Talk:Tips for creating good WADs


Am I the only one who thinks this article is just awful? First of all, it's all opinions, no verifiable facts. Perhaps not everybody is annoyed by overdetailing. Second of all, All the! Last few! Scentences! All end with! Exclamation marks! Most of them aren't complete scentences anyway. At the bottom, you can see the author's name, which I don't think is very encyclopedic. The claim that over half of all Doom players play Deathmatch simply cannot be verified. I applaud the author's efforts but this is a wiki, not an advice page. -Wagi 19:23, 13 February 2008 (UTC)

This is indeed a wiki, which means that at any given time, a lot of articles are awful.   :>    For what it's worth, I see at least two items in this list that you could have just fixed yourself without discussion.
Most of the editing tutorials are nearly as bad, and have been for at least as long as I've been here.  The reason is that this is a volunteer project, so people write what they feel like writing, and hitherto no one has found the time to create reasonably complete editing tutorials.  I personally believe that DM tutorials and editing tutorials should have been added before any other articles, as those are seemingly the two most widespread activities in the Doom community, but I cannot do so myself, whereas I don't know anything about them (I can debug vanilla PWADs, but designing them is quite another matter).  Therefore, I have to sigh and do something else, and hope that our number of expert mappers and DM players will keep growing (and hope also that my constant hectoring of User:CarlosHoyos, who has actually contributed to published editing guides, didn't drive him away from the project).    Ryan W 20:29, 13 February 2008 (UTC)


For things like this (subject), I think the wiki should try present the essentials impartially and then refer as fully as possible to the sources that generate the general idea, so that people can go in depth and find their preferred styles and suggestions. In the long run the existing article could be replaced by an article dealing with existing tips and how to articles, as opposed to being some sort of original work.

Any positions presented can be backed by posts, articles, and criticisms that have dealt with how to make good wads. Since this isn't the more general Wikipedia and community work weighs more here, we could use forum posts by established mappers or wad critics and stuff they've said on wad text files, web sites, and so on. We could even try to determine different points of view and places where they are defined or where people have argued different perspectives. For example, how things like "aesthetics" and "game-play" are judged and treated by different groups, fans, and wad authors.

In short, I think this is a subject that has a lot of potential, and instead of trying to push agendas and being pedagogic, the wiki is best suited for opening a window to the matter instead of giving practical answers for something defined so subjectively. Who is like God? 10:09, 16 March 2008 (UTC)

I like your ideas, and this type of approach would definitely improve the article a lot. Unfortunately I'm not motivated or knowledgeable enough to write such an in-depth article/articles myself. -- Janizdreg 12:21, 16 March 2008 (UTC)

Romero's Tips[edit]

In John Romero's entry on this wiki, there's a list of rules he came up with. Should they be added to this page as well? -Abyssalstudios 13:01, 21 October 2008

NOTE: I added it anyway. Abyssalstudios 15:34, 27 October 2008 (UTC)


I feel like aggregating what notable figures said about Doom mapping is a great idea -- e.g. Romero's tips here. There is a lot of material for that in 2020, with Doomworld's tutorial section and others.

While it's good that the page makes it clear it isn't neutral, I think that even the disclaimer is misleading: "The following tips are based on the level design principles of widely popular and well-received Doom levels." I don't think that's the case at all for some of this advice. I'll just give a few examples:

- Items (especially the best powerups) should be used sparingly, except for ammo.

Hard to follow because it's very tough to tell what "sparingly" means in this context. Also bonuses are items.

- Provide the player access to the corpses of killed zombiemen, shotgun guys, chaingunners and Wolfenstein SSs, so that the player can collect the ammo and weapons they dropped.

Excludes snipers, and monster corpses withheld deliberately so that the player doesn't get an unwanted glut of ammo.

- Use connecting textures to help transition between the differently textured areas of the map. These textures help give the room a clean look to it. Appropriate textures include SUPPORT2 and SUPPORT3.

Depends. While some maps do this, a predominant style these days is for maps to shape their contours in ways that textures can be changed without inserting a transition texture.

This page came up in the Joy of Mapping Discord and was viewed, by me and others, to be of questionable quality.

--Rdwpa (talk) 09:33, 20 March 2020 (CDT)

For whatever reason, it hasn't received much attention.  Here is the sum of changes since October 2008.
If it were me, I would turn to the "Roots" feature, which helpfully analyzes many well-received levels.  I would attempt to separate characteristics spanning all eras, vs those from one subgenre which nevertheless have proven timeless to players inhabiting that subgenre.  That's only a starting point because Not Jabba is writing slightly more holistically than "place texture A near texture B"; each subtopic would have to be drilled down by surveying community opinion (see Alternatives above).  My experience, which might be atypical of course, is that whenever someone posts a principle of good mapping, three others respond with "depends" and "excludes".  Ideally this article would incorporate that balance — not waffling by saying either way is fine, but describing a specific effect achievable by making the exception, with examples from published WADs.  My experience is also that struggling mappers ask for help in a particular area rather than an omnibus.  Thus we could eventually spin off components into separate articles with brief summaries here: large-scale architecture, textures and detailing, monsters and combat, puzzle construction, resource replacement, gameplay modding, scripting...
I don't intend to try this because it would take years and there are already experts who could do it 667 times better.  Maybe to an experienced reviewer, the preceding paragraph is completely backwards somehow!  But experts, like anyone else, have other projects and commitments and it's always their own decision how much time to spend on the wiki.  Hope that all makes some sense.  Ryan W (living fossil) 21:48, 2 April 2020 (CDT)