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The Icon Bar: News and features: Review - Doom

Review - Doom

Posted by Richard Goodwin on 00:00, 30/10/2000 | , ,


Classic walkabout shoot'em up from RCI. Reviewed by Richard Goodwin and Alasdair Bailey.

Well, you all know the story. Doom is undeniably the most popular, the most enduring computer game of the nineties. Released initially in 1992, with Doom II and The Ultimate Doom (Doom with one additional episode: Thy Flesh Consumed) following in quick succession, the game has captivated and inspired a generation of would-be genocidal lunatics. With the the release of Final Doom, the last two episodes of the saga, and the 3000 level collection, by professional and amateur level designers alike, the trilogy is complete. R-Comp have it for us, at last, as a boxed collector set, which will also run on the PC.

Doom was the final result of the project that Wolfenstein 3D was the halfway stage of; a first-person view of a 3D world in which you can wander anywhere, dispatching enemies with a variety of weaponry which you pick up in your travels. This itself led on to the far more sophisticated Quake and Quake 2, but many still play Doom. Why? Read on...


[Screenshot!]Some people can't see what all the fuss is about; it's a four-year-old game that's been out on every other platform you can think of, but that is like saying that the Mona Lisa is an ages old picture that's been on postcards for years, so why bother seeing the real thing? Doom is a classic - it wouldn't have come out on platforms like the Playstation without the Suits knowing they'd get a good return (and it sold out every week for the first two months of its release), and it's still in the shops for the PC. This is the genuine article, often imitated but never bettered - until it was superseded by the same software company bringing out Quake.
[Screenshot!]The world moves around you, and this makes for a terrifically exciting and involving game, as you find yourself trying to dodge out of the way of bullets as if this would affect your computer player. You can actually see your gun recoil as it's fired, and the bullets hit your enemy (or cut them in half!); as such it's got a 15 rating, so it's only for the older gamers.

The Acorn version, a long time in development, is an excellent conversion - as long as you have a high-specification Risc PC. It'll play reasonably on a Risc PC, but a Strong ARM makes it so much better. With 2MB of Video RAM you can play it full-screen in 640x400 - better than the PC - or in the desktop up to about 1024x768. You can drop out of a fullscreen game into the desktop to do something else and the game carries on playing; it's not just a great game, but also a good test of what a Risc PC can do. Of course on an ARM 600 or 700 machine you're looking at playing it in the standard resolution outside the desktop, and possibly making the playing area a little smaller to improve the speed.

Niggles include the lack of music - you have to buy some kind of MIDI player, either a proper MIDI interface and keyboard (costly) or a software emulator (quite cheap, but adds to the amount of loading on your processor), but this isn't really necessary and can't detract from one of the greatest games of all time - just buy it. NOW!




[Screenshot!]The Acorn Doom front-end is very easy to use. On double-clicking on its icon, a window pops up into which the level file you want to play is dragged. Then there are options to change the keys, mouse and display options and then it's just a matter of clicking Play and the game starts to load. The display control dialogue box is quite simple to use for the advanced user but I would have liked to have seen a pull down menu for the screen resolution setting rather than the pair of writable icons which were used. My other main criticism of the front-end program is the lack of advanced options such as those present in some other versions, for example and option to re-spawn the monsters after they've been killed.

With regard to speed and framerates, Acorn Doom is playable on an ARM600/700 in the default 320*256 resolution and maintains a just about playable framerate in this resolution in 16 million colours on my ARM700 RiscPC. An option to switch off all sound processing, however, would speed things up on the slower machines but this is, unfortunately, not present in the Acorn version. Whilst on the subject of sound, the in-game music will not play unless you have MIDI hardware or emulation installed on your machine. This is a pity, as the music tracks could have quite easily been converted to a native Acorn music format such as 'Digital Symphony' but this, apparently, would have caused problems with standard Doom add-on levels and patches from the PC version of the game.

[Screenshot!]At the moment, the Acorn Doom player doesn't feature any support for network/internet multiplayer modes. This is a big disappointment since games such as Doom and its counterpart, Quake, really come into their own when played against other human opponents. However, R-Comp have said that Acorn-Acorn serial, network and internet multiplay will be available through a freely downloadable patch on their www site in a few week's time.


To sum up

The good...
  • The best selling game ever
  • Playable on lower end RiscPC's
  • Very addictive
...the bad
  • No multiplayer (yet)
  • Lack of music without extra hardware
  • Slows down noticeably on bigger levels


Rating: OKRating: GOODRating: COOL


  Review - Doom
  (17:58 8/6/2004)
  Jani (11:40 23/7/2004)
    Brandon Geyer (18:46 31/1/2006)
      ronaldinho (16:36 17/3/2006)
        DoomFan1 (12:10 21/3/2006)
          Ian Gordon (17:35 21/3/2006)
            jimbo (15:22 5/4/2006)
              axe_l (23:18 8/4/2006)
                nathan (14:19 10/4/2006)
                  Bajsefar (00:12 12/4/2006)
                    Evolution (14:37 14/4/2006)
                      fred (01:16 17/4/2006)
                        Razor (19:19 30/4/2006)
                          aGirl (23:07 30/4/2006)
                            Denisio (00:22 7/5/2006)
                              matt (01:37 9/5/2006)
                                CERBERUS (19:57 12/5/2006)
                                  Irreligious (19:59 12/5/2006)
matt bailey Message #87887, posted at 17:58, 8/6/2004
Unregistered user dooms fun, but your type on the review is to small to read!
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
Jani Message #87888, posted at 11:40, 23/7/2004, in reply to message #87887
Unregistered user doom i,ts best game
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
Brandon Geyer Message #87889, posted at 18:46, 31/1/2006, in reply to message #87888
Unregistered user ive been playing this game ever since i was little and it has never gotten old for me and im now 15
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
ronaldinho Message #87890, posted at 16:36, 17/3/2006, in reply to message #87889
Unregistered user the best fucking game ever
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
DoomFan1 Message #87891, posted at 12:10, 21/3/2006, in reply to message #87890
Unregistered user Ya doom is fun I got a game or thing call Remake doom.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
Ian Gordon Message #87892, posted at 17:35, 21/3/2006, in reply to message #87891
Unregistered user Damm. Doom is the greatest ever! i've been playing it since i was 4, i'm 16 now, and its still my favourite game ever! The music still sends chills down my spine and ever time i hear something remotly like an imp i get ready2 take my double barreled shotgun out! Anyone who wants2 chat about doom please take my email and send me an email!
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
Jim White Message #87893, posted by jimbo at 15:22, 5/4/2006, in reply to message #87892
Member What sort of review is this??? There is no "BAD" in this game. This game was part of the gaming revolution. This was a stepping stone. It's like saying that early humans were bad because they didn't have language developed to our extend. If it wasn't for the early humans, we wouldn't be here. Doom shouldn't be reviewed as good/bad. It's an ICON, not to be messed with !!!
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
axe_l Message #87894, posted at 23:18, 8/4/2006, in reply to message #87893
Unregistered user DOOM one word no more needs to be said if u have ever played this game you will have nno need to read the rest. This is amazing graphics perfect sound perfect game play perfect who can say any less? If u can i beg to differ.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
nathan Message #87895, posted at 14:19, 10/4/2006, in reply to message #87894
Unregistered user me and my friends chose this game to play over halo2 that says something about the game.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
Bajsefar Message #87896, posted at 00:12, 12/4/2006, in reply to message #87895
Unregistered user Damn! i want the ingame music of doom 2 in mp3!
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
Evolution Message #87897, posted at 14:37, 14/4/2006, in reply to message #87896
Unregistered user Like doom? Try the multiplay hires Doom port they call Zdaemon. www.zdaemon.org
Also try skulltag, modern doom. www.skulltag.com
Then theres Zdoom, the most stable engine for doom. www.zdoom.org

You will love doom MORE!!
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
fred Message #87898, posted at 01:16, 17/4/2006, in reply to message #87897
Unregistered user DOOM IS FUCKIN AMAZING! i started playin this wen i woz 4 im 15 now an i still bloody love it! there is no bad about this game if u think there is u shud get a life this started off all the fps's u see 2day
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
Razor Message #87899, posted at 19:19, 30/4/2006, in reply to message #87898
Unregistered user Thee Best Game Ever I Love Doom 3 But When I Play The Old Versons I Use Somthing Called J Doom It Makes Everything In The Game 3D It Makes It Like It's Brand New Again And There Is More Gore On Top Of All That Good Shit. DOOM WILL NEVER DIE!!!!
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
aGirl Message #87900, posted at 23:07, 30/4/2006, in reply to message #87899
Unregistered user Awesome game, fell in love with it when i was 14.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
Denisio Message #87901, posted at 00:22, 7/5/2006, in reply to message #87900
Unregistered user I've also played doom sinds i was a little dude, im 15 now and im still doing it. im now playing doom 3 and ive got to say that its one of the best games ever :D
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
matt Message #87902, posted at 01:37, 9/5/2006, in reply to message #87901
Unregistered user omg doom is awsome i love it i played it last year and i could not stop playing DOOM ROCKS lol
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
CERBERUS Message #87903, posted at 19:57, 12/5/2006, in reply to message #87902
Unregistered user This is the best game I ever played!
The grafics, sound, gameplay are awsome.
I don't care if people say "This is the worse game ever" I say that this is the best!
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
Irreligious Message #87904, posted at 19:59, 12/5/2006, in reply to message #87903
Unregistered user I started playing this game when i was 4. Now I'm 15 and still love this game. For me, this game is getting better and better!
  ^[ Log in to reply ]

The Icon Bar: News and features: Review - Doom