DOOM Eternal released earlier this year on PS4, Xbox One and PC but Nintendo Switch owners have been eagerly awaiting the release of the Nintendo Switch version. Prior to the game’s release date being announced (it’s coming out next week), we had the chance to talk to Senior Producer, Cody Nicewarner and Lead Engineer, Travis Archer from Panic Button about the struggles and successes of bringing the game over to the Switch.
Will the game be released both digitally and physically?
Panic Button: DOOM Eternal launches across the globe, digitally on Nintendo Switch on December 8th
We recently saw the release of the first expansion on consoles/PC, will this come to Switch?
Panic Button: We will be bringing the campaign DLC, The Ancient Gods, to the Switch next year. We’ll have more details on the release timings in the future.
What have been some of the challenges of bringing this to the Switch over the original? What are the compromises when it comes to graphics and performance?
Panic Button: The main challenge of bringing Doom Eternal to the Switch, compared to DOOM (2016), is that this is simply a much more demanding title. DOOM Eternal takes advantage of the newest PC hardware and leverages id’s past experience to squeeze the absolute most out of the current generation PlayStation and Xbox consoles. Fitting the game on the Switch was therefore significantly more work. In terms of graphical details, our aim was to deliver resolution and performance that compares to the work we did on DOOM (2016), Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus, and Wolfenstein: Youngblood, and we’re excited about how it turned out.
It’s taken a bit longer than expected, why the delays? Was there ever a time during development that you thought it might not make it out?
Panic Button: It has been stated in the past by id Software themselves that DOOM Eternal is the most ambitious project they have ever taken on and we couldn’t agree more! From the initial kickoff we knew the project was going to be challenging, but with our experience working on previous titles (as mentioned, DOOM (2016) and the Wolfenstein titles), and the existing relationships with the team at id, we were confident that we could deliver a quality product to the Nintendo Switch community and in doing so we took the extra time needed to make sure we met those expectations.
We are also experiencing what many other studios have had to face in 2020 with Coronavirus. As we moved to a work from home setting we had to adapt, learn quickly to work as efficiently as possible, while keeping our employees healthy. We worked very closely with id Software and Bethesda during 2020 to help ensure the release of DOOM Eternal on Switch and we are excited to finally get it out to that audience.
What are some of the Switch specific features?
Panic Button: We added a motion aiming option we’re really proud of that allows you to aim using gyro controls. The option can be used in conjunction with the control stick and has been tuned for the perfect blend of immersion and accuracy. We also spent time increasing the legibility of the UI to improve the quality in Handheld mode.
Is multiplayer included in Doom Eternal on Switch?
Panic Button: Yes! The Nintendo Switch version is a full translation of the core Battlemode experience. All features and accessibility options are available at launch.
We’ve seen a few games on the Switch come in Cloud versions recently. Was this ever looked into?
Panic Button: We think this is an interesting technology and are keeping an eye on it for now. We enjoy the flexibility of being able to install DOOM Eternal and take it on the go though, whether that’s on or off the grid.
With the next-gen consoles releasing, do you think it’s going to become even harder to port games to the Switch?
Panic Button: I think it really depends on the title. Some will obviously be more challenging than others. We look forward to the opportunity of bringing next generation titles to the Nintendo Switch!
Doom Eternal releases on Nintendo Switch on December 8th.