DOOM (4), and why I'm super mad about it
DOOM(4) beta weekend is live right now, I encourage you to give it a try (but also play Overwatch this weekend, because it's better).
So I've been cautiously optimistic for this title since it was announced. I love DOOM, and I've been ready for a new, modern DOOM game for some time now. Early trailers looked promising - dark, horrific, bloody, but fast paced and tons of action. All the classic weapons and enemies were there, things looked like you hoped they would. I was ready for a trip to hell to blow up some demons.
Then gameplay trailers started to hit, and early impressions, and I started to waver in my excitement. And now open beta is here, and I'm legit super mad about this game. This isn't DOOM. This isn't what I want from a DOOM game. It's Halo + Call of Duty + lots of gore. I'm so cranky about this.
Perhaps the biggest miss is the fact that you don't pick up weapons. At all. Instead, you have loadouts, and you unlock weapons by, you guessed it, earning XP and leveling up. You get 2 weapons and one "perk" per loadout, and that's what you play with. You don't pick up any weapons on the map while playing. The only exception is picking up the minion thing that turns you into an OP demon, but I don't even want to get started on that. This ruins one of my favorite dynamics from the original DOOM games - the sprint to find stronger weapons to gain the slight advantage on your enemies in the chaos of battle. Do you want to respawn with a rocket launcher and super shotgun every single time you die? Perfect, because you can do that the first time you play, without having to unlock anything!
At least armor and health pickups are true to the nature of DOOM. You don't regenerate health, thank the Lord.
To make the weapon matters worse, players are bullet sponges. It takes a long time to kill anyone, regardless of the weapon used. Rocket launchers take 2-4 rockets just to kill someone (a direct hit only takes 50% of their health). It kinda hurts the pacing of the game, and really gives it a Halo combat vibe.
In addition to all that, the game throws in modern shooter attack mechanics that have no place in DOOM. You have a quick-fire grenade throw buttom (like Halo), and you also have a melee attack with the butt of your weapon (like Halo). Any time you engage in a close battle, it immediately starts out with 'nade throws, then a few bullets, then just turns into melee swinging until someone dies. Just like every other modern competitive shooter.
Seriously, it's a DOOM game, and I just keep dying to sniper rifle shots, frag grenade throws, and melee hits. This isn't DOOM.
DOOM(4) isn't a bad game. In fact, it's a pretty fun arena shooter. But this ain't the DOOM we wanted. Similar to the issues DOOM 3 had - as a horror game, DOOM 3 is actually great. But as a DOOM game, it completely missed. DOOM(4) is a good shooter. Great, even. But it's not a game worthy of the legacy left by DOOM 1 and 2.
It sure looks pretty, though.