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10 Years of Doom

Ten years ago on December 10th, 1993, id Software released the Doom shareware, forever changing the world of PC games. Doom pretty much defined the very young first person shooter genera, and set the bar for future games to come. With immersive, colorful levels, deadly enemies and some of the greatest gameplay any game has ever seen, Doom can be best described as nothing short of a masterpiece. Even to this day it is still cited as one of the best and most signifigant games made.

One of the major contributors to Doom's success was the shareware wad. id released an entire episode, nine full maps, for people to enjoy, offering the full game to those willing to pay. After all was said and done id emerged as a powerhouse, the company to look up to, the guys who delivered. Now, on the brink of Doom 3's release ten years later, they are still very much that company. Sure, some of the faces have changed, and they're now another Doom and three Quake games removed, but they're still going strong and still setting precedents when it comes to FPS games.

Another major factor in Doom's popularity was its ability to be modified. While id had never originally intended for users to make their own levels, monsters, weapons ane executable modifications, it soon became clear that fans were going to do so anyway, and so id embraced the community. Commercial products like Final Doom and the Master Levels were all made by users, and id even released their very own editing utilities for people to use and learn from.

Over the years the user community grew and strengthened. A vast amount of talent crafted level editors, nodes builders, maps, modifications and more. Then in 1997, id released the source code to Doom's executable itself. This allowed some of the same talented individuals to modify the very inner workings of Doom. Multiple bugs such as visplane overflows were fixed, and additions were made such as OpenGL capabilities, high resolutions, true 3D floors, slopes, scripting, and more. The executable was also extended for multiplayer, adding support for more than four players, TCP/IP support and a variety of other extensions.

Speaking of multiplayer, Doom is the game responsible for deathmatch, one of the most popular online game modes in the world. For the first time players could dial up to their friends anywhere (as long as they were willing to foot the phone bill) and play Doom against one another over a modem. Doom's multiplayer was also extremly well balanced, and arguably is one of the most well balanced deathmatch games to date. In fact a few source ports have even spawned on the very premise of multiplayer and have thrived.

So what does Doomworld have in store for you? Well, over the next few days we'll be taking a look into some of the things that have keep Doom alive for all these years. From source ports, to user made maps, to the art of demo recording and what is no doubt going to be a gigantic 10 years /newstuff Chronicles. Stay tuned folks.

2004 Awards

10 Years of Doom was written by Mike "Cyb" Watson and Andrew "Linguica" Stine unless otherwise noted.