Doom is widely considered one of the greatest first-person shooter franchises of all time. Just about every game in the series got its fair share of critical acclaim, and the latest entry, Doom Eternal, was particularly well-received.
Unfortunately, as great as some of the older games are, they can be a bit inaccessible for those who are new to the Doom universe — the retro graphics, animations, and controls likely dissuade some potential players.
Fortunately, all is not lost for those who want to try the older Doom games but can’t quite stomach the outdated aesthetics.
Modder “gamehacker” over at ModDB has been diligently working on “Doom Reborn” for years now. Doom Reborn is a standalone project that, when finished, will effectively be a full rebuild of both Doom 1 and 2, but in the id Tech 4 engine (the same engine Doom 3 ran on).
This means the core gameplay concepts will be largely the same, but with improved graphics and controls. As you can see in the video above, the visuals are still a far cry from what you’d see in Doom 2016 or Doom Eternal, and we’re sure many Doom fans will still prefer the look and feel of the original games, but they’re certainly higher-fidelity than before.
Of course, the mod is still not finished. Many levels are still under construction, and it’ll probably be a while before gamehacker manages to complete them all. However, if you aren’t already an old-school Doom purist, the mod’s latest version — 1.65 — could be a great way to introduce yourself to the series’ roots. It brings several graphical enhancements, support for widescreen resolutions, a WIP version of Doom 2’s 10th map, and a handful of bug fixes.
You can download and run Doom Reborn with just a couple of clicks. You don’t need to have any of the Doom games installed to play it, and it seems to be relatively stable (if un-optimized) based on my brief experiences with it.