Wednesday, June 5, 2013


by Josie "Morgana" Austin

ENTRY is a fairly unremarkable OG Doom map from 1996 with a sweet coda, revealed some sixteen years after its release. It's a small E1M1 replacement, showing just over seventy monsters, and the only release from one Josie Austin, aka Morgana, who was apparently to author an entire episode which never materialized. You're some kind of prisoner who was supposed to be released, only to be forced through a deadly gauntlet after being shot in the leg by your escort, ostensibly for the sadistic satisfaction of the keepers. It isn't revealed whether they honor letting you free if you manage to escape, presumably because Josie never got that far.

Entry is filled with the basic Doom trash monsters - zombies, sergeants, imps, demonkin, and lost souls. Because of this, there's no need for anything stronger than the shotgun and chaingun. As a result, you spend a lot of time with the single shotty, which is par for the course when playing OG Doom levels, which may wear on some players. Me and the shotgun go way back, though, so I'm happy to blitz through Josie's playground, and she's not afraid to throw a few angry mobs that put a little pressure on the player, excepting the fact that you can just back up to a doorway and plink away until the crowd thins out.

The actual layout is a little flat, but there are plenty of windows to look through, plus a few nice bits of architecture, like that pool in the dead center of the map. Some people categorized Entry as something more like a '94 or '95 Doom level, which is on the money given how boxy some of the rooms are and how errant the texturing is from area to area, but the layout is functional and gets the player moving. There are some '94isms, like doors that don't look explicitly like doors (but will stand out to seasoned vets, like the no personnel sign in the eastern computer section), and not quite hidden essentials, but anyone with half a brain should be able to punch through to the exit switch.

Entry is a fun, disposable Doom level. It's not at all challenging but anyone who loves going through the more ancient odds and ends of the community's output should find Entry to be a dusky jewel. As far as the coda goes, ENTRY led to Josie getting in touch with her future husband over Doom tech support. If only it were that easy for everyone, right?


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