E3 Madness - Doom Eternal
We're a couple of days and/or weeks removed from E3 madness, and while gamers, journalists and influencers from all over the world are still roaming the halls in Los Angeles playing the latest upcoming titles, the rest of us are left to stew over everything we've seen. And there was a lot! Playstation hit us with Gameplay from some of the absolute gems of their first party studios while new studios acquisitions graced Microsoft's stage alongside Xbox tentpoles and Nintendo dropped Smash. All of Smash. So. Much. Smash.
This is the first real E3 we've been able to experience together at The Arcade Vaults, so we thought it'd be fun to hear from some of our friends, volunteers and regulars about the industries biggest event!
I'm now in my 30's. Why am I telling you? Well, because I remember when I was a lad my dad would often take me to a rental store to rent video games, and on one such occasion we rented Doom for the Super Nintendo. It seemed so unassuming, that SNES cartridge rattling around in a VHS case, but little did I know that this game marked the rise of a bold new genre: the first person shooter. Other FPS's came before Doom of course (like Wolfenstein), but Doom arguably stole the show with its mix of gory violence, isolated setting (can't get more isolated than Mars) and ridiculous plot. As the years wore on I enjoyed my fair share of FPS games, and as expected they became much more technically sophisticated than that bold little demon shooter. For a while, though, I felt like the genre lost its way somehow and I didn't really get excited about any new FPS releases for years.
Fast forward to 2016 and Bethesda rides in on a magic Hell Stallion to show us all how it's done with their 2016 reboot of Doom. Now, I'm late to the party for sure, but at the time of E3 this year I was playing Doom (2016) for the first time and I can confidently say it may be the most satisfying FPS gaming experience I've ever had. It captures and amplifies everything that made the original so fun to play – the ridiculousness fortitude and brutality of Doomguy, the over-the-top splatterfest violence, the absurd campaign plotline of demonic invasion…I could go on. It was great to see all the old monsters given new life and more variety; they were just so different from each other and this made them more interesting to fight. Most of all, the combat was fluid, frenetic, and fun.
When I found out there was going to be a sequel before I completed Doom (2016) I was hyped. From the teaser we were given it seems like Doom Eternal is following right in the footsteps of Doom II in that it takes place on Earth after it has been completely overrun by the forces of Hell. We're treated to a swooping camera shot of giant tentacles crushing buildings, broken pieces of skyscrapers suspended in a reddened sky, demons prowling through the rubble, and finally Doomguy's boot crushing a demon's skull before pointing the super shotgun (appropriately) at a snarling horde. The trailer also rather gloriously shows off the fact that the game boasts some new monsters (I see that Pain Elemental and those Arachnotrons, Bethesda), meaning we can expect even more varied combat. Not only that but we got a statement from the creative director that there will be twice the number of monsters as before and an even more powerful Doomguy to slay them with. It's not immediately clear if he meant there'll be twice the number of monster variants or a monster horde that's simply twice the size but either way the prospect is enticing.
There's no definite release date yet but I will be keeping a close eye on that "TBA", and an even closer eye on the minimum system requirements to be sure my PC can handle it when it finally splashes down.
When Jody Fellows isn't blasting hell's minions (you think we're talking about Doom right?) you'll find him hanging out at The Arcade Vaults events. Blasting hell's minions.