Eternal Doom IV - Team TNT

If you asked me to give you one word to describe the maps in Eternal Doom IV, I would say "epic". If you asked for 8 words, I would say "Whoa, like, these maps are really freakin' huge!" This really should be no surprise to anyone who has followed the Eternal projects. In 2003, the original Eternal Doom was nominated, in 10 years of Doom, as one of the 10 best wads of 1997.  Now, 11 years later, Team TNT continues the Eternal series with another set of sprawling, epic maps.

All of the maps in Eternal Doom IV are impressive, but several stand out above the rest; in particular, Espi's offering is absolutely breathtaking (see image on the right). Every map is filled with dozens of new textures and utilizes all of ZDoom's editing features; slopes are everywhere, scripting is used well, and there are tons of new enemies. Some maps may take over an hour to complete from start to finish, but do not give up; you will be rewarded with strong gameplay and wonderful architecture. Pay particular attention to map 27, Espi's breathtaking castle. No mapper has, to this date, utilized portals in any port to produce such an impressive structure. Sitting atop a giant mountain, the enormous castle has several layers, buttresses, towers, sewers, multiple levels... and all of this with ZDoom's broken, limited portals. This speaks more to Espi's skill as a mapper than the port. If you enjoy massive, time-consuming maps with tons of demon slaughtering, you owe it to yourself to play this wad.

For future reference, I have always tried to avoid nominating "demos" or "X map teasers", since I prefer to wait for the final release so I do not end up, like RTC3057, with the one map demo being one of the "best" in 2003 and episode 1 winning a Cacoward in 2004.  That said, the chances of Eternal Doom IV being completed into a full 32 level megawad seems highly unlikely (my apologies to the developers)... so I felt the project needed to be rewarded for its accomplishments so far. 

-Scuba Steve

Thunderpeak - Vader

Initially part of ZPack, Vader chose to give Thunderpeak a release of its own... and we are all better for it. When ZPack was finished, it was given a very lukewarm reception; it had several good maps, but most were mediocre. Everyone agreed, however, that Thunderpeak (and Blackrock) were single-handedly worth the price of admission. I was left at an impasse—do I nominate ZPack just for Vader's maps, or not nominate the project... which would be a slam to Vader's maps. Fortunately, Thunderpeak became a standalone release.

Vader contributed significantly to KDiZD and his style has continued from maps like Z1M6. This two map set is full of the brilliant architecture, texturing and secrets the author is known for. The first map, a ruined techbase, is absolutely breathtaking with wonderful use of portals and slopes. I found myself just standing in new areas to admire the architecture and marvel at how intricate the map is. Many often bemoan "detail" in current projects and how it detracts from the map, but the "detail" of Thunderpeak is part of what makes it a great project. The second map is an impressive, ruined techbridge, leading base one to base two, and ultimately the boss battle. A much shorter level, it is a great boss battle and includes a brand new enemy, the Terminator. Vader managed to create an enormous bridge that is believable destroyed... something that's actually difficult to do. Thunderpeak is an amazing project, and I'm glad Vader chose to release it as its own proejct.

-Scuba Steve

Back to Basics - Espi

Back to basics is a self descriptive project; Espi decided to create an episode replacement, styled after Episode 2, that runs on vanilla constraints. Knowing how to push the boundaries of the original exe should be common for the author of Suspended in Dusk, one of the most breathtaking vanilla maps.

Espi has suffered some hardships recently, such as needing his arm amputated... but this is not a pity nomination, Back to Basics really is a great episode. It is amazing just how well Espi was able to capture the Episode 2 texturing and design. Using purely stock Doom textures, Espi was able to take the style of his Suspended in Dusk maps and create a gorgeous episode replacement. I am always astounded that, when any other mapper creates orthogonal walls at varying intervals, it feels sloppy; however, Espi is capable of varying wall angles to feel very natural. The opening map may seem a bit bland, but stay with it—the project continues to improve each level.

It really speaks to Espi's mapping skills that, despite advanced ports and limitless architecture, his vanilla projects continue to appear in the Cacowards. Many Doomers have given Espi their condolences regarding his arm, but his attitude seems very positive. Let us hope we see some new Espi maps in the future.

-Scuba Steve

2008 Cacowards

Page 1

  • Deus Vult II
  • Gravity
  • Urban Brawl: Action Doom 2

Page 2

  • Eternal Doom IV
  • Thunderpeak
  • Back to Basics

Page 3

  • BGPA Missions: Liberation
  • Chex Quest 3
  • Escape from Castle Chezcrea
  • Cold as Hell

Other Awards

  • Best Multiplayer
  • Worst Wad
  • Mordeth Award
  • Mockaward
  • Mapper of the Year


Where are they now?

Over the last few years, several prominent Doomers have moved on.  Let us take a look...

  • Cyb - Moved in with a supermodel and works for Telltale games.
  • Doomboy - whereabouts unknown. Presumed dead or just confused.
  • Ubik - Eaten by zombies.
  • Linguica - Enrolled in Law school. Will return in 2030 after several degrees.
  • Mewse - Died of hypothermia; eaten by wolves.
  • Silverwyvern - Took a high paying job with Disney, drawing anthropomorphic animal sex.
  • Fodders - taken to Guantánamo Bay.
  • BBG - Now Naked Snake.  Still here but won't go away.