Claustrophobopolis, better known as Dm2, is one of the six deathmatch maps included with Quake. Originally featured in QTest, it is one of the biggest dueling maps that is still commonly played, and sees lots of play in all major gametypes. Thanks to the iconic big room, with its hanging crucified body and retractable lava floor trap, the level is probably one of the most recognizable and memorable in all of Quakeworld.
One of the most immediately distinctive features of this map when it comes to item layout is the absence of the Lightning Gun. This is probably due to the fact that the map was originally released with QTest, a release in which the lightning gun was not included. An even more curious aspect is that there are no less than two Red Armors, two Mega-Healths, and three Yellow Armors, which brings the average durability of each player up significantly.
One of the major features that makes this map unique is the lack of the Lightning Gun, which means Lightning Gun aim is less dominant, and Rocket Launcher based aim and strategy is more dominant. This is in contrast to maps such as Dm4 and Aerowalk, where Lightning Gun aim and strategy are both very important.
In spite of its size, Dm2 has remained a popular choice because every frag is very important. In tournament-level duels, this map is known for having 'soccer scores', where the final score differences are small. Despite this, the game itself is very intense as the players position and counter-position themselves to get the most advantage out of every fight.
In spite of its popularity, this map is also very polarizing. The fact that this map is so prone to low-scoring matches leads some players and spectators to believe that this leads to boring matches. Some players who are dissatisfied with the slower gameplay tend to nickname this map a 'Counterstrike' map.
The map itself can be considered one big circle, with the big room, water room and low Rocket Launcher room approximately equidistant from each other.
The Big Room
The iconic centrepiece of the map is a wide open arena with two cages on either side of the map where Yellow Armors spawn, and an upper niche area with a Mega-Health and Grenade Launcher. This room is the most popular fight area in duels, and there has been a lot of dodging strategy developed here, mostly based around the stairs leading up to the yellow armor cages.
Frequently referenced as 'big' in teamplay.
Upper Big Room
The upper area is accessible through the lower teleporter area, although some intrepid players can be seen rocketjumping from the stairs on the lower big room itself. This area gives the most straightforward access to the quad area, and across a moving platform lies the first of two Mega-Healths and a Grenade Launcher.
This small hallway is between the big room and the water area. It is split into two different areas, with the upper area containing a rocket launcher and the Quad, and a lower hallway which connects the big room to the water area. There is also a specific place in the lower hallway where a player can gain access to the quad platform by jumping on a team-mate's head.
Frequently referenced as 'quad' in teamplay.
While the room itself is a little sparse, only containing a Nailgun and some health packs, it is a very important room nonetheless, as this is the only area through which players can descend the stairs to the low teleporter. This teleporter is the only standard access to quad for people without a Rocket Launcher, so in team games this is usually the first area to gain control of, in order to control access to the high Rocket Launcher and Quad. In duels, this room is also very important, because it contains the biggest concentration of spawns on the map and allows for potentially game winning spawn-fragging. You can also go up the stairs to get to the Quad hallway or you can climb another set of stairs and go down another hallway to get to the low Rocket Launcher room or Red Armor Secret. Be sure to listen for the 'splash' of feet hitting water, for that signals that someone just made their way out of Red Armor Secret.
Often referred to as 'water' in teamplay.
This is less of a room and more of a hallway with a pack of rockets and a switch. Simply walk down the stairs, hit the switch and double back to the now-open grate to gain access to a Yellow Armor and the top of the Big Room. In team games, this area is very important to control for the same reason as the water room. In duels, the YA spawn point behind the bars is an extremely popular camping area, because it has a nice back exit.
Red Armor Secret
Simply known as 'secret', this area is accessible by shooting a button that is visible when looking at low rl from the hallway. A lone Red Armor rests here, and the only way out is through another hidden wall that dumps you out over the water, although it is possible to rocket jump back up to the secret door before it closes.
Rocket Launcher Room
This room contains the second of two rocket launchers in the entire map, and also contains the passageway to both the Mega+RA room, and the button room overlooking the same room. In team games, it is usually the last area of control, but it is very important to sweep the Rocket Launcher that spawns here every 30 seconds, to deny the opposing team significant firepower.
Often called 'low-RL' or 'low' in teamplay.
This area contains two powerful items right next to each other across a pit of lava that is easily jumped over. The entrance to this area is another lava pit that any player should learn to easily bunny hop over. Players can also access this room by rocket-jumping from the button room. There is a teleporter here for those who wish to make a quick exit to the Big room, and there are two exits that lead to the button room, one from the top of the stairs, and another through the use of a button-activated door across the lava pit. In duels, this is a popular camping area because it has multiple escape routes.
Referred to as 'RA-Mega' in teamplay.
This room contains a button that extends a bridge across the lava pit in the RA+Mega room. This is one area of attack against a camper inside the RA+Mega room. To make your entry here silent, make sure you have all the nails, so as to not pick up the nail pack in this area which alerts your approach to the camper. It also contains a handy back way into the RA+Mega if you have a teammate holding open the door for you. The RA+Mega camper can also use this room to extend the bridge, and camp on top of this bridge.
How to Play
As mentioned above, Dm2 favors a slow pace in duels, but can become quite fast paced due to Rocket Jump spots entering long corridors and the lack of a Lightning Gun. The slow pace is facilitated by a number of camping spots that can be transitioned between to run away from an opponent on a comeback. Dm2 has a good tendency for lots of spawn frags due to a number of spawn points being close in the Nailgun room (here are two famous examples).
Dm2 has one main point of control in 1on1 play: the lower Rocket Launcher room, since control of this room also gives control of the Red Armor + Megahealth room; a powerful combination when combined with the Rocket Launcher. However, like any sort of camping strategy, it gives plenty of time for the cautious opponent to stock up on supplies elsewhere in the map. This is especially true in Dm2 due to the fact that there is a second Red and a second Mega, contained in the secret room and the upper big room respectively. These powerful items effectively create another point of control, even though they are not located closely together. Even if the camping player somehow manages to keep the other powerups out of his opponent's reach, there is also the fact that there are three Yellow Armors on the map as well, which gives the down player further recourse for challenge. A dueller who can successfully deny his opponent the second RA and Mega in addition to keeping the lower Rocket Launcher area under control can quite safely be considered a timing and denial master. Dm2 is bar-none the hardest map in the BO5 to maplock.
Dm2 also has the distinction of having several viable camping spots on the map, where one can rotate between different camping spots once one has a comfortable lead. These spots are:
- Lower Teleporter area, behind the bars.
- Red/Mega room, next to the teleporter.
- The corner above the Nailgun player spawn in the Water room.
- The corner in the hallway with the lava pit connecting the big room and the lower Rocket Launcher room.
These four camping spots usually allow the camper enough warning to make a quick dash to someplace else safe, usually one of the other camping spots. As the camper rotates from spot to spot, his opponent will do his best to try and chase down the camper. Although this is difficult, with enough effort the opponent can manage to chip away at the camper's health, and maybe even score a few frags if the camper is careless.
This map is probably the most hated - and the most loved - of the classic "Big Three" maps. It's rather small with a number of narrow passages, which allows for interesting tactics with the Rocket and Grenade Launchers. The key to Dm2 lies in successful control of the Quad-Nailgun-teleporter area. When the teleporter is well defended, enemies will have to rely on the other two paths to Quad: either they will have to go from low via path, where they will run into a hailstorm of rockets launched from the Nailgun area; or they will have to wade through an ocean of grenades coming from big to quad-low.
Quadruns are often aimed at low and RA-Megahealth since the enemy tends to camp out here when they are not in control. A successful quadrunner can clear out low, get a Rocket Launcher to a teammate, grab the Red Armor and Megahealth, and return in good time to grab the next Quad. It is often possible to repeat this several times. Also, having one person run several quads in a row is good since he can more easily manage the timing of the Rocket Launcher and Red Armor, while the team-mates cover water, teleporter, and big.
Controlling Dm2 basically revolves around repeating this play while denying the enemy at least one of the Red Armors, and hopefully both Rocket Launchers. Of course the enemy will try to gain or take back control, and if this happens the best thing is often to try and flood the low teleporter. This way it is often possible to get one or two guys through to high. The best possible scenario is to have one guy who has Red Armor and a Rocket Launcher, who goes to the teleporter together with two weaker mates. The weaker mates go in first and distract the enemy (one can be sure that at least one person will be there trying to defend) while the guy with the higher stack can move in for the kill. If he can successfully hold the teleporter exit, it's possible for the team to rapidly move through to high and from there, onward to the Quad.
If there is a severe advantage over the enemies (the optimum being four guys with Red Armor and Rocket Launchers), it's possible to obtain a complete maplock by having one person defend the low teleporter, one keeping control of water, one camping low Rocket Launcher, and one quadrunner who goes from Quad via water to low and then comes around to clear out RA-mega. This way a team can quickly rack up frags without risking control. If the low teleporter is compromised somehow (e.g. an enemy spawns and slips through), the player defending it should follow the enemy through the teleporter and kill him somewhere around tele-high or high-Rocket Launcher. Meanwhile, the player defending water moves in to make sure no more enemies slip through the teleporter.
The player defending the teleporter (and sometimes water) must NEVER leave his post. If they need armor, they should make sure they are relieved by a team-mate before leaving. Leaving this area undefended for just 5-6 seconds can be enough for two enemies to spawn and slip through, which is very dangerous. If things get messy at the teleporter, team mates should not hesitate to help out. It's an absolute point of priority, since losing control of this area means giving the enemy more ways of getting to Quad.
If the team is losing and the enemy seems to be in control of quad and the surrounding areas, it's often wise to try to gather at low and try to stack up on ra and at least two rls. When the enemy quad approaches, it's possible to spread out in the rooms at low in such a way that the quad is slowed down a lot and quite possibly killed. Since quad can only approach low from two different ways, the first line of defense would obviously be shooting nails and rockets along platforms and path. With any luck, the enemy will get hit by one or two of these rockets, taking him down from a possible 200/200 to something more along the lines of 80/120. Thereafter, retreat back into the ra-mega room (the person shooting along path could go via ssg and the person shooting platforms would jump up through the trapdoor at button). From here, keep someone standing next to the ssg in the way mentioned above, ready to make an attack on approaching enemies from there. Quite possibly this is a kamikaze position, but when played correctly it can mean that the quad ends up taking a dip in the lava, or simply blowing himself up. Also, keep someone standing at the ledge next to the tele, ready to shoot rockets at anyone who tries to go to button and shoot from there. Meanwhile, the other two players can tele through, and hopefully catch the enemies unaware, seize control of water and tele, and turn the tables! (With any luck, that is...)
Handy moves on dm2:
- Stand on the topmost step of the stairs beneath quad. A teammate can jump up on you and onward to get quad. Knowing this move is a crucial skill for the beginning of the game - suppose you spawn at ng and a mate spawns at quad-low, you can have the quad within 5 seconds of game start! Be sure to get out of there quickly though, unless you know that another mate spawned at the low teleporter. Having quad is nice but you do not want to mess with an enemy carrying yellow armor and a rocket launcher when all you have is 100 hp and a boomstick...
- Jump from big-stairs to tele-high. Stand on the 2nd step from the top and make a curling rocketjump up. Make sure you time the jump properly, otherwise you might end up banging into the bottom or side of the moving platform. This is a move seldom seen in low division games, but properly executed it can be an excellent way of grabbing the quad from an unexpected angle if the enemy is defending the teleporter.
- A number of jumps in and around the stairs leading down to the teleporter;
jump from the ledge at the top and all the way down (although this leaves you vulnerable to rockets from below)
jump from the 2nd step from the top, out over the lava, and then onto the ledge at the top (useful for distracting enemies that are chasing you, or when you're under fire and want to dodge)
- Rocketjump from tele-high to big-top (it's actually possible to walk across on the beams that run in the roof). Also, standing up here *can* be an excellent spot for camping the teleporter exit, although it leaves you open for attacks from big-floor if anyone sees you standing up there.
- Strafejump across the lava at RA-Mega, to get the goodies without extending the bridge.
- Curl around the corner at the super shotgun. You should be able to perform this jump in both directions.
- Although it can be very hard, it's possible to make a curling jump from rl-high to quad without rocketjumping. Don't try it in a game unless you're sure you can pull it off.
- When you're standing at quad, you can lob grenades towards the teleporter and actually bounce them off the pillar. When done correctly this will land the grenades right by the spawn point next to the button!
- When you're waiting for the quad, switch positions between standing right next to the quad spawn point, a bit closer to the ledge, and across the gap. This will make you a hard target for rockets coming from tele.
- It's possible to stand in the teleporter stairs and shoot rockets at quad. Just watch out for teammates going for the quad; the rockets take quite some time to reach quad from the stairs.
- Defend RA-Mega by standing next to the super shotgun spawn. Make sure you stand close to the lava, otherwise you will take splash damage from rockets fired from button. When an enemy tries to jump around the corner, either shoot him with the super shotgun so he falls down, or just be in his way so he lands in the lava. Of course you need to look out for teammates trying to get around here as well.
- When you're going for RA-secret, there are a few tricks. First, you can open the trapdoor from low by shooting a rocket at the wall next to the button. This way the door will be open when you get to it, which saves precious time. Secondly, when you're leaving the room, it's possible to make a jump from the ledge over the water, all the way to the solid floor. Doing this will confuse the enemy, since landing in water makes a very unique sound, revealing your position to everyone who's close by. Also, when you're waiting for the red armor, make sure you don't stand right beneath the trapdoor. - It's possible to jump from the spawn point at water (the 'hole in the wall' right beneath the path) onto the ledge by the RA-secret exit. When you're standing here you have a good chance of catching people coming out of RA-secret, although you had better be stacked since they will likely be packing a punch. :p
- Stand in one of the yellow armor boxes in big and keep a lookout for enemies coming from quad-low. If you time this correctly, you can telefrag them! Killing the quad this way is excellent.