I fucking love this level, but it kind of makes me feel like crap, cause it's so good.
Drew this is so fucking true :|
One of the reasons I will never map like this, is because I�m not pacient enought to map such a awesome layout and textures placement
Bump On The Head
Just counted, Antediluvian has 6 drop-downs and 5 wind tunnels. Total: 11! And almost all of them drop you into a place with immediately-alerted monsters. Does this make it a masterpiece or the worst map of all time?
Its funny how maps are a product of their time, of when they are created. There is no denying this is one hard map (especially the final room) and sits well within the 2000-2008 era of when custom maps were designed for veteran players only.
The map has the Id wind tunnel vibe done perfectly, with an endless sea of brown riveted metal and copious amounts of pipes growing in all directions. There are plenty of visual moments to enjoy, with large cross beam tunnels to strange metal cages and oppressive metal grates hinting at other places to explore.
The start of the level with the dual door ogre ambush was awesome and the start room paying homage to the original wind tunnel layout with locked pipes and water sections below to explore was perfect. At first I thought there was going to be a choice of where to go, two doors two ogres, but sadly the level turned to a linear path of various metal pipes connected via wind and water.
On several occasions I nearly drowned trying to figure out where to go. There are two sections where there is a grate and large metal plate in the ceiling and they are infact doors! At first I assumed they were just locked detail and spent ages just swimming around wondering where to go. With the large amounts of water and not obvious exits I felt like I was fighting monsters and the environment at the same time.
All of the large rooms started with the player being dropped into a hostile environment and being shot at from all directions with no chance of retreat. I know this is the original design of the Wind Tunnels but I thought it could have been different with some rooms allowing the player to plan their attack instead.
I especially like how the level wrapped around on itself, it is a beautiful design with plenty of grates looking into other areas and rooms being revisited with cool machinery opening up access to upper areas.
There were a couple of fights in the water and plenty of moments trying to get out of the water while being attacked. This is certainly my least favourite part of quake gameplay, the hassle of exiting water while trying to work out where the enemies are, it was often easier just to stay on the water surface and shoot the enemies.
I played the map on normal/hard skill level and the monster changes are subtle. There is the usual upgrade paths and quantity increases and I thought the placement of ogres was awesome with so much odd geometry angles to play with, the grenade mayhem was perfect. Unfortunately I spent so much time running around like a headless chicken I did not have much time to setup much infighting. The steep learning curve of each encounter coupled with a hostile environment never left me satisfied with the outcome.
The secrets were hit and miss with some being extremely cool (MH platform) and others being an odd mixture of visual language (RA wall switch). I thought the Quad was strange because I had to backtrack to use it and was expecting to drop down through the grate floor with an alternative route. The first secret is certainly the one which made me smile the most because it was simple but yet so effective.
Overall an architecturally gorgeous map with the classic Wind Tunnel visual / gameplay vibe, plenty of extremely steep learning curve encounters and a very hard fight to finish. A map I think was driven by the needs and desires of the community at the time and as the title suggests is a reflection of the past.
I agree with your assessment of the map. I still love it though.
Thanks For The Feedback, Sock.
It's always interesting to get more of an outsider perspective. My opinion of this map is that it was a successful execution of my goals at the time, but your feedback helps shed light on the idea that even perfect execution relies on having the right goals. And those goals should be reexamined and improved over time.
So, my goals were obviously 1. capture the theme and feeling of the original Wind Tunnels, 2. Create challenging combat, secrets, and traversal (to satisfy the known audience of quake map players) 3. Perfect the "hub-based linear path" style of quake map layout.
To some extent the shortcomings you identified flowed from these goals
* many forced combat encounters from exiting wind tunnels
* extensive underwater sections with non-obvious exits
* easy skill setting maybe not easy enough
* also easy skill setting doesn't make it any easier to traverse underwater (a biosuit in each area would have been a good easy-only addition)
* lack of route choices
* lack of opportunities to observe before attacking
Also the quad was probably the wrong item to put in that secret since it's not convenient to get to the next combat area -- you can make good use of it but you really have to know where you go and run there.
Quads In Secrets Tend To Be Useless
The story is usually "show up in a room, murder all the guys, hunt for secrets, find a Quad, curse, leave, never get to use it."
Short of adding an inventory system for toting stuff around until you want it, how do you make that more useful? The quad & countdown activate the next time you press fire?
Should always spawn enemies when collected!
Also unlock a mad dash into a horde of enemies ahead.
Zendar Did That
...and locked the player in!!
it's true, you really have to plan it so that after getting the quad, the player is quickly funneled into the next combat area, since as you say they will probably not discover the secret before clearing out the area that contains the secret.
I can't think of any levels that have done it really well offhand, but there are probable some.
A secret with a quad that spawns a bunch of monsters you otherwise wouldn't fight in the first place is basically a secret area that takes some of your ammo away.
I Hate To Give Sandy Petersen Credit
but that guy usually had 4 quads per map and you always had shit to kill in his maps.
yeah, i wonder if the solution to quads is just to put more quads. o_.
I just played through e4 last week and I was thinking that too. I think one of those maps you can get to the next quad as the last one runs out and chain them all the way to the exit.
Take Ammo Away?
I'd argue that you're adding gameplay to the level, which is intrinsically more valuable than ammo collection. And nothing stops you from filling the secret with ammo as well.
Chaining power ups was great in ep4. It's rare that a mapper uses it nowadays though, think I'll give it a try. The nice thing of them being in the open was they changed the tactical approach to the level greatly depending on when the player grabbed them, but didn't really punish the player if wasted.
If you think of a secret as something to give you a leg up in the level/game, it's odd. If you think of a secret as hidden content, though, it does make perfect sense. Secrets usually aren't, although that's not to say they can't be. The exception is when they're secret levels. A hidden battle with the quad becomes almost a miniature secret level that way, I guess.
Could you make a secret area, then, with no items in it? A back door that lets you ambush the monsters waiting in an ambush closet? Or nothing more than a nice vista?
The knave remake of gloom keep has a massive secret area that served no purpose other than to be a cool easter egg
In my coag map, there's a secret that opens up routes and increases the level's connectivity for easier maneuverablility and less pressure in a time-limit gameplay event later on. I thought it was a good idea, although unfortunately it's way too difficult to find.
Most of ITS could be considered as such, if you try playing both with and without the amulet.
My favourite secrets are the large complex ones which just give more gameplay or something cool to look at, rather than just a bonus.
Whenever I find myself adding a lazy secret like that I always try to remove it completely or replace it with something that has a greater pact on how the level is played, or just makes the player think "ha, cool!"
Pact = Impact
and e1m2 as well have good quad placement. In e1m1 either way you find it, you are just in front of the spiral with monsters on the platforms and at the bottoms. In e1m2, it can be wasted if you find the silver door first and then the quad, but if you get the key first and pick up the quad, it gives a nice power trip as you blast through the ogres and the introduction of the fiend (which may serve to make you underestimate the health of the fiends later in the game). So you don't need to go full Sandy, sometimes full Romero works.
what you could do is make it a double secret, first one lets you find a quad, wich seems to be o typical quad like described above: rendered useless because you already killed everything in th eroom where you found it and next combat is not close enough. 2nd secret opens up a shortcut to the next combat
was full willits.
Gloom Keep had such expansive and interconnected secrets since it was built to double as a deathmatch map. All those extra between-the-walls spaces that lead to teleporters across the map just become part of the flow of the level. That's one of the reasons it made such a great base for an ITS level.
I get mixed up on the map authors sometimes, but yeah my favorite sp maps are the ones that also work well for dm, they just have some button and key gates in them. The connectivity just feels right.