You have to wonder what John Romero would make of id’s upcoming ‘stress test’. If you’re not stressed playing Doom, you imagine he’d say, it’s not Doom. SUCK IT DOWN! Whatever: nu-Doom needs to test its dedicated server infrastructure in a real-world consumer environment, and that matters to us because we might end up playing it spectacularly early as a result.
Here’s everything we know about the Doom beta, release date and mods.
Think back to a time before MachineGames resurrected Wolfenstein, if you can, and work out if you bought The New Order on or before May 26th last year. If you did, you might be eligible for the first public slice of Doom multiplayer.
Important note: this isn’t the advertised beta that was promised with New Pre-Orders, but a closed alpha bonus round for those players lucky enough to be selected. And while the beta will be available in lots of languages, the alpha is English-only.
There’ll be one map, Heatwave, that puts players in an industrial-themed arena chock-a with armour, ammo and health pickups. Expect narrow corridors, walkways and small chambers – all linked to a central atrium where potshots can be traded over power-ups.
The mode is 6v6 team deathmatch – the “core” of nu-Doom’s multiplayer – and the focal point will be the potent Revenant and Gauss Rifle power-ups. The former will transform one player into the overpowering baddy of the same name, granting them access to a jetpack and dual rocket launcher for a limited time. The latter is the perfect counter-weapon: a gun that disassembles demons in one shot, and boasts an alternate fire mode for picking out targets through walls.
Other weapons on show include the super shotgun and plasma rifle, and there’s a Personal Teleporter. No start date forthcoming yet – but are you ready to suck that all down?
Our Ben thinks the Arch-Vile is Doom’s greatest enemy. He’s wrong, but makes a compelling case.