Troubled Waters is a Capture the Flag conversion of Q3DM8, Brimstone Abbey, and is a personal favourite among the original Capture the Flag series. The Abbey is one of the less popular deathmatch levels in the game, but this arena doesn't suffer the same fate.
A short description of the conception and structure of the level follows from it's creator, former id software level designer Paul Jaquays':
“Troubled Waters was built from architectural sections of Brimstone Abbey. A central water tank (with water tunnels that connect deep into the enemy base area) separates the two “rotated” sides. Rotation means that both bases are identical copies of each other … not mirrored.”
The map consists of two large underground cathedrals seperated by a pool of water. Each has a portico at it's entrance and a small defence platform with a railgun in perfect sniping position to pick off would-be attackers jumping the moat using the acceleration pads. The heavy columns of the portico are flanked by mezzanine walkways that encircle the water seperating the two bases, providing plenty of opportunities for attack and defence, making these areas the scene of constant battles.
Attackers wanting to avoid the commotion can run through the basements and swim throught a network of large underground drainage pipes that lead to the central tank, picking up a number of powerful items along the way including a megahealth, red armour, rocket launcher and medkits, depending on which versions of the level is being played.
An alternate version of the level was created for Quake III: Team Arena as MPQ3CTF2: More Trouble with modifications to these basement areas and underground passages and support for multiple team gametypes, but as with Dueling Keeps it was the Quake III original that was chosen for Quake Live, where it reappears under it's original name as QZCTF2.
The rafters of the flag rooms/cathedrals contain small gratings that can support the weight of several gladiators, and can serve not only as excellent defense positions but also offer the closest feasible hiding spot to wait while teammates retrieve the flag. A series of health globes rest on the gratings that can be used to heal yourself should you come under attack here or need to recover on entry. To reach these rafters take the bounce pad the leads to the flag and use air control to sway your movement to the left or right as you hit the zenith of the movement arc.
The grenade launcher corridors at ground level in the base overlooking the cathedrals from Brimstone Abbey also remain, allowing for base defense and alternate modes of attack. The grenade launchers work well both for attackers and defenders, allowing defense teams to rain down supporting fire on attackers and attackers to cover themselves as they make their escape.
CTF2 is one of the greatest Capture the Flag arenas in id's Quake III level set, and offers great strategic opportunities and replay value.
There are no secrets in this level.
Weapons: Shotgun, Grenade Launcher, Rocket Launcher, Railgun, Plasmagun.
Power-ups: Megahealth, Medkit.