Map Review: The Labyrinth of Irritation
If you ask me, the Labyrinth of Irritation is a misnomer. As far as maps go, this one had less in it that irritated me than most of the maps I have played. The map has aspects of parkour and adventure, but its essence is that of a puzzle map. It is a series of loosely collected rooms and challenges that the player needs to weave their way through to eventually craft a diamond pickaxe and break through the obsidian wall in the grand lobby. It is played on peaceful difficulty with no mods.
Pretty much everything in this map works flawlessly. It took a little over an hour for me to finish, and in that time I found only 2 bugs. Beyond that, all the content was well designed. The player needs to unlock areas as they go, but the methods to keep you out are mostly unique from each other and are paced extremely well. The pathways knot together nicely so that you are constantly close to the entrance without being able to easily keep track of where you are. The map rarely (only at the very end) punishes you drastically for failure, and the puzzles are just cryptic enough to make you think about what you're doing the entire time. And the mapmaker didn't miss an oppurtunity to incorporate more content; even finding the crafting table once you have your diamonds is its own little challenge.
The visuals are ecclectic to say the least. A room 2 blocks away could have an entirely different decoration theme for no particular reason. Even then, the bulk of the map seems directed towards working nicely than looking pretty, so there are some ugly parts. BUT, I cannot recall a single instance where a stopped and noticed the seam between one theme and the next. It all transitioned smoothly enough to not be distracting from the gameplay. And there are some very nice rooms, like the main lobby, and some very entertaining rooms, like the room end of the map.
The map is essentially a puzzle map, so it doesn't do much as far as plot. The goal of the map is stated at the beginning (collect the diamonds to craft a pickaxe and break through the obsidian door), and it carries that through until you get your diamond pickaxe. You understand your goal and the steps towards finishing are paced well enough that you keep that goal in mind the whole time. There are signs from the mapmaker sporadically, but they don't really add or take away from the consistent feel of the map, and that's a good thing. My big issue with the map is that once you have gotten through the door, the map continues without any real purpose. Up to that point it was "get the sticks and diamonds and break through the door." After that, the only answer to why I was still playing was "to get to the other side" and that makes me feel like either a chicken or the butt of a bad joke. The content after that was still good, but it felt purposeless. Even a sign saying "There are great treasures beyond here" could have helped that, if only a little.
The map doesn't do a whole lot new. It is very much in the style of many classic custom maps. It does, however, have a very individual method of advancement and it keeps you involved in the map without any of the suspense brought on by difficulties above peaceful. And for what it is worth, has the best usage of armor enchantments that I've seen so far. For these, I give it
Overall Score: 23/30 and
Would I recommend it?
- To someone looking for a good puzzle map to play, absolutely.