Fact Sheet

Authors Bjorn Hermans
IWAD Doom 2
Engine standard Doom engine
Date 1995/11
Levels 1

Review by Colin Phipps

ARACHNA2 is an updated version of ARACHNA, which has been converted to a Doom 2 level and enhanced. It's an Inferno style level for Doom 2, set in a grand old church which has been overrun by monsters. The level has a strong theme; new music is included, and new textures are used to enhance the atmosphere of the main area.

screenshot The level retains the impressive architecture of the original: clearly some time has been spent enhancing the visual impact of the level. There is good detail in most areas, though there are occasional graphic glitches.

The level is well designed so that the architecture of the level makes the fights more interesting. E.g in the spiderdemon fight pictured above, there is no solid cover to use, only the circular wall which doesn't fully shield you from his view. (But arachnophobics can avoid a direct fight and find an invulnerability instead). There are several places in the level where you are forced to fight from poor positions.

Alas the gameplay is not improved from the original. There are a few Doom 2 monsters around, and a super-shotgun thrown in, but the level is not significantly harder, nor are there many surprises for people who've played the original. The only thing I noticed was that the easy secret which lets you kill the cyberdemon in ARACHNA is replaced by a harder, once-only secret; so if you miss the first chance you have to reload or fight him directly, and many players will miss it altogether. There are still too many cells and weapons.

There's no doubt that this is a good level, just as ARACHNA was. However I was disappointed that so little thought was put into the conversion.


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