Doom 64 (Switch) Review
Doom 64 is an odd game, but make no mistake – it’s still Doom. All the demons you know, and love are here, as are all the weapons, and it looks like a Doom game. However Doom 64 is very different from other Doom titles, and it’s a bit of diamond in the rough.
Doom 64 released before GoldenEye 007 in America, but here in PAL regions we got it after, and it was a bit forgotten about. Compared to GoldenEye, and even Turok, Doom 64 looked a bit old hat. Perhaps that judgement was a bit unfair because Doom 64, despite being just a little bit different to other Doom games, and a bit behind console FPS games at the time still manages to be a bit of fun.
Doom 64 isn’t a port of Doom, but instead apparently a sequel to those games. The games give out the minimal story, none in fact – you pick up your shotgun, and off you go blasting. Doom 64 as a shooter, very similar to other Doom games, but it’s level designs, and puzzles give you a different experience.
What Doom 64 does differently is how it looks. The levels are rendered with proper 3D now and feature amazing moody lighting effects. Demons all sound different, the weapons effects are different, and there’s no thumping soundtrack. Instead, the tighter levels are filled with ambient music and growls to creep you out – it’s not very metal.
While the combat is the same, the game has more of a puzzling way to get through the campaign. There’s still the red, yellow and, blue keys to get through doors but now there are switch and teleport puzzles thrown in. Doom had these before, but instead, now you’ll find that you’ll flip a switch and have to see what triggered before time runs out, or flip a second switch to get what you want.
Doom 64 is also a singleplayer only affair, something that in the split-screen Nintendo 64 era didn’t go down so well. There are 30+ levels to work your way through, with some new ones exclusive to this release. The length of the game is fine, as long as you know what you’re getting when you buy it.
The Switch version of the games runs just sublime holding a steady 60fps framerate; I did find it a little dark in handheld – even with the in-game brightness options tweaked as well. Motion controls have also included in the game, but you’ll hardly need them, you can’t look up and down; instead, you use them to turn left and right. Everything looks a bit more devilish as well with the higher resolution with details on monsters more apparent; the lighting effects as well have been faithfully reproduced here. The port also adds a FOV slider, anti-aliasing options and you can change the blood colour to green for that authentic Japanese version feeling.
Doom 64 is a different experience, it’s still Doom, but it’s like your favourite movie got directed by someone else and had to make everything from scratch again. While still fun all these years later, it’s still a bit of-its-times, but that’s part of the charm. It’s Doom, done just a little bit different.
- Doom with a different flavour
- Runs perfectly on the Switch
- More Doom
- Won't take long to complete
- Passwords use an in-game keyboard which is rubbish