BahdKo's description of: Kreuzin



Kreuzin was among the most well-known and well-respected Doom2 players in the Maryland-Virginia-DC area from around 1994 - 1997. When he first started playing, his mentor was a strong Virginia-based player named Escort. I have more information about Kreuzin than many of the other players I am writing about because I played him a lot, and had more opporatunity to listen to what he said.

By the time of the Deathmatch 95 tournament, he had become the top player on the DC Dwango server, and he went to Deathmatch 95 to compete with the other top Dwango players (Deathmatch 95 was the large tournament that Thresh won, and became very well known as a result). Kreuzin was a trackball+keys user at the time, and his trackball could not be made to work correctly with the machines on site. To the best of my memory, the symptom was that trackball caused constant, severe, unwanted movement in game, and it was caused by a device driver problem with this early version of Windows95. The tournament was held up for several hours while they tried to implement a fix, but they could not make it work correctly.

He played his first round with the trackball in this condition, and won (the rounds were very short). In his second round as a semi-finalist, he felt he had no choice but to attempt use of mouse+keys, and lost the round. Trackball is, of course, significantly different-handling than the mouse, and he did not expect to win that round with either a working mouse or his malfunctioning trackball against this particular player. Kreuzin did later convert to mouse+keys as his standard controller.

Kreuzin played locally on both DC Dwango and local Galacticomm Doom BBS's. Some of the local BBS's he was on were named AlterEgo, The Netherworld, and at least occasionally I.C.E.

ICE was the first place I saw him, in late Spring of 1995. It was clear that something was up from the start because when he came into the teleconference, the top regular player on the BBS (whose handle I am deliberately omitting because I think he still uses it) fled the room on sight of him. Kreuzin asked around for a game and most of the people declined, expressing sentements that they did not enjoy games where they could not get kills on their opponant. I had just started as as mouse+keys player, so didn't volunteer outright either. One named Gryphon eventually agreed to play, but only under the condition that Kreuzin would "go easy", Gryphon got to pick the map, and it would be a team game -- believe it or not beginner-ass ME and Gryphon against him. I was truly a straight-out beginner at the time, literally one week along in converting into a mouse+keys player from being a single-player Keyboarder. But Gryphon was refusing to go in alone, so I went on in with them. That was one hell of a first impression, even before we got into the game.

The map was Doom2 Map32. For about the first sixty seconds of the game I heard frag after frag happening rapidly, but I was not coordinated enough to have an idea of what was happening. Then, after a pause, Gryphon shouted into the game, apparrently as an un-respawned corpse, "I said go easy !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!". The speed of the frags slowed down after that.

Kreuzin massacred us, of course. One of the frags stuck in my mind, and I remember it to this day. I turned around, and the doom sprite that I knew would be him was standing directly in front of me. He had actually stopped moving and was just standing there, facing me. Being a beginner I had zero reflexes; I didn't fire, I just stood there thinking woah.. why am I not dead, and what do I do now? He proceeded to kill me with a point blank SSG after about two long seconds of this.

Later that summer, I began to seek him out to play because I had reached a skill level where I was no longer learning from most of the players at ICE, nor our other  local bbs, VGC. After I finally tracked him down by emailing the sysop of AlterEgo BBS, we played regularly, and he always allowed me to record. I would then watch the recordings closely to help me see where I could improve. I still have most of the recordings from our early games, including my first, second, and third Map1 games with him, although most of these recordings are not public. These games were the most influential of all in terms of my own development, and to this day there are undenyable stylistic similarities in our Doom2 Map1 and Dwango5 Map1 games. We are not identical by a long shot, but I can see from watching his recordings where there's just some things that we do alike; obvious stylistic influences I picked up from him and carry with me to this day.

Kreuzin stuck with Doom2 a bit longer than the other DC locals, playing both Doom2 when asked, as well as Quake, when the others had wholly migrated over to Quake. Kreuzin was never the kind of guy to turn down an offer for a game.

Stylistic information:

Kreuzin was extremely experienced and was proficient on every map I can think of. It was only after I began driving all over the country to catch up with and play various Doom-Gods that I came to understand his gameplay in depth, and this was after he and I had stopped playing regularly. I've come to some conclusions that I suspect he himself might disagree with, but if so, so be it.

One of the key factors that made Kreuzin as successful as he was against so many players on such a variety of maps was his imagination and creativity in game. Of course it takes a lot more than just creativity to win consistantly; you have to have all of of your technical stuff in order as well, which he did. His imagination, powers of observation, technical ability, and desire to win, when all put together, resulted in a winning combination.

Kreuzin's favorate map is Doom2 Map1, according to his own report, and he is an experienced, powerful player there and was well-known locally for it. His best map was Dwango5 Map1, however. He seemed not to realize how unique his game there is; when I told him once on IRC that I suspected this, he disagreed emphatically. Regardless, the fact is that Kreuzin's style is not as well-suited for Map1 as Dwango5 Map1; it doesen't give him as big an edge because the environment is simpler and there is less to work with. I have played so many highly-skilled players on both maps that I feel pretty accurate in this assessment, despite his own disagreement.

I should mention here that the above discussion of Map1 performance is all relative to very high skill levels. If you're not playing Doom2 Map1 at a high skill level, Kreuzin would kick your ass up and down Map1, badly, and he would make it look easy.

Other details:

Kreuzin is around 6'4", athletic in build. He has an unusual Doom keyboard config. The movement keys are all up along the right side of the alphabetic portion of the keyboard, and to change weapons I have seen him let go of his mouse with his right hand and reach across the keyboard to the weapon keys on the left hand side. He didn't have much to say about it when I asked why; in fact he didn't seem aware he was crossing hands to change weapons. He also demonstrated a tendancy to get angry if he wasn't doing comparatively well in-game.