Normally I don't review PC games but in the case of Doom 3 I feel it is necessary because I have very fond memories of the original Doom games.
Back in 1993 the original Doom and the sequel Doom 2, which was also developed using the Doom Engine is a classic, remembered for its free roaming, monster gunning and key finding gameplay (not to mention the invention of the mod and the word 'frag'). Doom 3 has taken everything that made Doom great, thrown some of it out the window and left us with something that plays more like System Shock 2. System Shock 2 was not a bad game by any means, but it was just not 'Doom'. Doom 3 as it is plays a lot more like any other person shooter out there these days but with one major difference, this one will actually make you jump a few times. Unless of course you have cheats on and no, 'iddqd' no longer works for invincibility.
To make Doom 3 scary they have opted to make the game darker rather than having hordes of monsters come at you after acquiring a key, of course there are still a few of those moments in Doom 3. The original weapons are back with some changes to the line up. The new guns include a machine gun and a grenade launcher.
As I said Doom 3 is darker than the old Doom games and by darker I mean you have to carry a torch around almost everywhere you go. This can be a problem as the torch is just a torch, sure you can hit monsters with it but it would have been better if they had attached it to a gun, maybe allow you to carry a torch and a gun at the same time. The other thing about making a game as dark as this is it is next to impossible to play this during the day with any decent degree of sight of the in game action, thus getting you killed in most cases anyway.
When monsters attack you in this game your head moves forcing you to look away for a second or two and this can be a problem at times, in the case of Imps; sometimes giving them enough time to get close enough to scratch you. The monsters in Doom 3 look very different from those of the original Dooms for example the new Cacodemons are not as cute as the original Doom Cacodemons. It was a bit of a let down to see them look evil for the first time, but that is Doom for you and they were not really meant to look cute in the original it was probably just a side effect of being big round and having a nice grin.
Once again the story takes place on Mars and once again the scientists are mucking around with technology they do not really understand and end up bringing hell to their proverbial front door. When the souls of the dead show up you are treated to some nice eye candy in the form of flying skulls, don't worry though they are perfectly harmless until they get a hold of the other humans and turn them into Zombies. In this Doom you can tell that ID Software's story telling skills have really come a long way in the past few years, maybe they have learnt something from the other story driven first person shooters like Deus Ex and Half Life. If the aforementioned story sounds familiar it is because this isn't so much a sequel, as it is a retelling of the original Doom story.
As a small bonus to gamers picking up Doom 3 early or pre-ordering it ID Software has included a limited edition Doom 3 Mancubus figure, not bad for a bonus, some shops even offered a Demon figure to pre-orders as well, a great deal for virtual-blood thirsty gamers. The music in Doom 3 is great and suits the dark atmosphere perfectly, it has a rock theme similar to that of Quake 2 created by former Nine Inch Nails member, Chris Vrenna. The sounds effects in Doom 3 are also great, one of my pet hates in the original Doom games was the sound effect of the Imp/Hell Knight/Barron of Hell scratch attacks and well I am glad it is not in this remake.
Of course Doom is known for some of the best Bosses in action games, such as the Cyberdemon and Spiderdemon's in the original doom and the giant Satan head in Doom 2. Of course, Doom 3 has the Cyberdemon and a few new boss monsters. I wont spoil any of the new bosses for you though, as one of the best things about a new Doom game is discovering the new bosses and new weapons!
Multiplayer has been left out in the cold in this game, with no co-op play out of the box and only 4 player death match it could be down to the mod community to give gamers the death match they are looking for.
System Requirements -
Video Card: 64MB 100% DirectX 9.0b compatible 3D Accelerator card Geforce
3/Ti or higher and latest drivers
O/S: English version of Windows XP
CPU: Pentium 4 1.5GHz or AMD Athlon XP 1500+ or higher
CD Rom Drive: 8x or faster and latest drivers
Hard Drive space: 2.2 GB plus 400mb for windows swap file
Sound Card: DirectX 9.0b compatible 16 bit Sound Card and latest drivers
WindowsXP/2000 compatible mouse and keyboard and latest drivers
Direct X 9b (included with Doom 3)
Multiplayer Requirements -
Internet TCP/IP and LAN TCP/IP play supported
Internet play requires a broadband connection and latest drivers
LAN play requires a Network Interface Card and latest drivers