could fit right in the main set (the rest are gimmicks more or less)
-the obligatory MAP11 and MAP20 death exits
-the obligatory MAP21 berserk map
-a joe-ilya map somewhere in the bonus section
-the almost obligatory slaughtermap which may or may not be good
-the late game map (MAP29 in this case) that is more grandiose than it really is and is honestly more troublesome than it's worth
-and everything else in between that is high or low depending on your skill
oddly enough MAP30 isn't an Icon of Sin map for once, but MAP48 is one. so yes, there you have it another MAYhem, thankfully it was released on the same year as its iteration and not in the testing hell it would have ended up being. my favorite map was MAP14 by the way.
this is the kind of wad you will end up playing when you are doing either a huge fucking download elsewhere, or are rendering something important, but because speed fluctuates from between 1 hour to 10 minutes to 5 days, you have nothing better to do other than make some sort of attempt to just strangle your ISP in a fit of rage. but since you probably don't have a clue where your ISP is you decide to play a Doom wad instead. and even then, you can somehow finish beating this one all the way through BEFORE your thing is finished.
this wad isn't your average everyday episode replacement. it's something that is made to befit the 1994 era like a tee. i'm serious. you're seeing what I'm seeing, weird aliens that replace zombiemen and for some reason having arch-vile death animations, the Pluto dog from Disney as the shotgun guy, Reptile from MK as the imp, and the alien from Aliens as the baron. then the items are like random sprites more or less, with glasses as the light amplification visor and a pink dress as the radiation suit. sounds are wacky as had been with those ambitious '94 authors, and those who know monti's music selection would probably realize yes, that's weird too (neat that a SD3 song was in E1M7). to further drive the point on home, monti manages to make plenty of areas as annoying as possible, in a way to emulate the sheer annoyance of playing Maximum Doom-like shitty maps of the 1994 era. hard to believe he would even think of this kinda thing, but there you go. you've got rooms with multiples of weapons and keys, dumb encounters with lots of barons and cacodemons, and every map has 10 secrets and all are stupid hard to get. backtracking is incredibly prevalent and so is the frustration factor. perhaps the only thing it really lacks is the inescapable pits or other silly mistakes that '94 mappers made. there's also these philosophical sayings in these secrets, as well as stupid parody imagery of world leaders and Mr. Rogers among other things. what can I say, this is a mess. but it's also an appropriate mess that fits with the desired theme.
Review of E1M1 Multiverse:
ideas never seem to run out for many things that have been done before. reshaping Hangar in multiple ways is the name of this one. you can predict that the layouts still adhere to Hangar, and in some ways so do the monster selections, although they all try different things overall.
MAP01: Alpha textures
MAP02: attempted combo of Hangar and Entryway
MAP03: Doom Jr-like version of Hangar
MAP04: well there's a dock.
MAP05: Hell theme
MAP06: Wolfenstein 3D
MAP07: Resident Evil-based with custom assets
MAP08: Minecraft with a lot of areas that seem different
MAP09: SI6IL based
MAP10: Plutonia MAP01
MAP11: city theme
MAP12: another Hell theme with a small smathering of Go 2 It vibes
addition to this there's also a new weapon, a pulse rifle with bouncy plasma projectiles as well as the Hell warrior enemy, both thankfully used sparingly. most maps are quick to beat like the original Hangar so there's always a chance to revisit this.
Review of OOPS: All TechBase:
OOPS: All TechBase, yet another community project that uses techbases, except with the hay fever of dropping bananas on people's heads in the middle of a rainstorm while snakes on an island wear suits and ties. wait no that's not what it's about. it's a community project with the theme of techbase. kinda inevitable when you think about it. I was annoyed at the lack of a wad description though.
at least it plays exactly how I expected it to. it has techbases, metal stuff, and well that's all I can say. other than that, fairly typical community project. not a lot of names I recognize it seems. since it's a community project it has ups and downs overall and I don't wanna bother explaining that in detail. short levels, long levels, the occasional fight that feels like slaughter, but even the one with the biggest horde isn't really that hard to deal with. MAP22 is probably my favorite here.
Hey is Doomworld hacked or is Chrome just acting dumb? Every single download is now considered "unsafe" for some reason.
I think I figured out what happened. It was because I was downloading End Game and Chrome for some reason thought it was dangerous. Then for some reason it thought every other download was dangerous. I had to clear my history to stop it from doing that. What I find strange is that this isn't the first time this has happened and I am wondering why this file and this file alone seems to cause this issue.Disregard all this the issue cropped up again. This may be a Chrome-related issue with downloading .zip files it seems.
Review of The Modest Mapping Challenge
so yet another megawad, yet another community project, and I must be getting old, because I recognize less and less names in the community nowadays who participate in these projects. the overall gist is that this is a project which is in Doom 2 format, where each mapper who participates must use a maximum of 40 sectors. so it's like 10 sectors except times four. then, you are limited to only using four monster types, which is four times 1 Monster. I guess Four Is Death. but the last limitation will likely raise some eyebrows, as it basically says that there is no SSG allowed. a weapon that can balance itself well against Doom II's bestiary, and it is cancelled completely for this project.
nevertheless, modesty is the name of the game, and that's what these map layouts offer...modesty. don't expect supremely fancy Ribbiks architecture, expect more modest, 90s-style layouts that really do remind you of 10 Sectors the megawad. most maps are short, but several outliers exist, like Blue_Juice's two maps, which I actually don't like. this is an episode-driven megawad, with not only death exits but also episode selection from the main menu. there's going to be slaughtermaps, special mention goes to both secret maps which are stupid and silly levels where shotgun guy hordes basically kill themselves trying to kill you. I can surmise it's likely that players will miss that SSG for the entire megawad.
a combination of rules set out to make a megawad that multiples and combines aspects of classic limitation megawads, and the result turned out exactly as its namesake, modest. some maps will be weak, there's no getting around that. at the most this set as a whole is just modest.
Do not install KB4560960, guys
combat, storyline, and atmosphere. all key ingredients to making some of the best wads, as well as those that would fall under the radar. I would say Infernovasion does fall under the radar, it's only one episode replacement, the likes of which we've seen multiple times throughout the years. but it both plays quite well and offers plenty of deceny in regards to atmosphere and combat. it's never too hard and it usually stays pretty creepy. most of the levels will get done in about five or so minutes too, so it's a little delightful experience. the cyberspace secret level is decent, the only level I didn't like much was E1M6 and its nukage but the overall feel was decent and it's worth at least one go.
The Microsoft Community is fucking worthless. I have two questions trying to address the same USB failure issue (which I believe may be deliberate, as it only occurs upon accessing a site at any random time) and they close both threads without an answer after a few months of no response.
"A classic-style Doom II megawad with 32 levels. Version 3 music fix released."
well isn't that right. the gameplay of Deep into the Massacre definitely holds the classic style for the most part, although there's some discrepancies to be had. there aren't any music tracks in this wad, but the wad's music is shuffled more or less. not that I care about that though. the wad was tested with GZDoom, and I played on that too. it says it won't run with Vanilla Doom, but I think it can run at least on a limit-removing port, if not, Boom-compatible, as there's nothing that really screams ZDoom use anywhere here.
anyways, design-wise, this is nothing special at all. gameplay is all over the place depending on the map. some maps play pretty fine, others try for some gimmicks but come up short. a number of them are a bit boring due to bad baron of hell placement. secrets make things way too easy. some areas are symmetrical and often employ the revenant or chaingunner trap. and then there's MAP26 which unfortunately must be broken because it looks like there's no sector tagged for some of the teleporters required to go through.
when it's there though, the combat is alright at the best and mediocre at the absolute worst. it's not that bad but it definitely has room for improvement.
Looks like Status Updates and Recent Activity are now showing the recent ones again, cool.
Review of Texture Extravaganza
amongst the many projects stuck in Doomworld development hell and often showing up on the first page of WADs and Mods with updates (or just people bumping threads and shit) we have Texture Extravaganza. to the uninitiated, one probably thinks it's just a resource wad, made with the efforts of creating new textures, but in reality it's a 27-level megawad, with 26 regular levels and one secret level, with the main gimmick being to use only a select set of textures for each map. it's a community project, started by bzzrak, continued by NaZa, and only now in 2020 was it compiled for idgames release.
the overall gist is this, each starting room is a black room where you see all the textures and flats used to create each map, and with that in mind the teleporter will take you to the map itself. the overall progression of the levels go from generally easy ones with limited resources, to more modern stuff, to the slaughter stuff at the end, which is quite typical of modern megawads. there were mappers I was glad to see, and mappers that I honestly didn't want to see, making maps for this thing. walter conflagration made some interesting maps, some more annoying than they ought to be, and riderr3 made three maps, surprisingly only MAP15 made me feel groggy. the shitty progression in it is bad, but it's actually way worse in Stormcatcher's MAP24, which honestly ought to have been a standalone (when are we gonna get a compiled Cursed Realms). I was okay with pretty much everything else, dobu's map was actually good, even if it's one of the easiest levels, and Azurish's level is good too. most maps tend to go for the gimmicks, which are love or hate, but I'm glad this got a release.
Hmm, status updates seem to be REALLY broken now. I submitted this Sunday, but not only does it show up only on my profile and not on the recent status updates, but now it says that the thing never submitted at all. So I'll just pile on a different review for now.
Jimmy's been known for quality no matter what kinds of maps or midis he makes. while these seem like throwaway random maps without much purpose, each map individually is fun. this is pretty much all that matters. but in each map you'll find textures from various sources, most of which are his own. quite a few maps take inspiration from many classics. but the bottom line is we're dealing with mostly easy levels with great layouts and a few gimmicks and what not and the experience never really degrades at all. compared to other speedmappers Jimmy basically does things better.
review of Verdant Citadel:
what can I say, I'm obviously impressed with the scale and the grandeur. Verdant Citadel isn't really super tough, but is the kind of map that feels great to get lost in, much like Remnant was. this is for GZDoom as it features both slopes and 3D floors, and its the latter that really sells this citadel off. the enemy encounters try their best at keeping challenging, with the main highlights being the shoreline fight which includes cyberdemon as well as the final elevator battle. the sheer balance between verticality and horizonticality (if you can call that a word) is the thing that really makes this unique, and as the ZDoom maps evolve, I guarantee we'll be seeing stuff like that sooner than expected.
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One more for tonight, I try to keep these status update reviews limited to one day usually. For Could You Would You In A Box:
Jaws in Space is mostly known for his critique of several wads both classic and modern, but playing this one, his own mapping sure does leave a lot to be desired. granted, the simplicity of things actually isn't a bad thing for the most part, you get to find what you need, fight off monsters in non-linear layouts that seem to work well, and then you exit and the experience in each map should not take more than five minutes. but even after all these maps I still feel as if there could have been more interesting things in the 2048x2048 spectrum. well, there's some levels that stick out: MAP13 Disorder in the Courtyard is quite fun, MAP25 Saucer has several traps in switch areas, with monsters to compliment your escapes, while MAP32 Watch Your Step utilizes tricky platforming. for the rest though, it feels arcade-y which is okay. the overall quality is just average overall, nothing super exciting. MAP12 I recognized from 2048 Unleashed as well.
"a bunch of shitty, unbalanced speed maps made for nanowadmo" well you're definitely right about the shitty part. no balance to speak of, wresting the BFG from the first map proves the mission statement for the rest. this is unbalanced slaughter with some levels trying to pay homage to whichever mapslot they are on. MAP30 has a monster spawner gauntlet before a big 9000+ slaughterfest at the end. you'll be loaded for bear for megaspheres and cell ammo but you'll die a lot too. but since these are speedmaps, treat them as such, not amazing detail, not amazing gameplay.
Darkest Room review:
at this point I've played one too many wads made by one too many mappers and frankly I can easily tell what styles people end up going for all the time. Darkest Room is themed for black, gray, and green, evoking shades of Death-Destiny maps in both mood and gameplay. a medium-sized map that has exceptionally tough combat due to resources being conserved in a number of places, plus the green cyberdemon isn't too bad a custom monster. it's worth a go, although it's definitely not the best of the crop and sadly will likely be forgotten for other DD-style maps despite being a runner up in the last cacowards.
it seems like this was a long time coming, given how the one and only time I played Demon Eclipse had me left hanging for quite a bit. regardless, Hell-Forged is a beast of its own right despite being pegged as a remake of the second episode of Demon Eclipse, featuring several new things that definitely qualify this as a robust TC.
there's a few new enemies, some of which actually function like reskins (Draugr to revenant, Corpulent to mancubus, Arachknight to, well, arachnotron, even some of the boss monsters like Helldukes which are essentially cyberdemons). these new enemies are mixed well with regular beastiary, although you'll notice a complete lack of hitscanners at all times here. other new monsters are somewhat interesting, the devil is just an enhanced imp, while the new demon and spectre variants do use projectiles. infernals and sentinels were also quite impressive.
for weapons, we start out with the melee Templar sword, but you'll notice that each slot up to 5 has two weapons, the Vorpal blade being exceptionally amazing when fully charged and using alt-fire, capable of slicing down even barons with ease. for slot 2 the fire weapons, starting with the immolator which shoots fire jets that continuously harm, or fires the ground up. the other slot 2 weapon the basilisk has a crappy alt fire with a dual flamethrower, but its regular fire is a nice Duke3D-like devastator weapon. slot 3 gives us the Wheel of Pain, a very unique weapon that functions like a shotgun but gives a healing projectile to the player upon a successful hit, and the alt-fire is a chainsaw variant that apparently gives the weapon more ammo. the other weapon the Hellbolt functions like a rocket launcher and a bouncy grenade launcher. slot 4 has weapons that echo the nailgun and super nailgun from Quake, with the alt-fires of both being rather strong, the mauler in particular is essentially an SSG in alt-fire mode. finally the soul weapons in slot 5, the Soultaker functions like Quake's Thunderbolt weapon but is powered up, then the alt-fire releases a deadly blast consuming that energy, while the Reaper is essentially a nasty BFG-type weapon spawning ghasts that continue the attack.
and then you got the power up spheres that compliment the journey accordingly. the Doom sphere essentially is a Tome of Power, while other spheres do things like give infinite ammo, completely replenish ammo, or speed up the player, and well there's more.
there's so much to take in, but the levels are gonna be the big thing here. this is an episode of 9 levels, each level being quite big in size and getting bigger as you progress, making this a worthwhile adventure. level layouts can have you taking multiple paths, but there's usually a hub you start out in and then you branch off to find the keys or whatever. lots of secrets, unfortunately even I cannot find them all, like in H1M4 the Factory like area with the Dead Simple arena, there's one secret I never could find. notably there's all these mushroom dolls which I think are in every map and are secrets in their own right, I think I got all but one of them. then the green key is usually a secret key in each map, and finding several switches behind green doors tends to allow you to access the better weapons sooner. however, many of the maps are huge, but not too difficult to actually navigate. H1M8 is a hub with five spokes to go to, but apparently you only need to reach three different areas, which is slightly convenient.
prepare for an episode that's guaranteed to have you in for a long hall with this thing. it's a long ride for a TC.