The starting areaThe starting area
Author Curtis M. Turner II
Port Vanilla Doom
Year 1994
Link Doomworld/idgames
This level occupies the map slot E1M1. For other maps which occupy this slot, see Category:E1M1.

FORTRESS.WAD is a single-level PWAD designed by Curtis M. Turner II and originally released April 20, 1994. It distinguished itself at that time by its size, textural consistency, and competent use of linedef tags. The readme file provides no canonical title.

Various incarnations of the map appeared on Maximum Doom as FORTNEW.WAD, FORTRES2.WAD, PRISONA2.WAD, E1M6 of NEWDOOM.WAD, MAP15 of DMATCH12.WAD, MAP06 of EP5A2.WAD, MAP08 of EPI2BES2.WAD, MAP06 of FLESHLZ2.WAD, and MAP08 of WADPAK12.WAD.

This level should not be confused with Rylan Hilman's Fortress of Doom (FORTRESS.WAD).


Letters in italics refer to marked spots on the map. Sector, thing, and linedef numbers in boldface are secrets which count toward the end-of-level tally.


Open the door in front of you. Then, open the wooden door behind it and enter the dining hall. The door will be sealed off behind you. Collect the blue key, and when the door is sealed off, throw the switch to open it again. Head west down the U-shaped hall and north until you reach the door at the end. Open it and then open the door to your left. Inside, throw the switch to create a bridge in the southeast of the level.

Head back to the dining hall entrance, then head through either of the doors beside the door to your start room. Go through the next door to exit the fortress, go southeast and cross the bridge to the island. Enter the building to find the red key. Go back into the fortress, re-enter the U-shaped hall, head west and then north, and enter the passageway marked by red torches. Open the door at the end with the red key and go through the next door to enter the maze.

The fastest route through the maze is the following:

  1. From the entrance, go north and then west (×3);
  2. Go straight north;
  3. Go northeast till you reach the passage in the northeast of the maze;
  4. Inside, follow the western tunnel, ignoring any side paths, until you find a wooden door.

Past the door is a cavern with a river of lava and a stairway to the yellow key. Climb the stairs to get the key, and then reenter the maze. Retrace your steps through the maze until you return to the maze entrance. Head upstairs and through the red door, then return to the U-shaped hall. Go north through the door, and open the door to your right at the end. Open the yellow-bordered door (this is not locked), and push the prohibitive sign to the east to find a secret door. Past this is a switch; flip it to build a staircase in the exit room.

Return to the U-shaped hall, then go south, east, and north until you find a blue-bordered door. Open the door with the blue key, then the next with the red, and one of the last two with the yellow. In the exit room, climb the staircase, open the door at the top, and throw the switch inside.

Other points of interest[edit]


  1. From the south, the door into the dining hall has four secret doors to each side. To the right, you can open a secret door to find a box of bullets. (sector 32)
  2. To the right of secret #1 is a secret door leading to two boxes of shells. (sector 33)
  3. To the left of the dining hall door is a secret door to a chaingun. (sector 35)
  4. Next to secret #3 is a secret door to a shotgun. (sector 34)
  5. In the U-shaped hallway are two hidden doors you can discern because they are colored brown instead of green like the rest of the wall. Each one leads to a room overlooking the dining hall, containing a box of bullets (three on skill 4-5) and an energy cell pack. The first is found in the western side of the hallway, in the middle of the eastern wall. (sector 69)
  6. The other is found in the eastern side of the hall, in the middle of the western wall. (sector 76)
  7. Opposite secret #5, a misaligned section of the western wall can be opened to find a supercharge. (sector 112)
  8. Walking onto the southwestern walkway on the front of the fortress causes a squad of imps to be released upon you. The alcove they emerge from, containing two stimpacks, counts as a secret. (sector 95)
  9. On the southeastern walkway, press use on the west wall directly behind the health bonus in the corner to find a secret room with five rockets, armor, a stimpack and a health bonus. Opening the northernmost wall of this room then leads to an alcove medikit, a rocket launcher, and a plasma gun (multiplayer only). Only this alcove is counted as secret. (sector 92)
  10. After you have acquired the yellow key, head outside and use it to enter the wooden building in the southwest. You will find a cluster of monsters, as well as eight health bonuses. In the northeast corner, open the eastern wall to find a passage with armor, two boxes of rockets, an energy cell pack and a supercharge. At the end of this passage is a skull button. Pressing it opens access in the northwest corner of the exit room to a supercharge, two megaarmors, and a BFG9000. (sector 176) Beware: raising the stairs to the exit door will seal off this secret and render it inaccessible.
  11. In the wide room with the yellow-bordered door, you can open a secret door leading to seven health bonuses (eight on skill 4-5) and a teleporter. (sector 46) However, the destination is a teleporter leading back to it that can be accessed normally by entering the silver passageway from the U-shaped hall.


In cooperative multiplayer, if a player dies inside the dining hall without throwing the switch to unseal the room, the level will become impossible to complete as no one will be able to retrieve the blue key. This bug was fixed in the WADPAK1A.WAD (basis of WADPAK12.WAD) version of the map.

Demo files[edit]

Areas / screenshots[edit]


Routes and tricks[edit]

Current records[edit]

The records for the map at the Doom Speed Demo Archive are:

Run Time Player Date File Notes
UV speed 1:35.31 Bdubzzz 2022-07-10
NM speed
UV max 5:52.26 Eric Baker (The Green Herring) 2013-04-26 1
NM 100S
UV -fast
UV -respawn
UV Tyson
UV pacifist

1. ^  Contains a PNG mapview image of the maze showing the player's route planning for the demo.

The data was last verified in its entirety on July 31, 2022.


Player spawns[edit]

This level contains eight spawn points:

  1. facing north. (thing 3)
  2. facing north. (thing 430)
  3. facing north. (thing 431)
  4. facing north. (thing 432)
  5. facing south. (thing 433)
  6. facing west. (thing 434)
  7. facing west. (thing 446)
  8. facing east. (thing 447)


Map data[edit]

Things 448
Vertices 1167*
Linedefs 1205
Sidedefs 1565
Sectors 202
* The vertex count without the effect of node building is 987.


This level contains the following numbers of things per skill level:

Technical information[edit]

Inspiration and development[edit]


The idgames entry for this map is called DMFORT.ZIP because it was not uploaded until 2005; the archive already contained "The Fortress" (FORTRESS.WAD), a Heretic mod by Joerg Braun. Braun's level was later moved to the Heretic section of the archive.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]