Catacomb 3-D

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Catacomb 3-D
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Catacomb 3-D is the third game in the Catacomb series, and one of id Software's earliest attempts at a 3D game. It shares many file formats with Commander Keen 4-6.

The game is severely cut down, with limited sound effects, one music track and few graphics. The game has no storyline as such, the player wanders through various interconnected levels acquiring scrolls that further the story and provide hints.


The following tools are able to work with this game.

Name PlatformGroup/archives Levels Graphics Music Sounds Text Saves .exe patch Notes

File formats

The following file formats are used by this game.

Filename Format Details
! ? AudioT Format Sound and music
! ? EGAGraph Format Graphics, text and miscellaneous data
! ? GameMaps Format Level maps
N/A IMF Format Music inside AudioT file
cat3d.exe B800 Text There are a couple of text screens in the main .EXE file (including the text displayed on the screen when you quit)

In addition the .EXE is compressed with LZEXE, graphics and sounds are compressed using Huffman Compression, and levels using RLE compression and Carmackization.

Map Format

The maps use the GameMaps Format. Plane 0 defines the structure of the map and also certain specials, while Plane 2 is used for items, monsters and other interactive objects. Values over 255 are never used in either plane. Catacomb Abyss, Armageddon and Apocalypse are sometimes similar, but use a slightly more complicated system for locked doors, exploding walls and the like, so they must be treated separately. The map sizes can vary, but 40x28 is quite common.

Plane 0 Walls:

  • 0x00 01: Rough Grey Block Wall
  • 0x00 02: Slimy Brick Wall
  • 0x00 03: Plain Light Brick Wall
  • 0x00 04: Slimy Brick Wall + Blood
  • 0x00 05: Tar Wall
  • 0x00 06: Gold Brick Wall
  • 0x00 07: Hellish Wall
  • 0x00 08: Rough Grey Block Wall (Explodable)
  • 0x00 09: Slimy Brick Wall (Explodable)
  • 0x00 0A: Plain Light Brick Wall (Explodable)
  • 0x00 0B: Slimy Brick Wall + Blood (Explodable)
  • 0x00 0C: Tar Wall (Explodable)
  • 0x00 0D: Gold Brick Wall (Explodable)
  • 0x00 0E: Hellish Wall (Explodable)

Plane 0 Doors:

  • 0x00 14: Red Door
  • 0x00 18: Yellow Door
  • 0x00 1C: Green Door
  • 0x00 20: Blue Door

Plane 0 Floors: Different floors have two uses: to define which area text to use, and, when placed under a plane 2 portal tile, to tell the game what level the portal should go to, starting at "Floor A" for level 1. "Floor I" under a portal, for instance, makes that portal take the player to level 9. A "No Text" floor under a portal makes that portal go to the next level in sequence. Floors can presumably go up to Z, but no stock map uses that many area messages nor are there that many levels in the stock game.

  • 0x00 B4: Floor (No text)
  • 0x00 B5: Floor A
  • 0x00 B6: Floor B
  • 0x00 B7: Floor C
  • 0x00 B8: Floor D
  • 0x00 B9: Floor E
  • 0x00 BA: Floor F
  • 0x00 BB: Floor G
  • 0x00 BC: Floor H
  • 0x00 BD: Floor I
  • 0x00 BE: Floor J
  • 0x00 BF: Floor K
  • 0x00 C0: Floor L
  • 0x00 C1: Floor M
  • 0x00 C2: Floor N
  • 0x00 C3: Floor O
  • 0x00 C4: Floor P
  • 0x00 C5: Floor Q

Plane 2 Player start positions:

  • 0x00 01: Player Start (North)
  • 0x00 02: Player Start (East)
  • 0x00 03: Player Start (South)
  • 0x00 04: Player Start (West)

Plane 2 Items:

  • 0x00 05: Bolt
  • 0x00 06: Nuke
  • 0x00 07: Healing potion
  • 0x00 08: Red Key
  • 0x00 09: Yellow Key
  • 0x00 0A: Green Key
  • 0x00 0B: Blue Key
  • 0x00 0C: Scroll #1
  • 0x00 0D: Scroll #2
  • 0x00 0E: Scroll #3
  • 0x00 0F: Scroll #4
  • 0x00 10: Scroll #5
  • 0x00 11: Scroll #6
  • 0x00 12: Scroll #7
  • 0x00 13: Scroll #8
  • 0x00 14: Grelminar (Ends game when "taken")
  • 0x00 15: Treasure Chest (Bonus points)

Plane 2 monsters and other stuff: These monster tiles appear on all skill levels.

  • 0x00 16: Troll
  • 0x00 17: Orc
  • 0x00 18: Portal to another level (See notes in Plane 0 Floors section)
  • 0x00 19: Bat
  • 0x00 1A: Demon
  • 0x00 1B: Mage
  • 0x00 1C: Nemesis
  • 0x00 1D: Bouncy Fireball (North-South)
  • 0x00 1E: Bouncy Fireball (East-West)

Plane 2 teleports: Teleports swap player between one and the other of the same type within one level. For instance, entering a Teleport A object sends the player to another Teleport A. They need open space around them, or the player can get stuck!

  • 0x00 1F: Teleport A
  • 0x00 20: Teleport B
  • 0x00 21: Teleport C

Plane 2 monsters: These appear only on certain skill levels.

  • 0x00 24: Troll (Normal/Hard)
  • 0x00 25: Orc (Normal/Hard)
  • 0x00 26: Bat (Normal/Hard)
  • 0x00 27: Demon (Normal/Hard)
  • 0x00 28: Mage (Normal/Hard)
  • 0x00 29: Troll (Hard mode only)
  • 0x00 2A: Orc (Hard mode only)
  • 0x00 2B: Bat (Hard mode only)
  • 0x00 2C: Demon (Hard mode only)
  • 0x00 2D: Mage (Hard mode only)

Source code

The source code of this game was released by Flat Rock Software on June 6, 2014. It can be downloaded from GitHub.