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Summer Deep

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  1. Summer Deep

    Beta 64 - A 31 level megawad for Doom64 EX!

    I've returned to this wad for a few days, and have been playing maps 16-24. Continues the good impression left earlier, with solid gameplay, impressive and atmospheric visuals, and well judged progression. Map 24 looked and played very much like a final level, but it seems there's more to come, and I'm certainly not complaining about that.... There was one potentially major issue with map 24 though. First time I played it through, it proceeded smoothly from the first 'mayhem in the arena' phase to the finale, when the Mother Demon appears. Second time I tried, the Mother Demon phase was very reluctant to generate. In the video below, I've saved near the end of the 'mayhem', with only a Baron and three HKs apparently left, but when they're gone, the game stalls. It turned out that it's due to a Cacodemon, who gets stuck either inside or on top of the central structure which houses the MD. I played the sequence from that save about 20 times, and only got the Caco to appear twice. Sorry for the messy presentation by the way, I'm not very good at using OBS Screen Recorder, and the only way I can get it to record this wad is to capture the whole screen with the game running in a window. Played the map through for a third time, and all was fine again, so I can't be sure about how big an issue this is or how often it's likely to occur.
  2. Summer Deep

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Deathless

    I won't be participating for the whole of this wad, as I feel I need a bit of a break from the DWmegawad club. I hope to join in for one or both of the last two episodes though. That having been said, I did take a look at E2, and ended up playing it right through on UV continuous. It took 1 hour 47 mins, and I didn't actually die once. I'm not anywhere near to being a top level Doomer, so this suggests to me that the wad may be very much on the easy side, unless of course there's a dramatic step up in difficulty later on. It also suggests that anyone wanting a serious challenge should be thinking about pistol starting (and I did notice that ammo, health and armour are all provided in generous amounts). Don't get me wrong - the maps were pleasing to play and looked good, and I've no complaints except for not being very happy about the fact that a certain pickup in map 6 was mandatory for progression. Great end of level screen as well, by the way! EDIT: LOL, I've just seen Jimmy's comment in the other Deathless thread regarding pistol starts v continuous play in this wad....:)
  3. Summer Deep

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Memento Mori 2

    MAP30: This was a bit flawed, essentially three disconnected scenarios artificially stitched together and presented as a single level. But anyway, it was nice to have some tasks to perform before being pitched into the IoS fight. The teleport ambush near the start was good stuff, the galleries of cannon fodder in the passageway a bit naff, and the Cyberdemon was easy to dispatch. I liked the fact that the IoS fight was straightforward and that the mapper didn't succumb to any temptation to show how clever and original he was by baffling and alienating the player right at the end (Hello Icarus, D2TWID, Alien Vendetta and others...). Interesting use of keys - what was going on with the invuln sphere, did it double up as the blue key as well, or something? 86% kills, 0/0 secrets I do like this megawad, which was why I proposed it in the first place. Maps 04, 08, 15, 19, 24, 28 and 29, were especially enjoyable, the only semi-duds being 11, 26 and 31. The rest were at least very decent, and I felt even 06 and 20 were a fair bit better than some reviewers here suggested.
  4. Summer Deep

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Memento Mori 2

    MAP29: A compact level divided into three combat areas, and with a smallish number of enemies, but not easy for all that. If you turn right at the start and take the teleporter to the area with the chaingunner towers, it's going to be exceedingly difficult if not impossible to progress beyond a certain point, certainly in UV. Before you go there, it definitely makes sense to find your way to the area with the caged rooms in the corners, and clear it out before the first Cyberdemon arrives. He's reasonably straightforward to deal with, but the second one would be a nightmare to take on in that cramped yellow key area, but for the fact that he teleports out of there (or at least he did when I played it) and gives the player the chance to avoid him or confront him in a more user-friendly environment. Archviles feature prominently too, but as often in this wad their destructive potential is limited, usually because they're behind bars. The one at the end could have caused a lot more trouble if he'd actively aided the Barons, but he stayed out of sight on the platform by the exit door, and was a sitting duck at the end (the AV on the platform outside the yellow door did surprise me though by jumping down into the nukage - you don't see that kind of thing very often). Disappointed to discover no secrets, though the room with the megasphere was very 'hidden', and I assume the switch that is pictured below was something to do with a secret - I pressed it but have no idea what it did. 95% kills, 0/4 secrets
  5. Summer Deep

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Memento Mori 2

    MAP 27: This was a pretty demanding level, as you'd expect by this stage of a megawad. It took me 78 minutes, in large part due to the progression issues mentioned by Capellan, and I don't really appreciate being told on the endscreen that my persistence 'sucks' in these circumstances, LOL. The battle in the red key room was the highlight for me, a difficult but fun series of engagements in an imaginative setting. Less enjoyable was the sewage area with the Revenants and PEs, where I had to fight a rearguard action cooped up in the passageway which leads to the lift out of there. The Cyberdemon encounter was the third time in this wad that he could be killed in a crusher, hmmmm.... Never worked out how to get that invuln sphere either, which was a bit annoying. 100% kills, 4/8 secrets MAP 28: An epic map. Yes, the chaingunners were a bit over the top, but so was virtually everything else. I had a love-hate relationship with the massive, brutalist-style grey architecture, impressive in its sheer overpowering scale, but reminiscent in some ways of some of the monstrosities that were constructed in 1970s Britain (and probably elsewhere as well). Found the complexities of the room layouts around the lift difficult to keep up with, and ended up saving every time I picked up a key, pressed a switch, or found a secret area, as it might have taken half an hour working out how to get back there otherwise. Funniest moment was when I had to run back into the teleporter in that vast courtyard outside the yellow door to escape from three or four Revenant homing rockets which wouldn't stop chasing me. 100% kills, 4/4 secrets, 70 minutes ('sucks')
  6. Summer Deep

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Memento Mori 2

    MAP 25: As a previous commenter remarked, this level tends to move the player around on rails, so to speak, but I was moving along quite happily on those rails through this very 'linear' map, when I reached that teleporter. Yes, THAT one. Hoped it'd work out alright, as I'd been playing in GLBoom+ complevel 2 throughout, but no such luck, so I restarted with the linedef-related setting as advised by Capellan, but the bloody thing still wouldn't work....Finally switched to a UV pistol start in ZDoom, where this issue is no longer a factor of course, but by that time I was completely hacked off and just wanted to get to the end asap. That Cyberdemon fight was an absolute pig owing to what it must be said was a clever piece of design. After several deaths I decided just to grab the yellow key then head for the exit, but then curiosity about that lever in the Cybie's lair prompted me to go back. I'm not a good enough player to pull off one of those 2 shot BFG numbers, but after another six or seven ignominious failures I somehow managed to nuke the big guy from point blank range, and discovered the secret of the lever....a chainsaw. Yep. Was expecting at least that soulsphere, and then the lift suddenly lowered and dumped me into the midst of around 15 imps. Thank you, Mr Möller. 99% kills, 4/8 secrets MAP26: Yes, this is an uninspiring effort. Half the map seemed to be made of breeze blocks and the other half to have been built with materials left over from Icarus. Even the presence of four Cyberdemons could barely get the pulse racing, and I was at least expecting a semi-slaughterish extravaganza of a finale when I saw that megasphere in an all too significant setting close to the exit. Really something like a second SM or a supporting cast of Revenants was needed here to give the map a decent send off, but perhaps it didn't deserve it. 2/7 secrets
  7. Summer Deep

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Memento Mori 2

    MAP23: This continues the recent sequence of longish, fairly tough levels. It's also quite complex, with two of each key colour required, and contains a well above-average secrets count. Three particularly brutal fights: the one in the blue key room is certainly manageable with plasma and circle-strafing, and can be neutralized entirely if the nearby invulnerability sphere is found. Then there's a massive ambush involving Barons and Revenants in the secret BFG room, but you need to discover the switches then negotiate a mind-boggling number of teleporter combinations just to get there: I came out of this encounter with 6% health. Finally comes the one involving the Pain Elementals, Cacos and god knows what else in that small room near the end - the only way I could survive this was to get out as quickly as possible, then take the lift on the left to the relatively safe area above: I'd take my hat off (if I had one) to anyone who could survive this assault on UV without leaving the first room (maybe two or three perfectly timed and directed BFG blasts would do the job, maybe not). It's quite possible to run straight through to the exit from here, but the Cyberdemon fight is one of those where the player can use the cover of a central pillar and engage with the foe at close quarters with the SSG, which is always guaranteed to get the pulse racing... 100% kills, 16/18 secrets. Some of the secrets here are rather trivial, and perhaps shouldn't be labelled as such. MAP24: A shorter, very straightforward and enjoyable map, in a similar vein to MAP08, which presents us with a steady stream of encounters in manageable chunks, a welcome contrast to the increasing incidence of somewhat overblown setpiece- type stuff we have seen in recent levels. It was great fun to blast oncoming Revenants with rockets in the corridors, or snipe them through windows, and to take potshots from afar at the Mancubus guarding the yellow key in his watchtower. I didn't even mind the Startan E1 style decor or the fact that the green armour was so far from the start. 99% kills, 0/5 secrets (need to retry this map sometime and find at least a couple of the secrets)
  8. Summer Deep

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Memento Mori 2

    MAP21: This is a very solid level, the action well paced and balanced throughout, and the highlights being the testing but enjoyable encounters after the player enters the courtyard with the rising floor. I died twice, once near the start while foolishly trying to chainsaw the Lost Souls who were guarding the green armour (thumbs up for at least providing that early on), then after falling into the slime pit surrounding the yellow key and finding three Pain Elementals in there. I'd agree with Capellan that the final section is lacklustre. There's a very contrived, telegraphed arrangement to set up infighting between the Baron and the Archvile, in which the Baron always seems to lose and never retaliates for some reason. And that Cacoswarm is a very crass example of a device that is not in itself inherently subtle. 96% kills, 3/6 secrets MAP22: Quite a lot to like about this one, an early example being the opportunity to get the Revenants attacking the Barons on the walkway beyond the red door. Then a really spectacular brouhaha can be generated if the player is quick to lower the wall separating the Arachnotrons from the Barons and HKs, then lets them set about each other. There's also a meaty slice of action to be enjoyed, albeit on a lesser scale, after the blue key is obtained. It was fun for about a minute watching the Cyberdemon being crushed, though it's a bit of a gimmick and depends a lot on whether the player has already visited the nukage area and activated the trap before the Cyber teleports there, otherwise the situation is a whole lot trickier, and more interesting perhaps. Not so sure also about the huge glut of pinkies who teleport to the tunnel area past the blue door - it's a bit of a grind dealing with them, and one hopes that excesses of this sort will not become a regular feature of the wad as it enters its later stages. It's also worth noting that the secret area with the BFG and 200 plasma cells is apparently only available once, so if you have 600 cells when you visit it, then you won't be able to return later in order to top up your ammo. 98% kills, 3/12 secrets
  9. Summer Deep

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Memento Mori 2

    MAP19: A fairly 'segmented', tightly structured type of map, with an okay opening section giving way to a pretty intense series of encounters in restricted spaces beyond the yellow door, then a finale where the player teleports into four set- piece type scenarios. I liked the visit to the tunnel environment, where one could be methodical and take one's time, whereas the lift escapade was altogether more frantic, though not as murderously tough as it seemed on a first playthrough: a bit disappointed that the lift couldn't be made to go back up afterwards, as I'd like to have raided those openings in the walls. The caged area wasn't too hard, as the AV could easily be sniped and couldn't revive the bigger monsters like the Baron and Revenants. The fights around the chapel weren't too bad either, another AV with limited potential for damage, but some pop-up chaingunners who could be lethal. 102% kills, 1/5 secrets MAP20: This map gets a bit of a slating in the Onemandoom review section, but that seems to be written from a pistol starter's angle, and to my mind it's not a bad experience in continuous play. It does appear a bit dated in one or two areas, even by 1996 standards, and perhaps buggy - there seemed to be an invisible, phantom chaingunner firing at me in the teleporter room, and a Cyberdemon could be heard at the end of the level, but did anyone ever get to meet him? That strange piano music felt rather out of place as well. I thought the fights were pretty decent, especially in the blue key area and the computer room, and the opening area is quite straightforward if you make a quick exit from it, then use the monster blocking lines to manage the situation from a safe distance. The Cyberdemon encounter was fairly routine, with plenty of cover and space to move in, and a good bit easier than the chaingunner teleporting ambush which really was quite sustained and vicious. It was odd that so many radsuits were provided, yet there didn't seem to be anything worth finding in the nukage, unless I missed something - you didn't even need one of them to get the BFG. After finishing the map, I engaged one or two cheat modes, including idclip, in a bid to solve the mystery of the second Cyberdemon. This was what I found, I'm still none the wiser: 90% kills, 2/4 secrets
  10. Summer Deep

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Memento Mori 2

    MAP18: The episode with the lift near the start seemed to encapsulate the sometimes hit and miss nature of this level. Unpredictable, getting stuck at times, sometimes serving up a Baron for the player to deal with, sometimes a Revenant, or maybe both. Then again there could be infighting at the bottom of the lift, or the player could fall down it and be annihilated by the Mancubus or Arachnotron; in addition some strange teleporting shenanigans appeared to be going on down there as well.... The combat in general was a mixed bag, most of the best stuff coming in the earlier part of the level, including that around the lift and in the cramped areas near the red key room. Some bits were bizarre though - being forced to pick up the Berserk pack in the control room for instance: I didn't need any more health, so the extra 100% was of no use, and I'm not interested in punching Cacodemons and Pain Elementals, though some people may well get off on that sort of thing. There were also a couple of places where one could shoot off imps' kneecaps through seized up, partially opened doors, which was fun I suppose.... The map was visually quite attractive with good variety, from the imposing nukage areas, to the control centre with its pulsating lights, and the outdoor area with the Mancubuses, which provided a striking contrast. The under-populated caves were a bit disappointing though, and seemed to serve no real purpose (even the Arachnotron in here was frozen, and quite ineffective). [rant] Plenty of health around, but no armour: from other comments in this thread, it seems that's to be expected of this particular mapper, but it's something that's too common for my liking in this wad as a whole. Many people probably don't find it very enjoyable to play this way, and a green armour placed near the start of the map (not in a secret) really shouldn't be too much to ask. [/rant] 100% kills, 1/6 secrets
  11. Summer Deep

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Memento Mori 2

    ^ Good Heavens, thanks for that! So it seems you have to 'activate' it twice - once to turn it from red to green, then a second time to lower it. Sneaky.....
  12. Summer Deep

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Memento Mori 2

    MAP16: Another enjoyable map by D. Möller, maybe a touch more difficult than his earlier one and on a slightly larger scale. Plenty of action, few complications, nice layout. I survived until about 90% of the way through it, when I entered the yellow key room armed with just the shotgun and was cornered by two Revenants who seemed to burst out of one of the walls. The Hell Knight in the exit room spawned right behind me but didn't do any damage - how did that happen? 98% kills, 2/4 secrets MAP17: Should probably have been pleased with my performance in this map. I recovered from a poor showing in the blue key area, where the encounter with the Revenants left me at 1% health, to complete the level without dying and also getting 100% secrets and items, and yet there was much frustration - I never found the yellow key, so a significant portion of the map remained unexplored, and was also unable to work out how to get the blue armour. If the YK and the means to get the armour weren't in secret areas or obtainable via secrets, then where were they? Plus, what was that mechanism at the centre of the main room all about (see picture): I 'activated' it, but to no obvious effect. This was also a good map from the visual angle, with some impressive architecture in the area beyond the blue door. 88% kills, 2/2 secrets
  13. Summer Deep

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Memento Mori 2

    MAP31: As a relative newbie in this thread, wasn't quite sure of when to post a review of the secret maps, but obviously it's permitted to deal with at least the first one. Very little to say really. I thought it was a wasted opportunity, and didn't have much interest in playing what looked like an anaemic take on E1 M7. Had the impression that the second secret exit might be somewhere in one of the nukage areas, but couldn't be bothered to look for it and just wanted to get it over with asap. 95% kills, 1/7 secrets
  14. Summer Deep

    remove the "File reviews" panel

    One or two horrible comments here, most notably the crude and unnecessary 'tedious bastards' one. I've reviewed quite a few wads in this section, including a good many 1990s ones, and don't think I've ever done so with an eye to the 'look at me' factor.
  15. Summer Deep

    The DWmegawad Club plays: Memento Mori 2

    MAP15: Nice variety of settings here, and some good quality, engaging action. The opening room illustrates the latter point, though you can't go very far wrong by camping around the opening at the foot of the stairs. The Mancubus room also requires sharp reactions, keeping moving and exploiting the limited amount of cover. The trap involving the two Spectres at the switch in the crusher area was a bit cruel, with considerable unavoidable damage, but there was a reasonably generous 50% of health provided - that, plus the secret soulsphere, if one has obtained it, should see the player through the AV encounter and the red key trap that follows it. No review of an Adam Windsor/Capellan map would be complete without a mention of the Cacoswarm factor - yes, it's fun to take this on once or twice in a level, but I really regretted not saving after so doing, and having to replay it four or five times due to failures later on: the most successful strategy for this seemed to be to camp outside the red door, though conducting the fight in the room with the 'red star' was more exciting, and trying to do so in the yellow key area was best left to 'Doom Gods'.... And what about the secret level exit? OMG, I spent getting on for an hour investigating every square millimetre of the map trying to find it, before mentally giving up. Then, just at what would have been the last moment, pressed the 'use' button almost as a conditioned reflex and discovered perhaps the most audacious secret level exit of all time (or at least until 1996). When is the obvious not at all obvious? I think I'd have put the SSG in the roof of my mouth and pulled the trigger if I'd resorted to looking on YouTube for the solution, but I was about 20 seconds away from doing just that.... 103% kills, 8/9 secrets
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