"A nostalgic voyage to the future..."





of January

I finished playing Tempus Irae and it seems there are no big scenarios on the horizon...
I played again a couple of levels of the old and loved Marathon 1, but it was too easy:
I remembered almost all the puzzles! (And the engine is a little primitive...)
What can I do?... A scenario?
Returning to this nice old ship where I spent so many beautiful hours of my life...

End of

I was not sure if I could do that, or if doing this would annoy the original makers
of the game... I asked Bungie Software directly and they said:
"Go ahead and forge away! ...Thats it, have fun!"
I was happy!

to April

 I spent almost all of my free time thinking about new ideas, the plot, etc
and filling a complete notebook with these ideas, notes and a lot of sketches...

April to

With a lot of ideas in my hands, I put those hands to work creating a lot of
things like Shapes, Sounds, Images, the Engine, Maps and other stuff that I can't
really remember now...

March 15

Today, after about a year of work, the preview of the scenario is released
with the finished level one... (Fortunately a great part of the hard work
for the next levels is already done.) Thanks to Claude for the installer, map
help and the presentation of the scenario to the marathon community,
I am happy again!

 End of

Taking account of the feedback about the demo, A LOT of changes are made
to improve things, like adding some areas, improving monster behavior and
appearance, space-walking physics, and others...
(Thanks all the people for the feedback!)

of April
 It is decided to release the scenario in chapters. Very cool idea for the
(little) group of RTM fanatics! The first chapter will be released soon...
The release of the first chapter was delayed a little, sorry...
there is still a level to finish for the release of this first chapter,
we hope to finish them at end of 1999 or beginning the 2K


It is opened the recruitment page for friends interested to work in the next chapters of RTM,
(after the release of the first one)


 Alphatesting of the first chapter


 After the alphatesting stage there were big changes in the plot and in the configuration of the levels
The project was stopped for some months but today we are restarting to work
Thanks to all of you for your patience. We hope to finish before the end of the year


Release of the FIRST CHAPTER!






 I am stuck in the space almost without oxygen and nine Pfhorbobs are trying to kill me...

 Matthew Neerman

Antonio and the rest of the Rtm team - In a word, AWESOME!!!

I really like what you and your compatriots did with the original Marathon maps - tying them together
with new scenery, etc. to create the 1st chapter of RtM!

I always wondered what became of the Marathon after M1 and M2; I think your groups' storyline and total conversion are well underway to filling in a large gap that Bungie never filled - the fate of the ship herself!

I like it. I can't wait to see more. This scenario captures the creepiness of the Marathon universe like no
other, with the possible exception of Evil. Thanks for the hard work - it really paid off!

 Nikolaus Wegner

 You are EVIL :)

First you make Never Burn Money even more scary, then you put all the cool weapons out of reach,
and now I'm gonna unload all my ammo into any green space I see because of that room with the
trooper BoBs. Also, I was walking along, heard the characteristic chirp of an activating
explodithing from m1, and whisper to myself "justanambientsound" a couple times, but then, of course,
I get blown around by an exploding mine. Looking through the "fun room", I was wildly firing at all
those freaky BoB-headed aliens (damn you for putting them under glass) but at least I put that poor bastard
out of his missery. Seeing his wife talk about him on a nearby term didn't help any either. OMYGOD.
And what happened to the deprevation chamber? You holed it! That place was cool,
but now it's just a wild ride...

...Killing those BoBorgs, I had 1 magnum bullet left. It didn't help at all that those sph't just kept coming,
and that the hulk could hit me through the bars. Then, of course, going through all that,
you just HAD to put in SLN, TLC, didn't you? Those claustrophobic corridors are very, very dark unless
you crank the gamma all the way up. After a certain point, I couldn't stand it anymore, and I cheated
just to stay alive. The goose bumps never left my arms, and I was wrapped in blankets trying to stay warm. How do you live with yourself?? By the time the next part comes out, I sure hope you get the mml
working so I can at least have the comfort of Aleph One's crosshair...

It was like Marathon 1 all over again. M2 and Infinity never quite captured the same level of terror
(although a few of those levels can really get to you), but RtM does it well. What a blast.

 Christian Beijner

 Good scenario, loved (or hated) the moving mines especially.
Loved the "been there, done that...hey, waitaminute" feeling.
It's a hard scenario though, even without enemies. Thought I would give up on level 1 before I found
the entrance and solving the level took a fair bit,
would have liked more clues as to which switch does what...

Oh... I forgot my favourite part. The ship (I forget it's name), apart from giving
the player a base, is a really nice touch and very well done in concept and


 Well, guys, what can I say?

Give me chapter two RIGHT NOW or a very addicted and mad marine will come to get you! hehehe

Wow, congrats to all the return to marathon team, what a great scenario and I loved the graphism.
New monsters were superb... but of course they were not a match for my wits hehe

Well, now, lets talk seriously, I can guess how hard and how long this work must have taken you all
so I will leave you a whole 24 hours to deliver chapter 2... nah don't thank me,
I just feel generous... hehe BRAVO!


 The Return to Marathon scenario got my attention when it was first announced, and although
I decided to hold off on the one-level preview, I started downloading the first episode as soon
as it was announced. It took me quite a while to get all the floppy-sized chunks, but when I finally got
around to actually playing the scenario, I was very impressed with it. Creeping around the apparently
familiar but subtly changed halls of the Marathon once more gave me what seemed to be the same flesh-crawling, heart-thumping feeling I got when first playing Marathon. Now, though,
I've got a G3 instead of an LC II, so I can get even deeper into the game.

In a way, it impressed me that you would put negative as well as positive comments on the page detailing reactions. I noted, as others have noted, that this scenario has been assembled out of maps, textures,
and sprites borrowed and modified from the original Marathon and other packages, and I sometimes
wondered if the scenario was borrowing some of its excellence. However, that didn't bother me.
In a way, seeing the original Marathon levels weathered and littered with garbage, with just enough
changes to keep me watching carefully, had more of an emotional effect on me than simply wandering
around a Marathon-esque map. However, I did think the additions to the maps, such as the docking bays, oxygen towers, and the observation deck where I found the first working terminal, had a solid
Marathon feel to them, and I'd be interested in seeing more touches like them. One thing that did strike
me was how large RtM's levels feel, given that they're made up of two or three original levels put together
and added to.

The bizarre Pfhor-human hybrids definitely got my attention, although, in a way, the alien that had me
the most worried was the tiny crawling mine. After I realised what they could do, I was checking the
floors as nervously as I did in Looker-infested levels of the original Marathon. The sniper rifle was also
an interesting addition. It's powerful, but it's not the kind of weapon I'd want to carry into a firefight.
As for ammunition supplies, there generally seemed to be barely enough. I tried to handle
the drones outside the Marathon by punching them, without a whole lot of success.

Return to Marathon's story, what I've seen of it so far, is quite good. That, in a way, is an area of
particular interest for me. I sometimes wonder if the gameplay or the story of Marathon keeps me
interested in it, but a definite bugbear of mine is the perfunctory stories in a lot of third-party levels.
It's a reason why I'm more interested in Tempus Irae than in Marathon: Evil, why I wish the people
who compiled the complete Origin of Species pack a while back would have attempted to provide a
genuine conclusion, and why I get annoyed in scenarios that promise to be continued but never get
around to it. I hope very much, of course, that RtM will be continued, partly because the story is
very interesting. I enjoyed the Marathon-style random terminals scattered throughout the game.
The one in the observation room, where the trapped civilians look out at the stars, was very moving,
and I enjoyed the terminal where someone casts doubt on the hero ever existing.
(However, I wondered, yet again, why people keep calling the main character a "marine." To me,
Doom has a marine, and Marathon has a security officer. But I digress.) As for the final terminal-- well,
that definitely made me want to see the sequel. At the same time, though, it made me wonder and hope
if Leela might show up as well. I keep wanting to see a scenario with her in it.

In conclusion, I have to use a bit of praise that I've used in other settings, that Return to Marathon
seems greater than the sum of its parts.
I certainly hope that we'll continue to explore the abandoned colony ship.


 Hey, well - this is so incredible. Unbelievable big stuff! Marathon remains the best game ever.

I wonder: what would "The Return" look like in "Aleph One"??? Even bigger!!!
So - is ist already possible to use it with Aleph???

Just give me a hint! Regards and thanks to you all for a great job


 I had to take the time to thank you and the team for Return To Marathon.
It's a wonderful scenario, and I'm having a blast playing it. I've been playing Marathon since the beginning, and have played most of the third-party levels and scenarios, and it's great to have folks like you
turning out scenarios as nice as this.

There's nothing like the Marathon experience - it's bigger than the game itself. I don't know if it's
because it coincided with the explosion of the Web, and the cutting-edge feeling that came with it,
or if it was such a good game for the Mac, when there were hardly any others. At any rate, the
Marathon community has endured through efforts like yours, and I am grateful for it.

 Daniel Mark

 My god...I haven't had so much fun, nor been so paranoid playing Marathon (*any* version) for years...

You folks had better have Chapter 2 on the way real soon, or I'll go insane...amazing work on this.
Talk about heavy, heavy doses of nostalgia and creepiness!

I salute've proven there's still life left in this little game. =]
Please, I beg of thee...tell me chapter 2 is coming soon... =]


 I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed playing the first chapter of RTM.
It seems so long ago the demo came out and I played that thinking 'I want more!'.
Now I've played this I still want more! What a lot of work has gone into this, well done :-)


 I just finished playing your scenario and I have but one complaint: You only released Chapter 1!!!
Now I have to bide my time, anxiously awaiting the next installment. I must say that the Return to
Marathon team has done an exceptional job recapturing the atmosphere of the original M1. I find
myself leaning side to side in my chair to peek around dark corners, hoping to get one quick glance at
what awaits me. The atmospheric sounds are a tremendous addition to the game as well.
Keep up the great work and I will wait impatiently
for the next installments of my newly returned addiction.


 Hey I love this game. The flow is great and I love what you've done to the weapons and scenery...
...I really love this game. Those little moving mines are killer, literally. thanks...


Thanks for a really good marathon TC. Just finished it...
its 1.00 AM I´m going to school in 5 Hours

 Jeff and Steve

 Great scenario!...We haven't finished the last part of chapter one yet,
we can hardly wait for chapter two!!


 My Name's Ben, and I'm creating a scenario for Infinity which involves a brief series of levels aboard the original marathon. I was extremely impressed with the first chapter of Return To Marathon and realized quickly that I couldn't hope to do a better recreation....


 I finished playing RTM the other day and just wanted to drop a line to tell you how very much I enjoyed it. You managed to create even more suspense than Evil, which was quite a rush the first time through.
I stayed up so late playing that I was late for work, my wife got mad at me for hogging the computer,
and my kids were wondering where I had gone - all signs of a truly excellent scenario.
The only critique I can offer is that it wasn't long enough - please be encouraged to continue with the story!

I am an aging Marathon fan - I've been playing since Pathways Into Darkness first came out.
I live in Canada, in Edmonton, Alberta.

If you ever feel inclined, or have the time, to put out a patch for Infinity for the sniper rifle, I would be one happy person. A number of people have tried to make a sniper rifle over the years, but nobody has
even come close to your work - the art for the rifle and especially the ammunition, the sound and recoil effect...absolutely perfect.

Thank you very much for a really good play. Please pass this on to everybody else who helped you
with Return To Marathon.


 Return to Marathon rules. I like the airlock tricks in particular. But what I like most is how it has
been made to look just how I imagined the Marathon would look like after having been abandoned
for 180 years. Well, not totally abandonned, there is still a welcoming party of pfhor to greet you,
but I don't think that they would really give a stuff about maintaining a captured hollowed out asteriod.
Let's just say that it was abandoned of cleaners and pannel beaters, and electricians. ENOUGH!

Anyway, RtM is not only a great challenge, but a near perfect attempt at reconstructing the
Marathon looking all old and smeggy. I say "near perfect" only because of the lack of multiplayer
(hint hint). What I would really like to see in a future chapter is all of the old non-pfhor netmaps
reconstructed to look all rusted and crappy. Player sprites would not go astray either.


 Positively the biggest levels I've ever seen. This was really fun and really scary.
I especially enjoyed "Where is my AI?" Those rolling mines were a great idea. Awesome art.
There wasn't a thing I didn't like about this unless you count the constant lack of oxygen.
I crashed straight into those human cyborgs. That freaked me out. I regret that I finished it.


 Have you played the CHAPTER ONE? What do you want to say? 





It has that M1 vibe to it though - hovering outside Arrival
brought back memories, and fulfilled a longtime dream to boot...
This is an incredible scenario preview. I am quite impressed. 
It was, like, a longtime fantasy come true for this oul' M1-er
I completed this thing today. It's a serious nostalgia trip, and well worth the download.
I'm waiting for the finished version. This might turn out to be one of the "big" senarios.
I have only one serious complaint with this level; near the end, all the monsters froze on me.
Thye would take one initial swipe at me, and then just stand there while I punched them to death.
I think some work should be done on the Zone Borders...
It was pretty much that. I think there is tons of potential here. I'd like to see what's behind some of
those doors that you couldn't open before, etc. Let's find the door to the weapons room on
"Colony Ship..", or maybe what's beyond the airlocks on "Smells Like Napalm..." 
The best part was seeing the old Marathon including gloomy passageways, skeletons, old worn out, unmaintained equipment, etc. It gave the game a satisfying "spooky" feeling.¨
I'm looking forward to the complete scenario. The only negative, in my opinion, is the lack of a good operating automap. The semi-operable automap that was available caused me confusion as to where
space stopped and spaceship started when maneuvering outside the Marathon. Again, many Thanks.


 Now my opinion on RTM. Ok you probably saw my post on the map making forum.
And here is my take. It's very well done. The Vaccuum trick is great. In fact I literally hate being in a
vaccuum in Marathon, it freaks me out. Now for the textures, They were nice, but the Other space ship's textures really stood out for me. Because they were origonal. The maps making while supurbe has
me miffed. I really dont' like taking pre-existing maps and using them.
Using Arrival and Bigger Guns Near By was a turn off for me. Also using the MOWDON and
the Evil HUD display. Origonality rules!

 First, I'd like to say that you have done a great job with Return to Marathon thus far.
Playing the first level of the Marathon (Home, Sweet Home) brought back many, many memories
(as was probably intended). Now I will get to the point. I did find a small continuity flaw/error...

It's finally happened. Evil and TI are shot all to hell. I haven't even finished half of the demo level,
but I think I can safely say that Return to Marathon is the best scenario ever made. Vacuum sections!
A jet pack! Killer textures! The inside of Hanger 7A! The only thing that even comes close is Erodrome,
and I think RTM shows more promise. Get it, play it, rave!


The nostalgia factor was pretty high for me at first, but then I started to notice the ropy, poorly aligned texturing copied lovingly from the original M1 maps, plus the less than stellar texturing in the few new interior sections, and the nostalgia factor started to fade. And, then I just about gagged on my Michelob when I ran into the hovering VacBOB-bodied/Pfhor-headed baddies. A really lame art-hack...ick.
Also, someone needs to introduce the mapmaker to a Zone Border, as the engine was way overloaded with too many active monsters, and they all had a serious case of the stupids.
If I'm going to revisit the Marathon, I'd like to see it renvisioned and reinterpreted in a "modern" Mi way with all the map making techniques and tricks that have been developed over the years put to good use. Stitching together the first two levels of M1 didn't really do it for me much beyond an initial "wow, I remember that" feeling, and after that began to wane, things just started to feel kid of cheesy. I really hope the intent of this effort isn't just to rip-off, rust up, and rehash all the M1 maps I remember and so dearly love. That would just plain suck. The term art looked really top-notch though.


I agree! The atmosphere and mechanics are stunning, and the textures and rusted, smashed M1 objects
are eerily beautiful, and it succeeced in freaking me out at 4 in the afternoon.
Also very impressive was the spacewalk effect. It bears the mark of a truly great map trick:within 7 seconds of leaving the airlock I knew exactly how it was done, and I was still amazed beyond words, and each time I went into the silent, airless space around the Marathon I was amazed and frightened by the looming ship. I didn't really like the Pfhor-Bobs though, they looked a little silly. Maybe if the terminal graphics were improved and the green outline was removed (and hunter or trooper helmets added?)
they'd be creepier. Still looks like an awesome scenario!

I just want to tell you that your scenario preview "Return to Marathon" is the single best scenario I have ever played. You've managed to redo the levels "Arrival" and "Bigger Guns Nearby" and make them very exciting again. I love the textures, attention to detail (nice job with the decrepid piles of weapons), and those ambient sounds of wasps and burning fighters that make you jump.
Keep up the good work, and I hope to see much more from you!
Two things: First of all, great, GREAT, G R E A T map!!!! Awesome, beautiful addictive.
I've downloaded over 100 megs worth of non-bungie maps/scenarios over the last couple of years, and this one beats them all! Not because of the action (EVIL takes that award!), but because of the incredible
feeling I got, after having played (many times) M1, M2 and MI, when I recognized the very first starting
point of M1, with the dimmed out terminal, and the chill I got in my spine when I heard the familiar
Pfhor sound as two fighters were activated. Thank you. You probably have a lot of work ahead of you, but you're on to something really, really good.

 Sean Morris

 RTM was the best scenario i have ever played. It blows Ti and Evil to bits. I love that spooky M1 effect of "what's around that corner?" I have been waiting for a return to m1 for a long time, and I shave even converted all the original textures but i lack the forge expertise to make the levels. I love the way you converted the first two levels of M1 and carefuly textured them to match the originals. I still cant figure out how you did that. I only have a few complaints. First is the pfhorBobs. Why do they have that green outline? Second is the smearing effect on some of the textures. I know how to fix that if you like, since i have dealt with this problem before when trying to convert textures.
Third is the marathon. When you step out of the airlock of your ship you cant even see the marathon yet.
The marathon was made from Mars's moon, so wouldnt you see it immediately? I give it over all a "9".
I hope to see the first chapter soon.

 Lynn O. Hanks

 I'd just like to say Return to Marathon looks like it has a lot of good potential (big-time).
I really like the idea of reliving the Marathon experience, the one you got when you first played through Marathon 1. I think Marathon 1 was the most enjoyable single player game of all 3 because it was fresh, scary, awe-inspiring story, and just fun. I think an ideal scenario is one that takes all the best stuff from Marathon 1 and the really fun action id software created in their games and combines them into
one heck of a scenario. Keep doing what you do best

 Jane Davison

 Hey, I'm not testing, I'm PLAYING!
Tonio, this is stunning! Handsome! Beautiful! Innovative! I'm having a blast and not
sure my "testing" will bring anything to light, but yes, I am a Beta Tester &
always like to forward my comments, opinions when asked. So far so good.
And some funny stuff! That switch on Map 001 - hit once okay, hit twice
oops, Hull Breach Hull Breach! Too hilarious...

 Blake Noble

  I absolutely loved the demo, and I'm itchin for the complete thing.


 Hi Antonio: Still waitin' for that scenario!!!!
Don't rush too much, but don't make your fans wait too much either!!!!

 Mark Newland

 Just started Return to Marathon. Great work.
Will there be an Aleph version?

 Chris Onslow

 I was wondering if you had completed the scenario yet and, if you did, where to download it.
I really enjoyed the preview!


 Hey, I just downloaded and played the demo, and I tell you, I was absolutely amazed!
Keep up the good work!




Thanks to the people without whom this scenario
might not have been possible:

·Bungie Software Marathon 1 Team
·Bungie Software/Doubleaught Software Maraton Infinity Team
·MMMG (Marathon Map Makers Guild) - All sorts of indispensable help
·Charles Lechasseur - Indispensable Software
·Mike Trinder - Indispensable Software
·Kirill Levchenko - Indispensable Software
·Jeremy Parsons, Dan Jonson, Evan Harper - Indispensable Software
·Bo Lindberg - Indispensable Software
·Bungie software - Indispensable Software :-)
·Others that I am certainly forgetting (excuses)


Thanks to people in whose work I have based much
of my own work or from whom I have gotten ideas:

·Bungie Software Marathon 1 Team
·Bungie Software/Doubleaught Software Maraton Infinity Team
·Richard Mikat - Art for the N'hur Sprite
·Candace Sheriff - Shebob's Texture Factory (Textures)
·Nardo Team - Marathon Tempus Irae (Textures and images)
·Evil Team - Marathon Evil (Textures, images and shapes)
·Michael O'Brien - Star Trek (Textures)
·Loren Petrich - Aye Mak Sicur 3D (Image)
·Kevin Stone - Star Trek (Textures)
·David Schutz - Giger Shapes (Textures)
·Stephen Kraut - Texture Installer (Textures)
·MMMG - Devil in a Blue Dress (Textures and images)
·John Hancock - An AI Called Wanda (Images)
·James Hastings-Trew - Meggido (Textures)
·Frigidman - Siege of Nor'Korh (Textures)
·Marcos Pinheiro - Travel (Textures and images)
·Cris Sena - Codename Genesis - (Textures & Images)
·Tony Smith - Origin of Species series - (Images)
·Craig Mullins - Chapter Screens Images
·Marco Patrito - intro Image of demo
·Frigidman (shape of EVIL's Rifle)
·Sean Morris
·Arx Immanis
·Courier 11
·Excalibur Morgana's Revenge from MMMG