Friday, July 26, 2019

Mayhem 1500 (MAYHEM15.WAD)

Every May since 2012 Doomworld community members have gotten together in an attempt to make a megaWAD in a month. It isn't polished and finalized by June, though, and it might not even be finished during the same year. The 2015 session followed in the grand tradition of MAYHEM13 insofar as it wasn't released until 2016. It is also the second of the projects to reach the symbolic status of a full game replacement, occupying MAP01-MAP32 with additional bonus levels in the MAP33 and MAP34 slots. MAYhem 1500, like its forebears, is meant to be played in a Boom-compatible source port. If you play it in something that supports a brand of MAPINFO, though, then the secret levels will transition smoothly into the extra stuff.

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Mossvale Dungeons (AP_008.WAD)

by Alex Parsons

Alex made a bunch of maps for his World's End series but he's probably known better for being a contributor to the first Community Chest. His peers Gene Bird and Sphagne submitted levels that they had originally released as standalone singles. Parsons's maps are however exclusively available as part of CCHEST. I dunno whether they were sitting on his hard drive before he submitted them or if he made "Ground Floor" and "Mandrel" specifically for the 2003 project and then retroactively dubbed them a part of World's End. Whatever the case, Mossvale Dungeons is the eighth level in the series and was published back in 2002. Like most of his solo stuff, it's a MAP01 replacement for Doom II and targets limit-removing ports.

Monday, July 22, 2019


by "Memfis"

Memfis has published a ton of material, most of it in small packages. His early works displayed his infatuation with classic PWADs both popular and less so. Requimem used Requiem's resources, of course, and actually consisted of remakes of its first two levels. MM2MEM01 was released in 2011 but not uploaded to /idgames until 2014. It continues in the same tradition as far as using another PWAD's assets, in this case Memento Mori II. It doesn't purport to reimagine Dennis Moeller's "Outpost", though. It is a brand new level for Doom II that merely occupies the MAP01 slot. You'll need MM2 in order to play it without any missing textures. The .TXT also implies that it is meant for limit-removing source ports.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Smooth Doom (SMOOTHDOOM.PK3)

by "Gifty"

Hundreds if not thousands of increasingly complex Doom mods have been made since the advent of ACS and DECORATE in ZDoom. Many of them offer significant gameplay changes but others are of a more aesthetic variety, "polishing" the game's appearance. Smooth Doom was born out of a proof-of-concept from SgtMarkIV. Gifty took the cue and pursued the idea to its logical conclusion, first releasing it on Doomworld in 2014. It remains one of the community's most beloved mods, particularly for those folks who still enjoy the look of the stock resources but can't stand the staggered animations. Since ZDoom's retirement, Smooth Doom requires a current revision of GZDoom.

Mid-Year State of the Blog: 2019

Mid-Year State of the Blog: 2019

Longtime readers may have realized that the pace of reviews has been faster as of late with all of the single-level posts. As of the beginning of July I have already posted more reviews than I did in 2017 overall (63 vs. 48).

What this looked like, in summary:

Friday, July 12, 2019

Out of Phase II (OPHASE2.WAD)

It's 2002 and I have one map left to go before Karthik gets his shit together to make the sort of level that I would expect to see in Doomworld's Top 100 WADs of All Time. Out of Phase was a paradigm shift from the awkward construction of Ick and Chaos Punch. Its sequel, OPHASE2, has more of the same aesthetic and isn't much different on its face. Some of the elements hint at his potential, though, and have me excited to see what sort of critical leaps he'll take between now and then. I was surprised to find that Out of Phase II is actually a two-level minisode, replacing MAP01 and MAP02 of Doom II. When you consider its origin, though, it makes a bit more sense.

Wednesday, July 10, 2019


by "Spooky" John Bye

This is the second level that Bye authored and it's sort of a disappointment after having seen the conceptual promise of CyberDoom. I'm almost prefer to play his highly orthogonal lighting experiments. The title is Maze and while this accurately describes its main setpiece it fails to fully encapsulate the more banal aspects of its level design. The subtitle, BIG IS BEAUTIFUL, can be true especially when we're talking about the macrotecture that typifies high skill ceiling mapsets. Not for MAZE, though. This was originally made back in 1995 and is an E1M1 replacement for the original Doom.

Monday, July 8, 2019

Max Saga: Escape From Skull Dungeon (MAX1.WAD)

by Mike "Impie" MacDee

Valley of the Gwangi might have been a pretty esoteric reference for the Doom community. Derceto put Impie's oeuvre back in the fold by drawing on Alone in the Dark, a PC survival horror game. His aborted Max Saga pulled from another property, this one the Mighty Max line of toys. Ol' Maxie even went on to have his own kickass cartoon series, which I still remember fondly. The toys were typically little clamshell playsets shaped like monster heads and the backs of the packages had small comics. I didn't know that they were originally British but I was fortunate enough to have a ton of them during my childhood. Not Skull Dungeon, though, which this level is sort of inspired by. Mike's first entry is more like Gwangi's Palace insofar as it is a Doom II MAP01 replacement for any limit-removing port.

Monday, July 1, 2019

DoomCenter E1 Mapping Contest (E1CONTEST.WAD)

Doom Center was an important fixture of the community during the post-source port boom. It was something of a media hub in its promotion of PWADs and their authors. It eventually deactivated with the death of its host but some of its staff went on to join Doomworld. Snapshots of the site were thankfully preserved via but most of its content and enthusiasm have not figured into its legacy. I only know of Doom Center's existence because it hosted a map-making contest during a week that celebrated the shareware episode in 2001. John Romero himself judged the submissions; the winner received an autographed copy of the Ultimate Doom.