Doom III
by Polly

Let me just get this out of the way. I wanna get rid of the idiot fuckbag mainstream casual gamers who think that every game has to be some fucking work of Shakespeare. Who think that story is the only thing that matters in gaming anymore and that 60 minute cutscenes should be some kind of standard by which all games should abide. I wanna get rid of you low life, non-thinking, consumer whore amoebas who believe that Halo 2 is some kind of fucking holy grail of gaming. I wanna kinda push you to the side and off the highest cliff in existence so I never have to hear your fanboyish yelps proclaiming your desires to suck Master Chief's hard robotic cock and swallow his thick, black, cockroach infested, motor oil semen. Halo was okay. Halo 2 fucking sucked. Go home.

Welcome! Welcome to my world of hate. Welcome to my home. Welcome to Hell. Welcome to your Doom.

Yes, it's Doom 3 for PC and guess what. It's good. It's damn good. Doom 3 is one of those rare treats for me that manages to do everything right. On the surface with its unbelievable graphics engine and the hype that went into it, Doom 3 was setting itself up for failure to me. I've never played a game that lived up to any hype that was so generously showered upon it. That is, until now.

Doom 3 isn't a game trying to tell a lavish and well thought-out story. That's not to say that there's not one there, because the game will slowly unravel a plot for you piece by piece either through small in game cutscenes or from documentation you'll find scattered throughout, contained in deceased peoples' left behind PDAs. More on those later. Simply, you're a nameless Marine sent to a Martian base to carry out your normal military duties when something goes terribly wrong unleashing twenty-nine different flavors of Hell upon the entire facility. It's not too long before you're waist deep in the undead, shooting anything and everything that moves, dreading whatever may be lurking behind the next door or around the next corner.

And this is the simplistic beauty that is Doom 3. The game knows what it is and doesn't try to pretend it's something else. You run into dark rooms and corridors gunning down some of the ugliest demons ever created for a first person shooter, proceed to the next area, mop up some more, maybe solve a simple puzzle and move on. Repetitive? Yes. Effective? Very.

What makes it so effective? Simple. The environment and atmosphere that this game presents. Doom 3 has some of the best environmental audio you will ever hear. It makes the experience completely believable. The ambient sounds of machinery bring the base (and possibly other locales...) to life and the distant growls and other unworldly audio cues that happen constantly will keep you on the edge of your seat wondering what the hell is in the room with you, or what's around that next corner. As you receive radio transmissions from your squad, and hear them losing the fight for their lives, it's hard to not be terrified yourself and maybe even feel sorry for the poor bastards. The acting is that well done. And you'll be immersed further by the audio as you pick up PDAs of recently killed victims and have a listen to their audio logs containing dictation of their strange experiences at the base. Combine that with the very claustrophobic and dark nature of the game's graphics and you've got some insane atmosphere that puts this game over the top in terms of "creep factor." My only quip with the audio is that the weapon sounds are very weak. But it's not such a big deal because dropping your own sounds in is a fairly easy process. (Right Click > Save As. You'll also need the XviD video codec).

Doom 3's action doesn't let up very much at all. There ARE times when the game will give you a breather and only taunt you making you think someone else is in the room with you. But for the most part, get used to enemies hiding behind every door, sneaking up behind you through doors you just came through, and dropping from the ceiling, scaring the living shit out of you. Their AI isn't great. All enemies seem programmed to just home in on the position of the player and unload with whatever's in their arsenal. And it works because of the simple run and gun nature of the game. The enemies in this game don't need complex AI to get the job done. It makes for some very simplistic shooty fun, which is exactly what I think the game was going for. You'll come across a nice selection of weapons, all of which are pretty fun to use and ammo isn't too scarce. The Shotgun, Chaingun, Plasma Rifle, and the BFG all make their return and are remixed and brought into the new setting very nicely. Only the grenades seem a bit worthless due to how they work. If you throw one and contact with an enemy, it'll explode instantly If you miss the damn thing bounces around like it's having a fucking seizure which is OFTEN bad for you because the damn things seem to explode at the most inopportune times. But, eh. I haven't played one FPS yet that doesn't have a shitty weapon nobody wants to use.

I could go on and on about the dynamic lighting effects, and the prettiness of all the other graphics in the game but you already know about that stuff by now. I could whine about how dark it is and how you can't hold a flashlight and shoot a gun at the same time, but it's a irrelevent and if you want to ruin the experience by using patches, then that's your business. The fact is that Doom 3 is a simple, old-schoolish, run and gun first person shooter that helps carry on the legacy of the originals while adding a lot of flair. This game caters heavily to the original fans of the series, so those expecting something on a grand scale or something other than "kill shit" need to just move on. iD didn't latch on to new school FPS gimmicks and for that I applaud them greatly.

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