Doom 3: BFG Edition

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Guest reviewer Bug Stomper dissects the remastered re-release.

It is difficult to overstate the importance of Doom and Doom 2 as games: they are both absolutely iconic – genre-defining – games of their time. Doom 3, on the other hand, was a bit of a Marmite experience when it was released; many loved it and many hated it. With Doom and Doom 2, I loved the fast pace of the game, the feel of the weaponry, and the level design of Doom 2. With Doom 3, I never warmed to, amongst many things, the plodding pace of play nor its mediocre expansion Resurrection of Evil. Because of this, I approached the BFG Edition with trepidation.  

The whole package can be described as both definitive and underwhelming. Whilst containing everything you can think of that was officially released by iD for Doom, Doom 2 and Doom 3, the enhancements on offer do not justify the price being asked. Both Doom and Doom 2 are as excellent as ever but they feel tacked on rather than enhanced. If you want decent enhancements then you need to investigate the free mods jDoom or Ultimate Super Doom.

As for Doom 3, well, Doom 3 offers a slightly smoother gameplay experience than its original release but if you found it dissappointing first time around then this version isn’t going to change your opinion of the game. The gameplay is still slow, the “shocks” obvious, the “courier” missions tedious and the fire fights unsatisfying. The impatient will discover that you still can’t skip the cutscenes, either. Resurrection of Evil was half baked at best on its release and time has not been kind to this expansion. The new campaign fails to engage and you get the impression that it was originally shelved then rapidly dug out and finished for this release. To get the absolute best out of Doom 3, you’re still going to be downloading the Trent Reznor sound pack to replace the pathetically weak in-game sounds and the Sikkmod to vastly improve the textures.

So where does this leave us? If you’ve ignored the games for years and want to wax nostalgic for a weekend or two then you’ll probably find a lot of value with this release, but if you’ve already played the games through a number of times then there is just not enough to justify the price.

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