The return of the fabled DOOM franchise, nearly 12 years after DOOM 3 and one of our most anticipated games of 2016, is mere months away. Developer id Software has in the meantime only released RAGE in 2011, outside of an updated version of Quake III Arena called Quake Live, whose sequel was reportedly canned in favor of moving the team to continue work on DOOM 4. Yesterday, publisher Bethesda revealed Doom's May release date alongside a new story trailer.
The 2016 iteration of DOOM, originally titled DOOM 4 but now touted as a reboot, comes packed with the series’ old school arena style multiplayer as well as the iconic DOOM marine trekking through the Union Aerospace Corporation Facility in its single-player campaign. The original DOOM is recognized by its classic ‘one marine fighting a horde of demons’ box art but at the end of the new DOOM campaign trailer (and last night during Conan O'Brien), fans were shown the official box art for the new modern take on the property... and many were left disappointed.
The new DOOM cover, in stark contrast to DOOM 1993’s iconic hand-drawn art, features the lone 3D rendered heavily-armored marine simply standing behind the ‘DOOM’ logo. Heavy backlash has ensued for its lack of creativity after the box art was also displayed during Conan O’Brien’s Clueless Gamer segment on his late night show.
The bits of gameplay footage in the Clueless Gamer segment showcased a few new environments and boss fights as well as some weapons from previous videos. The day before the official DOOM trailer was unveiled, Bethesda’s Vice President of PR and Marketing Pete Hines responded to a fan on Twitter saying the reveal for the box art would be “coming soon,” indicating what we saw is indeed the final cover.
While the new art may be generic and not be as ambitious as its predecessors, Bethesda will hope id Software’s return to classic first person shooter gameplay will attract a large fan base to the DOOM franchise after 12 years of absence.
Its multiplayer may only have to compete against Halo 5’s as the two surviving arena style shooters of the modern era. As the game’s May launch comes right before Bethesda’s 2016 E3 conference - the first ever - gamers have been scratching their heads on how the publisher can fill 90 or more minutes of time with Dishonored 2 gameplay and the possible reveal of Machine Games’ Wolfenstein 2. An announcement for The Elder Scrolls 6 isn't likely, although fans of Fallout 4 might finally see what is to come in the game’s DLC season pass.
DOOM releases May 13, 2016 for PC. PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.