05/10/2005 @18:35:49 ^21:39:01

what do you get if you roll three eggs down a hill

the eggs lose gravitational potenSHELL energy and gain kinEGGtic energy


That may be the worst joke I've ever thought up but it's not as bad as having to fight a roomful of mancubi, imps, and spectres, in pitch darkness!

One of the reasons why I've not been writing so many map reviews these past few weeks is because I've only been playing one wad, and I've only just today finished playing it. Armadosia, a 32-map megawad that came out earlier this year but isn't in the archives (unless it's been put in there since a few weeks ago; they're not updating because, well, if you look in /incoming there's a file named "maintainer_lives_in_new_orleans") UPDATE (28/02/2006) Armadosia is now in /idgames

For something made by one author it is the biggest megawad ever. I'm not even joking. Most maps took over 50 minutes game time to finish and several were well over an hour. To put it another way the monster density is mostly around the same as the Doom 2 IWAD maps and most of the maps have over three hundred monsters.

I'm not going to do an individual map review. There's too much of it and they've all sort of blurred together. They're all quite similar; Doom maps are rarely identifiable anyway, I mean what does Doom 2 map 16 have to do with suburbs? However there are some broad trends. Here is a summary of the "typical Armadosia map", a category into which probably 25 of the 32 maps fit.

However not all the maps are like this

The website says Armadosia was tested with Doom Legacy but should work in most ports. I found one incompatibility with PrBoom that stops you being able to finish level 26; there's a room with a switch you need to press where the ceiling is covered in hanging bodies that block your path. Legacy has proper 3d thing clipping so these wouldn't be a problem in it. Also there are enough middle textures (vines, gratings etc) used in spaces with not enough room for them so that they bleed into the floor that suggests to me that Legacy's renderer fixed this bug and clips them to the floor. Also there's a couple of monsters in a trap that never opens on level 28. There's probably other bugs on earlier levels but I can't remember them. To be honest it gets more irritating after map 24 and I don't think those maps have been tested so well.

In summary Armadosia is a gargantuan effort that really deserves to be played but I think it's probably too long and/or annoying for most people to slog through! Much like a reading of this review, then!