2016's Doom rebooted the beloved first-person shooter franchise for modern times. Instead of adapting modern conventions, it updated all the things that made the original so memorable. There's no aiming down the sights, long cinematics, or even reloading; it's all frantic FPS goodness. The road to that game was a long and arduous one. In fact, a whole other game in development for years was scrapped before this project came to fruition. That ill-fated project, known as Doom 4, remains a mystery to this day, but bits of information have trickled out in the years since its demise. Here are ten things you never knew about the cancelled Doom 4.
10 It Was A Loose Doom 2 Remake
Doom 3 followed a similar trajectory to the original Doom. It took place on a Mars colony that got infested with demons. The player fights their way through the station and eventually through hell itself to save the day. Doom 4 would have given the same treatment to Doom 2. The classics have almost no narrative, but Doom 2 takes place on Earth, and the fourth title was set on the planet as well. It also wasn't necessarily a direct sequel to Doom 3, but the logical next step.
9 It Was Going To Be More Cinematic
The most recent iteration of the series has the perfect amount of storytelling. A narrative is present throughout, but cutscenes never run too long and never slow down the action. Doom 4 was set to take a different approach entirely.
The failed project intended to have big cinematics exploring the world and what a hellish invasion of Earth would really feel like. Instead of the fun romp it always was, it looks like they were aiming for a more serious tone.
8 Development Started In 2007
It's no secret that games take a long time to make. Doom 4 started production around 2007, three years after Doom 3 came out. Nine years is an especially long time to make a game, but that's because the project was restarted from scratch sometime after 2010.
It takes a lot of integrity to throw away years of hard work to go back to square one, but sometimes it is the right call to make. Think about all that happened in the world between 2007 and 2016 and how through all that change, a team of people were crafting Doom.
7 Melee Finishers
The melee finishers are a standout feature of 2016's Doom. They force the player to get up close and personal for a final, brutal strike against an opponent. The game encourages players to do them, as enemies drop more loot afterwards.
Considering the differences between the final product and Doom 4, it may come as a surprise to learn these finishers originated during the cancelled game's development. It was just about the only thing to survive between the transition from Doom 4 to what became the modern classic players know and love.
6 John Carmack
John Carmack was one of Id Software's founders and lead programmer on most of their classic titles. In 2013, he left the company to focus on VR technology, specifically the Oculus Rift. His main reason for leaving was his desire to work on the burgeoning technology, and his current position at Id was restricting his ability to do so.
Unfortunately, it also meant his exit from the Doom series and involvement in future projects in the series. Evidence points to his frustration at the state of Doom 4 at the time of his departure.
5 Why It Was Cancelled
Games get the ax for any number of reasons. Maybe funding runs dry, or the game isn't meeting the parent company's standards. Doom 4's final days are a little different. It was the team's decision to restart development.
According to them, while everything was working and falling into place, the game was shaping up so that it no longer felt like Doom. They claimed it didn't have the soul of a Doom game. Fans will never truly know how different from the series it would have been, and maybe that is for the best.
4 Its Characters
All people have to go on for Doom 4 is leaked footage from 2016. In addition to a shotgun battle with imps, a zombie, and a test of the glory kill system, several characters are also present in the cinematics.
No other information exists about who these characters were, but it does prove the game was going to involve a large cast. 2016's Doom has only a few characters, and Doom 3 also had a small cast, so it was a clear sign that Doom 4 had different ambitions than the other games in the series.
3 Game Engine
Doom 4 was running on the Id Tech 5 engine. This was a step up from Doom 3, which was on Id Tech 4, but a step behind the 2016 game, which would use Id Tech 6. While this game never saw the light of day, the engine still got plenty of mileage.
Rage, Wolfenstein: The New Order, and The Evil Within were a few of the big titles that utilized it. The engine was extremely impressive at the time, and the aforementioned games' graphics still hold up.
2 Frame Rate
Many of Id's games aim for sixty frames per second. In modern times this is a rarity, but the company remains mostly true to this. Doom 4 was set to hit this mark on PCs, assuming one had the right rig, but the console versions were settling for thirty. It was one concession they had to make in order to get enough enemies on screen at the same time for the more bombastic sequences. They did say the multiplayer would have been sixty FPS on all platforms, however.
1 Call Of Doom
It has already been established that the game moved away from the staples of classic Doom. The development team was aware of this as well, and came to nickname the title "Call of Doom." It's not necessarily a slight - the Call of Duty franchise is a best-selling series, after all- but probably not what most fans wanted out of Doom.
Self-awareness is vital in all spheres of life. For the team making Doom 4, it was this reflection that gave them second thoughts about the game's direction, causing them to scrap it.