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Q1SP - "The Gateway To Hell"
After 20 months of work (I admit, I made a half part time effort... as I have been very busy the past year) here is my latest map.
This is the sequel of "Castle of the Dark Ages", hence some areas will look familiar...

NOTE: This map requires Quoth2 and an enhanced Quake engine (i.e Fitzquake 0.85 or aguirRe's GLQuake), as some standard limits have been exceeded




As usual, all feedback/comments are welcome

Enjoy !!!
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Downloading now... 
I came here hoping for a new Quake SP map but I didn't really expect to find one so short after the last release by Vondur. But yay, I was wrong!

Downloading now. Not enough time to play through it this evening so I'll be back with comments tomorrow. Screnies are sweet. :) Thanks! 
I Really Need To Fine My Quake Cd 
and install it on my new comp ASAP! 
Screenshots look amazing. Look at those arches!
Gonan play this as soon as I get a proper chance :) 
Additionnal Information For Those Who Never Read The Txt File... 
@Moderators: Please add in the thread description that this map requires Quoth2 and an enhanced Quake engine (i.e fitzQuake 0.85 or aguirRe's GLQuake), as some standard limits have been exceeded 
good tough ending! good design! :) 
Can't Wait 
I can't wait to play it, but I'm at work right now :(
Screenshots looks very nice, I only hope it has good difficulty settings - that means that I hope it's not too hard on easy :P

Nice map, comments in demo.

Main points of criticism IMO are that I don't like the lighting, it's overall too dark; skill 0 wasn't Easy at all, ie as usual, skill levels weren't differentiated enough; and the gold key directly after the SK door came too quickly, it would have been an opportunity to add more gameplay after the SK door.

Lots of reuse of areas, but that largely didn't bother me. Coming back to the start for the end fight was actually nice.

Lots of ammo, I had 80 rockets at some point and couldn't spend them - I assume this is down to the lack of skill level tweaking.Not enough health on skill 0, same reason I guess.

Nice setting and some of the architecture was *very* nice like the room with the arch and the ruined platforms above and the columns. Very reminescent of old Tomb Raider games. I guess there is a secret up there somewhere, somehow I didn't think of exploring more but I bet it's possible.

Some other architecture was slightly bland, like some of the corridors and the boss fight room for example. There could have been more details in those parts.

Complete lack of traps or puzzles, as far as I can remember. 99% combat and not many interactive elements. The jumping across gaps was nice. Nice broken floors in places.

The map was fun to play anyway and relatively accessible and straightforward, which is good. I liked the moving stairs. The vore fight was good. Monster placement was in general good and made sense.

I liked it, apart from the few points of criticism which you're always gonna get. Good job overall. I wasn't such a big fan of the texture theme though; I think the map could have looked better with different textures and with a bit more light, maybe some colored light, and a different skybox. But that is all down to taste.

It gave me a couple ideas for my own maps, too.

The Quoth monsters... I still have a problem with some of those. Vorelings have too much health; the death guard I don't quite get, why not just use hellknights; the gaunt is OK but a little on the weird side, and the death lord is easy to take advantage of... he is not really a threat when you give the player a rocket launcher and some cover.

I'm not a fan of locking doors behind the player, at least not for a couple measly vorelings. That has to do with the fact that Vorelings are generally annoying though. For a boss fight it is OK.

Flak ogre's spread is huge and very hard to see; often while strafing, you'll move right into one of those spikes, which is counterintuitive. At a large distance, they can be pretty annoying. Their projectiles do quite some damage.

I don't like how the normal shotgun is used for sniping in standard Quake (and Quoth); it feels weird to precision buckshot an ogre over 50 meters.

I can't hold these things against your map though JPL. They are rather problems I have with Quake/Quoth.

So that got a little off topic, but your map is a GJ and I liked it. Some parts are great. I had fun playing it. 
Oh Man 
AWESOME TITLE jesus christ!
too bad my computer totally crashed and is in for service (still on warranty), so reviews for this and elements will only happen later this month (I can't run quake on my shitty alternate computer). Looks awesome.

I expected it to more epic given its theme and development time. With its straightforward layout and gameplay it feels like an interlude before a large, hell-themed boss map (like if you had linked the exit to 5rivers). Nice hellish vibe and style. A pity the skybox in only on the bottom.

Poor lighting. And not mainly because those textures sets (Doom 3 in particular) don't work well with minlight and relatively dim sourced lights, but rather because the .lit file darkens and dulls the contrast, and this even though there is hardly any recognizable colored tint. So I recommend playing the map without the .lit file.

Nothing special about gameplay. It was challenging on Normal, but not very insprired. Again, straightforward and interlude-like. A few Quothisms, but luckily not as hardcore as your earlier maps.

I guess you will have to make another sequel now. ;) 
Huh, weird, there was a .lit file?

/goes and checks again 
When I removed it, I thought the map looked much better. Unfortunately I only realized this after finishing it. 
good map! but of course, there were spots with massive fps droppage and jpl knows the reason. it was pretty much possible to make this map more user friendly and with less vis time!

all in all, proper texture choice and nice gameplay. keep em going, jpl! 
Nice map, I'm still out to lunch on the Doom3 theme in Quake, but it was fun to play.

I used DirectQ so I didn't get any FPS drop. :) 
Thanks ! 
@[Kona]: Thanks, cool you liked the map.

@gb: This is a great a complete feedback ! I can understand your point of view regarding the texture and the lightning: Not all the player will like the use of Doom3/DKT3 texture set... Also the fact the map is "dark" is something I have problems to solve, as it is definitely not dark with my flat screen at home....
I am also happy it gaves you some ideas for mapping: the community needs more map !!
However I spent some time trying to tweak the skill setting (I have to admit I didn't made beta testing with skill setting), and as I know very well the map, I am able to finish it with plenty of Health / Ammos / Armor without that much problem.... anyway, glad you liked it overall

@negke: Well, I thought one moment to teleport the player to "Five Rivers Land" part 1, but as certainely not everybody has it on his HD, I decided to link the map to what you know (no spoiler :P) I can also understand that you were waiting for more epic combat... but as I mentionned, I didn't worked 24h a day during 20 months on this map... rather 2/3 hours a wekk at most.. with some long pause sometimes... Anyway.. I'll do a sequel if you want, but not right now.. I think I'll wait before starting it... as I think I found an idea never explored in Quake... shht, it is a secret :)

@Vondur: I knew you'll like this theme ;) and I really need your advices to reduce vis runtime, definitely :P

@mh: sorry for the Doom3 theme, but I am glad you enjoyed to play :)

@all: I didn't watch the demo yet, but I'll do, I promise ;) Thanks a lot for the review :D 
I did notice you spent time on the skill levels, and it wasn't far off the mark on Easy. It was just a couple encounters that I thought were too hard for an untrained player. I commented on those in the demo, it was mostly fights that involved several gaunts. At the two switches and in the end fight. The rest was OK for easy skill, maybe 2-3 more health packs next time.

That's just regarding Easy skill specifically. 
gb what the hell are you on easy skill for? lol

I didn't mind the textures, but then I have a softspot for dkt textures. There could have been a bit more detail in some places, but otherwise not too bad. The end arena though was in need of something epic. Since you spend more time in this room than any other, it could have taken advantage of having some massive subterranean castle entrance.

The lighting didn't effect me too much either, playing in darkplaces. I've played much darker maps. I was using the .lit file as well I think. 
Why's Hell That Hard 
I tried to play the level, but I'm a really bad player with Quoth monsters. Of course I felt of the rocks and jumped on the skybox. A teleporter for recaching would be fine, but I am a much too bad player to get to the first key.

The layout made me think of Rune, and Alice. A great level to explore, as I saw here are five secrets. But I didn't stand a chance to find them as the low health made me change to easy.

Without much luck, but a good map to play some time on.

Thanx jpl! 
> gb what the hell are you on easy skill for? lol

Out of interest and because newer q1sp tend to be impossibly hard (this one isn't though).

I'll replay this on higher skill settings and look for the secrets later.

There are quite some players who need an Easy skill level or just want to take a look around without dying all the time.

Try giving Quake to a friend who doesn't usually play FPS. You will be surprised. What you think is easy is Hard for others.

Easy skill is necessary even today. 
I full agree with Kona. I consider myself a pretty good Quake player, I;ve played Quake since 1996 until now, it is my favorite game.

In 98-99 I was quite good in multiplayer, I played in various clans in QW, so I'm not at all a "noob".

And even myself I find almost all new maps very hard even on easy skill. Damn it, is it so difficult to make a map fell EASY on easy ?

There's FOUR difficulty skills, nobody prevents a mapper to make the map IMPOSSIBLE on nightmare - I don' care. And very, very hard on hard. It's fine. And make it enjoyable on normal, not too hard, not too easy.

But DAMN IT - make the map EASY on easy. EASY I say. I played a lot on map on easy and there was times like this :

I enter in a room with nothing more than a shotgun and no armor. And all doors closes and 7-8 fiends jumps at me. How the f*ck is that possible on easy ? 
there are only three difficulty skills the mapper has control over -- nightmare is the same as hard except with different monster AI. 
Great Map 
I hadn't played "Castle of the Dark Ages" so I downloaded it first and played them both.

Two great maps. And this time I gotta say they were not too hard on skill 0. I used save/load but didn't have to load more than 2 times per map. I'm more into modern/tech stuff than medival/gothic but the atmosphere in these 2 maps was great. The church with those great windows in the first map and the broken room (shown on the 1st screenie above) in the 2nd map were my favorite spots design-wise.

Castle of the Dark Ages: 31:32, 2/4, 124/125.
The Gateway to Hell: 13:56, 2/5, 71/73.

It was great fun, thanks! 
I don't mean to give an impression of negativity over the Doom 3 texturing by the way; I actually *am* quite fond of the style. Just that it's quite jarring to see it in Quake, even with fair warning beforehand.

I'd say that of the Doom 3 textured maps I've played, this one probably comes close to the top in terms of style and appeal. You've hit on a theme here that works quite well with that texture set (rather than just throwing on Doom 3 textures because you can) which is nice to see. 
Texture set __is__ gorgeous... best in ages.
Nice mix of enemy too. Damn - only two out of five secrets. 
I Did What #22 Did 
If you have the time, replay CDA and then play this immediately after. It goes from "two very good Q1SP maps" into an awesome mini-campaign. The atmosphere is super thick, and the jump from a classic id1 affair (CDA) into a primarily Quoth map (this) is perfectly justified by the theme. The gameplay is slightly different though the pace remains similar.

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