DOOM³ (Windows)

ESRB Rating
Critic Score
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
User Score
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Dr. Dude (3)
Written on  :  Nov 05, 2005
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful

write a review of this game
read more reviews by Dr. Dude
read more reviews for this game


Doom is Reborn

The Good

In the history of the first person shooter genre, the one game that stands out more than any other as an icon is id Software's classic 1993 game, Doom. The game that truly defined the future of videogames, Doom was both famous and infamous for its violent action, demonic images and constant, non-stop shooting of the denizens of hell. The game's sequel, Doom II: Hell on Earth, was effectively more of an expansion pack, with new episodes that increased the monster count per-screen to levels only recently matched and beaten by games like Serious Sam or Painkiller.

Both games were well-deserving of their status as classics, and it obviously was regarded with both joy and immediate skepticism when id Software revealed that it was creating an all-new sequel. A mediocre game would never survive if it had the title "Doom".... Doom 3 ''had'' to live up to its lofty expectations while still bringing back the old-school, shoot 'em up gameplay as the original.

Just the opening of Doom 3 is like the beginning of a roller coaster, as you slowly arch your way to the peak; getting hints from everywhere that something is wrong on the UAC facility on Mars. You advance deeper and deeper down, immediately given a mission to find a scientist in the lower levels. And when you do....

All hell breaks loose. And this is when the game really kicks off.

While it might be hard for some players to believe today now, playing the original Doom back in its time was a terrifying experience, sucking you into the game's universe like no other before it. Doom 3 succeeds amazingly in bringing back this effect while retelling the original games story. While the monster count isn't anywhere near the prior games amounts, the monsters now will jump out from roofs, doors, anywhere and eventually begin teleporting in around you, killing one leading to the appearance of another. The sense of paranoia in this game is extremely well-created, as you constantly look around desperately in corners, vents and examine areas with your flashlight. A lot of this is due in no small part to the game's sound effects and graphics--- while usually I'm not really interested in cutting-edge graphics, its hard not to admit that the realism of the look in Doom 3 is a large part of the scare-factor.

The hellspawn that are going to be on the receiving end of your shotgun are all the same demons you remember from the originals, albeit reimagined for the new game. Imps, Hellknights, Pinky Demons and Lost Souls are all once again stalking the metal halls of the Mars base, the only notable absence being the Baron of Hell. The same weapons as the original games make a comeback too, from the chainsaw to the BFG. In addition to these are new favorites monsters like the Cherub, an undeniably creepy human baby with moth wings and legs, and the "Soul Cube", a new weapon which along with being fun to use becomes very important to the plot and climax.

The majority of the game is in the Aliens-esque UAC facility, which while eventually become slightly repetitive looking is extremely well-created, with background machinery and computer screens everywhere adding to the believability. Through these levels the gameplay is classic Doom, as the main goal is still the traditional "shoot everything that moves", bringing back the feel of the old Doom games in a way no ripoffs or imitations ever have. But the standout level of the game is when the player finally uses the teleporter to plummet straight down into Hell, which probably should have been saved to be the last level of the game because of the way it takes all the tension built up in the game beforehand to the boiling point.

The Bad

Doom 3 could have used several different types of levels to break up a little bit of the slight monotony that going through the UAC halls eventually caused. The few times you were outside on the Martian landscape were terrific--- that could have had potential as a level. Also, the scripted sequences of enemies jumping out at you should have stayed more like they were in the earlier sections of the game, instead of the way they spawn in from hell later on.

The redesigns of the monsters were inspired, but many of the demons were somewhat underused. The Pinky Demon in particular should have appeared more. However, the variety of enemy types does make up for this to some extent.

The double-barreled shotgun, many people's favorite weapon in Doom II, was unfortunately left out as well, but thankfully it returns in the games expansion, Resurrection of Evil.

The Bottom Line

Bringing back all the visceral action, violence and hellish imagery and creatures of the original Doom brought to life like never before, Doom 3 is a proud sequel to its lofty predecessors.