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New Q1SP: Conflagrant Rodent
After a year and a half of on and off working, my map is finally ready for release. Get ready for a journey through a broken down castle, flooded with water and lava, inhabited by over a hundred baddies.

The first part of the map may seem a little dull, climbing through the cave. But once you reach the castle itself is when the real fun starts.

All skill levels are supported. Hard is hard, easy is easy, etc. So if you play on hard, be prepared for a tough fight.

I have spent so much time and sweat into making this map look the absolute best it can possibly be. To make it not only look good, but play good. This map is more complex than anything I have ever built in the past.

Because of being such a large map, it pushes the boundaries and limits of Quake, so an enhanced engine is required to play. Fitzquake, Enhanced GLQuake, DirectQ, and Darkplaces should all suffice.

Map info such as vis time and construction etc can be found in the oms2.txt. The texture .wad is also included in the .zip

Thanks to my testers: Necros, =peg=, Polarite, Cortex and Rocketguy for their very helpful advice.

Thanks to Willem for his modified multithreaded vis tool.

Thanks to Metlslime for his newskip tool.

And finally, special thanks to aguiRe for his patience, tools, and skills, for without his help and dedication, this map would not have been possible. You rock man :)

The only thing left to do now is download and have fun! And as always, first run demos are appreciated :)

Screenshots:
http://qrf.mine.nu/~orl/oms2s1.jpg
http://qrf.mine.nu/~orl/oms2s2.jpg
http://qrf.mine.nu/~orl/oms2s3.jpg
http://qrf.mine.nu/~orl/oms2s4.jpg

Download: http://qrf.mine.nu/~orl/oms2.zip
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E2M7 
 
Caves 
This is easily the best "cave style" map that has ever been made for Quake, imho. 
Re: Lighting 
I've just noclipped through the map again when my monitor was still cold, and then it looked good and moody. Yesterday it had already been on for a couple of hours - the picture gets brighter the more it warms up. 
 
Nice map Orl, but there is one problems with arch (maybe its problem of my client - directQ) - I tried ~20 times to get into the hole where 1st secret located (the only way is /noclip) but no luck.
Final secret was great, but what is the reason to put teleporter to final room near the door to it? Didn't managed to find the 3rd one :/ 
Thanks All For The Kind Words 
I understand your complaints, the map is far too easy. I need to tighten health and ammo, put in more monsters and traps with less space to move around :)

But in all seriousness, yes the map is hard. But I honestly didn't think it was that hard. I will have to reconsider what is easy and what is hard for future maps. I have no trouble completing the map on hard skill, but I don't take nightmare skill into account, because I think its rather unfair.

I have watched all your demos and enjoyed them :)

@negke: You were the most critical of all. While I watched your demo, it seemed like you weren't enjoying yourself, which makes it seem like I failed to provide you a fun experience. I understand its important to point out small inconsistencies like floating brushes and torches but gee whiz, when you see one pixel out of place you go crazy :D

But make no mistake, I'm glad you pointed those things out. Its only to help improve for later.

As for the lighting, like I said with your map it wasn't really an issue at all. I'm not trying to be hypocritical or anything. And what you got against minlight? :)

@RaverX: You are right, when you play the map enough times, you know it inside out, and it becomes much easier, not good for beta testing.

@Spirit: My apologies for that.

@metlslime: Yes, I do realize now that some parts of the map, especially the final area is a bit cheap with the ambushes. I guess I thought at the time, it wouldn't have been so bad.

@AAS: There is a small ledge that you have to land on near the hole, which will make it easier to jump in the hole. Its to the left of the hole, a bit hard to see. I'm not sure what you mean when you say what the reason is to put a teleporter to final room near the door to it. Could you elaborate on that?

And to everyone, onetruepurple, RaverX, Vondur, gb, steveanus, RickyT23, lxndr, negke, Ankh, roblot, generic, Lizard, Drew, Bloodshot, metlslime, Baker and AAS, thank you all for the kind words, they are very much appreciated. And despite the maps faults, I'm glad you all enjoyed it :) 
Difficulty 
i think a good rule of thumb is to always rank a skill level 1 higher than what you think it is.

like, if you're playing and you feel 'this is about normal skill for me'. then it's actually hard. if it feels way too easy, it's probably just about right for normal.

don't worry, i think nearly all mappers get this unless they get lucky or have some kind of prior experience. 
Well 
I want to say first and foremost that I like the map, but I'm going to be really critical so it might seem like I don't like it when I really do.

Too many 'ruined' areas, which hogged all the detail and left the rest of the map both chuggish (that's partly due to the exuberant smoothness of the terrain) as well as boring to look at. I would recommend spreading out the detail by a bit, even it out and realize you only have to give the 'idea' of a ruined temple/whatever.

Too many jumping puzzles and things of that sort. A couple areas imo suffered because of the jumping puzzle-ness of nearby areas, where the combat space felt much too small because it made room for jumping puzzle space.

The ending especially was too damn small. It was such a huge finale but I'm stuck on this little platform - would have been better in a bigger arena where I could at least move around, and you could have also spread out where the enemies spawn from to make it that much more a dynamic experience.

The path was not overly confusing, but I did get lost once or twice trying to find my way back. It's one of the hardest things to do with a more non-linear level like this, but keeping the main path clear is important and (only in a couple spots!) I think the map failed.

I did like some of the more exploratory areas, especially the 3-button area. I got lost, but it was still a good bit of searching, and risking false comparisons, felt a bit like Zelda or some other adventure game. That was cool.

Good stuff, looking forward to your next map. 
Demos - Skill 2 
I have tried skill 2 on my second run through.
It wasn't that hard with the experience from my first run (except for the lava death traps).
the final battle also is manageable. I have recorded a separate demo without quad and survived on first try.
http://www.quaketastic.com/upload/files/demos/oms2_ankh_hard.zip 
 
@Orl
http://i37.tinypic.com/50go54.jpg
I told about this teleporter - what it for?
I already opened a door to the final room and IMO there is no need to extra tele with a same destination. 
 
Orl: Nah, it wasn't all that bad. I just would have wished for more casual gameplay at times, less near-death experiences. I usually don't watch my firstrun demos, so maybe they unintentially make me come across as a dick? Commenting on things I see (and occasinally cursing) may interrupt the usual flow, but they are really just to make it more interesting for you to watch - live feedback, so to speak. You could say pedantry is my middle name, but the things I mentioned are really my pet peeves, stuff that could have been easily avoided in a final release.

Minlight, however low, makes the map look washed out. The brighter the monitor is (or becomes), the more noticable it is. Besides, it's pro and leet and cool to hate on it. :) Like I said, the map looked better when I loaded it on a cold screen.

AAS: The teleporter most likely is for coop mode. 
Great Map ! 
I had MHColour 2009 make a .lit file for it.
It took 8 (!) hours to complete, that should be a record. But it looks great ! I am a great fan of maps like this. They give you a real sense of exploration.

Quote from Negke "I could have skipped a large part of the map as I jumped up the rocks in front of the large broken gate at first. :)"

I did that too. The 1st thing I do with new maps is trying them out for stuff like that.

I love it so far, I'm going to finish it now ! 
 
Fantastic !
I only got 184 monsters, maybe because I didn't find any secrets ? The ending is a little difficult, but the monsters fighting each other can really help you out there. Besides that, you could go there with 100 + health and yellow armor from the silver key area, so it's not at all undo-able.

Really, a great map ! 
Great Work 
I finally had the time to play this and it was great fun. I loved the architecture and all those impressive rocks and caves. All those damaged buildings were super.

It was a bit too hard for me on skill 0 but not impossible. I had to /god 2 times including the end fight. I guess I could have made the end fight with more space but I couldn't use my grenades in that tight spot and had no LG so how was I supposed to kill all of those monsters?! As long as I had ammo for SNG it was ok but afterwards it seemed impossible. I had no QUAD though, only secret I found was the MH very early.

The lava traps annoyed me sometimes, I saved and loaded often because of those and /noclipped out of a few. (I know I'm a Quake SP lamer, hehe.)

The cage taking you over the lava and the animation when the door to the final fight opened were especially cool.

A great map overall. I found no floating brushes and though the lighting doesn't look to hot on those screenies it didn't bother me in-game. I'll watch the demos Ankh posted now.

Thumbs up from me Orl. 
Btw I Forgot 
33:52, 1/3, 135/138 @ skill 0 
Holy Fuck 
I thought this was brilliant!! The visual style is spectacular and I thought the gameplay was tough but not frustrating on Normal (end is fine if you have the GL with a bit of ammo).

Only gripe was a few slowdowns, basically in big open areas with not much visblocking which the quake engine struggles with too much. 
What Nitin Said. 
Amazing map. The designs are next level business. So many cool details.

The big area was ridiculously slow but great to play around. I went the wrong way which was fun.

All the ruined bits and water / lava details were ace.

The lava jumping was fairly annoying. I did okay with it but it was mostly due to luck which is dissatisfying.

The gameplay was mostly fine, sometimes good especially in the slow bit. It was hard on hard but okay in most places where you had room to think. Only the lava lift was annoying....again due to lava not fighting.

The ending was farcical. Not sure how that slipped through in an otherwise excellent map?? I guess your playtesters didn't test that bit.

Thankfully there's an easy way to avoid it. Grenade jump past the YA and this triggers the exit rock but not the door bars. Either exit or just return to the door and kill things as normal. 
Re: Ending 
that was the one part of the map that i didn't have problems with, ironically.

it hinges on anticipating where monsters will spawn and on my first run, i guessed right and lobbed grenades onto the raised floor. the only tight part was the shambler, but if you catch the other monsters right, you should have enough armor and health left to take a few hits from the shambler before you down it.
or at least, that's how it was for me. o.o 
 
never found the sng, so 2 shamblers and a bunch of scrags landing on my head at the end with just the ng was a bit too difficult. not impossible, but not fun either.

the rest of the map was great. i was expecting it to be too difficult and not enough ammo from what others said, but it was pretty normal. adequate ammo and health.

i loved all the little broken bits that you have to climb up and down. unique and excellent design. 
Hang On 
at least on normal, you get the NG and SNG together dont you? 
 
yeah, they are near the start, after you climb up the sides of the big cavern, iirc. then the NG again at the end of the long ramp jumping section. 
Yes. 
Luck dependent = toss. Maps should test a player's skill not random luck.

SNG and NG are together on hard. 
Shambler 
does that mean you think randomisation of game features is bad as well? Because it might throw you a fiend at an inopportune moment, for example, or give you a hellknight instead of a knight.

Jumping across lava isn't entirely luck-dependant either; it comes down to how well you can handle the controls and judge distances. I do think that there should usually be a way out of lava though - like in that Unreal level with breaking bridges over lava. You can fall in, but depending on how well you look around (and how little you panic), there are ways out of it.

Quake's lava is more deadly than Unreal's though, I think.

Just dumping the guy into lava with no way out is just a very slow trigger_void :-/

and instadeath is usually bad. Death is too much of a punishment for failing a jump. Falling into a pit full of monsters would be OK. 
GB, Randomisation. 
No, as long as it's done in balance. Most situations throwing a HK at you instead of a K will be okay. Guessing where and what monsters will spawn in a small unmanouverable room is less okay (as many people have found).

Lava jumps, no not luck dependent, but can be annoying as they are a tangential Quake skill rather than a core one (and we tend to play for the core skills, or we'd be playing jump puzzle games).

I agree with your last paragraphs, I enjoy jumping puzzles more then the penalty is something other than certain death. 
Killer 
 
Mitigated 
Well, this map is architecturally really fine, with very good details, very good layout. Texturing has been very well chosen, that could have been even more beautiful if lightning effects have been better (there sould need more contrast IMHO... though...)

But: in term of gameplay I didn't liked it at all, even after several tries I found the map way too hard. I also noticed several items (health for most of them) falling off the world on map load, that does not help the player to survive, particularly poor killer like me ;)... so I had to godmode in order to progress, and I ran out of ammo several times so I have to refill by myself (i.e give <S/N/R> 100)

Anyway, I'd rather prefer to see a good looking map with bad gameplay, rather than the opposite: visuals are really important to me, but it is my personal taste afterall..

I'm in anyway looking forward to a next map from you: keep it up ! 
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