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REVIEW: Doom 3

AUTHOR: id Software

REVIEW SUMMARY: Best single-player game from id Software, lots of fun, tedious at times


BRIEF SYNOPSIS: This incarnation of id’s first person shooter actually has a plot you care about! You play a marine working for a global company exploiting Mars when all hell breaks loose – literally. You have to find out what is happening and put a stop to it. The game makes use of dark hallways, scripted events including awesome audio cues, and in-game cut scenes to move the story along.


PROS: Solid graphics, excellent use of in-game cut scenes, nice special effects, excellent audio (both music and special effects), some unique scripted events, and in-game computer terminal use are the new features this game brings to computer gaming. The best feature is probably the use of your PDA for video, email, and audio logs – it really makes the world seem alive with characters when, in reality, you don’t really get to interact with anybody. Oh, and did I mention the game was scary? Plenty of bang for the buck, I finished the game after approximately 30 hours of gameplay.

CONS: No interaction with characters, the levels in the first 75% of the game are WAY too repetitive with the formula of: lights go off, enemy jumps you from behind, killing enemy means another spawns behind you being repeated too often. Being scared is fun, being scared continuously is fatiguing. The levels are so dark you don’t really get to see how good the graphics engine is. Doom 3 is in no way an huge advancement of the genre – most of it is cribbed from Half-Life, and Far Cry also already had many of the elements presented here. I personally don’t have a big issues with this, but id has a track record of revolutionizing shooters, and at least in terms of what single-player brings to the table Doom 3 doesn’t do that.

BOTTOM LINE: Fun game, very scary, and interesting sci-fi plot. It certainly isn’t a dissapointment – unless you expect id to hit one out of the park every time (heck even Mr. Steroid doesn’t do that!)

8 Comments on REVIEW: Doom 3

  1. For more details on Doom 3, check out Gamespot’s review (one that I found to be dead on) at

  2. A missed opportunity. You can’t sell a game just on technology these days, there has to be more. I found the email and the like irritating and detracted from the gameplay. Walk and blast shooters have their but when they have these side issues that you have to sift through so that you can continue, they get very tiresome. I didn’t find it immersive either – the protagonist doesn’t even have a damn identity.

    Wait for Half Life 2, that should show you all what should be done.

  3. I was just over at the id website. Amongst the countries that Doom 3 is shipping internationally, is our favorite punchline nation — France. Since I don’t have the game, can someone tell me if there’s a French difficulty setting in it? Like you put your gun and your flashlight up in the air the entire time and run around shouting “Je me rends!”*

    * “I surrender!” translations courtesy of

  4. The French version of DOOM has been out for some time – it’s called The Sims

  5. I’m eagerly awaiting HL2. My fear is that it’s so late that the graphics are going to look behind the times, but I have no doubt that they will produce a great playing game.

  6. For sure, HL2 is going to strike everyone and everything.

  7. Just finished Doom 3. Wow, what a ride!

    I played on Marine level, and being the lame FPS gamer that I am, I had to turn on God Mode to get through both Hell levels, after dying maybe 8 times trying to defeat the bosses.

    I had more fun playing through this game than I remember having when playing through Doom 2, but hey, that was a long, long time ago so maybe I’ve forgotten just how much fun that was. I definitely had more fun than Far Cry. In many ways I’d equate the experience to System Shock 2, which I hold up as a hallmark of horror FPS games.

    But I’d have to say that Half Life still holds the FPS title in my book, and I think story was the reason why. Thinking about it, though, weren’t the stories very similar to each other? Maybe HL was better because it was first and it was so revolutionary for its time?

    I’d give Doom 3 4.5 stars, just short of 5 due to the tedium of some of the levels, as mentioned above. Did we really need 4 Delta lab levels?

    Still, this is an incredibly well done game, and is the best game I’ve played this year.

  8. Tedium is the word I’d use to describe Doom 3. Here, in haiku:

    Doom 3? Cyclical.

    The lights go out, imps appear.

    Look out behind you.

    Right now I’d say 3 – 3.5 stars. It hasn’t really done much for me. The levels are well done, nice textures, effects, etc. But as a game, it hasn’t pulled me in and made me want to play it. I’ve been making myself play just to finish. Not a good sign. I liked Far Cry better, cause there’s something to be said for being able to sneak around and attack your foes from behind with a knife!

    We’ll see when I get to the end. If I do. How do I turn on God Mode?

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