Map Review of psychic-agog

by dunkelschwamm | January 22, 2023 | 3599 characters

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Psychic Agog is a seemingly "beta" map release by RNG. It's been in this state going on 14 years now, so I think it's probably safe to presume RNG's interests have moved on and we can take a look on what this beta release stands to say on its own now.

The map is an action walkthrough with the slightest, slightest hint of a puzzle element. Players traverse a surreal (but not THAT surreal by RNG standards) illusion world which exists as some sort of experiment. Players traverse the initial stage by exploring an open area and solving tiny contextual puzzles in the environment before entering a new area, and it's mostly linear gunplay from there.

Once action kicks up players are given some standard weaponry to defend themselves (revolver, shotgun, M16, ammo), and are put up against stukabats, zombies, barneys, and gonomes. Enemies are a bit tanky, but using teamwork and focused fire fells them before long.

Another aspect of the actiony segments of the game that had nothing to do with action was the cube pushing: once guns got introduced to the game the rest of it had to do with cube pushing. Push a cube down a maze, get a cube from a high ledge, unlock a cube from its cube prison- if you're pushing a cube you're probably the one winning the map. I found there were some times that the Sven pushable brush object is harder to push around than usual in this map, so that can be tedious.

In typical RNG fashion, the map is a real trip. Clever use of slightly colored lighting makes brutalist, surreal, concrete cube architecture look like it has a soul. Clever use of monochromatic areas creates strange, controlled areas for the test. There's a couple really fun cutscenes with great framing. The "puzzles" convey their solutions decently well, and the custom enemy models in places add a little special something.

That said, there was a bit where we were supposed to shoot these giant monitor screens to proceed, and were told to do so, but the monitor screens blended into the wall and were hard to see. Meanwhile, there were other monitors in the area we were told to search which were much more prominent and not what we were supposed to find. Also, the areas made up of optical illusions were a literal eyesore.

Overall, despite not being finished, I think this is a solid map that is consistently fun and even of a state I'd personally consider fully releasable. The map does end, despite not having its proper ending, so it works great on map rotations for your action/walkthrough map lists. I'd recommend giving it a go!


  • Lots of the map is very pretty in the grungy surrealist sci-fi style RNG is so known for
  • Lots of ammo for dealing with balanced enemies
  • Tries lots of things, and most of them are fun or at least interesting
  • Generally good conveyance
  • Fun secrets
  • Interesting music that certainly sets the mood


  • Somewhat boring weapon loadout for such a zany environment
  • Some of the ideas, such as horde battling stuka bats in an optical illusion room, or pushing a cube down a hallway or maze, only serve to grind the map to a halt
  • Eyesore optical illusion room. The one with the pillars, especially
  • There's a teleporter with mandatory damage. Sure, players can heal each other right after. But it's another thing that grinds things to a halt
Score: 6.9 / 10
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