There’s no denying that video games have come a LONG way from their humble beginnings. Games are no longer just blocks bouncing around a screen, they’re complex worlds which we as players can interact with freely. This has been great for players and the industry, but ever so often something feels missing. It was the recent iteration of Doom that reinvigorated my love for video games, but what was it and why is it that I’m so damn hyped for Doom Eternal?
The modern gaming era has been a marvel to behold, from vast open world to jaw-dropping visuals to heartfelt storytelling, it’s all there. Red Dead Redemption 2 is a prime example with one of the most intricately designed worlds which can freely explored by the player, yet many players found the game a boring and labourious chore. While I loved the experience of RDR2, I do understand the sentiment around the game. It was a huge time investment for many. Being a husband and father, I understand how difficult it is to juggle your time. Games with 100 completion times are daunting when your time is limited. These massive sprawling titles can lose their lustre when the player is unable to sink in the necessary hours. Thus, so many great titles fall by the wayside, as a result of their grand scope.
2016 was a year in transition for me. I had gone through some difficult personal matters, but I had also rekindled my love for gaming through two major titles: Uncharted 4 and Doom. While Uncharted 4 may steal all the plaudits, Doom brought back that pure feeling of fun. Doom was visceral and entertaining, playing to all the strengths that made its predecessors so successful. Everything in the game plays second fiddle to its enjoyable and engrossing gameplay loop. Doom became a great way to let off some steam while inhabiting the Praetor of the most badass video game character out there. It made the player feel powerful and gave you different avenues to unleash that power onto the poor denizens of hell. It was just so much fun. It never felt overwhelming or frustrating, it was just a pure adrenaline rush of video game viscera. It was glorious.
This year is turning out to be one of the biggest years to date. A whole host of titles are still set to drop and many a still frothing at the mouth at the thought of the next-gen dropping late this year. Yet, Doom Eternal is the one title I really want to succeed. That’s not saying I want everything else to fail, but I need it to be the reminder of what made video games so special. It’s not vying in the competitive multiplayer FPS pool, it’s just a title looking to bring joy to the players. Doom Eternal looks like another fun excursion in the boots of the Doom Slayer, a not-so-gentle reminder of why we enjoy games and how games don’t need to massive open worlds to flourish. It’s a reminder that gameplay should always come first and the rest will follow. I truly hope that this year delivers on all fronts…with Doom Eternal leading the charge.
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