Yes, I know, I know… You can’t believe I haven’t played this one yet but hey, better late than never, right? I finally played through DOOM Eternal and I enjoyed most of it actually. DOOM Eternal is a boomer shooter that came out last year and I got it earlier this year actually in a sale, I believe, really enjoyed the first two levels. After that, however, I didn’t pick it up again for a second play session because the mouse + keyboard controls were too complicated. Instead, I played through it on stream over the past few weeks and I really enjoyed it because of the magical device named “gamepad”. Who would have thought that a gamepad’s actually kind of good in a shooter? I would have never attempted to use it here as mouse and keyboard’s usually a lot more reliable… but nobody cares about headshots in DOOM and I wouldn’t hit them anyway.
Anyways, SPOILERS. BIG SPOILERS. Nobody cares? Good! But in case you did care, you’ve been warned!
From the getgo, DOOM Eternal is dripping with… the drip. The main character, the Slayer/Doomguy, is a badass Sentinel that comes down from a space station and fucks up demons that are taking over the world. I was familiar with the original DOOM games’ story… Doom Guy is killing all the demons because they murdered his pet rabbit, Daisy,… and all the other humans. But who cares about those? Now, people weren’t super sure if that’s still canon or if DOOM 2016 and DOOM Eternal are separate games… but then with some lore here and some references there, id Software basically confirmed that it is still canon. Hell yeah! The Slayer and the Doom Guy are the same person. Lore’s similar… though more fleshed out. I actually like the lore in Doom Eternal quite a bit.
Now, when I said that the game’s got a lot of the drip, I meant it. I started with the good lore and the badass main character but the game looks beautiful, runs smoothly, and the glory kills you can perform to kick, punch, shoot, stab, slice, explode, and feed demons until they die are… well,… glorious. DOOM Eternal is beautiful in the most bloody epic way possible and it allowed me to enjoy myself to the fullest while I was making sure that the enemy can’t enjoy themselves for long. All of that beautiful mess of gore and splatter is accompanied by an amazing soundtrack made by Mick Gordon. From “Hell on Earth”, “Doom Eternal”, and “Mars Core” to “Kalibas The Sightless Judge”, “BFG Division 2020” and “Massive Demonic Presence”, Mick Gordon delivers what could well be described as an eargasm for every fan of in-your-face metal. It’s just epic to blast through hordes of enemies while the music blasts through your ears… and honestly, just listen to the soundtrack yourself. It’s great.
And well, there’s also the gunplay, the many secrets, the boss fights and a whole lot of cool abilities such as runes that allow you to perform glory kills from further away, a flame belch that sets enemies ablaze, a blood punch that does massive amounts of damage, and other cool gimmicks… and DOOM Eternal has, in essence, a lot of super cool features and mechanics that make the game well worth it. I had some issues here and there, as well though that made the experience not super fun near the end.
For starters, I was playing the game on “Hurt me Plenty” since I was new to the game at that point but the initial encounters were challenging but not too challenging, which was nice. The later the game went on, however, the more frustrating encounters became. I mean, I had this one enemy there called the Marauder who’s effectively super strong and has a very annoying pattern. Pair that with not all weapons working against him and enemies spawning around you… and you’re in for a treat. Hence, I had a hard time against that enemy… but what if the game also spawns in other strong enemies at the same time? And now imagine a boss fight that gives you a lot of trouble, like the Doom Hunter, and then you end up having to fight two at the same time directly afterwards… and in later levels, you get the Gladiator and other bosses like that.
The game can get pretty frustrating due to the sudden increase in difficulty and I feel like they could have smoothened out the difficulty quite a bit, potentially. Similarly, I had a huge issue with how satisfying the second last fight was in contrast to the last fight. The last fight/the final boss is super badly made. You fight against a huge creature of sorts and it just feels not all that fun or engaging at all. It’s a really tedious fight that you cannot avoid and in the end, it feels anti-climactic, especially because of the huge robot suit that you have in your home base as a teaser. I’d think that we’d fight a titan or multiple titans in that suit later on if it gets teased like that but for whatever reason, that’s not the case at all and after the great fight against the Khan Makyr, we just fight against this Icon of Sin and get a super anti-climactic end… followed by super long credits… and some cute yet funny post-credit scene that made me happy.
Now, while the difficulty curve was steep, it was part of the experience. Master the game and you’ll have no issues with that at all… but this wasn’t even the hardest difficulty yet, so I’ll have to see what the harder difficulties will be like. A bigger issue I had was the PvP mode that is okay… but I would have loved to play a Co-Op mode with friends maybe. I mean, Serious Sam 3: BFE came out in 2011 and had Co-Op. Some of the enemies look like they came straight out of DOOM Eternal… and the levels are built similarly with the gameplay formula essentially consisting of the same boomer shooter rip and tear mechanics. I don’t know why DOOM Eternal can’t have a horde mode that you can play with friends. They kinda missed out on shipping that as a DLC here… Oh well.
But in the end, it’s a great game. I’m late with this but hey, if you look ripping and tearing enemies apart, fucking buy this game already and play it. Don’t mind the spoilers. You won’t care.