06/07/2005 @20:44:58 ^11:14:48

Heroes When people were first putting wads out there was a brief fashion for wad compilations. You'd get a bunch of your favourite maps, put them all in an episode or whatever, possibly slightly edited, and release it. For example there is the WADPAK series, each of which replace all 27 maps in Doom.

Heroes, recently uploaded to /idgames, is another one of these. It was made at a later time than the wadpaks and thus knows about episode 4 so you get 36 maps. They are pretty average, I mean they're not great but they're not bad for the time they were released, anyway. There's a few weird ones, but a few good ones too. Okay I admit it it's been a month or two since I played this so I can't remember too many specifics. I do recall E4M4 has a porno cinema though!

You also get a bunch of replacement sound effects, only one of which - the item pickup sound - I thought was any good. I've definitely heard it before, I think it must be from another game (or at least, in some other wad I've played ages ago.) But, after 36 maps, it grates just as much as the others.

Get the demo pack from the speed demos archive page

Death Tormention 1 and Death Tormention 2 Two full replacements for Episode 4 of the Ultimate Doom. I first played these in about 2001 and recently replayed them. They're not as good as I remembered. The first is kind of bland, but it's easy. I wish it weren't quite so linear though, I don't know, I mean, you do each area and then that's it, it's finished, done with. And what's with the secret exit on E4M6? There's a proper secret exit on E4M2 where it should be, but if you take the one on E4M6 you'll end up having to do 3 4 5 and 6 all over again... E4M8 is the infamous "fortune favours the brave" map. Don't hang back and try to kill the cyberdemon from long range, just charge towards it and hope you survive... You'll see why

The second episode has better looking levels but they're a lot harder. Indeed it contains the infamous map 6 where you have to kill a cyberdemon with your pistol if you start it from scratch. It's not that it's lacking in ammo, well, it is, but it's more that all the ammo is at the end and the monsters are at the start... E4M1 is also severely lacking in ammunition and E4M5 has this cutesy trick on it where you think you're getting a BFG but you kill yourself instead. It is most droll. The author seems to make his maps around the belief that the BFG is the be-all and end-all of desirable acquisitions. Finally there is E4M7 which has more in common with Doom's E3M4 and E2M6 than an episode 4 level. Still, I will recommend these two episodes; I've enjoyed them in the past, and everything I write sounds unduly negative...

Oh yeah before I forget the second one has three secret levels which I must admit I didn't realise existed for a very long time. And then I nearly missed them out of this article! Oh well!