overall_rating 4.148936170212766 47

Forum thread for retrojam1

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–Warning: very verbose comment and very slight spoilers to follow–

Of all the map jams so far, this pack is most consistent in quality: while the other three all include maps ranging from beginner-ish through clearly incomplete to really impressive, these maps are all fairly good, without being mind-blowing (keeping in mind what high standards the contributers to this pack have set for themselves). I suspect this has a lot to do with a stricter time limit than in the previous jams (in that respect, this seems to be a lot closer to what speedmapping events have become in later years).

I find it odd that this was organized in a way that completely bypassed Func_Msgboard. I am sure this took many mappers by surprise and effectively excluded many potential contributers (of course it is ultimately the prerogative of mappers to map and cooperate however they see fit, and I suppose the most important thing is that people are creating content, but it does strike me as an unfortunate decision).

The title of the pack suggests that the overarching theme was old-school, id-style gameplay and visuals (again, it would have been nice if there were a set of guidelines on Func_Msgboard). The retro theme does come across in the liberal use of traps in most of the maps (something of which we do not see nearly enough in my opinion), and the size/monster count, which stays more or less within id limits. With the partial exception of Scampie’s map, though, these do not really look that old-school, with their skyboxes, fog, semi-transparent windows, sophisticated brushwork and sock’s custom pickup items. In fact, visually, this looks more like “Quake the way sock did”. I personally do like sock’s custom pickups, but I am not convinced they were the best choice for a “retro” theme (and yes, I know it is easy enough to play the pack without them, but I prefer to play maps as the author(s) intended, and judge them accordingly).

As for the maps themselves:

ericw’s map is not as much fun as his recent Zerstörer-themed map, but still makes for an enjoyable quick round of Quake. Except for one misaligned inner door texture (the kind of thing that is probably easily overlooked in an editor, and so is understandable given the time constraints), this map looks good and plays well. The secret could have been a bit more challenging to find, though, and it is a pity there is only one.

Somewhat surprisingly, given that mfx is widely considered the second coming of czg (or whatever words of admiration you find most appropriate), I found his map to be the least enjoyable, mainly due to its being incredibly stingy with ammo. Even having found all the secrets (which are easy to find, yet still very gratifying), I had to rush past the last Shambler since I had zero ammunition and very little health left, having just axed the penultimate Shambler to death with the help of a Quad Damage. Speaking of which – this is one of those maps that seem to assume everyone can do the Shambler dance. That might be fine on hard skill, but fighting Shambler after Shambler with little to no cover and the aforementioned limited ammunition is a bit rough for skill 1.

Still, this is unsurprisingly lovely to look at, and makes great use of traps. The floating-crates-in-slime-hopping-sequence (which seems to pay homage to the 3d-platformer nature of many of the original id levels) is something I absolutely love in theory, but in practice I found it hugely annoying as I kept derping into the slime. It would have been nice to have an alternative route open up once you have traversed the crates once. As with mfx’s map from the Zerstörer jam, it would be nice to see a revised version of this.

Scampie’s map may be the most modestly sized in the pack, but it also does the best job of evoking the feel of the original game. It is a lovely compact love letter to Quake, and the only truly qtwid (as opposed to qtwsd) entry (if you ignore the custom pickup items).

Skacky’s map is really good, but has some weird bug (at least one my system) which makes it impossible to load saved games.* This means that you have finish it in one sitting, leading (at least in my case) to risk-averse gameplay and really detracting from what otherwise seemed to be a wonderful map – and is perhaps part of the reason why I did not find any of the secrets.

Sock’s map, though not particularly retro, is the best of the bunch, with fun gameplay, good visuals and sock’s signature mix of relatively obvious and not-so-obvious secrets. It may not be in the same league as most of his other releases, but, as is the case with most of the mappers in this pack, he does set a very high standard for himself.

*It gives me this error:
Mod_LoadTexinfo: 8 texture(s) missing from BSP file
Host_Error: ED_ParseEntity: EOF without closing brace

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Are you using the latest version of quakespasm?

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He’ll get the message no matter what, I dun goof’d with the map name.

Unregistered user “mfx” posted:

Breezeep dont mind skacky has it fixed already. The braces in the mapname worldspawn field were causing this.

And here is a fixed version of my map: Now with enough ammo and health…


I am, but I don’t think that really matters anyway: Skacky has since explained that the issue is caused by the use of brackets in the worldspawn message (i.e. the name of the map as displayed when you play it and as used to store and load savegames).

I guess since this pack includes the map sources, one could change the worldspawn message and recompile the map oneself (provided that one has at least a basic understanding of Quake map editing and compiling). Unfortunately I do not currently have any Quake editor or compilers installed, but perhaps Skacky will release an updated version…

Thanks for wanting to help!

Holy simultaneous post, Batman!

Thanks for the updated version, mfx!

Skacky, would you mind linking to the fixed version of your map here? I would love to revisit it at a more relaxed tempo and look for those secrets…

In Sock’s map, I found six of seven secrets (and all kills). The one I missed was the nailgun near the start. Anyone care to give me a hint?

Unregistered user “Oilspiller” posted:


Mike you have to jump to the button from the torch. First you must jump on the torch. Its tricky but rewarding…

Uploaded an (embarrassingly inept) demo of sock’s map that shows you where and how to find all 7 secrets (well, there’s one I do not manage to do the “proper” way, but I do show what you’re supposed to do).

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Thanks, Oilspiller. BTW., two of the secrets I did get, I got by rocket-jumping, which I don’t think can be the right way. I’ll replay this map some time soon, see if I can find the proper solutions before watching Icantthinkofanickname’s video.

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I find it odd that this was organized in a way that completely bypassed Func_Msgboard. I am sure this took many mappers by surprise and effectively excluded many potential contributers (of course it is ultimately the prerogative of mappers to map and cooperate however they see fit, and I suppose the most important thing is that people are creating content, but it does strike me as an unfortunate decision).

I am convinced Quake players love a good conspiracy theory but this is not the case. I spoke to MFX privately about a map idea based on a reference image (yes both our maps have similar architecture) and I thought it would be cool to ask ANYONE on twitter if they wanted to join. Twitter is not exclusive club and anyone can sign up, follow and talk to people. How people communicate and organize things is changing, forums are not the only way to do thing anymore.

I am surprised so many people enjoyed the jumping secrets in my map. The NG/GL secret did make me grin when the floor panel opened and I could drop down. The doors by the YA are broken because they should of opened normally and not be locked to the very end. Also the secrets do not require any GL/RL jumping, just very precise jumping skills.

If anyone is interested I did post a video on my youtube channel showing the first day of construction in the editor. I started with a 2d floor plan for the lower area, but decided it would be better to design the layout in 3d in an editor. The construction was accelerated by the use of a reference image, I highly recommend this for speed mapping.