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TheOrganGrinder

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About TheOrganGrinder

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  1. TheOrganGrinder

    I'm Also Looking to Play and Record Your Maps

    No requests here, but I do want to say thank you, it'll cool that you're doing this and your videos and feedback on all sorts of WADs have been engaging.
  2. TheOrganGrinder

    The DWmegawad Club plays: A.L.T.

    MAP22: Acidjazz This is a pretty peculiar map, combining a well-developed chemical plant theme with A.L.T.'s signature nodules of embedded weirdness and coupling the whole thing to a style of progression that I can't really claim to have done more than muddled my way through. By the end of it all I was missing the blue key, one secret, and a handful of monsters, and with no apparent way back I had little choice but to put a bullet in the Icon's third eye and call it done. I don't think the map does a particularly good job of communicating goals or directions to the player; I felt there was a lot of blindly stumbling forward and making leaps of faith into toxic slime, hoping that there was a path of progression to be found somewhere in the muck, rather than clear problems to quite deliberately solve or known objectives to pursue. I didn't know what either the red or yellow keys were for or where I would be using them when I picked them up, for example; I don't know if that's typical of the experience of playing through this map, maybe even intentional, or not, but it feels like a missed opportunity to give the player direction and purpose. That said, I'm not going to complain too much, as it contrasts quite nicely with the rather more constrained and signposted progression of the previous map. If this rest of the WAD is like this, though, I think my patience for aimlessness is going to wear thin pretty quickly.
  3. TheOrganGrinder

    Outbreak of Evil

    So I'm three levels into this and I'm enjoying what you've served up so far. :) Some thoughts on specific levels: E1M1 feels like the weakest offering of the three maps I've played so far, because its layout is so clearly derived from the original E1M1 (the armour tower near the start, the zig-zag walkway over green slime, the chamber beneath the exit room with the fences and barrels) and it feels like it's been dressed up with an excess of sector detailing and drenched in darkness in an unsuccessful attempt to disguise its origins. The darkness makes the adjacent sector-based lighting effects very conspicuous in a way that calls attention to the fact that time and effort has been spent on them that many players might feel could have been better invested in coming up with a more original map layout. I also do not like the presence of lost souls and a demon in mandatory-to-progression sections of a map where the only weapon other than the player's starting pistol is tucked away in a secret; they have enough health that they're very tedious to slowly chip one's way through with the pistol, and their presence makes me feel that the shotgun should be placed somewhere more readily accessible. E1M2 is rather better; it's clearly not derived from the original E1M2 and boldly does its own thing instead. The overall layout of the map is interesting, almost a loop but not quite because the broken door remains broken; if you wish to consider revising this map, I would suggest incorporating some way for the player to "un-break" that door or otherwise connect the exit area to the earlier portions of the map nearby. I'd also suggest removing tag 4 from sector 229 because it's not necessary to the functioning of the lift and just makes a distracting additional "clunk" sound - I'm going to guess this tag crept into the sector when it was drawn adjacent to the previously-tagged sector 220? I think the sector lighting effects you're fond of work better in this map because they blend in better as part of the overall environment, they don't feel conspicuous or added-on. E1M3 is a solid, compact level with a lot of design choices that I find odd. The triple layer of remotely operated doors that secure the south-western node of the map are an interesting touch, but the fact that all three switches needed to operate those doors are in separate alcoves off the same north-eastern room makes peeling back those layers of security feel like busywork; instead of three switches each guarded by two lost souls, consider how the balance of time taken vs. threat overcome shifts if you've got a single switch with all six of those lost souls guarding it. Visually the fact that the nukage tank containing the blue key has the same floor height as the adjacent sector, separated only a barrier that drops down to the shared level of the two, looks a little peculiar; I can understand why it's set up this way (the lift-barrier will always move down to the lowest adjacent floor height) but when it happens a part of me expects the churning slime, no longer contained, to spill across the top of the barrier and into the adjacent control room. You've also got a visual glitch happening in non-GZDoom ports with the transparent midtexture detail in the final room: Which can be resolved by having different sector attributes (floor or ceiling heights, light level) on different sides of the linedef(s) involved; I would suggest reducing the light level of sector 137 by one step as the most expedient solution. (Pardon the IDDQD/IDKFA, I just wanted to get quickly to this part of the level to screenshot the glitch.) I would also suggest tagging the secret exit or a sector close to it as secret since it's on the opposite side of the map to the single secret-tagged sector that currently exists, and just because you find that secret area, doesn't mean you'll discover and hit the switch within that opens the way to the secret exit. Overall I'm enjoying this so far but I feel the arrangement of the levels within the WAD is a little uneven; weapon-starved E1M1 feels like a trickier map than the immediate chaingun bonanza of E1M2, which in turn had its share of vicious little traps that were more dangerous than anything E1M3 had to offer, and the conspicuous lighting effects and lavishly detailed outdoor areas of E1M1 likewise feel like more recent and carefully developed efforts than the somewhat more simply realised interiors of E1M2 and E1M3.
  4. TheOrganGrinder

    Doom board game anyone?

    I'll admit that I have no personal experience of this; I'm just going by how @dm5k described it above. Your description of the Bioshock Infinite board game makes it sound pretty cool; I'm sure there are some potential player who'll be disappointed that you're not getting to play as the heroes of the video game, but I actually like the fact that they've taken the setting and then gone with gameplay that has you doing something quite different.
  5. TheOrganGrinder

    Doom board game anyone?

    There's a part of me that wonders if it would be possible to turn that dynamic on its head. Instead of one player controlling all the demons, and all the other players teaming up as marines to achieve a shared objective, consider a game where one player controls the nigh-unstoppable Doom Slayer and the other players share control of the demon horde. I think you'd need to scale the strength of the Doom Slayer according to the number of demon players - not necessarily "the Doom Slayer is twice as strong versus two demon players as he is versus one demon player," but some other way of changing the dynamic so that the game plays quite different as you add more demon players and a larger or faster-growing demon horde.
  6. TheOrganGrinder

    The DWmegawad Club plays: A.L.T.

    MAP21: Fracture So apparently we're in some kind of virtual reality now? Or was that meant to describe MAP20, with this level representing a return to physical reality? I don't know if that's simply a case of the writing being unclear, or if the uncertainty is quite deliberate, one more way vector for A.L.T. to mess with the player's head. If you can't tell which reality you're in, virtual or physical, is that a commentary on the blurring of the lines between the two? Has virtual reality become so compelling that it can become reality for those who choose to fully engage with it? And in doing so has it exposed the limitations and the hollowness of physical reality? If I don't know that I'm dreaming unless you tell me so, what gives you the right to tell me to wake up? Philosophical juvenilia aside, this is another techbase map, but it's one that flows in a more interesting fashion, repetitive cement corridors contributing to a building sense of unreality and oppressiveness, that this space isn't built in any way for your convenience, that it's down to you to understand it and to take it on its own terms. Ultimately it's quite brief, especially compared to the epic urban adventures that dominated the earlier parts of the WAD, culminating in a pitched arena battle followed by a little coda in a fleshy Hell-space where the mancubus squad awaits to teach you a lesson about letting your guard down when you think it's all over. Fortunately there's a megasphere provided too; so long as the lesson isn't a fatal one, it won't prove too harsh, and you can travel further into this final episode of A.L.T. in peak condition for the trials to come.
  7. TheOrganGrinder

    Bloody Rust 3 (WIP)

    Bloody Rust 2's plasma-spitting dark-grey demons were definitely something repeatedly caught me off my guard when I was playing through the WAD over the past week or so; I think it's their ability to rapidly get into a surprising position plus the projectile speed that makes them so good at quickly nipping off a vicious little chunk of the player's health.
  8. TheOrganGrinder

    Bloody Rust 3 (WIP)

    Possibly a silly question: is it intentional (and unavoidable) that the arachnotron uses the same projectile as the modified demon, altering the arachnotron's combat performance somewhat, or is this an indication that I'm doing something unintended when loading the resources WAD?
  9. TheOrganGrinder

    The DWmegawad Club plays: A.L.T.

    MAP20: 20.44 Well that's a cryptic title for a map that is similarly cryptic in its progression; I'll echo @Capellan's sense that "Wait, was I supposed to do that?" was a question I repeatedly found myself asking, with necessary steps for progression arranged in such a way that they might at first be taken for side areas, optional content, or even the route to a secret cache, though in only one such case (the secret BFG tucked away beside the return-to-sender teleport behind the red bars) was I right about that last impression. It's nice to have left the staidness and predictability of the last several maps behind, escaping to a level that takes largely beneath the open sky and offers no shortage of opportunities to stop and smell the roses bloodfalls; it's an environment that combines rock, masonry, techbase nuggets embedded in the landscape like shrapnel in a wound, and copious amounts of freely-flowing gore in a setting that isn't particular coherent but nevertheless is rather compelling. That said, the fragmented path of progression, with teleporters wrenching you to and fro, contributes to a sense of unease that has less to do with present or imminent danger and more to do with a worry that any such teleporter, marked or not, might be a one-way trip, closing avenues of exploration to you, denying you piled resources that you've carefully hoarded for later. It's not a bad map to round out the episode, but it's definitely one that feels like it's closing out the story of the three preceding brickbase maps, rather than telling a complete tale of its own.
  10. TheOrganGrinder

    The DWmegawad Club plays: A.L.T.

    MAP19: The Point of Return Got to the end of this one with a bunch of monsters still not killed and only half the secrets found. Realised I didn't feel like poking around for whatever undiscovered beasties or bennies might yet be tucked away. Realised as soon as I warped to the next level that I'd left a megasphere behind that I'd decided to "save for later" in a fit of sheer contrariness when it looked like the level designer wanted me to be compelled to grab it after a long string of health and armour bonuses, and I decided to prove that, no, you didn't have to collect the megasphere in order to hit the switch behind it. Realised I didn't much feel like loading an earlier save and going back for that either. Honestly this is a grindy and claustrophobic map full of cheap-feeling traps and tight spaces where you can't get out of the way of fireballs no matter how lazily they might travel. I know @Crusader No Regret predicted an exodus around MAP11 but so far the stretch from MAP17 through MAP19 have marked the low point of the WAD for me; there's nothing that's weird or unexpected, no intrusions of an alternate reality upon your own, no sense that the rules have been twisted and you can survive or even thrive if only you can figure out how those rules have been rewritten, just all-too-conventional brickbase maps bleed excitement from me as much as they do pixelated blood-spots from the hapless marine.
  11. TheOrganGrinder

    The Official 'Trying to Find a Specific WAD' Thread

    Bearing in mind it's likely been in the region of twenty years since I last played the WAD I'm looking for... yes! I very much believe that's it, thank you!
  12. TheOrganGrinder

    What are you playing now?

    I've spent the past couple of days playing through Bloody Rust and Bloody Rust 2 in anticipation of building and contributing a level to the third episode in the series. Good stuff! I particularly like the use of the Cyberdemon replacement in BR2; it's not so tough, but it's smaller and more agile and so can stalk you through the gloomy, claustrophobic interiors of the various maps in a way that's very reminiscent of the Terminator, rather than the original walking-tank Cybie.
  13. TheOrganGrinder

    The DWmegawad Club plays: A.L.T.

    MAP18: Save Your Life This one feels less conventional than the preceding map, but it's still very much by the same designer and cut from the same cloth. Maybe some of its spaces are a bit more experimental and committed to quirks of gameplay over sense-of-place, for example the rising and falling platforms that are actually liquid geysers like something out of a platform game. I found the central area of the map to be awkward to navigate and tricky to get my head around in a three-dimensional sort of way, and overall I don't think the progression here was as strong as in the preceding map. Combat had a little more bite to it, but not always in ways that felt satisfying rather than cheap.
  14. TheOrganGrinder

    Bloody Rust 3 (WIP)

    So I figured if I'm to put together a map for this I should probably play through the existing episodes just to get a feel for the project, and though I'm still not done yet, it's been interesting to see the evolution of the theme and setting from Bloody Rust to Bloody Rust 2. I hope that whatever I can put together measures up to the standards of the project! (Also: Bloody Rust 2 MAP04, the first time you're spotted and squeeze the trigger and there's that horrifying shriek sounding from somewhere in the bowels of the map? Nearly made me jump out of my skin in a wonderful sort of way.)
  15. TheOrganGrinder

    The DWmegawad Club plays: A.L.T.

    MAP17: Reaction of Pain This is another map that wouldn't look out of place in any number of other, more conventional WADs, though it differs significantly from the preceding level in scale. Gone is the wide-open hub with its grand arches, the looming towers overlooking a vast and magma-choked rent in the earth; this is a much more compact affair that's cosy in general, intimate at its best, claustrophobic at its worst. The steady pacing of progress and gameplay is about as relaxing as shooting demons can be; press switch, enter new area, kill demons, anticipate telegraphed trap. I feel this is a level that would benefit from being placed in a different context; at this point in the WAD, the gameplay is too staightforward and the challenge just isn't there compared to the fiendishness of earlier maps, nor is the weirdness to which I've grown accustomed and for which I now find myself longing.
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