When it was first released more than twenty years ago, Doom changed the face of gaming forever. Until then, most action titles had been 2D side-scrolling affairs, with recycled platform elements and a limited range of movement.
In 1992, a year before Doom was distributed as shareware (in part, at least), Wolfenstein 3D hit the market; this first-person Nazi-busting shooter was revolutionary, using technology still fundamental to FPS games today. While id Software worked on both games, Doom was far and away the greater success, surviving controversy (over its strong violence and satanic imagery) to become one of the most well-loved franchises in the gaming world.
On May 13th, id Software will release a reboot simply titled Doom (originally known as Doom 4), which promises to update the series with new features and today’s lush visuals. There’s lots to be excited about, for hardcore fans of the franchise and newcomers alike …
Amazing Weapon Customization Options
A major part of the Doom series (and of any FPS shooter) is the range of weaponry at your disposal: what tools can you waste enemies with, and how good are they?
Well, id Software is looking to make their new Doomguy’s loadout all the more impressive, with the return of some well-loved death-machines. The infamous BFG 9000 is back, as is the super shotgun, while the chainsaw can also be whipped out once more for some slicing and dicing.
What’s really exciting, though, is the amount of customization available for these weapons. Different aspects can be tweaked and boosted using various mods; this should add plenty of diversity to the selection of weapons on-hand, and make players feel as if their loadout is distinctive (rather than simply having the exact same gear as every other player).
Certain mods also work more effectively against specific enemies, so customizing a weapon before fighting particular demons should become second nature.
Awesome Glory Kills Give you Time to Think
For veteran Doom fans, the announcement of Glory Kills might have created a little anxiety. Was this a tacked-on QTE that would slow the game’s pace right down and require frustrating button-bashing? This is understandable, given how annoying QTEs can actually be, but this new feature appears to be anything but.
Glory Kills are gory melee attacks that give players the chance to gain a few seconds of respite (and it may well be literally that, with id Software assuring they don’t slow the action down too much) when surrounded by swarms of devilish enemies.
Glory Kills also cause enemies to drop helpful items for you, giving you some much-needed aid in touch situations. When caught in the middle of a bloody brawl, triggering a Glory Kill will give players the chance to quickly strategize, perhaps figuring out a way ahead or picking an enemy to take down next.
Randomly-Generating Bosses (Possibly)
As amazing as a game may be during its first playthrough, knowing exactly how levels will unfold takes away some of the joy in subsequent replays. Doom looks set to address this and, hopefully, remedy it with the inclusion of randomly-generating bosses.
So far, this appears to be applicable only to certain areas, but the risk of a super-demon spawning without knowing which you’ll face will bring added tension to repeat plays. This has yet to be confirmed as a definite feature of the new game, but if so, it’s a smart move by id software to keep the experience fresh and exciting for single players, ensuring there’s more to come back to outside of the multi-player mode.
Any seasoned PC gamer will be familiar with modding, whether playing those made by other people or creating their own. Building custom maps and tweaking in-game features helps to enhance a game’s replay value, and allows gamers to embrace their own creativity.
Doom will give console-owners a rare chance to experiment with their own ideas, customizing and building unique maps, modes, and objectives. The new SnapMap feature is a simple interface, with which rooms and parts of corridors (‘modules’) can be snapped together to craft levels with a minimum of fuss.
Once a basic foundation has been laid down, gamers can start to add the other layers bit by bit, decorating the rooms while adding obstacles and even enemies. Tweaking game modes and multi-player content should also be fairly easy, ensuring the modding tools are as accessible for newcomers as for pros.
A Huge Range of Multi-player Content
Multi-player modes are integral to today’s FPS titles, with online play now a major draw for many buyers. Doom will feature plenty of multi-player modes to enjoy, but perhaps the most exciting is Warpath.
This mode is akin to the classic ‘king of the hill’ set-up, but adds a bold new twist: the capture point at the mode’s core isn’t fixed – it moves around the map throughout the match, on a set journey. This sense of constant motion keeps the action fast-paced and demands players stay on their toes, but extra challenge is added by a power-up that transforms players into heavily-armed demons.
Are there any Doom fans out there who actually WOULDN’T want to play as a Hell-beast? Nope. Thought not.
Another nice new feature are Hack Modules. These are unlocked through Doom’s progression system, and offer one-use skills (such as being able to spot power-ups when others can’t), providing players with their own personal aids against opponents.