UnderPlants: "Or, E1M(AP)02!"

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UnderPlants: "Or, E1M(AP)02!"

Postby kinker31 » Mon Aug 10, 2020 5:26 pm

m02screen.jpg


As the picture might suggest, this is my attempt at a loose mashup between E1M2's Power plant and MAP02's Underhalls.
I got the idea to make the map after listening to this song, especially taking a look at the icon for it!
I even included a little homage to an XBox-Exclusive map, if you know where to look! Hint: If you know how to get to said level, you already mostly know what to do.

Get your pair of Underplants in the inline below!:
E1MAP02.zip


[V1.1: Fixed a few unintentional texture bugs, better implemented difficulty settings, and adjusted the rewards you get from finding this map's secrets]
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Last edited by kinker31 on Wed Aug 12, 2020 1:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: UnderPlants: "Or, E1M(AP)02!"

Postby Enjay » Mon Aug 10, 2020 6:51 pm

This is really cool. I really enjoyed this map. The mashup works brilliantly. At every turn, I was definitely in somewhere that I recognised from E1M2 or MAP02 but the two blended together really well. :thumb:
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Re: UnderPlants: "Or, E1M(AP)02!"

Postby Enjay » Wed Aug 12, 2020 6:58 am

I've played though it a few more times, so some comments for things that I feel could be looked at.

The E1M2 central computer area at the start (where you can go up to get to the MAP02-style switches and red key bars) feels a bit cramped. Possibly not much can be done here without quite a bit of re-work to that area.

Some of the secrets are hard to find because they have very little/nothing to give a clue that the wall might be activatable (or whatever). Some seem to rely on the player knowing that "there should be a secret around here somewhere because there was in the original map" whereas some others are found mostly as a result of wall-humping. To be fair, most do have a clue to their existence.

The rest are more straight forward bugs:

The lift near the exit is missing a lower texture. When it goes down, there is nothing on the wall behind it.


This secret teleport has two problems:

The blue water platform has no lower side textures so it looks a bit funky. This could be deliberate because it is a reasonably commonly used effect, but the other similar teleport has textures, so I'm guessing it's not deliberate.

The blue sector is also marked as secret and it shouldn't be. The surrounding area (the nukage) is a secret (presumably as intended) but so is the blue sector - creating an extra secret that isn't meant to be there and making getting 100% secrets impossible because the sector is surrounded by teleport lines and cannot be entered.

This secret area is also very hard to find (a two-stage secret, triggered by a wall with no clues on it in a pitch dark sector (and no real audible clues (e.g. a switch sound) to let you know that something has been activated - though you can just hear the remote area opening) which opens a small area behind another unmarked wall in a room that is also a secret and with little reason to be re-visited). I mean, the secret is a bit quirky and probably intended as a super-secret Easter egg as much as anything, but it is very hard to find.

Also, to be honest, other than the glory of getting 100% secrets, there isn't much of value in such a tough to find secret area and what can be found (health) is likely to be chewed away by the toughish fights that happen there.

There is an extra player start spot hidden in the void:

This picture was taken by clipping through the walls where the extra start is. Presumably this extra start spot is not intended.

Because of how the red key is positioned relative to the activation line near it, it's possible to grab the key, but not activate the nearby monster closets. This was, of course, also possible in the original MAP02 so it might be deliberate, but it also makes finding the super secret even harder.

[edit]I just noticed that if you play on easy, there are some skulls on sticks marking a secret that are not there on other difficulty levels. I guess this could be deliberate to make the secret easier to spot on easy, but I thought I'd point it out in case it wasn't intentional.[/edit]

However, those errors are minimal and it's still a really fun little map. :D
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Re: UnderPlants: "Or, E1M(AP)02!"

Postby kinker31 » Wed Aug 12, 2020 1:17 pm

Enjay wrote:I've played though it a few more times, so some comments for things that I feel could be looked at.
The E1M2 central computer area at the start (where you can go up to get to the MAP02-style switches and red key bars) feels a bit cramped. Possibly not much can be done here without quite a bit of re-work to that area.

That room was actually really, really hard to do, and I'm surprised I was even able to pull it off! I do have a bugfix update that'll try to make the room less cramped though (there's only so much I'm able to do in a really limited space without having to make major adjustments that I really don't wanna do), you'll see.

Enjay wrote: Some of the secrets are hard to find because they have very little/nothing to give a clue that the wall might be activatable (or whatever). Some seem to rely on the player knowing that "there should be a secret around here somewhere because there was in the original map" whereas some others are found mostly as a result of wall-humping. To be fair, most do have a clue to their existence.

Yeah, I'll admit that that was kind of my thought process behind the secrets in the map. I did try to give a visual clue or two, but 80% of it actually was just "Hey, this did something in the original map, it should do something here!".

Enjay wrote: This secret teleport has two problems:

The blue water platform has no lower side textures so it looks a bit funky. This could be deliberate because it is a reasonably commonly used effect, but the other similar teleport has textures, so I'm guessing it's not deliberate.

The blue sector is also marked as secret and it shouldn't be. The surrounding area (the nukage) is a secret (presumably as intended) but so is the blue sector - creating an extra secret that isn't meant to be there and making getting 100% secrets impossible because the sector is surrounded by teleport lines and cannot be entered.

This secret area is also very hard to find (a two-stage secret, triggered by a wall with no clues on it in a pitch dark sector (and no real audible clues (e.g. a switch sound) to let you know that something has been activated - though you can just hear the remote area opening) which opens a small area behind another unmarked wall in a room that is also a secret and with little reason to be re-visited). I mean, the secret is a bit quirky and probably intended as a super-secret Easter egg as much as anything, but it is very hard to find.

Also, to be honest, other than the glory of getting 100% secrets, there isn't much of value in such a tough to find secret area and what can be found (health) is likely to be chewed away by the toughish fights that happen there.

The blue sector marked as a secret? That's a bug, I'll put up the bigfixed version soon. The lack of lower side textures on the blue sector? That's deliberate. The way to even get to the homage in the first place being very much cryptic is also very deliberate, after all, most people would have no idea pushing a random, nondescript wall inside something you usually wouldn't even look at would even bring you to a super-ultra hidden level exlusive to the Xbox, let alone anything in the first place. And about the only real reward for my super secret homage is that you're able to get 100% secrets in the map... I've fixed that (or at least tried to fix that), and as I've said before, it'll be up soon, with much better rewards, especially on UltraViolence.

Enjay wrote: [edit]I just noticed that if you play on easy, there are some skulls on sticks marking a secret that are not there on other difficulty levels. I guess this could be deliberate to make the secret easier to spot on easy, but I thought I'd point it out in case it wasn't intentional.[/edit]

Yep, that's deliberate indeed! I mostly got the idea from E1M3's floor lamps that disappear on Ultra-Violence, and the bugfix version I'm soon going to upload will have a much better implementation of the difficulty settings.

Enjay wrote:However, those errors are minimal and it's still a really fun little map. :D

Thanks! Hopefully the patched version I'm about to upload soon will be even better than before!
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Re: UnderPlants: "Or, E1M(AP)02!"

Postby kinker31 » Wed Aug 12, 2020 1:19 pm

Aighty, patch is out!
You can go ahead and replace your current version with the new version, there isn't much reason to keep the old one.
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Re: UnderPlants: "Or, E1M(AP)02!"

Postby Enjay » Wed Aug 12, 2020 1:46 pm

Brilliant! Thanks very much for the update.

A couple of other things that I noticed (both may be intentional):

If you go to the final room via the blue key route without having visited the room with the scrolling face pillar (and cacodemons etc) you are trapped in the final area. i.e. the lift goes up and can't be reactivated from below and the stone walls beyond the exitdoor have not been lowered so you can't go through there either. I don't *think* there is another way out.

The secret beside the red key is a single-use only secret i.e. the switch can only be used once and the teleport inside the secret is also a single use line.
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Re: UnderPlants: "Or, E1M(AP)02!"

Postby kinker31 » Wed Aug 12, 2020 2:13 pm

Yep, both are intentional.

For the blue key route, I figured that if you wanted to go down the lift, you probably wanted to take a shortcut to the end of the level.
As for the red-key secret... Well, I didn't want it to be too easy to get, I figured having the door only be able to open once would add a bit of spice to it.

Thanks for the feedback, by the way! It would've been very hard for me to find all those problems and fix them without it!
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Re: UnderPlants: "Or, E1M(AP)02!"

Postby Enjay » Wed Aug 12, 2020 5:10 pm

Cool, and no problem. The map is fun, so it was no bother for me to play it a few extra times. :)

The only thing about the blue key route idea is that every time I have played, it hasn't been a deliberate shortcut, but merely a mirroring of how I tend to play map02.

Purely as a matter of "why on Earth wouldn't you", I always flick the switch that mirrors the one in E1M2. So, by the time I get to the end of the corridor, the right-hand drop is open. That's the one that I would usually take in map02 and I know that I need to find a blue key to get out, so that's what I did. Of course, I could have teleported back up (though it's not that obvious that is an option - and I didn't even think of back-tracking down that corridor because I could see it was unpopulated when I returned with the blue key). So, I went through the blue door, down the lift and... that was it. I couldn't get back out to clear the left drop.

That's a lot of text simply to say that it's very easy to go down the blue-key route without it being a deliberate decision to try to get to the exit quickly or to avoid clearing the other route.

I mean, it works and if you're happy with it working this way, then that's fine but it does mean that the player can accidentally leave an area of the map uncleared. Making the lift into the final room activatable from the lower side wouldn't affect the map or anyone who wanted the shortcut but it would solve the "problem".
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Re: UnderPlants: "Or, E1M(AP)02!"

Postby Kills_Alone » Wed Aug 12, 2020 5:51 pm

I encountered the same issues as Enjay. Had to edit the secret in the area with the Pain Elemental, I just disabled it on the tele and applied secret to the second room (again with the Mancubus) to reach 100%.

The blue lift wasn't necessary for my route.

The windows that you can run through to get to red key room are a little awkward and tight, which can cause the player to fall pretty easily.

The secret that opens the wall/tele to the Pain and Mancubus is not easy to find, even though I knew it was probably there and with a flashlight I still had to go look in Slade just to be sure.

Overall a fun level with the right amount of gameplay (not too long or short).
And here is some gameplay:
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Re: UnderPlants: "Or, E1M(AP)02!"

Postby kinker31 » Wed Aug 12, 2020 8:44 pm

Kills_Alone wrote:I encountered the same issues as Enjay. Had to edit the secret in the area with the Pain Elemental, I just disabled it on the tele and applied secret to the second room (again with the Mancubus) to reach 100%.

The windows that you can run through to get to red key room are a little awkward and tight, which can cause the player to fall pretty easily.

Funny you should mention that, I actually posted a newer version of this map that fixes the bug where the blue teleporter counted as a secret sector, and as for the tight windows, MAP02 was kinda like that.

Kills_Alone wrote:The secret that opens the wall/tele to the Pain and Mancubus is not easy to find, even though I knew it was probably there and with a flashlight I still had to go look in Slade just to be sure.

The bugfixed version bumped up the brightness of the monster closet a bit, but don't worry too much if you had to look in SLADE, the way to even get to MAP33 in the first place really was just that cryptic.

Kills_Alone wrote:Overall a fun level with the right amount of gameplay (not too long or short).

Glad you enjoyed it, and I'm quite surprised it synergizes well with Brutal Doom, especially considering I tested it with Chocolate Doom, Crispy Doom, and a combination of GZDoom and FinalDoomer+. The OG Brutal Doom wasn't even a thought I had in mind when making the map, and I'm quite glad it works quite well with the popular gameplay mods, if your video's anything to go by!

Edit: I should probably mention that I don't really play the OG Brutal Doom all that much, I usually lean towards Project Brutality when I need to get my gore fix. I'm also not much for the HD texture packs, but to each their own.
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kinker31
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