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h3r3tic::khazad-dûm 1.1

Game : Heretic from Raven Software / id Software

Download version 1.0 : Click here to download hkhazad.zip (190 KB)
Download version 1.1 : Click here to download hkhazd11.zip (305 KB)

About Version 1.1
The Story
My Opinion
Captain's Log

About Version 1.1

Title picture (67 KB)Version 1.1 is available since July 2000. It features new textures like banners and a huge statue of a long forgotten Dwarf King. Rooms are much more detailed, with actual arches and more light effects. There's a new title picture too, which you can see on the right.

Last but not least, version 1.1 features a new original tune. This comes from Patrice Deceuninck, a very talented composer, who has nicely allowed me to use it in my level.

Important Note

You might want to stick with version 1.0 for the following reasons:

The file is now too big for some features of the game to work properly. In particular, you can't save your progress anymore. If you try to do so, you'll get kicked out.
There is a great freeware OpenGL version of Heretic called JHeretic. At this time however, Khazad-dûm has some problems running with it. People might argue whether it is my fault or not. Right now, the game freezes in some places, and recorded demos do not run too well.
For these reasons, version 1.0 remains available for download. Try version 1.1, and if you can't cope with the flaws above, get back to 1.0

The Story

The light of the shaft fell directly on a table in the middle of the room: a single oblong block, about two feet high, upon which was laid a great slab of white stone.

'It looks like a tomb,' muttered Frodo, and bent forwards with a curious sense of foreboding, to look more closely at it. Gandalf came quickly to his side. On the slab runes were deeply graven.

'These are Daeron's Runes, such as were used of old in Moria,' said Gandalf. 'Here is written in the tongues of Men and Dwarves:


'He is dead then,' said Frodo. 'I feared it was so.' Gimli cast his hood over his face.


Gandalf had hardly spoken these words, when there came a great noise: a rolling Boom that seemed to come from depths far below, and to tremble in the stone at their feet. They sprang towards the door in alarm. Doom, doom it rolled again, as if huge hands were turning the very caverns of Moria into a vast drum. Then there came an echoing blast: a great horn was blown in the hall, and answering horns and harsh cries were heard further off. There was a hurrying sound of many feet.

'They are coming!' cried Legolas.

'We cannot get out,' said Gimli.

'Trapped!' cried Gandalf. 'Why did I delay?'


Suddenly Frodo saw before him a black chasm. At the end of the hall the floor vanished and fell to an unknown depth. The outer door could only be reached by a slender bridge of stone, without kerb or rail, that spanned the chasm with one curving spring of fifty feet. (...) Legolas turned and set an arrow to the string, though it was a long shot for his small bow. He drew, but his hand fell, and the arrow slipped to the ground. He gave a cry of dismay and fear. (...)

'Ai! ai!' wailed Legolas. 'A Balrog! A Balrog is come!'

Gimli stared with wide eyes. 'Durin's Bane!' he cried, and letting his axe fall he covered his face.

'A Balrog,' muttered Gandalf. 'Now I understand.' He faltered and leaned heavily on his staff. 'What an evil fortune! And I am already weary.'


It stepped forward slowly on to the bridge, and suddenly it drew itself up to a great height, and its wings were spread from wall to wall; but still Gandalf could be seen, glimmering in the gloom. (...)

From out of the shadow a red sword leaped flaming.

Glamdring glittered white in answer.

There was a ringing clash and a stab of white fire. The Balrog fell back and its sword flew up in molten fragments. The wizard swayed on the bridge, stepped back a pace, and then again stood still.

'You cannot pass!' he said.


With a terrible cry the Balrog fell forward, and its shadow plunged down and vanished. But even as it fell it swung its whip, and the thongs lashed and curled about the wizard's knees, dragging him to the brink. He staggered and fell, grasped vainly at the stone, and slid into the abyss. 'Fly, you fools!' he cried, and was gone.

Extracts from "The FellowShip of The Ring",
Chapter 5, J.R.R. Tolkien


So, what is it all about?

Gandalf and his friends are on their way east. Their last resort to cross the mountains is to get through the Moria, city of Dwarves.

Unfortunately, it has now become a dark and dangerous underground labyrinth. The east door is not very far now, but an oppressive feeling is growing... Will our fellows reach the valley of the Anduin river?


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"There was a horn-blast and a rush of feet, and orcs one after another leaped into the chamber."

Orcs are attacking in the Mazarbul Chamber, forcing you to retreat. To the right, the remains of the book left by Balin's folk.

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" 'Ghash!' muttered Gandalf, 'I wonder if that is what they meant: that the lower levels are on fire? Still we can only go on.' "

You should not stay there for too long, or the Balrog may show up. Along with some friends...

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"They passed into a hall, bright with daylight from its high windows in the east. They fled across it."

Almost done ! Get through the broken doors and exit the Moria.

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" 'Ever he clutched me, and ever I hewed him, till at last he fled into dark tunnels.' "

The Balrog has followed you into unexplored caves, far under the living Earth. It doesn't look too good for you, does it?

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Black Uruks have tracked you down. They're attacking from all directions. There's no way out, now. Prepare for your fate.

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"Aragorn smote to the ground the captain that stood in his path, and the rest fled in terror of his wrath."

Here are the Great Gates, and at the back you can see the Kheled-zâram.

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You have found a hidden weapon room. That mace may come in handy against the Balrog. Now find a Tome of Power to enhance its effects.

My Opinion

This one is definitely my favorite. It depicts one of the most impressive episodes of The Lord of the Rings: The Bridge of Khazad-dûm.

It is a highly polished level than can be played in lots of different ways. Following the plot of the book will get you out easily. If you run into the Balrog and his minions, you will encounter a fair challenge. There are several ways to get to the exit, so you can play it coop'. And finally it is perfectly suited for deathmatch, with plenty of secret passages (you'll love the Endless Stair) and a vast central hall with several morph ovums (ready for chicken run?).

This level started as an effort to illustrate the great book from J.R.R. Tolkien and I hope I got pretty accurate in this matter. It will lead you from the Chamber of Mazarbul to the East Gates of the Moria.
After that it grew little by little as I added more rooms, underground rivers, caves and stairs. Finally I added three demos and a title screen.

Now version 1.1 is out and it adds even more details everywhere. Don't miss it !

Captain's Log

January 1998
I created this level on the 1st of May 1996. From then to June 1997, I spent about 3 weeks of work. Version 1.0 was released in January 1998 on this website. Although I only used personal utilities, this version featured a modified title screen.

Started working again on this level late in April 2000. The goal is to add more detail and better textures. Used Deutex to add several modified Hexen textures and several completely new ones like a huge statue representing a Darf King. Used Windeu32 version 5.99b1 to get past low MS-DOS memory limit.

Currently this level is doing fine and it is nearly complete. Operations still needed: checking item and monster placement and skill settings, checking whole level for texture alignment, fixing Hall of Mirrors in one room, recording and adding new demos, updating readme file.

Several annoying bugs will remain. The file has now grown to over 600 KB pure level data (no textures or anything), so you can't save your progress during the game anymore. Trying to do so will get you kicked out of Heretic. I don't think I can do anything about it really. Furthermore, this level may not run too well using JHeretic, the new freeware OpenGL Heretic source port. I have noticed that the game freezes when walking through some complex doors. Too bad really, because the OpenGL version looks really good!

Anyway, I intend to keep version 1.0 available for download, so people can choose between security and details.

Version 1.1 is out. Fixed Hall of Mirrors bug in the blue room, but I had to remove the drain that ran from the waterfall to the canal. :o(

Texture alignment has been fixed everywhere as far as I know. New demos are in and they're quite fun to look at, especially the second and third where I go completely crazy running through zillions of enemies. I have also used a snapshot of a small Quake map I've started some time ago to draw a new title picture.

Patrice Deceuninck has given me the right to use one of his great tunes, so that is a very pleasant surprise. Many thanks to this great composer.

As expected, two bugs remain. The save command doesn't work, and the game freezes in JHeretic.