Thursday, October 31, 2019

Project Slipgate (SLIPGATE.WAD)

Bryant and Kevin are the brothers Robinson. You might know them as Team Demise but I wasn't aware that they had a website until I started poking around for this review. They more commonly go by Gunrock and The Solution and they generally make levels for feature-rich source ports. (G)ZDoom, Vavoom, you know the type. Unraveling their development history has been a challenge because they are fond of going back and remastering their old works while eliminating the older versions. Where their debut, quake2doom, tried to bring the magic of Quake II to Doom, Project Slipgate worked with idtech2's flagship title. The most recent version replaces MAP01-MAP11, the same number but not slots as the original 2002 (2001?) release. It's built for ZDoom but the authors are fond enough of GZDoom's special effects that they recommend using it if you can.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Congestion Control 2 (CCT2.WAD)

by Karthik Abhiram Krishna

Congestion Control 2 actually started out as Out of Phase 4: Interview With the Cyberdemon. It got a little out of hand for K.A. to file it alongside his light-speed OPHASE stylings, though, and thus became CCT2. There are a few other little details worth mentioning, too, like it being published on Karthik's 21st birthday. More on that later. This 2003 MAP01 replacement is the author's first limit-removing release but it also has bonus features for players using ZDoom. It takes advantage of the MAPINFO lump for a few extra bells and whistles whose absence won't mechanically affect your playthrough.

Sunday, October 27, 2019

The River of Fire (RIVERF.WAD)

by Pablo Dictter

Pablo made a good number of Doom / II levels that are no longer publicly available before he started uploading stuff to /idgames. The confusingly titled They Will Repent (House of Pain Part Two) was his archival debut. The quasi-E4 styled map pointed pretty strongly to the level design that he would be infamous for in Alien Vendetta. As it turns out, though, he also dabbled in making levels for Heretic. The River of Fire is the first of these irregular morsels to find their way to broader publication. It wasn't uploaded until 2001 but it was available elsewhere circa 2000. It was made for a now-defunct source port called wHeretic but as far as I can tell the engine did not have any special features, primarily existing to bring the game from DOS to Windows.

Friday, October 25, 2019

No Quarter (DOME1M3.WAD)

by Will "ArchVile46" Hackney

Some Doomers have big dreams. Will, who later went by Kid Airbag, had a grand vision borne out of a failed project that I've heard little of - Doom Revisited. He salvaged his submission and set out on his own epic, Doomed Once More, which would span the Ultimate quadrilogy and - he hoped - the entirety of Doom II as well. DOM barely got off the ground, though, and Hackney eventually released the finished portions of the first episode in 2003. This was after the release of the original Community Chest, in which he was a participant. In 2002, though, came this promising teaser. No Quarter is an E1M3 replacement for limit-removing source ports.

Friday, October 18, 2019

Enjay Doom (NJDOOM1.WAD)

Nigel Rowand has one of if not the longest and continuous careers in the community. His Waterlab GZD was released in 2017 and he had probably the first "complete" megaWAD in 1994. If you want to be an ass then Enjay Doom was technically published as three individual episodes before being collected and put on Compuserve. It's not as though each one was separated by years worth of development. This compilation formed the basis of several of his future megaWADs. It was followed by a Doom II conversion and, later on, a retooling for ZDoom. I half-suspect that it's also part of his private project, the Aspects total conversion.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Blind Alley, Nukage (BNDALYO.WAD)

by Gene Bird

Gene Bird was a fairly big contributor to both the original Community Chest as well as CCHEST2. All of his submissions to each were previously released as part of his Blind Alley series, however, much like fellow participant Sphagne. BNDALY is all over the place in the archives because GB had made some if not most of the material during the previous five years and finally started polishing it to a comfortable level in late 2002. He also says that the finished episode would contain somewhere between seven and ten levels. SPOILER: The Blind Alley catalogue spans fifteen entries, more than half of the alphabet. I say that because all of these levels were given a corresponding alpha(-numeric) character. Nukage, for instance, is "O" (judging by the filename) and would have occupied MAP24. Because one can never get enough D_RUNNIN, though, it is a MAP01 replacement.

Monday, October 14, 2019


In my review of ICARUMEM I mentioned the idea of further galactic adventures in the vein of Memfis's MEM_OLD1. Tayutayu may not use the Icarus: Alien Vanguard texture set but it is another level on an interstellar station which makes it pretty cool in my book. Like his old space base it's also for the original Doom, occupying E1M1 and E1M2. This minisode was explicitly tested in PrBoom-plus but the parameters suggest that it ought to work just fine in any limit-removing source port. It was soft-released to various forums in early 2012 but was not uploaded until his great archive dump of 2014.

Monday, October 7, 2019


Kaiser has made a ton of stuff for the Doom community which is why he was the first person to receive the equivalent of a lifetime achievement award for the 2013 Cacowards. He put out more than a hundred levels with his DSV series, not to forget an impressive array of singles; was a common fixture through Community Chest as well as CCHEST2 and 3; led the Absolution team, at the time the definitive experience for PC users; took the piss during The Community is Falling 1, 2, and 3; and worked to bring authentic classic FPS experiences to modern users. He started out on Strife but eventually fulfilled the promise of the 64 TC with the Doom64 EX source port.

Saturday, October 5, 2019

Dark Fate (DFT.WAD)

by Karthik Abhiram Krishna

Karthik had released eight levels spanning 2000-2002 and all of them could be conceivably fall under the techbase theme. A few of them - namely Congestion Control and Out of Phase III - contained some reality-bending accoutrements of Hell, though, in a sort of freewheeling "Pandemonium" style. Dark Fate changes direction a bit and takes things all the way to the abyssal end of the spectrum. Released in 2003, it's a MAP01 replacement for Doom II that draws on the texture scheme of the original Inferno episode. It isn't limited to Ultimate's bestiary, though, a fact that will quickly become evident as you play.

Thursday, October 3, 2019

They Will Repent (House of Pain Part Two) (PD-TWR.WAD)

by Pablo Dictter

It's unfortunate to generalize an author's entire career based on a single level but Pablo Dictter has been most remembered for Alien Vendetta's "One Flew Over the Caco's Nest" (MAP21). It's not a horrible level but it can't compare to the masterstroke of "The Spooked", his MAP16 submission to Doom 2 Unleashed, Paul Corfiatis's 2011 community project. Judging by his AV work, his 2001 self had a pretty good eye for architectural detail but little ability to create interesting spaces. He made many levels prior to here but this is his earliest /idgames material. An archived version of his 2001 home page lists a bunch of stuff but circa the included.TXT in 04/05/00 he listed Two Gates - I believe a work in progress - and what I assume is this very PWAD. It's titled They Will Repent (House of Pain Part Two) and is an E4M5 replacement for The Ultimate Doom. Pablo doesn't mention a source port but I don't see anything that a limit-removing one couldn't handle.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

The Baron's Domain (AV46SP01.WAD)

by Will "Archvile46" Hackney

Will was a part of the source port boom scene and parts beyond with a career spanning 2001-2007. Later known as Kid Airbag on the Doomworld Forums, he had a standalone release - the finished portions of his Doomed Once More episode - as well as a few single levels. His most lasting contributions were to the Community Chest series, with an entry in the first iteration as well as CCHEST3. Unlike a few of his peers - namely Gene Bird and Sphagne - his submissions were exclusively developed for the collections. The Baron's Domain is the first of his small collection of solo publications, a MAP01 replacement for Doom II that should play back in any source port.