Doom is a game series that spawned a whole genre, the first-person shooter. This week marks 13 years since the release of Doom 3 for the PC in North America. Although the game is the third in the series, it takes place before the events of the original Doom. Doom 3 is both a prequel and an origin story.
Story and Gameplay
Doom 3 is set in the year 2145. A military-industrial facility on Mars is experimenting with a number of technologies including weaponry, biological splicing, and teleportation. One of the teleportation experiments leads to a gateway to hell, opening at a number of locations within the facility. An onslaught of demons invade the facility through the portals.
You play as an unnamed space marine and must fight your way through the facility to close the portals and stop the demons from reaching Earth. The nameless space marine is clueless about the events that caused the apocalyptic event. Audio logs and video diaries allow you to gain insight on the personal stories of the victims and details about the true agenda of the company. As you progress through the game, you will find new powerful weaponry and various frightening enemies.
Doom 3 did not introduce new ground-breaking mechanics to the first-person shooter genre. It is a simple game that relies on atmosphere and the legacy of its predecessors to draw the player in. Dark hallways, creepy music, and the constant threat of close-quarters enemy attack are what sells Doom 3.
Doom 3 was a hit and drew the attention of old and new fans alike. It was true to the series in both presentation and gameplay, and it also made great use of id Sofware’s in-house 3D engine id Tech 4. Doom 3 received an aggregated score of 87% on Metacritic. Although reviews were great, there were still some mixed reviews from media outlets.
IGN’s Douglas Perry stated in his review, “Doom 3 is a rocking, frightening, tension-filled yet straight-forward, linear and redundant single-player game.” The general consensus from a number of reviewers that Doom 3 was not without its shortcomings, however, the game was a technological marvel and was great despite its shortcomings.
Commercially, Doom 3 was a smashing success. A number of ports were created for Mac OS X and Linux. The first console port of the game came in April 2005. Two versions were released for the Original Xbox. One is a standard edition and a steelbook collectors edition that came with Ultimate Doom and Doom 2. It also came with the previously released expansion, Resurrection of Evil. By 2007, Doom 3 had sold 3.5 million copies.
In 2009, id Sofware was purchased by ZeniMax Media, the parent company to Bethesda. A few years later, a definitive version of the game was released for PC, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3. Doom 3 BFG Edition was released in 2012, eight years after Doom 3’s initial release. The game featured enhanced graphics, better audio, and more horror effects as well 3D support. This version of the game contained all previously released content, expansions as well as a new expansion called The Lost Mission.