It was the month of May 2016 when id Software and Bethesda launched Doom, which meant the return of one of the most iconic series of first-person shooters. This return captures the essence of the original titles and updating it to offer us one of the best first-person shooting games of recent times.
After a four-year wait, Doom is now back with Doom Eternal, a new installment that we have already been able to test in-depth and that offers us many hours of fun to give us, in our eyes, the best shooter we are going to play in a long time, improving what they already offered us in 2016 to give us the best title that id Software has launched in the last decade.
A sweet and bloody joy
As soon as we begin our adventures with Doom Eternal we already realize that it is a wild, thug, fun, frantic game (yes, more than the previous installment), which keeps us glued to the screen making all kinds of massacres for, in the end, be aware of “the one we have bundled,” reviewing in our heads the large number of demons that we have hit, shot, cut, burned and, in short, sending the afterlife filling our clothes with blood and guts.
To make a basic summary, in Doom Eternal, you explore the maps, you make your way to a specific room, and you begin shooting until you practically run out, ending each slaughter of demons with a melee. You continuously enjoy the feeling of triumph, the frenzy of battle.
To achieve these massacres, in addition to the excellent shooting mechanics that characterize id Software games, we must also master specific mechanics typical of Doom Eternal, with special emphasis on its three fundamental pillars which, for the one who writes you, are the executions, crush enemies with the chainsaw or watch them burn and consume thanks to the effective use of our flamethrower.
As many of you will remember, executing enemies when they are almost lifeless (and highlighted with striking colours) is worth it for them to throw blue balls to regain health, if we cut them using the chainsaw (as long as we have it with gasoline) we will recover ammunition and if we burn them using the flamethrower they give us armour. Alternating between these three mechanics in the middle of each battle and depending on our needs is one of the key and decisive factors if we want to survive the hell that it proposes.
A complete arsenal to puree demons
In our journey to puree all the demons, we have an extensive arsenal made up of 9 different weapons such as the shotgun, heavy cannon, plasma rifle, or other more advanced tools to kill that we unlock over time. Each of these weapons is especially effective against particular creatures, so knowing which one to use at all times and switching between them intelligently is another crucial part of this shooter
The weapons have different modifications that we can unlock during the game, allowing us to add special powers to each of them that are very useful for combat. Although at the beginning all the modifications can be done along with other customization options that we will talk about later, the truth is that as we move forward, we realize that these modifications are useful, not as complicated as they might seem at first. They do not take away from the game the most important thing: maintaining a high rate of action.
In addition to the nine weapons, we will also have in our power two different types of grenades, the classic fragmentation that will explode in front of our enemies and a second one that will allow us to freeze them, gaining very important seconds in which to damage them or, simply, ignore them during a few moments to deal with other threats in the room.
Just a few lines ago, we were talking about the modifications of the weapons. Now it is time to do it about other elements that allow us to personalize our experience since in Doom Eternal it gives us the possibility of investing points in improving the suit (to make it more resistant) to traps or upgrade built-in grenades), or to our character through runes or sentinel crystals.
They are the latter the most important since they allow us to increase our life, armour or the ability to store more ammunition to be armed to the teeth and not have to use the chainsaw as often. We are not going to talk to you one by one of all the improvements for our character or costume present in the game. Still, it is convenient to point out the same thing that we said just a couple of paragraphs ago, and that is that, although they can overwhelm us when they are presented to us, Almost one after another, during the beginning of Doom Eternal, the truth is that they are very useful during our adventure, that they do not interrupt the action at any time and that they are simpler than it seems at first.
Traversal jumps has arrived.
We have not told you so far about movement and how important this factor is in Doom Eternal, a game in which knowing how to move will be essential if we want to complete it, not only because it is necessary to proceed with agility to dodge the shots of the enemies, but also because it has some sections somewhat platform that serve to test our ability and also to give us a break between the rooms crowded with demonic creatures.
Within the mechanics of movement in Doom Eternal, we find a double jump and also a race, impulse or dash that allows us to move forward, backward or sideways very quickly, in just a breath—as in all previous mechanics, learning to use it and end up mastering it will be essential.
Long, deep, well-designed levels full of secrets
Another essential aspect in any good self-respecting shooter is its levels, and in Doom Eternal they shine with their light in all its sections, both at a playable level and at an artistic level, finding us with well-executed designs to take advantage of all the mechanics of the game without losing a visual appeal of aúpa in the rooms, its walls or all the decorative details that we find in them.
Each level is a kind of great maze with many secrets, traps and challenges that invite us to explore and replay it over and over again. Also, to achieve the improvements described above, sometimes we must access hidden places for each map, something that we can only do if we are very attentive to all its details and if we master the movement mechanics that we have previously described.
Doom Eternal is not an easy ride
We are now going to talk about the difficulty, which allows us to choose between 4 different modes that do not alter the number of monsters on the screen or the speed of their attacks, but rather increase the damage that enemies inflict and the use of their abilities. more powerful, depending on the difficulty in which we are playing. The four basic levels (from low to high) you can see below:
Not varying the number of enemies on the screen means that you do not lose your frenzy or the sensations of reward at the end of each battle in any difficulty, so we can enjoy the game regardless of our skill or level is chosen. Besides, we can alternate between the different difficulties at any time of the campaign without any consequence.
Another point that we would like to highlight is that the difficulty curve is very well measured, with a gradual and fair progression even in the final bosses, which will be a challenge compared to what we have played previously, but they will be far from impossible. If the game detects that we are stuck in a final boss, it will allow us to use a Sentinel Armor that protects us from a greater amount of damage and does not represent any penalty to progress. Resorting to this help is totally optional.
Something that we realize little by little and as we overcome levels is how well it is adding new mechanics and how, little by little, it teaches us how to use them, forcing us almost without realizing that we have to master them before move on to the next phase, finishing the game being so many better players than when we started.
Finally, in addition to the classic difficulty modes that we have told you about, there are two extra modes for the bravest, and that is Ultra Nightmare and Extra Lives, two challenges for the most skilled players that, of course, we do not recommend for your first game.
A long campaign with more narrative cut than it seems
Id Software puts all the meat on the grill in everything related to the playable level, which does not mean that it neglects other aspects such as the narrative, which is more present in the game than you might imagine. During the campaign, different characters will tell us in a summary way the whole story, what is happening with the demonic invasion and all the details of it, but, if we want, we will also find some codices that will allow us to delve into the story with complete readings. The plot has some surprises and twists that we think will be to the liking of many of you.
As for the duration, we, playing in Ultraviolence, have taken about 17 hours to finish the main part of the game, a duration that can be extended or reduced depending on the difficulty you choose and your ability, as with all titles. From the market.
Beyond the campaign itself, we are also offered multiple elements to extend the duration of this installment, such as collectibles, different types of secret challenges present in various areas of the game, as well as the so-called Master Levels that we can access after passing the campaign and that they are more difficult versions of campaign missions that id Software will be adding regularly to challenge Doom Eternal players.
An asymmetric multiplayer to add hours and invasions on the way
Doom Eternal incorporates an asymmetric multiplayer mode called Battlemode in which two players will have to control demons while the third one faces them controlling the Slayer. Those who control demons can use different abilities and even summon other creatures to help them in combat. At the same time, the Slayer will have all his power and arsenal at his disposal to annihilate all demons. The combat process is simple as the best team wins in 5 rounds.
In total we can enjoy this way in six different arenas and, in general, it fulfills the objective of offering us a different experience than the campaign with which to enjoy, above all, fighting with our friends. However, it is not one of the strengths of the game. Beyond that, in addition to Battlemode, we can also enjoy an invasion mode that will be published in the future (it has no confirmed date), and that will allow us to invade the game of another player during his campaign in the purest Dark Souls style Although, yes, it will be a mode available to those who have already completed the game once (and who can give a second round to the campaign with this invasion mode activated or deactivated).
Technical soundness, masterful music
It is time to talk about more technical aspects, a game that has an attractive graphic finish and superior to what we saw in the previous installment of the saga. It is not the most powerful game graphically on the market (nor does it pretend to be), but it shows many elements on the screen with great solidity and stability accompanied by effects such as explosions or successful shooting.
At an artistic level, it is a real delight, and it shows us overwhelming areas and much more open than in the game released in 2016, all without losing an iota of stability except for some very specific sections of the game.
In general, the game has had a very solid performance at all times, even in stressful situations with many enemies or shots, although in some levels and, above all, in the final level, we have noticed some drops (although never below 60 fps). Of course, keep in mind that a 5 GB game release patch has already been announced in which various performance improvements will come to improve stability.
The last section of which we want to record in our analysis is that of sound, with an impeccable work both in the audios of weapons, attacks or stages and above all, the masterful soundtrack by Mick Gordon who breathes power into us and accompanies us in a perfect way at all times.
If we think long and hard, it is difficult to find a better way to make a first-person action game than id Software has done with Doom Eternal, offering us Doom in its purest form and improving an already notable installment released in 2016 with new elements and more successful design of levels that end up giving us one of the most satisfying and frenetic experiences in the world of video games.
Doom Eternal is, in 2020, what Doom 2 was for shooters in 1994, a benchmark within the genre that marks the way of how to make a game of this type that aims to focus on action and gameplay, without This means that the history, the technical finish or the music that accompanies the game is neglected. Doom Eternal from id Software and Bethesda is an outstanding work that will delight everyone who has ever enjoyed an action game and, of course, will offer Doom fans everything they wanted and much more already which, I assure you, is better than you think, in fact, Doom Eternal is almost a dream come true for those of us who grew up with the 90s shooters.
We prepared this review with PS4 Pro digital review code provided by Bethesda.