Doom 3: X marks the spot, dammit


Turned my written ideas for the last leg of the map into an actual plan, in hopes of FINALLY getting the layout done in the near future. This one is a sucker. Depicted here is only the last leg of the map, which is pretty linear, but that’s ok because the earlier part wraps around itself a couple times.

No super-ambitious curvy outdoor stuff here, I just want to get this done by now.

There used to be a Hell-themed boss-battle part after the teleporter, but that has been shelved for a possible later extension.

Here’s a bigger picture if you want to actually read my scribblings. Half a megabyte.


3 responses to “Doom 3: X marks the spot, dammit

  • RawShark

    Dude, how can you even read your own writing?! Scribbling indeed!

  • Spiney

    What are your thoughts on z-axis in D3 maps?
    Z-axis is something I adore, it makes moving around maps much more thrilling to me. Quake games have a lot of it…
    Thumbstick shooters and semirealist fps seem to not have a lot of it.

  • kneedeepinthedoomed

    I also find verticality in shooters very satisfying. With vanilla Doom 3, the enemy set doesn’t seem to lend itself to vertical gameplay very much, though. There are only two regular flying enemies (lost souls and cacodemons), and the walkmonsters don’t have such a lot of projectile attacks. The best candidates for vertical combat are the Z-secs (machinegun, pistol), the imp (fireball), and the relatively high-tier chaingun commando. Lots and lots of Doom 3 monsters have melee attacks rather than projectiles (wraith, maggot, tentacle commando, chainsaw guy, pinky, spiders and all regular zombies). There isn’t really an equivalent to Quake’s Enforcer in Doom 3, which was an excellent monster to place on high-up catwalks and ledges. Not to mention the Ogre – no Doom 3 monster does that “bombard from high up places” thing. There is no Ogre (or Q2 gunner) in Doom 3. I don’t remember *ever* seeing enemies throw grenades. The closest thing is that fat zombie in Admin that can throw explosive barrels, which was only used once as a kind of gimmick.

    Entity and pathing wise, it seems clear that the entire thing is made for cover-based combat at small height differences. There are even AI nodes to make enemies duck behind crates and such (remember Z-secs doing this?), which makes most sense if there is little height difference.

    The only vertical combat other than cacodemons (who tend to behave much like a walkmonster by following you at a low altitude anyway, and even have a melee attack) I have in my map relies heavily on chaingunners, machinegunners and sometimes summoning Archviles.

    It’s much the same in vanilla Doom 3; but Quake 4 had a lot more verticality, mostly due to the better monster set. The orange commando Strogg in Quake 4 are awesome – they work in teams, can duck behind cover, and have a large array of projectile weapons and even railguns. I’m sure you could do good vertical combat with those. Quake 4 also does have a grenade-lobbing Gunner which makes all the difference. I was under the impression that the enemy set was way bigger in Q4, although that’s probably not even true. It’s just more varied.

    Movement-wise, you can do the same stuff as in Quake and more, but it’s not really any good if there aren’t a couple Ogres around. Doom 3 also has extreme fall damage, so much that even I noticed it. And the player’s movement is very limited. It ain’t a platformer by any stretch.

    So, without modification, Doom 3 only provides bog standard ways to do vertical stuff. You can put a machinegunner on a bridge, or an imp below the player, yeah, but without great effect. It’s a telltale sign that the original game doesn’t do a lot of that (whereas in Quake 4, you’ve got railgun guys stalking you up a multi-level staircase and so forth).

    I have no idea why they didn’t give a BFG or hand grenades to some enemies in Doom 3. In my opinion the enemies are too melee-happy – even the flying ones.

    Prey is a lot better at this. The Hunters are an awesome multi-purpose enemy that’s often sniping you from above or below (with visible laser sights) and even tossing grenades. Unfortunately, combat in Prey is lacking in other areas.

    The way Doom 3 does visibility also encourages linear, dogleg-corridor maps so you can place your visportals effectively. Unfortunately, visportals seem to affect AI, although they shouldn’t. Trying to make a monster walk through a visportaled door when triggered by the player a good distance away was rage-inducing. Short attack paths and spawning in enemies near the player works best.

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