DOOM (2016) Review
Few games have achieved the legacy that Doom has. The classic shooter is held in the highest regard by countless gamers around the world. Bethesda has aimed to revitalize classic titles like Wolfenstein, and now Doom.
DOOM is successful in this plight (much like Wolfenstein: The New Order), combing hoards of demons, huge weapons, and general, all-around, badassery. Rip & Tear through a long and fulfilling campaign, and head over to multiplayer to continue the experience much after the story has ended.
Doom certainly isn’t known for its story, and 2016’s DOOM is no different. Unsurprisingly, the game is set on the Union Aerospace Corporation’s base on Mars (at least for the beginning of the game) in search of alternative energy to combat an energy crisis back on Earth. Samuel Hayden, the cancer-ridden director of the facility, attempts to draw energy from Hell to fight the crisis. One of the scientists of the base, Oliva Pierce, makes a pact with the demons and thus releases Hell on Earth (or Mars, I guess).
Yes, the story is the same as it was back in 1993, however it doesn’t fall victim to boring and senseless exposition like Doom 3 did. DOOM throws you right into the action, after everything has gone all wrong. The story is revealed through short cut-scenes that rarely interrupt the action.
Putting the story on the backburner works in the favor of DOOM. Betheda took some nods from the original title, only revealing the story to those who want to discover it. While the story is light, it works perfectly for the game.
We’ve come a long way since 1993, and DOOM is a prime example of that. The game looks absolutely amazing, incorporating great texture, amazing optimization, and flashy effects like chromatic aberrations and lens dirt, leading to an overall cinematic look.
These effects don’t have to be engaged either. DOOM gives you complete control over the look, offering multiple options for lens flares, lens dirt, chromatic aberrations, and more. This kind of customization beyond textures and filtering shows that DOOM was made for a modern PC market, and it achieves in allowing the flexibility that that market demands.
Combine that with optimization offered by the Vulkan API, and even those with low-end systems can achieve beautiful results. DOOM is one of only a handful titles that currently support the Vulkan API, putting it on the cutting edge of graphical fidelity.
There is nothing that makes you feel more like a badass than killing demons while listening to metal. Mick Gordon, the composer of DOOM, does a fantastic job of capturing the energy and brutal nature of the game within every single track.
The metal soundtrack combines organic elements that have been twisted and mangled, resembling the hell it is accompanied by on-screen. This synthesis perfectly captures the nature of Doom, and Mick Gordon has easily created one of the best soundtracks in a video game in recent years.
Gordon also incorporates elements of classic Doom tracks, referencing them throughout the soundtrack. Thankfully, he didn’t opt to just play off nostalgia but instead pays homage to the classic tracks within new and unique creations.
The core of any Doom game (and most shooters for that matter) is the gameplay. DOOM comes in not only being one of the best looking and best sounding shooters on the market but one of the best playing. The game is fast and frantic, never feeling cheap, but always rewarding.
The array of weapons to choose from and all of their upgrade paths in truly astounding. I found myself wearing my mouse wheel down while in battle, constantly switching out weapons and their upgrades (sometimes for the same enemy). That’s because each of the weapons is incredibly balanced. I used the shotgun I got in the first level all the way through the game, with consistency. It’s a testament that, while there are a lot of options, that the weapons never get in the way of the experience, they only enhance it.
Addmittedly, I was skeptical of DOOM when first hearing about the “Glory Kill” system. While games like Bulletstorm have pulled off similar fast-paced kills, games like Brink have fallen sorely short. However, I found myself ripping & tearing (literally this time) throughout the entire game. I absolutely love the glory kill system. It rewards you for using it, is satisfying to execute, and, most important, is never forced upon you. You could easily play through the game (besides the tutorial level) without any glory kills and be at little to no disadvantage.
Overall, the gameplay of DOOM in not only some of the best in recent years, but some of the best out there. The game has fluid controls, badass weapons, and shooter mechanics that feel like butter.
For the Aficionado
For me, DOOM is an essential experience for a PC gamer. Bethesda hit it out of the park with this title, and due to the graphical fidelity and great controls, the game is best experienced on PC.
Everything about DOOM oozes badass. From the no-nonsense story, all the way to ripping demons faces apart, the game feels great, looks great, and sounds great. You would be missing out if you didn’t pick up DOOM, even at full price.
- Perfect Implementation of Story
- Amazing Visuals
- Fantastic Soundtrack
- Unmatched Gameplay
- Not a whole lot