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Published on Jun 9, 2013
Pwad: Torched.wad Author: Joe Lawrence Date: 17th July 1994 Map: e1m1 Category: UV Maxdemo Executable: Doom.exe Time: 1:07 (UV), 0:54 (NM)
Okay, just had a hard disk crash drama the last week, but we're back on schedule now. I find this wad a little curious. It's (nearly) a full episode replacement, and normally these attract at least a little interest. But nobody seems to have remembered this one at all. If you look up the wad description on /idgames, there are no reviews, and only a single one-star rating. That's pretty forgotten. And, hopefully as I'll be able to show in future runs, this isn't entirely deserved.
Not that you can tell from this first level, which is perfunctory in every respect. One nearly featureless huge room, a fairly bland collection of near-empty corridors, a couple of contrived situations involving barrels, and the level's over.
It also doesn't help that the level's significantly buggy - or at least the version on /idgames is. It's not entirely Joe's fault. From the wad description he put this together using DoomEd for Windows version 2.6, which was notorious for writing wads without reject files. I had trouble with an earlier wad, SEWER.WAD, which had this exact same problem and was constructed with the exact same editor. What happens with a missing reject is, the game tries to read values from the memory address where the reject *should* be, leading to buffer overflows and general unpredictably. Which in practice means there are sectors in the level where monsters won't attack you, or barrels won't chain explode, or rocket blasts cause no damage. When I first tried this level, for instance, I found that none of the imps in the large hall would attack me, and the barrels on the left ledge wouldn't kill off the imps for me, so I had to shotgun them all. Joe seems to have been aware of the issue - with each level he notes that "Barrels sometimes don't chain explode." But I'm sure he didn't know why.
Often demos recorded on levels without a reject won't play back later - even using the same computer. So I had to fix the reject before starting this demoset, which I did with RMB. The link below will give you a fixed version. Unfortunately I'd already recorded on four levels before realising it was a reject issue, so that all had to be redone. Wasn't so bad though, and all the times bar one ended up faster. This level in particular is quicker because all the barrels will at least do what they're supposed to. And the beginning where I manage to kill seven imps with six shots wasn't too bad either.
Lastly, have a short nm speed run tacked on at the end. Not too difficult to do here. Later levels it's a different story...