05/03/2008 @05:19:23 ^07:55:20

So the big news is that there's a sequel to Deus Vult out now.

Deus Vult II (first edition) is apparently part one of a megawad. Here are some random thoughts about it, in no particular order.

First of all you will notice it's a 75 meg download and over twice that unzipped. This is absolutely ridiculous for a Doom wad. There are about a dozen levels in this wad and they mostly all have very, very different styles. I believe it would have been better split up into separate wads just to keep the size down.

Let's expand on this. There's an Asian- and chess-themed forest at night, a bunch of silver techbases one of which is a spiritual sequel to the Vrack series (and contains a convincing replica of a Stargate), an Egyptian pyramid, several Hell maps and a couple of slaughter maps covered in huge pictures of video game bosses and sf/fantasy film villains that would easily be several times the size of a normal wad by themselves.

What there isn't is a huge map that combines the whole lot in one go. When you think of Deus Vult you recall this enormous map that broke the sidedef limit and takes the best part of an hour just to run through without any monsters in the way. There's nothing like that here - although some of the maps might take ages the first time, that's just because you don't know where everything is and you have to search a lot. (Map21 took 2 hours of game time the first time I did it on skill 2, and many more outside of it, a lot of which was trying to get Yadex to load maps that break the sidedef limit, but I digress. Now I know where everything is, I can do it in 30 minutes - probably faster if I didn't bother getting 100% items)

Okay I'm getting bored of writing so I'll mention one other thing. There's a lot of corny graphics that made me cringe, and in such a beautiful wad it kind of stands out even more. The first DV suffered from "comedy" secrets as well, you may recall. This one doesn't just have silly secrets, it goes even further and namedrops various people in the textures in the actual levels. The text file is 120k of faintly embarrassing self-indulgence as well.

But the bottom line is DVII is one of the best looking map sets you will ever see, and very much worth playing. I just like to complain...