Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Operation Eisenfaust: Origins Level 13 & Level 14

Level 13, Departed, is the first level to contain a theme that is going to be a major element of the upcoming levels: trains. In this level, you only get a hint of them, as they are either behind fences or are used to signal the end of the level. But after this level, they become a major part of the levels. Of the graphical themes I could use in the game, the trains are one of my favorites. They are new, almost never used within Wolf3D mods, and in themselves they are inspiring textures for a mapper to use. Ideas for train areas come by quickly. It's why these next couple of levels are some of my favorites of the whole game.

In that regard, Departed is somewhat of a filler level, a slow build-up towards the proper train levels. What I remember liking about it were the mine field and the forest areas, which makes it feel like you're both exploring the camp and surprising the enemies by going out and coming in the camp from all sides. Apart from that, I can't say much about it nor do I remember much about creating it. In that regard, it is a bit unremarkable, which is why I referred to it as a filler level and a slow burn in the first sentence of this paragraph. Not bad, but not outstanding compared to what is to come.

Level 14, Trains of Death, is a level that has left a bigger impression on me. The trains have a bigger role, sure, but that's not the only reason why it's better than the previous level. There's just more variety in this level: more features are being used (wirecutters, officers taking hostages) and there's just more variety in the level design all around. Bigger open areas combined with smaller, narrow spaces. It's just more interesting to play such a level, in my opinion.

You start behind a fence, though you immediately find the wirecutters, which allow you to go to the first open train area. It's an action-packed sequence, as you're surrounded by enemies from both sides. Some are in the train area with you, others are shooting from behind fences (which you can get to thanks to the wirecutters). After finding the key, you make your way to a locker area that is small and narrow, therefore requiring a different approach from the player in order to clear that area and get to the key.

The screenshot above is from the locker area. The reason why I chose this shot is because this used to be one of my favorite instances in the game. You might wonder why, as it looks relatively unremarkable now. But during the development of this game, during the period when AlumiuN was our coder, we used to have a feature where we could use different shading for indoor and outdoor areas. So when you looked at the area in the screenshot, the indoor areas used a lighter shading while a darker shading was used outside. Unfortunately I don't have any screenshots of it, but combined with the snow gently falling, it was quite the view. It is unfortunate that we had to let that feature go, as it looked amazing. But alas, that's the way things can go during the development of a mod.

You can download Operation: Eisenfaust Origins HERE.

You can watch Balames' playthrough of level 13 below;

And Balames' playthrough of level 14 can be found here;

No comments:

Post a Comment