Xbox One Review: DOOM Eternal

New Horizons?

DOOM Eternal is the direct sequel to 2016’s DOOM. Developed by id Software, DOOM Eternal delivers the ultimate combination of speed and power, along with the next leap in push-forward, first-person combat. As the DOOM Slayer, you’ll return to take your vengeance against the forces of Hell. Set to an all-new pulse-pounding soundtrack composed by Mick Gordon, you fight across dimensions as you slay new and classic demons with powerful new weapons and abilities.

2016’s DOOM reboot was a high-octane shooter that felt retro but new at the same time with it’s improved visuals, close up glory kills and hidden items as well as areas ripped straight from the original two games. The multiplayer was also a blast and I kept on till I unlocked everything. I’ve been looking forward to the sequel to DOOM 2016 ever since and even picked up the original DOOM trilogy to tide me over, but then the delay happened and we had to wait all the way till the same day as a very different game launched, the new Animal Crossing.
I’ve been lucky enough to have received code for DOOM Eternal before the launch date, so I was able to not have the quandary of which to play first and I also got a code for the DOOM 64 remake which also includes new levels and is a great addition to preorders. 64’s game was fun back in the day and it still is, so I’d highly recommend picking it up however you can. Now onto the campaign…

Doomguy has been pretty busy since the 2016 reboot, he has his own spaceship that can open up portals to areas full of hellspawn, aided by the VEGA AI from the last game. Doomguy is hunting down Hell Priests but is stirring up a hornet’s nest by doing so and has him travelling to Earth as well as other planets and of course, Hell itself. It’s a much tougher game than the reboot, I found myself getting whooped by demons before I got certain upgrades and even then, I had a few hairy experiences that made me think “Damn, that was challenging, even on Normal”. I honestly can’t even imagine on playing on a harder difficulty at this point, but overall, as challenging as it was, the campaign was also heavily rewarding.

My only criticism would be the wall-climbing/platforming sections as they feel a bit misplaced and can sometimes be brutally tough to nail specifically, especially if you’re trying to get to a hidden area or item. Other than that, the campaign is as brutal and brilliant as it’s predecessor and well worth every penny.

Multiplayer consists of a mode called Battlemode, which is very different to your standard PVP deathmatch scenario. Instead, you play in smaller matches where one player hunts down 2 other demons who cannot attack but can launch enemies and resources at you. It’s got a lot of strategy elements to it and it isn’t exactly what I was expecting from multiplayer and I certainly didn’t expect it to be the only mode currently on offer. I was shocked to find out that it didn’t have anything like Deathmatch, but maybe it’ll arrive further down the line.

In terms of visuals, DOOM Eternal is absolutely stunning and runs at a smooth 60FPS at 4K with HDR and has no slowdowns or hiccups that I experienced. The gore is just as gut-wrenchingly breath-taking and the level design is superb, while the character models are nicely animated. The soundtrack is great as you would expect and adds to the fast-paced action.

The Verdict

2016’s DOOM set a new standard for the series and DOOM Eternal more than lives upto that with a superb campaign, marred only by a few platforming issues. I can’t wait to see what else the team at id have in store for us in terms of DLC.

Score: 9.0