Bloodshedder

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  1. A.W - AndyNicka Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 171.46 KB - Reviewed by: bzzrak Why look at this. A newbie's first mapset. Betcha it sucks, heh. ...damn. A.W. is a 6-map set released in January '17 by the anonymous AndyNicka, intended for vanilla. So far this has been his only release, which is kind of a shame, as it, rather unexpectedly, mostly kicks a$$. Generally it looks and feels like it came straight out of a time machine from '96 or so. But in the best, best possible way. If AW hit /idgames straight away instead of lying in the time machine for two decades, I'm sure that today it would be one of those "hidden gem" WADs that every one of us came across while experimenting with the "Random file" button. Do modern kids even remember what that thing was?? Ah, memories. Um, I got carried away a bit. I played A.W. with Crispy Doom 4.0, HMP difficulty, continuous, no saves. Time-wise it will consume an hour, maybe two if you're even more oblivious than me. The levels are mostly a mix of wood, stone and marble themes, which looks very 90s. But just like in every decent and not-so-decent 90s WAD, you'll occasionally encounter an environment that sticks out, like hell or craaaates. It all looks quite comfy and warm, even if crude. The detail is not really as plentiful as it could've been; actually it's quite scarce, but it fits the spirit of the set, so it's cool. You won't notice it anyway, if you're at least a little like myself. The author makes a lot of use of mid-textures, particularly the grate ones. Moreover, most of the time those grates separate the player from groups of monsters and may visually obscure them as well. Not just ugly, but also annoying. Andy seems to be fine with the technical side of things. The levels worked properly in Crispy Doom, which deserves respect. (Some switches do need to be pressed a few times in order to fully work though, unless you're using a particular PrBoom+ or ZDoom compatibility option.) Also a few minor cosmetic glitches can be found throughout the set, but that's not really that important, is it? Now, about the gameplay. (I played on HMP skill level, for the record.) The combat with monsters is quite easy. The author (thankfully!) doesn't overload his maps with annoying and stupid traps that, in this day and age, seem to be the very essence of mapping. However, it's the maps' design that enhances the monsters' threat level and also works as a danger on its own. Other than the so-classic-that-it's-repulsive "Spectres in the dark" cliché (which is present on several maps, mostly on MAP03), there are also things like monsters on lifts, or teleports, or even just big height differences that make the monster invisible for you, but not vice versa. Surprisingly, it never felt too cheap to me. Along with all that, Andy makes a LOT of use of teleports. It's quite confusing to be honest, but, taking the overall small size of the levels into account, the confusion doesn't last too long. Oh, by the way, the effect of most switches is NOT immediately visible, as all the badassiest mappers advise you to do. But you'll figure it out relatively quickly (unless you're really dumb keklolXD). MAP01 -- generic wood+marble combination. The combat is very relaxed. Looks very pleasant, nothing too annoying. Can be completed in two minutes. MAP02 -- SKIP THIS PIECE OF (insert favourite word) IF YOU VALUE YOUR SANITY. Just don't. Trust me. MAP03 -- a wooden base, where you get treated to a tiny, but cute outdoor area. However, the bulk of the level relies on darkness as the main challenge, and you'll spend a good part of the time wandering around a maze which is also, coincidentally, quite dark. Oh, and it's got Spectres. Be sure to use the automap and your weapons (to light up the path), find the light-amp goggles, and then you should be fine. A quite strange level. MAP04 -- a long, confusing level. Looks like a blend of MAP01 and 03, but is also a biiiiit threatening. Furthermore, there's a lot of rooms here that look very, very similar, like, you are in a room or corridor or something, and there are monsters shooting at you from behind some grates. Not a bad level, but kind of meh. MAP05 -- a small level that mostly focuses on a teleport puzzle (bleh) and a bit of crate platforming (bleh). I'd say this is a decent, but forgettable level. MAP06 -- an amazing finish to AW. A skilful combination of several themes. The first part is some sort of industrial-ish place, with bricks and wood planks and all that. Also there's an... underground computer lab, I guess? Then you get outside, into a small and quite cute chunk of outdoorsiness. Around this part you get the red key, and I'll tell you this, beware, you might die a lot there. That is followed by a big, enormous, grandiose, beautiful green/gray marble area. From here you'll reach some sort of yuck indoor fetid rocky tunnels or something, the blue key is here somewhere. Somehow (I don't remember the exact process) you obtain the yellow key as well and proceed to... THE BIG NASTY MEAN BOSS FIGHT OH MY GOD I'M SO SCARED SOMEBODY CALL MOMMY PLEASE!!! Just kidding. Even I didn't find the Cyberdemon and a handful of other punks too hard. One more spoiler is that there's an Invulnerability sphere behind the Cyberdemon, which you are free2grab. There's a bit more of fighting after that, but you should be fine. And That's All Folks, AW has exhausted its supply of... itself, I guess? I really don't think out my smart phrases as much as I should. Overall, A.W. is a great 90s-styled mapset; I'm sure any nostalgic oldschooler would shed at least a lonely manly tear playing this delight of a WAD. And the rest of us can still have a bit of fun here. ...what does A.W. mean anyway? NAM Ally Green Beret Items ACS Enter Script - Huey Greenhorn Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 5.43 MB - Reviewed by: Walter confetti This is a little patch for ZDoom that gives you a team of four helpful bots, and they will help you while playing. When they die, they give you a nice weapon (a chaingun most of the time) with some ammo, and a new health kit that works like the Duke Nukem 3D medikit item. The guys are pretty helpful, but the only bug I found is that their weaponry is a little overpowered (maybe on hard/slaughter maps), and they don't fall down ledges. This last one is the worst problem for me, since seeing how this thing works I've put one bot in action at the start of map01; it worked pretty efficiently, but when I jumped down the ledge I expected the bot to follow, but it remained in its place, what a good soldier. I had to use another one to have another support through the map. Overall, a nice and helpful mod, you can always check it out. Planisphere - Perro Seco Doom 2 - Single Player - Limit Removing - 726.4 KB - Reviewed by: Not Jabba Planisphere is one of those overlooked gems. The level dates back to around 2011 (or at least that's when I first played it), but it never got an /idgames upload until this year, and it was probably vastly overshadowed at the time of its initial release by the emergence of mappers like skillsaw and valkiriforce. This map also has practically nothing to do with Planisphere 2, which some long-time forumgoers may remember as that map that recreates all of New York City and lags like crazy. Planisphere 1 is just a nice medium-sized classic city map in a more conventional Doom 2 style. The map is pretty open and laid-back, and it's mostly fun for the sense of exploration and all of the creative ideas that are packed into it. It's well detailed in the style of TVR! or Kama Sutra, with sector objects and signs of damage all over the place -- flipped cars, street lights, trains where you walk through every car and kill zombies, and all that other good stuff. Personally, I can never get too much of it. According to the story, you've been traveling by train, and then suddenly the apocalypse happens. The train grinds to a halt next to a missile launch facility, and it's up to you to keep the demons from using the missiles against humankind. The first half is just hunting around the city, but the second half is where it gets really interesting. You enter the demons' portal and end up in a far-future post-apocalyptic version of the world that includes a canyon full of demons, a creepy and seemingly empty techbase, and a vast toxic sea where nukage pours down from the sky. After all of this, you return to the city, clear the guards out from around the missiles, and find your way to the exit. You also have the option of hunting down an army of SS Nazis that are hiding out in a fairly large secret area in the city -- which I think works pretty well and doesn't feel out of place, since it's a secret and they're not just thrown in as regular enemies. All in all, the map has tons of interesting ideas and great storytelling, and it always feels like it's giving you something worth seeing. Planisphere was a very good level for its time, and I think it has aged pretty well; it has a distinct classic feel, but it remains very fun to play. JNNHangar - joshthenesnerd Ultimate Doom - Single Player - Vanilla - 119.63 KB - Reviewed by: Memfis The readme of this wad contains probably the most passionate credits section ever written. I could almost feel it clouding my judgment while playing. Then again, why not? We should be nice to newcomers after all. That's right: JNNHangar is yet another first time effort uploaded to the archives, and I have to say it is one of the better ones in the "genre". Sure, it doesn't have a coherent theme, the monster placement is rather basic, and the texture alignment could use more work. But there is a lot of variety, constant action, and some pretty cool surprises to keep you entertained. It's just a nice and chill map you can play without worrying about your health too much. Not convinced yet? Just open the readme... MDK Skies Pack - Bzzrak Ktazzz Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 514.98 KB - Reviewed by: Walter confetti This is a little graphic wad made by bzzrak with a little demo wad including six new (huge) skies from the game MDK, and they all look pretty good. If you're looking for a good sky for your own levels, take a chance at this! Deathtrap - sKydran Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 59.46 KB - Reviewed by: Walter confetti This is a level for Doom 2 made by sKydran (how to pronounce your nickname? Sky dran? S. Kydran?) and works with ZDoom and derivative ports (I played this on Zandronum). According to the text file, the map replaces MAP01 (to be more precise, only one new level without any hint of the map slot) so imagine my surprise when I didn't find it in any of the classic slots the first time i played this wad and neither in other alternative slot. Tried MAP33, MAP34, MAP35, even MAP00. Nothing. At first I started to think this level was broke, so I checked it out with SLADE3 and... check the first screenshot, but it is a pretty weird choice for a map slot and it will surprise you like me, maybe. Anyway, the level itself is pretty nice, with some cool detailing here and there and a solid theme of a techbase beginning map for some megawad or map pack of sorts, and the gameplay follows the starter map concept, with an easy/medium difficulty and some simple puzzles after the red key door section for spicing up play. Beat the level and you beat the game. Yeah, is one of those kinds of maps. I expected something harder for a map called "Deathtrap", but it was pleasant to play, overall. Take a chance at playing this map, I'm expecting maybe a mapset with more stuff from this author in the future! Arena Boss Fights - Aiden (Maisth) Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 43.8 KB - Reviewed by: Obsidian Before you ask: yes, I picked this wad simply because it had the words "boss fights" in the title. I love boss fights: there's something magical about pitting your wits and skill against an entity specifically designed to test your mettle. I love the atmosphere that comes with boss fights, I love the gimmicks they can sometimes indulge in - you get the picture. I could waffle about bosses all day, but that's not what I'm here for. So, what does arena_bf.wad have to offer in the way of bosses? To be honest, not a whole lot: the wad consists of one level with three encounters modeled after the boss battles from the original Doom. And how do they measure up? Welllll... let me count the ways: - The baron fight is a (somewhat toothless) tango on some walkways above lava. Seeing as the wad gives you the SSG off the bat to take care of the Barons (yeah, this wad is for Doom II for some reason) they become somewhat trivial to take down in short order and the experience suffers as a result. I love the SSG as much as the next Doom marine, but I have to admit that the shotgun/chaingun combo against the Barons in the original hit the balance of difficulty in taking the bruisers down. Well, unless you found the rocket launcher, but I digress. - The Cyberdemon fight consists of ol' Cyb on a raised platform and a plasma rifle that you can use to effortlessly shave off most of his health. Considering the threat of the original tussle was the Cyberdemon's mobility, this does effectively handicap one of its greatest assets. - Finally, the SM fight has you hiding behind pillars in the corners of the arena and popping your head around to fire off rockets. It isn't terribly exciting, all told. :/ On the plus side, there's just enough ammo to get the job done and the wad doesn't drag its heels too much. The author states that this was something made on the fly to unwind, and at the end of the day it's basically inoffensive: I don't really recommend it, but I don't hate it either. That's all I have to say on it, honestly. Fnord. Impact - greendingbat Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 23.22 KB - Reviewed by: Obsidian First of all, I feel like I should mention that I initially thought the username of the guy who made this wad was greedingbat. I have no idea why, it makes no sense. Ahem. Impact is a single-level wad for Doom II that (according to the textfile at least) was made with the express intention of feeling like an intro map. A noble aspiration to be sure, and to the map's credit it does have that feel somewhat: it does its best to invoke that MAP01 feel with the texturing scheme and length. I actually caught myself thinking of D2TWID's MAP01 at one point, so there's definitely something here that works. I wouldn't say it completely succeeds in its venture though: the map itself feels a bit too linear for my blood, and the short map length is rather in-advisably used to introduce the Shotgunner, Demon and chaingun in fairly short order. Bearing in mind that these elements aren't introduced in Doom II until MAP02 and MAP03, having all of them introduced so quickly makes the map feel shorter than it is and actively does it a disservice. This ain't Pistol Panic darling, you're well within your right to take it slow. Gripes aside though, impact.wad is pretty decent and accomplishes what it set out to do for the most part: perhaps you could make the case that it'd be better utilized in a mapset of similar maps, but it's still a decent (if short) romp. By the looks of things this is the mapper's first map too, so I'd say this is a decently promising start, and it'll be nice to see where they go from here. Would I recommend you download it? If you're looking for something simple and short to unwind, then go for it. Just make sure you aren't allergic to D_RUNNIN. Sinful Outpost - Paul Corfiatis (Pcorf) Doom 2 - Single Player - Limit Removing - 284.24 KB - Reviewed by: leodoom85 Sinful Outpost is a standalone map made by our friend, Paul Corfiatis, involving some hellish architecture combined with a nice sky and more traps... of course. Without further ado, let's go! It's a nice start for sure (first image) with some imps and zombies shooting you from afar, but you can easily dispatch them with some well-placed bullets. When you advance, you see the soulsphere, the BFG (secret areas), and some nice green armor that will save you. Surprisingly, the blood pool doesn't hurt, which is great. The keys are always followed by some traps, and this map is no exception. When picking up the blue skull, cacos will appear along with some minor resistance. Fortunately, some secrets are easy to spot (like the soulsphere and the berserk with some medkits in the next area). There's an SSG and more enemies to kill before the next main area. I like that the map lets you see the next areas, showing the interconnection and allowing some planning by the player (second image). And be sure of it, because once you pick up the yellow skull, a big group of monsters will spawn including a pain elemental. The next areas are like the calm before the storm (third image) because the fights serve as a sort of climax before reaching the red key area and then going to the red door after that. The encounters are well-paced for those areas, including an acid pool and more traps. Very important thing here... don't forget to discover more secrets, which come in handy. The last area is where the map gets even more entertaining to play (fourth image), where you see some revenants and monsters that work as turrets in each side and the exit right in front of you. The architecture in that area is effective for trying to keeping you at bay. I was surprised when that archie spawned suddenly before reaching the exit... that bastard. You know the bad part of this? I picked up both the BFG and the megasphere after I killed all of the monsters... sigh... Overall, it's a great and solid map that it's fairly difficult and enjoyable. I ended up getting 100% for everything because the secrets are not hard to find. Great job Paul. The /newstuff Chronicles is a usually-weekly roundup of new items uploaded to the /idgames archive, and it is written entirely by community members like you. If you wish to contribute, the /newstuff Review Center is the place to do so. Register on the Doomworld Forums first if you don't already have an account, because you need one to submit reviews. Special thanks goes to the nearly 300 users who have submitted reviews over the past several years.
  2. A.W - AndyNicka Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 171.46 KB - Reviewed by: bzzrak Why look at this. A newbie's first mapset. Betcha it sucks, heh. ...damn. A.W. is a 6-map set released in January '17 by the anonymous AndyNicka, intended for vanilla. So far this has been his only release, which is kind of a shame, as it, rather unexpectedly, mostly kicks a$$. Generally it looks and feels like it came straight out of a time machine from '96 or so. But in the best, best possible way. If AW hit /idgames straight away instead of lying in the time machine for two decades, I'm sure that today it would be one of those "hidden gem" WADs that every one of us came across while experimenting with the "Random file" button. Do modern kids even remember what that thing was?? Ah, memories. Um, I got carried away a bit. I played A.W. with Crispy Doom 4.0, HMP difficulty, continuous, no saves. Time-wise it will consume an hour, maybe two if you're even more oblivious than me. The levels are mostly a mix of wood, stone and marble themes, which looks very 90s. But just like in every decent and not-so-decent 90s WAD, you'll occasionally encounter an environment that sticks out, like hell or craaaates. It all looks quite comfy and warm, even if crude. The detail is not really as plentiful as it could've been; actually it's quite scarce, but it fits the spirit of the set, so it's cool. You won't notice it anyway, if you're at least a little like myself. The author makes a lot of use of mid-textures, particularly the grate ones. Moreover, most of the time those grates separate the player from groups of monsters and may visually obscure them as well. Not just ugly, but also annoying. Andy seems to be fine with the technical side of things. The levels worked properly in Crispy Doom, which deserves respect. (Some switches do need to be pressed a few times in order to fully work though, unless you're using a particular PrBoom+ or ZDoom compatibility option.) Also a few minor cosmetic glitches can be found throughout the set, but that's not really that important, is it? Now, about the gameplay. (I played on HMP skill level, for the record.) The combat with monsters is quite easy. The author (thankfully!) doesn't overload his maps with annoying and stupid traps that, in this day and age, seem to be the very essence of mapping. However, it's the maps' design that enhances the monsters' threat level and also works as a danger on its own. Other than the so-classic-that-it's-repulsive "Spectres in the dark" cliché (which is present on several maps, mostly on MAP03), there are also things like monsters on lifts, or teleports, or even just big height differences that make the monster invisible for you, but not vice versa. Surprisingly, it never felt too cheap to me. Along with all that, Andy makes a LOT of use of teleports. It's quite confusing to be honest, but, taking the overall small size of the levels into account, the confusion doesn't last too long. Oh, by the way, the effect of most switches is NOT immediately visible, as all the badassiest mappers advise you to do. But you'll figure it out relatively quickly (unless you're really dumb keklolXD). MAP01 -- generic wood+marble combination. The combat is very relaxed. Looks very pleasant, nothing too annoying. Can be completed in two minutes. MAP02 -- SKIP THIS PIECE OF (insert favourite word) IF YOU VALUE YOUR SANITY. Just don't. Trust me. MAP03 -- a wooden base, where you get treated to a tiny, but cute outdoor area. However, the bulk of the level relies on darkness as the main challenge, and you'll spend a good part of the time wandering around a maze which is also, coincidentally, quite dark. Oh, and it's got Spectres. Be sure to use the automap and your weapons (to light up the path), find the light-amp goggles, and then you should be fine. A quite strange level. MAP04 -- a long, confusing level. Looks like a blend of MAP01 and 03, but is also a biiiiit threatening. Furthermore, there's a lot of rooms here that look very, very similar, like, you are in a room or corridor or something, and there are monsters shooting at you from behind some grates. Not a bad level, but kind of meh. MAP05 -- a small level that mostly focuses on a teleport puzzle (bleh) and a bit of crate platforming (bleh). I'd say this is a decent, but forgettable level. MAP06 -- an amazing finish to AW. A skilful combination of several themes. The first part is some sort of industrial-ish place, with bricks and wood planks and all that. Also there's an... underground computer lab, I guess? Then you get outside, into a small and quite cute chunk of outdoorsiness. Around this part you get the red key, and I'll tell you this, beware, you might die a lot there. That is followed by a big, enormous, grandiose, beautiful green/gray marble area. From here you'll reach some sort of yuck indoor fetid rocky tunnels or something, the blue key is here somewhere. Somehow (I don't remember the exact process) you obtain the yellow key as well and proceed to... THE BIG NASTY MEAN BOSS FIGHT OH MY GOD I'M SO SCARED SOMEBODY CALL MOMMY PLEASE!!! Just kidding. Even I didn't find the Cyberdemon and a handful of other punks too hard. One more spoiler is that there's an Invulnerability sphere behind the Cyberdemon, which you are free2grab. There's a bit more of fighting after that, but you should be fine. And That's All Folks, AW has exhausted its supply of... itself, I guess? I really don't think out my smart phrases as much as I should. Overall, A.W. is a great 90s-styled mapset; I'm sure any nostalgic oldschooler would shed at least a lonely manly tear playing this delight of a WAD. And the rest of us can still have a bit of fun here. ...what does A.W. mean anyway? NAM Ally Green Beret Items ACS Enter Script - Huey Greenhorn Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 5.43 MB - Reviewed by: Walter confetti This is a little patch for ZDoom that gives you a team of four helpful bots, and they will help you while playing. When they die, they give you a nice weapon (a chaingun most of the time) with some ammo, and a new health kit that works like the Duke Nukem 3D medikit item. The guys are pretty helpful, but the only bug I found is that their weaponry is a little overpowered (maybe on hard/slaughter maps), and they don't fall down ledges. This last one is the worst problem for me, since seeing how this thing works I've put one bot in action at the start of map01; it worked pretty efficiently, but when I jumped down the ledge I expected the bot to follow, but it remained in its place, what a good soldier. I had to use another one to have another support through the map. Overall, a nice and helpful mod, you can always check it out. Planisphere - Perro Seco Doom 2 - Single Player - Limit Removing - 726.4 KB - Reviewed by: Not Jabba Planisphere is one of those overlooked gems. The level dates back to around 2011 (or at least that's when I first played it), but it never got an /idgames upload until this year, and it was probably vastly overshadowed at the time of its initial release by the emergence of mappers like skillsaw and valkiriforce. This map also has practically nothing to do with Planisphere 2, which some long-time forumgoers may remember as that map that recreates all of New York City and lags like crazy. Planisphere 1 is just a nice medium-sized classic city map in a more conventional Doom 2 style. The map is pretty open and laid-back, and it's mostly fun for the sense of exploration and all of the creative ideas that are packed into it. It's well detailed in the style of TVR! or Kama Sutra, with sector objects and signs of damage all over the place -- flipped cars, street lights, trains where you walk through every car and kill zombies, and all that other good stuff. Personally, I can never get too much of it. According to the story, you've been traveling by train, and then suddenly the apocalypse happens. The train grinds to a halt next to a missile launch facility, and it's up to you to keep the demons from using the missiles against humankind. The first half is just hunting around the city, but the second half is where it gets really interesting. You enter the demons' portal and end up in a far-future post-apocalyptic version of the world that includes a canyon full of demons, a creepy and seemingly empty techbase, and a vast toxic sea where nukage pours down from the sky. After all of this, you return to the city, clear the guards out from around the missiles, and find your way to the exit. You also have the option of hunting down an army of SS Nazis that are hiding out in a fairly large secret area in the city -- which I think works pretty well and doesn't feel out of place, since it's a secret and they're not just thrown in as regular enemies. All in all, the map has tons of interesting ideas and great storytelling, and it always feels like it's giving you something worth seeing. Planisphere was a very good level for its time, and I think it has aged pretty well; it has a distinct classic feel, but it remains very fun to play. JNNHangar - joshthenesnerd Ultimate Doom - Single Player - Vanilla - 119.63 KB - Reviewed by: Memfis The readme of this wad contains probably the most passionate credits section ever written. I could almost feel it clouding my judgment while playing. Then again, why not? We should be nice to newcomers after all. That's right: JNNHangar is yet another first time effort uploaded to the archives, and I have to say it is one of the better ones in the "genre". Sure, it doesn't have a coherent theme, the monster placement is rather basic, and the texture alignment could use more work. But there is a lot of variety, constant action, and some pretty cool surprises to keep you entertained. It's just a nice and chill map you can play without worrying about your health too much. Not convinced yet? Just open the readme... MDK Skies Pack - Bzzrak Ktazzz Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 514.98 KB - Reviewed by: Walter confetti This is a little graphic wad made by bzzrak with a little demo wad including six new (huge) skies from the game MDK, and they all look pretty good. If you're looking for a good sky for your own levels, take a chance at this! Deathtrap - sKydran Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 59.46 KB - Reviewed by: Walter confetti This is a level for Doom 2 made by sKydran (how to pronounce your nickname? Sky dran? S. Kydran?) and works with ZDoom and derivative ports (I played this on Zandronum). According to the text file, the map replaces MAP01 (to be more precise, only one new level without any hint of the map slot) so imagine my surprise when I didn't find it in any of the classic slots the first time i played this wad and neither in other alternative slot. Tried MAP33, MAP34, MAP35, even MAP00. Nothing. At first I started to think this level was broke, so I checked it out with SLADE3 and... check the first screenshot, but it is a pretty weird choice for a map slot and it will surprise you like me, maybe. Anyway, the level itself is pretty nice, with some cool detailing here and there and a solid theme of a techbase beginning map for some megawad or map pack of sorts, and the gameplay follows the starter map concept, with an easy/medium difficulty and some simple puzzles after the red key door section for spicing up play. Beat the level and you beat the game. Yeah, is one of those kinds of maps. I expected something harder for a map called "Deathtrap", but it was pleasant to play, overall. Take a chance at playing this map, I'm expecting maybe a mapset with more stuff from this author in the future! Arena Boss Fights - Aiden (Maisth) Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 43.8 KB - Reviewed by: Obsidian Before you ask: yes, I picked this wad simply because it had the words "boss fights" in the title. I love boss fights: there's something magical about pitting your wits and skill against an entity specifically designed to test your mettle. I love the atmosphere that comes with boss fights, I love the gimmicks they can sometimes indulge in - you get the picture. I could waffle about bosses all day, but that's not what I'm here for. So, what does arena_bf.wad have to offer in the way of bosses? To be honest, not a whole lot: the wad consists of one level with three encounters modeled after the boss battles from the original Doom. And how do they measure up? Welllll... let me count the ways: - The baron fight is a (somewhat toothless) tango on some walkways above lava. Seeing as the wad gives you the SSG off the bat to take care of the Barons (yeah, this wad is for Doom II for some reason) they become somewhat trivial to take down in short order and the experience suffers as a result. I love the SSG as much as the next Doom marine, but I have to admit that the shotgun/chaingun combo against the Barons in the original hit the balance of difficulty in taking the bruisers down. Well, unless you found the rocket launcher, but I digress. - The Cyberdemon fight consists of ol' Cyb on a raised platform and a plasma rifle that you can use to effortlessly shave off most of his health. Considering the threat of the original tussle was the Cyberdemon's mobility, this does effectively handicap one of its greatest assets. - Finally, the SM fight has you hiding behind pillars in the corners of the arena and popping your head around to fire off rockets. It isn't terribly exciting, all told. :/ On the plus side, there's just enough ammo to get the job done and the wad doesn't drag its heels too much. The author states that this was something made on the fly to unwind, and at the end of the day it's basically inoffensive: I don't really recommend it, but I don't hate it either. That's all I have to say on it, honestly. Fnord. Impact - greendingbat Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 23.22 KB - Reviewed by: Obsidian First of all, I feel like I should mention that I initially thought the username of the guy who made this wad was greedingbat. I have no idea why, it makes no sense. Ahem. Impact is a single-level wad for Doom II that (according to the textfile at least) was made with the express intention of feeling like an intro map. A noble aspiration to be sure, and to the map's credit it does have that feel somewhat: it does its best to invoke that MAP01 feel with the texturing scheme and length. I actually caught myself thinking of D2TWID's MAP01 at one point, so there's definitely something here that works. I wouldn't say it completely succeeds in its venture though: the map itself feels a bit too linear for my blood, and the short map length is rather in-advisably used to introduce the Shotgunner, Demon and chaingun in fairly short order. Bearing in mind that these elements aren't introduced in Doom II until MAP02 and MAP03, having all of them introduced so quickly makes the map feel shorter than it is and actively does it a disservice. This ain't Pistol Panic darling, you're well within your right to take it slow. Gripes aside though, impact.wad is pretty decent and accomplishes what it set out to do for the most part: perhaps you could make the case that it'd be better utilized in a mapset of similar maps, but it's still a decent (if short) romp. By the looks of things this is the mapper's first map too, so I'd say this is a decently promising start, and it'll be nice to see where they go from here. Would I recommend you download it? If you're looking for something simple and short to unwind, then go for it. Just make sure you aren't allergic to D_RUNNIN. Sinful Outpost - Paul Corfiatis (Pcorf) Doom 2 - Single Player - Limit Removing - 284.24 KB - Reviewed by: leodoom85 Sinful Outpost is a standalone map made by our friend, Paul Corfiatis, involving some hellish architecture combined with a nice sky and more traps... of course. Without further ado, let's go! It's a nice start for sure (first image) with some imps and zombies shooting you from afar, but you can easily dispatch them with some well-placed bullets. When you advance, you see the soulsphere, the BFG (secret areas), and some nice green armor that will save you. Surprisingly, the blood pool doesn't hurt, which is great. The keys are always followed by some traps, and this map is no exception. When picking up the blue skull, cacos will appear along with some minor resistance. Fortunately, some secrets are easy to spot (like the soulsphere and the berserk with some medkits in the next area). There's an SSG and more enemies to kill before the next main area. I like that the map lets you see the next areas, showing the interconnection and allowing some planning by the player (second image). And be sure of it, because once you pick up the yellow skull, a big group of monsters will spawn including a pain elemental. The next areas are like the calm before the storm (third image) because the fights serve as a sort of climax before reaching the red key area and then going to the red door after that. The encounters are well-paced for those areas, including an acid pool and more traps. Very important thing here... don't forget to discover more secrets, which come in handy. The last area is where the map gets even more entertaining to play (fourth image), where you see some revenants and monsters that work as turrets in each side and the exit right in front of you. The architecture in that area is effective for trying to keeping you at bay. I was surprised when that archie spawned suddenly before reaching the exit... that bastard. You know the bad part of this? I picked up both the BFG and the megasphere after I killed all of the monsters... sigh... Overall, it's a great and solid map that it's fairly difficult and enjoyable. I ended up getting 100% for everything because the secrets are not hard to find. Great job Paul. The /newstuff Chronicles is a usually-weekly roundup of new items uploaded to the /idgames archive, and it is written entirely by community members like you. If you wish to contribute, the /newstuff Review Center is the place to do so. Register on the Doomworld Forums first if you don't already have an account, because you need one to submit reviews. Special thanks goes to the nearly 300 users who have submitted reviews over the past several years. View full news article
  3. Quantum Strike - Spectre01 (rileymartin) Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 1.97 MB - Reviewed by: Csonicgo Oh dear. I had written a scathing review of this, but the author was nice enough to message me personally and ask me to give him my honest opinion on the map. So instead of editing the review, I scrapped it entirely and started over. So, here goes. Quantum Strike is a set of three slaughtermaps with something most slaughtermaps don't have: sane difficulty settings. However, because I was dumb and played on UV, I kept getting my ass kicked. After many, many tries to get out of the first set of rooms in MAP01, I was about ready to give up, but then I read the text file (hurrrr), and discovered that UV was supposed to be intentionally terrible. Well, that explains everything. So, gameplay is exactly what people expect from a slaughtermap - a relentless barrage of hate and death. But there is something in each encounter that I haven't seen in many slaughtermaps - ways to avoid attacks. Let me demonstrate what I mean. MAP01 starts in a hallway with an arch-vile behind you. At the start. AT THE START. Naturally, you want to run, but you're trapped behind a door that blazes open to reveal - you guessed it - hitscanners. To the left of you is a pole made of blue skull key door textures. Guess who's going pole dancing? What ensues is a lot of failed attempts to beat each "wave" of enemies, using either the environment to dodge, or your weapons to stun. Every few feet you walk, you just might get owned. Arena-style fights are here, are way overdone, and quite honestly stress me out. My biggest issue with the Arena fights in these maps is that a lot of them use teleporting monsters, so you never, ever, ever know what to expect. Think of a minefield, but the mines move. Not to mention a section where cacodemons pour out of an area for what seems like hours. If you like slaughtermaps you'll enjoy this I guess, but there is something that ruins this map for me and it's not the game play, it's... well, let's take a look! Ow, my eyes. It's a shame that this screenshot is a static image, because in reality, everything - EVERY texture is scrolling. It's garish, it's irritating, nauseating, and the ultimate in Gothic99/KDIZD-esque overkill. Boy, I never thought I'd say that in 2017. The other way I can describe the level of detail is a Victorian-era dollhouse, where the house is so detailed that looks like someone figured out how to shrink a real house. This doesn't just affect the visuals; it affects movement. Every little detail sticking out from the walls into the player's space makes using projectile weapons that much more dangerous. But hey, at least the mapper didn't booby-trap stimpacks like DV0! A new monster, the afrit, has been added that replaces the Commander Keen - which has wayyy too much health. The attack is also the most evil thing I've ever encountered, combining mancubus and revenant attacks. WTF AVOID. Here are my recommendations for the mapper: * Remove as much of the crazy detail as possible. Good lord, there's no reason for computer textures to scroll. * Implement better lighting in the fullbright areas. Why so many lamp decorations? * Take into the account the few moments of immobility after teleporting. There are many many times that I died simply because I couldn't move. This is a -complevel 9 wad, but infinite height is expected to be disabled, and freelook enabled. This could explain a lot of my frustration, because I play with mostly vanilla settings, and never thought to check that stuff. And yet... I couldn't stop playing the thing! This map sucks, 5/5. If you think you can take the sensory overload, give it a shot! Tutorial: 9-Level Spiral (3D Stairs) - JagDogger2525 Doom 2 - Single Player - GZDoom - 32.28 KB Reviewed by: Csonicgo This is an interesting tutorial level demonstrating a spiral staircase. There are a few monsters thrown in as a demonstration of what to expect with 3D floors, and a switch at the top. Do NOT expect software mode to work, unless you are using the experimental sofware poly renderer. What I found interesting about this map is how odd it feels to climb the stairs. 3D floor use like this is very rare, and I think an elevator would have done just as good of a job. But for some kinds of map themes, I think this would work. It just doesn't work in a tech setting for me. Would work great with a Gothic setup. Tutorial: 3D Floor & Planes - JagDogger2525 Doom 2 - Single Player - GZDoom - 4.66 KB Reviewed by: Csonicgo This is a tutorial level for a simple 3D floor and a slope. You can walk under and on top of the floor (naturally). No gameplay here, just a small room with a floating platform. It's nothing you haven't seen before. Counterattack - Brett "Mechadon" Harrell Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 8.03 MB - Reviewed by: Ryath Mechadon's style is unmistakable: beautifully-crafted architecture, all the way from the tiny details of a light fixture up to the vaulted archways of a nightmarish cathedral that could house every single denizen of Hell. His skill is unmatched at stringing the sections of a map together in fascinating, overlapping, interwoven paths; and his maps reshape themselves as you play, opening new passages and doors and staircases in a way I've rarely seen. But unlike a lot of other mappers who create these epic, hour-long slogs, Mechadon knows precisely how to signpost and place landmarks so that it's a rare thing to get lost in his maps, at least for more than a minute or so. Counterattack is perfect Mechadon, and takes you on a wonderful journey through a UAC base on Earth to a Hellish gate at the edge of the universe over the course of five massive maps. (Not including two secret maps, a tiny end map you won't see in Eternity or ZDoom, and a placeholder at Map30.) Map01: The first map messes with your expectations by giving you the rocket launcher right away, and a huge portion of the first map consists of blowing battalions of former humans to bits with rockets and ubiquitous explosive barrels. The pistol zombies are a much bigger threat than you might expect, just from their sheer numbers. Oddly, this is the map I got turned around in the most, though I think part of that was just getting comfortable with how progression and layouts work in Mechadon maps. Map02: Mechadon set out to create maps that could be completed any number of different ways, and it's quite clear from here on out. In this one, for instance, you need the red skull key to get to the exit -- but you can retrieve the red skull using either the yellow keycard OR both the red and blue keycards. And if you have all three, you get grab a BFG to use in the last few arena battles. This might be my favorite map in the WAD, though it probably has the worst midi. It's hard to find music suitable for really long maps, and this one is just too repetitive. Map03: The other contender for best map in the bunch. I love the melding of Hell's green marble with green base textures like STARG1 and CEMENT9. Hyper-detailed CEMENT-based architecture is one of my fetishes, and this map satisfies. Things are getting significantly more subverted by Hell's influence, though gameplay-wise Map03 feels a lot like 02 -- just slightly more confusing, which is why it's not quite definitively the best map in Counterattack. Map04: Fire and brimstone Hell meets Doom II's city aesthetic. Map04 is one of the most beautiful maps I've ever played. You're deliberately under-supplied for the opening, which forces you count your bullets and bust out the chainsaw any time you can risk it. This time you're not just key-hunting; you're hunting for ammo and weapons too. Scavenging is great (stressful) fun, but it does make it easy to get in over your head. I had at least one death because I ran into a lock-you-in-the-room style trap against a swarm of demons and revenants with only the chainsaw and shotgun. Not too discouraging, though, since these maps are such open-ended playgrounds, and starting them over just feels like a chance to attack them from another angle. Map05: An entire map of arena battles. Stunning visuals, but I didn't appreciate the gameplay as much as in previous maps. The final boss monster is kind of underwhelming because it poses so little threat; because of how much room there is to move around, this map is actually significantly easier than 04 -- and it's the only map I didn't die in. Counterattack isn't without its flaws. It's a minor nitpick, but Mechadon's use of shadows can be a bit aggressive. Almost everything casts an extreme shadow, even some little ceiling detail twenty feet up that barely protrudes at all. It also gets very predictable when EVERY switch releases enemies. And a couple maps start to drag on by the end, especially 04. The WAD is pure joy, though. Each map is its own self-contained adventure full of not just gorgeous vistas, but a new, charming little detail to find every time you play it. And each playthrough unfolds differently as you discover new and unexpected routes. Mechadon is quickly becoming one of my favorite mappers. By the way, is that a sequel hook I see in the ending text? I sure hope so. Fanta Factory - Hebridean Isle Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 1.56 MB - Reviewed by: leodoom85 One word: ORANGE. That's all for the review, bye... Just kidding. This is Fanta Factory, a tech-base orange-tinted map which is really short but fun. The map starts with really nice orange-tinted ambience and a few monsters (first image) and the added Quake MIDI track which fits nicely. Still easy enough with the encounters by killing zombies, imps and pinkies. Ahead of you is a switch that will change the tone of the map in a sudden way (second image). Music stops, change of tone, music starts. And as a surprise for the outside, more zombies are waiting with a hell knight behind. Next area is the orange arena with more Fanta to drink (third image)... probably, but first, the monsters. After that you clear the first line of hellspawn and enter an arena with several small pillars and some goodies. Inside the arena is a well-hidden secret which some people may figure out and there's a plasma gun. That will help against some monsters. The arena itself has three waves of monsters, one group with low-tier monsters such as zombies, imps and pinkys. The second wave is a mid-tier group with a couple of cacos and revenants. And the last wave is a pair of mancubuses. Oh, I forgot to say that every wave is summoned, some of those pillars will lower very slowly, and for the third wave you won't have any cover at all, which is a great touch and adds more challenge. You can still die in this map if you're not careful though. The detail of the map is quite good, but still I found some vertical misalignments, but that's not too serious. Two things though... that secret sound... haha, coming from OMD and its song, Secret, nice touch. And uh... that image that's revealed at the right when you press the secret switch... I don't know where's from. Overall, it's a nice map. It can fit really fine for a Map01 if it's compiled into a mapset or something. Good gameplay. Thing is, it's so short that the player will feel disappointed at the end. Maybe adding a couple of maps can be useful for more time spent in the map. And enjoy drinking Fanta while reading this review please!!! Quester's Fest - Fonze Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 303.21 KB - Reviewed by: rdwpa Fonze has been an advocate for the rocket launcher as Doom's best weapon for some time now, and his speedmaps over the past year-plus have been a series of love notes to it, exploring a variety of surprisingly uncommon gameplay concepts. Examples include the rocket launcher–pain elemental dynamic, as well as inverted target prioritization -- pinkies are often the biggest threats and archviles can be surprisingly harmless. These maps don't really attempt to be "normal"; it's all rocket-pumping action. In Quester's Fest, as in many of Fonze's speedmaps, the rocket launcher is the only weapon you will be given ammo for. Featuring around 200 monsters spread across two set pieces, it's a very short map. The gameplay will be challenging for most, although those used to 'hardcore' sets such as Sunlust will classify it as somewhat leisurely. Difficulty settings have been provided: HMP is much like UV with extra forgiveness in the second half, but the most important thing you should know is that HNTR is an absolutely mandatory play after you're done on either HMP or UV. I won't spoil the surprise. Just try it. Phrygia - Fonze Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 169.4 KB - Reviewed by: leodoom85 This map was really hard at the starting point... surrounded by spiders, revenants, hell knights, barons and pinkys. I tell you, that part took me ten tries to get right (first image). It's all about learning how to progress through the map, picking up the backpack and not getting damaged much by the damaging floor and the homing projectiles (second image). That specific part is also the key for killing the revenants near you first, then dispatching the big group of revenants, spiders and hell knights in the right is necessary. Oh and be careful for pinkys that are entering the area where you are, or one of the rockets will kill you. After dispatching most of it, killing spiders and pinkys are a must, by rockets or infighting, then get the soulsphere, and when the area is clear, megasphere time. It's worth mentioning that after clearing that area, the map gets easier... not without killing another group of revenants, cacos, and a couple of archies (third image)... and a sneaky pain elemental that comes out of nowhere. Detail in the map was fine, simple but clean. And surprisingly, I liked the music... even if the track sounds like it's from an Egyptian-themed track. Definitely a really hard but fun map; strategies must be used in order to clear it. Emergent - Benjogami Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 2.53 MB - Reviewed by: leodoom85 Emergent is a 4-map wad made by Benjogami and it's already teasing the player at the start with that "Don't Save" message in the save game options. Nice touch there, but you know where that's going. So, here's the detail of the maps. Map01 - There's a quiet start with a teleporter in front of you saying that this will be a nice start (first image) but... oh boy, this is deceptive, as you step into that teleporter and see the new big area (second image). You're already surrounded by hellspawn of the nastiest kind, and the cover can't be of much use here as long as you kill them ASAP. This map starts hard and ends hard and that will be a constant for the next maps, so be prepared at all times. I like that all maps are set in some void instead of being in some common place like Hell or Earth. That gives a clear indication that you're hopeless and alone while fighting whatever comes. The detail for this map is great, and it has some interesting ways of mixing themes... like, you have rocks, urban textures, and tech stuff mixed together. By the way, you need the archvile to get the soulsphere? While some players would have low health already? That's risky, unless that there's another way to get there. In any case, good and hard map. Map02 - Pinky start (third image)... time to punch those bastards with the berserk!!! What a way to start. You have two switches to lower some pillars and walk to the main part of the map. The map itself is interesting because you have the choice of which side of the map to go. You have two major areas in the map. The left area has the red key (fourth image) and the right area has the blue key. Also, in the sectors where the keys are, there's a switch nearby which activates some lifts to the exit (fifth image). Did I mention that there's also two long and narrow pillars that also have the two keys, and if you pick up one key, the other is unreachable? Cool stuff. The gameplay itself was also hard regardless of the amount of monsters. It's completely deceiving, and the player will understand that in a painful way. There's some ammo in those acid pools that you will receive some damage to get... talk about punishment. Also, ammo management is crucial here and in the next maps... fortunately in this map you have the berserk if you want to save some precious ammo. And always be careful of archviles. Overall, it's a nice and hard map that's like the calm before the storm for the next map. Map03 - OK, OK... starting point surrounded by imps, hell knights and revenants... OK. What a chaotic entrance (sixth image) which has some ammo scattered, armor and health to use it wisely because the problems for this map begin now. Red key area (seventh image)... OK, where do I begin?. This section caused me a lot of problems, mainly because there's no teleporters to give the player a choice of keeping the fight. Instead, you'll suffer a slow and painful death. This is annoying. To make things a bit worse, there's four cages which can spawn random monsters... if one of them is not a pain elemental then you'll have a hard time, and also you have to worry about a couple of archies. Fortunately, this is the only problem that I have with this mapset, because the next section is more forgiving than the red key area. The yellow key area (eighth image) is easier than the last one; at least you have a chance of surviving the fight if you stay in the lower areas. The fight is still chaotic of course, but it's manageable. Overall, I have mixed feelings with this map to be honest. It started good but... the red key area is the downside of this map. At least the yellow key area raises the fun a bit and that's appreciated. The player must be alert at all times in order to survive this nasty map. Map04 - Adorable start (ninth image) but this map is anything but adorable. The map is composed of three main areas that are divided to the left, center and right areas. The left area (tenth image) was the hardest part of the map because it has two mini-areas to deal with. By the way, there are four switches scattered in the map. Press one of them and more monsters will come out. In any case, you have to deal with more hellspawn while you press those switches. I noticed that cacos are more present than the other three maps, same for the revenants and hell knights and of course... archviles. And I'm also surprised that 1 or 2 pain elementals are there... I guess that the mapper was generous on this one. OH... that soulsphere is a must to pick up. Right area (eleventh image) was far easier than I thought. Lots of rockets and the place itself helps tremendously against the monsters because you can run from there and have a lot of cover. Those bastards don't have a chance this time, and of course, archies are the priority to take out first. Going to the center area (twelfth image), you'll find cacos that will surround you at any second, plus some archies at the already mentioned left area, and worst of all, a cyberdemon acts like a turret, but this is a perfect chance to provoke some infighting (and I had the help of a spider to kill him while the cyberdemon had eyes on me, which saved me some time and ammo). Also, you'll find some pillars that must be lowered in order to get to the exit. You have to be careful on the exit because there's still a few monsters that can spawn, and you must kill them before getting damaged, and it's not fun if you die right before the exit, you know. The detail and architecture of the map is good, especially the exit. Pretty simple layout but effective and does a good job by keeping you at bay. Overall, it was a fun map and yes, still having hard difficulty and the rocket launcher will be the preferred choice. This wad provides a real challenge that can be a good or bad thing depending on the player's skill. It's up to you to play this set but in my opinion, you should play it and give it a try. The /newstuff Chronicles is a usually-weekly roundup of new items uploaded to the /idgames archive, and it is written entirely by community members like you. If you wish to contribute, the /newstuff Review Center is the place to do so. Register on the Doomworld Forums first if you don't already have an account, because you need one to submit reviews. Special thanks goes to the nearly 300 users who have submitted reviews over the past several years.
  4. Quantum Strike - Spectre01 (rileymartin) Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 1.97 MB - Reviewed by: Csonicgo Oh dear. I had written a scathing review of this, but the author was nice enough to message me personally and ask me to give him my honest opinion on the map. So instead of editing the review, I scrapped it entirely and started over. So, here goes. Quantum Strike is a set of three slaughtermaps with something most slaughtermaps don't have: sane difficulty settings. However, because I was dumb and played on UV, I kept getting my ass kicked. After many, many tries to get out of the first set of rooms in MAP01, I was about ready to give up, but then I read the text file (hurrrr), and discovered that UV was supposed to be intentionally terrible. Well, that explains everything. So, gameplay is exactly what people expect from a slaughtermap - a relentless barrage of hate and death. But there is something in each encounter that I haven't seen in many slaughtermaps - ways to avoid attacks. Let me demonstrate what I mean. MAP01 starts in a hallway with an arch-vile behind you. At the start. AT THE START. Naturally, you want to run, but you're trapped behind a door that blazes open to reveal - you guessed it - hitscanners. To the left of you is a pole made of blue skull key door textures. Guess who's going pole dancing? What ensues is a lot of failed attempts to beat each "wave" of enemies, using either the environment to dodge, or your weapons to stun. Every few feet you walk, you just might get owned. Arena-style fights are here, are way overdone, and quite honestly stress me out. My biggest issue with the Arena fights in these maps is that a lot of them use teleporting monsters, so you never, ever, ever know what to expect. Think of a minefield, but the mines move. Not to mention a section where cacodemons pour out of an area for what seems like hours. If you like slaughtermaps you'll enjoy this I guess, but there is something that ruins this map for me and it's not the game play, it's... well, let's take a look! Ow, my eyes. It's a shame that this screenshot is a static image, because in reality, everything - EVERY texture is scrolling. It's garish, it's irritating, nauseating, and the ultimate in Gothic99/KDIZD-esque overkill. Boy, I never thought I'd say that in 2017. The other way I can describe the level of detail is a Victorian-era dollhouse, where the house is so detailed that looks like someone figured out how to shrink a real house. This doesn't just affect the visuals; it affects movement. Every little detail sticking out from the walls into the player's space makes using projectile weapons that much more dangerous. But hey, at least the mapper didn't booby-trap stimpacks like DV0! A new monster, the afrit, has been added that replaces the Commander Keen - which has wayyy too much health. The attack is also the most evil thing I've ever encountered, combining mancubus and revenant attacks. WTF AVOID. Here are my recommendations for the mapper: * Remove as much of the crazy detail as possible. Good lord, there's no reason for computer textures to scroll. * Implement better lighting in the fullbright areas. Why so many lamp decorations? * Take into the account the few moments of immobility after teleporting. There are many many times that I died simply because I couldn't move. This is a -complevel 9 wad, but infinite height is expected to be disabled, and freelook enabled. This could explain a lot of my frustration, because I play with mostly vanilla settings, and never thought to check that stuff. And yet... I couldn't stop playing the thing! This map sucks, 5/5. If you think you can take the sensory overload, give it a shot! Tutorial: 9-Level Spiral (3D Stairs) - JagDogger2525 Doom 2 - Single Player - GZDoom - 32.28 KB Reviewed by: Csonicgo This is an interesting tutorial level demonstrating a spiral staircase. There are a few monsters thrown in as a demonstration of what to expect with 3D floors, and a switch at the top. Do NOT expect software mode to work, unless you are using the experimental sofware poly renderer. What I found interesting about this map is how odd it feels to climb the stairs. 3D floor use like this is very rare, and I think an elevator would have done just as good of a job. But for some kinds of map themes, I think this would work. It just doesn't work in a tech setting for me. Would work great with a Gothic setup. Tutorial: 3D Floor & Planes - JagDogger2525 Doom 2 - Single Player - GZDoom - 4.66 KB Reviewed by: Csonicgo This is a tutorial level for a simple 3D floor and a slope. You can walk under and on top of the floor (naturally). No gameplay here, just a small room with a floating platform. It's nothing you haven't seen before. Counterattack - Brett "Mechadon" Harrell Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 8.03 MB - Reviewed by: Ryath Mechadon's style is unmistakable: beautifully-crafted architecture, all the way from the tiny details of a light fixture up to the vaulted archways of a nightmarish cathedral that could house every single denizen of Hell. His skill is unmatched at stringing the sections of a map together in fascinating, overlapping, interwoven paths; and his maps reshape themselves as you play, opening new passages and doors and staircases in a way I've rarely seen. But unlike a lot of other mappers who create these epic, hour-long slogs, Mechadon knows precisely how to signpost and place landmarks so that it's a rare thing to get lost in his maps, at least for more than a minute or so. Counterattack is perfect Mechadon, and takes you on a wonderful journey through a UAC base on Earth to a Hellish gate at the edge of the universe over the course of five massive maps. (Not including two secret maps, a tiny end map you won't see in Eternity or ZDoom, and a placeholder at Map30.) Map01: The first map messes with your expectations by giving you the rocket launcher right away, and a huge portion of the first map consists of blowing battalions of former humans to bits with rockets and ubiquitous explosive barrels. The pistol zombies are a much bigger threat than you might expect, just from their sheer numbers. Oddly, this is the map I got turned around in the most, though I think part of that was just getting comfortable with how progression and layouts work in Mechadon maps. Map02: Mechadon set out to create maps that could be completed any number of different ways, and it's quite clear from here on out. In this one, for instance, you need the red skull key to get to the exit -- but you can retrieve the red skull using either the yellow keycard OR both the red and blue keycards. And if you have all three, you get grab a BFG to use in the last few arena battles. This might be my favorite map in the WAD, though it probably has the worst midi. It's hard to find music suitable for really long maps, and this one is just too repetitive. Map03: The other contender for best map in the bunch. I love the melding of Hell's green marble with green base textures like STARG1 and CEMENT9. Hyper-detailed CEMENT-based architecture is one of my fetishes, and this map satisfies. Things are getting significantly more subverted by Hell's influence, though gameplay-wise Map03 feels a lot like 02 -- just slightly more confusing, which is why it's not quite definitively the best map in Counterattack. Map04: Fire and brimstone Hell meets Doom II's city aesthetic. Map04 is one of the most beautiful maps I've ever played. You're deliberately under-supplied for the opening, which forces you count your bullets and bust out the chainsaw any time you can risk it. This time you're not just key-hunting; you're hunting for ammo and weapons too. Scavenging is great (stressful) fun, but it does make it easy to get in over your head. I had at least one death because I ran into a lock-you-in-the-room style trap against a swarm of demons and revenants with only the chainsaw and shotgun. Not too discouraging, though, since these maps are such open-ended playgrounds, and starting them over just feels like a chance to attack them from another angle. Map05: An entire map of arena battles. Stunning visuals, but I didn't appreciate the gameplay as much as in previous maps. The final boss monster is kind of underwhelming because it poses so little threat; because of how much room there is to move around, this map is actually significantly easier than 04 -- and it's the only map I didn't die in. Counterattack isn't without its flaws. It's a minor nitpick, but Mechadon's use of shadows can be a bit aggressive. Almost everything casts an extreme shadow, even some little ceiling detail twenty feet up that barely protrudes at all. It also gets very predictable when EVERY switch releases enemies. And a couple maps start to drag on by the end, especially 04. The WAD is pure joy, though. Each map is its own self-contained adventure full of not just gorgeous vistas, but a new, charming little detail to find every time you play it. And each playthrough unfolds differently as you discover new and unexpected routes. Mechadon is quickly becoming one of my favorite mappers. By the way, is that a sequel hook I see in the ending text? I sure hope so. Fanta Factory - Hebridean Isle Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 1.56 MB - Reviewed by: leodoom85 One word: ORANGE. That's all for the review, bye... Just kidding. This is Fanta Factory, a tech-base orange-tinted map which is really short but fun. The map starts with really nice orange-tinted ambience and a few monsters (first image) and the added Quake MIDI track which fits nicely. Still easy enough with the encounters by killing zombies, imps and pinkies. Ahead of you is a switch that will change the tone of the map in a sudden way (second image). Music stops, change of tone, music starts. And as a surprise for the outside, more zombies are waiting with a hell knight behind. Next area is the orange arena with more Fanta to drink (third image)... probably, but first, the monsters. After that you clear the first line of hellspawn and enter an arena with several small pillars and some goodies. Inside the arena is a well-hidden secret which some people may figure out and there's a plasma gun. That will help against some monsters. The arena itself has three waves of monsters, one group with low-tier monsters such as zombies, imps and pinkys. The second wave is a mid-tier group with a couple of cacos and revenants. And the last wave is a pair of mancubuses. Oh, I forgot to say that every wave is summoned, some of those pillars will lower very slowly, and for the third wave you won't have any cover at all, which is a great touch and adds more challenge. You can still die in this map if you're not careful though. The detail of the map is quite good, but still I found some vertical misalignments, but that's not too serious. Two things though... that secret sound... haha, coming from OMD and its song, Secret, nice touch. And uh... that image that's revealed at the right when you press the secret switch... I don't know where's from. Overall, it's a nice map. It can fit really fine for a Map01 if it's compiled into a mapset or something. Good gameplay. Thing is, it's so short that the player will feel disappointed at the end. Maybe adding a couple of maps can be useful for more time spent in the map. And enjoy drinking Fanta while reading this review please!!! Quester's Fest - Fonze Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 303.21 KB - Reviewed by: rdwpa Fonze has been an advocate for the rocket launcher as Doom's best weapon for some time now, and his speedmaps over the past year-plus have been a series of love notes to it, exploring a variety of surprisingly uncommon gameplay concepts. Examples include the rocket launcher–pain elemental dynamic, as well as inverted target prioritization -- pinkies are often the biggest threats and archviles can be surprisingly harmless. These maps don't really attempt to be "normal"; it's all rocket-pumping action. In Quester's Fest, as in many of Fonze's speedmaps, the rocket launcher is the only weapon you will be given ammo for. Featuring around 200 monsters spread across two set pieces, it's a very short map. The gameplay will be challenging for most, although those used to 'hardcore' sets such as Sunlust will classify it as somewhat leisurely. Difficulty settings have been provided: HMP is much like UV with extra forgiveness in the second half, but the most important thing you should know is that HNTR is an absolutely mandatory play after you're done on either HMP or UV. I won't spoil the surprise. Just try it. Phrygia - Fonze Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 169.4 KB - Reviewed by: leodoom85 This map was really hard at the starting point... surrounded by spiders, revenants, hell knights, barons and pinkys. I tell you, that part took me ten tries to get right (first image). It's all about learning how to progress through the map, picking up the backpack and not getting damaged much by the damaging floor and the homing projectiles (second image). That specific part is also the key for killing the revenants near you first, then dispatching the big group of revenants, spiders and hell knights in the right is necessary. Oh and be careful for pinkys that are entering the area where you are, or one of the rockets will kill you. After dispatching most of it, killing spiders and pinkys are a must, by rockets or infighting, then get the soulsphere, and when the area is clear, megasphere time. It's worth mentioning that after clearing that area, the map gets easier... not without killing another group of revenants, cacos, and a couple of archies (third image)... and a sneaky pain elemental that comes out of nowhere. Detail in the map was fine, simple but clean. And surprisingly, I liked the music... even if the track sounds like it's from an Egyptian-themed track. Definitely a really hard but fun map; strategies must be used in order to clear it. Emergent - Benjogami Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 2.53 MB - Reviewed by: leodoom85 Emergent is a 4-map wad made by Benjogami and it's already teasing the player at the start with that "Don't Save" message in the save game options. Nice touch there, but you know where that's going. So, here's the detail of the maps. Map01 - There's a quiet start with a teleporter in front of you saying that this will be a nice start (first image) but... oh boy, this is deceptive, as you step into that teleporter and see the new big area (second image). You're already surrounded by hellspawn of the nastiest kind, and the cover can't be of much use here as long as you kill them ASAP. This map starts hard and ends hard and that will be a constant for the next maps, so be prepared at all times. I like that all maps are set in some void instead of being in some common place like Hell or Earth. That gives a clear indication that you're hopeless and alone while fighting whatever comes. The detail for this map is great, and it has some interesting ways of mixing themes... like, you have rocks, urban textures, and tech stuff mixed together. By the way, you need the archvile to get the soulsphere? While some players would have low health already? That's risky, unless that there's another way to get there. In any case, good and hard map. Map02 - Pinky start (third image)... time to punch those bastards with the berserk!!! What a way to start. You have two switches to lower some pillars and walk to the main part of the map. The map itself is interesting because you have the choice of which side of the map to go. You have two major areas in the map. The left area has the red key (fourth image) and the right area has the blue key. Also, in the sectors where the keys are, there's a switch nearby which activates some lifts to the exit (fifth image). Did I mention that there's also two long and narrow pillars that also have the two keys, and if you pick up one key, the other is unreachable? Cool stuff. The gameplay itself was also hard regardless of the amount of monsters. It's completely deceiving, and the player will understand that in a painful way. There's some ammo in those acid pools that you will receive some damage to get... talk about punishment. Also, ammo management is crucial here and in the next maps... fortunately in this map you have the berserk if you want to save some precious ammo. And always be careful of archviles. Overall, it's a nice and hard map that's like the calm before the storm for the next map. Map03 - OK, OK... starting point surrounded by imps, hell knights and revenants... OK. What a chaotic entrance (sixth image) which has some ammo scattered, armor and health to use it wisely because the problems for this map begin now. Red key area (seventh image)... OK, where do I begin?. This section caused me a lot of problems, mainly because there's no teleporters to give the player a choice of keeping the fight. Instead, you'll suffer a slow and painful death. This is annoying. To make things a bit worse, there's four cages which can spawn random monsters... if one of them is not a pain elemental then you'll have a hard time, and also you have to worry about a couple of archies. Fortunately, this is the only problem that I have with this mapset, because the next section is more forgiving than the red key area. The yellow key area (eighth image) is easier than the last one; at least you have a chance of surviving the fight if you stay in the lower areas. The fight is still chaotic of course, but it's manageable. Overall, I have mixed feelings with this map to be honest. It started good but... the red key area is the downside of this map. At least the yellow key area raises the fun a bit and that's appreciated. The player must be alert at all times in order to survive this nasty map. Map04 - Adorable start (ninth image) but this map is anything but adorable. The map is composed of three main areas that are divided to the left, center and right areas. The left area (tenth image) was the hardest part of the map because it has two mini-areas to deal with. By the way, there are four switches scattered in the map. Press one of them and more monsters will come out. In any case, you have to deal with more hellspawn while you press those switches. I noticed that cacos are more present than the other three maps, same for the revenants and hell knights and of course... archviles. And I'm also surprised that 1 or 2 pain elementals are there... I guess that the mapper was generous on this one. OH... that soulsphere is a must to pick up. Right area (eleventh image) was far easier than I thought. Lots of rockets and the place itself helps tremendously against the monsters because you can run from there and have a lot of cover. Those bastards don't have a chance this time, and of course, archies are the priority to take out first. Going to the center area (twelfth image), you'll find cacos that will surround you at any second, plus some archies at the already mentioned left area, and worst of all, a cyberdemon acts like a turret, but this is a perfect chance to provoke some infighting (and I had the help of a spider to kill him while the cyberdemon had eyes on me, which saved me some time and ammo). Also, you'll find some pillars that must be lowered in order to get to the exit. You have to be careful on the exit because there's still a few monsters that can spawn, and you must kill them before getting damaged, and it's not fun if you die right before the exit, you know. The detail and architecture of the map is good, especially the exit. Pretty simple layout but effective and does a good job by keeping you at bay. Overall, it was a fun map and yes, still having hard difficulty and the rocket launcher will be the preferred choice. This wad provides a real challenge that can be a good or bad thing depending on the player's skill. It's up to you to play this set but in my opinion, you should play it and give it a try. The /newstuff Chronicles is a usually-weekly roundup of new items uploaded to the /idgames archive, and it is written entirely by community members like you. If you wish to contribute, the /newstuff Review Center is the place to do so. Register on the Doomworld Forums first if you don't already have an account, because you need one to submit reviews. Special thanks goes to the nearly 300 users who have submitted reviews over the past several years. View full news article
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  6. Pizza Steve - Fernando Sanchez M. Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 2.9 MB - Reviewed by: rdwpa Some slaughtermaps are at the zenith of cerebral play in Doom, forcing you to puzzle out specific strategies and execute them with precision in order to prevail. Some slaughtermaps give you powerful weapons and lots of megaspheres and offer you mindless no-strings-attached fun as you spam your way through hordes. There are plenty of good slaughtersets out there in either idiom. Pizza Steve is not one of them. Playing through this set -- with a willingness to IDCLEV or IDCLIP when faced with tedium, such as chaingunning door-with-health cyberdemons in maps with hardly any cell ammo -- I could feel the outlines of a fun monster spammy offering. I really could feel it. But for every enjoyable fight or two, you have to endure a spell of head-scratching tedium. Hallways lined with cyberdemons you don't have the ammo for. Mixed hordes that clog up at fast doors, forcing you to wait, rapidly opening and closing the door, until they infight themselves to death. Thresholds packed with revenants that exist solely to keep you from blitzing through the map, forcing you instead to pluck off every single cyber turret. Pizza Steve has a terrible habit of being quite stingy with the actual good weapons, especially in the earlier stages of maps. This often ruins what would have been decently fun spamfests in any other set. Instead, threshold camping and general slogginess become the order of the day. What I find fascinating about this set is that it clearly took some effort to make -- there are 32 maps, some of them quite expansive, none too pretty or highly detailed but most more sophisticated than monotextured Startan rooms. Yet as was mentioned during a discussion of the set, it feels like Pizza Steve was made "in a vacuum", devoid of any external feedback, devoid of anything even resembling thorough testing. It's as if the author hunkered down for a year and just made maps, without any thought of anyone but him playing them. More power to him, but the results are self-explanatory. If you are willing to hunt around with IDCLEV, you'll find some playable maps -- even a broken map design algorithm is right twice a year, or however the expression goes. The set also has merit as a sandbox for overpowered weapons mods and similar gameplay supplements. But overall, it's more bad than good, and unless poor design holds an intrinsic appeal for you, it's worth skipping in favor of basically any other set of slaughtermaps. UAC Doom - Part 2 - Laus Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 428.99 KB - Reviewed by: rdwpa Despite requiring ZDoom, Laus's second map looks and plays like something straight out of 1996. The indoor areas are a network of humbly sized rooms and cramped corridors, each made primarily of a single texture, with occasional wild theme shifts from one room to another. The gameplay mostly involves shooting stuff in front of you. Technical design is far from a strong point; texture misalignments are common, and in one area walls bleed into the sky when viewed from certain angles. So if you are looking for polish or modern gameplay, this is not for you. If you want a map unencumbered by modern tropes, reminiscent of a time before communal notions of what is considered "good design", or if you like shooting stuff with the single shotgun -- or if your name is Memfis -- this is for you. I played this map twice. Once right before bedtime (the gameplay accelerated the process), once the next day for the review. The one thing I wish I hadn't uncovered is the last secret: a room of dated memes displayed in large custom textures, a deliberate eyesore, unfunny, Terry-like in vibe. It's not malicious but it's pretty dumb. A shame, because otherwise the secrets would be a small selling point of the map. (And still are... if you are twelve.) Note: Jumping can break progression. The silly secret aside, this is a classic map that just happens to need ZDoom because ZDoom was what the author was familiar with. Saturnine Chapel (MNENMA 0) - dobu gabu maru Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 1.79 MB - Reviewed by: rdwpa Dobu Gabu Maru is one of the most uncompromising mappers of our time. He's an artiste-slash-dominatrix -- think Ribbiks, or a much crueler Mouldy -- whose primary goal is to raise your death count astronomically high, but who is also kind enough to treat you to awe-inspiring sights as it soars. Saturnine Chapel is an aesthetic marvel. The opening shot depicts the chapel looming in the distance in a wild realm of twisted metal and torrential slimefall, and from here onwards, everywhere you look you'll be privy to painstakingly assembled lighting effects and Doom 2's stock textures used in creative, surprising ways. People often talk about "sense of place", but Dobu's maps go many steps further, bringing along their own sense of mythology. As the lore goes, the Saturnine Chapel itself was made out of books. Dobu himself explains that "the chapel wasn't built to be used, it was built because the vile books had willed it to be, completely independent of any observer, curator, or architect". Pretty as it is, Saturnine Chapel is a vicious mistress, a tough map even by Dobu's standards of cruelty. Movement space is at a serious premium, and resources are balanced precariously, leaving you next to no room for waste or substandard usage. Fights on "Hard" (the UV equivalent) openly embrace RNG -- in a few, bad luck with monster movement will result in a quick death with anything short of TAS-quality play. But in line with a growing trend (see Stardate 20x7, for example), "Hard" is not the intended difficulty. According to the text file, "Normal" (the HMP equivalent) is. I'd venture that roughly 99.5% of players would enjoy this most on either "Easy" (skill 2) or "Normal" (skill 3) and should actually listen to the text file. For most players on skill 4, savescumming will run into a wall. "Normal" is already substantially tougher than most contemporary maps on UV, enough to satisfy all but the most intense spells of bloodlust. The Red Line - Didy Doom 2 - Single Player - Limit Removing - 4.07 MB - Reviewed by: Csonicgo Finding mappers who take advantage of the Doom engine to make stunning abstract visuals, while not going overboard, is pretty much impossible. Then Didy came along and released Bauhaus. Thankfully, Didy is not a one hit wonder, and has released The Red Line: another set of maps that are just as much fun to look at as they are to play. Each map is focused around a particular weapon or gimmick of the Doom engine. Not as involved as Cyber Dreams, The Red Line focuses on mastery of each Doom weapon, provoking infighting, corralling monsters, and then using the environment to kill them. For example, MAP01 (called The Crusher for obvious reasons) requires the player to lure monsters into crushers - yes! It's not encouraged, it's required! Upon starting this map, I realized quickly how rusty I was with regards to the melee weapons. The Red Line demands the player to be proficient with all weapons, in all situations. Remember chaingun sniping, silent BFG tricks, and monster pain chances? If you don't, you're going to have a tough time here. As the maps progress, you are to use stronger weapons, and the difficulty keeps pace. I must admit I couldn't finish on UV. You must fight to get the weapon the map is named after - usually. But damn, these maps are gorgeous. It's as if Didy himself built these structures manually, brick by brick, panel by panel. I've missed seeing detail like this, and I hope it makes a comeback, without the Christmas and the light flares. If you are playing this on a port that uses vanilla code, or a hacked vanilla executable, I'm sorry to say that you will start to "stick" to some walls, and a few hallways straddle the blockmap lines so your shots will go right through some of the monsters. This is unfortunate, but due to that ever-so-weird artifact of having a lot of detail in a small space, one of the things that doomed some of Greenwar 2 to ZDoom 2.x-based ports only, I cannot recommend playing this in anything but a relatively recent (G)ZDoom. But please do play it, just don't expect weapon mods to play well with it. CoolMapForContext - Bonfac Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 169.04 KB - Reviewed by: MysteriousHaruko "CoolMapForContext" is the second wad by Bonfac, and this map was meant for the 2016 Vinesauce mapping contest. I played it in GZDoom on medium skill. Gameplay was simple most of the time. Monster count is minimal in both maps and they're not challenging, except in the last area of Map02 due to a cyberdemon and some barons of hell, but even this becomes easy with some clever infighting, an invulnerability sphere which you can pick up at any moment, and all the ammo at your disposal. In map01, a large portion of map is skippable. In map02, the first invulnerability sphere was worthless and forced, because the monsters weren't as threatening as they would be in larger groups. I disliked the idea of player blocking lines at the edges; I believe that players should fall free, even if the fall will telefrag them to shreds or have teleporters around. Instant walk only-once linedefs were annoying too, for example in map02. This "instant only-once action floor goes up walkable linedef action with blue key" can lock the progress for the player, forcing you to do the noclip cheat. Most of the demon teleports were made through the easiest kind of scripts. Also, the autosave function was very unnecessary and pointless. If I talk about important items like health, ammo, armor bonuses, he didn't place them much, and in some critical places I ran out of ammo and I couldn't heal myself after a fight. The visual side of this mapset. First of all, I liked the foggy outside areas; they give an interesting and mysterious vibe, but the fog effect in inside areas wasn't so good. I noticed lots of misalignments and some unchanged textures provided automatically by Doom Builder 2. Sky viewpoints were way too close to windows and to the player's viewpoint. I think putting a new sky (probably one that blends well with the fog outside) and the linedef action "Line_Horizon" with the same fog effect would be more efficient. Sky viewpoints are mostly visible with the first invulnerability sphere effect at the outside area in map02. The main wad layout is linear, nothing special. Music in both maps are default, in my opinion, wad would be more interesting with custom music. This wad is weaker than "MyFirstUpload", mainly because this mapset feels rushed and untested before this was submitted for that contest and to /idgames. Puzzle of Doom - CrazyDoomguy Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 71.33 KB - Reviewed by: rdwpa The titular puzzles in Puzzle of Doom aren't switch hunts, timed platforming bits, searches for the odd book out in the library, or anything most people would associate with puzzles in Doom. What they are is a set of combat vignettes, the common link being that conventional fighting -- shooting stuff, dodging, etc. -- won't even come close to working on its own. Blockades, such as rows of hell knights in corridors and cyberdemons planted in front of switches, are ubiquitous. You won't have the firepower to clear them on your own. This is where the puzzle part comes in. In every map, the challenge is essentially "How can you use the monsters and the map geometry to create 'events' that remove the blockades?" You're tasked to think outside the box and exploit monster behavior in unconventional ways. It's a cool concept, one I'm very amenable to, but ultimately I felt the set was a mixed bag -- a couple of clever and fun maps alongside a few tedious ones. A recurring pattern is that a solution is inventive but executing it involves lots of unfulfilling repetition, often leaving one to think, "Okay, I get it already". It's worth at least a brief look if the idea appeals to you, but a willingness to IDCLEV would help. Needless to say, if you're looking for conventional Doom gameplay, this set isn't for you. It's not much of a looker either. And be warned if you want to try these maps with saves: in every map it's possible for an early "wrong move" to render the level unwinnable. Mark your progress if you feel compelled to do so but be willing to reset entirely if you reach an impasse. These maps are quite short, after all. Maihama - Memfis Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 156.54 KB - Reviewed by: Not Jabba Maihama is a smallish map with sort of an abstract nukage base theme. The map is laid out as a series of islands with a city built into them, and the nukage sea is very much a part of the gameplay, as you have to manage radsuits and dive down into it on occasion to look for a switch or key. The whole thing is wide open and nonlinear in the tradition of Sandy Petersen's "Downtown." The map starts out with a fairly tough hot start, as you're immediately surrounded by various zombie hitscanners with nothing but a pistol. This sets the tone for the whole map: the goal is to find the weapons first and fight the enemies second, and there are plenty of Doom's deadlier foes around to distract you and trip you up. Ammo is tight, not in the sense that there's not enough of it, but rather because you have to keep moving and hunting around to get what you need to continue fighting, and there's only enough of it to kill all enemies once you've succeeded in finding all the weapons. Since it's a resource management map, it's most challenging toward the beginning, and gradually gets easier as you gain a foothold and build up your arsenal. Like many Memfis maps, Maihama doesn't take itself too seriously and is quick to play. It's a good choice for anyone looking for combat puzzles with a relatively low enemy count. Refrigerator Magnets Volume 1 - theJF Doom 2 - Single Player - Limit Removing - 1.53 MB - Reviewed by: Csonicgo Anyone growing up in the US remembers any neighbor's refrigerator with tons of novelty souvenir magnets, mentioning places you didn't get to go to (but hey, at least you got a t-shirt). What does that have to do with Doom maps? theJF decided to use fridge magnets as inspiration for maps. Proof that we can find inspiration anywhere, right? Wellllll, actually, there's not much inspiration from the magnets; only the names of the maps share any relation. But that doesn't mean the maps aren't fun. Every map is "small", with handfuls of monsters, yet the positioning of said monsters always brings a small scare (the suckers are hiding everywhere). Be prepared to be spooked quite a bit. theJF's use of verticality means a lot of monsters can see you only if you're quite a ways into an area, and the clever use of blocking lines keep those surprises from being triggered too soon. That's a trick I hadn't seen since B.P.R.D. made his Community Chest map back in the day. My only complaint is that the texturing isn't consistent. Large, tall areas with little detail to break up the monotony is still forgivable though considering I'm too busy being paranoid of a cacodemon sneaking up from behind and biting my face. Lighting could also be improved a bit... I'm looking forward to more from this mapper. With some work, maps like these could steal the show in a megawad somewhere. Water Spirit - Manbou(burabojunior) Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 7.06 MB - Reviewed by: Not Jabba Manbou/burabojunior made a splash (no pun intended) last year as the most prolific contributor to the Cacoward-winning Japanese Community Project. Anyone who's been looking forward to seeing more of what this subset of the community has to offer will certainly be pleased with Water Spirit, which offers plenty more of Manbou's creative and playful approach to level design. The three levels of Water Spirit are set around a blue-themed stone temple megastructure with lots of pretty falling water, blue laser barriers, and those great dragon stained glass panels from Quake that are in the CC4 texture pack, many of which hang magically suspended in midair. In fact, the whole mapset has a distinct CC4 flavor to it, which isn't surprising given that it was the texture pack used for JPCP, but the setting still feels fresh, unique, and visually stunning. Water Spirit isn't just about huge structures with lots of detail, though -- because, let's face it, we've all seen plenty of those by now. One of the things that's really cool about this wad is the unseen presence of the spirit alluded to in the title, which never actually shows itself but still somehow feels like a real character that's part of the narrative. In map 01, there are long trails of health bonuses that guide you along to various weapons and powerups, but also have a tendency to draw you headlong into dangerous situations. Manbou's trademark floating spirals of thin blue glowy bars also seem to be connected with the spirit, often rising up out of nowhere as though granting some kind of blessing to the player (not that they actually do anything for you, but the effect is cool as hell). There's even one spot where you step into the middle of them and are propelled straight up into the air to grab the key you need. The water spirit is clearly benevolent, but maybe also mischievous, which adds a fun element. Maps 02 and 03 have high monster counts and tend to be slaughtery, but you have a ton of space to move around in, which really helps the battles to feel like manageable challenges. The big fights can sometimes feel a little bit repetitive -- Manbou seems to like using hordes of small monsters coming through several teleporters at once (which I think are fun for the most part, since you have powerful weaponry to shred them with), and both map 02 and map 03 end with the sudden release of a large number of Arch-Viles into the large open spaces of the temple. But since there are only three maps, and they play pretty quickly despite the high monster counts, I feel like it's OK that there are some combat motifs. My favorite battle is the seemingly endless flood of Imps and Demons released out of a gateway at the climax of map 02, as they seem easy at first but quickly threaten to overrun the entire temple if you don't control them effectively. It's almost like a tower defense game with the player as a solitary mobile tower. That map is also really fun to move around in, and the huge amount of height variation not only makes for some impressive views but also gives you some interesting ways to tackle the combat. Overall, Water Spirit is exactly what all of us new Manbou fans were looking for -- a natural continuation of some of the best ideas from the author's JPCP maps, but with a self-contained story and a format that allowed Manbou to explore a single theme in much greater detail. Highly recommended. The /newstuff Chronicles is a usually-weekly roundup of new items uploaded to the /idgames archive, and it is written entirely by community members like you. If you wish to contribute, the /newstuff Review Center is the place to do so. Register on the Doomworld Forums first if you don't already have an account, because you need one to submit reviews. Special thanks goes to the nearly 300 users who have submitted reviews over the past several years.
  7. Pizza Steve - Fernando Sanchez M. Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 2.9 MB - Reviewed by: rdwpa Some slaughtermaps are at the zenith of cerebral play in Doom, forcing you to puzzle out specific strategies and execute them with precision in order to prevail. Some slaughtermaps give you powerful weapons and lots of megaspheres and offer you mindless no-strings-attached fun as you spam your way through hordes. There are plenty of good slaughtersets out there in either idiom. Pizza Steve is not one of them. Playing through this set -- with a willingness to IDCLEV or IDCLIP when faced with tedium, such as chaingunning door-with-health cyberdemons in maps with hardly any cell ammo -- I could feel the outlines of a fun monster spammy offering. I really could feel it. But for every enjoyable fight or two, you have to endure a spell of head-scratching tedium. Hallways lined with cyberdemons you don't have the ammo for. Mixed hordes that clog up at fast doors, forcing you to wait, rapidly opening and closing the door, until they infight themselves to death. Thresholds packed with revenants that exist solely to keep you from blitzing through the map, forcing you instead to pluck off every single cyber turret. Pizza Steve has a terrible habit of being quite stingy with the actual good weapons, especially in the earlier stages of maps. This often ruins what would have been decently fun spamfests in any other set. Instead, threshold camping and general slogginess become the order of the day. What I find fascinating about this set is that it clearly took some effort to make -- there are 32 maps, some of them quite expansive, none too pretty or highly detailed but most more sophisticated than monotextured Startan rooms. Yet as was mentioned during a discussion of the set, it feels like Pizza Steve was made "in a vacuum", devoid of any external feedback, devoid of anything even resembling thorough testing. It's as if the author hunkered down for a year and just made maps, without any thought of anyone but him playing them. More power to him, but the results are self-explanatory. If you are willing to hunt around with IDCLEV, you'll find some playable maps -- even a broken map design algorithm is right twice a year, or however the expression goes. The set also has merit as a sandbox for overpowered weapons mods and similar gameplay supplements. But overall, it's more bad than good, and unless poor design holds an intrinsic appeal for you, it's worth skipping in favor of basically any other set of slaughtermaps. UAC Doom - Part 2 - Laus Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 428.99 KB - Reviewed by: rdwpa Despite requiring ZDoom, Laus's second map looks and plays like something straight out of 1996. The indoor areas are a network of humbly sized rooms and cramped corridors, each made primarily of a single texture, with occasional wild theme shifts from one room to another. The gameplay mostly involves shooting stuff in front of you. Technical design is far from a strong point; texture misalignments are common, and in one area walls bleed into the sky when viewed from certain angles. So if you are looking for polish or modern gameplay, this is not for you. If you want a map unencumbered by modern tropes, reminiscent of a time before communal notions of what is considered "good design", or if you like shooting stuff with the single shotgun -- or if your name is Memfis -- this is for you. I played this map twice. Once right before bedtime (the gameplay accelerated the process), once the next day for the review. The one thing I wish I hadn't uncovered is the last secret: a room of dated memes displayed in large custom textures, a deliberate eyesore, unfunny, Terry-like in vibe. It's not malicious but it's pretty dumb. A shame, because otherwise the secrets would be a small selling point of the map. (And still are... if you are twelve.) Note: Jumping can break progression. The silly secret aside, this is a classic map that just happens to need ZDoom because ZDoom was what the author was familiar with. Saturnine Chapel (MNENMA 0) - dobu gabu maru Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 1.79 MB - Reviewed by: rdwpa Dobu Gabu Maru is one of the most uncompromising mappers of our time. He's an artiste-slash-dominatrix -- think Ribbiks, or a much crueler Mouldy -- whose primary goal is to raise your death count astronomically high, but who is also kind enough to treat you to awe-inspiring sights as it soars. Saturnine Chapel is an aesthetic marvel. The opening shot depicts the chapel looming in the distance in a wild realm of twisted metal and torrential slimefall, and from here onwards, everywhere you look you'll be privy to painstakingly assembled lighting effects and Doom 2's stock textures used in creative, surprising ways. People often talk about "sense of place", but Dobu's maps go many steps further, bringing along their own sense of mythology. As the lore goes, the Saturnine Chapel itself was made out of books. Dobu himself explains that "the chapel wasn't built to be used, it was built because the vile books had willed it to be, completely independent of any observer, curator, or architect". Pretty as it is, Saturnine Chapel is a vicious mistress, a tough map even by Dobu's standards of cruelty. Movement space is at a serious premium, and resources are balanced precariously, leaving you next to no room for waste or substandard usage. Fights on "Hard" (the UV equivalent) openly embrace RNG -- in a few, bad luck with monster movement will result in a quick death with anything short of TAS-quality play. But in line with a growing trend (see Stardate 20x7, for example), "Hard" is not the intended difficulty. According to the text file, "Normal" (the HMP equivalent) is. I'd venture that roughly 99.5% of players would enjoy this most on either "Easy" (skill 2) or "Normal" (skill 3) and should actually listen to the text file. For most players on skill 4, savescumming will run into a wall. "Normal" is already substantially tougher than most contemporary maps on UV, enough to satisfy all but the most intense spells of bloodlust. The Red Line - Didy Doom 2 - Single Player - Limit Removing - 4.07 MB - Reviewed by: Csonicgo Finding mappers who take advantage of the Doom engine to make stunning abstract visuals, while not going overboard, is pretty much impossible. Then Didy came along and released Bauhaus. Thankfully, Didy is not a one hit wonder, and has released The Red Line: another set of maps that are just as much fun to look at as they are to play. Each map is focused around a particular weapon or gimmick of the Doom engine. Not as involved as Cyber Dreams, The Red Line focuses on mastery of each Doom weapon, provoking infighting, corralling monsters, and then using the environment to kill them. For example, MAP01 (called The Crusher for obvious reasons) requires the player to lure monsters into crushers - yes! It's not encouraged, it's required! Upon starting this map, I realized quickly how rusty I was with regards to the melee weapons. The Red Line demands the player to be proficient with all weapons, in all situations. Remember chaingun sniping, silent BFG tricks, and monster pain chances? If you don't, you're going to have a tough time here. As the maps progress, you are to use stronger weapons, and the difficulty keeps pace. I must admit I couldn't finish on UV. You must fight to get the weapon the map is named after - usually. But damn, these maps are gorgeous. It's as if Didy himself built these structures manually, brick by brick, panel by panel. I've missed seeing detail like this, and I hope it makes a comeback, without the Christmas and the light flares. If you are playing this on a port that uses vanilla code, or a hacked vanilla executable, I'm sorry to say that you will start to "stick" to some walls, and a few hallways straddle the blockmap lines so your shots will go right through some of the monsters. This is unfortunate, but due to that ever-so-weird artifact of having a lot of detail in a small space, one of the things that doomed some of Greenwar 2 to ZDoom 2.x-based ports only, I cannot recommend playing this in anything but a relatively recent (G)ZDoom. But please do play it, just don't expect weapon mods to play well with it. CoolMapForContext - Bonfac Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 169.04 KB - Reviewed by: MysteriousHaruko "CoolMapForContext" is the second wad by Bonfac, and this map was meant for the 2016 Vinesauce mapping contest. I played it in GZDoom on medium skill. Gameplay was simple most of the time. Monster count is minimal in both maps and they're not challenging, except in the last area of Map02 due to a cyberdemon and some barons of hell, but even this becomes easy with some clever infighting, an invulnerability sphere which you can pick up at any moment, and all the ammo at your disposal. In map01, a large portion of map is skippable. In map02, the first invulnerability sphere was worthless and forced, because the monsters weren't as threatening as they would be in larger groups. I disliked the idea of player blocking lines at the edges; I believe that players should fall free, even if the fall will telefrag them to shreds or have teleporters around. Instant walk only-once linedefs were annoying too, for example in map02. This "instant only-once action floor goes up walkable linedef action with blue key" can lock the progress for the player, forcing you to do the noclip cheat. Most of the demon teleports were made through the easiest kind of scripts. Also, the autosave function was very unnecessary and pointless. If I talk about important items like health, ammo, armor bonuses, he didn't place them much, and in some critical places I ran out of ammo and I couldn't heal myself after a fight. The visual side of this mapset. First of all, I liked the foggy outside areas; they give an interesting and mysterious vibe, but the fog effect in inside areas wasn't so good. I noticed lots of misalignments and some unchanged textures provided automatically by Doom Builder 2. Sky viewpoints were way too close to windows and to the player's viewpoint. I think putting a new sky (probably one that blends well with the fog outside) and the linedef action "Line_Horizon" with the same fog effect would be more efficient. Sky viewpoints are mostly visible with the first invulnerability sphere effect at the outside area in map02. The main wad layout is linear, nothing special. Music in both maps are default, in my opinion, wad would be more interesting with custom music. This wad is weaker than "MyFirstUpload", mainly because this mapset feels rushed and untested before this was submitted for that contest and to /idgames. Puzzle of Doom - CrazyDoomguy Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 71.33 KB - Reviewed by: rdwpa The titular puzzles in Puzzle of Doom aren't switch hunts, timed platforming bits, searches for the odd book out in the library, or anything most people would associate with puzzles in Doom. What they are is a set of combat vignettes, the common link being that conventional fighting -- shooting stuff, dodging, etc. -- won't even come close to working on its own. Blockades, such as rows of hell knights in corridors and cyberdemons planted in front of switches, are ubiquitous. You won't have the firepower to clear them on your own. This is where the puzzle part comes in. In every map, the challenge is essentially "How can you use the monsters and the map geometry to create 'events' that remove the blockades?" You're tasked to think outside the box and exploit monster behavior in unconventional ways. It's a cool concept, one I'm very amenable to, but ultimately I felt the set was a mixed bag -- a couple of clever and fun maps alongside a few tedious ones. A recurring pattern is that a solution is inventive but executing it involves lots of unfulfilling repetition, often leaving one to think, "Okay, I get it already". It's worth at least a brief look if the idea appeals to you, but a willingness to IDCLEV would help. Needless to say, if you're looking for conventional Doom gameplay, this set isn't for you. It's not much of a looker either. And be warned if you want to try these maps with saves: in every map it's possible for an early "wrong move" to render the level unwinnable. Mark your progress if you feel compelled to do so but be willing to reset entirely if you reach an impasse. These maps are quite short, after all. Maihama - Memfis Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 156.54 KB - Reviewed by: Not Jabba Maihama is a smallish map with sort of an abstract nukage base theme. The map is laid out as a series of islands with a city built into them, and the nukage sea is very much a part of the gameplay, as you have to manage radsuits and dive down into it on occasion to look for a switch or key. The whole thing is wide open and nonlinear in the tradition of Sandy Petersen's "Downtown." The map starts out with a fairly tough hot start, as you're immediately surrounded by various zombie hitscanners with nothing but a pistol. This sets the tone for the whole map: the goal is to find the weapons first and fight the enemies second, and there are plenty of Doom's deadlier foes around to distract you and trip you up. Ammo is tight, not in the sense that there's not enough of it, but rather because you have to keep moving and hunting around to get what you need to continue fighting, and there's only enough of it to kill all enemies once you've succeeded in finding all the weapons. Since it's a resource management map, it's most challenging toward the beginning, and gradually gets easier as you gain a foothold and build up your arsenal. Like many Memfis maps, Maihama doesn't take itself too seriously and is quick to play. It's a good choice for anyone looking for combat puzzles with a relatively low enemy count. Refrigerator Magnets Volume 1 - theJF Doom 2 - Single Player - Limit Removing - 1.53 MB - Reviewed by: Csonicgo Anyone growing up in the US remembers any neighbor's refrigerator with tons of novelty souvenir magnets, mentioning places you didn't get to go to (but hey, at least you got a t-shirt). What does that have to do with Doom maps? theJF decided to use fridge magnets as inspiration for maps. Proof that we can find inspiration anywhere, right? Wellllll, actually, there's not much inspiration from the magnets; only the names of the maps share any relation. But that doesn't mean the maps aren't fun. Every map is "small", with handfuls of monsters, yet the positioning of said monsters always brings a small scare (the suckers are hiding everywhere). Be prepared to be spooked quite a bit. theJF's use of verticality means a lot of monsters can see you only if you're quite a ways into an area, and the clever use of blocking lines keep those surprises from being triggered too soon. That's a trick I hadn't seen since B.P.R.D. made his Community Chest map back in the day. My only complaint is that the texturing isn't consistent. Large, tall areas with little detail to break up the monotony is still forgivable though considering I'm too busy being paranoid of a cacodemon sneaking up from behind and biting my face. Lighting could also be improved a bit... I'm looking forward to more from this mapper. With some work, maps like these could steal the show in a megawad somewhere. Water Spirit - Manbou(burabojunior) Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 7.06 MB - Reviewed by: Not Jabba Manbou/burabojunior made a splash (no pun intended) last year as the most prolific contributor to the Cacoward-winning Japanese Community Project. Anyone who's been looking forward to seeing more of what this subset of the community has to offer will certainly be pleased with Water Spirit, which offers plenty more of Manbou's creative and playful approach to level design. The three levels of Water Spirit are set around a blue-themed stone temple megastructure with lots of pretty falling water, blue laser barriers, and those great dragon stained glass panels from Quake that are in the CC4 texture pack, many of which hang magically suspended in midair. In fact, the whole mapset has a distinct CC4 flavor to it, which isn't surprising given that it was the texture pack used for JPCP, but the setting still feels fresh, unique, and visually stunning. Water Spirit isn't just about huge structures with lots of detail, though -- because, let's face it, we've all seen plenty of those by now. One of the things that's really cool about this wad is the unseen presence of the spirit alluded to in the title, which never actually shows itself but still somehow feels like a real character that's part of the narrative. In map 01, there are long trails of health bonuses that guide you along to various weapons and powerups, but also have a tendency to draw you headlong into dangerous situations. Manbou's trademark floating spirals of thin blue glowy bars also seem to be connected with the spirit, often rising up out of nowhere as though granting some kind of blessing to the player (not that they actually do anything for you, but the effect is cool as hell). There's even one spot where you step into the middle of them and are propelled straight up into the air to grab the key you need. The water spirit is clearly benevolent, but maybe also mischievous, which adds a fun element. Maps 02 and 03 have high monster counts and tend to be slaughtery, but you have a ton of space to move around in, which really helps the battles to feel like manageable challenges. The big fights can sometimes feel a little bit repetitive -- Manbou seems to like using hordes of small monsters coming through several teleporters at once (which I think are fun for the most part, since you have powerful weaponry to shred them with), and both map 02 and map 03 end with the sudden release of a large number of Arch-Viles into the large open spaces of the temple. But since there are only three maps, and they play pretty quickly despite the high monster counts, I feel like it's OK that there are some combat motifs. My favorite battle is the seemingly endless flood of Imps and Demons released out of a gateway at the climax of map 02, as they seem easy at first but quickly threaten to overrun the entire temple if you don't control them effectively. It's almost like a tower defense game with the player as a solitary mobile tower. That map is also really fun to move around in, and the huge amount of height variation not only makes for some impressive views but also gives you some interesting ways to tackle the combat. Overall, Water Spirit is exactly what all of us new Manbou fans were looking for -- a natural continuation of some of the best ideas from the author's JPCP maps, but with a self-contained story and a format that allowed Manbou to explore a single theme in much greater detail. Highly recommended. The /newstuff Chronicles is a usually-weekly roundup of new items uploaded to the /idgames archive, and it is written entirely by community members like you. If you wish to contribute, the /newstuff Review Center is the place to do so. Register on the Doomworld Forums first if you don't already have an account, because you need one to submit reviews. Special thanks goes to the nearly 300 users who have submitted reviews over the past several years. View full news article
  8. Doomworld Roulette: Session 2 - Various Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 3.53 MB - Reviewed by: Csonicgo Doomworld Roulette: Session 2 is a community project - stay with me - consisting of maps inspired by a theme generator. As a result, we get themes like "The Emerald Farmhouse", "A Christo-Judean Arcology giving way to A Sheepish Little Slice of Hell", and "Some Soups morphing into The Cloudship". Yes, there is a soup-themed map in this. Aesthetically, it's all over the place. Some are better than others, that is for sure. It took me way too long to play these eleven maps, but a lot of these maps were just that large and deserved exploration. They all play differently, and they deserve to be played with pistol start on each map, so don't expect those newfangled weapons mods with money systems to play well. The number of monsters on UV may be too many for some of the complex weapons mods, which tanks the frame rate to garbage. Try those mods at your own risk. Maps that stood out: Pinchy's MAP10 gets hectic quickly. I savescummed the hell out of it, but holy hell is it pretty. MAP11 is, quoth AnonimVio, "shit", but not so much that it's unplayable, it just has a clash of poor lighting vs. the sky chosen for that map. And it's cramped due to being too close to the source material! MAP06 is supposed to be London, if you believe the text file. It also gets the "worst map in this set" recognition for having no gameplay whatsoever. I was bored a minute into playing it. Are we all so afraid of making a map that has any sort of linearity? Joe-Ilya decided to try a "sandbox-like" approach, which means there are no clever monster setups and no sense of progression. Oh, and there's no lighting to speak of. Avoid. MAP04, MAP05, MAP07, and MAP08 are amazing. MAP02 is a little too mazey. MAP03 moonlights as a sadist. MAP01's music is "Fate in Haze" with some awful chords in it, which I had to turn off as soon as I heard it. It also has a lot of Green in it (the map, not the music, that would be weird). I hope there's another one of these coming out soon, with even crazier ideas! 50 Monsters - Brayden "AD_79" Hart et al. Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 6.39 MB - Reviewed by: geo 50 Monsters is aptly named, as each of the 34 maps has 50 monsters, and I see this as a great thing because every level is detailed, compact, interesting, enjoyable, and never outstays its welcome. It's almost a Doom 2 replacement in terms of length of time each one takes. They each have just enough challenge and complexity to where they stay enjoyable. The levels manage to look unique from one another, although there are a few times where the same theme is reused from level to level. There is a good mixture of liquids, height variance, elevators, stairs, open arenas, and catwalks in each map. This pack doesn't seem to do hallways or narrow spaces; there's always enough room to fight and or dodge. They look good, they play good. There is enough ammunition, armor and health with both easy and difficult enemies scattered throughout each level. At the end it usually crescendos with a larger enemy such as an archvile, revenant, or mancubus depending on what you had already fought during the map. For anyone that dislikes backtracking, there is backtracking, but most levels morph, shift, and open up that it seems to make new areas out of old ones. Plus the maps are so compact that it never felt like a chore. The developer also knows when to spawn in a new enemy in an old area to let you know you're going in the right direction. At around a third of the way through the pack, the challenge ramps up as the game is done losing, so it throws four cyberdemons at you to end one level and has four archviles hunting you down in the next. I assume both challenges are designed for you to run away to the next door. The deeper into 50 Monsters I went the more traps there were. Some subtle and surprising such as the entire floor lowering, while others were obvious, such as oh look a lit key in that dark pit. Solid central areas raise to reveal what's hiding inside. The pack is well worth anyone's time to play and it flies by fast. Undeath '94 - Various Ultimate Doom - Single Player - Vanilla - 756.52 KB - Reviewed by: Csonicgo The Doom community likes to make derivative works, even though we won't catch most of them admitting it. Introducing Undeath '94, a set of maps based on 1994 DM maps with some interesting IWAD elements. It also has a story that puts the Doom comic on notice. The story consists of... uh... "When I was young and my horns were just coming in, the girls and I would go down to the Containment Area to play hide-and-seek. Sometimes the nice marines would join in. And there, between the boxes we'd lie in wait to ambush them. But more often, we got over-exited and careless and so they found and fisted us. It was a lot of fun!" Never mind. A lot of maps resemble the Episode/Map slot they replace, but the layouts have been taken from 1994 DM maps. From what little research I did, those IWAD-ish areas were "fit" into the layout, but not faithfully in terms of orientation - even if it feels like they are. I like this approach. But how does it play? For claiming to have "IWAD" difficulty, some levels are ridiculously hard in comparison due to the number of hitscanners and positions of the monsters at the start. (Note: I'm saying "in comparison"; these maps are easy for me.) Get ready to scope out and ration your radsuits accordingly. The main problem is that with that Deathmatch layouts come some really intimidating paths. It's not obvious where to start going! I found myself getting lost a few times, although most of that is due to my habit of backtracking and finding other areas before finishing the first area I visited. I missed a blue key on E1M3 due to this and ran around for a good twenty minutes before it hit me that I had skipped that area. There are also many ways to get to the same place, just as a good DM map should have. Good luck figuring out the fastest path, speedrunners! These maps felt like my first experience with Doom, before I could map IWAD level replicas in my sleep. As a child, I would always get lost in E1M7, and that I can get lost in these maps kind of... takes me back to that time. If you wonder why I'm not being as harsh on these as I could have been: Remember that these layouts are from 1994 - they're older than some of the kids who think they can map for this game. Speaking of Episode Two, E2M1 is boring, lacking lighting, and contains needless repetitive texture usage. Looking at the source layout map, it's not that much different! But at least it's structured! Oh, and E2M2 is an awful tech version of the Unholy Cathedral courtyard with newbie monster placement. Stick with the E1 maps. Devil Trauma - Martin Read Ultimate Doom - Single Player - Vanilla - 32.1 KB - Reviewed by: Memfis Basic short map by a first time author. I didn't notice any technical problems but there isn't much to praise either. The outdoor areas are way too bright to my taste and they are rather scarcely populated, so surviving is trivial. The texturing is logical but unappealing: I would recommend using more colors instead of making areas almost entirely green or red. There is a cute teleporter that works differently depending on how you approach it, which is probably the best part of the wad. Overall, for a "first serious attempt at producing a PWAD" it's definitely passable, now let's just hope that Martin doesn't stop here. MyFirstUpload - Bonfac Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 504.64 KB - Reviewed by: MysteriousHaruko "MyFirstUpload" is also the author's first wad, so when I saw it, I said to myself, "I must check how this plays". Long story short, I expected something bad or unplayable, but I was wrong. This mapset is intended for advanced source ports like Zandronum and GZDoom. I tested this with GZDoom on medium skill. Gameplay was quite weak. It lacks health and ammo. Some places had them, but others not. If the shotgun is presented in the first map (even as a secret), there should be shotgun shells somewhere. Even shotgunners are a good source ofammo, but the author decided to put in player blocking lines. Also, the backpack and super shotgun in the second map are also pointless, because they were placed at the end. Due to quite claustrophobic map design, it was hard to dodge monster attacks. Monster placement felt weird, especially the in early stages. For example, I saw a pinky demon trapped in barrels; it was fun to blast it, but that's it. One backtracking trap was unfair – I was snipped off by shotgun guys from the back while I tried to get away from hell knights; this could be improved if the player had more health and ammo. Now, more about the positive side – friendly marines were like a cherry on top; they took care of monsters while I grabbed some ammo and rested. Some other demon traps caught me off guard (but I quickly got away from them), but I don't think this is a bad thing. As for the visual side of the two "MyFirstUpload" maps. Both maps are based on some sort of moon, so I assumed the theme would be techbase. Both maps use some new textures, GZDoom effects like dynamic lights, 3D floors, and slopes. As I mentioned before, maps don't have much space and focus more on action than exploration. I spotted some misalignments, but they don't break anything. Texture choices are decent for the first map like this, but it doesn't have too many details. A starry skybox added charm to the outside areas. Music in both creations are the same Doom II track - "Message for the Archvile". Maybe I seem like a spoiled player, but I prefer to hear two different tracks. Some complaints about text file now. When I scrolled down and saw the line "May Not Run With: None" and later "Tested With: Gzdoom, Zdoom, Zadronum". This is quite misleading, and it's better to write that this wad won't run in vanilla/ Boom ports. To sum up, "MyFirstUpload" isn't bad for a first wad, of course there are more better wads, but this one gives us hope for the better wads from the same mapper. BaG - Za Warudo Doom 2 - Single Player - GZDoom - 331.4 KB - Reviewed by: MysteriousHaruko "BaG" is Za Warudo's first wad. I believe that this wad name refers to "Black and Green", because map01 says its name is "Black and Green with some brown". This wad is intended for GZDoom and I tested it on medium skill. Gameplay is straightfoward. The player just grabs a better gun, shoots demons and moves on to other sectors. Once I ran out of shotgun ammo and I had shoot a hell knight with the pistol. Besides that, I liked how the gameplay flows, and fighting with archvile near end was fun. The best part of the gameplay was a fake exit trap. It tests player's reaction and observation before he gets crushed to death. I see this trap as some sort of punishment for being way too fast for reaching the exit. In terms of ammo/health/armor distribution, there should be more of them. A few parts of the map require crouching. Visuals, as map01 stated, are full of green, black, and some brown. The author used lots of new textures and they all are well placed. Details are kept at a minimum. Most of the visible misalignments mark the escape route from the crusher. Dynamic lights in this map are pleasing; the author knew how to use them. Actually, there's no proper height variation; the map is mostly flat, besides some 3D floor and slope usage. The main layout isn't too confusing, so I didn't have any problems with navigation. Almost forgot to mention, the wad theme is old good techbase. I liked the author's musical taste in his first map – he bothered to change "Running from Evil" into the metal MIDI "Rainbow in the Dark" by Dio. In the end, a lot of work is still required, but I hope the author will fix all the issues and create something interesting in the future. DEHACKED Revenants - scifista42 Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 6.67 KB - Reviewed by: Philnemba DEHACKED Revenants is a set of not so serious DeHackEd files that change Revenant behaviors in um... unusual ways. Revivant.deh makes Archviles resurrects ANY monster into a revenant, while Pain Elementals spit 'em out instead of Lost Souls. Oh and they're slightly more aggressive and like to leap towards you too. Skel_op.deh basically makes Revenants stupidly OP (hence the name of the file) by giving them double health, double aggressiveness, quadruple speed, instant melee attack, shooting five missiles in a row, and shorter pain animations. Op_reviv.deh is just the two previous DeHackEd files mixed together for double the pain and chaos. While I do find these DeHackEd files amusing, people who completely dislike them should steer clear of this, while everyone else should give them a try for fun and giggles. Math Test - Albatross Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 79.37 KB - Reviewed by: Memfis In this charming little wad the marine has to put down his weapons and solve a few mathematical problems instead. There is some humor in the level that you just have to experience by yourself. If you want to spend a few minutes in a slightly unusual way and you're at least a little bit interested in math, check it out. Ever Shrine - Alter Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 1.54 MB - Reviewed by: leodoom85 Ever Shrine is composed of three cave-hellish and a bit of Eldritch-themed maps that can keep you on alert, and that I'll talk about in more detail for each: Map01 - As you will notice, you don't have much space to maneuver at the starting point. Ruins left by some sunken ships has imps that will attack you. Fortunately, you have some barrels to do the work for you (after all, demons are dumb enough to shoot them). There are some areas that you can pick up weapons like the shotgun, SSG, and chaingun, which are necessary for clearing this map. There's one weird thing about this area and it's the water (first image). The deep water effect (or 3D sectors) used for this plus the damage that you can receive is strange, and that can be a bit annoying. The next major area is the land, and things will be a bit easier than the starting point if you're careful. I really like the combination of mixing the actual land with caves tinted by blue rocks and more water. And the lighting helps a lot too (second image). Another nice touch is in one of the areas which shows a ship in the distance if you step into one of the turrets (third image). Did I mentioned that behind the starting point, there is a nice looking tower? Well, surprise... an archie is waiting there along with a megasphere... tasty. I did that after clearing most of the map and having enough ammo and weapons. Also, that secret backpack really helps for getting more ammo. Overall, it is a nice map that gives you a good challenge and tells you that more of that type of the gameplay is coming. The only part that leaves me worried is the starting point, but that's not too serious if you're careful. OH... what about the music? Great music. Map02 - This is where the mapset gets interesting and raises the difficulty. Three paths to take in the starting point and one of them is blocked. I noticed that there's a clear increase of revenants, spiders, mancubuses and archies, which will be a predominant topic in the next map. Still in caves but lava is added, feeling that you're close to hell or something. I really liked the entrances to those "shrines" or whatever (fourth image), and it's clearly identified with a big letter. A, B and C are the names of those shrines where the main objective is to press a switch which can undo the blocks in the last part. Well, those shrines are obviously infested by hellspawn which changes the amount and difficulty of monsters in each shrine (one of them has a megasphere in it which will help you a lot). I forgot to say something important, and it's related to the custom textures... I dig the look of all of them. Some of the secrets in this map (fifth image) are... obvious but really unexpected. I mean, no one would expect a place that you can walk into casually where one sector is marked as a secret. Oh... and there's a water area near the "C" shrine that was fairly hard to deal with, but luckily there's a soulsphere that your choice to pick up or not. After clearing the shrines and pressing the switches comes the last part of the map with a nice vista of the exit (sixth image). This part was fairly hard too, but the BFG will do the job perfectly fine. After doing that, you reach the exit which is some kind of big portal (seventh image). The architecture for that is great, and what a way to enter the next level. This map is really fun to play combined to some big places packed with monsters. And surprisingly, no traps whatsoever like crushers. Nice detail to the map and another nice music track. Map03 - Continuing to the "same place" after crossing the portal and watching the amount of monsters in the map, you realize that this last map will be fun to play, and after running through the water current, you reach a huge and great looking city (eighth image). This map has some amazing visuals and I like it. But the main event here is the gameplay, so here we go. In order to clear the map and reach to that portal in the center of the map, you need two keys that are in two mayan-inspired pyramids but before reaching that, you need to dispatch the ambushes that this place has in store. This map is pretty generous with the ammo, and you can probably reach full ammo when you're in the final area. One suggestion is to lower the amount of ammo and put a few more monsters to make it balanced. Also, this map is pretty non-linear in terms of getting the keys... you can choose the left way or the right way; it gives you some freedom. To me, the hardest part of the map was in the right side, close to where the key is (ninth image). Fortunately, there's a lot of space to deal with the monsters. Some BFG tactics will help you, or run away from that area to form a bottleneck and kill them easily... any option is valid. And again, lots of ammo scattered around the area, plus some health. Last part (tenth image) is easy enough. Just let the cyberdemon kill the poor archies but have your BFG prepared in case that doesn't happen. Now that you're in that area, you can see why that area looks really good. The switch for that final lift is well hidden, so look well for that, and crossing that final portal ends the level. Great. Overall, this map was awesome. Just some balancing issues with ammo and such, but this map is still hard and you must stay alert at all times, especially the revenants and their homing projectiles, which can be a serious advantage for a big map like this one. Nice music too. Great detail for the map. Liked it. For a three-level mapset played for the first time, it's a great one, and I totally recommend trying this wad. You'll have some fun playing it. The /newstuff Chronicles is a usually-weekly roundup of new items uploaded to the /idgames archive, and it is written entirely by community members like you. If you wish to contribute, the /newstuff Review Center is the place to do so. Register on the Doomworld Forums first if you don't already have an account, because you need one to submit reviews. Special thanks goes to the nearly 300 users who have submitted reviews over the past several years.
  9. Doomworld Roulette: Session 2 - Various Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 3.53 MB - Reviewed by: Csonicgo Doomworld Roulette: Session 2 is a community project - stay with me - consisting of maps inspired by a theme generator. As a result, we get themes like "The Emerald Farmhouse", "A Christo-Judean Arcology giving way to A Sheepish Little Slice of Hell", and "Some Soups morphing into The Cloudship". Yes, there is a soup-themed map in this. Aesthetically, it's all over the place. Some are better than others, that is for sure. It took me way too long to play these eleven maps, but a lot of these maps were just that large and deserved exploration. They all play differently, and they deserve to be played with pistol start on each map, so don't expect those newfangled weapons mods with money systems to play well. The number of monsters on UV may be too many for some of the complex weapons mods, which tanks the frame rate to garbage. Try those mods at your own risk. Maps that stood out: Pinchy's MAP10 gets hectic quickly. I savescummed the hell out of it, but holy hell is it pretty. MAP11 is, quoth AnonimVio, "shit", but not so much that it's unplayable, it just has a clash of poor lighting vs. the sky chosen for that map. And it's cramped due to being too close to the source material! MAP06 is supposed to be London, if you believe the text file. It also gets the "worst map in this set" recognition for having no gameplay whatsoever. I was bored a minute into playing it. Are we all so afraid of making a map that has any sort of linearity? Joe-Ilya decided to try a "sandbox-like" approach, which means there are no clever monster setups and no sense of progression. Oh, and there's no lighting to speak of. Avoid. MAP04, MAP05, MAP07, and MAP08 are amazing. MAP02 is a little too mazey. MAP03 moonlights as a sadist. MAP01's music is "Fate in Haze" with some awful chords in it, which I had to turn off as soon as I heard it. It also has a lot of Green in it (the map, not the music, that would be weird). I hope there's another one of these coming out soon, with even crazier ideas! 50 Monsters - Brayden "AD_79" Hart et al. Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 6.39 MB - Reviewed by: geo 50 Monsters is aptly named, as each of the 34 maps has 50 monsters, and I see this as a great thing because every level is detailed, compact, interesting, enjoyable, and never outstays its welcome. It's almost a Doom 2 replacement in terms of length of time each one takes. They each have just enough challenge and complexity to where they stay enjoyable. The levels manage to look unique from one another, although there are a few times where the same theme is reused from level to level. There is a good mixture of liquids, height variance, elevators, stairs, open arenas, and catwalks in each map. This pack doesn't seem to do hallways or narrow spaces; there's always enough room to fight and or dodge. They look good, they play good. There is enough ammunition, armor and health with both easy and difficult enemies scattered throughout each level. At the end it usually crescendos with a larger enemy such as an archvile, revenant, or mancubus depending on what you had already fought during the map. For anyone that dislikes backtracking, there is backtracking, but most levels morph, shift, and open up that it seems to make new areas out of old ones. Plus the maps are so compact that it never felt like a chore. The developer also knows when to spawn in a new enemy in an old area to let you know you're going in the right direction. At around a third of the way through the pack, the challenge ramps up as the game is done losing, so it throws four cyberdemons at you to end one level and has four archviles hunting you down in the next. I assume both challenges are designed for you to run away to the next door. The deeper into 50 Monsters I went the more traps there were. Some subtle and surprising such as the entire floor lowering, while others were obvious, such as oh look a lit key in that dark pit. Solid central areas raise to reveal what's hiding inside. The pack is well worth anyone's time to play and it flies by fast. Undeath '94 - Various Ultimate Doom - Single Player - Vanilla - 756.52 KB - Reviewed by: Csonicgo The Doom community likes to make derivative works, even though we won't catch most of them admitting it. Introducing Undeath '94, a set of maps based on 1994 DM maps with some interesting IWAD elements. It also has a story that puts the Doom comic on notice. The story consists of... uh... "When I was young and my horns were just coming in, the girls and I would go down to the Containment Area to play hide-and-seek. Sometimes the nice marines would join in. And there, between the boxes we'd lie in wait to ambush them. But more often, we got over-exited and careless and so they found and fisted us. It was a lot of fun!" Never mind. A lot of maps resemble the Episode/Map slot they replace, but the layouts have been taken from 1994 DM maps. From what little research I did, those IWAD-ish areas were "fit" into the layout, but not faithfully in terms of orientation - even if it feels like they are. I like this approach. But how does it play? For claiming to have "IWAD" difficulty, some levels are ridiculously hard in comparison due to the number of hitscanners and positions of the monsters at the start. (Note: I'm saying "in comparison"; these maps are easy for me.) Get ready to scope out and ration your radsuits accordingly. The main problem is that with that Deathmatch layouts come some really intimidating paths. It's not obvious where to start going! I found myself getting lost a few times, although most of that is due to my habit of backtracking and finding other areas before finishing the first area I visited. I missed a blue key on E1M3 due to this and ran around for a good twenty minutes before it hit me that I had skipped that area. There are also many ways to get to the same place, just as a good DM map should have. Good luck figuring out the fastest path, speedrunners! These maps felt like my first experience with Doom, before I could map IWAD level replicas in my sleep. As a child, I would always get lost in E1M7, and that I can get lost in these maps kind of... takes me back to that time. If you wonder why I'm not being as harsh on these as I could have been: Remember that these layouts are from 1994 - they're older than some of the kids who think they can map for this game. Speaking of Episode Two, E2M1 is boring, lacking lighting, and contains needless repetitive texture usage. Looking at the source layout map, it's not that much different! But at least it's structured! Oh, and E2M2 is an awful tech version of the Unholy Cathedral courtyard with newbie monster placement. Stick with the E1 maps. Devil Trauma - Martin Read Ultimate Doom - Single Player - Vanilla - 32.1 KB - Reviewed by: Memfis Basic short map by a first time author. I didn't notice any technical problems but there isn't much to praise either. The outdoor areas are way too bright to my taste and they are rather scarcely populated, so surviving is trivial. The texturing is logical but unappealing: I would recommend using more colors instead of making areas almost entirely green or red. There is a cute teleporter that works differently depending on how you approach it, which is probably the best part of the wad. Overall, for a "first serious attempt at producing a PWAD" it's definitely passable, now let's just hope that Martin doesn't stop here. MyFirstUpload - Bonfac Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 504.64 KB - Reviewed by: MysteriousHaruko "MyFirstUpload" is also the author's first wad, so when I saw it, I said to myself, "I must check how this plays". Long story short, I expected something bad or unplayable, but I was wrong. This mapset is intended for advanced source ports like Zandronum and GZDoom. I tested this with GZDoom on medium skill. Gameplay was quite weak. It lacks health and ammo. Some places had them, but others not. If the shotgun is presented in the first map (even as a secret), there should be shotgun shells somewhere. Even shotgunners are a good source ofammo, but the author decided to put in player blocking lines. Also, the backpack and super shotgun in the second map are also pointless, because they were placed at the end. Due to quite claustrophobic map design, it was hard to dodge monster attacks. Monster placement felt weird, especially the in early stages. For example, I saw a pinky demon trapped in barrels; it was fun to blast it, but that's it. One backtracking trap was unfair – I was snipped off by shotgun guys from the back while I tried to get away from hell knights; this could be improved if the player had more health and ammo. Now, more about the positive side – friendly marines were like a cherry on top; they took care of monsters while I grabbed some ammo and rested. Some other demon traps caught me off guard (but I quickly got away from them), but I don't think this is a bad thing. As for the visual side of the two "MyFirstUpload" maps. Both maps are based on some sort of moon, so I assumed the theme would be techbase. Both maps use some new textures, GZDoom effects like dynamic lights, 3D floors, and slopes. As I mentioned before, maps don't have much space and focus more on action than exploration. I spotted some misalignments, but they don't break anything. Texture choices are decent for the first map like this, but it doesn't have too many details. A starry skybox added charm to the outside areas. Music in both creations are the same Doom II track - "Message for the Archvile". Maybe I seem like a spoiled player, but I prefer to hear two different tracks. Some complaints about text file now. When I scrolled down and saw the line "May Not Run With: None" and later "Tested With: Gzdoom, Zdoom, Zadronum". This is quite misleading, and it's better to write that this wad won't run in vanilla/ Boom ports. To sum up, "MyFirstUpload" isn't bad for a first wad, of course there are more better wads, but this one gives us hope for the better wads from the same mapper. BaG - Za Warudo Doom 2 - Single Player - GZDoom - 331.4 KB - Reviewed by: MysteriousHaruko "BaG" is Za Warudo's first wad. I believe that this wad name refers to "Black and Green", because map01 says its name is "Black and Green with some brown". This wad is intended for GZDoom and I tested it on medium skill. Gameplay is straightfoward. The player just grabs a better gun, shoots demons and moves on to other sectors. Once I ran out of shotgun ammo and I had shoot a hell knight with the pistol. Besides that, I liked how the gameplay flows, and fighting with archvile near end was fun. The best part of the gameplay was a fake exit trap. It tests player's reaction and observation before he gets crushed to death. I see this trap as some sort of punishment for being way too fast for reaching the exit. In terms of ammo/health/armor distribution, there should be more of them. A few parts of the map require crouching. Visuals, as map01 stated, are full of green, black, and some brown. The author used lots of new textures and they all are well placed. Details are kept at a minimum. Most of the visible misalignments mark the escape route from the crusher. Dynamic lights in this map are pleasing; the author knew how to use them. Actually, there's no proper height variation; the map is mostly flat, besides some 3D floor and slope usage. The main layout isn't too confusing, so I didn't have any problems with navigation. Almost forgot to mention, the wad theme is old good techbase. I liked the author's musical taste in his first map – he bothered to change "Running from Evil" into the metal MIDI "Rainbow in the Dark" by Dio. In the end, a lot of work is still required, but I hope the author will fix all the issues and create something interesting in the future. DEHACKED Revenants - scifista42 Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 6.67 KB - Reviewed by: Philnemba DEHACKED Revenants is a set of not so serious DeHackEd files that change Revenant behaviors in um... unusual ways. Revivant.deh makes Archviles resurrects ANY monster into a revenant, while Pain Elementals spit 'em out instead of Lost Souls. Oh and they're slightly more aggressive and like to leap towards you too. Skel_op.deh basically makes Revenants stupidly OP (hence the name of the file) by giving them double health, double aggressiveness, quadruple speed, instant melee attack, shooting five missiles in a row, and shorter pain animations. Op_reviv.deh is just the two previous DeHackEd files mixed together for double the pain and chaos. While I do find these DeHackEd files amusing, people who completely dislike them should steer clear of this, while everyone else should give them a try for fun and giggles. Math Test - Albatross Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 79.37 KB - Reviewed by: Memfis In this charming little wad the marine has to put down his weapons and solve a few mathematical problems instead. There is some humor in the level that you just have to experience by yourself. If you want to spend a few minutes in a slightly unusual way and you're at least a little bit interested in math, check it out. Ever Shrine - Alter Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 1.54 MB - Reviewed by: leodoom85 Ever Shrine is composed of three cave-hellish and a bit of Eldritch-themed maps that can keep you on alert, and that I'll talk about in more detail for each: Map01 - As you will notice, you don't have much space to maneuver at the starting point. Ruins left by some sunken ships has imps that will attack you. Fortunately, you have some barrels to do the work for you (after all, demons are dumb enough to shoot them). There are some areas that you can pick up weapons like the shotgun, SSG, and chaingun, which are necessary for clearing this map. There's one weird thing about this area and it's the water (first image). The deep water effect (or 3D sectors) used for this plus the damage that you can receive is strange, and that can be a bit annoying. The next major area is the land, and things will be a bit easier than the starting point if you're careful. I really like the combination of mixing the actual land with caves tinted by blue rocks and more water. And the lighting helps a lot too (second image). Another nice touch is in one of the areas which shows a ship in the distance if you step into one of the turrets (third image). Did I mentioned that behind the starting point, there is a nice looking tower? Well, surprise... an archie is waiting there along with a megasphere... tasty. I did that after clearing most of the map and having enough ammo and weapons. Also, that secret backpack really helps for getting more ammo. Overall, it is a nice map that gives you a good challenge and tells you that more of that type of the gameplay is coming. The only part that leaves me worried is the starting point, but that's not too serious if you're careful. OH... what about the music? Great music. Map02 - This is where the mapset gets interesting and raises the difficulty. Three paths to take in the starting point and one of them is blocked. I noticed that there's a clear increase of revenants, spiders, mancubuses and archies, which will be a predominant topic in the next map. Still in caves but lava is added, feeling that you're close to hell or something. I really liked the entrances to those "shrines" or whatever (fourth image), and it's clearly identified with a big letter. A, B and C are the names of those shrines where the main objective is to press a switch which can undo the blocks in the last part. Well, those shrines are obviously infested by hellspawn which changes the amount and difficulty of monsters in each shrine (one of them has a megasphere in it which will help you a lot). I forgot to say something important, and it's related to the custom textures... I dig the look of all of them. Some of the secrets in this map (fifth image) are... obvious but really unexpected. I mean, no one would expect a place that you can walk into casually where one sector is marked as a secret. Oh... and there's a water area near the "C" shrine that was fairly hard to deal with, but luckily there's a soulsphere that your choice to pick up or not. After clearing the shrines and pressing the switches comes the last part of the map with a nice vista of the exit (sixth image). This part was fairly hard too, but the BFG will do the job perfectly fine. After doing that, you reach the exit which is some kind of big portal (seventh image). The architecture for that is great, and what a way to enter the next level. This map is really fun to play combined to some big places packed with monsters. And surprisingly, no traps whatsoever like crushers. Nice detail to the map and another nice music track. Map03 - Continuing to the "same place" after crossing the portal and watching the amount of monsters in the map, you realize that this last map will be fun to play, and after running through the water current, you reach a huge and great looking city (eighth image). This map has some amazing visuals and I like it. But the main event here is the gameplay, so here we go. In order to clear the map and reach to that portal in the center of the map, you need two keys that are in two mayan-inspired pyramids but before reaching that, you need to dispatch the ambushes that this place has in store. This map is pretty generous with the ammo, and you can probably reach full ammo when you're in the final area. One suggestion is to lower the amount of ammo and put a few more monsters to make it balanced. Also, this map is pretty non-linear in terms of getting the keys... you can choose the left way or the right way; it gives you some freedom. To me, the hardest part of the map was in the right side, close to where the key is (ninth image). Fortunately, there's a lot of space to deal with the monsters. Some BFG tactics will help you, or run away from that area to form a bottleneck and kill them easily... any option is valid. And again, lots of ammo scattered around the area, plus some health. Last part (tenth image) is easy enough. Just let the cyberdemon kill the poor archies but have your BFG prepared in case that doesn't happen. Now that you're in that area, you can see why that area looks really good. The switch for that final lift is well hidden, so look well for that, and crossing that final portal ends the level. Great. Overall, this map was awesome. Just some balancing issues with ammo and such, but this map is still hard and you must stay alert at all times, especially the revenants and their homing projectiles, which can be a serious advantage for a big map like this one. Nice music too. Great detail for the map. Liked it. For a three-level mapset played for the first time, it's a great one, and I totally recommend trying this wad. You'll have some fun playing it. The /newstuff Chronicles is a usually-weekly roundup of new items uploaded to the /idgames archive, and it is written entirely by community members like you. If you wish to contribute, the /newstuff Review Center is the place to do so. Register on the Doomworld Forums first if you don't already have an account, because you need one to submit reviews. Special thanks goes to the nearly 300 users who have submitted reviews over the past several years. View full news article
  10. Please submit screenshots for your review of "The Blood Trials" or your review will be rejected. Thank you.

  11. Please submit screenshots for 50 Monsters soon or your review will be rejected. Thank you.

    1. geo

      geo

      Oh yeah. Thanks for the reminder. I'll do that now.

    2. AD_79

      AD_79

      ooh neat, happy to hear someone's reviewing it, regardless of if it's positive or negative c:

    3. geo

      geo

      The review has been done for 2 weeks, I just forgot to upload screenshots. Its positive. I enjoyed 50 Monsters.

       

      It also looks like the video recording of the second half was corrupted so I was unable to get screenshots from the second half... at least for the moment.

       

      I also see someone Garret Chan (I think) is doing a play through / speed run on Youtube.

    4. GarrettChan

      GarrettChan

      Yeah, I'll definitely do a review after finishing my runs. Overall I enjoyed the map set quite a lot.

  12. Doom Guy's House - Guy M. Babin Doom 2 - Single Player - GZDoom - 4.31 MB Reviewed by: Csonicgo Oh, oh no. Some of you may remember my Jerry's Kids review. What I overlooked is that the map Guy M. Babin used for it was released before - and by "before", I mean "multiple times". How many times, you ask? I counted around seven instances of this map on /idgames, all with changes that didn't solve the main problem with this map: the layout sucks. What's different this time? The biggest change is that the obnoxious sound and sprite replacements are nowhere to be seen. The music is "okay" on its own, but it doesn't fit at all. The main attraction appears to be the use of 3D floors for layouts instead of splitting the floors using teleporters on stairs. GZDoom cannot figure out what the heck to do with this, and a lot of the drawbacks of using 3D floors are magnified here. Archviles in the basement can resurrect demons already slain on the top floor. This event was so common that I killed the same shotgun guy twenty times, just because I could. On top of that, decorations bleed through the ceiling at certain angles. Mirrors are used only for decoration, colored lighting shows up in a few sectors in the basement, and one area has some dark fog that disappears the moment the light goggles are picked up. Light goggles in this map makes no sense! Everything has the same light level in the first place! The final boss is a spiderdemon in a round room. Circle her and shoot rockets or plasma spam, or if that's too risky, just camp in the hallway. It took me less than ten minutes to finish this. The main difficulty seems to be from the archviles, and since this is a house map, there is more than enough cover for them to be totally useless and devoid of any challenge. I didn't take screenshots of gameplay, because as soon as I started to fight, said fights were over. The rendering was so buggy, what screenshots I did take looked laughably awful from the slime trails and terrible sprite clipping. I dunno if it's my copy of GZDoom, or if this map is completely broken, but I do know this... It's boring, ugly, and stale. Train Station: Episode 1 - JagDogger2525 Ultimate Doom - Single Player - Vanilla - 253 KB - Reviewed by: Walter confetti Train Station: Episode 1 is, as the title suggest, a replacement for Ultimate Doom episode 1, made by JagDogger2525, a mapper with a bunch of other deathmatch maps already released that I don't remember playing. The story behind this map pack is that these levels were made for a forum that the author follows and dropped it since the forums that this guy follows are being frequented only by him and the forum host, so this thing has been forgotten forever by everyone... OR HAS IT? The author decided for some obscure reason to bring it back and... almost finish this episode, bringing us his first magnum opus. The levels are, obviously, set in a train station world of sorts including train stations, techbases, huge train tunnels (with the one in E1M3 filled with FIREBLU that makes a strange dimensional warp effect; imagine that while waiting for the train in the station / subway of your city?), Hell sections, abstract square caves, and canyons where you are running station to station to destroy the demon invasion once and for all from planet Train. If the idea of base sounds nice and kind of a novelty (if we forgive the many other train station maps made during the years since 1994), the execution was done pretty badly. The level layouts look like an amateurish map made with DEU or some other old editor; it is just bunch of square rooms and sectors for the stations and long and tedious hallways for the train tunnels. There's little to no detail (except nice lighting work in E1M1's station); the gameplay is kinda OK but doesn't really follow the episode flow perfectly, since on E1M2 you find yourself battling a horde of spectres with only your pistol. The rest of the battling is a sort of hard battle scenario, with tunnels filled with monsters and ammo, some pseudo-slaughter moments, some arena battles at the end of the episode (that is on E1M7; E1M8 is a sort of secret level here), and overall the feeling of playing something incomplete is highly visible here, so I don't get why the author decided to send this episode to the archives (it has a few good moments, mind you, like the mentioned E1M3 fireblu station and some other nice abstract moments in the middle of the episode and the overall hub feel of the episode layout). But for me it was a forgettable experience; take a look at this if you are a die-hard fan of old (or old-looking) mods from 1994 / 1996, even the most amateurish ones, but this episode could be easily skippable in favor of other levels in the archives. Plasmatology Vol. 1 - pintolinh0 Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 26.03 KB - Reviewed by: Philnemba "Designed to be played on UV" When I first read these words on the text file, I would assume that this map was tested thoroughly... sadly, this isn't the case. The main issue is that the only weapon you get is a plasma rifle with extremely limited ammo to the point where you literally don't have enough ammo to kill all 90+ monsters in this poor looking 1994 visuals map. Best to avoid this and hope one day with a bit more practice, pintolinh0 can deliver a much better map for us. While I did play this on ZDoom, this map IS vanilla compatible, however DON'T open the secret room near the red key room, otherwise the whole map um... collapses itself in Chocolate Doom (prboom+ won't open this secret room for some reason). Map a Day - Topi Hattukangas Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 406.06 KB - Reviewed by: bzzrak Map a Day is a 24-map speedmap megaWAD by Topi Hattukangas. If you haven't heard of him, he has released some very enjoyable but somewhat under-appreciated maps and mapsets, such as T3ST. Basically, this guy knows how to map. His maps generally feel kinda "smart"; he tries to incorporate unique concepts and gimmicks, but while also keeping the core Doom gameplay, and most of the time succeeds in doing that. During October 2016, Topi attempted to make one map every day and end up with a full megaWAD. Well, that particular goal wasn't entirely achieved; he managed to make only 25 maps, one of which was "not working" and therefore dropped. Never mind, 24 is still a megaWAD, right? And boy, what a megaWAD. I played Map a Day using ZDoom 2.8.1, HMP skill, lots of resurrection. In total it took me 2 hours or so? One little thing. The mapset comes a PK3 file (which means that it requires a ZDoom-compatible port), but the maps definitely look vanilla. Not even Boom. The author uses some vanilla mapping techniques, such as self-referencing sectors. The only port feature that the author seems to utilize is MAPINFO, even though that probably would've worked in a WAD file as well... Ah, whatever. I don't wanna start another ports-vs-vanilla debate. Well, I do, but not here. Introducing you to the maps would probably be a better idea in this case. :] All of the maps have rather low monster counts ( (yeah, I said that slaughter-free means fun. Fight me, come on, I dare you. :] ) Though, that doesn't mean the maps are easy. No, sometimes they are quite hard, especially if you are one of those weird folks that doesn't cheat. Some of the spaces you'll find yourself in are quite tight, so you'll have considerably less room to dodge the enemies' attacks, like in map01. In other maps, some gimmick or puzzle will be what prevents you from reaching the magnificent exit switch. Another thing is that you'll be quite low on guns most of the time. The weaponry is very scarce. The pistol and chainsaw will be your only friends until MAP06. If you're one of those super-cool Doomers that feel entitled to having a SSG at all times, this is 707411y NOT 73h m@p537 4u. Otherwise, you'll find out that the limited capability of shooting is actually not that limiting; you won't even notice. Along with being not too crammed with monsters, the maps have another advantage: they are short. You could probably expect that from 1-day speedmaps. They usually take 1-3 minutes to complete... plus an indefinite amount of time spent on unsuccessful attempts to figure them out. You'll probably be able to finish the mapset in about 2-3 playing sessions. Moreover, the maps have some consistency to them, which is kinda nice for a speedmap set. For example, the exits are in the majority of cases represented by skull switches, like in the end of Doom 2's MAP11, which is cool. Also, usually the end of one map will be similar to the beginning of another. The last few maps even end in the same room. There doesn't seem to be any particular plot tying them together that would explain this, but we can probably guess what is the backstory here, shouldn't differ much from the usual. :] Visually, the maps are perfectly fine for the amount of time spent on them. Well, almost. The thing is that Topi seems to have a fetish for the colour BROWN. Some of those levels feature that colour almost exclusively. There's so much brown in here that it feels disgusting. Was all that brown really necessary?? Other than that, the detailing is usually adequate and neat, not crossing into overd33teyl territory, but also (mostly) keeping away from mid-90s aesthetics. Sometimes you have DoomCute™ little sector objects such as ships, boats and furniture. Also, Topi sometimes breaks that one rule of John Romero's, the one that says that different flats should have different heights. That doesn't look too good. Map-by-map review for both folks who appreciate it. If you're not one of them, feel free to skip it! MAP01: Teleporter -- very simple little level. Right after you start the game, you find that you're surrounded by a group of Cacodemons, with more monsters that will come into play a bit later. MAP02: Running From Evil -- a brown fortress in a brown lake, with some brown walkways around. Some Revenants are watching you from above; be patient if you can't kill them right away. An average level. MAP03: Deja Vu? -- You start with the exit pretty much in your sight... but soon you find out that it's not that simple. Between you and the switch stand three sets of teleport gates. Sometimes they teleport you to an area that is a recreation of some IWAD map, such as Deimos Anomaly, Tricks and Traps, and even Plutonia's Well of Souls. You have to figure out which gate will not teleport you, letting you pass instead. The third set of gates takes you to a potentially very nasty fight. This is a very interesting level, I enjoyed it. MAP04: Claustrowhat? -- boring brown set of corridors with different height levels connected by lifts. The only room that's not a corridor (with the red key) looks very nice. Other than that, this is a forgettable level. MAP05: Soul Falls -- contains about 73 billion Pain Elementals and a comparable number of Lost Souls, while you have only a pistol, a chainsaw and a berserk. "Fun". Visually it's a very pretty little level, with even some colour variety. MAP06: In The Sewers -- best level so far. Barely any brown, with delightful green, gray and blue everywhere. Also, oh my god, the SHOTGUN!!! I found the final battle very fun. MAP07: Dark 2 See -- also a good level. The beginning requires you to react very quickly. Then it turns into a dark maze with Mancubuses everywhere around you. After you dispose of those, a huge outdoor area opens up, with around 150 trash monsters, an invulnerability and lots of rockets around. Insane fun. MAP08: The Trench -- mostly an outdoor level. Has some simple platforming with Chaingunners in guard towers shooting at you. The lighting really could've used some work. Other than that, this continues the chain of good levels. MAP09: Remember Citadel -- this level is focused around a small, decently built fortress. I'm really liking these last few levels, I hope it gets even better!! MAP10: Maze Of The Minotaur -- ugh. UGH. This level greets you with a simply atrocious maze. Goddammit, I should've known there was a maze in here somewhere. Even worse, you have to find both a key and its door. I recommend noclip. After you get through that, the level becomes just average, with two rather awkward rooms where you pick up the other two keys and a simple fight. MAP11: Weight Of The Matter -- in the very beginning you face a Cyberdemon, although he can easily be avoided. The rest of the level is some ordinary key-finding. Well, at least it's not brown! MAP12: Toxic Lake -- a cement base in a lake of nukage. Earns my respect for not being brown. Very similar to the previous level. MAP13: Deep Breath -- the very first impression of this level is not too good, but it improves soon. You will see some metal grates above water pools that also block you from the switch on the other side... but you can dive under them! Incredible concept. MAP14: At Last A Battle -- a great level. One huge nukage pool, with some walkways around and monsters hurling projectiles at you from every single direction. Enduring this battle feels like a true achievement. This, along with the fact that there's barely any brown, makes this level one of my favourites. MAP15: Are Barrels Fun? -- secret level that I couldn't find. MAP16: Out Of The Shadows -- Oh. Brown. Meh. The blue key area is very smartly designed. MAP17: Rock The Docs -- you are in a dock of some sort and you need to get to your boat. The first (indoor) half is easy, but the outdoor half can get tricky. MAP18: Peaceful Boatride -- you thought you could get some sleep while you sail to your next destination, without being threatened by demons? No such luck. This is a small level where monsters keep coming in waves and you just have to survive. If you jump and look at the sea, you might find that it looks a bit glitchy due to all the ambushes unleashed upon you from it. Hey Topi, people can jump now, you know? This level is quite hard. MAP19: Towers R Odd -- the rest of your voyage was not too problematic, and you successfully arrive at the dock. However, a squad of zombies were waiting for you there! There are some powerups on raised platforms here; you'll get the opportunity to lower them as you progress through the level. The ending fight can be a bit surprising. MAP20: Feel The Hot Of Hellfire? -- starts out as a cute, relaxed little techbase, but then it turns out that there's more to it than you might think! You get the first taste of Hell when you see a marble room, followed by a big cavern with IoS pads on the floor. Good level. Also I'm proud to announce that the levels become far less brown from now on! MAP21: Nether? Whatever... -- whoa, you're really in Hell now! From a surreal cavern you enter a marble structure. Has some nasty fights. A beautiful level. Also, you are introduced to the exit room that you will revisit in the next few levels. MAP22, apparently named "Rewind", was dropped due to "not working". After finishing 21 you go straight to 23. MAP23: Arch-Enemy -- you start in a tiny room, with some barrels around you; that room soon expands, twice, with a fight accompanying each expansion. Then you encounter a really tricky fight with some Revenants on a platform. You are in a very inconvenient position here, so shattering them into bones can be challenging. The doors in that room with the Revenants can be a bit annoying due to the way they were set up. Following that is a moderately hard fight against some Cacodemons and Pain Elementals; after that you grab the key and face your arch-enemy. The arch-enemy fight is kinda underwhelming, as it's a tiny ring-shaped room and hiding from his attack is trivial. Also there's some sort of sequence where you get an invulnerability to blow up a LOT of barrels, which was awkward, but cute. MAP24: Tower Of Babel -- again you start on your trusty vessel, with a huge ziggurat in front of you. You need to ascend to the top and grab the key from the tower's master and then go back down, where the key door is situated. MAP25: Dead Again -- Icon of Sin fight :] Whee, we're done! Overall, I liked Map a Day. It's a very neat set of speedmaps, with some brilliant concepts, but also not too gimmick-oriented. I recommend it if you want some "bite-sized" classic-style Doom maps to pass some time. Kudos to Topi for creating such a good mapset! Trigger-happy - pintolinh0 Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 52.68 KB - Reviewed by: Not Jabba This is the author's second map, and it has all the tropes you know and hate from every other beginner map, including D_RUNNIN as the default music. It's basically just a series of rectangles where you kill the monsters, hit a switch, and move to the next rectangle. Most of those rectangles are full of hitscanners, including many SS Nazis. For the entire first half of the level, you get no weapon except a shotgun, and you're expected to kill Mancubuses, Arachnotrons, Pain Elementals, and a Baron with it, which is no fun for anyone. The second half of the level is more of the same; you at least get a rocket launcher, but nowhere near enough ammo to actually kill the Mastermind that's camping on the exit switch. Not worthwhile. The /newstuff Chronicles is a usually-weekly roundup of new items uploaded to the /idgames archive, and it is written entirely by community members like you. If you wish to contribute, the /newstuff Review Center is the place to do so. Register on the Doomworld Forums first if you don't already have an account, because you need one to submit reviews. Special thanks goes to the nearly 300 users who have submitted reviews over the past several years.
  13. Doom Guy's House - Guy M. Babin Doom 2 - Single Player - GZDoom - 4.31 MB Reviewed by: Csonicgo Oh, oh no. Some of you may remember my Jerry's Kids review. What I overlooked is that the map Guy M. Babin used for it was released before - and by "before", I mean "multiple times". How many times, you ask? I counted around seven instances of this map on /idgames, all with changes that didn't solve the main problem with this map: the layout sucks. What's different this time? The biggest change is that the obnoxious sound and sprite replacements are nowhere to be seen. The music is "okay" on its own, but it doesn't fit at all. The main attraction appears to be the use of 3D floors for layouts instead of splitting the floors using teleporters on stairs. GZDoom cannot figure out what the heck to do with this, and a lot of the drawbacks of using 3D floors are magnified here. Archviles in the basement can resurrect demons already slain on the top floor. This event was so common that I killed the same shotgun guy twenty times, just because I could. On top of that, decorations bleed through the ceiling at certain angles. Mirrors are used only for decoration, colored lighting shows up in a few sectors in the basement, and one area has some dark fog that disappears the moment the light goggles are picked up. Light goggles in this map makes no sense! Everything has the same light level in the first place! The final boss is a spiderdemon in a round room. Circle her and shoot rockets or plasma spam, or if that's too risky, just camp in the hallway. It took me less than ten minutes to finish this. The main difficulty seems to be from the archviles, and since this is a house map, there is more than enough cover for them to be totally useless and devoid of any challenge. I didn't take screenshots of gameplay, because as soon as I started to fight, said fights were over. The rendering was so buggy, what screenshots I did take looked laughably awful from the slime trails and terrible sprite clipping. I dunno if it's my copy of GZDoom, or if this map is completely broken, but I do know this... It's boring, ugly, and stale. Train Station: Episode 1 - JagDogger2525 Ultimate Doom - Single Player - Vanilla - 253 KB - Reviewed by: Walter confetti Train Station: Episode 1 is, as the title suggest, a replacement for Ultimate Doom episode 1, made by JagDogger2525, a mapper with a bunch of other deathmatch maps already released that I don't remember playing. The story behind this map pack is that these levels were made for a forum that the author follows and dropped it since the forums that this guy follows are being frequented only by him and the forum host, so this thing has been forgotten forever by everyone... OR HAS IT? The author decided for some obscure reason to bring it back and... almost finish this episode, bringing us his first magnum opus. The levels are, obviously, set in a train station world of sorts including train stations, techbases, huge train tunnels (with the one in E1M3 filled with FIREBLU that makes a strange dimensional warp effect; imagine that while waiting for the train in the station / subway of your city?), Hell sections, abstract square caves, and canyons where you are running station to station to destroy the demon invasion once and for all from planet Train. If the idea of base sounds nice and kind of a novelty (if we forgive the many other train station maps made during the years since 1994), the execution was done pretty badly. The level layouts look like an amateurish map made with DEU or some other old editor; it is just bunch of square rooms and sectors for the stations and long and tedious hallways for the train tunnels. There's little to no detail (except nice lighting work in E1M1's station); the gameplay is kinda OK but doesn't really follow the episode flow perfectly, since on E1M2 you find yourself battling a horde of spectres with only your pistol. The rest of the battling is a sort of hard battle scenario, with tunnels filled with monsters and ammo, some pseudo-slaughter moments, some arena battles at the end of the episode (that is on E1M7; E1M8 is a sort of secret level here), and overall the feeling of playing something incomplete is highly visible here, so I don't get why the author decided to send this episode to the archives (it has a few good moments, mind you, like the mentioned E1M3 fireblu station and some other nice abstract moments in the middle of the episode and the overall hub feel of the episode layout). But for me it was a forgettable experience; take a look at this if you are a die-hard fan of old (or old-looking) mods from 1994 / 1996, even the most amateurish ones, but this episode could be easily skippable in favor of other levels in the archives. Plasmatology Vol. 1 - pintolinh0 Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 26.03 KB - Reviewed by: Philnemba "Designed to be played on UV" When I first read these words on the text file, I would assume that this map was tested thoroughly... sadly, this isn't the case. The main issue is that the only weapon you get is a plasma rifle with extremely limited ammo to the point where you literally don't have enough ammo to kill all 90+ monsters in this poor looking 1994 visuals map. Best to avoid this and hope one day with a bit more practice, pintolinh0 can deliver a much better map for us. While I did play this on ZDoom, this map IS vanilla compatible, however DON'T open the secret room near the red key room, otherwise the whole map um... collapses itself in Chocolate Doom (prboom+ won't open this secret room for some reason). Map a Day - Topi Hattukangas Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 406.06 KB - Reviewed by: bzzrak Map a Day is a 24-map speedmap megaWAD by Topi Hattukangas. If you haven't heard of him, he has released some very enjoyable but somewhat under-appreciated maps and mapsets, such as T3ST. Basically, this guy knows how to map. His maps generally feel kinda "smart"; he tries to incorporate unique concepts and gimmicks, but while also keeping the core Doom gameplay, and most of the time succeeds in doing that. During October 2016, Topi attempted to make one map every day and end up with a full megaWAD. Well, that particular goal wasn't entirely achieved; he managed to make only 25 maps, one of which was "not working" and therefore dropped. Never mind, 24 is still a megaWAD, right? And boy, what a megaWAD. I played Map a Day using ZDoom 2.8.1, HMP skill, lots of resurrection. In total it took me 2 hours or so? One little thing. The mapset comes a PK3 file (which means that it requires a ZDoom-compatible port), but the maps definitely look vanilla. Not even Boom. The author uses some vanilla mapping techniques, such as self-referencing sectors. The only port feature that the author seems to utilize is MAPINFO, even though that probably would've worked in a WAD file as well... Ah, whatever. I don't wanna start another ports-vs-vanilla debate. Well, I do, but not here. Introducing you to the maps would probably be a better idea in this case. :] All of the maps have rather low monster counts ( (yeah, I said that slaughter-free means fun. Fight me, come on, I dare you. :] ) Though, that doesn't mean the maps are easy. No, sometimes they are quite hard, especially if you are one of those weird folks that doesn't cheat. Some of the spaces you'll find yourself in are quite tight, so you'll have considerably less room to dodge the enemies' attacks, like in map01. In other maps, some gimmick or puzzle will be what prevents you from reaching the magnificent exit switch. Another thing is that you'll be quite low on guns most of the time. The weaponry is very scarce. The pistol and chainsaw will be your only friends until MAP06. If you're one of those super-cool Doomers that feel entitled to having a SSG at all times, this is 707411y NOT 73h m@p537 4u. Otherwise, you'll find out that the limited capability of shooting is actually not that limiting; you won't even notice. Along with being not too crammed with monsters, the maps have another advantage: they are short. You could probably expect that from 1-day speedmaps. They usually take 1-3 minutes to complete... plus an indefinite amount of time spent on unsuccessful attempts to figure them out. You'll probably be able to finish the mapset in about 2-3 playing sessions. Moreover, the maps have some consistency to them, which is kinda nice for a speedmap set. For example, the exits are in the majority of cases represented by skull switches, like in the end of Doom 2's MAP11, which is cool. Also, usually the end of one map will be similar to the beginning of another. The last few maps even end in the same room. There doesn't seem to be any particular plot tying them together that would explain this, but we can probably guess what is the backstory here, shouldn't differ much from the usual. :] Visually, the maps are perfectly fine for the amount of time spent on them. Well, almost. The thing is that Topi seems to have a fetish for the colour BROWN. Some of those levels feature that colour almost exclusively. There's so much brown in here that it feels disgusting. Was all that brown really necessary?? Other than that, the detailing is usually adequate and neat, not crossing into overd33teyl territory, but also (mostly) keeping away from mid-90s aesthetics. Sometimes you have DoomCute™ little sector objects such as ships, boats and furniture. Also, Topi sometimes breaks that one rule of John Romero's, the one that says that different flats should have different heights. That doesn't look too good. Map-by-map review for both folks who appreciate it. If you're not one of them, feel free to skip it! MAP01: Teleporter -- very simple little level. Right after you start the game, you find that you're surrounded by a group of Cacodemons, with more monsters that will come into play a bit later. MAP02: Running From Evil -- a brown fortress in a brown lake, with some brown walkways around. Some Revenants are watching you from above; be patient if you can't kill them right away. An average level. MAP03: Deja Vu? -- You start with the exit pretty much in your sight... but soon you find out that it's not that simple. Between you and the switch stand three sets of teleport gates. Sometimes they teleport you to an area that is a recreation of some IWAD map, such as Deimos Anomaly, Tricks and Traps, and even Plutonia's Well of Souls. You have to figure out which gate will not teleport you, letting you pass instead. The third set of gates takes you to a potentially very nasty fight. This is a very interesting level, I enjoyed it. MAP04: Claustrowhat? -- boring brown set of corridors with different height levels connected by lifts. The only room that's not a corridor (with the red key) looks very nice. Other than that, this is a forgettable level. MAP05: Soul Falls -- contains about 73 billion Pain Elementals and a comparable number of Lost Souls, while you have only a pistol, a chainsaw and a berserk. "Fun". Visually it's a very pretty little level, with even some colour variety. MAP06: In The Sewers -- best level so far. Barely any brown, with delightful green, gray and blue everywhere. Also, oh my god, the SHOTGUN!!! I found the final battle very fun. MAP07: Dark 2 See -- also a good level. The beginning requires you to react very quickly. Then it turns into a dark maze with Mancubuses everywhere around you. After you dispose of those, a huge outdoor area opens up, with around 150 trash monsters, an invulnerability and lots of rockets around. Insane fun. MAP08: The Trench -- mostly an outdoor level. Has some simple platforming with Chaingunners in guard towers shooting at you. The lighting really could've used some work. Other than that, this continues the chain of good levels. MAP09: Remember Citadel -- this level is focused around a small, decently built fortress. I'm really liking these last few levels, I hope it gets even better!! MAP10: Maze Of The Minotaur -- ugh. UGH. This level greets you with a simply atrocious maze. Goddammit, I should've known there was a maze in here somewhere. Even worse, you have to find both a key and its door. I recommend noclip. After you get through that, the level becomes just average, with two rather awkward rooms where you pick up the other two keys and a simple fight. MAP11: Weight Of The Matter -- in the very beginning you face a Cyberdemon, although he can easily be avoided. The rest of the level is some ordinary key-finding. Well, at least it's not brown! MAP12: Toxic Lake -- a cement base in a lake of nukage. Earns my respect for not being brown. Very similar to the previous level. MAP13: Deep Breath -- the very first impression of this level is not too good, but it improves soon. You will see some metal grates above water pools that also block you from the switch on the other side... but you can dive under them! Incredible concept. MAP14: At Last A Battle -- a great level. One huge nukage pool, with some walkways around and monsters hurling projectiles at you from every single direction. Enduring this battle feels like a true achievement. This, along with the fact that there's barely any brown, makes this level one of my favourites. MAP15: Are Barrels Fun? -- secret level that I couldn't find. MAP16: Out Of The Shadows -- Oh. Brown. Meh. The blue key area is very smartly designed. MAP17: Rock The Docs -- you are in a dock of some sort and you need to get to your boat. The first (indoor) half is easy, but the outdoor half can get tricky. MAP18: Peaceful Boatride -- you thought you could get some sleep while you sail to your next destination, without being threatened by demons? No such luck. This is a small level where monsters keep coming in waves and you just have to survive. If you jump and look at the sea, you might find that it looks a bit glitchy due to all the ambushes unleashed upon you from it. Hey Topi, people can jump now, you know? This level is quite hard. MAP19: Towers R Odd -- the rest of your voyage was not too problematic, and you successfully arrive at the dock. However, a squad of zombies were waiting for you there! There are some powerups on raised platforms here; you'll get the opportunity to lower them as you progress through the level. The ending fight can be a bit surprising. MAP20: Feel The Hot Of Hellfire? -- starts out as a cute, relaxed little techbase, but then it turns out that there's more to it than you might think! You get the first taste of Hell when you see a marble room, followed by a big cavern with IoS pads on the floor. Good level. Also I'm proud to announce that the levels become far less brown from now on! MAP21: Nether? Whatever... -- whoa, you're really in Hell now! From a surreal cavern you enter a marble structure. Has some nasty fights. A beautiful level. Also, you are introduced to the exit room that you will revisit in the next few levels. MAP22, apparently named "Rewind", was dropped due to "not working". After finishing 21 you go straight to 23. MAP23: Arch-Enemy -- you start in a tiny room, with some barrels around you; that room soon expands, twice, with a fight accompanying each expansion. Then you encounter a really tricky fight with some Revenants on a platform. You are in a very inconvenient position here, so shattering them into bones can be challenging. The doors in that room with the Revenants can be a bit annoying due to the way they were set up. Following that is a moderately hard fight against some Cacodemons and Pain Elementals; after that you grab the key and face your arch-enemy. The arch-enemy fight is kinda underwhelming, as it's a tiny ring-shaped room and hiding from his attack is trivial. Also there's some sort of sequence where you get an invulnerability to blow up a LOT of barrels, which was awkward, but cute. MAP24: Tower Of Babel -- again you start on your trusty vessel, with a huge ziggurat in front of you. You need to ascend to the top and grab the key from the tower's master and then go back down, where the key door is situated. MAP25: Dead Again -- Icon of Sin fight :] Whee, we're done! Overall, I liked Map a Day. It's a very neat set of speedmaps, with some brilliant concepts, but also not too gimmick-oriented. I recommend it if you want some "bite-sized" classic-style Doom maps to pass some time. Kudos to Topi for creating such a good mapset! Trigger-happy - pintolinh0 Doom 2 - Single Player - ZDoom Compatible - 52.68 KB - Reviewed by: Not Jabba This is the author's second map, and it has all the tropes you know and hate from every other beginner map, including D_RUNNIN as the default music. It's basically just a series of rectangles where you kill the monsters, hit a switch, and move to the next rectangle. Most of those rectangles are full of hitscanners, including many SS Nazis. For the entire first half of the level, you get no weapon except a shotgun, and you're expected to kill Mancubuses, Arachnotrons, Pain Elementals, and a Baron with it, which is no fun for anyone. The second half of the level is more of the same; you at least get a rocket launcher, but nowhere near enough ammo to actually kill the Mastermind that's camping on the exit switch. Not worthwhile. The /newstuff Chronicles is a usually-weekly roundup of new items uploaded to the /idgames archive, and it is written entirely by community members like you. If you wish to contribute, the /newstuff Review Center is the place to do so. Register on the Doomworld Forums first if you don't already have an account, because you need one to submit reviews. Special thanks goes to the nearly 300 users who have submitted reviews over the past several years. View full news article
  14. Miasma - Thomas "tourniquet" Seifert Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 2.42 MB - Reviewed by: Nine Inch Heels Miasma was uploaded to the archives on December 16th, 2016. I don't feel comfortable calling it a "map", because, more than anything, Miasma is a place so alien and malicious, within a few minutes it will make you realize you are unwelcome in its presence. In Greek mythology, a miasma is a contagious force with an independent life of its own. This wonderfully detailed and disturbingly abstract environment is dominated by the color green, yet it combines many different themes, which flow into one another seamlessly as the player peels back Miasma's many layers during exploration. This... place is huge. Oppressive open areas and treacherous tight quarters await the brave, keeping them alert at all times, and making them feel weak and fragile. Miasma is as much a piece of art and ingenuity as it is about gameplay variety. If there was something like "the everything map", Miasma more than deserves to be considered as such. Tourniquet managed to constantly mix up the gameplay in this non-linear microcosm: from exploration to close quarters combat to slaughter, all of which is delivered with many brilliantly executed and varied nuances. No encounter feels like the previous one, adding even more to the impression that this place is looking to get rid of you by any means necessary. That's not to say the map plays unfair. On the contrary, there is a reliable solution for everything here. However, if you want to see everything this green behemoth has on offer, I suggest saving your progress occasionally during your first, or maybe even second playthrough, in particular when playing on UV difficulty. Miasma can take well over 30 minutes to finish, even for quite experienced players, and dying 20 minutes into the map to then start it all over again may be unpleasant. Encounter design throughout the map is consistently at high quality. Nicely orchestrated small encounters with impeccable thing placement create about as much psychological pressure as the relatively large scale encounters which take place in the the deepest bowels of this festering abomination. The pacing is top notch every time; nothing ever feels boring, tedious, or uninteresting, let alone trivial. When it comes to resources, you will be kept on a relatively short leash. Matching the visual theme of the map, players are going be limited to green armor for significant periods of time. When you get hit, it will hurt. In spite of the relatively low Archvile/Cyberdemon count when compared to other maps with roughly 1000-1500 monsters, the opposition is potentially lethal, and mistakes will get punished severely. Tourniquet is reasonably generous with firepower. You will always be given a little bit more than you might need, but never so much as to allow for an overall wasteful or careless play-style. Many encounters, especially early on, but also a bit later down the line, are designed around SSG/RL use and quick thinking paired with a good tactical approach on the player's end. As a consequence of limited resources, the creatively hidden secrets in Miasma are not only meaningful, but they also feel very rewarding to discover. Some secrets require a good eye; others can be found by way of hearing "something" happen. Even after having played many Cacoward-winning megawads, I was more than pleasantly surprised by this astonishing masterpiece. It is one of the best Dooming experiences I have had. Infested Outpost - Cacodemon9000 Doom 2 - Single Player - Limit Removing - 1.5 MB - Reviewed by: geo Infested Outpost is a sea of grey, cement, dark tunnels all wrapped into a near-maddening labyrinth. It starts out enjoyable enough, a fair amount of health, ammo and challenge. Enough ammo to have you switching weapons until you find the armory. Health is abundant in key locations that you'll return to again and again. The key here is again-and-again. Wow this is a tangled web of a complex. All three keys are used, naturally, but there are color coated switch doors as well. Green to green, yellow to yellow. I was lost and confused backtracking to the very beginning of the level to discover the room of switches that I had walked by without noticing. To unlock that bank of two switches, I had to stumble my way through a pitch black theater that was darker than any Duke Nukem theater. Getting lost in a dark room was only the tip of the iceberg, as there is a network of dark tunnels around big rooms. These tunnels are at 45 degree angles and there are lights at select moments, but it was more of a nuisance than a moment of dread. There are chaingunners, imps and barons to fight in these close quarters with little room to strafe. Another issue with these dark tunnels is that its tough to discern one tunnel from the next without your trusty map. Oh but it's tough to navigate even with a map, because these tunnels have ladders that work as silent teleporters to different sections of the map. So there was no clear cut way to find a route via the map when looking at the tunnels. This would be fine if you didn't have to back track through them so often. I got the blue key and it was next to a switch that required a yellow key, which meant I'd have to trek through the tunnels another time. What I failed to mention is the fact that blue key needs to be used on a blue key switch somewhere else in the tunnels. Outside these menacing tunnels are big storage rooms where a lot of the action happens. In each of these large warehouses is a slew of imps, barons, and chaingunners. As we all know the chaingunners can snipe you from across a room with no real sense of where it's coming from. To the level's credit there is always cover, just know where you're getting shot from. To make things both more detailed and frustrating, there were half doors. Doors that were stuck half open, so you could see beneath them, but they never open. So when looking at a map to see oh there's a red door I haven't gone in; the trick was these doors are jammed half open and can't be opened even if at times you could still get to the other side. Another detriment is just how grey it is. I could still tell one room from the next, and a lot of rooms had good detail and interesting concepts, but it's still a lot of grey on grey punctuated with blue fabrics in the occasional living quarters and boxes... lots of boxes. Speaking of boxes, this is a vanilla DOOM 2 WAD so there's no jump. The red key requires some intense accuracy running off a box and landing on another, but only after taking a long route up a bunch of crates and over two other gaps. After ten tries, I gave up, cheated and jumped. I should also specify that this WAD was meant to use the embedded DeHackEd file, so perhaps that would have given me some sort of run ability not native to the vanilla version. On the good side of the map, it feels like it could be a real outpost. There are barracks, a morgue, the movie theater and so on. There are a few moments it felt like the map design was inspired both by Duke as I mentioned before, but also a bit like Doom 3 with large trafficking tunnels that have walkways and stairs on both sides. If you're someone that likes intense puzzles, this is for you, but as I went further into the rabbit hole, it only ended in anguish. DAR's DOOM Marathon - Davester2296, uploaded by Mr. Chris Doom/Doom 2 - N/A - OGG Support - 212.54 MB Reviewed by: geo How do you review an entire recreation of both Doom and Doom 2's soundtracks? You play both games back to back... or you just listen to each level using cheats to skip map to map. Both soundtracks are great and it's tough to disagree with a pack that has two game soundtrack replacements in it. The first soundtrack is more metal with a nice balance of synthetic without deviating from the original songs too much. Who would have imagined a soundtrack covering metal songs would get covered by metal? The guitars are bigger and more pronounced, but other things are more subtle and menacing. There is also a good deal of variety to make each song different from what could have been a strict metal recreation. Half the songs are metal with walls of guitars, while the other half is more creative to stand out. To buffer the intense metal of the first album, there are synthetic symphonies, creepy, and dare I say other-worldly songs. Some things begin more sedate and harmonic before punching you in the face with guitars. There is definitely a contrast between the first and second game soundtracks as if different instruments were used. The drums and guitars both sound different and there is less use of synthetic sound. The second game sounds far more mellow and symphonic compared to the big metal of the first. The guitar riffs sound more subdued than skull crushing. Maybe that's just how it always was, less intense than the original game. If you need a fresh pack of the familiar chords and beats to blow holes in monsters, this is your pack. Doom Project Version 1.1 - Guy M. Babin Doom/Doom 2 - N/A - OGG Support - 161.78 MB Reviewed by: geo This is Doom Project Version 1.1, but what is it? Could it be remaking Doom 1? Could it be someone's first level? No... It's a techno and/or dance music pack that replaces the music of Knee Deep in the Dead inspired from Unreal Tournament 3. Would you have ever guessed that from the title? Nope. The bottom line of this or any music replacement soundtrack isn't how good or bad it is, but does it fit the game? In this case, that's a big no. Perhaps I've been brainwashed over two decades into thinking Doom is about metal, guitars, and ambience rather than synthetic beats. The only song that comes close to fitting in tone is E1M4, as it has a good, consistent beat from start to finish. In fact I think video game music has to hook you in within the first few chords for it to affect you, otherwise it turns into bland and run of the mill. The songs have nothing to grab my attention, and maybe that's the genre as a whole. Even if well done, this pack might as well have just been taxi cabs honking in traffic and I would have felt the same. Maybe the music just never energized me the same way the original soundtrack did in its humble midi form. It may have fit Doom better if it had been inspired by the game rather than Unreal Tournament 3. By that logic, there needs to be more Mega Man inspired music in Doom. Most people agree that Mega Man has some of the greatest video game music of all time, but "does it fit the blood soaked halls and zombie bellows of Doom?" Maybe if you're into the music's genre you'll appreciate it more than I did, but after 35 minutes of hearing it, I will never listen to it again. Shovelware Adventure! - Doomkid (Doomkid92 on steam) Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 2.28 MB - Reviewed by: Not Jabba Shovelware Adventure is a throwback to the early days of Doom, when you could get away with raking up a bunch of other people's random crap levels and throwing them onto a CD to sell commercially. It doesn't actually play like a shovelware map, fortunately. Instead, it's more about having a cheesy retro feel and a very simple but high-quality design. The detailing is pretty spartan and I don't think there are any custom textures, but there's plenty of fun new content to help keep it interesting, mostly in terms of monsters and decorations. Besides the recolors and reskins, some of the new monsters include a spectral Imp and a plasma-shooting zombie with Duke sunglasses. These sorts of monsters don't create new gameplay, but they do contribute to the overall sense of variety and light-hearted fun, so I think they serve this map well. Two monsters that I do think add something new to the game are a tougher Imp with a faster double fireball attack and a zombie that fires homing missiles. Both of them take more damage than you expect and are unlikely to flinch, but their seeming weakness makes it very tempting to get cocky and face them out in the open with the assumption that you can stun-lock them or kill them very quickly, exposing you to some pretty dangerous attacks. There's also a nice custom music track that fits well with the retro feel of the map. The level is very large and very open for exploration; it includes three keycards, but you don't even need all of them to win, and they're mostly used for opening up more optional areas where you can get better equipment. I never got tired of running around trying to find everything. Enemies are packed in pretty densely, but since most of them are weak, the map isn't too hard, as long as you can survive the occasional packs of hitscanners. I love this sort of gameplay, where there are tons of mostly low-tier monsters, so you're always mowing something down. The finale is a challenge, throwing you into the middle of an monster spawner battle and forcing you to clear a Spider Mastermind and a Cyberdemon out of the way before you can get into position to destroy the source (not too hard or annoying as far as IoS fights go, but it did catch me by surprise). Shovelware Adventure might be too quirky for some players, but I highly recommend it. Superfast Mapping: Domination Edition - Combinebobnt, Argentum, Dranzer, [IFOC]75, Razgriz/Strangle, Gustavo6046 Doom 2 - Domination - Zandronum - 15.79 MB - Reviewed by: Decay Domination is a team game mode that Zandronum features. The aim of the game is earning points by "owning" a sector for extended periods of time. A player "owns" a sector for their team by walking over a line that recognizes their team colour and then assigns the sector to the team. Very few map packs have been made for this mode. CombinebobNT led this project after authoring Superfast DM, CTF, and Duel. None of these wads get played and are of dubious quality, and you would think after two wads you would give it up, but Bobby doesn't take hints very well. This wad is an example of a horrendous philosophy of "Doom players play anything with enough people." I don't think quality control existed in this project. The floors are quite bumpy all over the place, particularly in high traffic areas, even more specifically many of the domination points themselves. It's not really a great idea. Some areas are too tight where they shouldn't be, and others are way too open where they could probably stand for some more cover. Many recurring problems in this set could be fixed with testing, but I feel like nobody cared because SPEED MAPS. Many of maps have a good flow, if you were running around in single player that is. The maps feature 3-D floors in general game play use instead of decoration, and fit in really well, adding a good vertical dimension to the maps, boosting general movement flow. There are only a few real dead-end feeling spots in maps or areas that require excessive run-around. I feel like these maps would play better in straightforward DM. In many instances spawns are so close to the domination points, you don't have much opportunity to defend it in any reasonably sized game. It's a constant barrage of death with a little bit of "walk over the sector lines" thrown in. Bob will read this and say to me "Decay that's the point" or "That's a good thing!" but approximately not one of these people enjoyed the maps, so perhaps that's saying something. Even for public play the disorganization reaches disastrous levels, particularly in maps that look the same everywhere. The point names are lazily thrown in with no creativity (hallmark of a speedpack?), leaving some people maybe wondering where exactly the top, middle, and bottom points are. The maps are mostly clean, coherent, and smooth on the walls, which usually translates into reasonable maps visually, but instead many maps suffer from being overly plain and boring. Some of the map themes come straight out of AeonDM (made by some of the same authors) but look like low-budget, D-grade movie versions of them. The wad, suitably for speedmaps, looks like a ZDaemon hand-me-down for Zandronum from the mid 2000s. I never see this wad randomly played, and there is good reason for that. The unfortunate bit is there isn't much I can compare it to for domination; I can only judge it on how it played out. The closeness of spawns to domination points, some unclear paths, BFG placements that really are unnecessary, and lack of smooth play really kills most of the maps in the pack. But I'm pretty sure domination doesn't have to be this bad. I chalk up the problems in this wad to poor leadership and no real care given to the maps or game mode, and as a result we get another subpar speedmap pack nobody will play more than once, but perhaps more tragically lost potential for a hardly-played game mode. The philosophy of "people play anything" needs to be ding-dong-ditched, because this isn't 1995 anymore; it's 2017 and people play next to nothing, so making subpar maps isn't an option. Mogor's Winter - Shadowman Doom 2 - Single Player - PrBoom+ - 6.05 MB - Reviewed by: Not Jabba If the name Mogor sounds weirdly familiar to you, you may be remembering it from Whitemare 1, where Mogor appears in one of the secret levels as a cartoonish boss monster that shoots streams of Cacodemon balls. Other than that, I have no idea what kind of backstory there is to this character. Apparently he isn't really dead though, because he's come back to steal New Year's, and you can only stop him by beating this 11-level mapset. The style of these maps is fairly typical of Shadowman and some of the other mappers who have participated in various Russian community projects. The levels mostly take place in snow-covered cities with gritty texturing, and there are realistic houses and shops with realistic boxiness and lots of pictures hanging up on the walls, faucets in the kitchens, and so on. The mapset sometimes gets kind of jokewadish (particularly in the music selections, some of which are really annoying), but it's not a jokewad. You get the sense that Shadowman just made these maps for the fun of it and wasn't trying too hard to impress anyone. If you can look past some of the flaws that show up early on and give a bad impression, Mogor's Winter is a pretty solid set of maps -- at least, if you enjoy these sorts of city maps where it's mostly about exploring every corner and fighting from room to room. The maps build up slowly with a strong sense of progression, and the SSG and plasma rifle (along with most of the powerful monsters) show up pretty late. The steady straightforwardness of the combat and the rambling, mazey nature of many of the levels reminded me of '90s dungeon crawlers and Doom wannabe FPS games, but fortunately I have a lot of nostalgia for stuff like that. My favorite level was map 04, which takes place in a big mansion with a hedge maze surrounding it; it has some interesting puzzly stuff and is the best example of that dungeon crawler style. Maps 06 and 09 also stand out in that they're more like conventional Doom maps, with larger combat spaces and more fluid layouts that emphasize gameplay. You also get to play the obligatory moving train level somewhere in there. You do get to fight Mogor again at the end, and this time he's basically a glorified Arch-Vile with sprites ripped from the final boss of Blood. Maybe he got a makeover after the last time you killed him. Like the rest of the story, it doesn't make a lot of sense, but whatever. With all the epic mapsets that get released these days, it's easy to forget that stuff like Mogor's Winter can still be fun in its way -- although for some people, it may not be. I got annoyed with the switch hunting at times and turned off the music in a few maps, but otherwise I got some decent enjoyment out of it. Recommended mainly for nostalgia Doomers and people who are looking for casual mapsets. The /newstuff Chronicles is a usually-weekly roundup of new items uploaded to the /idgames archive, and it is written entirely by community members like you. If you wish to contribute, the /newstuff Review Center is the place to do so. Register on the Doomworld Forums first if you don't already have an account, because you need one to submit reviews. Special thanks goes to the nearly 300 users who have submitted reviews over the past several years.
  15. Miasma - Thomas "tourniquet" Seifert Doom 2 - Single Player - Boom Compatible - 2.42 MB - Reviewed by: Nine Inch Heels Miasma was uploaded to the archives on December 16th, 2016. I don't feel comfortable calling it a "map", because, more than anything, Miasma is a place so alien and malicious, within a few minutes it will make you realize you are unwelcome in its presence. In Greek mythology, a miasma is a contagious force with an independent life of its own. This wonderfully detailed and disturbingly abstract environment is dominated by the color green, yet it combines many different themes, which flow into one another seamlessly as the player peels back Miasma's many layers during exploration. This... place is huge. Oppressive open areas and treacherous tight quarters await the brave, keeping them alert at all times, and making them feel weak and fragile. Miasma is as much a piece of art and ingenuity as it is about gameplay variety. If there was something like "the everything map", Miasma more than deserves to be considered as such. Tourniquet managed to constantly mix up the gameplay in this non-linear microcosm: from exploration to close quarters combat to slaughter, all of which is delivered with many brilliantly executed and varied nuances. No encounter feels like the previous one, adding even more to the impression that this place is looking to get rid of you by any means necessary. That's not to say the map plays unfair. On the contrary, there is a reliable solution for everything here. However, if you want to see everything this green behemoth has on offer, I suggest saving your progress occasionally during your first, or maybe even second playthrough, in particular when playing on UV difficulty. Miasma can take well over 30 minutes to finish, even for quite experienced players, and dying 20 minutes into the map to then start it all over again may be unpleasant. Encounter design throughout the map is consistently at high quality. Nicely orchestrated small encounters with impeccable thing placement create about as much psychological pressure as the relatively large scale encounters which take place in the the deepest bowels of this festering abomination. The pacing is top notch every time; nothing ever feels boring, tedious, or uninteresting, let alone trivial. When it comes to resources, you will be kept on a relatively short leash. Matching the visual theme of the map, players are going be limited to green armor for significant periods of time. When you get hit, it will hurt. In spite of the relatively low Archvile/Cyberdemon count when compared to other maps with roughly 1000-1500 monsters, the opposition is potentially lethal, and mistakes will get punished severely. Tourniquet is reasonably generous with firepower. You will always be given a little bit more than you might need, but never so much as to allow for an overall wasteful or careless play-style. Many encounters, especially early on, but also a bit later down the line, are designed around SSG/RL use and quick thinking paired with a good tactical approach on the player's end. As a consequence of limited resources, the creatively hidden secrets in Miasma are not only meaningful, but they also feel very rewarding to discover. Some secrets require a good eye; others can be found by way of hearing "something" happen. Even after having played many Cacoward-winning megawads, I was more than pleasantly surprised by this astonishing masterpiece. It is one of the best Dooming experiences I have had. Infested Outpost - Cacodemon9000 Doom 2 - Single Player - Limit Removing - 1.5 MB - Reviewed by: geo Infested Outpost is a sea of grey, cement, dark tunnels all wrapped into a near-maddening labyrinth. It starts out enjoyable enough, a fair amount of health, ammo and challenge. Enough ammo to have you switching weapons until you find the armory. Health is abundant in key locations that you'll return to again and again. The key here is again-and-again. Wow this is a tangled web of a complex. All three keys are used, naturally, but there are color coated switch doors as well. Green to green, yellow to yellow. I was lost and confused backtracking to the very beginning of the level to discover the room of switches that I had walked by without noticing. To unlock that bank of two switches, I had to stumble my way through a pitch black theater that was darker than any Duke Nukem theater. Getting lost in a dark room was only the tip of the iceberg, as there is a network of dark tunnels around big rooms. These tunnels are at 45 degree angles and there are lights at select moments, but it was more of a nuisance than a moment of dread. There are chaingunners, imps and barons to fight in these close quarters with little room to strafe. Another issue with these dark tunnels is that its tough to discern one tunnel from the next without your trusty map. Oh but it's tough to navigate even with a map, because these tunnels have ladders that work as silent teleporters to different sections of the map. So there was no clear cut way to find a route via the map when looking at the tunnels. This would be fine if you didn't have to back track through them so often. I got the blue key and it was next to a switch that required a yellow key, which meant I'd have to trek through the tunnels another time. What I failed to mention is the fact that blue key needs to be used on a blue key switch somewhere else in the tunnels. Outside these menacing tunnels are big storage rooms where a lot of the action happens. In each of these large warehouses is a slew of imps, barons, and chaingunners. As we all know the chaingunners can snipe you from across a room with no real sense of where it's coming from. To the level's credit there is always cover, just know where you're getting shot from. To make things both more detailed and frustrating, there were half doors. Doors that were stuck half open, so you could see beneath them, but they never open. So when looking at a map to see oh there's a red door I haven't gone in; the trick was these doors are jammed half open and can't be opened even if at times you could still get to the other side. Another detriment is just how grey it is. I could still tell one room from the next, and a lot of rooms had good detail and interesting concepts, but it's still a lot of grey on grey punctuated with blue fabrics in the occasional living quarters and boxes... lots of boxes. Speaking of boxes, this is a vanilla DOOM 2 WAD so there's no jump. The red key requires some intense accuracy running off a box and landing on another, but only after taking a long route up a bunch of crates and over two other gaps. After ten tries, I gave up, cheated and jumped. I should also specify that this WAD was meant to use the embedded DeHackEd file, so perhaps that would have given me some sort of run ability not native to the vanilla version. On the good side of the map, it feels like it could be a real outpost. There are barracks, a morgue, the movie theater and so on. There are a few moments it felt like the map design was inspired both by Duke as I mentioned before, but also a bit like Doom 3 with large trafficking tunnels that have walkways and stairs on both sides. If you're someone that likes intense puzzles, this is for you, but as I went further into the rabbit hole, it only ended in anguish. DAR's DOOM Marathon - Davester2296, uploaded by Mr. Chris Doom/Doom 2 - N/A - OGG Support - 212.54 MB Reviewed by: geo How do you review an entire recreation of both Doom and Doom 2's soundtracks? You play both games back to back... or you just listen to each level using cheats to skip map to map. Both soundtracks are great and it's tough to disagree with a pack that has two game soundtrack replacements in it. The first soundtrack is more metal with a nice balance of synthetic without deviating from the original songs too much. Who would have imagined a soundtrack covering metal songs would get covered by metal? The guitars are bigger and more pronounced, but other things are more subtle and menacing. There is also a good deal of variety to make each song different from what could have been a strict metal recreation. Half the songs are metal with walls of guitars, while the other half is more creative to stand out. To buffer the intense metal of the first album, there are synthetic symphonies, creepy, and dare I say other-worldly songs. Some things begin more sedate and harmonic before punching you in the face with guitars. There is definitely a contrast between the first and second game soundtracks as if different instruments were used. The drums and guitars both sound different and there is less use of synthetic sound. The second game sounds far more mellow and symphonic compared to the big metal of the first. The guitar riffs sound more subdued than skull crushing. Maybe that's just how it always was, less intense than the original game. If you need a fresh pack of the familiar chords and beats to blow holes in monsters, this is your pack. Doom Project Version 1.1 - Guy M. Babin Doom/Doom 2 - N/A - OGG Support - 161.78 MB Reviewed by: geo This is Doom Project Version 1.1, but what is it? Could it be remaking Doom 1? Could it be someone's first level? No... It's a techno and/or dance music pack that replaces the music of Knee Deep in the Dead inspired from Unreal Tournament 3. Would you have ever guessed that from the title? Nope. The bottom line of this or any music replacement soundtrack isn't how good or bad it is, but does it fit the game? In this case, that's a big no. Perhaps I've been brainwashed over two decades into thinking Doom is about metal, guitars, and ambience rather than synthetic beats. The only song that comes close to fitting in tone is E1M4, as it has a good, consistent beat from start to finish. In fact I think video game music has to hook you in within the first few chords for it to affect you, otherwise it turns into bland and run of the mill. The songs have nothing to grab my attention, and maybe that's the genre as a whole. Even if well done, this pack might as well have just been taxi cabs honking in traffic and I would have felt the same. Maybe the music just never energized me the same way the original soundtrack did in its humble midi form. It may have fit Doom better if it had been inspired by the game rather than Unreal Tournament 3. By that logic, there needs to be more Mega Man inspired music in Doom. Most people agree that Mega Man has some of the greatest video game music of all time, but "does it fit the blood soaked halls and zombie bellows of Doom?" Maybe if you're into the music's genre you'll appreciate it more than I did, but after 35 minutes of hearing it, I will never listen to it again. Shovelware Adventure! - Doomkid (Doomkid92 on steam) Doom 2 - Single Player - Vanilla - 2.28 MB - Reviewed by: Not Jabba Shovelware Adventure is a throwback to the early days of Doom, when you could get away with raking up a bunch of other people's random crap levels and throwing them onto a CD to sell commercially. It doesn't actually play like a shovelware map, fortunately. Instead, it's more about having a cheesy retro feel and a very simple but high-quality design. The detailing is pretty spartan and I don't think there are any custom textures, but there's plenty of fun new content to help keep it interesting, mostly in terms of monsters and decorations. Besides the recolors and reskins, some of the new monsters include a spectral Imp and a plasma-shooting zombie with Duke sunglasses. These sorts of monsters don't create new gameplay, but they do contribute to the overall sense of variety and light-hearted fun, so I think they serve this map well. Two monsters that I do think add something new to the game are a tougher Imp with a faster double fireball attack and a zombie that fires homing missiles. Both of them take more damage than you expect and are unlikely to flinch, but their seeming weakness makes it very tempting to get cocky and face them out in the open with the assumption that you can stun-lock them or kill them very quickly, exposing you to some pretty dangerous attacks. There's also a nice custom music track that fits well with the retro feel of the map. The level is very large and very open for exploration; it includes three keycards, but you don't even need all of them to win, and they're mostly used for opening up more optional areas where you can get better equipment. I never got tired of running around trying to find everything. Enemies are packed in pretty densely, but since most of them are weak, the map isn't too hard, as long as you can survive the occasional packs of hitscanners. I love this sort of gameplay, where there are tons of mostly low-tier monsters, so you're always mowing something down. The finale is a challenge, throwing you into the middle of an monster spawner battle and forcing you to clear a Spider Mastermind and a Cyberdemon out of the way before you can get into position to destroy the source (not too hard or annoying as far as IoS fights go, but it did catch me by surprise). Shovelware Adventure might be too quirky for some players, but I highly recommend it. Superfast Mapping: Domination Edition - Combinebobnt, Argentum, Dranzer, [IFOC]75, Razgriz/Strangle, Gustavo6046 Doom 2 - Domination - Zandronum - 15.79 MB - Reviewed by: Decay Domination is a team game mode that Zandronum features. The aim of the game is earning points by "owning" a sector for extended periods of time. A player "owns" a sector for their team by walking over a line that recognizes their team colour and then assigns the sector to the team. Very few map packs have been made for this mode. CombinebobNT led this project after authoring Superfast DM, CTF, and Duel. None of these wads get played and are of dubious quality, and you would think after two wads you would give it up, but Bobby doesn't take hints very well. This wad is an example of a horrendous philosophy of "Doom players play anything with enough people." I don't think quality control existed in this project. The floors are quite bumpy all over the place, particularly in high traffic areas, even more specifically many of the domination points themselves. It's not really a great idea. Some areas are too tight where they shouldn't be, and others are way too open where they could probably stand for some more cover. Many recurring problems in this set could be fixed with testing, but I feel like nobody cared because SPEED MAPS. Many of maps have a good flow, if you were running around in single player that is. The maps feature 3-D floors in general game play use instead of decoration, and fit in really well, adding a good vertical dimension to the maps, boosting general movement flow. There are only a few real dead-end feeling spots in maps or areas that require excessive run-around. I feel like these maps would play better in straightforward DM. In many instances spawns are so close to the domination points, you don't have much opportunity to defend it in any reasonably sized game. It's a constant barrage of death with a little bit of "walk over the sector lines" thrown in. Bob will read this and say to me "Decay that's the point" or "That's a good thing!" but approximately not one of these people enjoyed the maps, so perhaps that's saying something. Even for public play the disorganization reaches disastrous levels, particularly in maps that look the same everywhere. The point names are lazily thrown in with no creativity (hallmark of a speedpack?), leaving some people maybe wondering where exactly the top, middle, and bottom points are. The maps are mostly clean, coherent, and smooth on the walls, which usually translates into reasonable maps visually, but instead many maps suffer from being overly plain and boring. Some of the map themes come straight out of AeonDM (made by some of the same authors) but look like low-budget, D-grade movie versions of them. The wad, suitably for speedmaps, looks like a ZDaemon hand-me-down for Zandronum from the mid 2000s. I never see this wad randomly played, and there is good reason for that. The unfortunate bit is there isn't much I can compare it to for domination; I can only judge it on how it played out. The closeness of spawns to domination points, some unclear paths, BFG placements that really are unnecessary, and lack of smooth play really kills most of the maps in the pack. But I'm pretty sure domination doesn't have to be this bad. I chalk up the problems in this wad to poor leadership and no real care given to the maps or game mode, and as a result we get another subpar speedmap pack nobody will play more than once, but perhaps more tragically lost potential for a hardly-played game mode. The philosophy of "people play anything" needs to be ding-dong-ditched, because this isn't 1995 anymore; it's 2017 and people play next to nothing, so making subpar maps isn't an option. Mogor's Winter - Shadowman Doom 2 - Single Player - PrBoom+ - 6.05 MB - Reviewed by: Not Jabba If the name Mogor sounds weirdly familiar to you, you may be remembering it from Whitemare 1, where Mogor appears in one of the secret levels as a cartoonish boss monster that shoots streams of Cacodemon balls. Other than that, I have no idea what kind of backstory there is to this character. Apparently he isn't really dead though, because he's come back to steal New Year's, and you can only stop him by beating this 11-level mapset. The style of these maps is fairly typical of Shadowman and some of the other mappers who have participated in various Russian community projects. The levels mostly take place in snow-covered cities with gritty texturing, and there are realistic houses and shops with realistic boxiness and lots of pictures hanging up on the walls, faucets in the kitchens, and so on. The mapset sometimes gets kind of jokewadish (particularly in the music selections, some of which are really annoying), but it's not a jokewad. You get the sense that Shadowman just made these maps for the fun of it and wasn't trying too hard to impress anyone. If you can look past some of the flaws that show up early on and give a bad impression, Mogor's Winter is a pretty solid set of maps -- at least, if you enjoy these sorts of city maps where it's mostly about exploring every corner and fighting from room to room. The maps build up slowly with a strong sense of progression, and the SSG and plasma rifle (along with most of the powerful monsters) show up pretty late. The steady straightforwardness of the combat and the rambling, mazey nature of many of the levels reminded me of '90s dungeon crawlers and Doom wannabe FPS games, but fortunately I have a lot of nostalgia for stuff like that. My favorite level was map 04, which takes place in a big mansion with a hedge maze surrounding it; it has some interesting puzzly stuff and is the best example of that dungeon crawler style. Maps 06 and 09 also stand out in that they're more like conventional Doom maps, with larger combat spaces and more fluid layouts that emphasize gameplay. You also get to play the obligatory moving train level somewhere in there. You do get to fight Mogor again at the end, and this time he's basically a glorified Arch-Vile with sprites ripped from the final boss of Blood. Maybe he got a makeover after the last time you killed him. Like the rest of the story, it doesn't make a lot of sense, but whatever. With all the epic mapsets that get released these days, it's easy to forget that stuff like Mogor's Winter can still be fun in its way -- although for some people, it may not be. I got annoyed with the switch hunting at times and turned off the music in a few maps, but otherwise I got some decent enjoyment out of it. Recommended mainly for nostalgia Doomers and people who are looking for casual mapsets. The /newstuff Chronicles is a usually-weekly roundup of new items uploaded to the /idgames archive, and it is written entirely by community members like you. If you wish to contribute, the /newstuff Review Center is the place to do so. Register on the Doomworld Forums first if you don't already have an account, because you need one to submit reviews. Special thanks goes to the nearly 300 users who have submitted reviews over the past several years. 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