This is definitely not your average upload. Sublevel 27 by fKd is a dark but clean looking sci-fi map with an astonishing amount of eye candy. Large metal tubes, teched out TV fixtures, and tall, abstract towers with aqua-glass ceilings and some crazy propellers attached give you the sense of a brilliant architect gone mad. Constantly droning fans and unique shaders serve for dramatic effects. There is even a cool particle shader which is something rarely seen from the Q3 engine. It is truly in a world of its own. You have got to give the author credit for sticking to his vision.
The level of detail in this map can actually be overwhelming. There is intricate geometry and creativity everywhere you look. Lights actually have wires leading to their power sources and breath taking glass formations decorate the walls and ceilings. It is really something to marvel; but believe it or not, there were times when I was playing that I felt the urge to completely strip the map of its complexity. I often felt cluttered and congested. I was having some serious problems just getting down to the core gameplay.
The author also suffers from a severe case of shader gluttony. As far as performance is concerned, the older computers will probably end up on the sidelines. Things can really start to chug in the larger sections.
This map is huge and, as a result, gameplay is largely disconnected. Basically there are two significant areas - the upper half, or main room, and the lower half. Bots tend to clump up in the middle of the main room which is usually good, but in such a large map, you may spend most of your time just getting there. I would have liked to have seen a few more direct lines from the bottom to the top half of the map.
Weapon and ammo placement is fine. Maps of this size often have a few too many items. This is the case here, but to a much lesser degree. The author recommends a maximum of sixteen players and with a game this large things will spread out just fine.
This release faces an interesting dilemma. There is so much detail crammed into even the most insignificant places that it all seems to fade out, especially at strafe jumping speeds. I really enjoyed this map, but only because I took it for what it is. It simply cannot be enjoyed at the pace of a 16 player Q3A game - I actually had the most fun just walking around in it. I recommend this level for mappers who are looking to pick up some new tricks from a truly talented author, or anyone else who simply enjoys style and creativity.
Original, but not for everyone.
-Reviewed by Pat Howard
q3dmp4, or "Sublevel27" as it is called in its .arena file, is the second Q3 map by fKd.
This map is a fairly large FFA map that boasts some amazing detail that I have rarely seen in a Quake 3 map. In the readme file included, the author states that it originally started out as a Gothic themed map before he found Evilair's textures and switched them over. The tech theme of the map give great atmosphere and really make you feel like your playing in an off world complex. The indoors parts are an extensive series of rooms with small corridors connecting them.
Overall this is a stunning map and deserves a special place on my hard drive, although those running Q3 on lower end machines may experience fps drops in some areas.
Reviewed by Felix