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Duke Map/Mod of the Month Club - June 2021  "Let's hope it will last!"

User is offline   Aleks 

#1

An idea to start a "Duke monthly map club" was discussed ironically in the "Duke Nukem is dead" thread (starting here) and it met with positive response, so I guess it's time to finally start doing stuff instead of just talking. Since it's a new month and all, I guess it's a good time to start with this thing: Duke Map/Mod of the Month Club. Credits to FistMarine for the idea - to better explain what we mean here, I'll be blatantly ripping basing on the Doom Megawad Club principles, which are listed below:


What's this thing?
We play through a set of maps/mods during the month, and use this thread to discuss it as we're still all fresh with our comments/opinions/feelings about the maps.

What's the purpose?
Basically, there are 4 purposes:
  • Showcasing some of the older mods/maps to wider public - they definitely deserve the attention!
  • Getting more people to actually enjoy and appreciate the user content - because let's be honest, over the past 25 years this was really what kept Duke alive after all.
  • ...and while we're at it - keeping Duke alive by still enjoying it, as there's no new games in the franchise on the horizon (and let's be honest, they wouldn't be as good as some of this stuff!).
  • Having a more structurized discussion on maps than what's going in "Last map you played" thread - which is great, but it's basically a monologue most of the time.

Can I join?
Sure, as long as you find some spare time during the month to play the stuff that's on the table!

Why a month?
Because people have lives, jobs or other stuff to do (like mapping). For smaller maps, this could be shorter time - it's all up to debate in the future!

What port should I use? Are mods allowed? Where to get the maps?
It's entirely up to you how you play the game, so you can use whatever port or mod allowed - it would be cool to state in your posts what you're using too, as there might be some slight differences between the ports! As for the maps, they should be always linked within the first post.

How should I play the maps or post about them?
Again, it's up to you. You can finish them all in one go or play them one by one whenever you feel like. On Doom forums, there's a rule that you should keep the pace by not posting about a map that has a higher number than the day of the month, so e.g. on 6th you shouldn't post about map 7 etc. I think that might be a good practice if there's a large interest in this, but first let's see how active the thread is for a start - so if there's nothing going on, feel free to post about whatever map you want to.

As the first thing to play, Roch series by Pascal Rouaud has been chosen!

Synopsis:
Roch is a creme de la creme of Duke's city maps. Created by an actual architect (currently a professor of architecture), they basically invented a new trend in Duke mapping, focusing on creative trimming and use of textures and well structured, believable urban locations with classic gameplay spiced up by some more open world key hunting mechanics. During the early 2000s, every cool kid wanted to make maps like Pascal, which is understandable. It should be noted all of these maps are made with "old" Build restrictions, which might seem insane seeing the scope of the later maps. The series consists of 8 maps + one bonus secret map, which are presented below.

Roch 1
Attached Image: duke0015.png
MSDN review: https://msdn.duke4.net/hotroch.php (Score: 89)
CGS review: http://www.scent-88....R/roch/roch.php (Score: 93)

Roch 2
Attached Image: duke0017.png
MSDN review: https://msdn.duke4.net/hotroch2.php (Score: 92)
CGS review: http://www.scent-88.com/reviews/R/roch2/roch2.php (Score: 94)

Roch 3
Attached Image: duke0018.png
MSDN review: https://msdn.duke4.net/hotroch3.php (Score: 92)
CGS review: http://www.scent-88.com/reviews/R/roch3/roch3.php (Score: 91)

Roch Secret 1
Attached Image: duke0028.png
MSDN review: https://msdn.duke4.net/hotrochsc1.php (Score: 89)
CGS review: http://www.scent-88.com/reviews/R/rochsc1/rochsc1.php (Score: 89)

Roch 4
Attached Image: duke0019.png
MSDN review: https://msdn.duke4.net/hotroch4.php (Score: 93)
CGS review: http://www.scent-88.com/reviews/R/roch4/roch4.php (Score: 95)

Roch 5
Attached Image: duke0020.png
MSDN review: https://msdn.duke4.net/hotroch5.php (Score: 93)
CGS review: http://www.scent-88.com/reviews/R/roch5/roch5.php (Score: 96)

Roch 6
Attached Image: duke0021.png
MSDN review: https://msdn.duke4.net/hotroch6.php (Score: 94)
CGS review: http://www.scent-88.com/reviews/R/roch6/roch6.php (Score: 96)

Roch 7
Attached Image: duke0022.png
MSDN review: https://msdn.duke4.net/hotroch7.php (Score: 96)
CGS review: http://www.scent-88.com/reviews/R/roch7/roch7.php (Score: 98)

Roch 8
Attached Image: duke0023.png
MSDN review: https://msdn.duke4.net/hotroch8.php (Score: 99)
CGS review: http://www.scent-88.com/reviews/R/roch8/roch8.php (Score: 99)

Where to get these maps:
It seems the links on MSDN are broken and downloading from CGS can be a bit tricky with its limits, so here's more sources:
Roch 1-4 + Roch SC1

Roch 5-8

Alternatively, they are a part of NightFright's Addon Compilation, which can be downloaded here: https://forums.duke4...on-compilation/ and played as an episode.

Alternatively, for your convenience I have packed all the files together and attached them to the post. I have changed the names of the files that would be the same across different maps (mostly text with "Polls", which I believe are no longer valid, but I added them for completion), also changed the names of bonus music files which are provided for Roch 4 and Roch 7 to the respective titles of their maps (if not using Eduke32, rename them back to dethtoll.mid).

Edit: Someone please edit the typo in the topic title! :P

Attached File(s)

  • Attached File  Roch.rar (946.76K)
    Number of downloads: 76

11

User is offline   jkas789 

#2

Awesome to see this happening and I will totally be joining this. Even if I have shit taste lol.
1

User is offline   Ninety-Six 

#3

I was planning a Roch replay in the near future anyway, so sure why not.
1

User is offline   Merlijn 

#4

Sounds good, I played most of the Roch maps fairly recently but I have no problem giving them another go! :)
1

User is offline   FistMarine 

#5

Thanks Aleks for creating the topic! I will gladly join the club! I will be playing each map on CGS skill, while getting all kills and secrets, in Duke3D v1.5 in DOSBox 0.74-3.

Introduction

The legendary Roch series. I remember playing them in late 2000s (around 2008-2009 I guess) for first time when I encountered them on Duke's Repository. I had found the site and the screenshots attracted me, as well as the name sounded funny to me and that it was often the last map downloaded when shown in the right bottom corner (any of the Roch maps). I have a few fond memories of them. But I also remember finding them confusing back then. Whenever I would replay them in later years (and even when playing War of Attrition mod years ago, they would sometimes randomly come in the Random Missions episode, at least one of the Roch maps in a single session), I would never be able to find all secrets because some are rather well hidden. But I'm sure most experienced players can find most secrets, maybe even all of them. We will see how well I did and what I think of each map.

Roch

You begin in a small room. Grab the armor and shotgun and shoot the canister to blow up the wall. You will then fight a pig cop that is waiting and there will be other enemies waiting outside as well (such as troopers, sentry drones, etc). A bit of a chaotic start but once you cleared them, grab the goodies around the area. I recommend saving the armor pickups for later. They are plentiful in this map, at least 10 armor pickups in total. Even better that pig cops can also drop used armor, though this is rather rare. There is no point grabbing a new armor when you have around 70-99 points, so wait until it's around half or less. Health should be similarly conserved, though there are water fountains almost everywhere to help you if you somehow manage to run out of health. There are 13 secrets in total, so good luck trying to get them all!

Anyway, once you clear the street and avoid the cars (or jump on them to be taken for a ride), enter the hypermarket. There are some enemies inside (including a Protector Drone that gets revealed upon picking up the Devastator, though he is the only one in the map!) and here you must find the switch that unlocks the restaurant across the street. After finding the switch and activating, make sure to kill the enemies that spawned in the hypermarket. After entering the restaurant, you must find the switch that unlocks the gas station. Once you clear the enemies that are inside the gas station, be prepared to fight a Mini Battlelord (the only one in this map!) who guards the red card. After you took him out, grab the red card and visit the club.

Inside the club, after taking the monsters out, you must find a rather well hidden switch that unlocks the door to the arcade room. I remember not finding this switch the first time I played the map back then and got stuck. There were NO walkthroughs of the map in 2008-2009 or so. To find the switch, look up and you should find it. After clearing the arcade room, you will find the blue card. Go find the blue lock outside and unlock your way to the cinema! Once you clear most enemies, you will see the yellow card is behind a forcefield and you must find a tiny switch to deactivate the forcefield and then you will be able to grab the card.

The yellow card will unlock the exit room. After killing all monsters, go back to find the remaining secrets, because you most likely missed some secrets. Once you found everything, step into the elevator and the level will end!

There is also an unmarked secret. You will notice that there is a darkened wall on the path of the cars. Get inside the car and wait to be driven around, the car will go through the wall and allow you to access some extra supplies. This area doesn't count as a secret. When going back, you don't need to be in a car to go through the wall (it is not visible from the inside), only when you have to enter from outside.

Interestingly, the map took me more than an hour to complete (as I took it a bit slowly, due to vanilla Duke3D keyboard controls) and because of that, the time reset to 0 due to vanilla Duke3D behavior (this is fixed in source ports, like the more than 255 monsters killed bug). So despite saying I finished the map in 2 minutes, it was actually an hour and two minutes. I initially found 8 secrets by myself and later I went to find the remaining 5 with help of Mapster.

Another weird vanilla bug is when finishing the map, it starts Hollywood Holocaust. As if the episode is started from beginning (since user map is in E1L8 slot). I'm not sure why this happens but it's fixed in source ports as well. I think this was a bug that affected FM2X series as well, based on what Fernando Marquez told me many years ago, back in 2011 or so in an email. But I don't remember much about the cause of the ending sector, so if someone knows better, please explain because I don't know all the technical details. Anyway, onto Roch 2!

Roch 2

You begin in the same elevator where the first Roch map ended. It is a nice seamless transition to the next map. I like how in the first area, there is a crane that gets activated when you press the switch and will grab the stuff for you. You must press the switch a few times to have the crane pick up the shotgun shells, pistol ammo and small medkit for you. Very cool! Open the garage door and enter the streets, you will see it's populated by monsters (pig cops, enforcers, etc).

After clearing the outside area of monsters (some of which are located on roofs, be careful of those that are hiding well!), enter the market. You will also fight a Protector Drone (again the only one present in the level!). Eventually you will get inside the restaurant and a few monsters are awaiting you. Some of them are placed inside cramped rooms, so just be careful! And also be careful when opening doors because in cramped spaces, it increases the risk to get squished by a door. Hasn't happened to me but it doesn't hurt to give some advice to take it slowly when inside the buildings...

So anyway, you must press a switch that deactivates a forcefield to the area with the cars. You will see what I mean when you get there! Once you get there, make sure to first get rid of the octabrain and assault commander that are awaiting you! After taking them out, you will notice troopers and pig cops riding the cars that move fast and there is an RPG and a portable medkit in middle! But wait, don't pick them up yet! Those cars are deadly and can squish anyone in their path! So either grab the stuff later or make a save and try grabbing them without getting run over! Don't worry I didn't get run over this time but I remember from years ago that they were deadly.

Make sure you also take out the pig cop tank and an enforcer located on the ledge. Then use your pistol to shoot at a switch and the blue card will get delivered to you! Once you got the card, make your way back on the streets and take care of the newly spawned monsters. Use the card, enter the building and take care of the pig cops in cramped spaces. Also some turrets around the corners above the doors, making for some sneaky surprise attacks when you least expect!

Once you cleared the rooms, take the red card, clear the roofs and visit the other building. More pig cops spawned and are waiting for you near the building where you must use the red card. Repeat for this building until you get the yellow card, which is meant to open the garage and the level exit. Take out the newly spawned octabrain and the monsters that await you near the yellow card lock, behind a window that opens now.

Use the card, take the troopers out and whatever else is inside that room, carefully open the garage and peek around the corner. There are TWO mini battlelords that guard the exit! Once you are done killing them, don't press the nuke button just yet until you are ready. Because there are two turrets behind it, as it's a fake nuke button! Make sure you found all 6 secrets. If not, go find them!

Once ready, jump and let Duke fall until the level will end. As is the case with previous Roch map, finishing it results in being taken to Hollywood Holocaust. At least if you are using the original DOS executable. Yeah, someone had to play the maps in original DOS 1.5 executable, as almost no one else will be doing that.

This map was much shorter than the first Roch map. It shouldn't take you more than 30-40 minutes if you take it slowly, otherwise should take up to 15-20 minutes. I wasted some more time in finding the last two secrets (like was the case with the previous Roch map with the extra 10-15 minutes wasted) as I found only four by myself when I initially reached exit. Not bad! But someone has to collect every secret as they aren't collecting themselves. :lol:

So far it looks like a promising start. I know the rest Roch maps will be even better. I also have some screenshots to share, though I wish I took more and of more interesting locations. Enjoy! :)

Tomorrow I will be doing Roch 3 + Secret Level 1 and Friday I will be doing Roch 4, then I will take a week break until I resume with the remaining four Roch maps.

Attached thumbnail(s)

  • Attached Image: ROCH_1.png
  • Attached Image: ROCH_2.png
  • Attached Image: ROCH_3.png
  • Attached Image: ROCH_4.png
  • Attached Image: ROCH2_1.png
  • Attached Image: ROCH2_2.png
  • Attached Image: ROCH2_3.png
  • Attached Image: ROCH2_4.png


This post has been edited by FistMarine: 02 June 2021 - 09:59 AM

5

User is offline   Aleks 

#6

Wow, FistMarine, you pretty much made a full walkthrough of these levels :D As for Roch taking you to Hollywood Holocaust in DOS, I suppose maps that ended with a 65535 tagged sector instead of nukebutton just did that on default. Anyway, played Roch myself today - using EDuke32 version r9321, Come Get Some skill setting and Stalker set as the music (which actually fit well, considering there's the cinema/theater). Managed to find all 13 secrets and only 1 required me to really get out of my way looking for it (the one with elevator). The map took me about 39 minutes to complete. Here's some comments:

  • This one definitely stands-out aesthetically from other Roch maps due to being pretty basic, although I dig how big and interconnected it is.
  • Carousel and roundabout with cars driving around seem to be the most iconic locations from this map, despite not being really showcased within the gameplay/progression. I also really like how you have to use a car to be able to access the roundabout area with some goodies!
  • There's a bunch of annoyingly cramped areas with commanders thrown in, the biggest offender being the arcade room in bar, which has only a tight corridor leading to it and you're immediately welcome by a commander and a bunch of enforcers/pig cops. Also some swing doors make the passages a bit annoying, especially in the restaurant.
  • I really like how you could operate the curtains, lights and projector inside the cinema with various switches. Also there's been lots of rooms with lightswitches, something that seems to be dying art along with mapping evolution in early 2000s.
  • The trimming and outside architecture is definitely weaker than in further maps, which is of course understandable. The building with most interesting architecture seems to be the last one with yellow key lock. Also the road passage under the central building block is interesting.
  • As for interiors, I get the feeling that main restaurant room is the closest one texture-wise to what Pascal did in his further maps. Also the locker rooms in the theater are worth noting for the use of vertically stretched pixels to create a "new" texture with stripes, something which is often used in Pascal's subsequent levels.
  • The secrets were usually well marked and not too obscure, but did require some observation skills from the player, which is how it should be done.
  • As for effects, besides the driving cars and carousel, the biggest highlight was probably the helicopter take-off.
  • Something I've never noticed before, but the beginning of Roch series, conciously or not, bears a resemblance to how Hollywood Holocaust started - we are given some time to take a look around (in this case via viewscreen) and have to blow up the C9s to progress.
  • One more complaint - I personally hated the frequency at which this map utilises sentry drones, especially at the beginning :P
  • Took only 1 screen - an awesome little details that adds a lot realism to the scene!

Attached Image: duke0000.png

2

User is offline   Mark 

#7

This thread is a cool idea. I wish there would have been some detailed opinions like this when I released some of my projects. I had to make posts almost begging for people to give some kind of player review because the only feedback I had was from playtesters who basically just looked for mistakes and glitches and didn't comment much on the gameplay. I so much wanted to hear the good and the bad so I knew where to improve my technique. A couple of guys stepped up with some critiques but I would have liked much more.

I've never been much of a player of maps and mods so I'm not a good candidate for joining in here. But I still enjoy reading the reviews. It amazes me how deep some players dive into this stuff and can post so many details. If I played a map I would likely be able to come up with a single paragraph. ;)

This post has been edited by Mark: 03 June 2021 - 06:34 AM

1

User is offline   Merlijn 

#8

I played the first ROCH again, funny thing is I used to scoff at this map a bit because it's not quite as refined or well designed as its sequels (and Roch 4 was my first taste of the series and blew my mind back then, so by comparison this one doesn't look quite as good). Still, for a map from 1999 it's quite large and expansive and it already manages to stand out from te crowd. The carousel is an obvious highlight. Also the sheer size must have been pretty impressive back then.

Some observations from me (trying to not repeat too much of what has been said already).
-Exploring the large city and hunting for secrets is a lot of fun here. You can jump into the cars or use steroids to race across the city yourself. There's a large supply of steroids on every corner of the map, which is a nice touch.
-To reach ludicrous speed, use steroids and race down the conveyer belts at the parking lot!
-I wonder how the trick with water pool at the start was done? It's different from Bobs clearwater effect. Also a bit janky due to an invisible ceiling.
-Shadows are a bit inconsistent, some buildings and objects casts shadows while others don't. Also stuff like this looks kinda weird:
Attached Image: duke0207.png
-The indoor sections are still quite blocky but also well detailled for the most part. Only room that looks off to me is the book shop / kiosk.
The restaurant, the gas station and the backstage area are the highlights for me.
-Gameplay is quite easy, especially if you find the secrets. Pascal is pretty generous to the player when it comes to giving ammo and atomic health. At one point I had 50 rockets without even realizing it.
-I found 9 secrets, somehow still missed 4!


Quote

I wish there would have been some detailed opinions like this when I released some of my projects. I had to make posts almost begging for people to give some kind of player review because the only feedback I had was from playtesters who basically just looked for mistakes and glitches and didn't comment much on the gameplay. I so much wanted to hear the good and the bad so I knew where to improve my technique. A couple of guys stepped up with some critiques but I would have liked much more.


That's understandable, I felt the same after The Imperium was released and it didn't get that much response. Turned me off from mapping for a while. However, the community seems to be much healthier nowadays. DN3D will always be a bit of a niche of course, but I do get the impression people are more responsive these days. I remember the days when most feedback came from fellow mappers. :D

This post has been edited by Merlijn: 03 June 2021 - 11:17 AM

2

User is offline   ck3D 

#9

View PostMerlijn, on 03 June 2021 - 11:14 AM, said:

That's understandable, I felt the same after The Imperium was released and it didn't get that much response. Turned me off from mapping for a while. However, the community seems to be much healthier nowadays. DN3D will always be a bit of a niche of course, but I do get the impression people are more responsive these days. I remember the days when most feedback came from fellow mappers. :D


There's also the fact that user maps are so much easier to grab and convenient to launch on a whim, whereas bigger mods take more determination to get into (and the more changes from the base format, the least appeal to casual players) and so mapping going towards those will always be at least a tiny bit more niche. But Imperium was excellent, I was still recommending it to Aleks the other day, and would definitely be worth a monthly feature on here. Being tied to DukePlus used to be one of its strengths short term, but also fusioned both projects' lifespans. Honestly, I think the community was always correct in terms of feedback, it's just smaller or bigger in itself depending on the era.

Re: ludicrous speed, going to be hard to beat this guy:



Would be cool if everyone posted their time on each level, too, by the way. In the case of maps I already know, I'm kind of tempted to play them alternatively (including pitiful speed play attempts that shouldn't qualify as 'speedrunning'), or generally approach them from unusual angles, I figure generally that would be a fun thing to do.

I want to replay that series by the way, but I need to play bullerbullerseven's Bioshock map first, I've been sitting on that one for a year now, what the heck.
2

User is offline   Aleks 

#10

Nice to see this thread getting some responses! That speedrunning video is sick, wonder if all that clipping is possible under newer EDuke builds.

 Mark, on 03 June 2021 - 06:29 AM, said:

I've never been much of a player of maps and mods so I'm not a good candidate for joining in here. But I still enjoy reading the reviews. It amazes me how deep some players dive into this stuff and can post so many details. If I played a map I would likely be able to come up with a single paragraph. ;)

But that's the exact main purpose of this thread - so people who don't play that much user content would be more encouraged to do so ;) Join ahead, we have cookies!

Anyway, played Roch 2 and enjoyed it a lot, was a trip right down the memory lane once again! The settings were the same as before (EDuke32 r9321, Come Get Some), this time "City Streets" was my chosen music track. Took me 27 minutes and found all secrets (this time also needed to backtrack right from the finish to the 6th one, also there's this convenient viewscreen showing the secrets at the end). Here's the summary:
  • Aesthetics are hugely improved from the 1st map. Not only there's more variety in texturing of the buildings, but also the city skyline/landscapes/out of bound areas are much more detailed (well in 1st map it was really just all buildings around the player area). This alone makes it look much more realistically.
  • The most memorable designs/areas in this one are red sports car towards the end, fancy restaurant with fans on the ceiling and the go-kart track (the cars will actually run you over).
  • There's some interesting secrets as well, including a very nicely designed bathroom and a jam session room with amps, drums and guitar recreated. Also there's the girls in the windows peeking here and there at you...
  • I didn't like some cheap surprise encounters, like commanders shooting at you in cramped spaces right after opening a door with no room to back out/avoid the rocket. Also the ending with 2 turrets behind fake nuke button seemed a bit cheap if you ask me.
  • It took me a while to locate the switch deactivating the forcefield for blue key, even though I was pretty sure I knew where to look for it, as it's hidden behind some furniture. I liked how you had to "win" the blue keycard near the go-karts area (also I really dig the design of this area, with sloped pillars). There's also a "hidden" message to dnclip for a ride :P
  • The most clever effect this time around was the crane at the beginning that could be used to retrieving some items. Of course stuff like go-karts also deserve their mention, once again.
  • After the up-down altering ad banner in Roch, this time we had a left-right cycling one. Banners in Roch are something that could use their own thread - it will get even more interesting later on!
  • Clearing the streets of alien scum was my favourite part of the map, combat-wise. Some of the monsters were cleverly hidden on the roofs behind cranes and nookies only to ambush and surprise you, which worked better than precisely set respawns. What was a missed opportunity would be having an encounter with Battlelord or 2 on the main plaza of the map, ideally they would come from the direction of bank/museum building which is inaccessible anyway.
  • Verticality of this map was really cool - being able to explore a lot on the sloped rooftops without it feeling pushed in anyway.
Attached Image: duke0001.png Attached Image: duke0002.png Attached Image: duke0003.png

This post has been edited by Aleks: 04 June 2021 - 01:13 AM

1

User is offline   jkas789 

#11

Roch 1

Difficulty: Come Get Some
Play time: 61 mins
Enemies Killed: 163
Secrets: 10

Attached Image: Screenshot_2.jpg

This one was a fun one. I remember playing the Roch maps some time ago however I must confess I had completely forgotten about them. My experience went something like this:

The maps starts you off giving you a taste via cameras of the scale of what you are playing going against, and to give you a general idea of the layout. After exploding the gas canisters and dealing with the pigcomp, sentry drones, flying fatso and some aliens I found the RPG at the bottom of the well and manueverd myself at the top of the roof to the right of the swimming pool to get the atomic health. Cue a lot of kickassery with me using the pistol to snipe the mobs from a save distance. Except the sentry drones near the mart, because they are the worst.

Afterwards I took a detour to the underground parking lot were I confirmed that fucking sentry drones are a blight on this Earth and I came across the automatic bands (is that the correct name for them?) that can take you in and out of the parking lot in a jiffy.

Attached Image: duke0000.png

After going back through the parking lot to the water fountain to abuse regain some much needed health I decided to go around the the city, taking out the pig cop tank and making a massacre of my enemies. I did not approach the "right" side were the giant screen and helicopter were though.

Around this are I found my first secret which totally was disappointing! At first I saw the shrinker and I got super excited however then I realized it was disassembled. There goes my hope of getting a shrinker early, damn it.

Attached Image: duke0001.png

I went back, to the mart, got a nasty surprise in there with the room with the pig cops and the turret, then I admired the "dolls". I always like seeing enemy sprites used like this! :D

Moving on I managed to climb to the ducts and found myself a devastator which was nice.

I moved my ass to the opened kitchen windows on the back alley were I had to fight my way to the office were I found my first secret.

Attached Image: duke0008.png

Then I proceded to the comic/videogame shop were I got myself an RPG and some laser tripmines that I never used.

Afterwards I found the secret observation/lab room and managed to find the secret room hidden at the second story floor in a building adjacent to the start area.

Attached Image: duke0012.png

Attached Image: duke0012.png

Then after spending too much time going around in circles looking for a key I realized that I was a retard and I had to activate the switch in the Burger restaurant meeting room to be able to enter the gas station were after killing the overlord I found the secret leading to the ice shooting gun thingy.

I also found one of the secret rooms that is opened via humping a wall till you open a window.

After finally getting the fucking keycard I went directly to the arcade were I made judicious use of my rocket launcher to kill anything between me and the blue key. This room in particular was not cool. If I was playing Shadow Warrior I would have nuked the shit out of that room.

Attached Image: duke0022.png

Then I got to the cinema, were it was pretty straight forward and I finally got the shrinker, for all the good it did to me lol.

Finally I got the yellow keycard however after clearing the room I could not, for the life of me, open the black door to the exit. It took me a long while but after going around in circles, looking around the map for a secret switch or some other shit, I realized while opening a door on the cinema that I was on a Build Engine Game and that I was more retarded than I could ever imagined.

Attached Image: duke0036.png

Turns out I was opening the door wrong.


In conclusion, I liked this map. Aesthetically I think it looked great and I liked the interactivity found in it as well (cinema, ascending helicopter, etc). Visually the only thing gnarly looking were the cars running around automatically piloted apparently however other than that it pretty good looking. Gameplay wise the only thing I can complain about were the fucking sentry drones.

Fuck those guys.

8/10, not the best ever but it was great IMO.
3

User is offline   Aleks 

#12

Played Roch 3 - same settings as usually (although newer EDuke snapshot almost backfired at me as I had some problems entering one of the secrets due to new clipping behaviour - luckily, jetpack came in handy in this case!). Found all 10 secrets before checking the viewscreen at the end of the map (which is something I really like about Roch maps), took 32 minutes. This time, "Going After the Fat Commander" was my chosen soundtrack for this map, which fit perfectly well!
  • As ck3D mentioned somewhere lately (not sure if it was on the forum or in our private conversation), this map is one of the most consistent Roch maps, building around a single street/single neighbourhood. We will be mostly visiting apartments and houses in this one, although there's also a railway station (with some cool unreachable landscapes), motel and electronic shop.
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  • Pascal has significantly improved his shading techniques from the previous maps. This one might also be the Roch that is most reminiscent of the original maps in style (single street, clear progression, clean architecture and reasonable level of detail), even though there's some creative uses of texture. Never noticed this one before, but just look how this building is utilizing the pool table supports texture!
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  • There's also more play with architecture in general - the layout is really well planned with some realistic looking eye-candy, buildings are more varied (I've always wondered if the shape of this building is somehow inspired by the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao?).
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  • However, this realistic layout is perhaps applied with too much dilligency in the case of scale, as some rooms tend to be a bit cramped. The one that suffers the most has to be the upper floor apartment with a party going on, as navigating through it is a bit frustrating.
  • I really dig the idea of progression in this one - although there's viewscreens everywhere, they just show the same areas. Instead, the remote switches are placed at the openable windows, so you can clearly see what is being opened, as the next door gets brightened up with light to indicate it (this isn't the case only with the final switch door, but it's quite clear where you are supposed to go by then anyway).
  • Also I really like the idea with acquiring the red keycard, which might not be too obvious and requires some observation - but the presentation is just great. Also, once again there's only this single new beast in the map, as FistMarine has curiously noticed in 2 previous maps!
  • The gameplay can be pretty challenging at the beginning due to scarcity of ammo and weapons. I was pretty much saved by finding a secret with 20 shotgun shells there. Besides the crampedness, it goes pretty smooth from there. Also there's a lot of opportunities to blow a bunch of your opponents with pipe bombs here and there :) Besides that, I think because of the map's scale/type of encounters, I relied on shotgun even more than usually.
  • The most memorable landmarks in this one has to be the clock (I really dig how it's done and working, the workaround for the sloped rotating sectors first walls is brilliant!) and perhaps the minigolf course found in one of the offices - too bad it's not playable here...
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  • As for the effects, again the clock takes priority. Also there's a neat little sequence with the helicopter (the one from Roch) landing and dispatching pig cops. One more thing that not many people might notice is the lightswitch in one of the staircases, which turns itself off automatically after some time - that's a nice and realistic touch! There's also a stereo system which you can operate.
  • As before, there's a alterating ad - this time it goes across the diagonal, as shown below!
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  • The secrets are often focused around a hidden switch somewhere that opens a hidden passage inside the room, but there's usually some hint as to where the button can be found. In my case, I usually first found the thing that should be opened, then proceded to look for the switch :P
  • And finally - it seems that one of the apartments which we visit is inhabited by a loving family of liztroops, who have their family photos everywhere - how cute :)
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This post has been edited by Aleks: 05 June 2021 - 01:40 AM

3

User is offline   quakis 

#13

Hoping to find the time to jump onboard with this, a good excuse as any to replay these for the umptenth time and replace my older reviews with better write ups.

My fondest memory of Roch though is not entirely the maps - Pascal (as well as Mikko) were the first folks I ever communicated with in this community.
0

User is offline   Merlijn 

#14

Roch 2

This used to be one of my favorites in the series and it still is. It's maybe not as detailled or refined as the later entries, but here you can see Pascal really coming into his own.
One thing I always liked about this map is how it feels like a small/medium sized town somewhere in the middle of France, instead of some large metropole.
There's the plaza, the bumper carts, a small bistro. And instead of a large supermarket we find this small local grocery store here.

This overall feel would continue with the next 2 maps, but from roch 5 to 8 the series kinda moved away from it which is a bit of a shame.
I would have loved to see one of these maps taking place in the French countryside. Maybe we could have seen some vineyards!

Back to Roch 2, I've played this map so many times it's hard to think of something new. I really like the way the secrets are implemented here, they're not too hard to find and offer you a lot of extra goodies.
The one with the instruments (including a flying V!) is obviously my favorite. It even gives you an alternative route to the plaza, which is really cool. Several rooftops are accessible, giving the map more depth.

Since we have a recent topic about locations that do not exist in the base game, the psychiatrist practice deserves a mention. Quite well realized with clearly defined rooms (front desk, waiting room etc).
The cycloid silhouette with the target on its chest was a nice touch.

Gameplay-wise it's not very hard, Pascal is very generous with shotgun shells so it's almost impossible to run out.
Some of the respawns can be a bit nasty if you don't watch out and there's a couple of unfairly places commanders. Other than that, nothing that should be troublesome.

Map took me 20 minutes, I found all the secrets.
4

User is offline   Aleks 

#15

Roch Secret 1 - settings same as always, music set to "Taking Names". This one's particularly unique for being the only night-themed map within the series, and also for somehow exotic theme of beach/amusement park. Took 17 minutes, found 2/3 secrets before going out of my way and looking at hints on the viewscreen at the end (the 3rd one was a bit of pain in the ass to locate even with the hint from final secrets viewscreen).
  • The largest drawback is the copy-pasting from previous maps - the carousel, go-kart track (at least we get to ride the go-karts this time), the clock, even the cars towards the end, all the altering ad posters, landing helicopter - we've seen it all before. Also the puzzles with red key are downward copied from Roch 2.
  • The map was also notably shorter than the others in the series. The locations included a coastline with everything you'd expect there - a hotel lobby, snacks bar, the amusement park, parking with some cars and even a small museum (?) overtaken by the hobos in one of the secrets.
  • I especially liked the architecture of the hotel with its main gates being especially well done. There's also some nice landscaping outside of the bounds, especially the lighthouse.
  • The gameplay is quite challenging at times, especially at the beginning, as the map basically throws you in the middle of a fight and backing anywhere could lead to running into more enemies. The final encounter with 2 Battlelords and a tank is well done too.
  • The atmosphere is especially strong in this one - I really dig the vibe of beach at night presented like this. Also the layout is worth noting, which gets very interconnected the more we progress.

3

User is offline   max_nukem 

#16

I played NITROGLYCERIN that is a sequel of Quantum Physics by the author Paul "High Treason" Monteray.
https://msdn.duke4.net/hotnitro.php
This is the one of the best maps from this author.
The goal is to dind 5 items to create dynamite and blast a rock to clear the way to the alien spaceship.
Not so many enemiea and not so hard, but interesting idea with collecting on this map.
Also good leveldesign and no custom textures as a good point.

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This post has been edited by max_nukem: 06 June 2021 - 07:32 AM

3

User is offline   FistMarine 

#17

Quote

Wow, FistMarine, you pretty much made a full walkthrough of these levels :D As for Roch taking you to Hollywood Holocaust in DOS, I suppose maps that ended with a 65535 tagged sector instead of nukebutton just did that on default.

Thanks Aleks, I enjoyed writing a short walkthrough of each map! And thanks for explaining about the ending sector, I was thinking the same.

Anyway I will talk about Roch 3, Roch Secret 1 and Roch 4 that I played last week.

Roch 3

Continuing from where Roch 2 ended, Duke falls into a sewer and has to find weapons. There are a few slimers at beginning that can be kicked without worrying about damage, just hold your attack button. Though there is a chance that when you start the level, you lose a few health points due to getting electrocuted (I'm assuming you start on an electrical floor for a split second, so you lose your weapons like in E1L3). Then you have to find the pistol which is guarded by one or more troopers. Just grab it quickly and start attacking! Oh and grab that nearby armor too! You will notice a nice detail where you can see part of the previous level, which is pure classic Duke3D! I loved when you could see part of the previous/next level in the original game.

I found interesting when grabbing the shotgun, a small helicopter appears which drops a few pig cops. Funnily enough, the enforcer (in the first screenshot you see of the level) took a dump and also dropped his chaingun. Though I already had a chaingun, so it was just extra ammo this time around. Don't worry, in a later Roch level, I actually got an extra chaingun from a dead enforcer before getting the actual one placed in the level. You will see soon.

There is a not-so secret room with some dancing ladies and a "fake" Duke or a Duke "statue" or something. It also contains few enemies inside. There is a switch you have to activate in order to progress. Although I have found no secrets at all while playing the level, a particular secret in this room seems to activate only once, so make sure to have a handy backup save just in case you don't get fast enough in the secret. I'm certainly glad I didn't press that button before when I was playing in map, only after I was done, so I had a backup save right before finding the secrets. As you know, I don't like or want having to replay a bunch or lost progress, nor to resort to using noclip cheat. If I screw something up, I just load a save. Continuing with the map, when you press that switch mentioned earlier that unlocks the next path, you open some sort of musical store which contains quite a few pig cops and enforcers. Continue going upstairs (and be careful with dealing with that assault commander in cramped space) and grab the blue card!

I find a bit odd that the card lock switches are quite tiny in this map, at least the red card switch. Well, anyway, insert the blue card and enter the next building. For some reason, a pig cop managed to clip through that window while I was admiring the view of the room. I didn't lose too much health thankfully but it was just weird. Go upstairs, get rid of the monsters, admire yourself into mirror (heh) and press the next switch to unlock another building.

Go back and press on those metal doors and carefully take out the enemies inside the building. There is also a single Protector Drone (once again, the only one present in the level) that guards the way to the roof of building. Kill the drone, jump and get on the roof and grab the red card.

Then taking the monsters out of the building (kinda made me wish I had found the Shrinker secret, was tired of having to rely on shotgun & chaingun to take out commanders in cramped spaces, plus the ammo was getting scarce). I liked that miniature golf course in the room that was guarded by a commander. You have to unlock another building before unlocking the railway station that contains the yellow card. When you reach there, kill the pig cops that guard the place, then quickly grab the jetpack and run! There will be a Mini Battlelord that spawns. I remembered this trap since years ago, so I just ran and killed him from distance.

Clean the next room, grab the card and you will notice some commanders await you near yellow lock, which is where the exit is. Don't worry, when you unlock the building, there are even more commanders that are coming towards you! Take them out, explore the rest of the map for any missed secrets (yeah I found none first time, got everything after I reached exit). Also I like that clock from the front of the building, I should have mentioned earlier, though Aleks already beat me to it.

Overall, an interesting map that also seemed a bit more challenging this time around, mostly because of slightly less supplies seemed available at times. Or that is because I didn't initially find any secrets?

Roch Secret 1

Wow, that's a rather interesting start of the level. You start inside one of the cars, surrounded by many monsters (some that get squished by the cars) and not having a place to hide for a while until you clear them. I admit I died once (the only death so far) caused by getting shot for a while (while trying my best to kill all those annoying monsters that were shooting me) and ultimately getting blown up by three or so sentry drones while I had 30% health and stuck in the corner trying to defend myself. The armor wasn't enough to survive all that damage I soaked up until that point and I grabbed the armor as soon as I was running around after I started the level. Load my save I made shortly after starting and redo these fights better and with a bit more knowledge, I survive eventually with 22 health and wanted to post a screenshot but for some reason it wasn't saved, so I have only three screens this time.

Then I managed to find the bathroom and drink to get my health back. If only I found the bathroom earlier...also one time I accidentally picked up an atomic health at 75 health while I went to drink water in bathroom, so I didn't get the full benefit from it because it blend in background with the broken toilet and the water it spawned.

Anyway there's not too much to write about this level. There are elements from the previous maps (the carousel from the first level, the riding cars and the card puzzle from second, the clock from the third). But also some new ones like the lighthouse that can be seen far away. The card puzzle I must mention that this time it is a red card instead of blue card from second level.
Yeah and the mini helicopter with pig cops from previous level returns as well, in place where you will find the RPG on the beach near the start.

The rest of the level isn't too difficult after clearing the tough parts from the beginning. The last fight with two mini battlelords and a pig cop tank aren't too bad because you should be pretty well equipped.
Overall, that was the shortest (but also the hardest, interestingly) map so far. Took me exactly 25 minutes AFTER going to find the secrets, because again I didn't found any. There are only three secrets to be found in total, with two that connect and one trickier to be found in the restaurant.

I wonder if the secret level was meant to be found in Roch 3 (as it was released after that and before Roch 4), had the episode been completed with 9 maps and two secret levels as it was planned back then. I guess we will never know.

Roch 4

Continuing from Roch 3 (canonically), I liked the concept of this map. Duke enters a contest and must win a prize (yellow card) by getting a bunch of red and blue cards, with each reward giving larger and better stuff to you (more weapons/ammo, health/armor, etc). I already got the chaingun from one of the enforcers outside, before getting to the one spawned by rewards.
When you unlock the place outside, you must find a bunch of red and blue cards in order to unlock the final prize. Picking up each card and/or using it in the studio, will spawn a few random monsters on the street.

The yellow card reward gives access to a mansion, complete with a limousine and...monsters inside the mansion! I guess the aliens really liked that mansion. Also don't forget some aliens outside the mansion as well. Inside the mansion, after clearing the rooms of monsters, there is a strange monitor that shows a screenshot of a Battlelord with a moustache? Kinda funny gag. I could even say that this is a hint that you will get to fight a Mini Battlelord (or more actually!) soon enough, you will see.

Once you access a hidden place (intended for progression) by getting into fire hole and jumping, you will fight a trooper and then getting downstairs, two protector drones await you. Kill those troopers waiting around corners, grab the devastator with atomic health and prepare for the final fight! You will fight THREE Mini Battlelords!

After you are done, return to previous place, get out of mansion, insert card and you are done! I found 4/5 secrets initially (kinda spoiled a bit because I accidentally checked Mapster32 BEFORE playing the map instead of after, so some seemed more obvious to me anyway) and the last one I had to find was with the treasure chest (on the bedroom with the women).
Overall, funny concept and a very interesting map overall.

The time it took for an individual map is shown at the level stats screenshot for each level, as I forgot to mention my exact time before. I will now mention all my stats so far (and then another overall stats at end of Roch 8 in following days/weeks)

Total Deaths (so far): 1
Total Kills (so far): 620
Total Secrets (so far): 37
Total Time (so far): 03:56:27 (almost 4 hours already!)

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This post has been edited by FistMarine: 07 June 2021 - 06:42 AM

4

User is offline   Aleks 

#18

View PostFistMarine, on 07 June 2021 - 06:37 AM, said:

Although I have found no secrets at all while playing the level, a particular secret in this room seems to activate only once, so make sure to have a handy backup save just in case you don't get fast enough in the secret. I'm certainly glad I didn't press that button before when I was playing in map, only after I was done, so I had a backup save right before finding the secrets.


I just checked and this secret is activated by a masterswitch, meaning it would disappear after the activation - therefore you should be able to normally operate the door by pressing on it. Unless it is different in DOS Box than in EDuke?

Quote

For some reason, a pig cop managed to clip through that window while I was admiring the view of the room. I didn't lose too much health thankfully but it was just weird.



I know which room and which Pig Cop you mean, had him break in there out of nowhere as well - which make it seem like it's some staged event actually.
1

User is offline   Merlijn 

#19

Roch 3.

Took me 29 minutes, found all secrets (although only found 8 during the game, I had to go look for the missing 2 at the end. The shrinker especially is pretty well hidden).
I played the previous 2 on let's rock, but I found it too easy so I upgraded to come get some. This map is a bit more challenging, especially at the beginning when you're still scrambling for weapons while aliens start firing at you from all directions. Nevertheless, there's also a lot of health lying around in the streets, so I didn't come close to dying. I only died once and that was due to a certain secret (more on that below).

This map is also ingrained in my memory, while I personally don't like it quite as much as roch2 it is a better map in some ways. The layout is really well put together, very tight and progression is well thought out.
Extra shoutout to the unreachable scenery, especially the canal and the train station. You can tell Pascal put a lot of effort into them. I think this is the first train station in a DN3D user map?
In terms of technical wizardry the clock has already been mentioned, I also like the trick with the timed light switch a lot.

The room with the rave party is a bit too cramped for my liking, especially since the room is really crowded. As Duke would say: my kind of party, I wish I had time. ;)
The way the secret works in this room is also a bit confusing, no wonder Fistmarine didn't find it. This is where I died, I hit the button and tried to go for the secret ASAP, but got blocked by one of the ladies.
And then got squished by the secret door when it closed again. :P
Most of the other secrets are pretty easy to spot, Pascal helps out with some pretty obvious hints... Or at least they're obvious once you see them.

Overall this continues the high standard set by Roch2 and is another great city map.

Quote

I know which room and which Pig Cop you mean, had him break in there out of nowhere as well - which make it seem like it's some staged event actually.


I think that's deliberate, done with a wall that blocks on one side only. Pascal also uses this trick at the train station.
4

User is offline   Aleks 

#20

Played Roch 4 (settings as usual), this one comes with its own music, which I found rather annoying - but that is basically the only complaint I have about the map. This is probably my favourite of all Roch maps and definitely the most memorable one. I'd even risk saying this is one of the most important Duke 3D maps ever created. Why? Find out!
  • This map is essentially a key hunt, with 5 red, 5 blue and 3 yellow keys total. However, the way it is incorporated is brilliant, with the TV show requiring you to collect the keycards in basically a sandbox city environment. The hunt itself is just about the right length and difficulty - you do have to explore every corner of the map, but in such a smooth way that there shouldn't be anything obscure about it. Additional prizes in the form of guns'n'goodies awarded for each keycard input are nice touch!
  • The architecture of the map is absolutely stunning. The city area strongly resembles a more refined and polished classic styled maps, but the architectural details are just gorgeous. Gotta love that building in the center of the city.

Attached Image: duke0018.png
  • Then there's the mansion, which might just be my favourite building ever created in Duke. I didn't go for the obvious and made heaps of screenshots of the building itself, but instead concentrated on the details: the classic architecture in the cellar, beautifully sloped struts in the wooden attic structure and a double mirror on wardrobe doors (how the hell doesn't these conflict due to "mirrors are too close" issue?!). The whole building gives a strong sense of 3D, whether viewed from the outside or inside. The limousine in front is also one of the coolest cars recreated in Duke, and the use of textures on it is brilliant. Did I mention I even love how the gardens are clean-cut?

Attached Image: duke0016.png Attached Image: duke0014.png Attached Image: duke0015.png
  • More about the mansion, now from a more technical point of view. The biggest impact this map had on me back on the day was realising that the mansion isn't there just for show, but you actually can get inside - which is mind-blowing, knowing the restrictions of Build engine and slopes, but done in such a seamless way it might just be the best parallax trick ever pulled. Just look at the trees below the mansion, how they hide everything that could cause HOM glitches due to SOS:
Attached Image: duke0017.png
  • Besides the mansion, we also visit the residential area in town, with one building with a particularly strong sense of location being a carpenter's workshop (again, love how these saws are made) and of course, the TV studio at the beginning.
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  • It's also worth noting how the parallax tricks with negatives/maskwalls is pulled with the railings for carpenter's workshop staircase:

Attached Image: duke0012.png

  • Once again, we get another fancy altering ad - this one unwraps itself 4 ways to the corners, which is even more advanced:

Attached Image: duke0019.png

  • The gameplay was about right - I didn't struggle for ammo, but I've never been close to full on shotgun or chaingun really. 3 Battlelords encounter in the cellar was really cool due to the limited space there, also the constant respawn of monsters in the city part was neat. The areas felt much less cramped than in previous Roch maps.
  • To conclude, this map provides a perfect balance of design aesthetics, cool effects and innovative gameplay. In my opinion, despite earlier Roch maps (2 and 3 especially) already being great, this is the breakthrough point for the series when they started to basically set their own trend in Duke mapping.
Took me 31 minutes to complete, I forgot about the 2 secrets at the beginning and only backtracked for them after checking the viewscreen at the end. It's too bad - one of the secrets would make clearing a certain room in the map a lot more fun!
3

User is offline   quakis 

#21

ROCH1 has now received a new review, I look forward to continuing into ROCH2; https://taw.duke4.ne...6/duke3d/roch1/
4

User is offline   jkas789 

#22

Roch 2

Difficulty: Come Get Some
Play time: 28 mins
Enemies Killed: 117
Secrets: 6

This one definitely hit different than the first. Aesthetically wise i think it looks good. Not as good as newer maps but it definitely still feels very modern. I was totally a fan of doctor Nekum's office ;)

Gameplay wise I liked this map very much. While I think that large maps are very impressive, if there is one one criticism I often find myself giving to them is that at times they can feel bloated. So a "short" map like this one is definitely in my strike zone. I liked the the level a lot, even if some rooms were ball busters like this one:

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Were fighting a assault commander in close quarters is not a fun time. Also the last rap with the turrets was just mean.

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Perhaps the most annoying part of the level for me was crouch jumping through the chute on the wall to end the level. But that may be on me and I should just grab a older version of EDuke32.

Honestly, there is not much left to say about. The map is short, sweet and rolls out the tongue.

EDIT: As a side note, I was disappointed this did not go anywhere. I memorized the button orders and AFAIK it was never used lol.

Attached Image: Screenshot_1.jpg

This post has been edited by jkas789: 09 June 2021 - 06:17 PM

2

User is offline   jkas789 

#23

Roch 3

Difficulty: Come Get Some
Play time: 29+ mins
Enemies Killed: 129
Secrets: 4/10


This one was fine as well. I was not a fan of the starting area for two reasons:

1.- it was dark as shit and my old feeble eyes can't neither see well in the dark nor handle raising the brightness on my monitor.
2.- Again with the fucking weird ass holes in the wall that you have to crouch jump to get through. For my sanity's sake I have decided to noclip through them except for one occasion in particular (that I hated oh so much).

Anyways aesthetically wise the map looks alright. I like the cars around the map, I think they look really good and still keep up today. It is a world of difference from the cars going around on the first map. Though I guess making this ones move would be significantly more difficult (pardon my ignorance).


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Also the clock was fairly impressive, I stayed a while just looking at the hands move lol.

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It would have been nice if the robo girl from the second map appeared on the window as well but oh well.

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Anyways, gameplay wise this is absolutely fine except for one point that I absolutely hate. And that is going through the hole on the roof to get the red key, which I though was finicky as fuck!

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Like seriously, why? why the fuck did you decide this was a good thing Pascal? You jump and the jarring change from being outside to inside gives you fucking whiplash. Also actually getting to the roof, was in my experience a troublesome affair. You can easily jump farther than you intend and fall to the ground (receiving fall damage along the way, talk about adding salt to the wound). I ended up save cumming the shit out of it.

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This time the MVP definitely was the pipe bombs, which came in handy to throw around corners inside the apartment halls, saving me from some messy ambushes. Also, as always the RPG was a life saver, along with the devastator. The final battle with the fat flying aliens was easy as heck thanks to unleashing all my explosive ammo.

Conclusion: Yeah it's ok. :) Though I definitely am not a fan of those crouch jumps shenanigans. And the roof window. Fuck that thing.

This post has been edited by jkas789: 10 June 2021 - 01:45 AM

2

User is offline   Aleks 

#24

Played Roch 5 on my standard settings, with Gotham playing as the soundtrack. This time, we're back downtown with apartments, an industrial plants (and generally some more industrial-themed sights), office of some consultant (might be a lawyer or a doctor I suppose) and most notably, a wonderful bookshop/art gallery.
  • This map feels way more cramped, even than Roch 3. Not only the indoors are cramped, but also the streets look kinda small and claustrophobic.
  • The gameplay is quite challenging, especially at the beginning. For some reasons, most of the monsters start the map active, which makes cleaning the street at the beginning and with limited ammo a bit challenging and requires playing more carefully. Later on, there's another triple Battlelord encounter and another landing helicopter with Pig Cops.
  • There's a minivan and a truck in this map. I suppose there's some effect with elevator and parallaxed sky involved in the truck, probably has to do with monsters descending, but it was bugged over in my version and just kept shaking me when I entered the sector - no clue what it was supposed to do actually.
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  • These place felt especially cramped, although I love the design. Also the infinitely playing music in the elevator was kinda annoying. Not sure what happened, but I could enter the room with red key by the window without really needing the blue key here.
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  • I love how creative the paintings in art gallery are - especially the one with the bird! Also, marked a secret with a spoiler, but it's kinda easy to locate - this one inspired the location of 2nd yellow card in my Piggish Prison, although I added a little twist with the safe lock inside of it.
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Spoiler

  • This time the altering ad is a bit simpler, but still cool to see another configuration for it!

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  • Particularly interesting technical effects in this one include the use of maskwalls (see art gallery railings on the upper floor, but also windows and a particular door in the industrial plant), parallaxed tricks (like the moving painting shown above) and lots of experimentation with sounds. There's another multiwall mirror here - I checked in the editor this time to see how he pulled it off and it's simple as hell, yet so effective!

Attached Image: duke0025.png
  • Found 5 secrets during the game, then had to look for quite a bit for the last one after seeing a hint on the viewscreen. Funnily enough, I knew exactly where it was, just getting there was quite a challenge. The map took me 29 minutes, standard for Roch. Also, I completely missed this RPG during the gameplay and only noticed it when I took a final walk around to make screenshots, but it shouldn't be too hard to reach it.

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1

#25

I'd love to do this some time, but Roch? Yeah, I'm gonna pass this one up, I think, rather than piss everyone off. Best you'll get is a crap sliced up video instead of a write-up, if that's acceptable? Of course, I might just do it anyway if it isn't, or I might not.

View Postmax_nukem, on 06 June 2021 - 07:30 AM, said:

Stuff

I'll never say no to free advertising, even if it's in the wrong thread.

This post has been edited by High Treason: 10 June 2021 - 12:50 PM

0

User is offline   jkas789 

#26

View PostHigh Treason, on 10 June 2021 - 12:50 PM, said:

I'd love to do this some time, but Roch? Yeah, I'm gonna pass this one up, I think, rather than piss everyone off. Best you'll get is a crap sliced up video instead of a write-up, if that's acceptable? Of course, I might just do it anyway if it isn't, or I might not.

I'll never say no to free advertising, even if it's in the wrong thread.


You should do it. While I have been enjoying Roch, I also enjoy the different opinions people have about the maps. If you do not like them posting your reasons in a detailed way in this mod of the month club would be a interesting point of view. This is not an echo chamber after all.
0

#27

Probably ended up being more grumpy than I would have been, because recording wouldn't get going. Going into the map I was about to say something to the effect of "I'll wipe the slate clean" but immediately got hit with ammo shortage, which instantly soured things.




Took about 44 minutes to complete. We never did have to go to that bloody parking lot of death. In fact there were quite a few areas that only seemed to exist to waste ammo, while things like medkits were hidden away in weird places.

Forgive the fan noise, but it was about 38C/100F in here, so I wasn't about to turn that off.

Of course I wouldn't take away the enjoyment other people might find in this map. If you do enjoy it, then you should enjoy it, as these things are largely subjective.

This post has been edited by High Treason: 10 June 2021 - 08:12 PM

5

User is offline   Aleks 

#28

View PostHigh Treason, on 10 June 2021 - 08:11 PM, said:

Probably ended up being more grumpy than I would have been, because recording wouldn't get going. Going into the map I was about to say something to the effect of "I'll wipe the slate clean" but immediately got hit with ammo shortage, which instantly soured things.


About the jank with dark sprite blocking the roundabout, it may not look too good, but it's there to block the entrance of player on foot while letting him pass inside the car, effectively turning the cars into a gameplay devices and not just mere decorations. Probably would look better now with the ability to make sprites invisible. BTW, I lost it at the beginning of your movie when you switch to a shotgun with 0 ammo to kill a trooper, get auto-switched to RPG and just kamikaze on him at point blank range :D

Anyway, finished Roch 6 today - and it's probably my other favourite one, along with Roch 4. In terms of aesthetics, it's one of the most beautiful maps ever created, but also it has quite a unique gameplay which is a consequence of it's layout, a complete brilliance in terms of level design. This time listened to Lord of LA. Map took me 32 minutes and I found all 5 secrets during my regular gameplay without really going out of my way at all.
  • In this one, we visit a pool, EDF research facility, sewers, couple of apartments - including what seems to be architect's house, something I've always imagine to be Pascal's "MyHouse.map" kinda thing. However, the real focal point of this map is this damn majestic highway overpass. More or less subconciously, but I'm quite sure this is one of the inspirations why I decided to study civil engineering :P

Attached Image: duke0034.png Attached Image: duke0048.png
  • However, the strongest innovation of this map might be its unusual layout, which makes for an awesome build-up: we start in one of the buildings and slowly make our way around the central outdoor area, with lots of windows shuting right before our eyes with bars and only rising our expectations as to what is to come - until we finally emerge on the streets. 2D map of this one is also a work of art:

Attached Image: duke0046.png
  • This might also seem a bit confusing, as we later revisit the buildings and their doors are guarded by keylocks, but then there's no length-padding here and it just makes everything cooler in my opinion, as we kind of "learn" the map in the process.
  • The windows around the map serve a great way to present some tiny little details, which normally would be omitted by most players - these cute clovers being a fine example (there's also an RPG exposed near them, which alerts the attention even more):

Attached Image: duke0039.png
  • This time, Pascal is more generous with weapons and ammo, even if there's more enemies (and more tougher ones) - by the time we reach the streets, we should be fully prepared to face whatever awaits us there. Also there's a nice progression in the enemies as we move forward within the level, starting with easiest ones until we get better guns. The pool makes for another interesting battle, with Battlelord emerging in the water before our very eyes. Also there's always some respawns to keep us busy and on our toes, but still leaving a lot of room to breathe.
  • I've always considered this one to be "architect's" house, despite no obvious clues, because of the clean interior design and ruler placed on desk (and also what seems to be some kind of catalogue on another one). Moreover, there's this blatant self-ad on the building (another one to my little collection of Roch banners). And a beautiful white limousine, the only car in the map (which probably did inspire me when creating the limo in Casino Carnage).

Attached Image: duke0033.png Attached Image: duke0032.png Attached Image: duke0035.png
  • The pool architecture also deserves a mention - it's so clean and with all the cool interconnections like windows allowing us to peek underwater, the design is really clever here. I wonder if this one is based on a real-life building, maybe one Pascal would design himself? Also, the only issue with crampedness I encountered in this map was in the pool's dining/game room, due to all the blocked chairs and tables - but it was nothing too serious in anyway that would impact the combat for me.

Attached Image: duke0038.png Attached Image: duke0037.png
  • Also love this room with all the diagonality going basically in every direction:

Attached Image: duke0047.png
  • Finally, as a Build door nerd, I couldn't help but make a small gallery of doors in this map - basically slide doors with all the creative designs. The triple one at the pool is especially interesting IMO:

Attached Image: duke0042.png Attached Image: duke0043.png Attached Image: duke0044.png Attached Image: duke0045.png
3

User is offline   ck3D 

#29

^ Every once in a blue moon I'll find myself trying and thinking about Pascal's real-life inspirations for the Roch maps; as far as Roch 6 is concerned in particular, I seem to remember Pascal confirming to MetHy (before retiring, so ages ago) that it was more or less based on a block in Nantes, France; if that was his hometown then perhaps people will be luckier than me looking up the area in Google maps (not so long ago I remember trying to research the overpass, specifically). I tried to find the very specific Guggenheim-looking architectural bit from Roch 3 you were mentioning not so long ago, too, to no avail (but that one is such a detail to find in a whole city!).

There's also that archway thing in Roch 7 everyone seems to mistakingly assume is the Arc de Triomphe in Paris (which it isn't - that one would be twenty times taller, with an actual building inside), but it looks more like the "barrières" you can find around Bordeaux (of course Bordeaux calls them "barriers" when the rest of the country calls them "doorways"/"portes"):

https://www.bonjour-bordeaux.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/154_-_Porte_de_Bourgogne_-_Bordeaux.jpg

Also the 'hyper' market in Roch 1 I always assumed was based on some random Hyper U:

Spoiler


@High Treason loved the video man but, as much as seeing you come so close to nervous breakdown every second was hilarious in its own twisted ways, please don't die on us!

This post has been edited by ck3D: 11 June 2021 - 04:46 PM

3

User is offline   jkas789 

#30

Roch 4
Difficulty: Come Get Some
Play time: 29+ mins
Enemies Killed: 121
Secrets: 2/5

I had a lot of fun with this map. I though the Contest thingy room was pretty cool and I totally dig the colors. I also really liked the Mansion and it's underground mausoleum? Temple?

Attached Image: duke0009.png

Whatever, it was great.

Gameplay wise if you are pistol starting ammo is gonna be a bit of an issue but as long as you take care and don't rush it. Judicious use of the mighty kick is recommended. Otherwise ammo is actually ok? I may have gotten lucky as almost all pig cops dropped the shotgun and the aliens dropped a shit ton of pistol ammo. The Ripper ammo was kinda scarce though. The key hunt is honestly not bad at all, I had no problem finding the keys using the environmental cues. I did take a bit of a health hit on the house on fire.

Of note IMO is the part were you must jump on parts of a building to reach a alcove were you find a key inside.

Attached Image: duke0010.png

I also took some time to find some easter eggs as well.

Attached Image: duke0014.png

Attached Image: duke0015.png

Attached Image: duke0012.png

After you get the key you also get all the weapons and you can basically go gung ho through the mansion. I would recommend saving the devastator for the bit at the end in the mausoleum were the wall explodes and mini battlelords ambush you. Talking about the mansion, it is pretty much the highlight of the map. It is very well made and the gameplay flows extremely well IMO. That commander after coming down the attic is kinda dickish though. Also hands up those who found the gold treasure! :D

Attached Image: duke0018.png


It was pretty great, it definitely flushed the bitterness in my mouth from Roch 3. I think this was a banger!

This post has been edited by jkas789: 11 June 2021 - 07:49 PM

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