Hey, scifista. You certainly speak your mind, don't you? ;D And trust me, I really appreciate it, even though at times I felt like an unruly high school student called to the principal's office for a good scolding. I can just see the enraged principal now, bellowing as he says, "Mr. Duff, you have great potential, yet you continue to submit this terrible, half-assed work, because you refuse to polish it!" ;D
All I can guess is that you've designed these areas, and intentionally refuse to work on them and polish them further. You could, and you knew it, but you didn't. And why? To achieve the Fava Beans resemblance. That's how it feels for me.
But hey, you made some good points, and I listened.
I'm sorry it took me so long to respond, but I wanted to research my records, in case I decided to send you files to disprove your assertion that I held back on polishing because I wanted to retain a Fava Beans feel. If you've kept up with the thread, you probably realize that you had it backwards. These are, for the most part, not new maps in the oldschool style, but are in fact maps from the '90s being updated to more modern standards. This is a relatively difficult thing to do, actually, much moreso than I thought when I started with those paragons of unrefined mapping, my Realm of Chaos maps from 1996. But in doing these weird renovations, I've practically re-invented some of those maps, especially RoIC Map04 (ex Map22 from Realm of Chaos). Map04 has been so heavily modified that it might as well be a new map. In terms of statistics, it has gone from 356 sectors to 1,138, with double the monster count and a difficulty so high on UV that I gave up after 45 deaths in the latest, as yet unposted, version. UV is now pitched to expert players, thanks to the expert players like DoTW and Cynical who tested it. Even HNTR is more difficult than the old UV. I think that map stands as evidence of my polishing. ;)
Shotgun Symphony is a different project, though, not intended for such an extreme difficulty. These maps were also made after RoC, and I thought they were basically more solid and less in need of major surgery. I mainly concentrated on lighting upgrades, extra wall details, and in some cases, more monsters, at least with the maps that were incomplete.
So here's the accounting of when the maps were made. First, the new ones;
E1M7 was made in December 2012.
E1M8 was made in December 2013/January 2014
E1M9 was made in January 2014, in 3.5 days
The old ones;
E1M1 was started in 1997, shortly after I played Jan van Der Veken's classic Dawn of The Dead. The shadowcasting is the giveaway. The map was complete, gameplay and all, in 1999. The only major change has been in the hub area, which before was much larger and more open, because the Cyberdemon you hear as you approach the exit is part of the story, and originally, E1M8 was going to take place in that open hub area, where you'd fight the Cyb and some Barons, and when the Barons died, walls would descend to reveal another 4 Cybs plus 2 Spider Masterminds. Yes, by not posting a story, I made it possible for players to misinterpret that Cyb. I plead guilty!
E1M2 was also started in 1997, IIRC originally as a Doom 2 map, which I converted and finished in 1999.
E1M3 was started in 1997 or 1998 and was basically complete, except for the last 2 secrets, in 1999. That means the yellow key trap is really that old.
E1M4 was probably started in 1998 and was complete up to the red door. Beyond that was just a big empty area. Also missing was the exit path. These parts were constructed beginning in 2011 or so.
E1M5 was started in 1998 and completed up to the big hallway beyond the yellow door in 1999 or 2000. The water room and the metal wall supports were also in there. The "Quake" room, the big nukage area fight, and the exit are new. Worth noting, the gradient lighting in the secret hallways off the pump room dates back to 1999. Yes, it's true! ;)
E1M6 is another 1998 map that was less complete than the others, maybe about 40% done. The entire giant pumping room is new, made in 2013.
I have the files to back me up if you're interested. ;)
Your views have an impact, scifista, and I really thank you for them. When you play maps that were completed long ago, and get accustomed to them over the years, you just accept some things because that's the way they are. Even in RoIC Map04, it was nudging by DoTW, Magnusblitz and Cynical that inspired me to go a little farther than I originally wanted when it comes to improving that map. Unless someone says something, I might believe I'm done when I'm really not. That's why we beta! ;)
There is one issue where I strenuously disagree with you, the idea that Fava Beans is like an average first 199x map. Fava Beans is legendary precisely because, in terms of architecture and lighting, it is equal or superior to the original Knee Deep In The Dead in many ways. And while I agree that the gameplay is lame, in the maps that were more single-player oriented -- E1M5 through E1M7 -- Birkel and Gates produced solid, albeit easy, action. The famous stairway down to the exit area in E1M6, with its fabulous lighting, is something any mapper should hail as a great achievement, especially by mappers working with a balky editor like DEU. So Fava stands with Osiris as one of the truly great mapping achievements of 1995. SteveD has spoken. ;)
BTW, for a look at the kind of thing I do when starting fresh, you can check this thread; http://www.doomworld.com/vb/wads-mo...ap-public-beta/
I hope to see you at my next release, scifista! :)