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EtherBot

Interesting context about the Doom 3 shotgun

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Posted (edited)

From the Making of Doom 3 artbook thing:


 

Spoiler

 

image.png.0c3c36340905d0e99c7dd2a91c23f6e1.png

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relevant bits transcribed:

 

"In the past, he who controlled the rocket launcher controlled the game, particularly when playing in multiplayer modes. You just fired the rocket at your enemy and, by virtue of firing the rocket, you cooked him. In DOOM 3, however, rockets often miss their mark. [...] With the change of weaponry, the shotgun has emerged as the weapon of choice around id. 'Shotgun is your up close and personal weapon,' says Willits. [...] Shotgun fire spreads, and the weapon range is limited; but even taking the spread into account, aim in the general vicinity of your target, and you will generally leave some damage behind." (page 144-145)

The idea seems to be that in the original game, the rocket launcher could be wielded sloppily, and was the default weapon for deathmatch because of that. In DOOM 3, however. the swap to full 3D aiming made rockets less reliable because you could often shoot over the enemies, on the floor in front of them, or literally in between their limbs (something that didnt happen with the collision detection originally used on the sprites from og doom) so the shotgun's massive spread was designed as a replacement. In essence, the intention was that aiming wouldn't be as essential while using the shotgun, because it hit just about everything on screen. In contrast to the rocket launcher, which was a mid to long range weapon due to the splash damage, the shotgun is useful in close combat specifically, which is something emphasized a lot.

 

It's kind of funny that they definitely really wanted the shotgun to be the default weapon in Doom 3. "The best one" or "your favorite one." In practice, some of their intentions hold true. You certainly use the shotgun more than any other weapon. I think this close range, aiming-downplayed style of fighting was meant to be reliable as long as the player is mobile, hence the sprint, I suppose. It's definitely kind of intense.

 

Honestly I think if they made it fire more pellets or made the pellets do more damage it wouldn't feel so absurd to shoot something at mid range and do virtually no damage at all.

 

Spoiler

 

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lol

 

edit: after some thinking, I realized that it seems like the super shotgun from Resurrection of Evil is literally everything they wanted the shotgun to be.

Edited by EtherBot : some clarification

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Posted (edited)

The shotgun is fine as it is, correct me if I'm wrong (haven't played Doom 3 in a bit :p) but excluding bosses it can kill anything that isn't an HK, Mancubus or Pinky in 1 shot (and Pinkies die in 2), and because you're so fast compared to the enemies, it's easy to get in and out again without being hit. Yeah it's stupid that it tickles anything more than 2 feet away, but its design makes perfect sense in the context of the game.

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Posted (edited)
8 minutes ago, xdarkmasterx said:

The shotgun is fine as it is, correct me if I'm wrong (haven't played Doom 3 in a bit :p) but excluding bosses it can kill anything that isn't an HK, Mancubus or Pinky in 1 shot (and Pinkies die in 2), and because you're so fast compared to the enemies, it's easy to get in and out again without being hit. Yeah it's stupid that it tickles anything more than 2 feet away, but its design makes perfect sense in the context of the game.

I actually really like the combat rhythm provided by the game forcing you to run in close to enemies, which I sort of touched on. I would argue it's definitely really unsatisfying to use the shotgun any other way, but one could argue that this is kind of good design(?) since the player isnt supposed to use the shotgun any other way. In practice it's just really ironic when viewed in the context of the previous games' shotguns which were sort of sniping tools more than anything.

 

However, lately I've starting hitting the imps with a shotgun from mid range and swapping to the machine gun to finish them off. Usually they were literally like 5 bullets from the machine gun from dying, which shows you how much the shotgun does reliably hurt things, even if the enemy doesnt die in one hit. I would argue the shotgun feels flimsy because of the lack of consistent pain reactions from enemies, not because of any shotgun-related stats (or sound design). That's my opinion though.

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Posted (edited)
2 minutes ago, EtherBot said:

I actually really like the combat rhythm provided by the game forcing you to run in close to enemies, which I sort of touched on. I would argue it's definitely really unsatisfying to use the shotgun any other way, but one could argue that this is kind of good design(?) since the player isnt supposed to use the shotgun any other way. In practice it's just really ironic when viewed in the context of the previous games' shotguns which were sort of sniping tools more than anything.

 

However, lately I've starting hitting the imps with a shotgun from mid range and swapping to the machine gun to finish them off. Usually they were literally like 5 bullets from the machine gun from dying, which shows you how much the shotgun does reliably hurt things, even if the enemy doesnt die in one hit. I would argue the shotgun feels flimsy because of the lack of consistent pain reactions from enemies, not because of any of the actual shotgun related stats (or sound design). That's my opinion though.

 

True, that. The "modern" doom games but Doom 3 especially have a real problem with satisfying gore and damage (Who had the bright idea to make demons and gibs fade out 0.00000000000001 seconds after you kill them? That should be a performance option not the only way >_<). Would be nice to see some stun/pain animation and more blood even if it's only superficial

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2 minutes ago, xdarkmasterx said:

Would be nice to see some stun/pain animation and more blood even if it's only superficial

I know they had a neat in-house physics engine and ragdoll effects and stuff, obviously not as renowned as HL2 or anything. But it would be cool if, for instance, taking a significant portion of an enemies health in a single hit from something like a shotgun caused it to actually stumble backwards, or even fall to the ground before getting up (and I'm sort of specifically thinking of the wonk hit-animation from those Quake 1 soldier monsters). I think it's possibly more empowering than the devs wanted but on one hand it might add to the visceral "aliens-esque" aesthetic they were going for, to have an imp or something closing in on you in a tight space and to physically blast it backwards away from u to give yourself some precious breathing room.

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Wanted to hit everything in sight you say...

 

Huh, I guess I can see what they were aiming for (no pun intended), but what they ultimately ended up doing was making it deadly at point blank and useless for everything else. This could be attributed to the fact that instead of making the shells increase their spread with distance, they already spread ridiculously once the gun was fired. A change like this would have made all the difference in the world.

 

This is also how HL2's Shotgun works, for reference, and as a result it remains viable for killing targets at medium range and a bit farther than that. But I disagree that Doom 3's Shotgun was used by players non-stop, if anything many avoided it due to its ridiculous spread, the heavy lifting weapon was the SMG and Plasma in this game, plus the RL and the Grenades. RoE's SSG is likely what they intended to do with the regular shotgun, since it's a lot more useful, but they executed the idea poorly.

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the shotgun was pretty frustrating tbh. the cone's angle was 22 degrees. This is on par with the spread of a zombie in the original doom, but it's also worse since can also be in any direction, not just horizontally. It sucked a lot of fun out of the weapon, and as mentioned I found myself more fond of the game's other weapons. For reference, the pistol has no spread, the machinegun has a 1 degree cone, and the chaingun has a 5 degree cone.

 

Fun fact: the RoE SSG has a tighter spread (vertically, at least) than the normal shotgun.

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19 hours ago, seed said:

But I disagree that Doom 3's Shotgun was used by players non-stop, if anything many avoided it due to its ridiculous spread, the heavy lifting weapon was the SMG and Plasma in this game, plus the RL and the Grenades

Personally speaking the ability to oneshot something is invaluable on harder difficulty settings. If you're good at aiming for the head, the SMG is very powerful though. I find even after acquiring the plasma rifle I'm still guaranteed taking at least some damage before the enemy dies if I don't use the shotgun or the chainsaw. They both require you to run right up to the enemies chest so its sort of a bizarre distinction lmao. Shotgun is more reliable though, in my opinion.

 

I agree the SSG was 100% what they were going for. In a lot of ways that game feels like the necessary final third of Doom 3 to me (more balanced weapons, has a boss fight against Betruger etc).

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The D3 shotgun is an enigma, it is arguably the most powerful shotgun in the series, yet it essentially requires you to use it like the Doom 1/2 BFG, that being said at pointblank in order to actually one-to-two shot anything that isn't a boss monster.

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On 7/22/2020 at 7:24 AM, EtherBot said:

 it would be cool if, for instance, taking a significant portion of an enemies health in a single hit from something like a shotgun caused it to actually stumble backwards, or even fall to the ground before getting up

 

Rage did this really well.

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16 hours ago, TheGamePhilosophe said:

 

Rage did this really well.

this is true! I actually played a little bit of Rage to "benchmark" my PC the other day and didn't even think about it haha

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Posted (edited)

Even if it behaves how they wanted it to behave, it's still a piss-poor shotgun. At ten feet you have a spread of six feet both vertical and horizontal. It was never acceptable. They got the shotgun right in the original Doom, it was accurate at distance, and devastating to Imps and Former Humans at close range. The SSG was OP, probably too OP, but that's why we love it. The shotgun in Doom behaved like an actual shotgun, with the correct choke, and due to the horizontal pattern I'm guessing it's a waterfowl choke, you can be accurate out to 20 yards at least, and get most of the shot on target. With a full choke I've hit targets dead center at 30 yards, with a spread of around 4 inches. Shotguns aren't inaccurate firearms. Use a rifled slug and get dead center at 100 yards. The six foot spread was annoying.

 

The only other game I can think of that did shotguns justice, aside from Doom, is Soldier of Fortune 2. With 00 buckshot, you're essentially shooting someone 8 or 9 times (depending on the load, I've seen 3 inch shells with 12 pellets) with a .33 caliber lead ball, at the same time. But they aren't inaccurate as long as you have a choke in the barrel.

Edited by Jello

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I guess accuracy nerf was given mostly because of shotgun's ridiculous damage output on headshots. If it could reliably hit heads then it would be just too good, in my opinion.

 

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Posted (edited)

I didn't really mind the Doom 3 shotgun, it felt satisfying to sprint towards a demon and quickly kill them by blasting them in the chest or face, or fooling the HK into trying to bite you, dodging his bites and shooting him in the chest or face, It was like a glorified melee weapon. I may have been playing the game wrong since I probably could have just switched to another weapon but the shotgun just felt more satisfying to use, especially on Veteran.

 

Though I did occasionally switch to MG to take care of souls and trites, and RL for Revenants and Viles.

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On 7/26/2020 at 11:32 PM, Jello said:

Even if it behaves how they wanted it to behave, it's still a piss-poor shotgun. At ten feet you have a spread of six feet both vertical and horizontal. It was never acceptable. They got the shotgun right in the original Doom, it was accurate at distance, and devastating to Imps and Former Humans at close range. The SSG was OP, probably too OP, but that's why we love it. The shotgun in Doom behaved like an actual shotgun, with the correct choke, and due to the horizontal pattern I'm guessing it's a waterfowl choke, you can be accurate out to 20 yards at least, and get most of the shot on target. With a full choke I've hit targets dead center at 30 yards, with a spread of around 4 inches. Shotguns aren't inaccurate firearms. Use a rifled slug and get dead center at 100 yards. The six foot spread was annoying.


Yeah, and this is made far more infuriating when you discover that the shotgun Z-Sec have a spread of 5 over the player's 22. Changing the player shotgun's spread to five makes it usable even at long distance, but head shots are impossible that way and a few pellets will miss. Reduce the damage of 14 a pellet to 10 a pellet and it deals exactly 130 damage when all 13 pellets connect to the torso. I think that makes it much more satisfying to use and not be unbalanced, especially when you consider its ridiculously short tube, of which I changed the capacity to half of its original count, reducing to 4. Re-balanced the reload time by making it one shell at a time.

Oh I'm sorry, I'm sorta going off-topic but yeah if you don't like the way it operates just tweak it yourself!

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In my personal little mod I gave the shotgun a spread of 6 and reduced the pellet damage to balance it out. Feels like the original Doom shotgun, it's an excellent mid-range weapon now.

 

In my first playthrough of Doom 3 after a while I got used to the shotgun being only effective at close range and adapted my playstyle. It works, but it still feels weird.

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Posted (edited)

Civvie 11 said it best:

 

"You can't fucking hit anything with it unless you stick it up a demon's nose!"

 

 

Good thing you can edit the function of the shotgun by editing the pak000 and pak006.pk4 files.

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On 7/28/2020 at 3:40 AM, Lila Feuer said:


Yeah, and this is made far more infuriating when you discover that the shotgun Z-Sec have a spread of 5 over the player's 22. Changing the player shotgun's spread to five makes it usable even at long distance, but head shots are impossible that way and a few pellets will miss. Reduce the damage of 14 a pellet to 10 a pellet and it deals exactly 130 damage when all 13 pellets connect to the torso. I think that makes it much more satisfying to use and not be unbalanced, especially when you consider its ridiculously short tube, of which I changed the capacity to half of its original count, reducing to 4. Re-balanced the reload time by making it one shell at a time.

Oh I'm sorry, I'm sorta going off-topic but yeah if you don't like the way it operates just tweak it yourself!

On 7/28/2020 at 3:40 AM, Lila Feuer said:


Yeah, and this is made far more infuriating when you discover that the shotgun Z-Sec have a spread of 5 over the player's 22. Changing the player shotgun's spread to five makes it usable even at long distance, but head shots are impossible that way and a few pellets will miss. Reduce the damage of 14 a pellet to 10 a pellet and it deals exactly 130 damage when all 13 pellets connect to the torso. I think that makes it much more satisfying to use and not be unbalanced, especially when you consider its ridiculously short tube, of which I changed the capacity to half of its original count, reducing to 4. Re-balanced the reload time by making it one shell at a time.

Oh I'm sorry, I'm sorta going off-topic but yeah if you don't like the way it operates just tweak it yourself!

 

That's what I did. My stats for my shotgun are as follows.

 

Spread: 6

Damage: 16 per pellet(24 pellets)[384 total]

Reload Rate: 1 shell

 

   So my shotgun is OP as hell. But I love it anyway because when I hit a zombie with it, they go flying across the room and it's funny. :)

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To tell ya the truth, I'm pretty disappointed in id for buying into the "Short-Range Shotgun" trope with Doom 3.

 

If you want to make the shotgun the "default" weapon, make an accurate but weaker pump and a less accurate but stronger super shotgun... it's like the standard formula. Instead they almost made the shotgun into like... a single barrel super shotgun, power and all. Which, in my opinions makes the inclusion of the super shotgun in RoE that much more bizarre and nonsensical.

 

14 hours ago, Hot_Pink_Doomguy said:

Good thing you can edit the function of the shotgun by editing the pak000 and pak006.pk4 files.

 

You mean with notepad? I've never really tried editing Doom 3.

 

 

 

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8 hours ago, Hellektronic said:

To tell ya the truth, I'm pretty disappointed in id for buying into the "Short-Range Shotgun" trope with Doom 3.

 

If you want to make the shotgun the "default" weapon, make an accurate but weaker pump and a less accurate but stronger super shotgun... it's like the standard formula. Instead they almost made the shotgun into like... a single barrel super shotgun, power and all. Which, in my opinions makes the inclusion of the super shotgun in RoE that much more bizarre and nonsensical.

 

 

You mean with notepad? I've never really tried editing Doom 3.

 

 

 

Yeah. You're gonna need 7-zip to edit the .pk4 files. Trust me. Once you fix the shotgun, DOOM 3 will be a bit faster.

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You can edit the def and script files for monsters, weapons, items, player, just about everything with notepad!

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On 8/19/2020 at 9:57 AM, Hellektronic said:

To tell ya the truth, I'm pretty disappointed in id for buying into the "Short-Range Shotgun" trope with Doom 3.

 

If you want to make the shotgun the "default" weapon, make an accurate but weaker pump and a less accurate but stronger super shotgun... it's like the standard formula. Instead they almost made the shotgun into like... a single barrel super shotgun, power and all. Which, in my opinions makes the inclusion of the super shotgun in RoE that much more bizarre and nonsensical.

 

 

You mean with notepad? I've never really tried editing Doom 3.

On 8/19/2020 at 9:57 AM, Hellektronic said:

Yeah, it's really not that hard. You just need to use WinRar or 7-zip to get into the .pk4 files(the game's main files)

 

 

 

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I hate the ridiculous spread that's like slinging birdshot through a rifled bore, it's worthless at 10yds, but I really like the look, the nice *THUMP!* it makes, and I love how you reload two shells at a time.

I'd change it to have a good and tight spread, so it can be used reliably at 25yds, adjust its damage down a bit to compensate, then shorten the magazine to like 6.

 

As said, the classic shotgun actually has pretty realistic range (see also Duke Nukem 3D's shotgun, as well as Quake's shotgun, even though that's more of a pistol tier weapon), and I think it's really funny that old wild and unrealistic shooters like those depict shotguns quite fairly, yet many later games which pride themselves on supposed realism (some which otherwise actually do a good job), still depict shotguns as melee weapons.

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Did anyone else read that bit about per-pixel collision detection and think to themselves "wait this doesn't sound even remotely fun"?

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By the way, what is that weird dingus that pokes out the front of the gun? A pry bar? Some sort of non sharp bayonet thing for jabbing people with? One of those hooks you'd see on old military muskets and rifles, which you'd use for stacking three guns standing together in a sort of tripod configuration, so they don't lay on dirty and wet ground?

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