Darkness Awaits by Paul "Twisted" Derbyshire is released under the ..::LvL Open Game Source License (OGSL) and was entered into the Levelsource gameplay competition held in December 2004. An arena file and bot support is included in the pack. The arena itself has a geocomp feel utilising light grey with dark grey trim and white lights with blue trim. Directional arrows are featured on the walls and break the monotony. The texture set is courtesy of Evil Lair.
Effective simplicity is the order of the day in this 2-3 player tourney map. The author has treated the player with a central area that exhibits some flair. One can easily circle strafe their way from the bottom to the top of the map in a fluid spiral of surfaces, accelerator pads and stairs. There are sufficient bounce pads and drops to counter this circular motion with some speedy vertical play and auxiliary corridors and rooms for a speedy exit or a game of cat and mouse.
Many items are set in alcoves meaning you will have to break a run and put yourself in a vulnerable position to pick them up. You can circle jump easily enough from the RL to the RA if you need to. You will find these items at the top of the map. The LG and GL are located midway down with SG and PG located at the bottom. The YA and Quad also spawn down here. In the tourney version of this map the Quad is replaced by MH and RA with YA. Item placement is well done and this level is suited to competitive play.
I did hit my head a couple of times, stopping short my run, but this did not sour the experience of play. I also would have like to have seen one of the clips for the PG replaced with 1 for the LG only because the spiralling nature of the central arena lends itself so nicely to the sustained firepower that only a Lightning Gun can offer. There were no dead ends (dead ends are something you do not want to come across in a tourney).
Bots play the level well but do not seem to stay on the top level any longer than necessary (ie to collect the RL & RA and finish you off if there is the opportunity). This is a good thing.
If my only quibble is an extra clip for the Lightning Gun, well this can only mean that this is a pretty damn fine tourney then!
Reviewed by Mark.
Tigs notes: The ..::LvL Open Game Source License is no longer required as the Creative Commons License is a better choice, with better support and is easier to understand. Mappers (or anyone with created content) wishing to release source files should consider the Creative Commons License options.