Many faces of Doom

I have discovered Doom anew more than once.

My first time was in 1995, and it was Doom 2, vanilla version. I was playing Heretic like crazy, and I didn’t like Doom at first. Its colours were too brownish. Heretic was colourful and vivid, but not Doom. I was actually disappointed. I played it a while, with cheat codes nonetheless, but if I managed to map 6, that would be all. Then I played Doom also, which was a little better (more colours). With this I have a strong memory od Doom. I was home alone—my parents and sister gone for a walk—and I started playing map Pandemonium I suppose. It freaked me out completely—so much that I wasn’t able to play it alone for some time, only with friends.

I returned to Doom in December 1996. After finding Doom 95 (shareware episode) on CD attached to a computer magazine, tempted with higher resolution I decided to check if it’ll work with full IWADs. It did. From launcher I chose map Chasm, and later Icon of Sin (I wanted to see how it ends, but back then I was a foreigner to concept of shooting a hole in a wall, so after spawning a lot of monsters I got bored). In 1999 I gave another shot and this time I went through all levels. Still, mind you, with cheat codes. Only god mode with occasional light amplifier. It was 1999 when, while walking with two of my friends, I said, “I decided that Doom 2 will be the best computer game of this millennium.” My friends did not agree with me. Fuck ‘em, I thought, I know better.

At that time I was using arrows to walk and turn, and alt for strafing.

About 2003 I discovered ZDoom. I was a different then, changed by Quake, and Duke Nukem 3D and Quake 3, and Blood, and Blood 2, and Rise of the Triad, and Shadow Warrior, and others. Very hight resolution and advanced controls (like mouselook and jumping) bought me. And it was easier. This time I didn’t use cheat codes. I was ready. Ten years after premiere of the game. I beat it. This time Icon of Sin was no match, with precise targeting of modern source ports. I spent next decade with ZDoom, not counting a short romance on side with Doom Remake, and I mastered my Doom skills.

In 2013 I stumbled upon Doom Retro project. The very begining, version 1.0. Long story short, it brought me back to the very core of Doom. Something I lost, and didn’t even knew about it, with all these expanded source ports. (Not that I mind it, I don’t believe in one true face of Doom—these are all aspects of the same thing.) It resetted my whole experience. I still use ZDoom for more advanced stuff, but I reconfigured it completely, so it’s closer to the core of Doom.

This weekend I tried Doom Retro with Xbox 360 gamepad, mostly curious about force feedback, and I discovered Doom once again. This is something I like about this game the most—new versions and aspects are still there just waiting to be discovered. After 20 years. I’m pretty sure that it’s not the last time. There’s Occulus Rift on the horizon, for instance. I would also like to play Doom projected on the wall. And last but not least, I’m intending to try Doom with steering wheel. It’s sounds crazy but I’ve been thinking about it since 1995.