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Written by  :  Chris Wright (105)
Written on  :  Apr 04, 2009
Platform  :  DOS
Rating  :  4.83 Stars4.83 Stars4.83 Stars4.83 Stars4.83 Stars

11 out of 15 people found this review helpful

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First and finest

The Good

It's so easy to make apologies for DOOM in this day and age. We all know how pixelated it is, and how limited the graphics engine is compared to contemporary titles. But really, when you start up DOOM II all this is quickly forgotten as you are taken back to 1995 when so many of us were enthralled by its simple yet extremely satisfying gameplay.

I think the key factor to DOOM II's longevity is the game balance. Because the experience of playing through a level won't deviate significantly from player to player, a level designer can be confident that each health pack and shotgun shell will be greeted with relief. The continual barrage of fierce demons and the urgent search for repair and restocking items makes this a very visceral affair. There really hasn't been a game since that matches the pure fun in playing through DOOM II, or one of the thousands of custom wads made by the community.

The Bad

Everything about DOOM II is first-rate and unmatched. However, I find that the design philosophy behind many of id's official 31 levels to be a little on the sadistic side. They are based heavily around deception, darkness, confusion, and being overwhelmed by demons. This can make for a frustrating gaming experience, which need not be the case if you can find a wholesome, straightforward wad to play where the primary challenge is just out-gunning your adversaries.

The Bottom Line

Terror, carnage, and massive bloodletting in the name of saving the Earth. What could be better?