By Ferry "Sadhonker" Adams on April 22, 2016
Yes ladies and gentlemen, sometimes I manage to surprise myself. While browsing my previous timemachine reviews, I noticed that a game was missing that I played for hours on end. So why isn’t it on the list? I actually couldn’t tell you. I think it must have escaped my attention somehow... an oversight, soon to be rectified! As you might recall from our last encounter, I was working without a crew. I can tell you that this is really exhausting and not quite my cup of tea. Luckily, I had a grand idea that would solve all my problems.
I took my timemachine for a spin into the future. And not just a few years, but centuries into the great unknown! Once there, I managed to secure a small army of robots to replace my time travelling crew. And the best part is that I got them really cheap; all I paid for them is a small bottle of Coca Cola I just happen to have with me for when I got thirsty along the way. Apparently, the recipe for this thirst-quenching liquid had been lost over time, resulting in the global Cola Revolution of July 4320. So you can imagine that a man who has a bottle in his possession will dominate the planet or, in my case, be the proud owner of more robots than First Emperor of China had Terracotta warriors.
So, with my company running smoothly and without flaw (and, more importantly, completely without workers that complain or have ideas of their own), I hand-picked a select group of my newly acquired employees and sent them back to 1993 in pursuit of the awesome game I somehow seem to have missed on my travels up till now. If you were to ask me how this came to pass, than the answer would be: “I couldn’t tell you” I think it’s just a matter of one of those things that just happen for no apparent reason. But, now it’s finally time to make up for my mistake! It’s time to battle the forces of Hell; it’s time to pick up our guns and play DOOM!
When Doom was released in 1993 by ID Software and GT Interactive, it revolutionized the entire first-person shooter genre overnight. While ID Software’s Wolfenstein 3D had already popularized the genre a year before, their new title, DOOM, made this popularity sky-rocket like never before. It seemed that, all of a sudden, everybody wanted to don the uniform of a Space Marine and take on the forces of Hell, who have overrun a military facility on Mars. In this facility, the Union Aerospace Corporation is secretly testing teleportation between Mars’ two moons, Phobos and Deimos. Of course, as we’ve come to expect from scientists, they manage to completely screw up the entire situation and cause armies of Hell’s minions to flood out of the newly created gateway. Man, don’t you just hate it when the Legions of Hell ruin your afternoon?!
So, just what did DOOM do differently from Wolfenstein? Well, for starters, its engine was quite a bit more advanced than the original Wolfenstein engine. This enabled the developers to make use of more realistic ‘3D’ graphics. It let them add fully textured ceilings and floors to the levels and even let them go so far as to add more interactive elements to the levels. Floors rose to become staircases, enabling the use of dynamic multi-story levels. Apart from all this technical wizardry, DOOM’s theme was also more wild and exorbitant than Wolfenstein’s, and people seemed to like it... A LOT!
Another thing that attracted people to playing DOOM, was its cast array of weaponry. Like in other FPS games, you start off with a pistol but quickly, you’ll get your hands on the more powerful stuff, like the shotgun, the chaingun, the rocket launcher, a plasma rifle and, the best gun of all: the BFG9000. As varied as your weaponry is, so are your enemies. You start off by basically killing the grunts, like possessed UAC personnel and a couple of imps. But pretty soon you’ll be knee-deep in the dead, fighting off all kinds of demonic scum, most of them with faces only a mother could love. A blind mother, that is...
You press on until you reach the shores of Hell, where you dispatch more of these vile creatures and turn the whole thing into one bloody inferno. But whatever you do, there is one thing that thee must never do. Do not lose sight of thy health and ammo and make sure thee don’t get thy flesh consumed. And no, I did not just lose my mind, I was merely trying to (inconspicuously) get the titles of all four of DOOM’s episodes into this review. Oh well, you win some, you lose some. And subtlety was never my strong point anyway.
What I was good at, was playing video games for hours on end, and DOOM let me do just that without ever getting bored. IT was a high-speed adrenaline rush that kept you busy for longer than any other game until then. It’s graphics, it’s graphical content (that instigated somewhat of a controversy at the time), it’s theme; all these things made DOOM to what it is: one hell of a good game! And, let’s not forget the awesome soundtrack that came with it. Being partial to metal and rock music, I absolutely loved it! Even when you’re not that into that genre of music, you’ll have to admit that the music of the game suits the content on screen. And how can you not love the unforgettable SFX of the doors in DOOM opening and closing? I rest my case, your honour. No further questions!
All in all, DOOM had everything going for it: the cool graphics and setting, a wild story, gratuitous violence and more gallons of digital blood than there are bottles of beer at my favorite bar (and that’s saying a lot!) It used to (and, come to think about it, still does) keep me busy for great lengths of time. Although the game looks dated by today’s standards, it still doesn’t look half bad and still plays like a good game should. DOOM managed to spawn quite a few sequels in its time and even got the modding community riled up because it let them create their own content for the game. And even now, 23 years later, DOOM is still going strong! This year, ID Software and Bethesda Softworks have taken it upon themselves to create a brand new DOOM game; the first in 12 years! And, instead of calling it DOOM: something or the other (insert secondary title here), they decided to just call it DOOM. So, the circle is complete and we’re right back where we started... and I like it just fine here!
Unlike Monkey, Trip cannot fight enemies, so make sure she’s safe before exploring your surroundings. As a last resort, she can fire a kind of EMP blast, but seeing as how this needs to recharge, she’s unlikely to be able to use it a second time before dying. And remember; if she dies, you die, so do your very best to keep her alive. While she might not be able to fight, Trip is not completely useless. She does possess certain abilities that make her useful when in a jam. She can project a decoy that enemies focus on, enabling you to sneak past behind their backs. She can be thrown over gaps that can’t be jumped and toggle switches or other devices. She can also scan the area for mines or other hazards and unlock doors, using her wristband computer.
Well, that just about wraps up things for me today. Finally, the game that got away has been dealt with. And now for these demons crawling around here, let me just deal with them real quick. So, until next time, this is Ferry “Sadhonker” Adams, saying: until next time and always, always be on the lookout for a demon invasion!
ID Software & GT Interactive