Wanton Destruction

Wanton Destruction was one of the many Build Engine add-ons created at Sunstorm Interactive. On this project I provided two single player levels and four multiplayer levels. I also managed the rest of the level designers who were mostly external. Providing technical, aesthetic, and gameplay feedback, as well as continued to maintain the GAMER program for managing Sunstorm add-ons (though this was eventually replaced with a proper Windows Installer).

I can directly attribute the work I did on this add-on to finally getting hired at 3D Realms. When they decided they wanted to hire a level designer for DNF they talked about the airplane level from this add-on and called me up. Patience and practice do indeed pay off.

As this was ramping down I knew I wanted to move on to bigger and better projects versus doing add-ons and Deer Hunter titles forever. I applied and was given an offer from Ritual, though I stayed long enough to finish the parts I was responsible for. All of the new art and creatures were created after I left, but the maps I created didn’t change.

Unfortunately due to the low sales of Shadow Warrior, it was never commercially released even though it had been approved by 3D Realms. This was disappointing for me personally as I was very happy with how my levels had turned out and was looking forward to player reactions.

Years later, the CD was discovered again and 3D Realms released it for free. You can read more as well as download the full thing here:

For more detailed information see the following subsections:

If you are able to play, then to load the missions I created, hit T and type in these cheat codes:

Single Player Levels:

  • swtrek10
  • swtrek20

Multiplayer Levels:

  • swtrek01
  • swtrek02
  • swtrek03
  • swtrek04 (Capture the Flag)

Single Player Level Tidbits

– Airplane (swtrek10)

Playthrough

This level ranks in the top tier of all the levels I’ve made. I set out to make the space as believable as possible with the engine, but still fun and interesting to move through. I wanted to hit a couple key player events when working on this.

  1. I wanted the player to have to go outside and run around on the wings and back of the plane. The illusion worked really well.
  2. Be in the cockpit and witness the plane crashing into a mountain. This one actually came out better than I originally anticipated.
  3. Hanging from the cargo hold under the plane. This effect works, but doesn’t make much sense (there is a ladder? Why?) and the jump puzzle I matched with it is much too difficult and unforgiving.
  4. Flush the toilet and have it overflow. Just because.

Unfortunately with the modern ports the fog doesn’t work correctly, so if played in these the exterior effects don’t blend the way they should. However you can still get a feel for it.

If I were to go back and change anything in this map, it would be making the two key card jump puzzles easier, or remove them entirely. The enemy concentration can be brutal, but mostly because they can shoot through curtains when they can’t see you. I am very happy with the room over room effect in the cargo hold area.

This was one of the more successful “premise to execution” designs I’ve worked on and I’m glad it is finally available for Shadow Warrior fans to play.

– Rooftop Boss Battles (swtrek20)

Playthrough

The rooftops level served as the final boss encounter for the add-on. The premise is you need to defeat two bosses on the roof of the buildings to your left and right in order to get into the main building in front of you, where Zilla is waiting to be finished off.

The goal of getting you to feel high above the city works well (though the fog not working in the ports affects the illusion), and the final room over room effect in the last room with Zilla helps really sell an illusion of 3D in the engine. I like this map… I think it works well though I now wish I had done some major scripting event in the outside area to draw your attention to the final building once you defeated the first two bosses.

Multi-Player Level Tidbits

– Waterfight (swtrek01)

Playthrough

This level started out as my Shadow Warrior feature test bed. One thing I like about the level is the amount of variety in environments you get. Forests, Dojos, Canyon, High Tech, waterfalls, lake, etc. It all flows together pretty well and makes for a good sense of movement.

The novel element from the level that really mixes it up a bit are the four jet skis in the water that make up the bulk of the player space. Each one has a different attack mode and speed of movement (identified by color), making it a fun rush to get the vehicle you enjoy most. There are also switches to flip that can affect players in other parts of the map who are going for high powered goodies.

If I were to change anything it would be to make the path towards the dojo loop back around to the central arena. Right now it is a dead end and provides no circular movement.

– WDDM01 (swtrek02)

Playthrough

This is a small arena map with turrets on elevated platforms, and 8 vehicles down in the arena floor. There is no way to get back up to the upper ledges so if you are knocked off you are exposed to everyone and at risk of being run over. The turrets are extremely powerful, but you are exposed to someone running around on top, and if you are focused on people up top, the people on the arena floor can reach you with their vehicle weapons.

This is one of two maps I built in a couple of hours for fun while taking a break from my main levels. It provided us with a decent amount of entertainment value and wound up becoming the favorite at the office.

– WDDM02 (swtrek03)

This is the other map built in a couple of hours for fun. All of the weapons are situated on surfaces which cause damage over time. This forces people to decide to go for them, or try to pick off people going for them with the default weapons.

The main showcase for the map is the use of room over room for a significant 3D feel to the environment.

– WDCTF01 (swtrek04)

Shadow Warrior has a pretty basic Capture the Flag mode, so I wanted to support it with the add-on. I fiddled around with this map and though I never got to where I was really happy with it, nor was it ever really play tested or stress tested. Overall I’m pretty sure it would have worked, but without 8 people running around in it doing things I never thought they would or could do there isn’t any way for me to know for sure.

The primary gameplay hook for the mission is the field you need to cross to get to the other base will kill you quickly. So you need to ride on these skateboard like structures to get across. Naturally players can die on the skateboards so you were able to generally get out into the playing field to nab one if none were close to your base.