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Doom II (Xbox 360) Review

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Say first person shooter and any gamer will spout off Halo, Quake, Goldeneye or Doom depending on when they grew up. Doom is still an all time classic and Doom II is as well; both actively still being played on PC's along with the Quake series. In 1994, despite minimal additions from the first game, Doom II ends up on top with its polishing. This port offers 9 new maps developed specifically for this version and despite some nitpicks looks to be the best port of the game in years.

As far as Audio goes Doom II's midi based soundtrack is still fantastic and gives that classic feel FPS games lost in the last ten years. While Doom I's soundtrack felt a bit butchered with the port to XBLA there is no suffering from this soundtrack. The sound effects are essentially the same from the first game and while not as enticing to hear multiple times like the sound track, they are tolerable unless you really hate grunting and screeching.

Like the first Doom on XBLA the ability to look up and down is removed in this adaption. Hardcore Doomers will not like the auto-aiming found in the game for multiplayer, but for single player it works just fine. The issue does pose a concern as it takes away a lot of the skill used proudly by death match players. Imagine if Halo had players auto lock on to any player bounding around, it would kill the game.

Like the first game the multiplayer in death match mode isn't great. The auto targeting kills the skill factor and they tend to lag. This problem doesn't occur in co-op campaign but persists in the multiplayer despite trying six different hosts.

Doom II for XBLA Review

The only new weapon not in the first game is the Super Shotgun, a double barreled shotgun that is devastating to enemies. The mega sphere is the only new item which strangely gives players 200% Armor/Health no matter what the current percentage is at before pickup. Doom II doesn't try to fix the mold; it didn't in 1994 and isn't trying now.

The new mini-episode No Rest for the Living is a 9 stage level set made specifically for this release. I enjoyed the old Doom II campaign but my heart fluttered at these awesome new levels. The enemies are as grueling as later levels in Doom II and the action is constant. The level design remains a lot similar to later main campaign levels in terms of complexity. Players that complete these levels even earn themselves an Avatar Marine Suit to wear. There is no better feeling than mowing down demon spawns in seemingly endless numbers; to the point the screen is covered in dead demon corpses rotting on the screen in pixilated glory.

Doom II is worth the 800 MS points ($10) and those out crying about price should remember that's the price Doom I also launched at. This game offers the complete package of 32 main campaign levels, 9 brand new levels, online death match and co-op campaign. There's a lot of time to be wasted here and although this is a 16 year old game it still beats a good handful of what's out there in 2010.









#1 up/downrinz 2011-02-20 12:46
"Like the first Doom on XBLA the ability to look up and down is removed in this adaption. "

Wrong, it simply wasn't there in the original.

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