‘Doom’ raises Hell on Switch

All Hell breaks loose and it’s up to the “Doom Marine” to save the Solar System.

The original “Doom” came out on PC in 1993, and before last year’s reboot, “Doom 3” came out in 2004.

On Nov. 10, Bethesda’s 2016 First-Person Horror Shooter “Doom” (stylized “DOOM” reboot brought Hell to the Switch.

In “Doom,” the Union Aerospace Corporation has been harvesting Argent Energy from Hell via Mars, when a researcher, Olivia Pierce, releases demons from their holding cells and begins trying to open a portal to Hell.

As the Doom Marine, the player slows down Olivia a little bit, but ultimately it’s not enough and she opens the portal, unleashing Hell, and sending the Doom Marine to the Nine Circles, leaving him to try and survive Hell and save the Solar Systemdoom screenshot

To survive Hell and its demons, the player collects Runes that provide different benefits, wears a combat suit called a Praetor Suit, and has an arsenal of weapons.

The dark green Praetor Suit was discovered near the Doom Marine in Hell’s Kadingir Sanctum. The suit has five different upgrade sections: Environment Resistance, Area-Scanning Technology, Equipment System, Powerup Effectiveness, and Dexterity. These can be upgraded by finding Praetor chips on dead Elite Guards, security personnel in charge of protecting the Lazarus Project, which is the project Pierce was working on.

Finding an Argent Cell can also route a permanent increase in capacity to the Doom Marine’s Health, Armor, or Ammo.

screenshot 2I prioritized my ammo capacity because there are seven guns and one other weapon that all rely on some form of ammunition. The gun that the player begins the campaign with, and the one gun that doesn’t require ammo, is the Pistol, which is a plasma weapon that has an infinite number of trigger pulls. All the weapons have modifications, and the Pistol modification allows for a single-charged shot that deals extra damage.

The first weapon the player will find is the Shotgun, a quick, pump-action combat shotgun. It has two mods. One of the mods allows the player to fire a three-round burst, and the other allows you to fire one explosive shot.

The next weapon the player will come across is the Heavy Assault Rifle. This is a fully automatic, ballistic weapon. The first mod I purchased for the Heavy Assault Rifle was one that allows for six mini-missiles to be fired in a semi-automatic fashion. The other mod puts a scope on the rifle, which comes in handy when you want to pick off demons from a distance.

The player will also pick up the Plasma Rifle, a smaller rifle that works much better at close range than the heavy rifle. It fires fully-automatic orbs of plasma that do quite a bit of damage. One of the mods allows you to send off a wave of energy that damages close-by enemies.screenshot 3

There’s also the Super Shotgun, which is found later in the campaign. It is a sawed-off, double-barreled shotgun that initially fires both shells at the same time. After being upgraded, each shell can be fired separately. The Super Shotgun has a wide spread and is good for taking out small, clustered groups of enemies with one pull, or powerful enough to take out most of the big guys in one-to-three trigger pulls.

There are also four particularly heavy guns that are great for taking out the bigger demons. The Rocket Launcher is a shoulder-mounted missile launcher, and the Gauss Canon is a plasma weapon that fires powerful, explosive plasma rounds. The Chaingun is a multi-barreled, revolving minigun that will tear through demons large and small.

Then there’s the gun made famous by the original “Doom,” the Big [Expletive] Gun, or the BFG-9000. It fires a massive, green ball of energy that will kill everything in its path.screenshot5

These weapons are all available for use in the Campaign Arcade Mode as well. Arcade Mode basically regurgitates the campaign, but you can freely play whichever level you’d like. There’s also a scoring system with the points earned for each kill making an explosive appearance on the screen to let you know how many points it is worth.

The Arcade Mode has been great for hopping in and playing when I only have a short amount of time, or when my friends want to play. It’s extremely nostalgic and makes it feel like you’re actually playing an arcade game.

There are also even more weapons in the multiplayer section of the game, including the Lightning Gun, the Hellshot, the Reaper, and four other guns.

The Multiplayer section of “Doom” is extremely impressive, especially for being on the Switch. It works very similarly to the multiplayer matchmaking of the “Call of Duty” franchise. Players can customize their own Doom Marine and make their own weapon classes out of any combination of the weapons, excluding the Chainsaw and the BFG.screenshot 4

Players can put their weapons to use by joining a matchmaking game, which takes virtually no time at all. Almost as soon as you enter matchmaking, you will join a game, which is extremely impressive. It means that not only did Bethesda and Nintendo do a good job with the algorithm that is responsible for placing players in matches, but it also means that a lot of people are playing “Doom” on the Switch. This is good, because it means developers can look to the success of “Doom” on the Switch as reason to develop games for the console.

Nintendo has previously been more passive with Mature titles coming to their platforms, but they recently released multiple statements about attempting to diversify the types of games coming to the Switch, as well as actively engaging in the development of Mature titles.

I really appreciate this because taking Triple A, M rated games on the go could be executed poorly, but “Doom” and “Skyrim” have proven that these games can look beautiful on Nintendo’s new hybrid console.

The only real issue I had with “Doom” was that every now and then, the game would make a terribly loud noise, then completely lose sound. The first time it happened, I thought I had blown the speakers on my Switch. But, it’s just something that happens that will more than likely be fixed in an update.

I would say “Doom” is a significant step in Nintendo’s new direction, and it’s a great game to have on-the-go. I give it an 8 out of 10.

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