Tuesday, July 17, 2018

The Brotherhood of Ruin (RUINBROS.WAD)


In recent years Kristian Aro is recognized more for his work with his soul brother, Paul Corfiatis, but he was a pretty prolific solo author prior to joining up for Death Tormention II and later 2002: A Doom Odyssey. It's actually pretty fascinating to follow, from the very early and rough 20 Days in Hell to the functional 32 Hours in Pain, afterward hitting his stride with 1 Day of Hellish Revenge. The Brotherhood of Ruin found its way into Doomworld's Top 10 WADs of 2003 but its original date of release - wherever that happened to be - was 2001. It's a seven-map episode for Doom II, was designed to be played in Boom-compatible source ports, and is primarily themed around the ancient Mesoamerican temple texture set used in Hexen II's second hub.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

CH Retro Episode (RETROEPS.WAD)


Chris Hansen did a lot of work for Doom II and then ended up helping out his brother in arms, Paul Corfiatis, with making a megaWAD for the original. I don't know whether he was craving the creation of classically-themed maps prior to 2002: A Doom Odyssey but somewhere while hacking it out he was bitten by Phobos Fever. This project began life as a single level titled CH_RETRO in 2001 and after a lot of positive feedback it was expanded to a full Knee Deep in the Dead replacement as the similarly-titled CH Retro Episode. It was ultimately released after 2002ADO was finished but during the same year - 2002.

Monday, July 9, 2018

CH Retro (CH_RETRO.WAD)

CH RETRO
by Christian Hansen


To the uninitiated, it may look as though Chris was indulging his Ultimate tooth prior to his work on 2002: A Doom Odyssey. His painstakingly arranged back catalog tells a different story, however. At the very least, Hansen had built no less than four levels for Paul's pet project before even starting his Retro Episode. While the final product saw release in 2002, the same year as 2002ADO and similar critical darling Rip It, Tear It, Smash It, it originally started as a single level before being incorporated as RETROEPS's E1M6 as "Primary Base". There's a slight parallel to The Classic Episode but CH_RETRO's development was far less publicly measured. This initial offering is an E1M1 replacement for the original Doom.

Friday, July 6, 2018

Flay the Obscene - The Third (FLAYOBS3.WAD)

FLAY THE OBSCENE
THE THIRD

by Christian Hansen


The artist formerly known as c-cooper started out trying to build his one man megaWAD one level at a time before moving to a more sensible one and done pace. His Flay the Obscene series marked a return to a serial format, the first two entries seeing release in 1999 and 2000. The Third, published in 2001, would be the last... until 2014's Reversed. FLAYOBS3 is a MAP15 replacement for Doom II, almost certainly because the previous levels originally spanned from MAP12 to MAP14. It has no secret exit so I wouldn't waste my time looking for one but there is at least one cheeky jab at the player whose purpose I only just now realized.

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Phobia (PHOBIA.WAD)

PHOBIA
by Kristian "Ebola" Käll


Kristus started his authorship with pretty much the most ambitious project possible, a megaWAD total conversion. Codename HYENA: Killer Machine likely established its legacy mostly with the purveyors of the weird. The work that followed is what made him a Doom community legend. Phobia was originally released in 2001 and then greatly expanded over the course of five years, eventually published in 2006 as Phobia: The Age. Both were made to be experienced in Legacy but the original is a MAP01 replacement for Doom II. You may be wondering why I'm playing the single level release when there is, one may dare say, a superior version available. Blame it on an interest with its editorial history.

Thursday, June 28, 2018

ONEMANDOOM Rides Again

I've formally changed the title of this blog from Doomed: Doom WAD Reviews to ONEMANDOOM: WAD Reviews. ONEMANDOOM is usually how I've seen it introduced on the internet since that is its unique URL; it doesn't clash with the DooMed Speed Demos Archive (DSDA); and it has a nice, punchy rhythm.


The moniker came from the blog's original title, One Man's Journey Through Doom. The idea was to present it as my travelogue through the Doom community's offerings both past and present with the intent to emphasize that I am but one person offering an opinion on my own experiences. I didn't want to claim a monopoly on writing reviews even if I virtually had one by default. I certainly never thought that I would have taken a part in writing any of the Cacowards, though I remember thinking that it would be cool to be asked to write something for 2011.


I would like to think that I recognize where my writings over the past seven years have shaped the way that we as a community describe the experience of playing Doom levels. I also hope that by providing an example I have given others who might not even know where to begin a starting point so that they can feel comfortable discussing their opinions with their own, unique voices.


I thank you for reading ONEMANDOOM and I'd also like to thank the mappers, musicians, graphic artists, coders, writers, and anyone else who makes the Doom community such a treat to be a part of.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Codename HYENA: Killer Machine (HYENA.WAD)


Kristian Käll went on to major acclaim for his Legacy PWADs - Phobia, Ni'mRoD: IXNAY on the HOMBRE, and Phobia: The Age - and more recently his Heretic and Hexen projects, Curse of D'sparil and Curse of the Lost Gods. The first two happened during his tenure as a member of Unholy Software and their earliest release was a total conversion for the original Doom, published in 1998. Codename HYENA: Killer Machine gets mentioned every now and then but there's a hint of uncertainty behind the namedrops. It replaces the first three episodes of the original Doom - the last a decidedly Deathmatch dalliance - and has a fair bit of DeHackEd work in order to tweak the values of its core gameplay for a fairly different experience.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Quick is Good (QUIKISGD.WAD)

QUICK IS GOOD
by Malcolm Sailor


The archive has QUIKISGD listed immediately after 3PACK_1 as far as release dates go but the .ZIP for its sequel, QUIKISG2, has a bibliography of sorts that calls a lot of things into question. I believe it to be an artifact of Sailor's penchant for updating stuff to fix bugs. In the previous year, 1995, he released a couple of single levels - DARKER and RULER - before a package of three individual outings including a new version of the latter solo venture (3PACK_1). All of his 1996 stuff is timestamped in July of that year but I couldn't tell you whether he was just storing PWADs like a camel, updated a bunch of stuff at the same time, or had one really productive summer vacation. I'm leaning toward the second.