Back to Saturn X E1: 1.1.1 released with bugfixes, argh

As far as thematic progression goes, while I'd argue to the death that Get Out Of My Stations has a ton of levels that look, feel, and play completely differently from one another, I can actually understand why some players might be feeling like it didn't have the same sort of thematic progression that would usually be expected with mapsets of this length. This shareware episode only accounts for the first third of BTSX's whole story, though, so there's a lot more to see in the remaining two episodes :)

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Can a standard vanilla wad hold 60+ maps or is it going to be three wads for three episodes?

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TheMionicDonut said:

Can a standard vanilla wad hold 60+ maps or is it going to be three wads for three episodes?


Three separate WADs

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TheMionicDonut said:

Can a standard vanilla wad hold 60+ maps or is it going to be three wads for three episodes?


Vanilla Doom can read up to 35 maps. However there is no way of getting to 33-35 without the level warp cheat and the intermission screens for them will crash.

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printz said:

Weird. Does it have something to do with wrong HELP lump? Doom vs Doom 2.


It's the menu arrow. just dont press F1 ok? :3

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That issue is a very odd one. We're planning on looking into it before there's a final release, and hopefully it can be fixed without making sacrifices to ptoing's menu graphics.

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esselfortium said:

As far as thematic progression goes, while I'd argue to the death that Get Out Of My Stations has a ton of levels that look, feel, and play completely differently from one another, I can actually understand why some players might be feeling like it didn't have the same sort of thematic progression that would usually be expected with mapsets of this length. This shareware episode only accounts for the first third of BTSX's whole story, though, so there's a lot more to see in the remaining two episodes :)


Wait I expect thematic progression from my mapsets? Huh well I guess I can never play Plutonia, Plutonia 2, and Plutonia Revisited ever again since they all pretty much "look the same" and you could just combine PL, PL2, and PRCP to make a 96-level long episode.

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I do think many of the maps are unique, but at the same time very similar in varying degrees.

The ways the maps are different are that despite there being a pretty powerful sense of quality control which unites all the maps in a single episode, quite a few maps have very different characteristics in their level design. I can't remember the mapnumbers (or the mapnames) off the top of my head, but there's one map early in the wad I really liked because of all the curved lines and height variation. It's the one with the plasma gun secret in the starting area, and the wide and thin crushing doors. A lot of the mappers have different styles, some maps are fast and linear, some reuse the same arenas for different battles, some maps are very dynamic, and some maps are very specially detailed.

However, the ways the maps all feel the same has a lot to do with the mappers not really knowing what place their map was gonna land in, (which is common in community projects, especially 1024s, community chests, plutonias, and even DTWiD,) so a lot of maps start with the shotgun and some shells at a short distance, and fighting a lot of low level monsters, and progressing onto harder battles with better weapons as you move on. This makes the maps all feel rather indistinguishable from one another as far as gameplay goes. (Still yet, you get what you pay for for downloading an episode that is quite literally named "Get out of my Stations" -- expecting anything other than standard techbases is a little dumb) Despite changing texture themes in the following episodes, a wad with obvious thematic progression also needs a number of "signature" maps too. In the Doom IWADs, this is the crate maze map, the chainsaw secret map, the boss battle map, the slaughter map, the giant crusher map, the barrels everywhere map, the sandbox map, etc. (Containment area; Nuclear Plant; Dead Simple; The Suburbs; The Crusher; Barrels o fun; Industrial Zone)

Of course you would probably want to employ your own map themes too, like a cyberdreams map or a "berserk punch everything to death" map or some other characteristic. If you go back and skip around through the levels, you very rarely start it thinking "oh this is the -something- map." unless of course you know the mapper by name and recognize his individual mapping traits. It makes the whole thing feel like a REALLY dragged out Knee-Deep in the Dead. That's not really a bad thing because they are all pretty fucking great maps. But I think that's what Vermil is feeling in regards to lack of thematic progression.

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Though I'd argue that E1 does have a bunch of distinct gameplay/layout styles and the sorts of specialized concept levels you're describing (MAP02 as the rocketlauncher blastfest, MAP05 as the wide-open 'racetrack' map, MAP07 as the spiderdemons map, etc.), you'll find a lot more of that sort of thing in E2 and E3. :)

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to be more specific, the italics list in 40oz's post made a few people in the irc channel go "where did he get the e2 alpha?!"

there's enough variability in e1 if you look close enough, but a techbase is a techbase, i guess. btsx e1: 101 modern recipes for cooking techbase.

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I think the resource wad of mystery has been a big influence in the number of maps made - I mean, besides Essel cracking the whip and all.

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Thats good to hear that E2 will be a little more diverse. I'm not surprised being as though Ultimate Doom's E2 seems kinda like the "do whatever you want" episode. Even if it doesn't make any sense.

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Enjoying this wad very much. The levels have a Quake 2 feel to them, IMO. Great job to all who worked on this.

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http://i.imgur.com/wb60x.png

There, played through the whole thing, first five 5 maps with zdoom and the rest with brutal doom. very solid set of maps with great level design, both gameplay-wise and visually. The finale being a very epic map.

This thing actually worked pretty well with Brutal Doom if someone's interested in playing it with that. There's only this one map that has a jump you can't make with the slowed down speed and the Metal Mothers map being a bit unfair with the buffed masterminds. and some other very minor issues. The difficulty was just about perfect for my skills with it on UV.

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Onto MAP05 so far. I enjoyed the first 4 but level 5 is not my thing so have broken off here for a bit. Unarguably fantastic aesthetically so far though, even if some of the textures don't quite feel Doomy to me.

BTW, are the terrible map names a private joke or some sort of peverse contest?

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purist said:

BTW, are the terrible map names a private joke or some sort of peverse contest?

I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about.

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purist said:

Onto MAP05 so far. I enjoyed the first 4 but level 5 is not my thing so have broken off here for a bit. Unarguably fantastic aesthetically so far though, even if some of the textures don't quite feel Doomy to me.

BTW, are the terrible map names a private joke or some sort of peverse contest?


Yeah, I've been expecting MAP05 to be fairly dividing as it is rather linear when compared to the rest of the mapset. I designed it so that the player would be constantly on the move, rather than peaking around corners and treading lightly. Dew has described it as being somewhat like a racetrack, in that the level guides the player quickly around in a loop to the final showdown. To me, the action in it is sort of like a rail shooter, where barrel kills are intended to take out most of the early monsters while you get a move on. Anyways, sorry to hear you're not into it! Definitely not everyone's taste and I'm alright with that. :)

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Episode I released? Are we expecting more of these in the future?

Played the first five maps and I have to say that I enjoyed Map01 the most.

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TimeOfDeath said:

FDAs for 23 and 31, still on version 099d.


looks like maybe the 23+ is actually map 1 on, yes?

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Finished the whole thing. Map 23 was very impressive, especially the big fight and the ending. (Amazing to see the latter in vanilla doom) and I liked how it seemed to be a fusion of the familiar techbase style of the rest of the game as well as introduce some of the gothic textures from the next episode.

Maps 15 and 19 were also some of my favorites, the former for its massive size and detail and the latter for its style and mostly underground theme. Not a dud map in the bunch in my opinion.

I look forward to the next episode's release!

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NaturalTvventy said:

looks like maybe the 23+ is actually map 1 on, yes?

oops, I guess I renamed the wrong file, and the real 23 fda is overwritten now. I made it to the part with all the teleporting monsters but the cybers killed me.

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Worked my way up to MAP15. Loved every moment thus far.

Personally I don't have any grievance with the thematic sameness of the maps; I'm enjoying myself far too much for it to be an issue. Besides, there's plenty of subtle variation if you look hard enough.

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This was a very fun project to work on. The resource wad is a mapper's dream.

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purist said:

BTW, are the terrible map names a private joke or some sort of peverse contest?

I think they were just trying to be different than all the other kids on the playground.

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purist said:

BTW, are the terrible map names a private joke or some sort of peverse contest?


It actually was a perverse contest, essel would always get hot and bothered whenever names like "Big Chief Chinese Restaurant", and "Some Drilling Implied" would come up...

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purist said:

terrible map names


I'm surrounded by philistines!

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Sorry, to me some sound quirky or even silly for such an otherwise meticulously crafted work.

E.g.

Big Chief Chinese Restaurant
Cyclone Utilities (Remember Your Birthday)
U.S. Mustard Company

Granted, I haven't played any of these. Maybe that's why they come across as half assed.

I didn't mean to make a big deal about it. Small details.

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They sound like Melvins song titles, random words or phrases that have no connection to the material itself. If you haven't played them yet then I am sorry to let you know that there are no chinese restaurants or mustard companies in the levels ;)

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