First Impressions

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  • HPLovegames

    So, I just completed the first two levels at the “I have pet names for my grenades” difficulty. My thoughts, in no particular order:

    Man, they must use a ton of WD40 to make these giant brick walls slide around with so little sound. Relatively subtle wall opening noises made sense in DOOM, with its futuristic installations theme, but…

    Is this supposed to be a futuristic installation? The stone walls and the anti-gravity platforms don’t really seem to go together.

    Man, they REALLY fell in love with their bouncy platforms. I’m guessing that someone programmed the physics engine for them and would not stop showing it off around the studio.

    I guess this game and Blood love hit-scan enemies as low level critters. Again, I suppose DOOM did as well, but my character felt much beefier in that.

    Loads of enemies in high places without proper mouselook is not good. I frequently found myself running away because I just couldn’t figure out where I was being shot from.

    So, “interesting” would be my judgement so far. I’ll have to dig a little deeper, and maybe read the manual, with a beer in hand on my day off.


    I had only played a few minutes of this game before this month, and watched friends play it a bit, so this is my first *proper* experience of it, and I have to say…
    Meh. (So far)
    The guns are all fun and satisfying, and in some cases creative and ridiculous. I appreciate the slight nuances in enemy behaviour/ai as well. The weird powerups are funny.
    But I’m having a hard time getting excited about the game as a whole, mainly because of the level design.
    It’s just a bunch of bland brown and grey textures plastered on vague, unspecified “Areas” (calling them rooms would be giving them too much credit).
    I’ve only played two levels so far as well, but first impressions are that the levels almost feel procedurally generated, by a very uncreative algorithm. I’m just not getting any sense of overall theme or logic or personality to them, and it doesn’t draw me in.
    That being said, I hope it gets better and it will change my mind. The combat really is satisfying and cathartic.

    [Edit:] I also can’t get the music to work for some reason (playing on a Pentium I with SB Vibra 16 card). It keeps saying it can’t detect the FM chip. What the heck? If anything should work on the card, it’s the OPL chip! (Which works in other programs btw…) Grumble grumble.


    Yeah, I still mostly like the game overall but the thing that’s aged very poorly for me is the level design. It’s very blah and it’s easy to get lost because there’s nothing really distinctive about any of the rooms.

    I’m also not the biggest fan of most of the enemies using guns. One of the things that I like about Doom is that most of the enemies fire projectiles you can dodge. In RotT I’m often just using my machine gun to shoot at guys from across a level and slowly picking them off so I don’t lose health. It really hurts the pacing of the game when I have to do it. The game is at its best when you have special weapons or powerups in smaller rooms.


    Looks like I’ve enjoyed it more than most here. I played through the whole thing over the last week or so and had a really good time with it. I did play this one when it was new so I knew what to expect but hadn’t been back since. Above all, I think I just like the fact that it’s different from pretty much any other FPS I’ve played + I really like the soundtrack. The bouncy pads god/dog mode etc.. are all ridiculous but kept me entertained.

    The first couple of episodes were the best. The fourth episode introduced bullet sponge zombie monks which you are shooting forever before they go down. The level design/weapons didn’t really change much so expect more of the same. They gave it a major workover but the Wolfenstein engine was showing it’s age by the time this came out.

    I recall there are a load of Easter eggs if you change your system clock to various American holidays. Can’t remember what they do now, other than snow and a new tune at Xmas.


    It is almost embarrassing to admit that I have neve played Rise of the Triad to date. I have decided to finally see what it is all about and have gotten through a few levels of the shareware version so far, using the default “hard” (third out of four) difficulty.

    It is quite challenging, as you are frequently attacked by hitscanners which you can hardly see, and then there are these floor traps… Don’t think I would want to try it with no mid-level saves.

    It is quite impressive what they have done to improve and expand the Wolf3D engine.


    Revisiting after decades and I forgot the little innovations: enemies rolling to dodge, playing dead, begging for their lives, breakable glass, independent gib sprites (Doom baked them all into same, single enemy sprite), level structure can move horizontally, homing weapons, 11 person multiplay, etc. And now knowing it was meant to be a Wolfenstein sequel totally explains the odd uniforms that perplexed me as a kid.

    Otherwise, yeah, level design is weak, it’s too easy to kill oneself with rockets (was I *that* close to the corner?), no mouse look and no high resolution apart from janky ports, weak plot, and inconsistent art styles all drag it down.

    Honestly it feels like a rushed game without any strong vision. It’s a sometimes fun romp that can’t really compete in a crowded market. But back in the day there was so little competition, we played what we could and learned to appreciate the good parts.

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