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DOOM Eternal Pre-Release Review

DOOM Eternal Game Artwork

I have played Doom since I was about 5 years old. I can remember sitting on my grandpa’s lap, he would make the doom slayer run and I would do the shooting. Growing up I loved Doom 1 & 2! The second installment (Doom II) in the series is what I played the most growing up. I still occasionally install Doom 1&2 and get my demon slaying on. From what I can tell, DOOM: Eternal is going to be a return to nostalgia, with Hell on Earth crazy as ever. Let’s take a look.

DOOM: Eternal Returns to More Classic Enemies

This may be the most exciting thing about DOOM: Eternal for me. From what I can tell, the Id team is really doing their best to get these models and concepts to feel right. They’re keeping the nostalgia alive by doing their best to stay true to their classic counterparts, but also revamping them to be bigger than life.

Let’s take it from square one. You want a modern take on your early Id Doom days? Let’s compare the new concepts to the models from days of old. However, below is not an exhaustive list of all demons in the game, or even returning demons from 2016 (some from 2016 return with slight modifications, but from my viewpoint did not change enough to warrant mentioning here). All of the below concepts and models are brand new and make a first appearance in DOOM: Eternal

Zombieman

The zombieman is back!

DOOM Eternal Zombie
Top left classic Doom zombie, main image DOOM: Eternal zombie.




Arachnotron

The main difference seems to be the new cannon sitting on top of the Arachnotron.

DOOM Eternal Arachnotron
Bottom right classic Doom II Arachnotron, main image DOOM: Eternal Arachnotron.




Arch-Vile

The arch-vile is back!

DOOM Eternal Arch-Vile
Left classic Doom II Arch-Vile, right DOOM: Eternal Arch-Vile.




Mancubus

The mancubus is back!

DOOM Eternal Mancubus
Top right classic Doom II Mancubus, main image DOOM: Eternal Mancubus.




Pain Elemental

The Pain Elemental is back! Personally, strictly in terms of how this demon was reincarnated, to me, looks seriously awesome!

DOOM II Pain Elemental
Classic Doom II Pain Elemental.
DOOM Eternal Pain Elemental
DOOM: Eternal Pain Elemental.

Final thoughts on Classic Enemy Reintroduction

From what I can see, the five brand new enemies to the new DOOM titles (2016+), as seen above, really look nothing short of amazing. It seems id has really taken time to try and keep the retro-nostalgic feel to these enemies while updating them contextual to DOOM: Eternal. I hope you’re as excited as I am to see these brought back!

DOOM: Eternal Invasion Mode

From what I have seen, not much has been revealed about this play mode. The concept is exactly as it sounds, you can invade the single player campaign of people around the world and try and kill the doom slayer. You can choose between a select demon set. This is a 2 versus 1 style of deathmatch.

If executed well, I think this is a great change to the franchise, and offers players a fresh experience on DOOM multiplayer.

In conclusion, you can at the end of this video if you start the video at 16:40 (I’ve gone ahead and done that for you if you just press play) that two players join before the gameplay footage stops. What a teaser!

DOOM: Eternal Level Design

From what we get in early gameplay footage, it seems that the overall level design for DOOM: Eternal is much more open as compared to the level design in DOOM 2016. The latter did feature open environments, but this seems like a staple in DOOM: Eternal. This probably stems from the fact that it’s set on Earth just as classic Doom II. At the very least, this is evidenced by more vertical mobility in the game, featuring a new grappling hook.

DOOM: Eternal Movement & Grappling Hook

DOOM: Eternal Grappling Hook.
The new grappling hook featured on the the bottom of the double-barrel shotgun (super shotgun).

The grappling hook mechanic in DOOM: Eternal is another staple to the franchise as a whole. The vertical mobility it offers for doom guy to slay enemies are endless. Chaining together grapples can lead to some serious air time! Combined with double jumping and wall climbing, the movement in DOOM is better than ever.

Let’s not forget about the new strafing! The quick strafes that doom guy can now perform look amazing. This will offer players better defense from escaping close calls with enemies. Combined with the other new movement mechanics the overall gameplay in DOOM: Eternal compared to DOOM 2016 will be eons apart from each other.

DOOM: Eternal New Guns and Weapons

We won’t spend time looking at guns that have changed only visually, or that are not totally new to the franchise. With that out of the way, check these out.

DOOM: Eternal – Flamethrower

If they came from Hell, they should feel right at home.

DOOM: Eternal Flamethrower
The Flamethrower.




DOOM: Eternal – Heavy Cannon

Although very similar to DOOM 2016’s heavy assault rifle, it is actually a brand new gun and according to some sources is presumed to replace the heavy assault rifle. There are two additional modes the gun can be used in: “Precision bolt” for sniping; and mini-missiles that alternate when fired off of both sides of the weapon.

DOOM: Eternal Heavy Cannon
The Heavy Cannon.




Doom: Eternal – Doom Blade

Ready for some new and awesome glory kills? Then get ready for the doom blade.

DOOM: Eternal Doom Blade
The doom blade.




DOOM: Eternal – Shotgun

Alright, so… yeah it’s not a new weapon. But what kind of DOOM review doesn’t talk about the shotgun?! The one thing to mention here is that in DOOM: Eternal there is a mode for the shotgun that makes it an automatic weapon. Nuff said.

DOOM: Eternal Shotgun
Long live the shotgun.




DOOM: Eternal – Grenade Launcher

This is a presumption that some sources have talked about but has not yet been confirmed. That is to say, this is not the same weapon as the Rocket Launcher.

Final Thoughts on Teaser Trailers

Having watched the trailers a few times, I just want to play the game. At the beginning of this article I mentioned that my favorite Doom game ever is Doom II: Hell on Earth. Knowing that this is the second DOOM game in the new revamped DOOM titles… it makes me smile knowing it takes place on Earth. Just as Doom II: Hell on Earth was Doom I with more content, it seems like DOOM: Eternal is DOOM 2016 with more content, and I’m totally okay with that. The music still sounds great from what we hear in the trailers – thank you Mick Gordon. Speaking of Mick Gordon, if you missed this great GDC talk he gave on how he made the original music for DOOM 2016 you should check it out.

Mick Gordon, music producer for DOOM 2016 talks about how he worked on the project.

It seems to me that this installment, like the last, would make the 90’s id team proud. I can see John Romero and John Carmack smiling at its release, although Carmack will likely not say a word about the release ( https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2017/03/john-carmack-zenimax-owes-me-22-5m-as-part-of-2009-id-software-deal/ ). It will be interesting to see if the others comment on it. Romero on the other hand is a vocal dude, and was for DOOM 2016, which I don’t really see changing for this release.

Official DOOM: Eternal Story Trailer E3 2019

Your thoughts?

What are your thoughts on DOOM: Eternal up to this point? What excites you the most about this upcoming release? How do you see this release comparing with the last? What are your thoughts on the Invasion multiplayer mode? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!


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