Wads for 2008-04-03
10, 11, 13 Years of Doom Ages ago I wrote about 10 Years of Doom and off-handedly mentioned 11 Years of Doom. Of course I never got round to it but then a 13 Years of Doom appeared and reminded me.
10 Years of Doom Well, I've done that already, but it's basically a bunch of small disjoint areas with a Doom hell castle theme - that is, green stone, marble, blood etc. Replaces E3M4.
11 Years of Doom Significantly better; less symmetrical, the map writing is more integrated with the rest of the map, and it's a Doom 2 map so there's more of a variety of monsters. It's pretty easy - there's only one place in this large level I felt in danger of death. There are a lot of secrets spread out over the level, of varying difficulty to find, from "clever" to "slightly misaligned wall texture". I didn't really care for the Wolfenstein part (but it is admittedly small, and well-hidden.) It runs on MAP02.
13 Years of Doom Amusingly in development for a long time, it came out a couple of weeks after Doom's 14th birthday. Unfortunately it's not very good. Sorry to say it but this map was made by a group of people who all clearly had no idea what the others were doing in regard to theme, difficulty level etc, and then pasted together, so you end up with quite a mess. It also trips one of my pet hates, which is disabling large parts of the automap, in this case just so the map still reads "13 YEARS OF DOOM" clearly.
Keep Running A Boom map masquerading as a Doom map. Seriously it uses a lot of Boom stuff but apart from maybe using all six keys you will hardly notice. It looks like a pre-sourceports Doom2 wad. The main area is a magma canyon with some bridges and buildings around, but there's tech bits, hellish blood pools and and grassy river valleys right next door (literally) The gameplay is quite annoying due to low health and being constantly peppered by buckshot. It's very top heavy. I don't mind the Doom2 theme but the gameplay needs work before I'd recommend this map. Suggestion: bring the monsters in in waves, don't just have them all right there at the start.
DOOM: The Final Conflict A re-upload from 1994. You'd be forgiven for skipping it as it starts with a maze. Hint: the exit is clearly labelled provided you don't pick up any of the light goggles which litter your path - or you could just cheat, like I did... There's some other stupid puzzles as well, it's a shame, it puts you off before you get to the town section and the ending, which aren't so bad.
More to follow. I still have like a dozen files I should post at least one sentence about.
Dodgy Wad Conversion Utilities
I had instantly recognised Doom: The Final Conflict but couldn't place it. I searched the usual places - the wadpaks, heroes.wad, etc. - couldn't find it. Eventually I remembered that other source of old maps I have, the D!1000 disc.
On there we have fc2.wad, which is a dodgy Doom2 conversion. There are a lot of dodgy Doom2 conversions on that CD and they have certain things in common if you're familiar with the original. For example, one (and only one) imp will be turned into an archvile. I concluded they must be being mechanically transformed and resolved to track down the program that was doing it.
It wasn't hard - I quickly found the culprit, DM2CONV, which turned out to be quite a powerful program, with a versatile, if messy, configuration directives file format. (Strictly therefore it's the default configuration file that's responsible for the conversions, not the program, but that's just semantics.)
It even comes with public domain source code, albeit in Pascal...
I play Doom2 MAP01 a lot. It's probably my most played map(*). Usually I run round it while testing some new engine code I've been writing.
A strike is defined as beating MAP01, having acquired the rocket launcher, and killing all the imps outside with one rocket (you know, the secret area with the shotgun, that outside) You get extra points for style if you fire the rocket as you enter the area for the first time, running sideways through the secret door as the imps wake up.
The bowling analogy is obvious because you get exactly two rockets. You can of course "pick up the spare" with the second rocket, which is easier, but that's not what I'm talking about here.
Anyway the point of all this is that I'd always believed it to be possible, but never managed it until recently. Given the number of times I've tried to do it while running round MAP01 (admittedly not tried very hard) you'd think it'd have been more often, but sadly not.
Of course then I find it's been done a bunch of times in various Compet-n max demos - including the current best time in that directory, although the guy doesn't get the extra style points - but still.
(*) It's between MAP01 and MAP02(**), the latter of which I often find myself running round after I've completed some PWAD that replaced the former. But since MAP01 is so small and you can pretty much just run to the exit - unlike MAP02 which will take a while, and you will almost certainly have to fight - it's probably my most played. It's definitely my most beaten.
(**) What about E1M1? I didn't have a copy of Doom until quite some time after Doom2 so MAP01 had a head start. I run Doom2 more often than Doom as it's the default IWAD. E1M1 is slightly harder to just run through without killing the monsters as there are sergeants, no easily available chainsaw, and some narrower gaps where the monsters get in the way more easily. So definitely not E1M1.
I wrote this entry with Markdown just to see what it would be like.
I realise I'm unfamiliar with the codes you use compared to HTML but I don't think it's saved me any actual time to write in Markdown. It's still taken hours to finish this post.
The HTML output has lots of blank lines that I wouldn't have put in.
It's certainly easier to write some things using it -
**[wadname](wadurl)** is slightly less typing than
<p><b><a href="wadurl">wadname</a></b></p> - but you can't just load the file into a browser to preview it, you have to process it first, so there's an extra step to contend with.
Of course that preview step might be better integrated into my update script. Not really sure how, though.