Doom is iconic for thousands of reasons. Between the blood and metal level design, expansive, great-feeling arsenal, and always fun-to-kill demons, it’s clear why Doom 1993 remains the greatest and most influential of all classic FPS games. But one thing stands out above all – the speed. Other shooters might be quick, and demand a lot of motion, but rarely are they ‘Doom fast,’ able to find that immensely sweet spot between balletic motion and perpetual, bullet-churning offense. Enter Forgive Me Father 2, a new boomer shooter, built in Unreal Engine 5, that mixes the Lovecraftian world and special abilities of Dishonored with Doom’s pitch-perfect blend of dancing and destroying. Blood, Quake, Half-Life, and the other monoliths of the ‘90s are strong here, but there are also shades of Borderlands, BioShock, and XIII. This is, by any measure, an FPS for FPS fanatics.
Released by Byte Barrel in 2022, the original Forgive Me Father casts you as either ‘The Journalist’ or ‘The Priest’ as you obliterate waves of cosmic horror enemies throughout an Innsmouth-inspired linear world. With the sequel, things are different. Between each level, you return to a small hub where you can customize loadouts and skills, and shoot the breeze with a few fan-favorite characters. The narrative is branching, and there are multiple endings. A boomer shooter in spirit, Forgive Me Father 2 is nevertheless an ultra-modern FPS, built on the latest version of Unreal.
“UE5 lets you make better games more easily,” Byte Barrel CEO Ernest Krystian tells PCGamesN. “Sometimes it’s maybe too big! Some developers might choose different engines because of that. But for us it fits perfectly. We started developing on Unity, but moved to Unreal because it gives us more possibility to make great games.”
This is partly why Forgive Me Father 2 looks so good. It’s smooth. It’s sharp. It’s full of dynamic and ambient lighting. But the key, really, is Byte Barrel’s terrific visual design. Part 3D, part cel-shaded, but always inspired by classics of the Doom and Build engines, Forgive Me Father 2’s aesthetic is unfailingly striking. Every frame looks like a panel from a comic book. Weapon hits are crisp and gory, and animations walk a wonderful line between retro simplicity and modern sophistication.
“A boomer shooter needs to be touching your heart and reaching into your memories as a kid,” Krystian continues. “Some things have to be done. A great shotgun, for example. Also a kind of simplicity. But I don’t want to say that there is a kind of recipe.”
As with any Lovecraftian story, sanity plays a role in Forgive Me Father 2. The more chaos you sow and the more carnage you witness, the higher you push your ‘Madness’ gauge. If it gets too high, it can have negative effects, but use it at the right moment, and you can temporarily stop time, blasting frozen enemies before dropping back into the action proper.
Playing as The Priest from the first game, your mentality is also central to the story. It seems The Priest is locked in a sanatorium, and has lost his grip on reality after the events of Forgive Me Father. Then again, things might not be as they seem…
Forgive Me Father 2 will be available on Steam Early Access before the end of 2023, though Byte Barrel is yet to set a specific date. Likewise, there’s no full release date yet, but if you want a fast-paced, chunky, and in-depth FPS that seamlessly blends modern and classic, Forgive Me Father 2 is certainly worth the wait.
In the meantime, scratch that retro shooter itch with some of the best old games you can still get on PC. Alternatively, see what the future holds with the best upcoming games arriving in the next few months and beyond.