More shots for mine : http://born-robotic.net/xmasjam_bal.html
Can't wait to play the rest when I get back from xmas expediton!
The screenshots look fantastic, every single one of them!!
Gonna download it and play them all later. Good job!!!
Can't wait to dig in a bit later!
My map was brought to you by Phil Collins Serious Hits... Live!
It's Like Christmas Morning.
Great job everyone!
Screenshots Have Given Me A Massive Erection.
Great looking maps. Can't wait to play them.
Way to bring it (back)! Everything was master-crafted. And that Xmas secret was tops! Cheers!
especially bal (duh) but just overall, looks very very good!
Some Ace Shots
looks like a fantastic pack!
Btw Welcome Back Bal
I Too Have A Screenshot-induced Erection
And I look forward to relieving it by playing the pack later. It's like a later and significantly more exciting Christmas morning!
Muk Has Made The Most Crowded Map
to be honest most of the maps felt crowded probably becasue of the limitations. hard felt hard. i can recommend, gonna add a link to moddb and try to promote it tomorrow.
Error Loading Pritchards Map
progs\xmasjam\pritchard_chair.mdl not found
I checked, it's there.
Running QS 0.93.0 on linux
So I've Played A Few Of These.
The general result seems to be the themes - and variety of themes - are amazing, the layouts and intricacy are superb for the size, and the cool thematic designs are great - the vibes of some of these places and their surroundings are spot on.
The gameplay however gives the impression that the maps weren't tested for *first time* playthroughs especially with some of the AD monsters in very tight places. I'd rather be having more time pressing the fire button than F6/F9.
Not that surprising considering how finnicky the paths get in Quake. Maybe try -onlyents with the slashes flipped?
5th: Really well done map considering how late you started. I played on nightmare, it was tricky but felt pretty well balanced. I kinda felt like it would have been more fun with more boils. Awesome job :)
Bal: Dude, this was probably my favourite map along with ionous' beast. Wonderful detailing. I noticed a bug with quickloads and quicksaves with a wind sound not precached error, weird. Anyway. Nightmare was the skill and the gameplay was indeed a nightmare XD. But in a good way. Ammo was low, but I didn't really conserve it early on, so the fault was my own. Loved the hint of blue you added to the bottom of the pipes and rocks going into the white light, a nice touch. Also, cute mailbox.
Breezeep: Beautiful brushwork. I want this to be a bigger map :( The spaces felt a lot bigger than 1024. Some good encounters there too. Well balanced. Secret finding was fun and tricky too, although I may have had some help from my viewers XD
Dumptruck: Probably the most disappointing map of the bunch, not because of what it was. But because of what it could have been. There were hints of the quality we're used to from you, but they didn't carry throughout the whole map. A big shame. The geometry was fairly basic, and the layout was a little strange. The encounters in places felt untested or unrefined. I wish you had more time to polish this map up.
Redfield: What a pretty map. Interesting encounters, nice scripting and fun concept. The crystals and the castle were really gorgeous. Not much else to say really, thanks :)
Ionous: You are like a scripting god. It was amazing that you were able to fit that much stuff in that tiny amount of space and still have it look so pretty. Great theme, great brushwork and texture choices. Encounters were a little on the tricky side (but not outright unfair), I did play on nightmare after all. A good story to boot. While I thought other maps played a little better, your map is waaay up there in terms of aesthetics and execution, well done man.
Muk0r: Like Ionous, good job on getting so much stuff in such a little space. Great job on the theme and the brushwork. Sorry about missing those shootable shelves. Gameplay was tricky with the amount of ammo you gave. The backpacks were a cool idea, I think you just needed to stuff them fuller XD. There was a lot to love about this map, I kind of thought that the limitations of the size hindered it though. I would have liked to have seen this same map, with the same style geometry spread a little more, it would have felt more city-like and less maze-like.
Naitelveni: This map had really really strong gameplay. The geometry was good, so was the theme, but it was simple and seemed to be more a device for good gamplay than as something to ogle at. Thank you for the fun frag-fest. Those early shamblers were mighty hard on nightmare btw =P
Negke: Great brushwork. Interesting theme. The textures you used are very different from what I probably would have done myself (that isn't to say they're bad). How many textures did you use in this map? I feel like I could count them on two hands. Getting such an interesting theme with so few textures... Crazy. The map had some interesting encounters, probably not the best in the pack, but solid none the less. The exit mechanic was excellent, and took me a little while to work out. One tiny criticism, plz don't stretch textures like that with the windows :(
Pritchard: At the moment your map isnt working for me, I'll get back to you with some feedback once it is.
Tens: What an interesting theme! A fun map too considering how few monsters. Good job getting the crate and snow / caves areas to work with the ornate magical area. well set up boss fight too, especially considering that lack of playable area. was fun :)
Very cool maps and I really like how varied the styles are. It's like every map is completely different from the previous one. Good job everyone and thanks for participating.
Gameplay-wise, many of the maps are quite crowded and harder than usual due to the restricted space but also the specific use of AD enemies.
Bal: Very pleasant surprise return, hopefully the first of many maps. Impressive brushwork and details. Not too dark for me. Cool secrets.
Breezeep: Always amazes me how well the textures work in Quake despite being the opposite of dark brown. Nice-looking map. Gameplay tough but manageable with plenty of ammo. Would have wished for a more powerful weapon. Well, there's the widow maker secret, but I didn't find it until afterwards - the key can be grabbed through the bars by the way.
dumptruck_ds: Bit of a dungeon crawler. It's nice how at some point the map opens up into the big lava cave and the roof area. I would have wished for just a little more texture variety - some strong detail texture to be used throughout the level on the bigger walls perhaps. The tortured baby sounds (I hope you didn't record them yourself) are creepy as hell. The crib part.. you must really hate the Christmas miracle! :)
FifthElephant: This turned out rather cool, not what I expected from your blockout, even though I do recognize it. It was good fun. Didn't get the SSG, but there are at least two Shambler-style speed tricks to reach it that I spotted but didn't attempt or failed to pull off.
ionous: The style is great and I like the layout and how you progress through it. Maybe a bit over the top on monster density. I didn't check the books, though it seems you have a good story going on there? Visual novel and all...
ItEndsWithTens: Cheers for finishing it. Nice little map on a big scale, or small map with a big scale? Essentially a boss map. Wasn't hard due to LG OPness and respawning ammo, but a good finale to the pack.
mukor: It looks very nice and cozy, and I'm talking about the map, not the statues butt. Very consistent. Gameplay is another thing though, because I found it to be extremely hard and unforgiving due to a high monster count and quite insufficient supplies. I made the mistake of playing hard skill and died like seven times (actually, that's the reason there are no demos - I thought it would have been too painful to watch). Lol intermission.
Naitelveni: A rather intresting-looking level, the color combinations in particular. I didn't enjoy the gameplay much, because it was overly crowded and hard, mostly tight arena fights with obstacles.
negke: Bit of an alibi submission based on an old retrojam2 scrap and rushed to finish. I had started another map originally which was supposed to have an intricate mini layout like ionous' map, but it took too long and I realized I wouldn't be able to finish it in time, so instead I finished this one.
Pritchard: Very atmospheric 'cabin in the woods' realism map, nicely pulled off and good details. Layout feels good and how you deal with each floor. The levers could have been highlighted better. The end fight was too extreme for me and I cheated. Does one get a reward for breaking all crates?
Redfield: Cute and nicely done diorama of Vondur's iceberg Disney's movie. Totally unquakey visuals creating a unique experience. Not sure it's an apt comparison, but it left a Xen-like impression. Yay for the super secret.
Joke failed: it should read
Pritchard/Shamblernaut: upon checking the map file, the path to the chair model is all wrong - it uses double backslashes. I did change it so the chair model would be in progs\xmasjam. But I have no idea how the \\ could have happened or if it had been there before. I'm very sorry if it was indeed my fault.
I would have supplied a quick .ent fix, but it turns out Pritchard apparently to BSP2 (wtf?!) so the bspinfo tool can't read it.
Double-backslashes was a bug/problem in an older TrenchBroom build (rc3 I think?). The map was probably saved in that TB version at one point.
tyrann's and my bsputil has "--extract-entities" which saves out a .ent file and works on bsp2.
Coverage Of The Pack
I'm still playing through all the maps, will post more extensively when I'm done, but what I've played so far is great. Good mix of themes!
It turns out my map is a bit too hard (play on skill 1!), and a bit too dark (increase brightness!) Thanks to all the people sending demos, streams and videos, it's very educational and entertaining!
If anyone is interested, I've uploaded the additional cr8 textures I made for the map:
Nothing major, a few new ones, and lots of tweaks of existing textures to make them more versatile, or to remove the dark borders that are annoying when using them on convex edges (mostly with the trims).
Double backslashes were still affecting me in RC4 but I thought I went back and manually edited them out in notepad...
I'm probably going to upload a new version with some much-needed improvements in about a week and a bit, once I get home from this vacation... Thanks for all the feedback so far, everyone!
Thanks for the feedback. I don't hate the Christmas miracle for the record. No babies were harmed in the making of this map! But very glad it was effective. It was the first idea I had for the map but the latest thing I added.
As far as detail and polish. Guilty as charged. I simply ran out of time on the detail pass but referenced ad_mountain quite often. That map uses very few textures but does a much better job with detailing than I could hope to.
Thanks for playing.
Hot Load Of Feedback All Over The Statue
Having played mostly id1 stuff for a while now, it took a bit to remember the quirks of AD's bestiary and entities, plus the eye-openers (i.e. "Holy fucking shit there's zombie knights now oh god"). Comments in alphabetical map order, typed up while playing, all on skill 2:
5th: Short and sweet, not sure if I found the super shotgun secret properly though (used a ramp jump off the tiny lip of the stairs by the axe, then did a midair 180 to air strafe to the platform). Was expecting to get something extra for getting the Vore to kill all the zombies, but so far as I could tell it was just extra kills. The four pillar fight at the end is frantic but the third pillar didn't actually spawn anything- possibly related to the order I touched them or maybe just a crossed trigger someplace? Enjoyed the visuals throughout (despite the noticeable dithering on the stained glass textures, argh!) and gibbing the bunch of zombies at the end with the Widowmaker was extremely satisfying. 7:26, 2/2 secrets, 61/61 kills.
Bal: #1 thing I loved about this map was watching it fall apart as stuff blew up while progressing- platforms breaking, water pipes spewing, lights flickering and buzzing. #2 was finally getting the 'A-ha!' moment for the red armor and plasmagun, although I still missed a chockload of secrets. Some parts of the map seemed darker than they should be, or maybe it was just the detailing making everything more visually noisy than I'm used to- a worthwhile trade, then, the visual style is great. Industrial pipe-mazes are my favorite sort of base map. 22-ish minutes, 5/9 secrets, 134/137 kills, think a few Fiends jumped off the roof before I could kill them.
Breezeep: Died the first try due to corner-induced Knight rape, second playthrough went much smoother. Only found the second secret once I'd killed everything so it was less than helpful, but that's 100% my bad- had to double back for it for 100% completion anyway. Books are fun. I was expecting to venture into a few more of the barred-off rooms, and was surprised when I was free to go after getting just the silver key, thinking the gold one was required. ikwhite textures are always eye-pleasing. 10:06, 2/2 secrets, 42/42 kills.
Dumptruck: The bit with the lava isn't too fun, mostly because it's easy to take a bit of knockback from either the Lost Soul exploding or the crossbow grunt in the window and going careening off to your death. Visually the level is okay, much better in the lava areas, the interior felt somewhat like AD's own Lavatop Mountain except more monotonous. The crying was creepy as fuck, and shooting its source at the end was cheesy but fitting. I liked the base enemies breaking in towards the end, but due to my lack of health at the time I hid and let them fight the Shamblers until they were dead (apparently the Shamblers didn't fight back at all, or they would have wiped the flying grunts and Bobs easily). 12:47, 2/2 secrets, 45/45 kills, 1 pair of new pants required after the crying.
Redfield (icequeen): Wow, that's a design for a map I wasn't expecting. Short and sweet-ish, still died twice from jumping to my death, first trying to find secrets, then trying to sequence break. Oops. Fighting is tight underground and short up above, thought the map was going to be way longer and I think I might've missed something- I saw the Thunderbolt secret in the caves, figured out to shoot the snowflake in front of it, shot the other four throughout the map, but by the time that secret is unlocked, the level exit (a sprite cutout of Ilsa? Orsa? Blazka? Whatever her name is) is directly in front of me so there's no reason to go all the way back down. 6:08, 1/3 secrets, 21/32 kills (!); another short playthrough after reading the Readme led to the Super Secret Secret, which was... interesting, and led to 2/3 secrets, 30/32 kills. Still never got that Thunderbolt.
Ionous: Excellent use of the limited map dimensions, felt like it was a lot bigger than it actually is. Snazzy visuals, loved trying to find the secrets and was honestly disappointed that I didn't find all of them despite my best efforts, reminded me of following the story in AD's ad_mountain- what happened to Johnston? Another playthrough might reveal more without giving up and looking at the readme, poor bastard has the worst luck. One of the secrets was also apparently grabbed out of order, not sure how that happened. Tight combat, but the underwater bit was annoying (or maybe I'm just an idiot) due to taking damage and not being sure where it was coming from (above the player, it turns out), and at one point I completely ran out of ammo and had to go mano y mano with some Death Knights with just the shadow axe until I managed to scrounge up some shells and nails- not sure if that was on accident or intentional as the axe seemed to do a damn good job at stunlocking the Knights. 26:16, 7/10 secrets, 118/122 kills.
Accidentally wrote 10,000 characters. Second post below.
Feedback 2: Not Spam
Mukor: Your map made me incredibly angry, and the thicc statue ass unfortunately did not make up for it, nor did the erection from the shitpost-worthy intermission screen that I only saw after changing routes in one last save and realizing the exit was right behind the gold key door, and that I could have rushed right by the enemies to the exit instead of fiddling about going rooftop-jumping to find secrets and ending up with even less health and ammo than if I had just gone straight through the door. Ammo in general was ridiculously scarce, lots of axe-swinging between backpack finds and that wasn't much fun at all. Similar to Redfield's map in that there's secrets to be had but no point in getting them when the exit is so close. Multiple staircases in the map are really easy to get caught up on when climbing them and for the love of God, in the future please make the tiny doorways a bit wider; I'm far from the best Quake player in the world but it feels pretty lame to suffer multiple deaths because I approached the doorway angled slightly wrong while backpedaling and became Knight shish kebab. Also somewhat annoying: a fair amount of nails but lots of stone enemies who are 50% resistant to them. Did not actually finish in one run period; found 2/4 secrets (as the Quad under the lift doesn't count as one?).
Naitelveni: The single map I died the most on. Not sure if it's because of playing on Hard instead of Normal or what, but holy cow, infuriating. Especially the dual Shambler fight with the Vore up on the platform and nowhere to hide because a dozen other enemies just spawned in, including the goddamn weeaboo samurai Knights in that fight and the next one. Also annoying as all hell: having to wait around on tiny, slow lifts while multiple Z-aware Ogres lob grenades at you that you can't always dodge by jumping, and are almost guaranteed to eat one or two to the face and get sent all the way back down unless you spent five minutes pecking away at them from below. Don't know how the hell it's even possible to win without the hidden Plasmagun's firepower. 4:43, 1/1 secrets, 38/41 kills (not sure what happened here, I think someone spawned into a wall or something because I still heard grunts and the final "Only X left to go..." text might've counted wrong somehow).
Negke: First part of the map is very dark and dingy, almost too brown and pretty same-looking, basically just unfinished looking. After that it looks a lot better, and the spattering of wall lights give just enough light to see what's going on. Another ammo-scarce map, albeit not on the level of previous ones, so no axe-swinging here. Not much to say I guess other than there were a few spots I was surprised to find clip brushes preventing me from shooting between bits of bridge or floor, surprising as a number of other maps seemed to enjoy giving the player inch-wide gaps to try to hit Scrags and Ogres through while being pelted by vomit and grenades. 11:57, 3/4 secrets, 46/46 kills.
Pritchard: This was an interesting one. The setting was nice and cozy, although the bright orange lights for most of the map could've been toned back a bit or made a bit more neutral, the red glow on everything kind of gets eye-watering after a while. On the third and final attempt, the entrance to the final arena glitched: Somehow the sequence was started while I was still in the button area, so when I actually hit the button the door closed instead of opened and I had to noclip through. Also got an accidental telefrag on the final boss, who from the gibs I'm not even sure was supposed to be but I do know it made things a lot easier. Found the Quad after already killing everything, of course- actually grabbing it in the fight seems like it would be schmuck bait given it's tucked away in the corner. 12:35, 4/5 secrets, 69/74 kills. I broke every damn box in the map and not a single one had anything inside and that was disappointing.
Tens: Over in a flash, but fun and a great cool-down map after getting repeatedly destroyed. I managed to die anyway because I'm an idiot (or sleep-deprived), but the teleport back for players who decide to get risky with their jumps is nice. Wish it had been longer, the art style was cool and I wasn't expecting the cave to open up to an icy abyss at all. Wasn't sure which secret is unveiled by finding all the breakable crates, still wasn't sure but found the third secret after finishing the map. 6:40, 2/3 secrets, 13/13 kills.
All in all, a fun map pack and good work by everyone showcasing just how much you can do in a 1024u³ play area with some creativity and elbow grease. Way more than I thought possible, that's for sure! No demos unfortunately because even zipped they're over a quarter gig and that's more upload bandwidth than I've got in any reasonable amount of time, not that it matters because I just vomited text all over the page like a dork.
I appreciate everybody's notes, thanks! I recorded videos for all the other entries, and they're in the process of going up on Youtube, with a little as-yet-unrecorded post mortem for my own at the end. Keep an eye on this playlist
if you're interested in learning why I did things.
In the meantime, though, I thought it was important to point out to Pritchard that I encountered the same bug as Spud. Poking around shows you ran into the same issue I did in Retro Jam 4, that touching the corner of a space opposite the corner of a trigger will still activate it.
Hard to explain, but in your map, face the button that's meant to open the slanted door leading to the final room. Turn left, look at the small set of stairs, and go down underneath. There's a trigger brush whose nearest corner touches the edge formed by the lowest step of that small staircase and the floor. If a player's collision touches that edge, the trigger is fired. Unfortunate, but shrinking the trigger's brush by 8 or 16 units on each side to get it away from the walls and ceiling should do the trick; keeps the bug from happening, but still prevents players from walking through without activating it.
So creative and aesthetic.. this still beats most modern games for me..
Next Maps Will Have Something In The Boxes
Most consistent feedback so far lmao
if butts dont make up for bad maps im a dead man.
sorry about the ammo count. balancing resources between backpacks was pretty hard.
as far as the final secret, yeah i fucked up. :( i didnt give the player extra+ ammo for it.
Butts Are Still Good, Though
Hey, you gave it yer best. To be fair it was a very fine butt, even with the intermission's extra sound effect.
Speaking of secrets though, what exactly is the correct player route to get to the last two secrets (the rooftop path that goes through the skylight to the super nailgun and has the secret-within-a-secret area)? I saw the brick stairs on top of the bookcase, but couldn't figure out how to get up there other than an explosive jump (which I had no weapons capable of) so I wound up doing some Tony Hawk ramp jump and backwards air control shit off one of the curved bits of wall in front of it, but that felt super janky so there's no way that was the correct method.
Its a bit of a small circle jump from the broken section of wall over to the window. It does seem to be a bit harder than I recall in my playtests.
#30 Is Right Too.
What A Christmas!
Well its finally here and I am loving it! Just finished all the maps in the jam, and I had a hell of a lot of fun. I've got a large .zip with demos for every map, so mappers and demo lovers take a look:
5th - A great map considering how much time you had. Loved the zombie trap, and the large arena at the end had me running for my life! A great knave style map.
Bal - What can I say? How many pipes are in this map and where do they go? A detailed masterpiece with great gameplay to boot. An amazing base map dripping with atmosphere. Take note demo watchers - if you want to see where EVERYTHING is watch this demo.
Breezeep - I love ikwhite so this map jumped out at me when I loaded it. It feels like an ever expanding arena, and I like the carpets and many arches. Had fun on this one - where can I order one of those rugs?
Dumptruckds - A good old Dissolution of Eternity/Firetop Mountain textured map. The baby was disturbing and I really liked the trippy battle sequence at the end. Without a doubt the cave and lava section was beautiful and the highlight but it was tricky to navigate. Also, in my mind I killed the baby ANTIchrist, cause I can't blaspheme:)
Ionous - Those Unreal textures! What an amazing layout and beautiful use of textures. This map also has a dark story hidden in the secrets and... EELS. 11/10 for that eel factor.
Mukor - Like a mini AD swampy this map is intricately detailed in the true AD style. Full of traps and surprises, the layout twists and turns you around right to the end. The statue is also a great centerpiece.
Naitelveni - The Tower of Terror! An intense assault from start to end, I was challenged by this. I love a good arena map as a change of pace, and that red floor was really atmospheric. A neat layout for an arena, but damn those z-aware ogres, I just can't stand them!
negke - This map really creeped me out at the start. Great way to keep the player confused and I liked the very old-school maze like vibes. A very dark map, and a unique puzzle based end. Good stuff!
Pritchard - This has stunning atmosphere! Loved the cottage and those trees! The coloured lighting worked really well as you descend and the combat was tight and brutal. I smashed EVERYTHING and wished the secrets incorporated more breakables. The outside part was so pretty I wanted to play out there more...
Tens - This was incredible! If you were delusional after staying up all night - man sanity is overrated. The vistas were fantastic, and I have never seen these textures before. Great use of a boss monster makes this short map a real challenge.
Redfield - Yes I have a 100% demo of this for those demo enthusiasts. I pointed out in the readme as well that I was really unhappy with the combat on this. I spent a lot of time on textures, trees and music(which I love) but I just couldn't do much with the monsters on this strange map. I'm glad some people have been having fun with it though.
Thanks For The Feedback!
In regards to the gold key secret, I didn't really know that you could grab it through the bars. It's something I didn't think about at the time because I was scrambling to finish the map and send it out. In other words, glad you're all enjoying this!
Going To Be Finishing Out The Pack
Starts in about thirty minutes.
XMas Jam 2017 On The Quake Grave
In case anyone missed it, I have my jam playthrough up to watch:
Amazing job everyone! I think that everyone had a really unique take on the theme and it made playing through it pretty exciting because you didn't know what would happen next.
There isn't a bad map in the bunch, but I will agree with some of the other critiques that a couple do feel a bit cramped. Other than that, I didn't have any really big issues with any of them.
Great job all, really looking forward to what you all do in 2018!
Here is a little .ent file that addresses two issues in Pritchard's map, namely the missing chair models on certain OS, and some monsters that previously refused to spawn.
You can call me stupid, but did you guys try Bal's map in id1 Quake? Totally lives up to its name! You start the map and BOOM FIEND AND GRUNTS AND DOGS ALL JUMP AT YOU AT THE SAME TIME AND ALL YOU HAVE IS A BOOMSTICK POW THE NEXT ROOM IS EVEN A MORE OF A COMPLETE CLUSTERFUCK
A warm welcome home indeed.
Anyways, it's an amazing map if played as intended!
Hah yeah I saw someone play on stream like that cause he'd forgotten to load AD, was really wondering what the hell he did to break my map so badly at first.
The designs in this pack are awesome. Highlights:
1. Great variety of themes.
2. Strong themes in all maps. Like really strong.
3. Great atmosphere in many maps. Some of them are so creative they actually feel like little introductions to new games.
4. Use of the restrictions really effective for interesting, explorative, convoluted layouts on a smaller scale.
5. Use of the restrictions also good for interesting scenery surrounding the map, some really cool atmosphere-enhancing non-gameplay designs.
6. In short the vibes are spot on, the maps are often very cute and really engrossing. I think it's been a great exercise in just how good small maps can be.
7. Secrets good too.
(I haven't gone into specifics here as it's pretty obvious which bits have been so effective. The less creative maps have still be good and stylish in their own right too).
The gameplay is a bit more problematic overall, with a lot of maps being unduly hard, not in a "git gud" sort of way, but with some recurring and specific issues:
1. Maps are very difficult to get through first go due to a combination of "health-chipping" encounters mixed with fierce AD monster encounters that if you can't predict them or really save health for them are often insta-death.
2. The AD monsters in a cramped environment are harder than usual, I do think AD maps have been previously been used in larger scale maps with more player manouverability options, and this hasn't been taken into account here.
3. I'm guessing that due to the size of the maps, that mappers and playtesters have been able to play them repeatedly (unlike testing a 600 monster map) and thus have become very familiar with the play situations.
This has made several of the maps quite gruelling but the designs have been exciting enough to keep me persisting. Long live small scale maps!
Awesome map man, Really solid theme. Thoroughly enjoyable.
I played on nightmare, I thought that the density of enemies and choices of enemies were really good. Maybe a tiny touch too easy, but this criticism would be nitpicking. The gameplay was probably one of the most balanced in the pack.
I missed a lot of secrets. I'm not sure if this is because I'm rubbish or because they could have been conveyed a little better.
Did I mention how much I liked the theme? The outdoor area was excellent, and I really liked the tip-of-the iceberg vibe to the building. Especially the descent from house to basement / storeroom to unfamiliar rooms / evil worship place.
Great map, thanks :)
I Will Say...
...one slight gameplay frustration with some of these was actually an effect of how nice the designs were - I kept getting entranced by the vibes (did I mention i like small convoluted strongly themed maps) and forgetting to quicksave....
Map De Bal.
Difficult to say anything that already hasn't been said about this gem of a map - such a highly polished, well built place. I played in normal QS, so no fancy volumetric fog-like particles, but I didn't mind. It looked really good even though thematically it was a fairly nondescript base.
My one niggle is the usual videogame-y progression felt a bit out of place: for example, there isn't much logic to pressing two pillar buttons to activate a small lift next room. Usually in Quake this matters practically never, but with this level of professionalism it was a little odd.
Very well done map, hope the next one comes soon!
The trademark high difficulty is back. I managed to fit within just one demo this time, even though I still played very sloppily.
The map does kind of show that it was made quickly before the deadline, though it's rather well done. I think I would have preferred subtler lighting, as I'm not fully convinced the dark monster skins fit very well with the white stone.
The outside area kept teasing me.
I liked the books.
Nice map overall!
Another map that could have done with some more time, and some moodier lighting.
This map somehow felt simultaneously small and too open at the same time. It was nice to have those tiny lifts everywhere, it reminded me of E4M8 in a way. It also makes me want to revisit my dm4 remix in this theme... :qthink:
I did like the revisiting of areas (though some more consistency would be nice, rather than making it sometimes a door opening, and sometimes a hole in the wall blowing open) and the twist on the ending.
Somehow I failed to connect the map together thematically (as seen in me tragically failing the ending).
A decent map, all things considered!
well i played some of the maps and i must say that i'm impressed with ionous map, it's like a textbook case of reusing spaces.
Ionous Map Manages To Pack A 4096 Layout Into 1024.
So well done. The starting bit was a gem with 32 monsters fitting in fine to one tiny area. I actually had dreams about this after trying it the first time (and, ahem, ragequitting the zombie trap after forgetting to quicksave......)
Also a textbook case of using... textbooks
Oh Yeah I Didn't Read Those Fucking Things.
I liked finding them tho....
Xmas Bal V2
Somewhat much easier on a second playthrough finding all the secrets, there's a lot of loot and tactics to manage it for the beefier ending. Although the super-secret was a bit of.....bundle of fun.
Xmas Ionous V2
Somewhat much easier on a third playthrough finding most of the secrets (the last two I couldn't actually see how they could fit into the uber-compact map), there's a lot of loot and tactics to manage it for the difficulty spikes.
As usual, I liked this to bits. Good vibes, and surprisingly light-on-single-shotgun gameplay.
About 'Super Secrets'
So these are really hard to pull of successfully, although I think Bal's map did a really good job of surprising the player with the secret. In most cases it seems the player will have to go backtracking and find missing secrets/things in order to unlock the 'super secret'.
It seems difficult to figure out where to place such a secret, if it is placed just before the ending it would seem logical, but if the player has missed something in the unlock sequence they may ignore it and finish the map. If it is placed near the beginning, the player will still have to backtrack to unlock it.
I think the mapper can make a conscious decision that the super secret will require backtracking, or it is there to encourage replay of the map. This is what I tried to do, by placing many monsters in the secret, and because the player has to backtrack to unlock it I hoped they will either explore more, or do a second playthrough. I agree with @Spud, I can see that this is not a perfect setup and maybe the super secret should be more natural to find. Does anyone have any examples of great super secrets in other maps?
Anyways this jam was really awesome to play through because of the diversity in the map themes. It was almost in some senses a theme-less jam.
@57 Re: Natural Super Secrets
Does anyone have any examples of great super secrets in other maps?
Given that this mapjam requires Arcane Dimensions be installed to play, it seems fair to mention the maps in AD itself, four of which include mod-relevant super secrets, that being the runes to collect. Two I'm gonna single out are ad_mountain (Firetop Mountain, by sock) and ad_cruical (Crucial Error, by mfx).
Firetop Mountain has already shown up multiple times in this thread (and I misspelled it as 'Lavatop'- whoops!) and is an overall great example of how to make a super secret- setting the player on a side-quest that runs alongside their normal level progress from the instant they see the first ghostly Knight at the map entrance, telling a neat story along the way, and most importantly, giving hints to how to progress towards the secret even if they miss a step or the initial apparition. The path is constantly changing as well- one second you're just looking for ghosts, then it's finding skeletons in the vents, then it's an arena fight as you get to watch the spectres make their way to the hidden room, etc. and it's all completely optional, with mini-secrets along the way like the Widowmaker shotgun.
In contrast, Crucial Error has its entire super secret route only available if you find the 'end point' near the start of the map, that being the locked door hidden behind a breakable vent in an air duct. However, unlike every other instance of a breakable vent in the map, this single vent has no visible crack giving the player a glimpse to the other side, and it's entirely likely they won't even realize it's breakable as there's a Grunt directly in front of it who will absorb their fire- if you're good enough to not miss a shot, you probably won't deal enough damage to break the vent. Worse, if they do manage to break it, the previous precedent demonstrated in the map- that being "breakable vents are marked with a crack" is broken, leading to an inquisitive player having to smack/shoot every single vent texture in the map (of which there are dozens if not more) to make sure the same trick wasn't pulled again. The secret itself is just a tiny room with a rune in it, unlocked by finding some computer chips- if you don't find the room itself first, the chips don't spawn in the map and you don't even get a hint that they exist.
There's a portal error in my map. When you walk over the bridge towards the small room with the window that reveals the ring, the upper metal tile on the ramp disappears. No weird brushwork involved, or any errors in the QBSP output, so there's no reason this should happen?! No such issue with the XT utils. Any idea what's going on there?
Argh, sorry. I see it - will look into it.
What A Workout
I didn't realize a Christmas theme jam also meant the hardest maps ever! But I loved it. A great job to everyone.
Demos for each map, hard skill. Not all a first run, but played each time until I could get through it in one sitting.
Updated With A Bonus Map From Sock
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