Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Feature: Community Mapsets

There has been quite a few Community mapsets made over the years, and even more attempted, so I thought it might be interesting to have a look back at some of these sets and explore exactly about how these came about, what and who was involved and what the end product ended up being like.

Beyond Mutantstein SE (2002)

This was made as a tribute set to the late John Bucksnort who passed away in 2001 and the various mutant themed mods he made and released over his years in the community. This was developed by MCS, AReyeP, Schabbs and BrotherTank and contained 15 community members contributing maps. This was a 21 level set that was done as a remake of Spear of Destiny.

This is probably the best Community set ever made as the quality of the maps and gameplay are at a very high level. All the levels contain only mutants, including mutant substitutes of all original guards, and can be quite challenging at times.

You can read my full review on this set HERE.

Download available HERE.

Map Making Mania Melee (2004)

This set was a mapping contest first proposed in September 2003 by Zach Higgins with participants asked to submit 3 levels each, being a start, middle and finish to an episode. 6 People contributed maps, along with a single level to make a 19 map set. The contest was judged by Schabbs with no defined winner decided.
A text file containing Schabbs reviews of each level is included in the download along with an additional level from Schabbs. The contest levels were made by Arielus, Ack, Bernt Hansen, Martin, David O'Rafferty and Chris Chokan, plus a spare level (left over from the Beyond Mutantstein SE Tribute set) by Harry Mass Senior.

This is a fairly good original style set that uses a few tricks like hollow walls and the like but works in a different way as each mapper has 3 consecutive levels to tell a story.

Download available HERE.

Gex Spear Levels Pack (2005)

This was originally intended to be a contest but was later changed to a level pack for the full version of Spear of Destiny. The mapset replaces the 21 Spear levels and were made by Gex, Schabbs, De Zourkous, Thomas, Ack & Otto and was released in September 2005.

The levels are of varying quality and this doesn't play as fluently as other mapsets but still has some decent challenges in it.

Download available HERE.

The Wolf 3d Community Mappack (2007)

This set started as a contest idea developed by Thomas but later turned into a 30 level mapset with the idea being 5 people contributing 6 levels per Episode, including 1 Boss and 1 secret level each, with Episode 6 being a combined set of maps from all involved. Things didn't quite turn out this way with 1 person dropping out from making maps and the others pitching in to help cover the missing maps.
The final participants in the mapset were Tricob, Thomas, WLHack and Dean with Schabbs and RonWolf each contributing one map for the Episode 6 mixed set. There were some code changes made to this including ceiling colors but mostly it stays true to the original Wolf 3d set.

The Dos version can be downloaded HERE.
The SDL version (made by Tricob) can be downloaded HERE.
Tricob has also made the SDL source code available, which can be downloaded from HERE.

DHW Map of the Month Contests (2007-2008)

Probably the most famous mapsets made by the community, these were Monthly contests made by members of the DieHard Wolfers Forum and voted on by other Community Members. The original idea was created by the DHW Administrator BrotherTank, who also did the coding, with the numbers of people contributing maps varying with each release. Over the 6 releases 18 people contributed a total of 59 maps. Combined,229 votes were cast.

I won't spoil the winner's here but if you click on each month, it will take you to the thread at DHW where you can read the results.
- June 2007 can be downloaded HERE
- July 2007 can be downloaded HERE
- August 2007 can be downloaded HERE
- September 2007 can be downloaded HERE
- October 2007 can be downloaded HERE
- Nov 2007 - Feb 2008 can be downloaded HERE & HERE (Both parts required)

Team Aardwolf Mapset (2009)

This was developed by members of the Wolf 3d Haven forum and the levels were made over the course of a year or so. The set contains 30 levels with contributors for community members Schabbs, Thomas, RonWolf, Serpens, Lilmanjs, Megabyte, Valts, Fireboy and Nexion. The coding was done by RonWolf and the set includes changed ceiling colors and music order.
This is a fairly decent set with some challenging levels although I've found there is issues with the flow of the set as each level plays more like an individual level rather than part of a set.

There are many downloadable versions of this set at various levels of production but the full and final version can be downloaded HERE.

Haven Mapset (2009)

The 2nd mapset made by members of the Haven forum, this is 20 levels long and and all levels are contained within the first 2 episodes and is based on the original Wolf set.
The levels are of mixed quality in this as some are designed as normal levels while some are quite large with many, many secret areas and large quantities of guards. I would suggest trying the Super Haven mapset before this one as all levels from this are contained in that also.

Download available HERE.

Super Haven Mapset (2010)

This was a full 60 level remake of Wolf 3d and is the third mapset made by community members of the Wolf 3d Haven forum. The set contains the 20 levels contained in the 2009 Haven mapset as well as 40 new levels and has a few code changes from original Wolf, with features such as increased ammo and health and changed episode names amongst them. This was organised by the Haven forum Administrator 'Dark_Wizzie' and contains plenty of his own maps plus those of other community members such as Ack, Jayngo, Schabbs, Valts & Thomas.
This is quite a good set with each level containing numerous guards, ample sprites and many with a large numbers of secret areas.

Download containing both SDL and Dos versions available HERE.

DHW SDL Mapset (2011)

A 60 level mapset made by members of the DHW forum and dedicated to Liza Walley who sadly passed away in late 2010. Each Episode was made by a different mapper except Episode 5 which was shared by Arielus, Dean and Schabbs. The makers of the other episodes were Ack, RonWolf, Thomas, AReyeP and Serpens with the Exe being made by Andy_Nonymous.
This is a very good set with many high quality levels by some of the Community's most famed mappers. The styles vary in each episode but the story told over 10 maps by each mapper is executed with very high quality.

Download containing both SDL and Dos versions available HERE.

Thanks for reading this, I hope you found it interesting! I've been trying to think of other things I can do special reviews on so if you have any good ideas or things you might like me to review then please either leave a comment, email me or PM me at either of the forums. Thanks for reading!

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