Friday, April 29, 2016

Phobos Mission Control (E1M4B.WAD)

by John Romero

The man with the blood on his hands is back again. Romero released his first Doom map in, like, nineteen years with Tech Gone Bad. Just as that one was an E1M8 replacement, Phobos Mission Control - John's newest publication - slots into E1M4. And, like E1M8B, it requires some kind of limit-removing port to run. As Romero points out, E1M4 was built on top of a framework supplied by Doom co-conspirator Tom Hall; E1M4B completes the clean sweep, giving his fans something they'd (probably) always wanted, an entire episode of Phobos-themed Doom maps. I can only hope that his Kickstarter campaign for BLACKROOM continues to yield such dusky jewels.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

The Aqueous Rise and Fall (AQUEOUS.WAD)

by Christian Hansen

Christian Hansen made a lot of single level maps during 1998 and 1999, originally publishing them on the now defunct "Doom Zone", but uploading them to /idgames in 2000. While all of these were made for the collective experience we've come to know as Doom II, some made use of the Final Doom IWADs. The Aqueous Rise and Fall is part of this category, being a MAP13 replacement for The Plutonia Experiment released in 1999. While it uses the textures, it's actually pretty far from the Casali style of gameplay, not that that's any surprise if you've played any of Hansen's previous releases. And, like a Doomer after my own heart, he's included an in-depth narrative.

Saturday, April 23, 2016


by Christian Hansen

Chris Hansen was one of the original members of the 1998 crew; don't let that 2000 time stamp fool you. Falling into the same crowd as Paul Corfiatis and Kristian Aro, he's had his work featured plenty of times in the several incarnations of the Cacowards. Quail is his fifth released level, made toward the end of 1998. It's also the fourth and last level in his Doom 3: Ad Infernos series, slotted in at MAP25. For those following at home, that's MAP01 to MAP22 to MAP03 to MAP25. Kinky! Quail differs from the previous three levels in a lot of pretty important ways; before that, though, here's the pitch.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Star Trek: Voyager: A Time to Face Your Fears (VOYAGER.WAD)

by Chris Hansen

I wouldn't have known it looking at the maps he makes nowadays, but the .TXTs in Chris Hansen's early levels reveals an unabashed love of several things, as well as Sandra Bullock. He is (was?) a hardcore science fiction enthusiast, and liked Star Trek: Voyager enough to make a Doom level inspired by it. A Time to Face Your Fears happened toward the end of 1998, a MAP08 replacement for Doom II. Unlike his Doom 3: Ad Infernos maps, which were made around the same time (this one between The Unknown Chasm and Quail), VOYAGER has a strong tech / space ship feel, which is completely understandable.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

The Unknown Chasm (CHASM.WAD)

by Christian Hansen

Chris Hansen was part of a wave of Doom authors that debuted in 97-98 and established themselves in the years that followed; like his good buddy, Paul Corfiatis, Hansen is still making PWADs. This one, The Unknown Chasm, was his third original release. It is a single level for Doom II published in August 1998 and occupies the MAP03 slot, which is interesting as the previous level - The Blessed Hex - was made for MAP22. As I mentioned before, it's probably because of the song and sky combination, especially since the followup is for MAP25. Oh, yeah - this is part of a series, Chris Hansen's Doom 3: Ad Infernos.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

The Blessed Hex (BLESSED.WAD)

by Christian Hansen

The first thing any self-respecting Doom author does is plan out an epic series to build on the charming narrative of either of the IWADs and cement their place as the maker of one of the most talked-about PWADs on the /idgames archive. Well, uh, I'm not saying that Chris Hansen was in the self-congratulatory cloud. But, his first four levels were part of a series he had dubbed Doom 3: Ad Infernos. The Blessed Hex is the second level in the series, following The Revenge of Avind. It's a single map replacement for MAP22, which usually results from a combination of which Doom II track and sky the author preferred.

Monday, April 11, 2016

The Revenge of Avind (AVIND.WAD)

by Christian Hansen

Hansen is one of the community's longest-running authors, a dude who has published pretty much something every year since 1998... though his early work didn't make it to the archive proper until 2000. He's also been one of Paul Corfiatis's chief collaborators, guest-starring in 2002: A Doom Odyssey as well as Bella II. The Revenge of Avind is his first original level as well as the first of a short series of Doom II levels (Doom 3: Ad Infernos), this one followed by The Blessed Hex. It's a MAP01 replacement, originally published in 1998, and has its own bit of flash fiction to go along with it.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Tech Gone Bad (E1M8B.WAD)

by John Romero

Yes; John Romero done went and made a Doom PWAD. The name of this level is Tech Gone Bad, and it replaces E1M8. Twenty-two years later in 2016, you can finally have your full-Romero E1. The purist bogeymen will be disappointed, since Romero opted for limit-removing ports and uses some of the goodies that were reserved for E2 and E3; namely, the Berserk pack and invul sphere. They're both here, along with everything else from Knee Deep in the Dead, plus a little something extra because of the plot. As a man named Jasper once said, "...What a time to be alive."