Doom: A Trip Through 20 Years!
series is one of the staple first person shooter games to revolutionize a genre which gamers have been hacking away at for 20 years now. Doom
epitomised the whole genre with its quirky graphics, fun gameplay and gory imagery. The game is entering its 20th anniversary and we will take a journey through history to see how this game made the first person genre what it is.
is considered one of the most significant and influential titles in the video game industry, for having ushered in the popularity of the first-person shooter genre. Doom
was played by an estimated ten million people just two years after launch and I would love to know how many people have played and owned the game in the last twenty years. The game is divided into three nine-level episodes and the player assume the role of a space marine that was popularly known as the “Doom guy” who battles through the levels fighting through waste upon wave of evil enemies. The Ultimate Doom
, an updated release of the original game featuring a fourth episode, was released in 1995 where the original was released on the MSDOS or Windows platform in 1993. Being a FPS game, Doom
is experienced through the eyes of main player character though this character is not named throughout the game which makes the game feel more personal. The lead developer of the game has said ”There was never a name for the DOOM marine because it's supposed to be you. Maybe this lead to how popular the “first person” genre became? Putting you, the player behind the person in the game rather than him being another being that is named and has its own personality." The objective of each level is simply to locate the exit room that leads to the next area, marked with an "EXIT" and/or a special kind of door, while surviving all hazards like a wide array of horrible looking enemies on the way .
My first memories of Doom
came a little later than the original however. I remember my dad asking me and my brother what console we wanted for Christmas. I stated I wanted the N64 with such classic titles as The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
and Super Mario 64
whereas my brother opted for the PS1 sporting popular titles Metal Gear Solid
and Crash Bandicoot
. Well I remember the deal for the N64 was with a copy of Doom 64
and being a young kid that had never played a FPS game before I was shocked at just how addictive and immersed I became with the game. I can think back to the countless hours spent ploughing through the levels and becoming infuriated when I got stuck and had no idea how to progress. We have to remember this was a long way before the internet so there was no FAQs or cheats. The series caused a lot of controversy over its time due to featuring high levels of violence and satanic imagery. Due to being released before the internet the game hit the media spotlight across all mediums and generated lots of controversy from a broad range of groups. Yahoo have even listed it as one of the top ten most controversial games of all time showing just how dark the game was.
The popularity of Doom
led to the development of multiple expansion packs and alternate versions based on the original game engine, including The Ultimate Doom
(1995), Final Doom
(1996), and Doom 64
was so popular in fact it has been released on literally every console since its inception in 1993 and also was released on the steam platform in 2007 for PC gamers to enjoy. One thing that also made the game hugely popular was the ability to “mod” the levels in the game. Users could use WAD files to create custom levels and mod the game which turned out to be a huge hit among nodders and a time spending past time for fans of the game. Several game designers started their careers making Doom
WADs as a hobby including developer Tim Willits who later became the lead designer at id Software. The first modded levels appeared in early 1994, and additional tools have since been created that allow most aspects of the game to be edited making the user have the ability to add their own personal touches to the iconic game. You can shoot over HERE
and check out some of the most awesome mods made over the years and start off that nostalgia trip!
When we look over the current match winners of the first person shooter genre you can quite clearly see the influence from Doom
. The way you progress through levels and the way you battle hordes of enemies can be seen in such titles as Halo
, Planetside 2
, Call of Duty
, and many others, with the only differences being the graphically superior quality of next gen, PC, and the difference in story lines. The game sits high atop the mantle of the first person shooter genre and just writing this article has made me want to download the Steam version to relive it over once again. I’m sure many of you are fans of the game and if so I recommend just spending 20 seconds reliving some of those special moments you have tearing up the enemies from hell. The Doom 4
project was scrapped early this year though Tim Willits said the game is still “the team's focus” leading to the internet demanding a new title and patient fans waiting for an announcement. Like me though, you may even fancy a little re-visit of the original some time after reading this and jogging those memories.