Crusher Doom Level

After registering DOOM and downloading several of the early WADS, I decided I had to try it out myself. I started out with DEU 5.0 and NO documentation, and managed to create a great level. Crusher was given 4 stars in the DOOM WAD listing and I have received many favorable comments and reviews. This page makes available the text file included with CRUSHER, reviews , screen shots , and the level.

WAD text
Title:         CRUSHER.WAD
               The level is named after the device in the courtyard.
               Figure out how to work it.   If all else fails, read
               the instructions. :) (On the ground)

Author:        Ethan Brodsky

Email Address: ebrodsky@pobox.com

Description:   This is my first level.   It is a combination of all my
               great ideas I wanted to put into a level.  Since this is
               my first level, it has the mandatory room with lots o'
               enemies.   There is a large maze which can be solved using
               the "stay to the left" method.  All secrets are hinted at
               so you won't have to push every bit of wall to get 100%
               secrets.  Difficulty levels are implemented but it is easy
               on skills 1-2 and I wouldn't recommend playing it.  Skill
               4 is tough even for me, but it is the most fun to play.
               Also, take a look at the overpass.

Additional Credits to: Id Software
                       Raphael Quinet (The author of DEU5, 5.1, 5.2)
                       Colin Reed (The author of BSP11x)
                       Matt Fell (The author of the Doom Specs)
                       Hank Leukart (The author of the Doom FAQ)

* Play Information *
Episode and Level #: E1M1 (Would probably be good as a M5 or M6 level,
                     but I made it E1M1 for convience)

Single Player:          Yes
Cooperative 2-4 Player: Yes, but not tested
Deathmatch 2-4 Player:  No
Difficulty Settings:    Yes
New Sounds:             No
New Graphics:           No
Demos Replaced:         1 (Sorry I couldn't do a whole demo, that was
                        about my 20th try, and the imp caught me by
                        suprise, he had never done that to me before)

* Construction *
Base:                     New level from scratch
Build Time:               Too long!
Editor(s) used:           DEU 5.0, DEU 5.1, DEU 5.2, and BSP11x
Known bugs:               None



Review by ffjjd@aurora.alaska.edu

It shakes you, rattles you, rolls you. It taunts you.

It teases you and squeezes you
and in the end it pleases you

It assails you, avails you to do the best you can.
It's worth your time, divine, it's layout is sublime.

It attempts to and tempts you to strain your little brain.

And is it good?

.....Oh God....

It's Crusher Wad.

(sorry but that just issued forth)     :)

 
The Review:
 
Here's yet another excellent level that's worth your download 
time. I don't know if I'm lucky or what but it seems like every wad 
I've bothered to download has been worth the effort and Crusher is 
no exception. This level is well done and well worth your attention. 
There's lot's of cute little clever things here that I don't recall seeing
or experiencing in any of the previous levels I've played and several 
times I went through the "Whoa what did I just do?" or the "I don't 
believe it, it worked" sensation. At one point I was stuck. I looked at 
the automap and found the only place I had much chance of getting 
anywhere and thought "Nah, I've been there ten times already, that 
won't work" Then I went there and tried it and Whammo! It worked 
like a charm. There's something about that which surprises and 
satisfies- trying something which is a long shot but has a glimmer of 
"maybe" and the next thing you know you're headed into new realms 
and unexplored terrain. Cool layout and sneaky little ideas, I like it.
 
The author (Ethan Brodsky) made good use of textures and 
shapes. The architecture has some real intriguing shapes and designs 
in it. There were a couple of times I thought I saw things written on 
the floor or wall like maybe some words and I seem to recall an
arrow on one of the floors. I don't know if these are new graphics or 
what but they added some new dimension. The author also managed 
to work his initials into the automap.
 
I did have a problem with the level. I played it in a lab with other 
people around so I had the sound turned off. Needless to say when
you have the sound turned off in DOOM you can miss what can turn 
out to be very crucial information, such as lifts rising and doors being 
triggered and things of this nature. That's exactly what happened to 
me and as a result it took me considerably longer than it otherwise 
would have to solve the level. 
 
I mean there I was charging around in the maze (and I mean this 
is  a big maze) for the second time thinking "How in the hell do I get 
through this monster?" In the end I had to cheat and that revealed to 
me what I had missed due to the lack of sound. This was the only 
time I cheated and for me it was kind of necessary but for those of 
you with speakers or headphones or any sound at all, this should be 
no problem. 
 
As far as that maze goes, I kind of enjoyed it. I didn't particularly
love some of the mazes in the original Id levels but for some reason
this one didn't bother me as much. (not that any of this is anything 
but fun no matter which way you look at it) Maybe it was the wall 
textures or the fact that the floor height wasn't constantly changing 
but this maze was more to my liking and I soon liquidated it's 
inhabitants.
 
By the time I got to the Grand Finale I was ready and eager. An 
interesting room requiring some interesting tactics. Ethan designed it 
in such a way that you can study your foe (a fearsome one who has 
bludgeoned us all senseless more than once) in an up close and 
personal manner. This is a neat little trick that I personally have 
never seen done before. And then from there it's on to one of the 
most gratifying slayages a battle hardened marine can go through 
this side of this wondrous DOOMiverse that we all find ourselves 
spending so much time in. I got killed on my first try but managed to 
time things properly on my second attempt and emerged victorious 
after being treated to a particularly captivating death sequence. Nice 
room and nice level Ethan. Design another and give us all that much 
more fun times to look forward to.
 
You're probably thinking I'm going to give Crusher a high rating 
and you're right. 
 
I rate it a 91%.   Excellent work.
 
I played this level on Hurt Me Plenty which is the setting I play
all new levels on and I found it to be a little easier than some others 
I've played such as Opost21 and Cross. On UV I'm sure it should keep 
all but the most lethal warriors sufficiently occupied and if not I 
suppose there's always Nightmare. I started at about 6:30 and
finished almost exactly at 8:00 saving every so often. If you've got
your sound on you might do it in half that time and if you're John
Romero it'll take you exactly twelve seconds.

Great level. Great fun. Great game.

Doom On

Clint.


Review by Frank Stajano <fms@cam-orl.co.uk>

I start in an empty marble room, luckily equipped with a shotgun. As soon as I
open the first door I meet my first enemies, in the form of a few imps and
sergeants. A sunken elevator, and another one, and some tricky stairs, and I'm
back to the beginning. The kill count goes up, slowly. I get a yellow key and
I shoot a few imps through the window. Outside I can see a lot of dead bodies
and a sort of small garage. Looks interesting, I wonder how to get there.

A few purposefully counterintuitive anti-clues, such as acid-looking floor
that really isn't, hide the way to the rest of the level. With this sorted
out, and with a few demons out of the way (lucky I just got a chainsaw) I
teleport to a very odd place with lots of vertical square pillars. No time to
admire the landscape, though, as this place is full of unfriendly sergeants!
If you can stay alive here, you can't complain about the lack of shotgun ammo.

Speaking of staying alive: this is not an easy WAD on UV, and it's very long:
unless you are cheating (shame!), I suggest that you save often until you know
the level well, or you'll be frustrated.

These pillars disappear into the ceiling as soon as you shoot them. Maybe this
is the "crusher" referred to in the title? Mmmhhh.. I don't seem to be able to
crush anything under them, mainly because I haven't got a clue about bringing
them back down. Never mind, let's go on. Outside the room with the pillars is
an open courtyard with trenches full of sergeants. Imps, demons and a couple
of cacodemons also have their say. Finally, I manage to clear the area and I
have the opportunity to explore the recessed passages on the sides.

One of the annoying things in this WAD is that in several places you have
monsters that attack you from places that you can't get to. You can kill the
monsters, but you can never reach their room. This does not feel right, at
least to me. Id only does it in very few places, perhaps two or three in the
whole set of 27 episodes, whereas here it happens quite often. I must say it
is especially frustrating when the baddies are sergeants, where I'd be
entitled to steal their shotgun! But then I've got plenty of shells, so I
guess I can't complain.

In a dark hall, just before a closed door, is an invincibility sphere, which I
eat. I then open the door, chainsaw running. Boy, did I need that green thing!
Three or four cacodemons, the usual swarm of annoying lost souls, plenty of
sergeants and even a baron for good measure! Needless to say, the
invincibility runs out well before the monsters and it's time for some shotgun
work, together with some good dodging...

After the ordeal, a chance to get a plasma rifle. Quite hard, both because
it's difficult to get near the pillar, and because once I'm there I still
can't reach the damn weapon. Need to find a way to activate some stairs to
it. In the meantime, I grab a blue armour. Oh, and there's no point in getting
too excited about the plasma rifle anyway, given that my supply of cells is
ridiculously low.

And then it's time for the maze. Undoubtedly the best maze I've ever seen in a
WAD so far, from a technical point of view: it really looks like a textbook
maze, and you do really lose your bearings if you don't look at the map -- the
only chance is to use the dead bodies as reference points... It's a relatively
dark underground web of narrow corridors, with an acid-looking floor and a
hellish pattern on the walls which makes it quite hard to recognise junctions
from any distance: you have to be just there to realise that there is another
corridor on your right. This maze is very well done but I personally don't
like it at all: it's far too big, and thus boring. It does not require great
skill, but it wants concentration, sustained concentration for miles and miles
of corridors. Imps, sergeants and the occasional demon around the corner. I
would have preferred it to be shorter, perhaps a quarter of the size. And you
can't just skip it either: you have to find two special rooms in it, one with
a key which you'll need to get to the level exit, and one with the exit from
the maze (you can't exit from the entrance because it's a pit that you fall
into).

Once I complete the maze I retrace my steps and discover a few thingies that
weren't there last time. Hidden cubicles, more imps, more sergeants. But in
the end I get a berserk pack. Always handy.

Looks like I've done most of it, but I still haven't been able to get to the
outside courtyard. And I still haven't seen the crusher, whatever that is. It
*must* be the "garage" outside, but how to get there? Well, I can only say
that it's very tricky and that you'll have to pay careful attention to the
sound clues next time you start from the beginning...

Once I get there I face a cyberdemon-in-a-box, an unreachable health ball, the
"garage" (yes indeed, it's the crusher, and now back to that last saved
game, thank you) and a button to set the cyberdemon free. Which of course I
press -- although, unlike E2M8, I haven't got a rocket launcher with near
infinite ammo to fire back. Well, the idea is to use this crusher to get rid
of the big badass, but I can tell you that this is not a job that easily works
first time...

I exit the level here, but I haven't got 100% secrets, so I go back in.
Although Ethan's instructions say that everything is hinted at, I really have
a hard time finding the way to the warehouse. Nothing special there, just a
few more imps, a cac and other assorted baddies. Oh, and the rocket launcher.
But never mind, against the cyber it would have been useless anyway, without
the ammo.


All in all, a well designed and enjoyable level. Shame about the maze -- nice
looks, poor playability. The rest is good, above average, and the design is
clean. It's a long level and it's quite hard (episode-3 style stuff) if you
plan on doing it from beginning to end without saving, especially because one
of the tricky bits (i.e. the crusher) is right at the end. I came back to
CRUSHER a couple of times after completing it, which I guess shows that it's
worth a go.

I found a couple of bugs of the "the sky shows through the junction" variety
(I can't remember the exact Tom Neff technical term) but they didn't affect
the gameplay.

Tested on UV, single player, no cheats, and saving a lot. Oh yes, and it's a
complex level that slows down quite a bit on slower machines. Stick to that
VLB-66 if you can :-)

      Frank      (Filologo Disneyano)


Crusher images

Level:
Download CRUSHER.ZIP (83057 bytes)

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Ethan Brodsky <ebrodsky@pobox.com>