Yeah I don't think the levels would run very well on 2004 hardware. We even cut a few corners to make it run properly as is. The fireballs of the imps no longer spawn shadow-casting lights for instance and we generally try to use few well-lit shadow-intense areas.

As for Doom3, I think the apparent lack of variety stems from a few things. First of all there obviously isn't a HUGE level of variety between the levels, but it's actually not grey on grey. The game spans from pristine well-kept recreational hallways through toxic waste "sewers" to underground caverns, dig sites and of course hell. I think a major reason for why it doesn't FEEL like it has a lot of variety is because there is very little to properly segment the experiences. For the majority of the game, nothing really happens. What I mean by this is that the game for the most part has a natural progression that changes from style to style in a seamless fashion. This is not a bad thing and makes total sense for the game, but it also means we don't notice the change as much - because it's constant and gradual. For us to remember its variety, we need to have a few key moments in the game where we remember encounters, changes in story or tempo. These key moments will make up a large part of our memory of the game and will reveal the variety when looking back.

Sure, we have a few encounters with Swann and Campbell, we meet Sarge who was in a bad mood and we have a short visit to hell, but it doesn't change anything. Most of the time events are there merely to move the goal posts rather than move the story along. There are a few areas which are spectacular enough to be be able to host events that would change the course or tempo of the game. Something like the rotating bridge area in one of the CPU levels would have been perfect for a change in tempo and it almost was. A little more time spent in that area, trying to get the bridge to work, puzzling how to move forward etc. would hammer this area and its surrounding visual theme into your mind. Hell was another great opporunity for this and again it was *almost* there. My problem with it was that it was a little too quick to get back to business and the sudden loss of weapons, change of scenery didn't really change the outcome of the story or the course of the player. A way to glue this moment to our memory would be to pair the sudden change of visuals to a change of course. If the player did NOT intend to go to hell or if it served as a "You can't go home again" moment (See Desmond in Season 2 Finale of Lost).

One thing they could have done to invoke more variety would have been to include more hell. I actually do believe this was the plan. I think they were shooting for a larger game (Even though the game was pretty damn big) than what was released, but reality must have hit them hard somewhere around 2002. Everything post E3 2002 seemed to point at them being in a crunch mode, trying to close up the project.

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Wait, they wanted the game to be LONGER?! It was already too long as it was.

In case of variety, I DID see the changes but only because I actively looked for them and what you described that nothing really changed is exactly what I felt. And yes, the game was mostly not gray. Alpha Labs for instance had tons of blue in it but the problem was that all of these sections of the game had homogenized color schemes. Alpha Labs was the "blue" section Recycling was the "green" section which is why I think people thought the game was samey: the pacing of the game was way off and was made worse by making it so long. There should have more variety within the levels themselves.

I think the introduction of Doom 3, meaning up until the end of Alpha Labs was truly exceptional and really evoked feelings of the moodier levels like Phobos Labs/Computer Station but the game did a poor job at making us SUBCONSCIOUSLY feel that the game was changing.

Anyway, it is obvious that slaving away at this mod for 9 years has given you a unique and unbiased view on Doom 3. Would you consider writing or recording a detailed analysis of it if you plan to make a documentary about the mod?

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I think to some extent the released version of Phobos will be our answer to what kind of flaws we believe Doom3 has. That said, we have at times considered making a lengthy post mortem on the mod once we're done. Perhaps that could include a Doom3 analysis. Some of the flaws that Romero mentions in the recent IGN video about predictability are shared by us.

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Would be cool if you released the article on Doom 3's 10th anniversary on the 3rd of August...maybe even as a final release date for the mod? That would be awesome.

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Well it better be one hell of a mod with all this long developing cycle, and I cant wait to see what it looks like when it's completely finished.

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Doominator2 said:

Well it better be one hell of a mod with all this long developing cycle, and I cant wait to see what it looks like when it's completely finished.


We like to think that it will be one hell of a mod.
Don't forget though that we are doing this part time on the side of having regular jobs/education. The team behind Doom3 consisted of 20-some people. We are 3. As of this writing we have all the levels in working playable states with a level of quality that's pretty good overall. What we're doing now is bring that quality up to the absolute top of SP mod/indie projects. Or so we'd like to think :)

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Shaviro said:

We like to think that it will be one hell of a mod.
Don't forget though that we are doing this part time on the side of having regular jobs/education. The team behind Doom3 consisted of 20-some people. We are 3. As of this writing we have all the levels in working playable states with a level of quality that's pretty good overall. What we're doing now is bring that quality up to the absolute top of SP mod/indie projects. Or so we'd like to think :)

Ya I understand I'm just excited that there is going to be an "unofficial" expansion for Doom 3 & with that I wish good luck to you guys through this "rather" long developing cycle. ;)

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Shaviro said:

We like to think that it will be one hell of a mod.
Don't forget though that we are doing this part time on the side of having regular jobs/education. The team behind Doom3 consisted of 20-some people. We are 3. As of this writing we have all the levels in working playable states with a level of quality that's pretty good overall. What we're doing now is bring that quality up to the absolute top of SP mod/indie projects. Or so we'd like to think :)


Oh stop being so modest! :D

Anyway, what is 2014 going to mean for Phobos?

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Yeah, think it's reasonable to expect a release or is it still ways off?

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That is a little bit more up in the air than I want it to be. We're currently not progressing at the desired pace. Hopefully it will pick up in the coming months and I'll be able to provide a better answer.

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Will the so-called "Birdman" be implemented in Doom 3: Phobos? That thing looks downright evil.

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Piper Maru said:

I hope it doesn't end up like Duke Nukem Forver.


But more importantly I hope Doom 4 dose not become Duke Nukem Forever.

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Piper Maru said:

Will the so-called "Birdman" be implemented in Doom 3: Phobos? That thing looks downright evil.


Sadly, he was the subject of debate on the team and never made it in while we had the resources to do it.

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Are you redesigning the existing monsters? What you said about Doom 3 art style in the other thread was alarming.

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They will more or less be the same.
We will make a few updates here or there either to the behavior or the tone of the skin. Nothing groundbreaking though.

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Shaviro said:

Sadly, he was the subject of debate on the team and never made it in while we had the resources to do it.


Ah shucks! Oh well, maybe they'll utilize him in Doom 4. Sorry for asking so many questions, but will there be any new weapons in Doom 3: Phobos?

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We have been doing a little work on most of the weapons. The shotgun has been replaced, but most everything else is behavior/sound tweeks.

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Will there be detailed introductions for the levels in Phobos like there was in Doom 3?

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I thought I'd mention that about a year and a half back,I compiled a portfolio.It includes quite a few shots of the maps I worked on for the mod way back when I were on the team. They'll not gonna be featured in the mod anymore. But in case anyone is interested,they're available over at. doglike.org

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kristus said:

I thought I'd mention that about a year and a half back,I compiled a portfolio.It includes quite a few shots of the maps I worked on for the mod way back when I were on the team. They'll not gonna be featured in the mod anymore. But in case anyone is interested,they're available over at. doglike.org


Holy shit man, even if the likelihood of the third episode is low, you should still finish this as a standalone campaign, unrelated to Phobos. This is too good to just go to waste.

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We have a few different half-done creatures that will not see the light of day in Episode 1. First of all we don't have the resources to complete them and second they would probably flood the one-episode structure.

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Shaviro said:

We have a few different half-done creatures that will not see the light of day in Episode 1. First of all we don't have the resources to complete them and second they would probably flood the one-episode structure.


What still needs to be done? If it's animation, here is a cheap but high-quality mocap software. It requires a Kinect or preferably 4 PSEyes. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ndPcqkTyKPY

I would LOVE to see that remade classic Baron. While I like the Doom 3 version, I think the one made by Kristus is cooler. It looks like an evolved imp.

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Textures, effects, sounds, the actual implementation, rigging, animation. For some we probably even lack the model files.

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Oh, I see, well tough luck then.

Anyway, I really like the look of those Hell maps. They look like modern classic Doom. Id did the same with the Lost Mission hell levels, such a shame there weren't more.

With some extra polish those maps could be a great stand-alone, if you and the Phobos team agree.

Doom 3 NEEDS more Hell in it. I was thinking they could work as maps that extend the Hell section of the original Doom 3. I hope you will finish these one day regardless.

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Other than the main menu screen theme(which has been replaced) there likely won't be a lot in the way of traditional music in Phobos. As it is right now, we're employing the use of ambient sounds to create 'soundscapes' in the levels, same as was done in Doom 3. The problem with traditional music in a game like Doom 3 is that it has to loop continuously throughout the level, and this doesn't work well when the mood has to change as the player progresses. You COULD have different music pieces stop and play as the player moves around the level, but the problem with that is the player needs to be able to move around back and forth in the level as he chooses, and that tends to make switching between musical tracks awkward. We're thinking of having some musical pieces at certain key moments, but for the most part the game will use ambient sounds. It's just easier to make them blend seamlessly together than it is with traditional music.

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