the candelabra anomaly

This is a fork of the Doom Trivia Thread:
http://www.doomworld.com/vb/post/987269

I happened to be playing E1M7 (Computer Station) today, really immersing myself in the level, until something very odd struck me: it was this lone candelabra tucked away in a corner of the big computer room. It seems very out of place, since everything else on that level follows the high tech base theme. And this candelabra isn't just anywhere on the map, it's in the computer room, the most high-tech location in this high-tech base!

At this point I'm not sure if it was deliberately placed there, or maybe a remnant of an alpha map, or just some random scenery. But it's located in a corner by the window, and is very visible from outside or from another window in an adjacent room.

I was curious to find out where else these things were used in the game, so I did some poking around. I didn't know any tool that would tell me the answer right away, so used the WAD decompiler (part of xwadtools). This method should also work to find other objects if you know their thing type (35 in the case of candelabra).

DOOMWADDIR=. deutex -doom . -levels -xtract doom.wad ; cd levels

for i in *.wad; do wadldc -v -g doom $(echo $i | tr a-z A-Z | sed "s/\.WAD$//") $i $i.map; done

for i in *.map; do perl -ne 'BEGIN{$m = shift} $f=1 if /^\s*THINGS_START/; $f or next; /^\s*35\s+:/ and $c++; END{$c and print "$m : $c\n"}' $i < $i; done


e1m1.wad.map : 2
e1m5.wad.map : 2
e1m6.wad.map : 2
e1m7.wad.map : 1
e1m9.wad.map : 1

e2m2.wad.map : 3
e2m3.wad.map : 2
e2m5.wad.map : 7
e2m6.wad.map : 3

e3m3.wad.map : 2
e3m4.wad.map : 4
e3m5.wad.map : 4

e4m2.wad.map : 2
e4m5.wad.map : 2
e4m6.wad.map : 2

So the totals in episode order are 8, 15, 10, and 6. Well that's strange isn't it? E4 has less candelabras than E1. And you don't have to look very hard to find them either. On E1M1 they frame the exit door...

So what is the reason behind all this? Are they a physical manifestation of hell invading Phobos? But if so, why aren't there also hanging corpses and other weirdness like that? Or is it just the result of an interior decorator with a strange sense of humor?...

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I've always thought the candelbra fits in nicely with the scenery, it doesn't really make sense, but it still looks cool. :)

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at the beginning of the invasion, the UAC were still cleaning the candelabras up after the Halloween party.

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Nope, to me the candelabras show that the UAC personnel were some very classy folk. The skulls themselves appeared later. Everywhere I see candelabras I imagine a neat place to be.

The lone candelabra in E1M7 is VERY easy to detect, and its presence fits greatly with the "Demons on the Prey" soundtrack.

There are fewer candelabras in E4 because E4's theme is depravity, not elegance. Episode 4 is mostly made of barren, random and gory slums, than neat castles (even M6 looks like an improvised outpost of hell).

There are no dead-trees or impaled corpses in E2 because I guess id Software wanted to save some of the features for Episode 3. I hope TSoZD doesn't use them either. Anyway, the impaled bodies look pretty silly, because they look like helpless zombiemen, and the large twisted dead tree is a victim of sprite rendering, just like that episode boss

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Look, they're just.. candelabras. There is no deep reason why they're there. At least I doubt there is, as in Romero going all "hmm, putting these candelabras in strategic locations will imply subversion of reality by the demons".

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I noticed that the candelabras are gold. Maybe the marines struck gold somewhere and the demons just want them to stay out of their mine.

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DoomHero85 said:

I noticed that the candelabras are gold. Maybe the marines struck gold somewhere and the demons just want them to stay out of their mine.


The REAL reason behind Doom's monster invasion, finally explained in layman terms!

I hereby propose this explanation as DoomHero85's permanent custom title.

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Awesome. It's a little long though. How about this?

The UAC are like dwarves. They mine and adventure until they let out demons.

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I never felt that any of the candlebras were out of place, except for the one mentioned. That is the only one that just looks... Out there...

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What? You never seen random candelabras laying around? There's 2 at my house, 3 at my college, and 1 hidden away at the local Game Stop by the mall.

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i never found that candelabra to be any more significant than the ones near the exit of E1M1

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I think this thread is pretty much definitive of an outsider's perception of the Doom community; a bunch of nerds arguing about a candle in an 18 year old video game.

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"I'm not a nerd, nerds are smart, I'm more of a dork!" -Milhouse

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If you draw lines between all the candelabras, cryptic symbols are revealed that show the location of the holy grail.

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You know you've played to much Doom when you question the UAC's choice of décor.

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Doom's version numbering once included the number 666 in it (in v1.666), which is the number of the Beast.

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Is Candelabra the new moon of Mars?

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This is the third thread with mention of The Davinci Code in it within the last couple of weeks.

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I always liked how the Jaguar version gave the E1M1 candelabras their own little alcoves for no apparent reason. (Probably something to do with that version's simplified collision detection.)

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Always thought it was a tad strange myself, but they don't seem terribly out of place because Doom's art direction is so consistent.

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Captain Toenail said:

If you draw lines between all the candelabras, cryptic symbols are revealed that show the location of the holy grail.


See, now that would actually work in Wolf3D, since the nazis were into symbolism and the occult. And in fact, candelabras would fit in quite well with the rest of Wolf3D's decor, amongst the chandeliers, vases, paintings, piles of gold and jewelry, etc. But you don't find any of that stuff on Phobos, just the odd, unexplained candelabra sitting out in the open.

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Well, you see, the UAC was secretly established by a cult dating from the medieval period. This cult was known to dabble with 'black magic' and to 'summon devils' through the use of rituals involving magic circles. Black candles are a key part of this ritual. Obviously despite the UAC's recent technological methods, throwbacks from the old rituals such as candles are still required to enable teleportation. This explains the seemingly unusual placement of candelabras in the modern bases. Ok, I lied, it's all bullshit. :P

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The "black candles" have always looked to me like small electric lamps, especially because they don't animate, but also because of their clean plastic look.

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While we discuss the myteries f the Candlebras, I like the idea of that Phobos was slowly starting to turn towards the growth crap itself. I mean, lets not forget the pentagrams in E1M9 and what I think was E1mM4 or M5 (?). Maybe Phobos was slowly starting to turn like Diemos (Even though Diemos was 'over' Hell...)

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