There are three video game featuring Space Marine's that I really think could be classified as “Famous”. Master Chief from HALO, Space Marines from StarCraft, and the granddaddy of them all, the man simply known as “DOOM Guy”. Originally released in 1993, DOOM has been the template for First Person Shooters (FPS) ever since. DOOM Guy has also been the standard template for Space Marines in video games. Non-talkative, deadly, always angry, and has no time for explanations.
DOOM has always been close to my heart as it was one of those games, I still continue to load into and play the original two. So when I was told there would be no early press reviews I was very scared that this game was not up to the task of fulfilling that nostalgic hole in my heart. This was only reinforced by the less than stellar multiplayer beta weeks before its official release. Though DOOM has and always will be a single player in my mind. The lack of early reviews forces me to quickly play through and not enjoy everything the game has to offer, and then make a review. This is not ideal for reviewers and critics.
Before we jump into the game, I want to reflect on something that game developers just simply skip over or make you go into a .ini and change to get what you want. That is the settings page, these options are just glorious. Native support for 21:9 is a huge bonus, but it gets better. Many games have v-sync on/off, DOOM offers V-sync on/off/adaptive so those of you running Nvidia’s G-Sync or AMD’s Free-Sync can easily use this option now instead of hoping that turning off v-sync is enough. They also show that they want to remain neutral in the hardware wars by simply calling it adaptive. There are so many options and the rank from Low, Medium, High, Ultra, and Nightmare. I am currently using my wife's computer, as I tore my computer apart to find a water leak, which has a i7 4790k and a GTX 980. I actually got an error saying that I couldn’t change a setting because it doesn’t have 5gb of VRAM, and that prevented me from doing so to prevent crashes. There is just so many options in the settings.
There are 5 difficulty settings, and normally I do reviews on medium difficulty and have a easy time doing so and taking screenshots. This game gave me trouble trying to stay alive and take a screenshot in the middle of action. Those that think games are getting too easy will be pleased on the difficulty I believe. Though I have not played at Ultra-Nightmare setting yet so I’m not sure what to expect on that difficulty.
DOOM starts off right with DOOM Guy waking up looking at a rune, and you can already tell he is angry. While other FPS games will start with 5 minutes of exposition of what happened, you start with a pistol and a kill count of 4 Possessed Ones within the first 15 seconds. This instantly felt right, no backstory, no dialogue on the history of DOOM. You simply start enraged that hell is back, and start cracking skulls. I already had those warm fuzzies about this game. This strongly reminds me of the first games where literally you start in a unknown place and just start shooting baddies. The pistol was surprisingly weak and made me worried that they were trying to make it difficult by simply lower stats of your character and guns. This is not the case, only the starting pistol has infinite ammo and you get an instant upgrade in the form of a shotgun within the first 5 minutes of the game.
That isn’t to say there isn’t a storyline, there is. Usually it is done in very short time, to keep you in the mindset of crush and smash, there are instances of random holograms saying 3-4 sentences and then moving on. It gets the job done but it’s short, simple and to the point like any DOOM game should be. The story is light and the action is deep… in blood.
The graphics are outstanding, just look at the rock where behind the helmet, the runes are carved in but faded, the gloves have different textures between the wires, leather, metal and plastic pieces. Enemies are well designed and unique, they have a firm presence that they are from hell. These aren’t even the highest level of graphics, I can’t wait to see DOOM on my fixed computer. Taking a look outside gives me chills out how the environment looks, constant wind moving the red sands and seeing research centers in the distance. The cliffs give a sense of danger at the ragged edges sticking out. These are some of the best graphics I’ve played in some time.
Another concern is that DOOM would censor a lot of the more bloody and gruesome aspects out of the game as the game's history has been a source of controversy. I am glad to report that this is not the case. The above picture is a once clean room after a single fight. Causing this much mayhem is an art form, and to make that much blood is a skill no one should have. The guts and gore are plenty and overfilling. The animations during melee are very fast and were well implemented. Glory Kills to a demon when they are flashing after some damage reward you with health packs, thus allowing you to continually heals as you destroy the enemies in your path.
The secrets are no longer little tiny differences in wall details but levers and more puzzles that lead to anything from a unique weapon and armor upgrades to passage to the old style game that can be played later on from the main menu. This gives a unique twist on the secrets and Easter eggs, as before it was just a gun a level earlier or extra ammo/health packs. These secrets are well hidden and sometimes require to backtrack to find them, due to you doing something like turning on the power which opens a door. I can see people losing their minds finding all the secrets.
DOOM brings back my childhood in a morbid way. The gameplay is not just a scare game, or a boring FPS but a blend of both filled with lots and lots of violence. I highly recommend that anyone that played the old DOOMS or feel their mature enough to play this game to pick it up when it comes into your price range. It is a game if you buy you will not regret and are bound to have many many hours of fun hunting down secrets and punching demons in the head. I wouldn’t change a thing, the game feels right, it plays right, and it looks right. I always nitpick at things on all the games I play. Fallout 4 had aging graphics and awful graphic settings, ARK:Survival Evolved had repetitive game play. This has so many graphic settings it’s sure to bring a smile to your face, the graphics are awesome, and the gameplay is just a ton violence fun. This is easily a game of the year candidate already.
RIP AND TEAR!