One Doom fan, 300 hours, and one gargantuan level

The first time I ever made a Doom map I simply created a few rooms and hallways, then added a couple of enemies and some ammo. But Ben Mansell created something a little more complex with his first Doom map. After 300 hours and over a year spent on it, Mansell is ready to unleash Four Site into the world. A map so large it will take most players two to three hours to complete. Four Site is massive—essentially four decent-sized Doom maps put together. Each section has its own look and feel, and the pacing is unlike many modern Doom maps…


Dusk is how you make a ’90s shooter for today

Living in the Northeast of the United States, David Szymanski grew up surrounded by the eerie woods and old buildings that dot the landscape in that part of the country. This is an area of the U.S. where you can find what Lovecraftian scholar S.T. Joshi calls “The Miskatonic Region,” the setting for many of the author’s strange and disturbing stories. Since the age of 14, Szymanski has wanted to create a first person shooter set in this part of the U.S. Now 26, he is finally making that dream a reality with Dusk. “I’ve always been a huge fan of Doom/Quake-style FPSs,…

Autobiographical Architecture

A new autobiographical game that will be set in and around Doom II

I’ve never met JP LeBreton but I know him because he knows the original Doom series. He wrote what is probably the most insightful design analysis of the game back in 2010; before he became a level designer for BioShock (2007) he learned the craft with Doom‘s level editor (and then demade his BioShock level “Arcadia” in Doom II); and more recently he had the opportunity to talk at length with one of the original Doom creators John Romero about his work on the game. It does not surprise me when LeBreton tells me “Doom is this thread running through most of…


The Goat, the Devil, and DOOM

The first time Black Phillip, a perfectly normal-looking goat, appears in Robert Eggers’ 2015 horror film The Witch, the viewer is struck with a sense of unease. This isn’t any fault of Phillip’s. If anything, he should be the most reassuring aspect inthe gloomy story of a 17th century family’s exile to the New England wilderness. Within an atmosphere of dread and fear, Phillip all but mugs for the camera in every one of his scenes. He gives his shaggy head a puzzled cock in the middle of a somber barnyard tableau with perfect comedic timing. He rears up to…


Doom mod lets you hangout with the cast of Seinfeld

Here’s something you probably know: Doom II (1994) and Seinfeld (1989-1998) are both pieces of popular culture released in the 1990s. They both had huge audiences and now two decades later, they are still as well known as they were when Bill Clinton was in office. In fact, this year’s Doom was released to great reviews. And you can probably turn TBS on right now and catch an episode of Seinfeld. But here’s something you probably don’t know: Doom and Seinfeld have now been coupled. Yes, thanks to the work of Doug Keener, it is now possible to explore Jerry’s famous apartment in Doom…


DOOM’s soundtrack has hellish secrets of its own

DOOM is a game of many secrets. The fast-paced shooter is filled to the brim with nostalgia-laden easter eggs to discover, catering well to its demographic. It’s no surprise that its soundtrack is bursting with secrets as well, this time of the spectrogram variety, according to eagle-eyed fan TomButcher. It’s no surprise that its soundtrack is bursting with secrets as well A spectrogram is the visualization of the frequencies of sound. While usually acting as most visualizers do—giving the listener some pretty colors to look at while enjoying a song or album—some musicians, like Aphex Twin, have slipped in eerie…


DOOM is another act of rebellion

In the Abrahamic religions—and the texts that have grown out of them—Satan is a fallen angel, cast out of heaven for daring to rebel against God. Though his name is synonymous with fear and evil, it’s Satan’s tireless, implacable need to oppose everything God wills that truly characterizes him. He’s a catch-all for the misfortune of heroes and nations. He’s a scoundrel who’s always up to overturn the plans of the master of the universe.   Back in 1993, id Software’s DOOM was another act of rebellion. Created by a small team of industry upstarts, DOOM (like many contemporary metal…


How Doom inspired two generations of hackers and modders

This article is part of a collaboration with iQ by Intel. A premier first-person shooter, Doom (1993) still inspires programmers, modders and digital artists to adapt the game in unexpected ways. Excitement over the release of Doom 2016 is proof the beloved 24-year-old game series is a pop-culture mainstay. Doom is much more than a big-name franchise about blasting demons in their ugly faces. It’s a rare phenomenon that inspired the DIY gaming movement and continues to spark unbridled creativity among its biggest fans. Since id Software unleashed Doom on PCs in 1993, it has ushered in two entire generations…


Hyperactive shooter DESYNC is made to resemble synesthesia

Beginning in the 20th century, modern design started being dominated by the saying “form follows function.” The idea was that when creating a building, car, or piece of software, pragmatism should come first, and style should be secondary. In Adult Swim’s upcoming game DESYNC, however, style is the function. Taking inspiration from classic shooters like Quake (1996) and Unreal Tournament (1999), DESYNC is a deliberately unrealistic shooter set in a colorful neon world resembling the computer reality of the Tron films. Enemies are abstract collections of polygons and vectors, and players dual-wield guns and swords while jumping dozens of feet into the air…