Critic Reviews add missing review
Average score: 90% (based on 31 ratings)
Average score: 4.0 out of 5 (based on 356 ratings with 25 reviews)
Doom is a game, made in 1993. It was groundbreaking in every possible aspect. The graphics were better than anything seen before. Sound effects were in full stereo, in higher quality than in any other game before (yet Doom had also decent support for the plain PC-beeper). It had networked multiplayer, with deatmatch and co-operative play (two forms of multiplayer that are, still, the most commonly used).
Doom was also very easily editable - unlike any game before, in Doom game editing was actually encouraged by ID software. Just by downloading some tools, anyone could make their own levels, create new weapons and enemies or just change the wall textures in the normal game. This, of course, led to a flood of 3rd party Doom levels, ranging from crappy single-level soft-porn trash to fan-made total conversions that were almost better than the original.
Doom's level design was very original and beautiful. First time ever the game designers had the freedom to truly express themselves. Doom starts off from a run-over space-military complex on the other moon of Mars, gradually degenerating from the ultra-modern claustrophobic computer hallways to hellish citadels, built from living flesh and furnished with dead bodies. The wall textures, that were mostly based on actual photos, are very beautiful. The artists of Doom clearly placed every single pixel with care. Some of this detail is sadly lost, because the 8 bit shading routines and low, VGA resolution. Still, Doom's texture art is very beautiful, something that many modern (especially console)games lack.
The sickening surroundings are filled with monsters of all sorts. There are zombies and demons, ranging from the puny, spiked and brown Imps to rocket-throwing Cyberdemons. Every single enemy is rendered with precision and detail, unfortunately somewhat pixelated.
And the barrier of sound surrounding the player was almost too real. The monsters roared and bellowed, the hydraulic doors hissed and exploding barrels boomed just like in the real world. Somewhy we never hear the player-controlled marine saying a single wort apart from his blood-freezing death scream.
Everything here is topped out by a haunting musical score, industrial and metal, yet pop enough to please the casual mainstream player. While some of the tunes are a bit repeative and boring, most of them would not be out of place even in Fulci's horror movies.
All this audiovisual beauty is spiced with extremely high level of violence and action, where peace is only for reloading guns and the carnage stops only when the player has finally left the battlefield - just to enter again some other day. Doom has the highest ever overall body count in any 3D shooter (except Doom 2), nearing 2000 kills in the end and delivering it's good bit of non-stop orgy of blood and gore that has led into too many lawsuits against the game. Unbelievably the controls never let you down. The game has close to perfect playability, that has only been exceeded in other ID's masterpieces (Quakes, not Commander Keen) and Half-Life.
The game's story, briefly mentioned in the manual, serves only as a backdrop to this huge killing feast. Still you see and know, without any words said or written, the cold, clinical and feelingless military operation turn into a revenge for your dead friends, friends that are currently out there, hunting you. And the player gets the same feeling that the nameless marine gets. In the first episode you just kill, because that is what they pay you for. In the second episode you first feel disbelief, and then comes disgust, in the form of hanged, mutilated bodies still twisting in their final agony. Finally you get your revenge in the third episode, with the BFG frying your enemies into red puddles of slime and you feel JOY for killing them. In the end there is the relief, that lasts only until you see the rabbit.
There is nothing bad in Doom, unless you count the storyline that has been abstracted to the point where all plot ceases to exist, except in the form of concept.
The Bottom Line
Still, almost nine years after it's release, I do play Doom now and then. And everyone should play Doom at least a bit. Just to know, where it all started.
The uncompromising combination of awesome gameplay, extremely powerful atmosphere and solid level design leave nothing to be desired for a shooter fanatic.
DOS · by Aapo Koivuniemi (41) · 2002
Absolutely EVERYTHING is good in this game - graphics were kick-ass for the time, the monsters looked cool and some even creepy, level design was fun and weapons looked real. The sound was very enjoyable - great soundtracks and sounds of monster roaring made the gameplay impressive. And the gameplay? There's nothing to say about it except that its a perfect 5! Its just an orgasm to play Doom - killing such epic monsters like Barons, Imps, Cacodemons etc. with weapons like the pistol and the shotgun. Except these of course, we have some very powerful weapons like the Rocket Launcher, Plasma Rifle and the famous BFG9000. The game also had a descent story, separated into 3 episodes, which take place on Phobos, Deimos, and Hell itself.
If there's anything to not like about this game, than it might be the controls, which weren't too easy, because buttons were quite far away from each other, but there's nothing seriously wrong about Doom. Its Doom for gods sake! And by the way, there are mods for Doom like zDoom or jDoom, which you can download to not only customise your controls, but also to completely change some effects and play the game in a resolution which suits you.
The Bottom Line
I think every gamer out there knows what Doom is and how kick-ass it is, so there is nothing to describe, unless you don't know what Doom is, i'll tell you -, its not just a game, ITS A LEGEND! If you haven't played Doom, you don't know what a really good FPS game is. Enough said.
DOS · by Medicine Man (328) · 2009
Well, you naysayers be damned, but DOOM really did change the face of gaming in a massive way when it was released. Who doesn't remember it? Office networks being used for 4-player DOOM Fragfests, DOOM being Top Download on God knows how many BBSes for months and months on end, people talking about it in schools, offices...ANYWHERE! DOOM is a household name now, but what made it such? Read on, people.
First, DOOM is all about action. Raw, white-knuckle action. You're a hardened Space Marine out to kill the vile hellspawn that killed your buddies, and you're doing it the only way you can: big guns blaring. It's a simple formula that WORKS, and so well, in fact, that I've yet to see a 3D shooter that's all about the simple, "kill the evil guys and survive" premise that DOOM offers. The gameplay is pretty simple. You traverse each level, shoot anything that tries to shoot, claw, bite, or otherwise maim you, pick up some sweet firearms (BFG 9000, anyone?), and make your way to the exit. But above all else, try to stay alive!
But if you think that that's all the game is, you'd better keep reading: you do have to use your wits as well as your trigger finger, because you have to learn where certain items are placed, especially health items. God forbid you end up ambushed in a certain room by several shotgun-toting Sergants, only to end up escaping with about 5% health and almost no ammo. If you come across a stash of health and ammo in, say, a little out of the way room with no enemies near it, remember where it is for just such an emergency.
Well, the gamplay is out of the way. So what about the rest of the game? Well, I've got to admit: even for being released nearly 7 years ago, the engine in DOOM is still pretty cool. I remember playing DOOM when it first came out on an old 386 DX/40 with 8 MB of RAM, and seeing that engine running so smoothly and being so damn impressed. Also, the game had a very eerie, creepy feel to it, made even moreso with great music and sound effects. The enemies, despite looking very cheesy now, were especially creepy looking back then. And, to be honest...I did jump the first time I saw the Baron of Hell at the end of the first episode...I think it was that scream it let out when it saw you.
It's DOOM...what's not to like about DOOM?
The Bottom Line
Everyone who's played DOOM knows what it's all about, and the shareware and full versions are still readily available in millions of locations. DOOM is forever a classic, a technical innovation, and just an all-around great blast.
Have you met your DOOM today? :)
DOS · by Satoshi Kunsai (2021) · 2001
I will say right of the bat that this game, along with Super Mario All Stars on the SNES, made me become a gamer. I have been playing this game since I was five or something and even to this day I still play it regularly.
Obviously, the first thing that made DOOM such a great game for me, is its gameplay. Of course, on paper it does not say much. You go from point A to point B, killing everything in sight and collecting keys. Rinse and repeat for as long as the game goes. But it is that particular simplicity that contributes to its great gameplay. It is pure, non-nonsense, high octane action all way through. A variety of weapons, enemies and levels will keep you entertained till the very end.
With pistols, shotguns, rocket launchers, chainsaws and more you have more than enough to use against the numerous zombies, imps, gorilla-like demons, flaming skulls and of course the famous Bruiser brothers. Every monster has its own strengths and weaknesses and you really need to adjust your strategy depending what weapons you have at your disposal and what monsters you are facing. Do not start using a pistol against something like a Baron of Hell or a rocket launcher against a swarm of charging Lost Souls.
But DOOM's gameplay is not its only asset. Its graphics and presentation as a whole definitely deserve as much praise. Yes, compared to today everything in the game looks like a hellish, ultra-violent version of a Looney Tunes cartoon, but for 1993, DOOM's graphics were nothing short of a revolution. DOOM was the first game that really created a realistic looking environment. Using differing lighting effects, varying heights and fully textured levels it was finally possible to walk through caves that looked like caves and buildings that looked like buildings.
And then there is the atmosphere, which was far ahead of its time as well and still remains compelling even to this day. Both the tech and hell levels manage to look believable. Tech levels have terminals showing useless info, cargo boxes and huge, important looking doors. Hell levels have rivers of blood and lava, dark caves and caverns with rock or flesh walls and hanging, mutilated bodies everywhere.
Finally, there is the music and sound effects. For music, DOOM uses heavy metal music based on songs by Pantera, Slayer and Metallica for many levels while others have dark and atmospheric music made by Bobby Prince. Even people who do not like metal music or dark ambient music will certainly like DOOM's soundtrack. It perfectly fits the game and every level has a suitable music track. As for the audio, every weapon sounds great and all monsters sound pretty intimidating (gotta love the demon's growl and the Cyberdemon's walking sound).
Although I have been praising this game so far and I consider DOOM one of gaming's biggest landmarks, I do have one of two negative remarks about this game. First and foremost, while most levels have an excellent design, some levels like E2M6 and E3M7 have big, Wolfenstein 3D like mazes. I, for one thing, dislike mazes since they artificially increase the time it takes to get through the level and overall they are just a chore to get through. It may be just me with my lack of patience with this. But this is just a bit of nip picking.
And of course, do not play DOOM for its story. Do not expect philosophical views, plot twists or high character depth (take a game like Deus Ex if you want all that). But does this game need a story? Of course not!
The Bottom Line
This game must be played by anyone with even the slightest interest in gaming. Do not let DOOM's age fool you, this game will grab you by the throat and balls and will not let you go until you have finished it. And I case you did finish it, go ahead and download the many, many great mods and conversions for Doom. Basically, this game has years of lasting appeal.
So get this game from Steam, eBay, your brother, friend, or simply get the shareware version, I do not care. Grab that BFG and start blasting away!
DOS · by Stijn Daneels (79) · 2014
Ah, Doom. I think everyone on the planet knows about this game already - in that sense its sort of like Super Mario Bros., except with 12 gauge shotguns, high-powered energy weapons and unlimited numbers of hellspawn. But yeah, in terms of popularity, it's like SMB. In a more personal sense, Doom is also the only game I have ever played that caused me to have a major physical reaction (ie: more physical than jumping out of my chair) while playing it. And it is also the very first game that made me have a major mental reaction; it was way too dark to see in most of the areas in the game (primarily because I had a rubbish monitor which was as dark as a black hole on its brightest setting), so I was afraid to play the game. The only way I felt comfortable progressing was using IDBEHOLD and choosing the light goggles. Of course, that was when I was ten-years old, don't do that anymore.
Anyway, let's get down to business.
Since Doom doesn't have much of a plot (kill demons and exit the level), I'll just skip right along to the technical aspects. First, the graphics. The graphics were revolutionary in 1993-94. There was nothing else on the market that could compete with Doom in terms of "realtime" graphics. Yeah, there were the FMV games like Myst and Rebel Assault, but those were glorified point-and-click affairs. But Doom had the fastest and best looking game engine available, a situation that persisted until well into 1996. The visuals themselves where excellent, especially in the areas where the ID guys took their time and put some extra detail into the game. All of Episode I or E2M7, for example, still sends chills into my spine even in a day and age with real-time bump mapping, sophisticated particle effects and antialising.
The sound system is also the subject of heavy work. While not quite as innovative as the graphics and the game engine, every sound for every monster or object has been perfectly picked and mastered. The music also - in the MIDI style, at any rate - is phenomenal, ranging from blaring rock to slow apocalyptic movements.
The control system is as simple as it gets for an FPS. Use the arrow keys to move around, Control to fire and Space to open doors. Not much different than what games use these days, except now you have mouselook and you use WASD instead of the arrow keys. Either way, it works.
Gameplay is excellent. The combat is fast and furious, and you can get quickly overwhelmed with scores of enemies attacking you at once on the higher difficulty levels. But the in-game save system is, as always, eminently helpful and even with saves it never really gets too overwhelming.
To quote PC Gamer UK's final assessment of Theme Park from June of 1994: "You'll die someday and won't be able to play it anymore".
OK, its not that good (both in regards to Theme Park and Doom), but it's pretty close in Doom's neck of the woods. Still, some areas of the game just don't seem to have had much work put into them. I am not sure if it is E2M4 or E2M5, but there is one level midway through Episode II where there are a lot of technical textures and a river of poisonous waste. Now, while a good portion of that level is just fine, there are also instances of pedestrian level design to be found in that map as well. Interesting architecture can really go a long way in improving the enjoyment of the game, so levels where said architecture is lacking can feel like real slogs.
In addition, the game just gets repetitive by Episode III and you start to want it to end. You can only stand wasting three thousand imps before the whole process gets a bit dull and tedious.
The Bottom Line
Instead of asking people to get this game, I would elect to ask prospective buyers of Doom why they don't already own it. Whether you like Doom (or FPSs in general) or not, you simply are not a hardcore gamer until you have been baptized by the fire that is Episode I.
If you don't own Doom, you must get it and play it. Plain and simple.
DOS · by Longwalker (723) · 2011
At the time, the opportunity to waste crowds of zombies with a pump-action shotgun, whilst gliding through an attractively-detailed, texture-mapped setting was the selling-point (although nobody actually bought the game - everybody sat up all night downloading all 14 mb of it, instead). In retrospect the ability to play against three other people on a TCP/IP network was enormously good fun, too, and a portent of things to come. Nowadays it's still good fun for half an hour or so - with the recent 'GLDoom' 3D upgrade it has a whole new lease of life.
Well, it gets a bit monotonous after a while - you run around shooting things - and after all these years it's too familiar to be really exciting. Still, it's almost beyond criticism.
The Bottom Line
It's Doom - you know, Doom. You must have heard of it. It's Doom. Doom.
DOS · by Ashley Pomeroy (225) · 2000
Doom was arguably the killer app of the MS-DOS world. Whole essays have been written about the game's freakish popularity and immense appeal, let alone the game itself. Just about everything good and bad about Doom has been written and rehashed many times, so one more review can hardly hurt.
It's nothing short of amazing how transcendental the game has become. It has a plot you could fit on a postcard, and gameplay that owes much to 2D arcade shooters. Yet many people take it as seriously as the air they breath. It features a faceless, nameless main character who never speaks a word (he's been nicknamed "the Doomguy" by a whole generation of gamers) who has somehow become a more recognizable character than the leads of most RPG and adventure games. It's stupid, brainless, violent and symbolizes every bad impression the general public has about video games. Yet very few games can claim to have transformed a genre, and for that sort of appeal the game must have done something right.
So in my opinion what are the factors that made Doom popular?
1. Gameplay. Doom is the distillation of the FPS genre. No subtleties, no niceties, nothing so pretentious as a story, just crazy white-knuckle action from beginning to end. This is the same formula that 90% of all action games have tried to succeed on. Id Software crafted a game that is extremely fast and extremely addictive, and combined with an advanced 3D engine was almost a sure-fire megahit. Play most 3D games made before Doom and you'll throw them out the window in no time, but Doom is eminently playable even to this day.
But Doom is not simply fun because of arcadish button-mashing, it was one of the first action games you could actually get immersed in. It's difficult to define, Doom just hits all the right psychological buttons. You feel terror, you feel elation, you feel exactly what the game wants you to feel. The game has no story, but that doesn't matter. The graphics (these days) are crappy, but that doesn't matter. While playing it, you are a space marine, trying to escape from a sick and deadly industrial world. It's amazing how much this game involves you in what's happening, especially next to games with much better graphics and much better stories that nevertheless fail to engage you in quite the same way.
2. Technology. Doom wasn't THE most advance game released up to that point (Ultima Underworld had a significantly better engine, with slopes and stackable rooms) but it still was quite revolutionary for its time. Doom introduced gaming to things like spiral staircases, elevators, crushing ceilings, and the most advanced 3D architecture ever seen in a game. It was fully texture mapped, featured realistic lighting, and still ran very fast on a 386. You could even interact with your environment to a limited extent (raising/lowering elevators and stuff like that in realtime 3D, which sounds incredibly simple today but was almost unheard of then).
The game was also designed with a very open-ended structure, allowing (and encouraging) users to add their own content. They even released the source code. Even if you don't feel like downloading one of the numerous Windows ports of the game, the game generally works fine on Windows XP. Doom is a technological marvel.
3. Ambiance. Doom is not a horror game, but nonetheless contains many scary moments. It was the first FPS to realistically incorporate lighting. If you fire a gun, everything around you gets lit up by the muzzle flash. Lights could fade in and out like strobes, and some really tense moments occur when there's hardly any light and you can't see what's attacking you. Speaking of getting attacked, Doom's monsters are deformed, drooling, nightmare-inducing freaks, and even after years of playing you can still get tricked into a "WOAH CRAP!" reaction when one sneaks up on you. The game's textures are weird and in many cases disturbing, some of them are miniature works of art. Lastly is Bobby Prince's unconventional but very effective music, which complements the game's frantic, gut-wrenching action and tense, claustrophobic levels extremely well.
4. The right place at the right time. OK, it's fun to have the illusion that Doom was The Little Engine that Could, a tiny shareware game that succeeded against all expectations, but that's not the way it happened. The stars were aligned for Doom's release. Firstly, technology had advanced to the point where texture-mapped 3D games were possible and playable. Second, modems and netcards were starting to become common, giving Doom a very powerful selling point in its multiplayer. Third, the groundwork for how the FPS genre should play like had been laid down by Wolfenstein 3D. The gaming industry was waiting for something that exploited those concepts. Doom's creators knew exactly what they were doing when they made it.
It bears mention that Doom was the GTA3 of the time in terms of controversy, due to its extreme violence and satanic references. By today's standards Doom looks tame, but it was definitely a factor in the rise of what we now call "adult" games.
You could argue that the difficulty is skewed. The first four levels are on the easy side, and the fifth is a joke (I mean that literally, the guys at id confirmed it at one point). Also the game can sometimes be a bit too dependant upon mazes and key-hunting instead of action, though far less so than Wolfenstein 3D. This is all just nitpicking, and at the risk of sounding fanboyish there really isn't much wrong with Doom.
With that said, you need to approach it with the right expectations. Doom is incredibly advanced for its time, but the fact remains that it was made in 1993. If you play current-gen shooters and have gotten used to scripted cutscenes and inventories and auto-scaling difficulty and bullet-time effects then you'll have to lower your expectations when you play Doom, otherwise you're setting yourself up for disappointment. Fair warning.
The Bottom Line
Doom is a great game and I recommend it without hesitation. It's the most influential shooter ever made and even today it's romp to remember (provided you make some concessions to it). I'll leave you with this interesting note. The Doom community these days is not made up of nostalgic oldies or die-hard collectors like you'd think, but rather gamers who choose to play Doom over new releases. The game exercises a strange charm that transcends age in the same way Pacman and Tetris do. Think about all the hyped new releases as of this writing: Gothic 3, Quake 4, Call of Duty 2, etc. Will anyone be playing them in 10 years time? Maybe not, but people will still be playing Doom, I'm almost sure of that.
DOS · by Maw (833) · 2007
Action, Action, ACTION. That's what Doom's all about, and that's what it delivers perfectly. Doom is the grandaddy of FPS's. Not the first, not the original, but certainly the first big bang. Few other games can mark a before and after as well as Doom and there's a reason for that.
Thanks to a lighting fast and extremely detailed 3d engine (and full-screen mind you) Doom delivered the most intense action ever to hit a PC screen not to mention smoothly animated beautiful graphics, which coupled with a dark and grim setting turned the game into an unforgettable experience. No one who has played this game can forget the moments where a demon crawled from some dark corner right in front of you scaring the hell out of you as you tried to frantically shoot something, Anything, just to stay alive... and tough that seems tried and true today, it was a first at the time.
The level design was top notch, featuring levels that were truly fun to play in, displayed an amazing level of 3d-ness for the time, and provided reasonable challenges without going to the anal extremes of games like Dark Forces and it's god forsaken labyrinths. Further praise has to go to the sound department which became another hallmark in gaming history. I don't know if I'll ever remember the sound of Wolf's machine guns, but Doom's demonic shrieks and that sound doors made when opened... man, that will stick with me forever. Not to mention Bobby Prince's strange yet wonderfully paced music, which only helped elevate the already magnificent ambience.
In short, Doom's greatest strength was (and is) to trigger a completely emotional experience. It's a complete ego trip, and a wholly satisfying one at that. You get scared, you get desperate, you feel fear like you've never felt before and then you just let it all go in a gory, testosterone-powered ultra-violent climax with more action than a John Woo HK flick. Simple pleasure? Yes, but so is sex if you think about it :) and happiness is after all in the little things.
Plus Doom is the forefather of everything you think is so cool nowadays (read: Counter Strike, Half-Life) and unlike those games, the fanbase it spawned wasn't nearly as obnoxious as these new l33t-speaking bastards :).
Doom quite frankly has few to none shortcomings. The reason for this is because it's a tremendously honest and upfront game when it comes down to defining itself unlike other games that sell themselves like something they aren't (hello Diablo 2!). So it doesn't have a story you say? Heck, Doom never wanted to have a story! Or interesting characters, or none of that. It's not about that pal. Most intellectual pseudo-jerks make a point of dismissing Doom because of it's intellectual shortcomings, when they fail to realize than that is because Doom is a purely emotional experience, not an intellectual one. And failing to see that is a huge flaw of reasoning :).
Doom is about being scared shitless, doom is about pressing the fire button millions of times per second, Doom is about not caring for stuff like story or background or stuff like that. And tough today that alone isn't enough to hold a game, Doom was the first one to do it really well, and was completely honest about it (id not being a million dollar-making juggernaut at the time). Judging Doom for that is like criticizing a scary movie for being scary! If you don't like scary movies go see Bergman, but if you want a scary movie here is your Doom baby. :)
...having said all that, I'd like to point out that tough the base gameplay is nothing short of stupid, it never managed to get tiresome or boring. Most people who claim that the "shoot-get key-exit" gameplay was boring and repetitive, do so without placing themselves at the time and place when Doom was first released, which meant that such a stupid gameplay premise was still novel and fresh. Plus Doom was really a short and sweet ride that never managed to get stale (Doom 2 is another story however)... So yeah, Doom's gameplay made Robotron seem like rocket science, but at the time we where all mesmerized by it. You know it, and I know it. And why the hell am I writing this in the "bad" part???
Ditto the graphics, yeah NOW they look like Lego, but at the time nothing moved faster, smoother and with such variety of critters, levels, etc.
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is that Doom is like sex. If you want to think about it go see a Woody Allen film, if you wanna do it then here's Doom (well actually get your butt off the computer and get yourself a girl). She's the baddest, sexiest mama in town, and she'll give you the ride of your life. But be warned, she only takes real men (or women too really ;))
...Oh, and if you found that to be completely over-sexed and uncalled for then you are right on the money. Because in a way that's how Doom is, for better or for worse. If you are feeling touchy-feely that's fine by me, but if you feel like heeding the call of the wild... then I've got a shotgun and some demons to show you. ROCK&ROLL!!!
DOS · by Zovni (10504) · 2002
WONDERFUL game for its time, I must say. The graphics are pretty pixelated now, but then on the old 13" inch monitors it looked like bliss. I remember it myself! The levels are all masterpieces, and are full of imagination, and most of them DO represent the level name, although many people think otherwise. The engine was great, and could even be described as its own operating system. This game had lovely physics for 1993, too. Bad guys flew backwards when shot, which had never been seen before, and there appeared (to the player at least) to be many levels of floor, above, underneath, etc. Walls were no longer restricted to 90º, which was a welcome addition to the 3d shooter world at the time.
The music was SPECTACULAR (Bobby Prince), and the sound effects scared me the most; they surround you and give you a sense of really being there. You hear the demon growl, and you know - Something's there.
Great weapon variety, too. You are not limited to a measly 4 weapon arsenal as you are in Wolfenstein 3D - You have true man's weapons this time round, and trust me, they ARE man's weapons. There is a lot of pace in this game, you cannot get bored... You always hear monster noises, there is no escaping it, and it makes you KNOW you have more demons to slay. Enemies CAN hurt you from above, but Doom lets you fire back without having to move up/down at all, it virtually aims up/down for you, so don't panic like I did when I first played this a long 12 years ago.
What's really nifty, however, is that there are now source ports that can let you enjoy the game with a "make over", if you like. Programs such as ZDoom, JDoom/Doomsday, PRBOOM, etc, really add to the modern Doom experience, presenting you with polygon/3D graphics, resolutions of 1280x1024, and much much more.
This is not to say that classic old doom is bad - Far from it. It's saying that DOOM is still alive and kicking, and is staying with us for years to come...
I hate to say there are bad things in Doom, but like with all games, it's true. Bugs do exist, but have been narrowly phased out in each version released of the game.
My gripe with Doom is more principle-based than anything else. There is no room for the player to put any imagination into Doom as a game. It's just "shoot this shoot that". Games such as "Monkey Island" are no longer made often, pretty much due to the 3D shooter market that Doom has helped create. This is slightly unfortunate for imaginative games that really require thinking and logic, which Doom certainly doesn't.
The Bottom Line
... It's still great, of course. I love whipping my plasma rifle out and burning a few imps to heck. In fact, I may go and do that right now...
Buy this game. Respect it - Buy it. It's worth every penny, even 12 years later, and with source ports, you can enjoy it in the 21st Century.
...... I love the smell of demons frying in the mornin'.......
DOS · by Quackbal (45) · 2005
It oozed atmosphere! The rather radical graphics (for that time, so bear with me) were breathtaking, and the lay-out of how to make 1st perspective games was born with the release of Doom. This was also the last game where John Romero got a grip on how to make a game in the first place. ;-)
Apart from the "rotten tomato" opponent, all enemies were downright scary and evil. The imps are still haunting my wildest dreams. The downright scary bit was stretched further only by id's successors: Doom 2 and Quake.
Technologically, it also was a breakthrough. It was the first game to successfully support the Gravis Ultrasound (a very though nut to crack in the gaming society) and had some pretty (neat, but shortlived) features in networking, like the ability to use 4 computers in an network to give one player a 360 degree panning view.
Doom simply was the 'attack' bit in the envelope of 1st perspective gaming. Period.
Even back in 1993 I didn't like the pixelisation of the game. It really turned into lego-vision during a heated battle.
Apart from the fact that it soiled my pants on many an occasion (when playing it in total darkness with headphones on, in the middle of the night) I ca'n't think of any unpleasant thoughts concerning Doom.
The Bottom Line
Not having played Doom, whatever version you use, is like trying to live without breathing.
DOS · by shifter (57) · 2000
The sound, the lighting, the multiplayer deathmatches, the intuitive & responsive gameplay, the novelty. I cant put my finger on it, it had a fit and balance like nothing Id seen before.
My wrist hurts. I cant focus. The sun is comming up and I forgot to sleep. That was then. Now I want to play this with my son but Im a little worried about the theme. Ive been looking for a WAD that might be less doomish.
The Bottom Line
I recall being turned on to Doom whilest living in a military barracks. My co-workers had downloaded the demo and insisted I had to get a nic card and get networked with them so they could kill me. Not being a big PC game fan at the time I agreed with a mix of skeptisisim and curiosity. We got the cards installed and ran thinnet between the rooms. I cant say exactly why or how but in a very short time this game went from a jaw dropping novelty, to engrossing passtime, to possibly unhealthy obsession. We played till our wrists were numb. The question "what should we do tonight?" became rehtorical.
In retrospect I have this game to partially thank for exposing me to networking, which in turn may have lead to my current employment. On the other hand, it may also have contributed to the fact that I never got my pilots license though I could have walked to the aero club for the classes & flights. In fact I probably lost the better part of a year to this game. Ohh, but what a fine year it was...
DOS · by Mr. E (3) · 2003
When this game came out in 93, it was a vast improvement over Castle Wolfenstein 3-D. There were "cooler" weapons, better graphics and better sounds. Heck, I can still hear then noises of the various demons and my gun going off as I killed everything that moved! It was highly addictive and after it was placed on the company network, people had a hard time getting any work done! lol Replay value was added by going through at greater difficulty settings.
I never liked the bobbing motion of the character as you ran from place to place. After a while it made me sea-sick! I loaded the game up last week for fun and after a few levels I was nauseous.
The Bottom Line
This is a first-person shooter. The object is to get from the entrance to the exit alive. Bonuses for getting through in a certain time frame (which were unrealistic IMO) or for killing ALL the monsters and finding all the secrets. The graphics, sound, and play are dated by today's standards but when this came out, this was top-of-the-line stuff! This is the game which while not the first of it's kind certainly started the first-person shooter craze of today.
DOS · by AstroNerdBoy (35) · 2002
Doom! It's Doom, mate! The game that changed the face of the world, the game whose release was more important to the computer game industry than any game before or after! It's Doom!
What's not to love about doom?
- The graphics. To say that they were revolutionary at the time is a wee bit of an understatement. Doom's graphics were, to say the least, top notch at the time, and to say a bit more: AMAZING! I got this game on a few disks someone gave me to copy another game on. I then decided to check it out, and to my amazement I encountered the game that will change my life forever. It astounded me - the level of graphics on my miserable 386 was something I've never, ever witnessed before. It shocked me even more than
The 7th Guest. It was amazing. And I still find that the atmosphere in this game, the paranoid, claustrophobic textures and monsters that can still give me a heart attack in a gaming session late at night amaze me just as much today.
- Revolutionary raycasting engine that changed the industry's perception of 3D games forever.
- The music! Doom has among the best MIDI soundtracks to date, and definitely the best music in a first person shooter ever. It fits the game like a glove: usually quiet, spooky and claustrophobic, it entices fear in the heart of a player just where it counts. And it's damn well written too.
- The levels! The levels are just SO well designed, only surpassed by the masterpieces in
What more can you ask?!
Nothing. Doom is perfect.I wouldn't change even a bit.
The Bottom Line
The best first person shooter ever. I doubt I will ever feel the same about another game.
DOS · by Tomer Gabel (4539) · 2000
Man, where do I start. When Doom was released, the graphics were a quantum leap over the already impressive graphics of Wolfenstein 3D, with variable ceiling and floor textures, different height levels, stairs, lighting effects, detailed and varied enemies and weapons. The sound and music is pretty impressive too, and all the weapons have a burly sound to them. The levels are all pretty large, and all are very well designed. I remember when I first played this game, I was throughly impressed, and horrified at the same time, the game scared the crap out of me, and is still good for a chill when you play it late at night with the lights low. The game was a technical marvel for its' day, the impressive visuals moved along smoothly on a lowly 386, with little slowdown. The weapons were very cool, my favorite being the BFG-9000, and a big step up from the pixelized guns in Wolfenstein 3D.
Although there is a lot to like, if you're not a big fan of the FPS genre, the repetitive pace of the game can be annoying. A few more enemies would have been nice, as would including the double barreled shotgun in the first version, rather than just in Doom 2.
The Bottom Line
This title, along with the earlier, but just as significant Wolfenstein 3D, built the foundations for the wealth of FPS games existing today. If you've been living under a rock your whole life, and haven't played this game, you should do so immediately. The gameplay and graphics hold up fairly well, even in todays glitzed-over games market.
DOS · by Ryu (50) · 2002
Whats not to like? It's Doom. This was the game that introduced me to the real first-person shooter. The fondest memories of 1993 was the feeling of going around with heavy fire power and blowing away demon hell spawn.
Well in hindsight the game is not perfect. Now adays the graphics look dated and you really notice how pixelated everything is. And back in the days of yore I used to get headaches from the soundtrack, but thats solved by simply popping in one of your favorite heavy metal soundtracks.
The Bottom Line
Its Doom. I could not imagine a person who has not already played it (or heard about it from the post-Columbine media). Doom is really the introduction to first person shooters. If they were to write a book about games it would be in a chapter called Wolfenstein 3d and Doom: the Beginning.
DOS · by Ryan Prendiville (689) · 2000
It's engine is much better than this from Wolfenstein 3D - maps are no longer enormous mazes, you can at least extinguish rooms, because they have different heights, floors, cellings and shapes. There are also some windows and outdoor areas.
Weaponry is also much bigger than in Wolf 3D. There is shotgun, rocket launcher, plasma rifle or even chainsaw - and obviously there are even more weapons, which you can use against zombies, demons and other monsters. Game is well balanced, you will never run out of ammo in room fulfilled with evil creatures or walk through long, empty corridors without any enemy.
Also, soundtrack is also good - music varies from MIDI powered metal music to scary ambient tracks. Sounds are more realistic than from other games at the time. And last, but not least, Doom, as first FPS in the world, introduced multiplayer - with two types of gameplay (co-op and deathmatch) for max. 4 players.
Only two things - I managed to beat it in three hours (however you can download a lot of user-made levels). Also, Doom requires a source port if you want to play it under Windows or Linux. You can run it using DOSBox, but it's too much tweaking and ports add some new features, like 3D models or more detailed maps.
The Bottom Line
It's absolutely classic - it doesn't matter if you play only Solitaire or Minesweeper, you have to get this game and play at least one!
DOS · by Sir Gofermajster (485) · 2009
Doom, as everyone knows, was not the first game of its kind. Neither was Donkey Kong. But they managed to change the way people looked at games. Needless to say, Doom caused a lot more controversy due to its theme and explicit use of graphical violence. However this is a game that managed to capture almost everyone who ever touched the keyboard or controller to give it a try. How could a game with cartoon-like demons, shotguns and chainsaws manage to enthrall young and old alike, men and women, veteran gamers and people who never even played a game before?
The answer is simple: adrenaline, atmosphere and masterful game design. Simplicity and elegance. Speed and rhythm. Blasting away like a madman and spending long hours searching for that one, elusive secret chamber... Maneuvering into the proper position so that the demons accidentally shoot one another and then start fighting amongst themselves. Cleverly using doors, walkways, grates, health items, armour, protective gear and ammo so that you don't end up as Imp fodder. Surviving against overwhelming odds. That is Doom.
This game was even more important because it single-handedly started Internet multiplayer gaming on a massive scale, a fact that most people here seem to ignore. The graphics pushed PCs to their absolute limits, sound was superb and the MIDI soundtrack is among the best ever composed. Level design is fit for academic analysis and there hasn't been a better shotgun in a game ever since (apart from the super-shotgun in Doom II). Finally, it seems almost incomprehensible but id somehow managed to make creatures with a mostly basic AI sneak up on you! It took several years until another FPS managed to capture me with its atmosphere and the next one that actually scared me was Aliens Vs Predator, whole years later.
The Bottom Line
There are some people who think they know something about games and judge Doom with today's standards. Well, that is just not valid or objective. One cannot judge for instance Fritz Lang's Metropolis, comparing it to The Matrix. Violence and demons as a subject matter cannot condemn a game if it manages to turn it into a totally immersive and fun experience. I've seen mature people and women, target groups not really addicted to violence or gaming for its own sake wade through level after level of Doom without a pause. My own girlfriend played Doom fanatically (and still does occasionally) but hasn't touched another FPS since. And that is an all too common occurrence. So it's not violence that drew people to this game and whoever judges it in this manner is really being superficial. Doom represents a very important piece of gaming history. Accept if. Play it.
DOS · by Silverblade (1382) · 2004
It was fun when I first played it. The graphics were amazing, as was the sound. It was great, mindless fun. I loved it. Then....then I played System Shock, a game that surpasses Doom in every way imaginable. Well, except the mindless fun part.
Repetitive, boring gameplay. Fun at first, but you do the same thing in every level, which all look the same. There is no plot. Well, there's something about gates to hell and such, but I don't consider a blurb in the readme to be a plot, per se. It's just....boring. Nothing of interest, really.
The Bottom Line
A decent, albeit brainless game. Provides some fun for a while, but around the fourth or fifth level, I realized that I was doing the same thing: Shooting monsters, looking for the exit sign. I'd much rather face a crazed, power-mad sentient computer that takes a perverse pleasure in tormenting the player, a la SHODAN in System Shock. But hey, who wants a challenging game when you can click the "fire" button three thousand times a minute?
DOS · by Doug Peterson (5) · 2002
The levels were complex, yet not so complex as to leave you trapped frusterated on the same stage, while all of the enemies are dead and there's nothing to do but LOOK AROUND, your gun barrels' gettin' cooled down, your lust for destruction unsatisfied, manifest. The weapons. Fun as heck. A chainsaw? YES! Shotgun? CLASSIC. Chaingun? THANKYOU! Missle launcher? LET'S BLOW STUFF UP! ya know?
HA! ...okay fine. There is ONE THING! And that is the fact that the enemies are sprite images, not actual 3D objects. That, I would love to be changed. THEN, and only THEN, the game would reach all ideals I hold for the perfect arcade/action game.
The Bottom Line
HAPPYNESS IS A WARM GUN. DOOM IS A WARM GUN. Wanna blow stuff up? Wanna feed hot led into demon flesh, hear the animalistic grunt of pain sound as the enemy crumples to the ground, dead? Wanna combat the minions of HELL? Wanna have nightmares? Wanna have a boxing match with the Baron of Hell? PLAY DOOM!
DOS · by Steven Meyers (1) · 2001
Those who were there know.
It came out at the right time and set new standards for modern gaming. Many things we today take for granted were introduced by this game. Doom was way before its time when it got out and yet it was runnable on an average computer. That was something.
ID managed to make a fake 3D world that ran almost smoothly on a 386. (Editor's note: I ran Doom on my 386/40 in low detail and got 35 frames per second -- very impressive.) They managed to make a truly interactive networking game. They understood that not
only graphics but sound was important to make you react. And the list goes on and on.
This game pushed gore way too far. It made gamers used to realistic violence. I'm not faint-hearted. As a matter of fact, I enjoyed all the gore a lot. I've never laughed diabolically as much as with this game. However, this game is not only a trend-setter in terms of game technology, it's one with violence too. Doom is the first Texas chainsaw massacre in which you have control. I find that pretty disturbing.
The Bottom Line
There is no better description for this game than this: Perfection. You simply couldn't, and can't, get bored of this game. Most of us out there played Doom at every imaginable place, at every imaginable hour and in every imaginable - er, condition.
DOS · by Olivier Masse (443) · 2000
Doom. Have you ever wondered how did your polygon filled T&L top notch boring new FPS came to be? Doom. One word: Doom.
Doom created the suspense on games, it created 3D enthralling deep architectural beautiful levels, it created multiplayer deathmatch and surround sound. Due to all this, Doom might not have been the first FPS (it was beaten by Castle Wolfenstein 3D by a year) but it's certainly the best.
Doom will survive all this crap about "Graphics are most important than gameplay" new bullshit and remain as a cult game in gaming history. Doom.
The Bottom Line
Doom is the perfect FPS. It might not be the perfect game (that place I leave to Tomb Raider for various reasons) but it's a perfect FPS.
DOS · by Ricardo Ferreira (2) · 2007
What's not to like? You've got big guns + lots of flesh-rending baddies = blood, blood, BLOOD! To this day, it's still my favorite overall FPS, and whenever I'm stressed out, I just boot it up, turn on God Mode, and run around recreating The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. After half an hour, my ying and yang are alligned again. It don't get much better than that.
Um. Good question. Oh, after version 1.4, they decided to make "Respawn" mode not work with the hardest difficulty level. That took away some truly psychopathic fun. And the books it spawned were a bad idea.
The Bottom Line
If you're sick of the latest 3D wonders making your Voodoo 5 card crash every five minutes, try this for a little while instead. You'd be amazed how great gameplay can overcome 64-bit graphics.
DOS · by WizardX (116) · 2000
This is the game I grew up on. When I was a little kid, about 5 or 6, my dad took the opportunity to initiate me into the world of D00M. Sure, you hysterical parent types out there may be shouting "Is THIS what you want your kids to learn from?!". Listen, give you kids more credit... somehow, I doubt a virtual simulation of battling demons from hell would cause them to go on killing sprees. If that is the case though... I blame that kids genetics. I've seen some argue that D00M is mindless and therefore of little worth. Listen, sure, games have alot of worth when it comes to challenging a players mind. Chess, RTS games, puzzle games... they all have their places, but don't deny the fact that games like D00M are just as good, but for different reasons. When I want to wrap my mind around something, I'll play Myst. When I want to feel pure adrenaline going through my system, I'll load up D00M.
...I guess I should stop griping and get to the game itself. Well, what is there left to explain? It's D00M. You run around and shoot anything that gets in your way. It's fun. It's damn fun.
Perhaps I'm just a -little- biased, being conditioned from childhood to appreciate this piece of software, but I can't find a single problem with it.
The Bottom Line
It's purely run and gun. It's fun. It's also free on the internet these days.
DOS · by Astro Al (1) · 2004
This was the must have game of its time, possibly one of the most accessible easy to play games; you simply run and shoot. The game excels in spades in this and little do you have to worry about why you're doing it, mindless monsters seem to have little better to do than threaten you in a variety of predictable mannerisms. What exists of a story involves something going wrong on a Mars research station and opening a doorway to Hell, or something like that. Story isn't exactly the strong point and it's all an excuse to put you in a position of blasting a lot of bad guys in an alien environment, avoiding any need to make it even slightly realistic.
It also spawned the modding community and is probably one of the most modded games ever, not to mention the most ported, pretty much every low power platform has had a DOOM version ported to it. This is good in opening the game world up to the user, though most of the mods just means more levels of blasting.
It brought the gore home really, creating the video game nasty, removing any need to ask why you were doing what you were doing, and just shooting. The game holds up poorly to the test of time now, as it becomes boring due to the game designer focusing mainly on shooting monsters with a variety of weapons. Any intellectual elements, such as puzzles and level layouts are really just copies of Wolfenstien 3D, where you have to pick up a blue key to open a blue door, and of course find where the door is.
This kind of simple puzzle, compared with say, System Shock's more complex communicating a clue then you solving the problem, lead to the huge initial separation between action and adventure games that marked the mid-90s and beyond. It also started the decline of the adventure genre, with adventure makers switched off by the pointless brutality, and action gamers getting into shooters and being able to ignore any thinking beyond monitoring their health and ammo.
The modding helped this as it was easier to make new levels and arrange monsters in those levels than it was to try and tie a cohesive story to your mods.
The Bottom Line
This is another historical curio, only really worth playing for the first few levels to get a feel for what the state of the industry was like at the time, and see what the fuss at the time was about. The graphics were good for the time and of course runs smoothly, but with no ambition in terms of storyline, there's nothing left to grab you now that graphics are far better. This shows the true need to invest some thought into games, as even text adventures hold up better now that games that rely purely on technology for their sales. If you want to play an old shooter, play System Shock instead, guaranteed it'll have you hooked for longer.
DOS · by RussS (807) · 2009
I'll just leave it blank...
They didn't create the FPS genre: Wolfenstein 3D was older. It's full of blood and killing, and nothing more; it just has a bad influence on you. This game teaches children to be violent and doesn't teach anything else.
Okay, graphics were good for the time, but that time there were hardly any FPS games, so it wasn't difficult to top them. "Doom" and its sequels are very similar to other FPSs, they don't have any innovation, so why did they become famous? Only because they had pretty good graphics. They were graphical showcases, not real games.
The gameplay in "Doom" was so boring! Just run and hit, run and hit again. Nothing new. All you do is just kill your enemies. No change at all compared to old arcade games! Almost everyone who plays "Doom" don't pay any attention to its story - that's because there is no story. All you should care about is killing the enemy more efficiently.
There is no spirit in this game, no soul. Nothing deep, if you scratch the surface, you find more surface.
The Bottom Line
If you want just to kill, kill, and kill, then you can play it... if you care for anything else, just forget it.
DOS · by Fading3 (19) · 2006
Contributors to this Entry
Critic reviews added by Havoc Crow (formerly JudgeDeadd), jumpropeman, Scaryfun, Kohler 86, shphhd, Alsy, Patrick Bregger, BuzzBomber, vedder, Sun King, Tim Janssen, Terok Nor, Cavalary, Ryan DiGiorgi, Tomas Pettersson, Parf, chirinea, phorque, yenruoj_tsegnol_eht (!!ihsoy).