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Test: Doom Eternal (3D shooter, PC)

Doom Eternal - Launch Trailer

Conclusion

Fortunately, Doom Eternal did exactly what we expected it to do in the test: Brute 3D shooter fare with smooth gameplay, great looks and creative level architecture – with a very thick layer of old school flair. Anyone who can throw a little bit overboard, strategic planning, careful planning and excessive waiting in their own style of play must simply have played the new id software shooter.

Benefits
Nice old school shooter flair
Funky gameplay
Excellent graphics
Soundtrack goes well with it
Disadvantage
Quite a hardware eater
Ammunition shortage annoying

Doom Eternal in the test: We liked that

Large arsenal of weapons, a huge horde of demons and a pretty cool guy who just saves the world. No, the Duke is (unfortunately) not back – instead the doomsayer intervenes again. id Software's legendary 3D shooter series, the 2016 enjoyed the first great reboot, wants to convince PC and console players of himself from Friday. We were already able to deal with the full version and are thrilled. Because Doom Eternal starts exactly where Doom left off – and extends the strengths of the shooter even further.

The most obvious strength of Doom Eternal is the gameplay itself . The developers make the shooter passages extremely dynamic and at the same time so fluid that each arena feels like a finely choreographed baller ballet. From the classic gunplay to deep cuts with the chainsaw to one of the countless finishing moves, which – depending on the angle of attack to the opponent – turn out differently; what id software pulls out of the hat here is really big shooter cinema. And although the Doomslayer is obviously superior to the demons, we never feel invincible – this is very important so that the tension is maintained and the shooter does not end in irrelevant processing of opposing waves. The developers also master this balancing act very well.

In order for such a polished creaking dance to be possible at all, the controls must fit. We only tested Doom Eternal on a PC with a mouse and keyboard and therefore cannot say anything about controller control. The very classic shooter combo is so good and precise that it is almost UNREAListic. Of course, the level design also plays a decisive role here – and here too we have little to complain about. All sorts of flat arenas alternate with vertical design, which – also compared to the direct predecessor – brings more tactical sophistication into play. Both for our approach to situations, but also for those of our enemies.

On the technology side, id Software relies on its own id-Tech engine in version 7. This is strongly optimized for performance, which makes sense with regard to the console releases. At the same time, the developers do not forego graphic opulence. Doom Eternal is particularly strong with larger areas, which is actually more of a problem for older iterations of the id-Tech engine. The occasional feature called “Destructible Demons”, which “destroys” the 3D models of the enemies more and more during the fight, on the one hand creates the right mood, but on the other hand acts as an important priority indicator in the often confusing battles against the large hordes of demons.

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Doom Eternal: Fast as an arrow, smooth and quite demanding. Image: id software

Doom Eternal in the test: We don't like that as much

In total there is little serious negative to report about Doom Eternal. Certainly, some players are likely to open the sheer level of violence, blood and demon parts. But let's be honest: If you buy Doom, you should know what you are getting into – the series has never been able to come up with a gentle shooter diet in its decades of tradition.

We find the constant shortage of ammunition a little annoying, which always causes jerky retreat maneuvers. With a skilful chainsaw slitter, we can replenish our stock of bullets and life relatively easily – since the chainsaw also requires petrol, we are too often looking for a weak mini-zombie (which appears again and again during the battles) to replenish your own supply. Shooter newbies in particular, who want to take a load of Doom, are likely to be overwhelmed even in the simplest level of difficulty and are even frustrated as a result. Doom Eternal does not offer a lot of help.

Even for veterans, Doom Eternal always offers really nasty situations. Especially in confined spaces with all sorts of strong demons and permanently installed rocket launchers, you also lose track of your own life bar. The retreat to supposedly safe areas is sometimes denied by blockades that limit the arena-like battlefields.

Generally, however, it can be said that our complain points hover at a fairly high level. Because the bottom line in the single player campaign is Doom Eternal a very good shooter representative, who actually does everything right, but could take a bit better to newcomers.

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Doom Eternal: The selection of demon opponents is huge. Image: id software

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Florian Holzbauer

Florian Holzbauer

As an expert in PC hardware, virtual reality and game consoles you are interested Florian Holzbauer especially for technical innovations and the influence of powerful hardware on video games. In addition, he also writes tests on games.

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