overall_rating 4.0 42

Forum thread for retrojam4

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Sandy’s Hollow (retrojam4_fifth) – Fifth Elephant.

Played on hard, finished with 50/59 kills and 2/3 secrets. Hard means “hard” here, and I had to backtrack at the end to get health and armour for the final battle. Fun, but not particularly beautiful or inventive by modern standards. (And who ever came up with the idea that nail-traps are fun? Seriously.)

I would score this at 3/5 in isolation.

Why the fuck are you complaining about modern standards or nail traps in a RETRO JAM themed after EPISODE 4?

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A fine question (if an unnecessarily aggressively posed one).

It all depends on what we mean by “retro”. I don’t think that the mappers who contributed to this pack interpreted it as “back down to the standards of what ID did in 1996”. I think what they will have been aiming for is to invoke the same feeling in 2015 that the 1996 maps gave us when we first saw them back then. But doing that now means reaching modern standards.

Now I certainly don’t intend any criticism of the awesome work that these guys are doing – especially as regards maps that were thrown together in four days. But I’ve seen better work from Fifth in the past (as my comments and scores on earlier jams and retrojams show), and my comments on this one reflect that.

After all, if we just wanted Q1E4, we could play Q1E4. These mappers are trying to give us something new, something better than that. To some extent, Sandy’s Hollow succeeds – but it’s not its author’s best work. (And yes, for my money, the nail-traps are part of the reason for that.)

As it happens, The Elder God Palace of Despair (retrojam4_pulsar) is a great example of what I love to see in a retrojam level: an invocation of the old Quake that is noticeably superior to it. In mashing up three or four of the more memorable E4 maps, it gives an experience that is both nostalgic and fresh. I really enjoyed this, and would have loved to see it stretched out even more to cover elements from all the E4 maps.

Score: 4/5.

Mike has certainly scored some of my previous maps higher and it’s not an issue that he scored this one low, he’s entitled to his own opinion.

My own views on this map is that I threw it together in 2 days and I had a blast making it. Personally I’m happier with this map than the ones Mike scored higher, sandy’s hollow isn’t a showpiece map like some of my others and I never intended it to be. But it’s one of the most well-rounded gameplay maps I’ve made IMO and I was content with how it looked. :slight_smile:

Carry on!

Unregistered user “imo” posted:

all your maps suck a bit. imo.

I Have No Ammo and I Must Scream (retrojam4_scampie) is an oddity, but an enjoyable one. I admit I ran straight past the spawns into the end-of-level teleporter, I have no appetite for taking those little sods on with only an axe! It’s nice to see something completely different done with Quake, but perhaps the extreme shortness of this level is not entirely a bad thing :slight_smile:

3/5 for novelty.

(BTW., thanks for your gracious comments, Fifth. The documentation says these maps were done in four days – that you got yours out in only two is pretty astonishing!)

Red Hatred (retrojam4_skacky) seems to suffer under the impression that if one shambler is good, then twenty shamblers must be twenty times as good. I god-moded once to get out of the first hall, then found a bunch more shamblers teleporting in once I entered the next bit. sigh. I guess I’ll start again, on Normal this time. I defy anyone, anywhere to complete this on Nightmare without cheating. It simply can’t be done.

It can. Elgu_ did it, and without taking most powerups. Daz even beat it on Skill 2 without dying once.

I am seriously impressed. Are there demos or videos? It’s always good to see people who are the best at what they do in action.

Meanwhile, I did finish Red Hatred on Medium, and in fact I also left behind two quads and at least one megahealth – so perhaps the difficulty problem (if there is one) is that the gap between Medium and Hard is too great?

Anyway, aside from that issue, this is my favourite of the retrojam4 maps so far, with a nice sense of exploration that is often understandably absent in maps that have to be created quickly. I score it 4/5.

Cochlear Avulsion (retrojam4_tens, and how do mappers keep coming up with these names?!) is a neat little self-contained map, although a bit anticlimactic once the gold key has been obtained. I missed five of the 55 kills (on Hard), even though I went back and grenaded the death-knights in the slime-trap room – then again I missed all the secrets, so that might have something to do with it.

Enjoyable but not especially memorable. 3/5.

MikeTaylor: Elgu_'s stream, my map starts at 47:25: http://www.twitch.tv/elgu_/v/23537277
You can watch Daz’s playthrough on his Youtube channel.

Skill 2 is indeed much harder than Skill 1. It has way more Tarbabies and Shamblers and tougher enemies (Knights replaced with Fiends, etc). Players on Skills 2/3 need to look for secrets, play it clever and/or use the available powerups in an efficient way. Going guns blazing will often result in your painful death.

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