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Reviews: 24th June 2003.

Game - QUAKE
Map - sop : Source of Power (3 map PAK)
by - Graham Davis (OrbItaL)
re-released by - Bengt Jardrup (AguirRe)
Download -
Overall Verdict - A 3 map pack with an exploration/puzzle theme to the gameplay.

level 1; "Ogre Island".

Important Note:
This map pak was originally created by Graham Davis (OrbItaL) and released sometime in 1999. Unfortunately, it was only playable in DOS/WinQuake at the time and couldn't be played in any hardware accelerated engine like GLQuake. Therefore AguirRe decided to re-release the pack and fix this problem so now you *can* play them in GLQuake, etc. The maps are essentially exactly the same apart from this fix and some other small technical changes. AguirRe tried to contact the original author but was unable to. If you are the original author and want this pack discontinued and removed for download, please contact me to do so.
You should read AguirRe's "readme1st" text file for all the details as well as full explanations of various gameplay and technical issues/details.

sop1: Ogre Island
This is the first map proper after the slightly confusing start map [where you should look for guidance from the on-screen messages]. Its an island, but despite its name there are lots of different enemies: Enforcers, Fiends, Vores etc, not just Ogres.

It is quite nicely mapped for an outdoor island, the quake 1 engine being noted for *not* being helpful in designing realistic looking outside, natural terrain and landscape. There is a good sense of place, with some neat little touches like old abandoned work tools, and collapsing rocks. The layout is nicely inter-connected as well, and boxy boring rooms are avoided. Texturing is basic and could perhaps use more variety and attention to detail.

Gameplay is more exploration and puzzle-based than the average Quake 1 custom map, [a gameplay theme that is continued throughout the whole pack], although not excessively so in this first map. There are a couple of moments when its somewhat unclear what to do next, (at the end of the map you have to jump,i think), or what path to take. Just explore everywhere and watch for the on-screen messages that come up regularly and you should be ok though. Gameplay is quite nicely balanced and reasonably tricky for a first map in a pack. There are no really difficult big fights, though, just lots of small, potentially tricky situations, and hence a cautious approach is recommended.

level 2; "Exploration Camp".

sop2: Exploration Camp
The second map is quite heavy on exploration, as indeed indicated by its name. There are a number of points where it is not immediately obvious what you have to do next, or what path you should take. In general, these are reasonably simplistic puzzles and decisions, although sometimes its not clear what should be done next, and some players may become frustrated by the lack of clear indication or guidance, maybe more onscreen message may have helped here?

Gameplay is quite tough due mainly to the lack of health available, look for an unusual method and a more regular secret to help you here. Gameplay is also tougher than the first map, and some tricky monster placement will probably have some players reaching for the quicksave button, especially on hard skill.

The map is roughly same the size [50 enemies on Hard, mainly enforcers] as the first one, and the architecture is again somewhat basic with plain texturing. Its a base set on an Island which you approach by sea and then delve deeper inside as you explore. Again there are some neat little details and unusual design, some good imagination is shown in this respect.

level 3; "Getting closer".

sop3: Getting closer
Note: the proposed 4th map in the pack ("volcano island") was never completed, hence this is the last map in the pack.

A significantly larger, more complex map than the previous two, and as such a nice climax. The architecture is more ambitious than the previous two maps, consisting primarily of large outdoor areas, within which are situated various temples, textured in a classical/Egyptian temple texture set, complete with stone walls and strange hieroglyphic-type symbols and buttons. The temple setting allows more of the puzzle based gameplay, with on screen hints given guidance and various tablets/books to be read for clues. The inter-connectivity of the map is good and various backtracking/retracking is required. Once again at some points it is slightly unclear what path should be taken, but again exploration is the solution.

Gameplay is also quite tricky, ammo is reasonably low and health is also quite sparse. Still, with careful, cautious gameplay, progress will be made. There are some vores in nasty positions and also many tricky spawn which may cause problems. Monster in-fighting is useful. In terms of enemies there are a mix of traditional quake monsters (ogres, scrags, enforcers, fiends, vores) along with some custom monsters: [1] a rocket shooting grunt who is nasty but thankfully rare, [2] Mechanical star-wars type "walker" models which look *hugely* out of place in an ancient temple setting in my opinion. [3] "mini" or "baby" shamblers, either silly or fun, depending on your personal taste (I lie somewhere inbetween).
Overall gameplay is suitably tough and tricky, especially on hard skill, providing a fitting climax to this interesting, unusual and imaginative Quake 1 map pack.

Overall Scores:

sop1 Ogre Island 16/20
sop2 Exploration Camp 15/20
sop3 Getting closer 16/20

Overall Source of Power: 15/20