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Doom III: Resurrection of Evil

Doom

After playing through Half-Life 2, I took a good look back at Doom III. I reviewed Doom III right around the time when it was originally released and slapped down a firm “10/10” for a score and proclaimed it to be spectacular. Then Half-Life 2 came out, and things changed. As I tried to go back to Doom III after conquering Half-Life 2, it wasn’t the same, mainly, because it wasn’t as fun. Doom III never really challenges you to do anything but destroy.

Half-Life 2, on the other hand, demanded something more of you besides quick reflexes and night vision and inevitably turned out to feel more refined and complete game. But, Doom III has a chance to trump Half-Life 2 because once more Doom III is the first out of the gate, only this time with its first expansion pack. Doom III: Resurrection of Evil sends us back to that famed Mars Facility, but does it add enough scares to warrant a purchase?

Once again, Resurrection of Evil has you charging into the shadows with a flash-light in-hand. Resurrection of Evil is nothing more than an expansion pack to the game, for better or for worse. At its best, it is a continuation of the same gameplay that you’ve already experienced in Doom III with a few minor enhancements. It is safe to say then that if you hated Doom III or got really bored with it that you aren’t going to like Resurrection of Evil.

However, if you did like Doom III and craved more carnage, this is for you. You’re going to find more of the same shadowed corridors that freaked you out. You’re going to find more of the same enemies that jumped out at you. And you’re going to find that, while it isn’t perfect, Resurrection of Evil does manage to make Doom III a slightly better game.

First and foremost, Resurrection of Evil starts off a lot more action-packed than Doom III did. The game stars an all-new soldier that has come to Mars two years after the original events of Doom III, led by a team of scientists and surrounded by fellow soldiers with the intention of investigating what went on at the facility and a strange signal that’s coming out of it. Immediately following the end of the first cinematic, you’re the only one who’s left on the away team and there are demons there to kill you. This works particularly well for Resurrection of Evil because I was already familiar with Doom III and I really just wanted to hop back into the action again.

You start off with your standard pistol yet again as you explore some of the spacious caverns of Mars while running for your life. As soon as you realize that the pistol is as powerful as a pea-shooter against a tank, you’re given a new tool which just so happens to be the biggest addition to Resurrection of Evil entirely: the grabber. The grabber is just that – it grabs stuff. Not only does it grab stuff, it also takes that stuff it grabs and flings it away. Before you run off thinking that the developers just “grabbed” this from Half-Life 2, there are some key differences.

For starters, you can’t lift up everything in Resurrection of Evil; in fact, most things can’t be even moved with the grabber. Also, you can only hold onto things for a specific period of time before the grabber presumably overheats and it drops the object. Ultimately, the grabber is way too underutilized (primarily only for grabbing enemy projectile attacks and shooting them back at them); however, I don’t think many people will complain that it is as overpowered as the one in Half-Life 2.

That’s not the only tool added to your arsenal. The developers also went back into Doom’s history and pulled out the one weapon they’d left behind: the super shotgun. I have memories still fresh in my mind of laying scores of demons to waste with the double-barreled shotgun from Doom II, so seeing it in action in Doom III was quite a thrill. Once again, balancing the weapon was obviously important to the developers, so reloading takes a noticeably longer time than other weapons, but at least every standard enemy dies in a single blast from the weapon.

Graphically, Resurrection of Evil looks about the same as Doom III did: lots of shadows with some intense looking enemies. As I mentioned before, Resurrection of Evil does open up the game a little bit, with a few areas in the game featuring higher ceilings and wider hallways, though the game still relies on lots of tight areas to strike fear into your heart. The audio remains unchanged, but sadly there are less narrated emails for your in-game PDA.

This is a game for Doom III fans. It’s not quite good enough to convert haters, but fans of the game should definitely pick this one up. Resurrection of Evil ultimately fails on innovation but perhaps just as importantly succeeds with expansion. It’s more of the same, for better or for worse.

8 out of 10

The author of this fine article

is an Associate Editor at Thunderbolt, having joined in February 2003.

Gentle persuasion

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