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Sena

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About Sena

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  1. What are the wider implications of Duke having balls of steel?
  2. Sena

    thoughts on The Doom Awards™

    Every year there's going to be at least one group of people upset that their preferred WAD wasn't in the top 10, or that the writeup it got was clearly disproportionately small, or something, but you don't have to out-caco the cacos - if you want to write a detailed piece on your favourite WAD, and it is of good quality, then people will want to read it. If not, then, well here we are.
  3. No Chance by Death-Destiny (2008) This one hardly needs any introduction, although it may need a disclaimer - this WAD is actually quite painless so long as you don't play on the one difficulty setting that the author specifically tells you is extremely difficult and likely unfun, and you don't do the aforementioned but on only one life. For that matter, I found it surprisingly easy to get through for modern slaughter, unlike Sunder, SlaughterMAX and surely plenty of other examples I just can't recall at the current moment, there was never really anything resembling a 'combat puzzle', a section I got stuck on for 10 minutes as I had to try several strategies and routes before finding one that worked. Really, its most difficult moments are just surprises, beginner's traps that can mess you up once (particularly with surprise archviles, which after a while I found to be more obnoxious than interesting), but they aren't too difficult to get through once you know they're there, nothing resembling some of the more deranged slaughtermaps that manage to find a way to always put me in range of hitscanners, while also managing to put enough things in my path to ensure that I cannot take them out, nor even hold my ground comfortably. There isn't much exploration on this map, to an extent it feels like one big room, although it doesn't feel necessarily chaotic as some equally open maps do. It's simple in its construction, but it is at least effective within its intended purpose, and although the aforementioned Sunder is more frustrating at times, it also seemed to have a lot more going on. I'd probably classify myself as someone who lies exactly halfway between the two points of casual players and slaughter junkies, and with that in mind, I found it decent enough. 7/10.
  4. Death's Garden by @volleyvalley (2023) It might seem a bit unambitious by modern standards, but this level is nonetheless refined in all that it sets out to accomplish. It plays a lot like a Doom 1 level, including with its reliance on pinkies who do not produce much of a threat when they can be one-shot with the SSG. Not much to say about it since it is fairly short, there is a segment where shotgunners raised on some platforms have those platforms lowered, which my hoarding tendencies did appreciate, but taken on the whole this makes for a well-crafted single level - not short enough that it feels like it doesn't get the chance to do anything or it would only feel significant as part of a wider package, but still succinct enough that you can breeze through it without too much care. 7/10.
  5. Fun level, despite the OP comment I found UV to be very painless, although maybe that's because of my own tendency to just circle around the level 20 times in a row to instigate infighting, which helps a lot when there's a cyberdemon involved. spotted this one clipping texture tho
  6. Brown and Red by @Benjogami (2016) Although I'm willing to bet it's one of those maps that's a completely different experience on UV, I had a good time with this one. Some bite-sized slaughter that in a world of Timothy Browns and Ribbikses (Ribbiki?) is inarguably on the easier side, but still involved enough in its enemy placement to keep you engaged. It only contains a total of three fights, all of which seem to demand something different: navigating with minimal space, navigating in a large space as enemies (i.e. a proactive threat, rather than simple architectural design) threaten to occupy it and prevent the player from creating a safety barrier, and the third one just having a lot of enemies all come in at once, which demands target prioritisation, ostensibly, but that feature is secondary to the catharsis from just killing things. It doesn't inspire much in the way of commentary, but it has all the essentials, a thoroughly unpretentious map that adheres to the concept of KISS, and never grows boring or tiresome. 8/10
  7. STEVE JOBS by Alexander Stein (1996) Another level based around the gimmick of creating automap art, which includes the (old, rainbow) Apple logo, a crate maze that works as a computer keyboard - perhaps the only instance of a crate maze I've not been annoyed by - and an iPod, although I wouldn't have recognised the latter item if not for other comments on the archive, all I really saw was a rectangle, and I don't think the use of rectangles exactly makes up part of Apple's brand identity. In any case, the level itself is actually okay, notably difficult as its use of health packs is quite sparse, which means running through it all like an idiot may actually have some consequences. Or at least, it would be described as notably difficult for a level that can be beaten in 3-5 minutes, which is the sort of level that is best enjoyed by running through it at least somewhat carelessly, and when played this way, it's serviceable enough. I had a better time with Ubuntu Doom, though. 6/10.
  8. HAM.wad by Alexander Schützner aka "Killerratte" (2013) This one's pretty good, especially for a first time mapping effort. Its strongest area would have to be its soundtrack, but it doesn't falter in anything it approaches. In that regard, if I wanted to show someone a singular level that captures the feeling of Doom - both in the techno-horror visual theming, and the later approaches to more abstract Hellish architecture, and the responses from the player from the differing gameplay circumstances, I think this would be an appropriate choice. It is a level that doesn't provoke me to say much, perhaps because it does stay true to those classic id ideas that I recognise as just being normal, but in every respect, this is a well-crafted level that includes plenty of concepts in its design and gameplay approach, all of which it accomplishes diligently. 8/10.
  9. There might not technically be a first place winner for the Cacowards, but we're not far off from seeing PUSS XXX, and depending on where you look, they don't normally rate things any higher than that.
  10. Sena

    SIGIL 2 !!!

    I've gotten halfway through so far on Crispy, and it works fine, although I had to idclev to start since there's no option directly on the title screen, and it just uses the regular E3 soundtrack which is a bit of a bummer.
  11. Sena

    Your best film of 2023

    Does the Half Life documentary count?
  12. Walking In My Name by Moniac (2001) There's a lot of maps that make use of linedef art, but here's one specifically based around the concept. The problem that arises is that, presumptively, most would agree that gameplay should always come first, but this approach to mapping contradicts that principle, with the end result being some pretty confusing navigation, especially via the repeated use of unmarked teleporters, and a slightly awkward and rigidly flat style of architecture. The combat is pretty good, with a few sections that are quite demanding for the early 2000s, although it is strangely marked by an incessant handing out of backpacks, and an overflowing of rocket and cell ammo far before either appropriate weapon is given to the player. Some good moments here and there, and certainly above average for a first map, but some streamlining and cohesive visual theming would have gone a long way to make this a consistently good map, rather than incidentally so. 6/10.
  13. Sena

    Which musicians have you seen live?

    Bob Dylan, and Old Crow medicine Show, and that's all. Guess I'm not as hardcore as the average Doomworlder.
  14. Area 51 by Keith Hickman, Garth Donovan (2 maps, 1997) I normally dislike 90s maps, but this one manages to be an exception. It comes paired with the Mission Impossible midi because well, it is still the 90s. In any case, this is a solidly designed level, with the attention to detail and theming being its greatest strength, helped in part by its custom textures (I especially liked seeing a belt of ammo on the chaingun box of bullets), but also its creative and charming use of those textures in developing its rooms, which definitely goes a long way in selling the idea of exploring the facility further, and venturing deeper - comparing it to Questionable Ethics from Half Life would be the obvious choice, which makes this level all the more remarkable, as it came out a year prior to Half Life. Its second level is admittedly less interesting, both of them contained around 230 enemies, yet the second one took me around half as long to beat, and it did seem to be overall less polished, with much wider, mono-textured hallways without much going on, and seeming to only indicate that having large spaces to explore matters far less than having spaces that are properly thought out, with meticulous attention to detail. Not a bad moment in sight, this would be an easy contender for one of my all-time favourite maps from its decade. 7/10.
  15. Risk Blazer (2022) by SuperCupcakeTactics This is a runner map, and seeing as I ended up with just over double the par time of 2:10 displayed at the beginning, that makes for a pretty good illustration of how accustomed I am to this sort of gameplay. Still, I did enjoy it, although I normally have a distaste for levels that add first-person platforming, when it is the centrepiece of the level, even a naysayer like myself can get behind it. The level does include a couple of beginner's traps, and while in this context I don't mind having to navigate a falling platform that will lead to death by nukage if I'm not fast enough, shooting at a row of explosive barrels which activate a crusher on a voodoo doll half a minute later is a gameplay decision I'm not really sure feels fair - especially when it took me a few deaths from what appeared to be nothing to realise my mistake, as I at first assumed I was just too slow walking through the current section. Still, I enjoyed this one, its relatively short length is to its benefit, and the custom textures and soundtrack, along with its relatively underused genre produces an experience that challenges your abilities in a specific manner that helps it to stand out from the crowd. 7/10.
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