Doom 3 Review

Developer: Vicarious Visions Publisher: Activision
Release Date: April 3, 2005 Also On: PC

Known mostly as a classic PC game, the Xbox is now doomed. Doom 3 finally made its leap into the next generation on the PC in 2004. Now, we have a console version that those who cannot afford gaming PCs to enjoy Doom in its majesty. While most ports from the PC aren’t nearly as good on the consoles, Doom 3 has a great transfer to the platform and shows why ports don’t have to stink. With a few new additions from the PC version, Doom 3 should be a fan favorite.

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Doom 3 is state of the art visually. Matched only by Chaos Theory, lighting and shadow tie into the game’s engine amazingly. Adding to the realism of hell taking over Mars is the outstanding level design throughout the entire game. Bump and texture mappings galore throughout the vast world you play in. Blood even shoots everywhere, staining the walls violently and realistically.

Character models are possibly the best in gaming period. While there is a lack of variety in the demons you face, the humans are very diverse. Whether it is their ethnicity or facial structure, you get a different look on each person you encounter during gameplay. The distinct realism of facial expressions and movement add to the list of accomplishments Doom achieves. Individual pores are distinct, making patterns within the face quite easy to change. I am just waiting for someone to sprout a pimple.

Added with the sound, Doom is on par with many other horror titles such as The Suffering, Fatal Frame, and Resident Evil. Playing it in surround sound will easily make you look over your shoulder at least once, and definitely make you jump out of your seat when something pops out. Sound ties into the gameplay a lot, clueing you in on many strange things throughout Mars Station that are going on. Voiceovers during cut scenes don’t seem to be that great. While the voices tie in well with the characters, they don’t sync very well with the mouths of the people in the game.

Doom 3 has been well adapted for the Xbox Controller from the PC. It plays like most first person shooters do, only shooting is a little less refined. Shooting sometimes is a bit sporadic, making it hard to aim and shoot while in motion. Hand to hand combat is okay, but it is nothing compared to the likes of Riddick’s combat engine. Fighting with your hands really doesn’t work that well when fighting demons anyway. Your weapon assortment is rather large, though most are fairly ineffective. You may hover around a selected few to mow down demons. These weapons would be the shotgun, assault rifle, and chainsaw. Some bosses are quite challenging, but they are beatable if you are will to take multiple tries at the task.

There are two versions of Doom 3 on the market that really change the way you choose to play. There is Co-Op through the actual campaign, but you need the Collector’s Edition in order to play it through split screen. Having rented Doom 3, I didn’t have the luxury of actually testing this out. Online Co-Op is fairly decent though if you actually work together with the one you’re playing with.

The multiplayer is just the bare minimum in shooter. There are actually more maps than types of play. You only have death match and team death match to test your skills against the rest of the world. Not only that, but shooting wasn’t made for the run and gun shooting the multiplayer offers. You really can’t get off many great shots on your opponent and will become aggravated when being mowed down by players who get the jump on you.

If you pay the extra ten dollars, you will really get a lot more out of Doom 3. The Collector’s Edition not only brings split screen, but also Ultimate Doom and Doom 2 that were originally only available on the PC. These games also have multiplayer that will keep you interested for a while. The normal edition of Doom 3 however is really only good for people with Xbox Live. Campaign is still a good 15-20 hours, but it does grow tiresome after a while. All you have to do is pop demons that keep popping out behind walls and doors that get kind of old after a while. If you have the extra money and want to buy Doom, go with the Collector’s Edition, especially if you don’t have Live.

Graphics: 10
Sound: 9
Gameplay: 7.5
Creativity: 7
Replay Value/Game Length: 8.5
Final: 8.5
Written by Shawn Review Guide

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