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HAK3180

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  1. HAK3180

    Halloween wad - Beneath Phobos Lab #5

    Some random mid-play thoughts and then final comments: Darkness + barrel dynamic is cool Early action gets a little tedious at times. I thought an earlier rocket launcher or plasma gun with very limited ammo might have been a nice touch. Maybe in a secret… I really liked the sloped techgreen I enjoy this light dynamic: constant dimming and brightening with some areas having light switches Big finale, although somewhat lacking in identity, is still a nice challenge and a good time. I like how it’s not flooded with cells and you have to watch your rocket shots. The timing got a little off, though, as the Mastermind showed up at the very end and we just kinda boringly dueled one on one. I also think a second arch-vile would not at all be overkill for Ultra-Violence. I finished 94/64/33 in 34:43. Good looking map as usual. I would say that overall it has a nice, spooky atmosphere, but still, the whole thing seems to be side dish. Obviously, there’s a big climax, but something about the rest feels a bit subdued. I think a big thing missing for me personally is significant exploration. My favorite part was the light visor part because that was a bit of a frantic maze race against time. Other than that, there was very little deciding where to go and watching it all come together. Sadly, I would say what I think is your greatest strength as a mapper, based on previous work, was not utilized here. But hey, we’re allowed to do styles that are not our trademark. As for ammo issues, I got very close to empty just one time and then recovered. I would say the version I played is fine for balance purposes.
  2. I am using Action 22 to raise a section of map. The trigger line only borders pain sectors. The target sector starts as a pain sector. Everything in the vicinity of either line/sector has Effect 7 (Damage -2 or -5). Just for fun, I gave every sector in the map Effect 7. No luck. The target sector becomes not a pain sector after crossing the trigger line. Why? I also thought you could make a non-damaging sector into a damaging sector with this action. I must have never tried it, but now I see that doesn't work either? What exactly does Action 22 do?
  3. A brand new Map 14 is ready for your playtesting. There are still 6 untouched maps, but now only one to be completely redone and a few other bigger upgrade projects. Download
  4. I would say the heart of the dilemma comes up mostly in substantial "more gameplay," secrets, as I call them, where there is nevertheless a clear final reward. I think of Deadwing and Steve D (among many others, granted), who would put you through a whole sidequest but then give up the BFG or megaarmor at the end of it. You want to signal right away that this is something more than just optional, but you also want to drive them toward that prize. I suppose a key difference might be whether the prize was visible in the first place. If you come to a substantial secret area having already seen the megasphere you're pretty sure is the end goal of this, then maybe it's better to tag the initial start-of-sidequest sector. But if the prize is not immediately obvious, it might be better to continue the suspense of "what will I find in here?" by withholding DSSECRET until they arrive at the single health bonus or whatever. I sometimes appreciate the sorta Doom 1 approach of "when in doubt, it's a secret," but I also think every secret should require a discrete mental or physical task, whether chained or not. All in all, probably quite low on lists of things Doomers complain about.
  5. Sometimes there is no material difference, but sometimes it’s significant. Say you hump a misaligned wall and a door opens. You walk into an empty STARTAN room, follow a path, shoot a few imps, and drop down onto a platform to get that soul sphere that was visible from the critical path. Or maybe you parkour onto a suspect ledge, work your way around it, then fall to an otherwise unseeable area with a BFG perched on a FLAT20 pedestal. First option is a vote for the STARTAN room and the initial ledge as the secret sector. Second option is a vote for the soul sphere platform and the BFG pedestal as the secret sector . What do you think? This should go in editing maybe?
  6. I used to never get the red key playing that map. You can just jump in the damage floor and teleport to the BFG and yellow key. I always sensed this was a bit hacky, but it was before I played with any in-game secret tracker or even really understood what constituted a secret, so that’s what I always figured I was missing. For me it was back-to-back levels. I don’t remember what happened in Map 27 Monster Condo, but I somehow got stuck in the room that is duplicated. I was stuck for a long time because this was before I knew what IDSPISPOPD had been updated to. Then Map 28 The Spirit World has those shoot switches. I don’t think I knew that was actually a thing from Doom 1. I don’t think I ever realized what I had actually done; I just thought I got lucky or something. (They're all for secrets in Doom 1, right?) I must have done it in Map 18, but it still took me a long time to figure it out in 28. I also got softlocked in the Zimmer room a lot more recently with an SR-50 line skip and a W1 door close situation. Oh, and as an honorable mention, I still did not learn my lesson for TNT's Mill, which is also Map 18. By then I knew how to IDCLIP, but I did not figure out the shoot switch for a long time.
  7. I think the best thing you can do is have one or two main target ports. Test early and often on these and just test for functionality on others, if at all. I hesitate to make compromises like you have described because, in my opinion, it's better to have at least one port that is the perfect representation of what you were trying to achieve than to say essentially, "It's tested thoroughly in all these ports, but none of them ends up being my true intended design." Another philosophy (which you could adopt for subsequent efforts, not this one) would be to avoid having such situations where different ports do very different things. So if you think of such an idea, you don't implement it. That's a different kind of compromise that just stays in your mind and never makes it into the wad for people to see. For me, the biggest ones are manual vertical aim and infinite height. These are such deal breakers to some players that I don't want to say, "These must be turned off." I just make a note that I don't design with them and test a lot less with them. But for the most part, I'm still mentally all in on these being off in my designs, except for shoot switches, which I often make sure to recess properly to prevent GZDoom sequence breaks.
  8. HAK3180

    Cacoward winners being overrated.

    I made a chart* to express my thoughts: The exposure discrepancy is much greater than the quality discrepancy, and frustration about that is understandable. So, while this may be a nitpick, I could conceivably empathize with an objection of "overexposed," not so much "overrated." But you simply cannot recognize tiers of quality without this phenomenon occurring to some degree. Look at pro sports for example. If you're almost good enough to be in the NBA or NFL, you're still nobody. Hopefully, the most interested people will dig deep enough to enjoy the "nonprofessional" efforts as well. I think this community and even this very discussion are proof that they do. *Yes, these are just straight lines thrown together on Microsoft Word with Calibri font.
  9. HAK3180

    Best Sites To Waste Time

    Gotta mention Sporcle. That place owned me when I was still in school.
  10. @Clippy, Hey, thanks for playing and recording. Needless to say, I'm very happy you eventually found the rocket launcher. In one of your runs you opened the door and hit the switch but didn't see the weapon lower. I actually think selecting the rocket launcher at the beginning is a little tougher because it's hard to overkill anything with plasma, but if you rocket a sole former human, for example, that's very wasteful. Glad to have some friends on the video too. Since not one of you had any ideas about how to get the rocket launcher, maybe I'll try something a little different. I might actually use the third key and just give up yellow and red simultaneously. We'll see.
  11. I've released version 13.0, which includes a brand new Map 12 and heavy modifications to Maps 13 and 23, as well as very minor things in other maps. That leaves Map 05 - I've decided I don't like it and will redo it Map 09 - never been started, vague idea only Map 14 - needs moderate - heavy overhaul or replacement Map 15 - needs mild - moderate upgrade Map 18 - needs mild - moderate upgrade Map 19 - needs mild - moderate upgrade or replacement Map 20 - needs significant upgrade and finishing or replacement, never been released Map 28 - never been started, some ideas Map 29 - never been started, vague idea only Map 30 - never been started, extremely vague idea only Map 31 - never been started, ambitious idea Map 32 - new vision never been started, current progress to be abandoned
  12. 1. Final Fantasy VII 2. Classic Doom (1+2+Final+mods) 3. Final Fantasy IV 4. Civilization II 5. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past 6. Super Metroid 7. Pokémon Red 8. Super Smash Bros Melee 9. Mega Man X2 10. Super Mario World I tried to put them in order, but it’s probably more like three or four tiers. It is based mostly on volume of play over the years and enjoyment, very little on “objective” merit. My hardcore gaming years were something like 96-02 and I pretty well stopped gaming cold turkey around 05. Doom is the only thing I have played with any regularity in the last 15 years.
  13. Have you ever filled out a bracket to try to predict the outcomes of a sports tournament (e.g. March Madness)? The odds of guessing the whole thing correctly, even knowing the teams and their seeds, are astronomical. That's continuous balancing. You're predicting outcomes that are dependent on other outcomes that you are also predicting. Pistol start balancing is more like taking every game one at a time. You didn't even have Kansas or North Carolina in the Elite 8? Good news: you still get to make your prediction between those two. If you thought Map 12 was hard and tight on ammo, but the player got through it 200/200 with 600 cells, that faulty prediction has no effect on Map 13. There are ways to make yourself, the creator, less blind to what the player will do in continuous sets, such as holding off on weapons, limiting backpacks, putting berserks on exit switches, fewer substantial secrets, fewer substantial optional paths, etc. Genre is also a factor. But the answer to your question is definitely easier.
  14. I hate to be one who posts without substantial content, but a few have asked, so here's a progress update: I have done very little Doom over the last 6 months or so. That has a lot less to do with lack of desire and more to do with other demands of life. Those demands will be considerably less once we get into summer proper, so I hope to be spending a good amount of time mapping by as early as late June. I have not set any hard deadlines for myself, but I definitely want to wrap this thing up sometime in 23, so definitely look for new maps to start coming at a decent pace by fall. The OP has the latest version, which includes, most notably, updates to Map 22, mainly that it is actually textured now.
  15. HAK3180

    What's your way of making maps?

    I've done a few different things, but my approach seems to have solidified into something like this: Some, not a lot of sans Doom Builder mental planning: overarching themes, signature fight ideas, gimmickry Draw hideous geometry with no texturing but with crude height variety Make level beatable by inserting necessary switches, keys, lifts, etc. (Not all of these, just the most significant ones on the critical path) Title map and decide on music, do it in Slade (this step varies, but usually happens after #2 and before #6) Insert monsters/encounters while simultaneously fine-tuning geometry (A small amount of this can happen simultaneously with #2 and/or #3) Throw supplies down haphazardly Test a lot Do all visual detailing. Map has been mostly monochrome up to this point. Fine tune supply placement and monster placement if necessary Test a little Modify monster placement for different difficulty levels (a small amount of this can happen simultaneously with #4 and #8) Test some more Determine and set par time Done
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