I think I should probably start off this review with a apology because of my complete and utter lack of posts on here and I vow on my honour that I will do better so with that in mind I have for you guys and girls a review for Doom and yes I do mean the totally badass 2016 version.
So lets get the usual things out the way first, Doom was developed by id Software and published by Bethesda Softworks and the game was released worldwide on Windows, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on May 13, 2016 and it is a brilliant mix of both old and new.
I honestly can’t say much about Doom that hasn’t already been said over the years by various people and unless you have been sadly living under a rock for decades somehow thus missing out on the sheer amazing that is the Doom series I will sum it up…Doom has badass demons, big f**king guns, gallons of blood and a heavy metal soundtrack and is one of my all time favourite games ever.
I am not joking on that fact because I plan on showing my grandkids this game one day but future grandkids aside let’s talk plot and for a game that pretty much involves killing everything with a pulse Doom has a pretty good one and it goes like this.
Doom is set in a research facility on Mars owned by the Union Aerospace Corporation or UAC for short and the researchers at said facility were trying to find a way to solve an energy crisis on Earth and they attempt to do this by building something they called the “Argent Tower” which somehow was able to not only siphon the very energy from Hell itself but allow travel to and from there and well it doesn’t end well.
Demons invade the place after one of its scientists, Olivia Pierce, made a pact with them and opened a portal to Hell which is bad, very, very bad so in desperation Samuel Hayden who is the director of the facility (who just happens to be am ultra cool looking robot because brain cancer) sets you free from a demonic coffin he found on an expedition and tasks you with stopping the outbreak the only way you know how….killing everything in sight.
Doom has a rather straight forward plot and it isn’t exactly filled with mind blowing revelations but hey it’s Doom so that’s alright because its not like the originals were famous for their story telling prowess, most of us played Doom for the fast paced, demon killing greatness and the sick metal soundtrack and with the 2016 instalment we get the amazingness that the series is known for and a story and speaking of demon killing greatness let’s talk gameplay.
Doom 2016 ditches the dark, tight corridors of Doom 3 in favour of going back to the tried and true gameplay style of the original Doom and Doom II meaning if you want to live you have got to be fast on your feet and downright brutal in combat.
This isn’t Call of Duty or Halo where you can hide behind a wall in cover for a minute or two for your health to be topped up, instead you must collect health and armour pick-ups by killing enemies and finding in the game world much like Wolfenstein: The New Order and in addition to these things is the Glory Kill mechanic.
Now “Glory Kills” are a new thing in Doom that I would imagine was inspired by the flashy executions in SGtMarkIV’s Brutal Doom mod but long story short, after enough damage has been dealt to an enemy, they will begin to glow and allow the player to perform a quick and rather gory melee takedown.
Above is a short clip I recorded of Doom’s Arcade mode which I will cover later and in it are a few glory kills on a few of the weaker enemies in the game, more specifically the Imps, the Possessed and the Hell Guards and while the above gameplay isn’t amazing it is the best I can do with the five minute record time on my console.
Doom 2016 places a heavy emphasis on these “Glory Kills” because doing them to weakened enemies rewards the player with extra health, ammo and after getting an upgrade, armour so if you want to survive, you have to be aggressive but not too aggressive like I was in the above video.
Since Doom 2016 got rid of the tight corridors from Doom 3, most of the game’s levels are filled with multiple pathways and open areas like the original games and this allow players to explore and find various collectibles and secrets throughout the levels which is incredibly important.
Another thing that was added in Doom 2016 was the inclusion of a progression system which at first glance seems like an odd addition to the series but it this case it works rather well and it actually gives the player incentive to find collectibles and some of them really help you progress and help you play the game your own way.
There are Field Drones, Elite Guards, Argent Cells and Rune Trials and they all benefit the player in numerous ways when found, for example the Field Drones once found will give you a “weapon point” which lets you unlock alternate modes of fire for your weapons such as explosive shots and a burst fire mode for the Combat Shotgun as seen in the image below.
All Doom’s iconic weapons return in Doom 2016 including the chainsaw and the legendary BFG 9000 and apart from those two, all of them can be modified and upgraded which is a really good thing because some of the upgrades make a huge difference especially the weapon mods on the Gauss Cannon which is an absolute monster.
Moving on from the Doom Guy’s impressive arsenal you can also upgrade Doom Guy himself and you can do that by two methods, one method involves finding special tokens from dead Elite Guard marines throughout the levels and some of them are hidden rather well so if you want to fully upgrade Doom Guy level exploration is the key to success.
Another way to upgrade Doom Guy is to find Argent Energy containers which are spheres of demonic energy that he can use to upgrade his maximum health, armour and ammunition and like the Elite Guards the containers are once again hidden so exploration of the environment is once again key to making Doom Guy pretty much unstoppable.
Last but not least is the Rune Trials which are a rather cool addition to Doom in my opinion because it adds another level of depth to the game, long story short, once and interacted with, the Rune will transport the player to a separate arena where they have to complete a combat challenge that, when successfully completed, will reward the player with a Rune that has a specific ability.
In the above image in Rune Slot 1, there is the a rune called “Armoured Offensive” and it is rather simple, every Glory Kill you do drops armour which is useful because armour is as important as ammo in this game, in Rune Slot 2 is a Rune called “Dazed and Confused” which increases the amount of time that enemies are well dazed and confused making them easier to Glory Kill and this works wonders when used in conjunction with “Armoured Offensive”.
There are 12 runes as you can see from the image above and all of them can be upgraded by completing a challenge making them more effective so I recommend trying to upgrade the Runes as soon as you get them because they will help you big time in the long run so now lets talk graphics and sound.
Graphics wise Doom 2016 is a great looking game, the levels and character models are really well done and while there isn’t much colour in Doom 2016 it works rather well because I doubt hell is the most colourful place, the animation is also done really well because the bits and pieces of slain demons end up everywhere in this game and it would be rather dumb if they didn’t.
Doom 2016’s sounds are well done, the weapons themselves sound amazing and the voice acting that is there in the game is also well done and if you were expecting to hear what the Doom Guy sounds like than you will be disappointed because he prefers to let his guns do his talking for him.
Doom 2016 has a great soundtrack composed by Mick Gordon with additional contributions by Richard Devine that respects the original soundtrack while updating it for a modern audience which worked out well in their favour because the soundtrack would later win the Best Music / Sound Design award at The Game Awards 2016 but anyway the soundtrack was released in September 2016 for purchase and it contains 31 tracks from the game which is over 2 hours of brilliantly composed music so next on the agenda is replay value.
Doom 2016 has quite a bit of replay value which is a great thing, there are 51 achievements worth a total of 1330 achievement points and most of them are rather easy to earn, there is the 13 level single player campaign that is roughly around 13 hours long and there are five difficulty levels and they are I’m Too Young To Die, Hurt Me Plenty, Ultra Violence, Nightmare and finally the Ultra Nightmare difficulty level which features permadeath meaning if you die on Ultra Nightmare your save will be lost once you die, yeah that sounds like absolute hell to me too.
Single player campaign aside Doom also has an arcade mode where you get points for killing enemies and picking up, health, armour, and score-boosting items and consecutive kills will increase a score multiplier that has a max capacity of x32 and you receive bonus points for things like head shots and glory kills.
Each level of Doom’s campaign can be played on any difficulty with all of your power-ups unlocked and each of these stage levels have a point based reward system meaning you can snag bronze, silver and gold medals and believe me while the Arcade Mode is simple, this mode can be quite intense on harder difficulties and I personally enjoy this mode quite a lot and am still working towards getting gold medals on all the stages.
Now I haven’t had the chance to test out the multiplayer aspect of Doom 2016 because I am a year late to the party so the damn thing takes forever to find a match so I included the official multiplayer trailer above for you guys and girls to check out.
Doom has six multiplayer modes and while I haven’t played them they are the following; Team DeathMatch, Soul Harvest, Freeze Tag, Warpath, Domination, and “Clan Arena” so there is a bit of variety here and I will explain the modes individually now and I will start with Soul Harvest first because we all know the rules of Team Deathmatch.
The easiest way I can describe Soul Harvest is Kill Confirmed from the Call of Duty games because the rules are the same but you need to collect the souls of the players you killed instead of dog tags which sounds simple enough but this mode has demon runes in it and the player who picks up the demon rune gets to keep it for the duration of the match and if they kill someone as the demon, they drop two souls instead of one which is quite handy but if the demon dies, it drops five souls, while someone else will take over as the demon.
Freeze Tag is pretty much the childhood game except with plasma weapons and shot guns thrown into the mix and well rather than killing your foes, enemies are instead frozen in place in a block of ice and victory is earned by the first team to completely freeze the opposing team but if there are still unfrozen players on both sides when time runs out, the team with the most active players will win the round.
Warpath is King of The Hill but there is a single capture point that moves around the map along a set (and clearly marked) pathway so if you want to win you have to haul ass to keep yourselves on that moving point while stopping the enemy from doing the same and if that’s not hard enough this mode also has those delightful demon runes.
Points are accrued whenever your team controls the capture point and victory is earned by the first team to reach a pre-set score, or by the team with the most points when time runs out so it is pretty much a tug of war between the two teams.
Domination is the same as other games with the standard three zone format and you have to capture the points and defend them but since this is Doom the demon runes play a key role and here is how, during a match, the rune will spawn randomly throughout the arena, and its appearance on the map will be announced to all players, giving everyone a chance to race for the rune.
Since Doom’s demons are more powerful than the standard soldier (as they are in all modes by the way), the leading team will want the rune to stop the other team from catching up because if the losing team does get the demon rune first, they have a strong shot at forcefully capturing a point and be able to hold their ground more effectively
The final multiplayer mode for Doom is called Clan Arena and is a game of elimination where the rule is simple, the last team standing wins and this sounds easy but here is where it gets tough…all pick-ups are removed from the map, and players won’t be able to restore their health or armour.
That’s right boys and girls in this mode once you’re dead, you’re dead and cannot respawn which is good and also demons aren’t available during this mode because that would honestly be hell…no pun intended and like the other game modes victory is earned by the team that fully eliminates all its foes – or by the team with the most remaining players when time runs out.
The final mode for Doom is the SnapMap mode and this mode is my personal favourite and perhaps the coolest because it is a full level creator where you can create your own Doom levels with the in game assets and play thousands of custom made levels made by the Doom community and there are some really good levels in this mode.
I would explain how the SnapMap mode works but I know I would end up making it sound far more complicated than it is and well there are videos on YouTube that explain the mode far better than I could along with tutorials when you start the mode.
The trailer above was made with actual levels from that mode and I have played nearly all of them and they are some of the best user made levels in the creator, some are one level deals while others are multi level campaigns with their own unique stories, others are multiplayer game types, hell someone made a Doom version of the zombies mode from CoD and it is actually pretty damn good and there are thousands of levels in SnapMap Mode meaning there are potentially hundreds of hours worth of content here.
So we are at the end of the review and there isn’t much I can really say other than Doom is a great purchase if you are a fan of the original games, a fan of first person shooters and heavy metal, it has a great single player campaign that is rather refreshing, a solid multiplayer mode that is quite fun when and if you have friends to play with and a gold mine of player made content in the form of the SnapMap and SnapHub so it is well worth the money.
Doom is one of my favourite games from 2016 because it hides its complexity under the guise of being a straight forward demon killing extravaganza and to a extent that is true but it is also a game that combines the best aspects of old and new, you have old school level design and gameplay with a modern upgrade and that is why Doom 2016 is well worth spending money on and is a great addition to any collection.
I think that does it for this review and I do apologise if it isn’t as good as my older ones, I have been having vision problems recently which have been causing me far too many headaches to get things done as well I want to so I guess a trip to the opticians is in the books for me soon but moving on from real life problems I will now end this review so please like, comment down below and share with the hashtag #Slay3rNation so other people can read it and I will see you in the next post