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LouigiVerona

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About LouigiVerona

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  1. LouigiVerona

    The Theory of Modern Wads Design

    @baja blast rd. Thank you very much for your comment! I think the danger of analyzing maps on your own is that at some point you don't feel your analysis is good enough or even correct. There are so many ways to look at it. Also, my initial post _is_ analysis. And it's not nothing, but I reached out to the community because I wanted more help. So, I am absolutely not discarding the idea of continuing to analyze maps! 🙏 Another thing is that analysis is just a part of it. Another part of it is the methodology. Let's say that I generally understand how MAP26 works. But how do I build a map like this? Where do I start? What should I be thinking about? And this is where Catpho's links were super helpful (your comments are featured there too!) Some things that I got from it and already began to practice, with interesting results. 1. Layout-first design. A simple idea, I have actually ran into the same issue as many other mappers - I would get into detailing way too early and then either get stuck or just under-develop the main idea of the level. Now that I began to just super quickly create a level, it became way more fruitful. 2. Looping layouts by boris and your methodology of creating more interconnected maps Both ideas are closely linked, and when I tried doing it like that, I immediately began getting more interesting results. Things like getting a key and appearing in front of the door that needs it became automatic. So, this has been very helpful, and I will now be practicing and exploring this new-found knowledge! 👍
  2. LouigiVerona

    The Theory of Modern Wads Design

    I will definitely play that, btw! :D
  3. LouigiVerona

    The Theory of Modern Wads Design

    Hey everyone! This was really helpful! Everyone's advice was stellar, and I want to give special thanks to @Catpho, those links were exactly what I needed! A great collection. This needs to be documented somewhere!
  4. LouigiVerona

    The Theory of Modern Wads Design

    Folks, Thank you for the responses so far. I edited the post and will add this here, because I think I didn't provide enough background on myself. I am not a very known mapper, so I see many answers assuming that I am a beginner. I am not. I might not be good, but I am not a beginner. I have been making wads for the good part of 15 years. I have created dozens upon dozens of maps, most average, but a couple decent that were even somewhat liked on this very forum. I have experience creating tiny maps, average-sized maps, large maps. The reason why I wanted to point this out is that I'm looking for a bit more advanced advice, not "play more maps" or "start making smaller maps", because this advice is not helpful. I have done all that. I am looking for deeper insight. Even if it's "make smaller maps", okay, but which kind? The answer by @Fonze is much more what I'm looking for (and maybe this is what's going to be useful to other folks, lurking in the background).
  5. Hey everyone! I'd like to discuss the design methodology of maps that feature fast-paced, almost arcade-like gameplay that's prevalent in a lot of modern wads. Think Valiant (especially the Moon levels), Antaresian Reliquary, etc. When I am inspired by maps like these and want to attempt to make a map with a similar feel, I realize that there are a lot of things I am not sure how to do, and so I wanted to hear everyone's opinions, advice and thoughts. The design of the maps in question seems to have these general characteristics: Fairly open and connected architecture Small rooms and corridors are rare, and when there are rooms and corridors (think Antaresian Reliquary, MAP06), everything tends to be connected at multiple angles. In general, rooms tend to have more interesting shapes and connect with each other at different junctures There's usually a high variation of heights Spaces tend to be very large The player is not forced into a linear progression, and any path you take, it's interesting and well-balanced. In fact, a big part of attractiveness of these maps is that their replay value is high at least because of how differently one could choose to tackle each map A lot of automation By which I mean that these maps tend to take advantage of gradually opening sections of the map, sometimes in ways not anticipated by the first time player. Every column, every wall has the potential to contain additional monsters, and existing structures tend to get transformed through lowering of floors and such throughout the level's progress Very well-designed fights Although spaces are open, monster encounters (traps and placement) are very well controlled, almost regardless of which weapons you currently have Good control over sniper monsters. Snipers do exist, but are usually very well used. These are my general observations. Perhaps someone can add additional points. When I am trying to design a map like this, I run into difficulties which demonstrate that I don't entirely understand the design principles behind these modern maps and exactly how should a map designer think about it. Specifically, and in no particular order, I have difficulties with these concepts: The architecture of these levels, although frequently breathtaking, is, first of all, practical. It facilitates fun gameplay and the way rooms are positioned seems to be dividing the level into scenes. However, I am not sure how helpful it is to think about this way, and if it is, what's the right way of going about it. When I design maps, I frequently feel that I don't know where to start and I don't know what I am doing. Like, what should my intent with the architecture be. Modern level architecture seems to have a sense of flow to it. I, on the other hand, struggle to come up with where things have to go. Even if I come up with a relatively interesting location, I am not sure what's the best way to extend it further. I constantly face "writing blocks" where I'm just not sure what has to be beyond what I already have Specifically, I recognize how many of good Doom levels use height variation to constantly feed into the same room to make it interesting: lifts and stairs get the player to platforms from which just moments ago monsters were fighting at her, but now you see the room from a different angle, press buttons and unlock previously closed sections of the same room, etc. Although I recognize the concepts, I find it very difficult to implement it in a way that isn't boring I also find it difficult to create open spaces without fights turning into a mess. If there is a lot of space around, I end up having monsters from everywhere fire into the current location and move towards it. I am not sure how I should design monster placement in order for that to not consistently be a problem. Of course, I get the general idea that monsters should be hidden from view or introduced in a way that prevents it, but exactly how to consistently do it, I am not sure I also wonder whether there is good insight into how to populate a location with different monster types and not have them infighting. Many of the aforementioned modern maps manage to somehow separate monster groups, and the infighting is minimal. I am not entirely sure how to do that. Perhaps, assigning different heights to different monster groups is one method, and I do notice it in some Valiant maps. Curious, if there are more. I frequently run into "design awkwardness": suddenly the stuff I built is inconvenient for what I want to do, so I have to come up with awkward passages to get the player somewhere or some strangely looking lift or stairs. And somehow I find it very difficult to not get into that. I wonder if someone can relate to that, I am not sure I'm giving a good description of this phenomenon, but it just happens all the time A somewhat technical problem: I find it extremely difficult to conceive complex room shapes Everything that I end up designing is rectangles. I have no problem with adding lots of fun details, but the room shapes, stair shapes, all of this is hopelessly rectangular. The only time it works is if I literally take someone's map and copy an interesting room linedef by linedef. Maybe that's just the limitation of my brain, but I have always felt very limited in imagining spaces, and I wonder if anyone has advice for how to improve it. Okay, so this is it. I can definitely write more about it, but I think this is a good start. Really looking forward to everyone's comments on this! p.s.: I am not a very known mapper, so I see many answers assuming that I am a beginner. I am not. I have been making wads for the good part of 15 years. I have created dozens upon dozens of maps, most average, but a couple decent that were even somewhat liked on this very forum. I have experience creating tiny maps, average-sized maps, large maps. The reason why I wanted to point this out is that I'm looking for a bit more advanced advice, not "play more maps" or "start making smaller maps", because this advice is not helpful for me because I did do that. I am looking for deeper insight. Even if it's "make smaller maps", okay, but which kind?
  6. LouigiVerona

    Defaulting to Ultra Violence is terrible, and here's why

    I hard disagree on your summary of the post. It's actually a fairly well written post that asks questions. Yes, the OP has their own opinion, but they actually asked questions - and we're all responding to them. And note that in my several responses I am disagreeing with the OP. Yet, I find the discussion interesting. Having said that, I think whenever we try to convince people, we try to change how they think. It might be difficult, but not futile.
  7. LouigiVerona

    Defaulting to Ultra Violence is terrible, and here's why

    I would actually defend the OP here. I think it's a completely legitimate topic to bring up. A lot of us are not only gamers, but also mappers, and I think these discussions are both interesting and helpful.
  8. LouigiVerona

    Defaulting to Ultra Violence is terrible, and here's why

    Actually, it's a very good idea. Also, I wonder if someone truly missed out on a wad because of a difficulty. I played Valiant on the normal difficulty, but these days I handle it just fine on UV.
  9. LouigiVerona

    Defaulting to Ultra Violence is terrible, and here's why

    I actually disagree that this is a baseless assumption. It is based on how many mappers do in fact make it and on the fact that it's easier to work this way. If anything, your counter-argument is more baseless. You say that "many wads have nearly identical monster counts". The word "many" is very vague here. How much is many? And what percentage of maps is balanced this way? Then you say, "if HNTR" has two extra monsters on UV, you are missing out by not playin HNTR", implying that this is somehow ridiculous. But I would argue - yeah. If some mode has more content, you're missing out on it. And also that I don't think the situation you outline is frequent. Sounds like it almost never happens. And that the more likely scenario is that there are some extra monsters on UV. I started playing on UV precisely because of this: it feels like UV is the intended difficulty, and also with the most content. Whereas other skill levels are just watered down versions. If you say that this assumption is baseless, I would need some evidence that a significant amount of maps aren't like that.
  10. This! In fact, when I link people to my site, I tell them that it's one of those rare specimens of personal sites that only people from the 90s would have :D
  11. LouigiVerona

    Does anyone else wish the Doom Slayer was gender neutral?

    Totally agreed. Would love for there to be a Doomgal! And I am glad that there are now way more women in this community, too!
  12. LouigiVerona

    Did DOOM steal from Alone In The Dark 2??

    By the way, I watched the video multiple times at 2.39 and I cannot hear any Doom sound effects there. Maybe I'm just not hearing it, I don't know, but I obviously know Doom SFX very well and I cannot spot it.
  13. LouigiVerona

    The TF2 Community needs YOU!

    Yeah, makes sense. And, let's face it, TF2 is a really old game by this point. One thing they could do is release it as open source.
  14. LouigiVerona

    The TF2 Community needs YOU!

    I love TF2 and I sympathize with the petition, although I don't know how likely it is to change things. I have been playing TF2 for years and years, and it was some of the most fun time I had. Loved every bit of it... that is, until the game began to be overrun by bots. I am guessing that making bots because way too easy. I don't know if there is even a technical solution to this. There were many, and it's an arms race. Ultimately, you've got fairly simple inputs. I don't know how this can be fixed at all. Having said that, if they fixed it, I'd be back playing in no time!
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