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What would you consider is the best user generated episode made by the community?  "Hail to the King, baby!"

User is offline   jkas789 

#1

So yesterday our Boomer Lord and Saviour Civvie 11 dropped this shit on youtube:




And while watching the video, it got my noggin joggin. Is there a user generated episode so great, so fantastic that it could be confused for a official expansion? Blood has Death Wish (apparently), so Duke must have something right? And what about Shadow Warrior? There must be something there to tide us over until Deadly Kiss finally comes out right?

WHAT ABOUT REDNECK RAMP---!!

https://www.netanimations.net/Laughing-chimp-gif-animation.gif


So in the spirit of highlighting the best the Build community has to offer, post that which you consider the cream of the crop!
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User is offline   Mark 

#2

WGR and AMC series. I haven't played enough of the other recent releases besides them so I can't give a good review.

This post has been edited by Mark: 15 October 2020 - 05:33 PM

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User is online   Jimmy 

  • 1776 World Wide

#3

Except neither of those fit the scope specified in this thread.
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User is offline   Ninety-Six 

#4

My vote would probably go towards either Metropolitan Mayhem or Duke Hard. MM may be outside the scope since it was a half-speedmapping project but I thoroughly enjoyed the results anyway. I guess Duke Hard would be the more well-rounded choice, since that was strictly limited to one mapper per entry, and while still working within a spacial restriction the results are quality.
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User is offline   VGA 

#5

What about that Duke Forever mod for eduke32? Isn't it kinda like an official expansion or semi-sequel? (I haven't played it yet)
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User is offline   jkas789 

#6

View PostNinety-Six, on 15 October 2020 - 05:55 PM, said:

My vote would probably go towards either Metropolitan Mayhem or Duke Hard. MM may be outside the scope since it was a half-speedmapping project but I thoroughly enjoyed the results anyway. I guess Duke Hard would be the more well-rounded choice, since that was strictly limited to one mapper per entry, and while still working within a spatial restriction the results are quality.


I have not yet played MM but I have played Duke Hard. At first my mind went to DH however I'm kinda conflicted because I thought it could have been better. Good episode though.


Quote

What about that Duke Forever mod for eduke32?


I mean could it? I recently played it and IMO it could have been so much better. I think I have to replay it with a more objective eye, maybe I was expecting too much of it.
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User is online   Jimmy 

  • 1776 World Wide

#7

I don't think so. None of these really feel like what Death Wish does, take the original game and expand upon what's already there. Like Civvie says, DW has very little in the way of new resources. There aren't a lot of modern Duke mods that really fit this idea. You'd have to dig into late 90s, early 2000s stuff really. For whatever reason not a lot of projects tend to tread the same ground as Duke 3D. Even mods that include Duke/the Duke universe like AMC or Alien Armageddon just go off into other directions that make them very different from the base game.
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User is online   Danukem 

  • Duke Plus Developer

#8

View Postjkas789, on 15 October 2020 - 04:09 PM, said:

Is there a user generated episode so great, so fantastic that it could be confused for a official expansion?


The question is flawed because it already assumes that resembling an official expansion is the definition of being "great" or "fantastic" as if that were not achievable in different styles or with new ideas. This inevitably leads to pointless bickering because some people will read the "great, so fantastic" part and others will read the "official expansion" part and these lead to different answers.
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User is offline   jkas789 

#9

View PostDanukem, on 15 October 2020 - 10:19 PM, said:

The question is flawed because it already assumes that resembling an official expansion is the definition of being "great" or "fantastic" as if that were not achievable in different styles or with new ideas. This inevitably leads to pointless bickering because some people will read the "great, so fantastic" part and others will read the "official expansion" part and these lead to different answers.


That is absolutely true. I'll change the original post to reflect that. GO with something along the lines of what Jimmy said: "Best user made episode take the original game and expand upon what's already there"

Actually, I would if I could. Is there any way to change the OP?

This post has been edited by jkas789: 15 October 2020 - 11:42 PM

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User is online   Danukem 

  • Duke Plus Developer

#10

Let's just take it as read that the question has been adjusted. I don't really want to invalidate the thread replies up to this point by editing the OP.
Also...I didn't mean to sound so critical. It's just that I have seen this identical misunderstanding come up so many times over the years.
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User is offline   jkas789 

#11

Naa don't worry about it dude. Besides it is a valid criticism that helps narrow down the options.
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User is online   Aleks 

#12

I haven't played many new episodes, but if we're taking about expanding upon the original game, I'd have to go with Roch and Red series. I know they are not (or at least they weren't released us such) strictly episodes, but rather series of maps, but they do follow a very specific theme and kind of link (hell, Roch even had a "secret level"!). Merlijn's current "Shaky Grounds" series actually also feel like kind of a natural successor to Red series, with different environments, but same heavy use of gloomy atmosphere and "horror" elements. Also WG Space episode. They all used just vanilla game assets, so they ultimately still "looked like Duke", but pushed the boundaries of how far a user map can go. I might be a little biased here, as in general I prefer playing standalone user levels than TC's and also tend to appreciate level design above other aspects of modding.

Hell, the final Roch 8 was released 17 (!) years ago, but the series still remains a benchmark in terms of good level design and probably there are more quality user maps inspired by Roch and going into that direction than the ones going for original game look (*cough* Dogville *cough*).
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#13

Metropolitan Mayhem - no. The first few levels were intentionally bad, in fact, when I first played the first map, I thought this will be a joke episode. Later on it gets better, in fact, a lot better, some maps like Meat Ball Sub Makin' were really good, but they were very different to the original style with their all over the place use of monsters and details.

Duke Hard - again, no. Some maps like Abstractech or Construction Deconstruction (if I remember the title right) are very good, but the quality was as uneven as you typical mapset with too many authors. Also the episode didn't really progress, most levels (except the first two and the last) can be easily swapped.

Number 2 rule (rule means my opinion, but I guess big bosses would agree with this) for a commercial Duke-style episode to have fewer designers (two or three at most), because that guarantees a consistent style and consistent quality. Both MM and DH breached this rule.

Number 1 of course is the proper use of the original assets as a base, and this is where WGR, AMC TC and others fail. While something like Caribbean (which was in fact a third party commercial release) can go through despite the change of some monster and weapon graphics, a new TC with totally different undukish gameplay shouldn't be even mentioned. If you breach this, it's an autmatic disqualification.

And for the record: number 3 rule IMHO is the episode must have some kind of an expansion of the original assets, ie. new enemies and weapons, or new ideas, new theme, new graphics, that fit well with the original, but still keeps the IP fresh (this is a very subjective but important rule as the episode shouldn't bust just your average generic drug like DTWID for Doom or Fernando Marquez's stull, at least the first two episodes for Duke).

Number 4 rule is everything new must be built from scratch, not ripped from other games, maybe LameDuke, other Duke beta art and free sound archive stuff can be exempted. I'm fed up with stuff like SW, HL, Doom, Quake whatever elements in Duke maps and vice versa (ie. badly adapted Duke stuff in Sergeant Mark's Doom episodes). These elements were built for a different game and for a different purpose. Mixing these up usually ends with a hodjpodj of a game.

Number 5 is the episode must be playable by a larger group, than the hardcore community, so it isn't ultra-difficult or confusing (in layout etc). This is an overlooked aspect, but important. Few people play these games regularly, in fact, most of them didn't touch it for years, so it should have a special appeal.

It's quite tempting to say Last Reaction and Water Bases episode 2 (and some of episode 1) was pretty close back in 1999. It used the core game as a base, it was made by one person with (after the first few levels) consistent quality, it expanded the game with elements, albeit most of the new stuff were LameDuke based, and it had an appeal for a larger group I guess. However that's not totally true: despite the extra 25% health you got (which was actually a foreboding sign for the difficulty), the episodes are much harder than all the commercial ones, especially the drone boss (which was extremely memorable, but also frustrating), also the episodes copied stuff from the original game a tad bit too often, when level 2 for example is a soft remake or homage to Dark Side, and the maps themselves copy each other too often (if you look closely, many maps reused rooms from other maps of the episode, particularly in episode 2, where the drone levels often used parts of the water base levels. Also there was way too much of the same, some levels were blended together in the first half of episode 2.

But still, that was the closest thing I remember. Not sure about DNF 2013, it copied a lot from the actual DNF, tracks from other games, and set pieces from the trailers often were in awkward places and sound compression wasn't that good. It definitely wouldn't have been greenlighted as something commercial despite the high quality design, and the very well made new monsters.

I have yet to play Fernando Marquez' last two episodes. According to Mikko, they are not copypasta as the first two, but honestly I don't have high expectations (no offense).

This post has been edited by The Watchtower: 16 October 2020 - 05:59 AM

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#14

View PostAleks, on 16 October 2020 - 01:38 AM, said:

I haven't played many new episodes, but if we're taking about expanding upon the original game, I'd have to go with Roch and Red series. I know they are not (or at least they weren't released us such) strictly episodes, but rather series of maps, but they do follow a very specific theme and kind of link (hell, Roch even had a "secret level"!). Merlijn's current "Shaky Grounds" series actually also feel like kind of a natural successor to Red series, with different environments, but same heavy use of gloomy atmosphere and "horror" elements. Also WG Space episode. They all used just vanilla game assets, so they ultimately still "looked like Duke", but pushed the boundaries of how far a user map can go. I might be a little biased here, as in general I prefer playing standalone user levels than TC's and also tend to appreciate level design above other aspects of modding.

Hell, the final Roch 8 was released 17 (!) years ago, but the series still remains a benchmark in terms of good level design and probably there are more quality user maps inspired by Roch and going into that direction than the ones going for original game look (*cough* Dogville *cough*).


Yes, these didn't breach the rules I mentioned in the previous post, but still.... I think my problem with them is overdetailing. Yes, overdetailing (fake doors, sprites that block moves, irrelevant banners, etc) was a problem in World Tour as well, particularly in Levelord's levels, but not on the same level what Roch, Red etc. done. Roch also had the problem of (maybe a Number 6 rule) repeating itself too often. Basically you can't tell the difference between ie. Roch 2 and Roch 5. The only distinct parts were Roch 6's outside part, the giant flyover road, and Roch 8's alien ship part. Then mansion in Roch 4 was fine back then but when I replayed it, it didn't age well. Also Roch didn't have a narrative what the levels really want to show, gameplay is as generic as possible with no thought behind monster placement, and details were over the top. It did have a strong influence on the community, so I don't want to be mean with it, but really, for strictly subjective reasons I can't see it as an official episode, even with a final level.

As for Red, I think my biggest issue other than the unnecessary overdetailing and overcolouring is that those set pieces, like the horror sounds are only working for once or twice, but these things age poorly because they appear at the same place all the time, so the horror appeal is gone after a few plays. Also, I remember when Red 3 came out, it was a jawdropping experience, the horror elements were intuitive and the map played very well, and actually didn't age badly due to its atmosphere. Since the map was so good, Merlijn started overusing these elements in his other maps. He shouldn't have actually, the experience got inflated and the next two maps were just half of what Red 3 was. He is still using these elements in his new, Shaking Grounds episode, but honestly, it should be gone by now.

While these opinions feel a bit mean, I still think (and thank to the authors) it was awesome these episodes were made. Both Roch and Red had a gargantual influence on Duke's communtiy legacy, and they are very playable and fun, they are just not commercial in their style.

This post has been edited by The Watchtower: 16 October 2020 - 06:20 AM

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User is offline   Fox 

  • Fraka kaka kaka kaka-kow!

#15

My favorites are still:

  • Water Based from LR&WB
  • ADG Episode
  • Daikarin


They are super fun to play, and the design stays true to Duke 3D.
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User is online   Sanek 

#16

FMX episodes 2-4 is the one of the best user-made episodes I've ever played. It follows the original's maps as closely as possible.

I don't like that people's bashing Episode 2, as I think that every single map is expertly designed and the entire episode looks like it was scrapped from Lunar Apocalypse at the last second.

The only negative is the Episode 1, which was made when Fernando's just starting. If only it was made on same level as the rest of his episodes, the whole FMX pack could be considered as the ultimate user-made episode.

________________________

And yeah, even though we saw a good amount of excellent episodes and TC's over the years, none of them can be called a true-to-its-roots Duke Nukem expierence. With all respect to these pieces of work and it's authors, they almost always show the author's vision and style, instead of making the "user-made episode for Duke3D" it's "Bob Averill's map series.
Sometimes I think that something was lost when we jumped from crappy shovelware maps to ultra-designed levels...
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User is online   Phredreeke 

#17

View PostThe Watchtower, on 16 October 2020 - 05:54 AM, said:

Number 2 rule (rule means my opinion, but I guess big bosses would agree with this) for a commercial Duke-style episode to have fewer designers (two or three at most), because that guarantees a consistent style and consistent quality. Both MM and DH breached this rule.

Number 1 of course is the proper use of the original assets as a base, and this is where WGR, AMC TC and others fail. While something like Caribbean (which was in fact a third party commercial release) can go through despite the change of some monster and weapon graphics, a new TC with totally different undukish gameplay shouldn't be even mentioned. If you breach this, it's an autmatic disqualification.

And for the record: number 3 rule IMHO is the episode must have some kind of an expansion of the original assets, ie. new enemies and weapons, or new ideas, new theme, new graphics, that fit well with the original, but still keeps the IP fresh (this is a very subjective but important rule as the episode shouldn't bust just your average generic drug like DTWID for Doom or Fernando Marquez's stull, at least the first two episodes for Duke).


So you've set up your rules so nothing qualifies? Including Duke it out in DC.
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#18

View PostFox, on 16 October 2020 - 06:54 AM, said:

My favorites are still:

  • Water Based from LR&WB
  • ADG Episode
  • Daikarin


They are super fun to play, and the design stays true to Duke 3D.


I forgot Daikarin, that was great, although the monster variety after the second level should have been more interesting. It's very close to Duke indeed.
ADG too. Again, the monster placement was the low point (the 4th level was actually pretty good at this), and it should have used more ambient sounds, but the design was awesome and I love Ale's easy to follow layouts and sense of place.

This post has been edited by The Watchtower: 16 October 2020 - 08:10 AM

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#19

View PostPhredreeke, on 16 October 2020 - 08:02 AM, said:

So you've set up your rules so nothing qualifies? Including Duke it out in DC.


DC, Caribbean and PnP definitely qualify.

This post has been edited by The Watchtower: 16 October 2020 - 08:05 AM

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User is online   Phredreeke 

#20

Quote

the episode must have some kind of an expansion of the original assets, ie. new enemies and weapons, or new ideas, new theme, new graphics


No new enemies or weapons. Is "based on real locations" sufficient of a new theme to qualify?
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User is offline   jkas789 

#21

View PostFox, on 16 October 2020 - 06:54 AM, said:


[*] Daikarin

They are super fun to play, and the design stays true to Duke 3D.


Oh I had forgotten about Daikarin! I agree with you, it does feel true to the Duke 3D design, though I would still argue it is not quite there.

Quote

And yeah, even though we saw a good amount of excellent episodes and TC's over the years, none of them can be called a true-to-its-roots Duke Nukem expierence. With all respect to these pieces of work and it's authors, they almost always show the author's vision and style, instead of making the "user-made episode for Duke3D" it's "Bob Averill's map series.
Sometimes I think that something was lost when we jumped from crappy shovelware maps to ultra-designed levels...


I have not played all there is that the community has to offer however that is the feeling that I get as well. Like just from the user maps I have played there is a clear and noticeable jump from beginner maps and Duke 3D like maps to ultra detailed ultra big maps that'll take you a good half an hour to figure out IMO.
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User is online   Aleks 

#22

View PostThe Watchtower, on 16 October 2020 - 06:17 AM, said:

Yes, these didn't breach the rules I mentioned in the previous post, but still.... I think my problem with them is overdetailing. Yes, overdetailing (fake doors, sprites that block moves, irrelevant banners, etc) was a problem in World Tour as well, particularly in Levelord's levels, but not on the same level what Roch, Red etc. done. Roch also had the problem of (maybe a Number 6 rule) repeating itself too often. Basically you can't tell the difference between ie. Roch 2 and Roch 5. The only distinct parts were Roch 6's outside part, the giant flyover road, and Roch 8's alien ship part. Then mansion in Roch 4 was fine back then but when I replayed it, it didn't age well. Also Roch didn't have a narrative what the levels really want to show, gameplay is as generic as possible with no thought behind monster placement, and details were over the top. It did have a strong influence on the community, so I don't want to be mean with it, but really, for strictly subjective reasons I can't see it as an official episode, even with a final level.

As for Red, I think my biggest issue other than the unnecessary overdetailing and overcolouring is that those set pieces, like the horror sounds are only working for once or twice, but these things age poorly because they appear at the same place all the time, so the horror appeal is gone after a few plays. Also, I remember when Red 3 came out, it was a jawdropping experience, the horror elements were intuitive and the map played very well, and actually didn't age badly due to its atmosphere. Since the map was so good, Merlijn started overusing these elements in his other maps. He shouldn't have actually, the experience got inflated and the next two maps were just half of what Red 3 was. He is still using these elements in his new, Shaking Grounds episode, but honestly, it should be gone by now.

While these opinions feel a bit mean, I still think (and thank to the authors) it was awesome these episodes were made. Both Roch and Red had a gargantual influence on Duke's communtiy legacy, and they are very playable and fun, they are just not commercial in their style.


I can understand your point of view, but I don't agree with the guidelines and rules you're setting here, as Phredreeke mentioned. I think "expanding" the Duke universe means more than just copying the original level's classic style, but rather doing things that were impossible back then. Even WT levels are far more detailed than original ones, although made by the same authors (and yes, I've seen you complaining about Levelord's ones in other posts :P ). For instance, I love the original episodes, but I don't wanna replay Red Light District all over again in new, generic incarnations. From what I remember, Fakir tried doing the maps in classic style, also I've always viewed Mikko's style as very much classic-inspired. But level design is a largely creative process, so it should be about realising one's own vision - and thus about evolving, not keeping to tradition.

And such evolution's milestones were mostly Bob Averill's series (along with Alejandro Glavic's hi-tech/industrial stuff, from where one branch of levels evolved) and Roch series (which took a completely new approach on city levels). Both of these set up kind of benchmark in terms of level design and detailing, the original levels were largely underdetailed due to performance issues. It's fun for me to play more classic styled or older, "96's style" maps from time to time, but the ones that are actually remarkable and which I remember are these which involve something new, whether it's brilliant design, new gameplay type, innovative effects and ideas. For example, I haven't replayed Roch in like 5-7 years I guess (in general I rarely replay levels), but I still have very clear image of some of its key points (Roch 4 being my favourite I think, with "non-linear" gameplay at the beginning, then the awesome mansion, which I still deeply love).

Also not sure how you define "commercial" here - DZ2 was "commercial" after all for example. On the other hand, I'd easily pay for Roch episode if it was released as a commercial game, also I think it would be one of the first things I'd show to someone not familiar with Duke to get their interest in the game.
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User is offline   Merlijn 

#23

Pretty much agree with what Alex is saying. :)

The roch series is the best candidate in my opinion. I replayed them recently and they hold up quite well.
Yes it's more detailled and realistic looking than the original game, but it does have that same sense of exploration (there are tons of secrects and hunting for them is fun). Plus the combat is nice and varied.

ADG looks closer to the original game, but upon replaying it I found the gameplay to be quite repetitive. Ale sure loves his shotgun action.
The water bases episode hasn't aged that well if I'm being honest.

Red was its own thing, I'm not going to claim I was going for a commercial approach.
It was basically me letting my creativity and imagination running wild. for better or worse.

Shaky Grounds will be more accessible to a wider audience once it's done (I think). And it will be released as an episode.
So maaaybe some people will concider that a worthy successor, if I'm really lucky.
We'll see. I know the watchtower will find something to complain about no matter what I do. ;)
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User is online   ck3D 

#24

View PostSanek, on 16 October 2020 - 07:50 AM, said:

With all respect to these pieces of work and it's authors, they almost always show the author's vision and style, instead of making the "user-made episode for Duke3D" it's "Bob Averill's map series.


That's just totally normal though, give a creative tool to people and they'll be creative with it. People create according to their vision, Levelord and Blum had their respective styles just like every mapper is bound to develop theirs, they just happened to be the originals. What's to retain from their work isn't the specific styles or the aesthetics themselves but the science and logic they put into their level design.

In mapping, sticking to the Duke 3D universe is only a possibility, you can also choose to submit your own take on it and on how it can be tweaked and expanded similarly to how you can use a canvas to paint a photorealistic or abstract painting. I'd suggest that creators who mostly release user maps will generally be more inclined to go that experimental route as their releases are then meant to be one-off pieces with only the potential of bearing their own context, so because of the restricted focus it's tempting to extrapolate the universe more than it would be for maps that are meant for an episode that's more likely to try and feel canonic (at least within itself). I don't think a lot of people who technically 'make maps for Duke 3D' would agree with that designation more than they would to be regarded as creatives who use Duke 3D as a base to make playable levels. Now, aligning yourself with whichever Duke 3D tradition (be it the design style or aesthetics) can be a conscious choice of direction, and usually a wise and cool one, it's not exactly mandatory though.

Also one thing to keep in mind is how the original level designers were by definition the ones who got and used all the textures for the first time, many assets from the game e.g.. the neon signs looked fresh there because they were literally designed to complement specific levels and worked with them in ways so seamless and functional it's totally symbiotic, ever since then all user mappers have been able to do (without resorting to new .art) has been reinterpreting and repurposing those assets, which takes a certain level of creativity and logic to do right.

My personal favorites in terms of feel:

- DaikariN is an excellent pick;

- I always thought DNF 2013 captured then boosted the atmosphere of the original Duke 3D pretty well, some moments were a bit too much but in general the level design worked for me (my favorites being the first map and Mikko's take on Hoover Dam) and always especially liked how the new art blended in with the old, it didn't feel too gimmicky (maybe until the last boss) which it easily could have due to the theme; in the end it could easily pass off as an official expansion of the base tile set (the same way 1.4/1.5 edition textures did, maybe even better than them);

- as a kid Duke It Out in DC felt traditional and professional to me (granted I haven't replayed it in forever), but that's probably because I used to play it a lot, probably just as much as the original episodes if not more, and I found out about it pretty early on back when the game altogether was still rather fresh so in a way that one was closely tied to the discovery of Duke 3D to me, to the point where it almost blends into the official timeline. The Lincoln memorial level in particular especially left a strong impression on me at the time with those massive structures and columns.

This post has been edited by ck3D: 16 October 2020 - 11:03 AM

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User is online   Jimmy 

  • 1776 World Wide

#25

I think it's really funny, and telling, that people can't grasp the idea of the thread. It's so obvious that Roch and Red series take the game in a different direction, that's why they're so memorable. They don't expand on anything Duke3D did, they do new things.

Daikirin and ADG are excellent examples.
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#26

View PostMerlijn, on 16 October 2020 - 08:56 AM, said:

Pretty much agree with what Alex is saying. :)

The roch series is the best candidate in my opinion. I replayed them recently and they hold up quite well.
Yes it's more detailled and realistic looking than the original game, but it does have that same sense of exploration (there are tons of secrects and hunting for them is fun). Plus the combat is nice and varied.

ADG looks closer to the original game, but upon replaying it I found the gameplay to be quite repetitive. Ale sure loves his shotgun action.
The water bases episode hasn't aged that well if I'm being honest.

Red was its own thing, I'm not going to claim I was going for a commercial approach.
It was basically me letting my creativity and imagination running wild. for better or worse.

Shaky Grounds will be more accessible to a wider audience once it's done (I think). And it will be released as an episode.
So maaaybe some people will concider that a worthy successor, if I'm really lucky.
We'll see. I know the watchtower will find something to complain about no matter what I do. ;)


Well, I'm quite sure I will play the episodic Shaky Grounds very early after the release. I still didn't try AMC TC (saw a few videos) and Alien Armageddon. I saw the tremendous effort behind them and some stuff I saw looked wonderful, but somehow they felt too ""glued"" to my liking, I mean too many different games met unnecessarily. But maybe I will try them as well one day.
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#27

What about JJ Duke 3d episode 3? Did anyone try that one? Episode 1 was garbage (actually it was made by Jonathon Fowler himself), episode 2 and 3 were by Jason Bredhauer, who also made some levels for a James Bond TC which only had some maps in the end. Episode 2 had three space levels (the third one was a buggy unfinished one though) and 1 very good looking city one with a fire station and an overlord. Episode 3 followed suit and had various cities, albeit most stuff were inspired by classic Duke. The second level really captured the essence of Hollywood Holocaust IMHO. The shadows were great, and the advanced use of Shadow Warrior's city sounds did help, although it was a tad bit too much. The maps don't always look great, but IMHO it has a point, what kind of levels we talk about.

This post has been edited by The Watchtower: 16 October 2020 - 01:34 PM

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User is offline   MetHy 

#28

Death Wish is very high quality, I love it; but I disagree in saying it could be confused for an official expansion in the sense that certain design elements have a completely different mindset compared to what you'd find in 90's Build expansions.

Some classic design elements like the thematic consistency (one level=one theme) and the interconnected layouts are indeed present in most levels. Other design elements in DW however show either a more modern sensibility or a more deeply rooted sense of author's style (like the story elements, the way effects are used, even the sensibility with enemy use and placement, and also the heavy inspiration from other materials at times like with the Silent Hill levels).

Now, there is nothing wrong with any of that. Bloatoid has a great style; my point is I don't think he ever intended to make something that could pass as an official 90's expansion. He just did his own thing that transcends through the codes of any time period.

In order to find something that could feel as close to Duke It Out In DC or Suckin' Grits On Route 66 as possible one would probably have to look at stuff made in the 90's indeed, before the influence of the next generation of video games became too strong.

This post has been edited by MetHy: 17 October 2020 - 12:21 AM

1

#29

Doom's Sigil and NRFTL, also the E1M4/M8 remakes are typical examples of how to nail this thing right. All of them are based on classic aesthetics, but also evolved it and felt fresh and modern.

In the case of Duke, WT's Golden Carnage did this thing right, the map felt like a lost level of LA Meltdown, only the crappy fireflies remind you it's a new thing, luckily they only appear in one area. Mirage Barrage is close too, but the exotic theme would have been out of place a bit back then.

This post has been edited by The Watchtower: 17 October 2020 - 12:34 AM

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User is online   oasiz 

  • Dr. Effector

#30

This almost calls for a community(?) project where the goal wouldn't necessarily be creating an episode centered around one set theme but more about creating a "journey" across and attempting to relay the feel of the original story arc.
Making a classic map isn't too rough but it will require some rigorous direction so that things get used properly, there is a set guideline that guarantee many less used usermap things like actually interactable lights (switches & breakable).

I wonder what would be the best approach.. perhaps grinding blockouts and detail passes in a bit more lock-step manner.
It's harder to pull off when it gives designers less liberty do what they want, but it also would make sure that maps don't go overboard on some specific niche.
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