Well, 1984 isn't only the year of one of the most prominent releases in the 80's (Tetris and Boulder Dash to name two of them), it's also the birth year of ... well ... me! Growing up in these days, when it comes to games I was used to big pixels, low resolutions and my beloved pc-speaker sounds and music. Still, after 33 years I am a big fan of these classic retro looking games and so I brought back to my childhood memories when I played Doom the way it would have been in the 80s. How? Thanks to various modders, it is possible, a mix of charming pixels and new-gen graphics. Combining LowRes Doom, ChibiDoom and 8-Bit Music makes it possible. You can grab all of them (linked) in the development thread of Ezepov's LowRes Doom. Currently the first episode is playable, and I really hope he is already preparing the rest of it. Thanks a lot for this - and someone please take care of the pc-speaker sounds...
Ten years ago, the Ultimate Torment & Torture was uploaded to /idgames. A lot of things have been said about it. Some good. Some bad! But for TerminusEst13, alongside Scythe 2, Dissolution, Psychic, Equinox, Agent Diaz, and other things, Ultimate Torment n' Torture is one of the old projects that got me into the Doom community and inspired me to start modding it.Ten years later, and gameplay mods have become a huge thing--possibly one of the biggest selling points for using GZDoom over other engines. Gameplay mods have exploded both in popularity and ease of use to make. They may not be the "proper" way to play the game, but it's fun to go through mapsets we love and experience them in a brand-new way.
Over at Doomworld I just spotted that Dragonfly is preparing the release of his official expension pack for Skulldash, the Fast-Paced Speedrun Arcade Mod released in 2015. It is receiving a major re-release, which he has been referring to as the Expanded Edition! So what can be expected? This release will land on the two year anniversary of the original release, October 22nd 2017. The expansion pack features 15+ new levels by Dragonfly, Remmirath, Bauul, Tormentor667 (yes, that's me), Jimmy, Dreadopp, Xyzzy01, AtroNx and kyle2959 as well as upates to all previously existing levels, ported from Zandronum to GZDoom, a scoring system and finally a highscore-logging. For a video, just read on or check the announcement thread.
Thanks to Cage's Twitter channel, I spotted some news about Mechadon's mapping project Supplice. There is some progress actually, and with progress I mean sprites and mapping screenshots that make your heart go crazy. What you can see here is high-end art, no matter if you take a look at the custom pixelated sprite work or the complex mapping. This is one of the projects people should definitely keep having on their screen, as - at least for myself - I can't wait to see all this in action. The project has been started in 2012 which is already 5 years now, no idea how long it will still take but I wish the moddrs best of luck to stay focused.
The mapper nightfall has posted screenshots and information about his latest projectg Volatile which is currently in progress. Volatile is a 15-20 map pack for ZDoom with maps that have very non-linear layouts and focuses on adventure rather than spamming thousands of revenants at you, though it will also fall sideways to dropkick beneath your belt when you least expect it to. There'll be quite heavy use of ZDoom features, including custom monsters and probably weapons (when he gets around to doing that) though nightfall hopes to put in some compatibility mechanism so that you can still play it with mods. The project has basically existed for eternities (since 2011) according to the mapper under an infinite number of names. Let's hope he gets it finished this time as it looks very promising.
When high-end projects and commercial games like Doom 4 get released, some people still stick to the beauty of pixelated charming projects. One those is definitely the modder waru who is currently working on a Wolf3D-style project for GZDoom with the title Mighty Knight. The screenshots promise what you might expect: Pixels, 90-degree angled walls and the retro look of very early first person shooters. At the development thread at ZDoom you can already take a look at the project. It isn't done yet but you get an idea what can be expected - like 15 levels (3 secret) in total, 7 different enemies (guards, troopers, thunderKnight and more) as well as 5 different weapons to choose from. Want to see more? Read on for a youtube video with early gameplay footage.
Batandy, the master of SNESNES-game conversions strikes again. A few days ago, he opened a development thread for his latest creation entitled Castlevania - Simon's Destiny. From what I can already tell, it's one of the most ambitious console reinventions that I have ever seen since Final Fantasy Doom or Golden Souls. Batandy says, it is a non-profit GZDOOM based fan game born as a love letter to this legendary franchise. This mod aims to reinvent the very first NES title of the franchise with a nostalgic yet brand new first person gameplay. All the classic subweapons and items are in, same thing for the monsters. You want to see more? Check the official development thread or read on for a live demo video.
Just noticed that the official PC GAMER posted an article about our project Blade of Agony and I have to say that it's a very decent review with very good and positive feedback. We are very proud to gain such an attention outside the doom community and hopefully this also brings some more attention to other mods, maps and engines from younger players or people who haven't been in touch with the latest development improvements of the Doom engine itself.
"It’s an amazing showcase of the malleability of GZDoom, and a fascinating clash of shooter styles into an ambitious campaign that somehow still feels cohesive. It’s not yet finished but these first two episodes are a great start, and well worth your time."
Wolfenstein3D projects seem to be fashionable again, especially when they are based on advanced Doom engines. jazzmaster9 has released the first beta version of his mod Shadows of Destiny which takes part in the Wolfenstein-universe but is using the full advantage of the ZDoom port. Still, it's in the total spirit of the original Wolf-game - a homage to his favorite mods, specifically Spear: End of Destiny, and all the WolfenDoom TC throughout the years. You're interested? Then take a look at the development thread, it's worth a try!
Just spotted something over at ZDoom that gave me an instant boner: A new Star Wars mod in the spirit of Dark Forces and Rex Claussen's Darkest Hour, filled with modern engine features powered by GZDoom. Currently only 3 maps, a few weapons and enemies are planned but who knows what might happen in the future, as the video and screenshots are pure quality and gives you that special force-feeling you are all looking for. So what does the author say?
The Realm667 overhaul is still running. After improving the Reviews area and adding the opportunity to submit community news on your own, I took the time to update and rebuild the layout of the projects page. To take a look at your own, simply check the menu item in the left sidebar... and while you are at it, feel free to play one or two of the old classics from the Realm667, for example the ZDoom Community Map Project Take 1 ... awwww ... so many memories.
After a long, long time of absence - well, it was mostly pretty much inaccessable due to some issues with the system - the review area is back online. You can access it through the main menu on the right. It looks much cleaner now and it invites for a good read if you ask me. If you are interested in contributing (that's what we hope for) simply post your review in the appropriate "Review" forum at our messageboard, add some screenshots and we are eager to add your thoughts about a certain map. Make sure to read the new review rules by the way.
Starting July 1st at 12AM EST, The Joy of Mapping is returning again to help mappers young and old to get the spark of creativity that they need to make and finish a map all of their own. This time round, you could be joining a crack team of mappers (new and adept alike) to create a whole episodic megawad of material together. And it'll only take a week to map it all. Check out the threads on ZDoom and Doomworld for more information. A countdown timer til the event starts can be found here. See you there!
Some of you might have already noticed that the general appearance of the Realm667 landing page has changed a bit again, especially when it comes to the way the news items are placed. After some time of development I felt it was about time to give the thing a more modern look, that's why I chose the animated tiles. Old news items still work and the new ones are displayed in a more fashionable way, but that's not all that has been changed - especially when it comes to the users.
Brilliant news to all those furry-haters: The official sequel to Shadow of the Wool-Ball has finally been released: Rise of the Wool-Ball starts where the first game has left off, just with much more fun one could ever expect: "Time has passed since the events of the first game. Peace has returned to Scott and Rebecca`s home planet. Just as spring has started to bloom there, both of them awake from their hibernation slumber and start doing what they do after every winter - running happily to the nearby woods, enjoying the beautiful nature and joining some sick moshpits at their favorite metal festival after that.
Blade of Agony Chapter 2 has been released abotu one week ago and the feedback has been very amazing so far. Still we noticed that some people have a problem with the difficulty curve of the maps, that's why I am writing this news issue. So what can be done? The first option you have is to play on a weaker difficulty setting (for example "Morgenspaziergang") if the one you have chosen is too hard. Also think of Blade of Agony as a less arcade-style shooter than Doom itself. There is still a lot of action going on but you are not a super-powerful space marine, so enemies are supposed to be more of a danger than Imps or Zombiemen are. If you are still in trouble we'd suggest watching pagb666's brillaint Let's Play videos showcasing all secrets and an excellent walkthrough through all episodes - Chapter 1 | Chapter 2. If you are still running into problems, please let us know!
Don't worry, I am not going crazy, it's just how I am feeling at the moment for a certain reason. For over 2 decades now I am working on Doom mods, which is a pretty long time. A few weeks ago I already had the chance to talk to John Romero, which was absolutely amazing - talking to one of your idols in person, a vip of the gaming scene.
Yesterday we released the second chapter of our mod "Blade of Agony" on which I am working as project lead as well as most of the mapping and other tasks regarding graphics, development and direction. Today I spotted a facebook/twitter post from John Romero about our project. What he had to say? Simply check the screenshot to the right. I think only few people can imagine how I am feeling at the moment - it's like an accolade to me. The founder of id software, the main mapper of the egoshooter that changed the whole gaming scene, has such kind words for our work, it simply feels amazing! Now I can die in peace!
I somehow can't believe how far we've been come and how long this page already exists. Furthermore this is also a reminder of how old I am already (being 32 years old) and mapping now for almost 20 years... what a terrible beautiful waste of time. It was over 20 years ago when I first got my hands on a Doom addon disc called "Boom - Neue Waffen & Monster" (new weapons and monsters) in a german electronics shop. I can still remember that the disc obviously had some problems as my Quad-Speed CD-ROM had troubles reading it, but still I was able to play old '94 maps of all kind, some of them with even new graphics and monsters - sprite replacements obviously. That was the moment that made me start it all, playoung around with DETH and Wadauthor for the first time, taking ages to build the first room, understanding on my own what "upper, lower textures" are, what a sector is, how to draw rooms and all that crazy things. It was "learning by doing", there hasn't been any documentations and the Internet was something only wealthy people could afford - 56K modems to be precise.
Fortunately times have changed and so has the quality of the releases in the past years. Sourceports are able to do things that haven't been even imaginable in the late 90's, people come up with crazy hacks and ideas that push the id engine to the limits and still amaze me - as a player and a mapper in both ways.
I have to say that the Realm667 wouldn't be possible without the persons visiting it, the persons maintaining it and the persons supporting it through donations. But that's not all: I also want to thank my family that they always accepted me spending so much time in front of the computer - I would never have been able to build all this shit and later work as a graphics designer and photograph in a media agency ;) Anyway, enough blabla, Happy Birthday and back to Blade of Agony - Cheers!
We have been waiting for this day since November 12th last years so the least thing I can tell is, that we are as disappointed as you might be now that we have to say: There will be no release of Blade of Agony's Chapter 2 this saturday. After discussing this internally for more than a week, we had to decide that we want Shadows of the Reich and the original chapter The Staff of Kings to be the best possible experience for players. But currently we are struggeling with issues our beta testers reported as well as problems with the performance on large maps and special effects with weaker or older computers.
Sure, we could have said "If it runs too slow, deactivate the effects or buy a new machine" but this is not our philosophy. We want to reach as many persons as possible, who are interested in this project and try to give everyone the same experience when playing (without reducing settings just to make it run with a few fps faster). We really hope you understand this and we already want to thank you for your patience during this delay, as we promise to prepare the best sequel that can possibly be made. Stay tuned - stay psyched!