Quake II has always been, and still is, one of my favorite games. To this day, I still enjoy playing through the original campaign and making my own maps for the game. Quake II has a very specific style and setting which might be restraining to some level designers as it’s not easy to successfully deploy the Strogg army to just any setting.
The map that’s in the spotlight this week pulls it off rather nicely. Nightmare Orchards, a single player map created by Shaun Ross, takes place in a medieval environment. Shaun makes use of many custom textures from other classics like Rune and Daikatana though I could have sworn I spotted some Unreal textures in there as well. There’s a reason why the author strays away from the familiar Quake II texture settings, as he explains:
Originally for Quake, this was to be one of five levels myself and Tronyn were making as the sequel to Rapture. But as I started having compiling problems and running it in Quake, I decided to convert to the superior Quake2 engine so that it could be finished. Much more a Quake themed level than Quake2.
The world is filled with enemies so there’s not much time to rest between fights to admire the surroundings but it never feels unfair because the author gives you plenty of tools and ammunition to deal with them. I will let the video below do the rest of the explaining. Check it out and make sure to download the map and enjoy it yourself!