NOVA: The Birth - v1.1 release now on idGames!

Paul D said:

regarding this midi:

This tune is really cool and sets a very foreboding atmosphere, I really like it. I really like what you've done with the drums, it really livens up the tune.
I was mucking around with it, changing instruments and a note here or there just for fun, and I think it would work really well with a distortion guitar one octave lower to perhaps replace the harpsichord. The harpsichord just feels a little "weak" to me, not sure how to describe it exactly.

What do you think?

I tried but didn't like the distortion guitar, I replaced the harpsichord with bells, the strings with choir aahs and lowered the volume of the acoustic a bit it should be better overall
http://www.mediafire.com/?bio318ub6x209h2

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dobugabumaru said: Brings us to a whopping 32 maps (if Flesh joins, 33). Gentlemen, I think we might be release a full megawad soon.


Make that 34. You left out Sensorium which I plan on bringing to a finish this week.

Anyone up for Nova II once this is finished? I'm getting a bit excited =) I've never released anything to idgames before this so to lead an entire megawad project most of the way is pretty huge for me, especially given the length of time that has elapsed since it began.

[PS. Just emailed fiend-o-hell about Map30: Extorta Nova and the things that need to be fixed about it. Hopefully he'll be back here soon to give some answers]

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Yay :P

Let's focus on finishing this first though. Getting it all perfect might take a few weeks or so extra after we got all the maps done.

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speaking of finishing...

I have finished a V2 version of incubator, I do believe it is still up for improving but I would like to hear what you guys think needs improving, so far I started to add more detail, made areas more monster accessible, cut down on monster count, added more health and ammo, changed weapons room to something else, added traps, added a secret room thats not tagged as a secret and kept the main monster boss theme as revies as well as some changes I forgot about.

download: http://www.mediafire.com/?x1y5xf3bthsy4th

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I'd be up for a Nova 2 but am still struggling with the "Hush" map for Nova 1. I am a bit overcommitted at the moment. Still expecting to get it finished though - maybe it would work better as a secret map as the gameplay is definitely non-standard.

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ok, version 3 of incubator is done and this look like its to be the final version, after playing I found numerous bugs that are now fixed in this version.

ammo is good, health is good, enemies are good, traps are good and the secret is good.

this map is all set to be added to the wad:

http://www.mediafire.com/?70st888o0n91vxb

also its good to know I am not the only one looking forward to a second go :P

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I played through Incubator v3. What I like about it is that the architecture is very boxy. There's always nooks and crannies to explore and you'd be surprised at how much little things like the sunken blue pathways at the top of the map add to the overall atmosphere. That and the constant variance of wall textures (while still staying in the same set) do a lot to please the eye. The exit area is nice too, with a smattering of corpses outside the facility to provide an ominous warning to moving on to the next map.

Gameplay-wise is a mixed bag (speaking of UV of course). The start is really bumpy, forcing the player to make every shot count as there are dense amount of baddies on the way to pick up the blue key. Plus, the revenants in that room are especially devious since it's so small that the player is likely to eat one of their homing missiles quite easily. While that's not necessarily a bad thing, it is problematic because it's the hardest room on the map by far, with the difficulty sloping down significantly towards the end (from about the red key onwards).

We still haven't worked out map progression yet, so it's hard to say whether or not to make the rest of the level harder or the starting area easier. You should at least throw in one more series of shotgun shells in the blue key area, as one misfire would've meant I had to start punching my way through them.

The opening room (past the room where the player starts) is also a bit hectic since there's so much going on, and the height difference leads to some awkward fights with the baron and troops below (especially if the player tries ro run behind the four former humans and will get stuck by the infinite height of the sergeant). Personally I don't like the baron or rev down below, and would rather see a HK down there (and take out the pinkie since he can literally do nothing).

Another thing is that you have a LOT of armor in this map: three green and one blue. Considering that there's barely enough health to survive whittling one green armor down to zero, I'd take out the middle two and change the blue one to a green for those exploring until the end. I'm unsure too if the exit should be easily ran to... it's a neat idea, rewarding the player for exploring the rest of the complex, but feels somewhat unsatisfying to basically have the manc battle be the last big one of the map (if you're skipping the supercharge).

One of the biggest things to note is that practice makes perfect, and you shouldn't see these critiques as "everything wrong with my map"; it's a learning experience and everything I'm offering is seen from my perspective.

EvilNed said:

Who wants to take the secret maps?


I've reserved MAP31, and we have enough maps that we could easily find one to fit into 32.

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ok, thanks for the advice and review,
I might make a V4 as messing around in doombuilder has revealed some very interesting things I can do with the map, I.E making entire corridors open to one another as some sort of huge trap, using unpegged walls as false walls that you can go through, the "pinky sandwich" trick and many more things. also I peronaly think the shotgun does need more ammo in the map, I kept running low at key points where it is needed.

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mrthejoshmon said:

ok, thanks for the advice and review,
I might make a V4 as messing around in doombuilder has revealed some very interesting things I can do with the map, I.E making entire corridors open to one another as some sort of huge trap, using unpegged walls as false walls that you can go through, the "pinky sandwich" trick and many more things. also I peronaly think the shotgun does need more ammo in the map, I kept running low at key points where it is needed.


I'd also mention that the lighting is quite uniform throughout the map, maybe have a bit more variation, some darker areas. I don't think there is any room darker than 160. For example you can add depth to stuff like repetitive corridors by varying the lighting, here i've made a couple of corners darker by adding a few sectors and dropping the brightness a step at a time:

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To reiterate, I'm thinking my map Hush might be good for map 32 as its playing style is unorthodox and you don't have to fight anyone. I am a short time away from a playable alpha.

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Made some more progress on Sensorium just now. I've now finished the essential detailing in the last unfinished room which was present in the alpha I released awhile back (it was the room with the deep, inescapable pits which are now platforms), and I have also upscaled the map a fair bit as all the extra detail was starting to make some of the tighter places look cramped. Once I finish correcting the errors caused by the upscaling I can start to work the map into a playable level and then fiddle with monster/item placements and balancing of gameplay. Then I should finally be finished. Well enough for the level to be included in the final release of Nova, that is, there's always going to be more ideas if I just keep fiddling with it, which is why it's been hard to get Sensorium finished cause the more detail I put in, the more inspired I get to throw in even more ideas and the more the less memorable rooms have to live up to the best ones etc, etc. I think I'm finally seeing this map through to completion now.

After all that's done though, I've still got Sacrament of Wilderness to go which was meant to be another huge level based on a simpler map by Processingcontrol. I think I'll have to leave that until Nova 2 though. Oh joy, more mapping insanity :P

Edit: And to think I was going to do another major overhaul on Hazard Facility... I guess that level will have to be left how it is now unless there is an absolutely HUGE complaint about it.

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I just spent a couple hours or so working on Castle Bloodletting. I added the first part of a new area and made a lot of tweaks to existing areas to make the map more balanced. If I keep up this pace, I think I can get this map done in time for it to be included, if it makes the cut, that is!

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almost done with my map, enemy changes, lighting changes pick up changes and I came up with deciding types of sectors (like having dark sector because there is no light sources, bright sectors with plenty light in them)
http://i.imgur.com/41oFwyY.png?1

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Arjak said:

I just spent a couple hours or so working on Castle Bloodletting. I added the first part of a new area and made a lot of tweaks to existing areas to make the map more balanced. If I keep up this pace, I think I can get this map done in time for it to be included, if it makes the cut, that is!


Unless others have differing opinions on which levels should make the final release of the project, it would have to be a very shoddy, underdone level not to make the cut, otherwise everything is going to be included.

As far as I'm thinking, once we reach 32 levels, we'll halt submissions for awhile and focus on things like midis, making sure each level has difficulty settings, implementing deathmatch/cooperative stuff for each level, as well as a title pic for the wad, custom skies and whatever other stuff we could do to polish the wad up and once that's done, I'll open the Nova II thread and we can start all over. Would that be a good plan? We could fit in a lot of last-minute playtesting during the polishing stages which would probably be wise also.

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kildeth said:

Would that be a good plan?


Uhh yeah, pretty much. Only caveat I'd add is that when we get 32 maps, if we still have some people working on their promised maps (like you or Arjak) I think it could take priority over a few maps, unless more edits are added to them (so far I think Roundtable and River of Blood are the weakest links).

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Working on the new hell map. Bad things will happen here

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mrthejoshmon said:

ok, let me try re-uploading it for you...
And done, I did a few small changes too, nothing major (just a few texture changes in little places, I don't think it needs to be updated, but you can use this version if you wish)
http://www.mediafire.com/?3uq3atuy7ck9vqp


here's a demo if you're into that sort of thing. Pretty fun little map, my only complaint is that a lot of the map is awkward to move around, overly steep stairs, obstructive details (computer panels, hanging decorations that block the player, etc). Also with all those corpses at the end of the map I was expecting a cyb or AV or something, oh'well.

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Ribbiks said:

here's a demo if you're into that sort of thing. Pretty fun little map, my only complaint is that a lot of the map is awkward to move around, overly steep stairs, obstructive details (computer panels, hanging decorations that block the player, etc). Also with all those corpses at the end of the map I was expecting a cyb or AV or something, oh'well.

ok, may I ask how I get demos to work, I would like to watch it.

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On the offchance you use prb+ from command line, it'd be:

./prboom-plus -file Inc_V4.wad -complevel 2 -playdemo incv4_ribk.lmp
I'm stupid when it comes to other ports and such, so hopefully someone can give you a better answer -.-.

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or you can just drag and drop the file on the prboom exe and it should play it (if your wad is in the same folder)

Looks cool with the dark areas, it helps gives the place a more lived in feel. I'll agree with Ribbiks about the awkward navigation, its mainly from the rooms being small so all the furniture and stairs are a bit cramped in places. That might be how you wanted it though so if you think its fine then there you go.

About the ending as well, I also was expecting a big fight when i saw all those bodies. Maybe not a cyberdemon as it feels like an early map, but the end is a bit anticlimactic. I'm assuming the soulsphere room is optional so some people might go straight to the exit and miss a great fight. It would make more sense for the soulsphere to help out with a tough encounter further along, maybe as you decend the steps towards the exit cave bars block the way and enemies ambush you from left and right (and the door back in to the building is locked)... or something else. Up to you though.

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Oh, the dead bodies were an attempt at me creating a battle scene that ended before the player arrived, the marines last stand before the hordes of hell entered and took over the base.

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ah right, thats fair enough. In my mind that kind of thing would work better at the beginning of a map, when you are setting the scene. I think you get a mixed signal because the end of the map is usually when the finale happens, so dead bodies and big dark cave make you think something badass is going to happpen.

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dobugabumaru said:

Uhh yeah, pretty much. Only caveat I'd add is that when we get 32 maps, if we still have some people working on their promised maps (like you or Arjak) I think it could take priority over a few maps, unless more edits are added to them (so far I think Roundtable and River of Blood are the weakest links).


Agreed.

Roundtable is just filler. If we exceed the 32 map limit, I'm OK with it being removed.

However, I´d say that Roundtable and Extorta Nova are the weakest link right now. Extorta Nova shouldt be included in it's current form.

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After months of procrastination, and then spending all of today mapping, testing, tweaking, and sanding the undersides of the drawers (kudos if you get THAT reference!), I am pleased to announce that Castle Bloodletting is in a playable state.

I feel like I've run a marathon. This is definitely my most polished map yet. I've given it everything I have to give. I also feel like this map, in a way, ends my status as a newbie mapper, at least in my own opinion. If Doom mapping was like college, then this is my Final Exam for Year 1.

I hope you all enjoy it as much as I do, because it was a b*tch to make. I've tested the hell out of it, but if you find any problems, let me know, and I'll fix them.

Download Link: http://www.mediafire.com/?5blyoc62cxjj1ma

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Played through it.

It's pretty good, but even with no secrets, there is way too much ammo.

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