Author: Peter Williams
Released: May 24th 2012
It’s been an 11 year hiatus since Peter last made a release, but once again jumps into the community to present us with a new map with simple execution. Shoot down the aliens and reach the Nuke button at the top.
Sloth is a simple map with a clear goal. Duke must get from the bottom of the canyon and fight his way to reach the top and give the nuke button a good punch. The entirety of gameplay takes place outdoors and one key aspect about the design is the good looking, natural terrain work, with towering cliffs around the edges to make the player feel small in comparison with the environment. Crates are often used as a form of decoration to fill up the gaps which does become both repetitive and boring to look at. This is where other neat ideas could have fit along side them for variety, such as forklifts, pallets and similar objects. Strong, casting shadows might have also helped to break up any empty spots, but I can look past this weaker part of design because of the solid and enjoyable gameplay.
There is no button or key card hunting present like in most maps, besides from one at the end, where Peter instead focuses on presenting an action packed experience which progressively gets rougher the higher up players reach. This also shows through within the visuals, where the aliens make use of sand bags to fortify upper levels and increasingly so each time. Troopers are a prominent enemy and used effectively across the map to create distractions and to take care of the vertical space, while Pigcops and Lizmen deal damage on foot. Fat Commanders eventually enter the fray, but barely pose much of a threat besides from getting hit by a rocket that you may have not been expecting, but Sentry Drones are a nice touch, especially by that point where fall damage can be pretty painful.
Peter returns to the mapping scene with a simple, yet solid release, with gameplay that progressively gets tougher while remaining a balanced and enjoyable experience. Design is much stronger with the work on terrain, yet weak on the decorative side.