Saturday, April 10

Doom 3 Review

I played on: PC and Xbox
I paid: ???
Available on: PC
Notes: During my time with the PC version of Doom 3 I played with a widescreen mod. This mod doesn’t affect anything other than the resolution, so the game experience was still vanilla.

What I love about Doom 3 is how it makes me think about light in a way that no other game has ever done before or after it. Doom 3’s approach to lighting is so unique that even the BFG re-release removed this factor entirely. While I will review the Doom 3 BFG edition on its own it’s worth noting that what I consider Doom 3’s best feature isn’t present in that remaster. 

So, what makes the lighting so good? Simply put, darkness. Doom 3 isn’t afraid to drop you into pitch-black rooms where you can’t even see your weapon in front of you. This can be solved by using your flashlight but when doing so you won’t be able to use any weapons. What this means is that you have to choose between being able to see or fight. This changes everything. When you hear a demon do you quickly switch to your light so you’re able to spot it or do you open fire and hope to hit it in the dark? Fights with Imps among other enemies become interesting as the Imp’s fireball will provide light allowing you to get your bearings. Do you remove the chance of being hit by a fireball by killing the Imp first or do you let it light up the darkness while you take out the other threats? These are all in the moment decisions you find yourself having to make. While Doom 3 isn’t scary it does create a creepy atmosphere via its darkness, and I love that.

The lighting is by far the best part of the visuals but it’s not the only good-looking thing here. Doom 3 came out in 2004 and it still looks great as I write this in 2021. It takes more than just impressive graphical power for a game to age this well. The UAC research base on Mars feels like a real place and this is due to small touches of detail all around you. Opening up a supply locker looking for ammo, health and armour may also lead to you finding someone’s lunch they stored away. Computers around the base can be interacted with to back up the work on them. Of course, you also have the arcade machines in the cafeteria that you can play with. This is saying nothing of the many PDA’s, information stations and so on around the base. Unlike any other Doom game, Doom 3 creates a world that feels real and lived in.

That’s not to say the presentation is flawless because it’s not. The demons have been redesigned almost from the ground up.  While this could have been an interesting chance to reimagine some of the classic monsters, they all just look and sound the same as each other now. For example, during Doom 1, 2, 64, 2016 and Eternal it’s impossible to mix any of the demons up with each other. During Doom 3, however, the Imp, Hellknight, Maggot, Wraith and Arch-vile all look remarkably similar to each other. They are all just grey humanoids covered in blood. This is a shame because the demons in a Doom game really should stand out and they just don’t here.

As for how you’ll be fighting these demons, the combat is fast-paced but far from the blinding speed of modern Doom. The best way I can describe it is a satisfying blend of Call of Duty and Quake. Similar to CoD you will need to use cover while the zombie soldiers are firing at you. Waiting for them to reload or stop firing to advance on you and then unleashing hell always works well. But other demons like the Pinky, Maggot and so on will all rush you so hiding behind cover will only get you killed. I found the most effective strategy with these monsters was to sprint up to them as fast as possible and unload my shotgun into them at point-blank range. Then you have demons like the Imp, Cacodemon and Revenant that fire projectiles at you but ones that can be skillfully dodged or even shot out of the air. This is where the Quake and classic Doom influences shine through. This blend of more modern shooter mechanics and classic ones blend well in my opinion.

Many Doom purists dislike Doom 3 and its change in pace from the earlier games. Other newer fans coming from Doom 2016 and Doom Eternal find its slower pace unexpected. Because of this Doom 3, is very much the most controversial game in the series when it comes to quality. When you look at what Doom 3 is instead of what you wanted it to be, then you start to see a good game. Maybe not one as revolutionary as the classic Doom or as instantly timeless as modern Doom but still a good game. If you enjoyed games like FEAR and Condemned, then you will probably like Doom 3.

Recommendation Rating: 8 out of 10


  1. After reading the review from this blog I have watched the doom 3. And believe it is amazing enough to watch. But they need to get cheap assignment writing service to learn more info to complete their college work. So would highly recommend it to everyone to watch it on the screens and enjoy such kind of activities and entertainment.

  2. Although I have not played Doom 3 yet because all time I have been busy in providing assignment writing services. However, reading your review, it seems a good game that I think everyone should play. Do you have any website link through which it can be purchased or downloaded?