Doom Eternal review: “Screams at you to transfer faster and to fight harder, and you can design nothing
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Doom Eternal review: “Screams at you to transfer faster and to fight harder, and you can design nothing

Our Verdict

Doom Eternal is a smart iteration of what came ahead of it that occasionally stumbles beneath its acquire desire to evolve


  • Combat is fast and frantic
  • Visually stunning
  • It be silent enjoyable to rip demons apart


  • Platforming sections are frustrating
  • Struggles when it forces you to gradual down

Doom Eternal is at its handiest when it’s screaming at you to transfer faster. As it thrusts the tools to single-handedly eviscerate the rampaging spawn of hell into your clenched, blood-sopping moist fists –  an array of finely-tuned weapons designed to deliver mass-demon-destruction. In the event you are up to your ankles in viscera, blasting chunks of flesh from foe whereas the hum of the chainsaw warms your status off fingers. As it units its hyper-kinetic action to a cacophonic soundscape of blood, bullets, andheavy fucking metal

Doom Eternal screams at you to transfer faster and to fight harder and you can design nothing but obey. No longer because you have develop into subservient to the altar of id Software, but because the cadence of Doom’s combat has demanded nothing much less of you for more than three decades. 

Fast Facts: Doom Eternal

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Release date: March 20, 2020
Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Developer: id Software
Publisher: Bethesda

Considerable fancy its predecessors, Doom Eternal is a hammer-scare pantomime in which you are made an active participant. It is an elaborate and self-indulgent production, its violence so over the top that you can’t encourage but smile as it spills out over the stage and beneath your feet. It be an utterly ridiculous and strangely endearing showing, warping your suspension of disbelief so broadly that you will ponder whether or no longer you have got crossed over to another dimension – to a world where the primary-person shooter followed the archaic directions first outlined by Doom in 1993 with out examine instead of turning toward the teachings of Half-Existence. 

The order with this stage reveal is that the screaming has to stop sometime. The director is hoarse and is begging you to revel in an intermission from the action. The bullet casings want to be silent, they repeat you; the buckets of blood want to be refilled, the gore mopped up, and the guitars tuned back down to D. The cast of cannon fodder needs to take a breather as the next hellish stage is reset somewhere out of stare. You were movingtoo fast,and there may be silent a little story left to dispute into your face. 

Doom Eternal is at its worst when it makes you gradual down; it struggles to settle in silence. 

Feeling a want for pace

(Image credit: Bethesda)

I can depend the variety of first-person shooters that can function competently as platformers on one hand, and Doom Eternal is no longer among them. Developer id Software has found itself caught, by attempting to straddle the line between inducing nostalgia and embracing evolution it has disrupted the situations in which Doom (2016) was able to so with out trouble thrive. 

Doom Eternal routinely breaks the pace of its action by forcing you to stiffly navigate towering spaces at regular intervals. You’re going to design this by swinging imprecisely between monkey bars, scaling bland craggy walls, bouncing off of unstable platforms, dashing between spacious maws of death, and double-jumping to ledges with slippery collision detection. Doom’s circulate programs are tightly refined, designed to aid your crosshairs centered on fast-moving enemies amongst a backdrop of colourful chaos. These programs fight in the event you are pushed to slowly and methodically scale the ambiance with little room for error to reach the next combat arena. 

It be levels fancy Doom Hunter Base, Neat Gore Nest, and Mars Core that make up the bulk of the mid-game that are hit hardest by this design resolution. These spaces are larger and more ambitious than anything the studio has dedicated to ahead of with Doom, and they fight to maintain momentum. 

(Image credit: Bethesda)

“As a prerequisite to development, platforming solely serves to introduce points of friction in an in any other case frictionless journey.”

First-person platforming appropriate about works for Doom when it’s an optional extravagance – in the event you are off exploring for the myriad of optional collectable scattered for the duration of each of the missions – but as a prerequisite to development they solely assist to introduce points of friction in an in any other case frictionless journey. 

By the time underwater sections were introduced – slowing you down even further, with the added annoyance of mitigating radioactive damage thrown in for valid measure – it starts to develop into demanding to withstand the race to put the controller down and walk away entirely. That all said, it be demanding to indulge in these tendencies in the event you are faced with the prospect of coming across another sensationally-realised vista or the alternative to shove the Neat Shotgun double-barrel deep into the throat of a Baron of Hell.  

That’s where Doom Eternal feelsmoral, revelling in ultra-violence across some impossibly beautiful environments. The game has constructed on the core loop that helped propel its predecessor from mere revival-undertaking to genuine revolution, its central gimmick always working to aid players moving and – critically – engaging with enemies. 

Embracing aggression

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Glory Kills are silent the star of the combat journey. Pumping enemies with ample bullets to reach a damage threshold will make them glow, indicating that you can design some graphic combination of: decapitation / goring / smashing / bashing / slicing / knifing / ripping / tearing (delete as necessary). These melee executions aren’t appropriate for reveal, they assist as your primary means of retrieving health. 

It encourages you to play Doom Eternal the way id wants you to play it. The studio wants you to be moving and shooting as swiftly as you can, giving as great aggression back to the hulking monsters as they give to you. To be triumphant in Doom Eternal – especially whereas you begin to whip by way of the trouble levels – you may have to get in the face of enemies and by no means back away from a tough bump into; there may be no faster way to meet your maker than to engage in a half-hearted retreat, with victory earned by engaging with the relentless pace of the action by itself phrases – backing off is by no means an choice, carrying by way of with forward momentum towards piles of ammunition, crimson barrels, and, yes, contemporary enemies to rip and tear by way of is the key to victory. 

Ought to you aren’t in want of health, you will find that your Chainsaw can be dilapidated to bite by way of foes and retrieve ammunition, which is always in brief present. Your flame belch, a shoulder-mounted flamethrower, can burn enemies and deliver armour plating when shot, whereas Glory Kills also charge up your ability to deliver a devastating Blood Punch which eviscerates appropriate about anything within your immediate cone of imaginative and prescient.  All in all, it be a killer cycle that solely helps propel Doom Eternal’s core combat to unique heights.  

Speaking of the core combat, it be been a prolonged-standing rule that you have selected an id shooter on the flexibility of its shotguns. Unsurprisingly, the studio has taken its penchant for building the handiest boomsticks in video games and outdone itself. The Neat Shotgun is most no longer really to put away; it screams energy with every shot, its weight and staggering punch as satisfying to utilize the opening hours of the game to the last.

Weapons have always been at the heart of Doom, and Eternal is no longer any journey in this regard. You’re going to also find that each of the firearms can once again be upgraded for the duration of the game with Weapon Points, earned by completing in-mission goals and chaos thresholds. Most weapons have two available modifications, each of which can be switched up with a easy button press, and offer an array of utterly ridiculous additional ways to turn demons to pulp. Exploring the environments will also present encourage to earn Sentinel Crystals and Praetor Suit points which can be dilapidated to upgrade your armour, improving its utility and resistance, or upgrading your health, armour, and ammo capacities.  

A celebration of ultra-violence

(Image credit: Bethesda)

You’re going to want to invest in these upgrades and enhancements early on, because Doom Eternal is no longer always really afraid to beat your head against the wall till it be a pulpy mess. By the late game, Doom Eternal gets brutal, really pushing you to utilise all of your available abilities and weapons to get by way of its combat arenas in one share. 

For the most part, Doom Eternal casts its action in locked-off combat arenas, pushing you to skirt by way of them at pace looking for the most violent lines of none-stop navigation. These spaces aren’t as tightly designed as the ones featured in Doom (2016), which I imagine is down to the increased verticality – id is desperate to get you utilising its first-person platforming programs, even in the center of frantic fights – but they are silent great to engage enemies in. 

That said, Doom Eternal does endure because of some of its enemy design. The game is structured around escalating encounters – it introduces you to an enemy kind by itself, permits you to figure out the hook to slaying it, and then continues to throw a litany of them at you once. It be a potent design that keeps Doom Eternal feeling frantic at all occasions, with the game’s aggressive and persistent AI ensuring that some of those creatures combine tactics to crush you in some actually terrifying ways.  

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Combat arenas are usually a combination of Heavy Cannon fodder – foes that can be swiftly chewed up or smashed down for an easy burst of ammo or health – and larger, more punishing enemies that’ll take a few runs around the arena to topple. This structure maintains momentum, and the relentless pace that the core ethos that the game is constructed on. Till it makes you gradual down. 

Boss battles with health bars were a blight on Doom (2016), and whereas that is no longer always really so great of a trouble here, there are a handful of enemy varieties that bring play screeching to a halt. For Doom Eternal to work, it has to have you managing your time between a number of enemy varieties and constantly leaving you on the verge of being totally overwhelmed, constantly asking you to push your understanding of the circulate and combat mechanics to the max. And in comes a Marauder (a brand unique demon designed for Eternal) or a returning Archvile, Neat Heavy enemies that are generally no enjoyable to fight. The Marauder, in particular, solely works to gradual combat to a crawl. It be an enemy kind designed inherently for one-versus-one encounters, and it doesn’t work in the managed chaos of the wider combat journey. 

Detached, that’s a small annoyance in an in any other case blistering FPS. Ought to you can chunk your lip and endure some routinely frustrating levels constructed around platforming, then you definately are going to have one hell of a valid time with Doom Eternal. It be a fast, smart, and frantic shooter that appears to be like to find real delight in testing your endurance. It be an outrageous and ridiculous pantomime where you are certain by blood to the unrelenting cadence of the action. 

Doom Eternal was reviewed on Xbox One X

Doom Eternal

Doom Eternal is a smart iteration of what came ahead of it that occasionally stumbles beneath its acquire desire to evolve

More Info

Available platformsPC, PS4, Xbox One

Good day there! I am the Features Editor for GamesRadar.