Ancient Aliens WAD Review

Release: 07/17/2016
Author: Skillsaw (and others)

Review Date: 07/01/2019
Last Updated: 07/01/2019
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Summary

One of the best WADs out there in terms of atmosphere, music, experience, and gameplay. The length of the WAD is very good, the difficulty is just right and the levels  themselves are mostly perfect. Although I think the difficulty is fine for me, it is definitely a hard WAD to play on Ultra Violence, and can be painful at times.


Episode 1: “One Last Vision Quest”


MAP01: “The Ancient Navajo Wolf Warp”

A very fun and in-your-face starter map. It’s a gimmick map where a cyberdemon in the middle will constantly try to shoot at you as you go from side to side to collect objects and advance the progress. Fun, but a luck-fest that doesn’t offer anything too rewarding, but offers a fun foreboding atmosphere for the game to start on. The changing music in the start is also really cool!


MAP02: “Sanctum of the Wastes”

An extremely tight and low-resource map that can take you by surprise if you aren’t very careful. The music and atmosphere is great here and we get introduced to bigger monsters like the Mancubus and Revenants. Over all, it’s a great warmup after the somewhat of a gimmick starter map.


MAP03: “Arachnotron Arrival”

A very cool central gimmick of spiders that will infinitely spawn in the middle constantly finding and shooting at you as you attempt to navigate the map. As such, a lot of the areas that you transport to are in the open, with fences, with clear vision of the spider-bastards. It can be pretty luck heavy, but it’s fun in the end. The end of the map introduces the Super Shotgun and fun telefragging action!


MAP04: “Bad Medicine Men”

This map really ramps up the difficulty quite a bit. It takes the common gimmick we’ve seen so far and ups it to Arch-Viles. You’ve got two bad boys on pillars that have eyes on nearly the entire map, but when you get close to climbing up to the towers, you get free barrels to finish the job with, which is ultra satisfying. A fun map to play once you get your initial foothold.


MAP05: “Last Refuge of the Anasazi”

The first Boss Battle style map where a cyberdemon will roam free as you make your way across this level. You have the option to kill it quickly and avoid the headache, or you can let the infighting happen while you spin and weave around the fucker and do your objectives. A really fun and well made central arena makes this map a great experience.


Related: Ancient Aliens UV Max IL Records

MAP06: “Sinkhole Showdown”

This map is fun because the main arena is the entitled sinkhole, and as you progress throughout the map it gets lower and lower, revealing more caves of monsters. The final sink reveals arch-viles to bring back the dead foes from previous battles and trap you if you don’t see it coming. The end area lifts you back out of the sinkhole, and brings you home. At least, you wish it were home…


MAP07: “Dare to Fly Where Eagles Soar”

This map is a real clusterfuck. It has so many enemies and so many floors and height variances and almost always has someone somewhere causing trouble, whether it be a stray shotgunner, or a cacodemon or two stuffed behind a tree shooting over and over. This map gets frustrating, but it’s not too bad. The difficulty gets pretty high here, and you’ve got to move around with caution if you want to make it out of here. The music here, by the way, is also incredible. Fast paced and energetic and awesome!


MAP08: “Ancient Aliens”

The first real long map, especially in contrast to the first bunch of levels. The main fun factor here is the UFO stuff. There are several points in the map where you enter gravity lifts and go inside UFOs for extra fun stuff. For a map being named after the WAD itself, it’s good, but drags on a bit. The UFO area with the three arch-viles is too random and dying can be just a result of bad pain frame luck instead of anything else. At least the music is good, very long and smooth and chill beat that makes this funfest way more relaxing that it could be otherwise!


MAP09: “The Nectar Flow”

The first guest map, made by Joshy (and it shows), is a real slaughterfest. With nearly 600 monsters, this map’s gigantic alien caverns and courtyards are filled to the brim with demons to kill. This map gets hard. Really hard. You can either take it slowly and methodically, killing every monster slowly and safely, or run through and hope the monsters kill each other by the time you get out of some of the branch-off areas. The way the level loops around and how enemies leak into the main arenas is really great, but sometimes the monsters can get stuck behind fences or rocks in the backdrop. The music in this level is mellow, fun, and relaxing as all hell. Makes playing more like a dream than anything truly frustrating.


MAP10: “Gift of Denial”

This map closes off the episode in a great way. After the massive battles of the previous map, you get back to a more calm and serene environment, but that’s not to say that aforementioned environment doesn’t fill up with hellish alien beings! This map has tons of monsters in smaller areas, and funnels them nicely and neatly for rocket launcher or BFG cleanups. Yes. that’s correct, the BFG is at the very end of the map! This map’s music track is also phenomenal, reminding me of hope and potential, good themes signing off the first episode.


NEXT: Episode 2: “Applied Einstein” >>>