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DM-Arialse 
Map Info


 
File Namedm-arialse.zip
AuthorMame
GametypeUT Deathmatch
Date Added05-25-2001
File Version1.00
File Size328 kb
Player Count2-4
Map DescriptionNone
Review Rating6
User Rating7.5
Overall Rating7.0

 
Review


ReviewerArcadiaVincennesAwe Score: 1.5/3
Date05-13-2005Build Score: 2.0/3
Review SchemaCast Score: 2.5/3
User Point: +1
Overall Score: 7.0/10

DM-Arial-SE (UT99)

A dark little DM map that could be a 1 on 1 or a 2 - 4 player as advertised. Using the infamous ShaneChurch theme, itís pleasing in terms of gameplay, and the visuals are solid, yet flawed.

AWE: 1.5

The texturing is nicely done but a bit monochromatic. Itís fairly well aligned and mostly trimmed. Itís color composition is brown walls, brown floors, brown ceiling, red carpets, green/blue water, and white windows including the desultory UTWomen. Yes the castle theme tends toward an all-brown/stone motif. However, variety is something of a necessity in level design and breaking up the walls with windows is good, but changing the color/texture of the floor and ceiling would be better. In terms of visual aspects variety within a theme balanced against discontinuity is always a challenge and texturing everything the same is a method to cheat at continuity and completely skirts the variety issue. Yes, the floor here is broken up by the red carpets, and they do look good and help but more effort should be taken to add more variety to the homogenous colorscheme.
The lighting, where present, is very nice. Good radii, good brightness, but there really should have been more of them. A lot of this map is quite dark - sometimes too dark. Although the author indicates rather rudely IMO that people may need to increase their monitor brightness, this reviewer has his monitor brightness higher than default, UTís brightness was set above default because of the last map I reviewed, and the map was still too dark. So dark in some spaces that I found playable areas that I thought were walls. As for what lighting there is, itís nice and accents the theme with pools of light. My only other complaint is that some of the lights light up the area in front, above, and below the fixture, but do not really illuminate the fixture nor the wall to which it is attached. Of course the fixture does not face the wall to which it is attached, but light reflected back from the surrounding surfaces should affect that wall.
The architecture is somewhat simplistic. In general this does aid the theme a bit but more architectural detail is decidedly needed to really round out the theme and bring it home. There are some nice vertical touches but in general itís mostly just missed potential.
In sum, the map looks fine, but nothing special. It uses the theme enough to make it look good, but not enough to make it stand out amongst others that use the same theme. The textures lack variety and the map is way too dark in general despite the nice lighting that is present.

BUILD: 2.0

The BSP work is competently constructed. There are no visible HOMs and it all fits together well. The lifts work well and do have a nice sound attached to them. Perhaps it was just me but the lift sound was just slightly out of sync with the lift movement. The water had a decent sound attached to it as well. On the downside, other ambient sound was completely lacking in this map. No general ambient sounds, no triggered ambient sounds, no locational sounds other than the water. This is a shame because sound can really help set a theme like this apart from others.
Well built in general but sorely lacking in sound detail.

CAST: 2.5

The gameplay here mostly makes up for the deficiencies elsewhere in the map. Again, nothing that stands out - itís pretty standard DM fare, but it does it well. Mixed z-axis flows through the map in a fairly pleasant way. The layout in general is fairly easy to pick up and the weapon layout is decent. I donít really like the position of the shield belt. Although there is only one path to it, itís easy to pick up and I would have appreciated a little more risk to getting it. Still, the bots picked it up more often than I did so it has that going for it.
Unfortunately the mapís darkness hinders the gameplay. For example thereís an area under an overpass that is enveloped in darkness to the extent that I didnít know it was an overpass - I thought the edge went straight down and met the floor. I was surprised to find that not only was is an overpass but there was a support for it completely hidden in the inky blackness that a player could fully hide behind. Bad level design. Despite the authorís insistence that players turn up their brightness, it is my opinion that a map should be completely playable with no adjustments as soon as itís dropped in the maps folder. People on dim monitors with default game brightness are decidedly at a disadvantage in general, but a map designer should not FORCE them to adjust their settings in order to play their map.
Despite the darkness the map plays well and is fairly fun. The bots work well and will give you a challenge - just watch out for the darkness.

Overall this map named after a font is a good one. The theme isnít pulled off as well as it could have been with its homogenous texturing, dark lighting, simple architecture, and lack of aural atmosphere. However the gameplay is solid enough to take a dip in it. If youíre afraid of the dark, skip it. But if youíre willing to adjust your brightness and you love UT99 DM, then consider grabbing it.



 
Map Comments


Mxtrmntr
12-16-2002 02:26 PM EST
Rating: 7 
the best shanechurch DM, i believe :)

Charon
05-17-2005 06:13 PM EDT
Rating: 7.5 
almost classic:)



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