Map05 – Mission Control by Slava Pestov – Kills – 93, Items – 30, Secret – 80. Time 17:54. End Health 110, Armor 77. Death Count - 1
Slava Pestov, the youngest of our teenage terrors, was 13 when he worked on RoC. I don’t recall having any dealings with him, but he’s been among the easiest of the RoC team to follow, because he went on to become a Linux programmer and then developed the Factor programming language, which is apparently something of a big deal. Even at the time, we recognized him as a boy genius. I heard about that mainly from what others said about him, but I was also rather impressed by some of his maps and by his industriousness. Including his secret Map32, Slava did 7 maps for RoC, although this version of RoC only has 6. This is because, as can be seen in some of his maps, he tended to be heavily inspired by E1 themes, and in the original Map06, he cleaved very closely to E1M9. So closely, in fact, that Ty Halderman said it had to go. As a result, my map, Splatterhouse, was substituted. I’m hoping that I still have a copy of the original RoC on an old Mac HD, because all I have on my PC is version 1.4. I'd love to take a look at the original Map06
A few years ago, I read something of Slava’s, whether at his older website or in an interview, where he mentioned Realm of Chaos as something he did “with random guys on the internet,” or words to that effect. I found it amusing. ;D
This map is trivially easy for continuous players, and not very difficult for pistol-starters, either. 3 blasts of the SSG was all I needed to clear the pack of Sergeants at the beginning. The secret shotgun on the crates relies on the player catching on to the idea that crates are actually lifts, not an idea I’ve ever cared for, even though it’s used often enough. This idea is repeated when we see the Computer Map on top of crates, but before this, we’ve had a painfully long wait for a floor to descend. This is not the only painfully long wait we’ll see in this megawad, including what some jagoff did at the end of Map23. God only knows who that idiot is, but if I ever find him . . . ;D
I remember when I first encountered Slava’s multilevel lift. I was really quite impressed. DoTW says it’s a classic PWAD motif, but I don’t think I’d ever encountered it before, and I can’t think of another map I’ve played with one of these things. The structure lends itself to having fun with Chaingunners and Revvies, but Slava chose much weaker critters
One reason I mentioned IWAD Map15’s asinine platform jump is because this map has the same irritating feature. When you’re going for the blue key, the nukage pit below you has one Berserk and one Radsuit, each on its own short column way below you. Neither one is necessary, but like an idiot, I decided to go for the Zerk, and that led to my only death when I missed, got cornered a moment by Spectres, and then had a short meeting with the Chaingunner at low health.
I feel I should mention the lighting. Watching Alfonzo’s playthrough, I was surprised when he snickered at the directional lighting in Sector 55, first, because directional lighting is valid, and second, because the light source was the light on the SPCdoor2. Admittedly, it’s funny when the light sector stays bright when the door – and it’s light – are in the ceiling. What I thought was really funny was to have that bright light in a room where the whole ceiling is Tlite6_5. ;D
The giant open area before getting to the SpiderQueen’s lair was really boring to look at, and the SpiderQueen’s lair wasn’t much better. I chose not to kill the SpiderQueen, and the amazing thing to me was that even though she was awakened, she never opened fire! That was weird.
I’ve decided to stop calling the Stargr1 platform “The Pestov Structure.” DoTW’s “The Pestov Platform” is much better. We see it here in SpiderQueen’s lair, and God help us, we’re going to see lots more of it. :D
None of the fights were memorable to me, making this an okey-doke map. I even stuck around a little at the end because the teleporting Sergeants trickled in so slowly that I wanted to see how many would show up.
This is certainly not a great map, but in spite of its boxiness, it’s better-looking than Jim Bagrow’s Map04. But again I find myself agreeing with DoTW – I liked Ma04 better. It had That Fucking Archvile Room, and it was hard, and Doom is about having a hard time, and I didn’t have anything close to a hard time in Map05. Slava did better maps than this, but as I think back on them, most were kind of gimmicky and derivative. Map05 is clean and relatively inoffensive, in spite of weird shit like having an arrow on the floor pointing at a pipe meter that’s actually a lift control switch. Why not just have a switch? But Slava was skilled and knew his Doom mechanics pretty well. This map is nothing great, but it didn’t bother me.