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The Kiwi's TaleWitchBlasterDerelict Blow Stuff Up

Played Doom the other day

I was hosting a LAN Party the other day and, at about 3am in the morning, we were struggling to come up with a game to play. One of my mates suggested Doom, so I downloaded the shareware edition from the internet and linked it through to jDoom, and a few minutes later three of us were space marines knee deep in the dead on Phobos.

And.. it was awesome. No, it was f*cking awesome. I was astounded that the free shareware version of a game from 1993 could hold our interest longer then modern first person shooters or real time strategy games.

The shareware Doom is filled with traps; nearly every switch, every keycard, every ammo cache has a  squad of demons and gun-toting zombies waiting behind a nearby wall. But it was incredibly satisfying turning the traps, so elaborately set by John Romero and Sandy Petersen, into ambushes for the monsters as we slaughted them from every direction.

We'd have one point-man sent to spring the trap, one person sent in as a sidekick to cover his back, and the third person would act as sniper, providing fire support from the entrance or a near by ramp. There were other times when a particular room was equally approachable from two entrances, so we split up to overwhelm the enemy from both directions.

Also, when approaching a door when suspected had enemies behind it, we'd all line up together so the poor bugger on the other side would be hit by three shotgun blasts simutaneously. We also carefully rationed ammo and health packs between us when one of us was running low. Sure, it made the game really easy, but it felt really good.

I want to emulate the experience I had that night in my own games, so it got me thinking about Project Firestart and Derelict. Asides from adding online multiplayer (which will be an absolute top priority for any future versions of either of them) it got me thinking about how I could change the fundamental gameplay of Derelict to make it more varied, interesting and satisfying - instead of focusing on perpetual defence while you moved your team from A to B (even the boss fights were tactically defensive) making it so that a fair bit of the game was offensive - working out ways to launch coordinated attacks on certain enemy infested areas - would make the game far more enjoyable.