The license applies to MSDN text/images and to my levels

31st of October 2015

Baptized in Lunar Dust | Single/Multi | Author: Thobias "Loke" Fast | Download

The Review: Having left the heat of Arizona behind, Duke finds himself in a Moon base. Nominally, the setting may have changed but in reality little else has, for the hi-tech environments of Lunar Dust are eerily similar to those in Arizona, or Loke's AMC TC 2 map. In fact, you could easily turn this into a terrestrial map simply by changing three textures. So, the basic problem lies in the fact that the base itself is a bit too generic; it could be a typical and essentially purposeless hi-tech base in any environment. Moreover, lacking the ability to survive in a vacuum, the shift into a Lunar environment also seems to have confined Duke indoors so you'll be walking through dozens of corridors with nothing that'd break the hi-tech monotony.
Of course, once you get past the persistent déjà vu, you'll discover a map that's extremely detailed and polished while still leaving the player with plenty of room to move around, as you'd expect from Loke. Everything from texturing to spritework is of exceptionally high quality; every room should make you stop to appreciate the amount of work Loke has put into the map's seamless design. (Unfortunately, as is often the case, bland lighting seems to be a necessary corollary.) The map excels in the gameplay department as well, being easy to navigate and fun to play with a familiar 3-way (one for each key) hub structure. The rooms are generously spacious but you don't really get to find yourself in unfair situations where you're forced to take hitscan fire without cover. Also, while respawns are called for due to the map's hub-like structure, Loke has found just the right amount to keep things interesting while avoiding repetition. The boss finale, often a boring way to end a map, is one of the best I've come across. There's also a music track that in fact does a lot more to build a space-like atmosphere than the map itself does.

Conclusion: As an addition to Loke's portfolio, Baptized in Lunar Dust may be a bit too comfortable, but it's still an enjoyable, balanced map with some of the best hi-tech base design you'll ever come across.

Rating: 93

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