My 2 Cent Take on Corrupted Temple
Temple - Damson
DooM2 - Solo Play - 108658 bytes
.: OverviewThis is a medium-sized, non-linear, single-map replacement for DooM2 that plays in the Map25 slot. The theme is primarily medieval, with the occasional hellish decorations thrown in. In keeping with its slot later in the game, the opposition is stiff, and will often keep you dancing around as you evade multiple attacks. It is fully vanilla DooM-compatible (tested with Chocolate DooM and GZDooM), and some vanilla DooM tricks have been put to good use.
.: Map Design and AppearanceThe map is very non-linear, which you will discover as you criss-cross it. At the beginning the path for progression is obvious, but you will rapidly find that new paths open up the further you explore, and it may take some time to get your bearings. The sense of confusion is occasionally compounded by switches that don't immediately indicate the action that has occurred. Towards the latter part of the game you will find a series of switches and teleporters whose functions and destinations will take some time to learn. On the positive side, the map will give you a sense of satisfaction from reaching areas that you may not have thought were reachable (or, indeed, required to reach).
Being vanilla DooM-compatible, the appearance of the map is sometimes quite plain. This is particularly true in the larger, open areas. Smaller areas are better detailed, lighting is satisfactory, and the texturing is competent for the most part. There are a few instances of texture misalignment and texture clashing, but these are not glaring and don't adversely affect the enjoyment of the map. Height variations are well-used, and often serve useful game-play functions.
.: GameplayThe fighting begins in earnest almost right from the start. You will be pitted against an assortment of human and non-human enemies, quickly graduating from the low- and mid-level baddies to the real heavies. You pick up adequate ordnance to thin out the ranks of the hell-slime, although you'll be mid-game before you pick up the much-appreciated super shotgun. Thankfully, there is room to maneuver, and retreat if necessary. There are also some opportunities to incite fighting among the monsters. Health and ammo are adequate, but armor is not easy to come by. Different skill levels are not implemented, so this map is not recommended for players new to DooM.
One area that presents a double-edged sword is the switch maze near the start. On the one hand, it is exciting trying to complete the maze before the invulnerability wears off while a cyderdemon and four mancubi are raining turds of destruction upon your head. On the other hand, the first time you enter the maze, you don't know that pressing one switch reveals another, and another, and another. Plus, because its a narrow maze, it's not easy to navigate. These factors make it a potentially frustrating task.
The map has nine secrets; some of them are easy to find, others not so. Likewise, the items found in them vary from the useless to high-value. Be warned, however, that the secret area near the central start area has a door that does not open from the inside, effectively locking you in. It's also possible to get stuck in the area with the red key on the pillar. You can enter the red key area before lowering the pillar via a remote switch, but you need the pillar lowered before you exit that area. There are also a couple of non-intuitive options that can be frustrating. The path to the hidden teleporter that leads to the red key is almost fully blocked by trees, and many players will assume the path leads nowhere. Also, when you teleport to the "cage" near the exit you may not realize that you need to press the cage bars in order to escape the cage.
.: Wrap UpSeasoned players will find some exciting moments in this map, but most players will spend some time scratching their heads as they try to figure out where to go next.