NINTENDO SWITCH IMPRESSIONS
It’s great to see that Bethesda didn’t miss any stops on bringing DOOM to the Switch. You’ve also got Arcade mode as well as the full Multiplayer experience which both run as expected. Currently, the multiplayer lobbies are full of people which is really great to see. Whilst the size of the Switch screen covers a lot of blemishes, playing on my 65″ TV definitely didn’t do the game any favours, with textures looking all over the place. If you’re looking to play mostly portable, then I’d absolutely recommend picking up the Switch version, but if you play mostly in front of your TV, then you may be better off opting for another version.
After 12 years since Doom 3, Doom has returned to fill your demon-slaying needs. In this stunning revival, the Union Aerospace Corporation’s research facility has been overwhelmed, by you guessed it, fierce demons. Obviously, you’re the lone space marine who has one task, to kill them all. Doom’s story hasn’t hugely progressed since the original Doom and it serves its purpose nicely without getting in the way of the fast-paced and frantic gameplay. There aren’t a lot of cutscenes and missions are briefed in the loading screen, but once again, it isn’t an amazing story but it doesn’t really matter. It’s almost refreshing that a FPS game in this day and age can deliver such a simple story in such a concise manner, and it’s a wonderful callback to the old school shooters that eschewed story over solid gameplay.
Doom is incredibly stylish and visually appealing in a number of ways. The variety of the designs in the demons and weapons are incredible and really bring this game into 2016 perfectly. However, a lot of the environmental elements don’t look as anywhere as good as other games, but luckily this is made up in the sheer amount of gore and violence that will absolutely delight fans of Doom and the wider FPS genre. The game runs at a solid 60FPS which is incredibly important.
Whilst the visuals are lacking in some areas, the soundtrack is absolutely perfect. It’s intense and really does well to build up the big moments in the game. I must recommend that you wear headphones whilst playing as it’s a genuine delight listening to the up-beat soundtrack whilst slaying demons.
The other thing I will say on the presentation front is that the game takes quite a long time to load in-between death. I’m talking about 15-20 seconds, which does take you out of the experience, and considering how often you will be dying, it would have been nice to have this sped up. Another major issue is that you literally have to basically quit in and out of the game in order to switch between single player, multiple and SnapMap. Whilst it isn’t a huge issue, it’s something that I personally haven’t seen in a game in many years.
I’ve never been the biggest Doom fan, and honestly didn’t have too many expectations coming into the game, but I was pleasantly surprised. This game isn’t for everyone, there isn’t a whole lot massive set pieces, cutscenes or narrative in general, but it makes up for this in sheer action-packed gameplay. You’re able to just shoot demons and be immersed in action from start to finish, without having to put the controller down to watch 10 minutes of cutscenes in between each fire-fight. The game requires you to move around constantly in order to avoid enemy attack.
SnapMap is a huge part of the new Doom game. It allows you to basically design your own levels with customised weapons and enemy placement. There is already a ton of great levels uploaded and I can really see myself spending a decent amount of time. It really is the Mario Maker for FPS. Doom is the perfect game for this, as it prides itself on being difficult, so the options are endless when it comes to creating extremely challenging levels.
Multiplayer is the fast-paced arena-styled gameplay that you’d expect. You’ve got your classic arsenal of weapons as well as a number of power-ups and power weapons and it’s every bit as insane as the single-player mode. Team Deathmatch and Clan Arena will feel extremely familiar to FPS players and Doom players alike. Things get more interesting in modes like Soul Harvest in which you must collect souls of the enemies that you have taken down in order to score. It’s a serviceable multiplayer but it’s not nearly as good as the single player component, and having loadouts in a Doom game is just a pure sin. The movement feels more sluggish and slow paced, and outside of everyone having rocket launchers it doesn’t feel too satisfying. There are some shining moments but the two development teams really shows here, as the multiplayer is quite drastically different to single player.