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The Doomist

Does DoomGuy die at the end of Knee-Deep in the Dead?

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I'm so confused.... the final level ends when you have 10 or less HP left, so would that mean DoomGuy "dies"? I've heard people says he then goes to Hell, but that's not possible, since you go to the other moon. Does DoomGuy survive?

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Personally, I have always seen that final room as being meant to represent you arriving on Deimos and being thrown straight into the fight. I think that ties in quite well with the end of episode text too.


Technically, you do not die. In fact, the final sector type is specifically written to prevent you going below 1% health.

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John Romero stated that the idea was for the player to die and go to hell. Though, if you think about, Enjay's explanation makes sense, too.

Scypek2 said:

Well, that's an interesting topic. I wonder why no one brought it before.

We had a thread some time ago.

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When I was working on a mediocre Doom -> Duke3D conversion, I tackled the lack of Type 11 sectors by sending the player straight to Deimos.
The player would turn up just behind the start area of E2M1. I lost the map long ago, but it looked roughly like this.

It wasn't the most exciting way of ending the level, but I imagine this is how the teleporter would've worked before the demonic invasion, as the player would not have to travel to Hell to get to Deimos.

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Something sinister definitely happens there. Remember what is being talked on the manual about the Phobos-Deimos gateway. Normal people becoming slightly insane or berserk on exit. Suddenly, their heads blow up.

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The explanation in the novel was that Doomguy (Flynn) got sucked through a portal to the other moon and apparently it only works with flesh, so he lost all his equipment (including clothing) as well. Silly book.

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In terms of the game engine, he clearly doesn't - and indeed cannot - die in that room.

In terms of the story, in so far as Doom has one, it's open to differing interpretations.

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Enjay said:

Technically, you do not die. In fact, the final sector type is specifically written to prevent you going below 1% health.

Well if the player had died then the transition might not work so that's probably why.

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I always assumed it was a plot device to explain why you start E2 without any weapons. Like you arrive through the teleporter and are immediately ambushed.

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When I was a kid I always thought it meant the doomguy died and went to hell. e2 was the start of the weirdness, so it was like the first layers of doomguy's hell. After that event you never really know if doomguy is still alive and hell has invaded his world, or if he's dead but doesn't know it and is slowly seeing his reality deteriorate because hell likes to screw with people.

Really though I think that event isn't really meant to be part of a story. The event is more like the ending to a horror movie. Horror movies always end with the supposedly defeated bad guy jumping out and dragging the main character away at the very last second. It's a device to tell the audience 'there is no way out; what you thought would save you was meaningless'. It instantly changes the mood from victorious to hopeless, and teaches the audience that hope is a dangerous thing.

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I took it as a marketing thing. E1 was released as shareware. If it ended when the barons died, you'd have some players feeling like they'd completed the game successfully, being satisfied with their experience, and not buying E2 and E3.

By having the "it's not over yet" coda, you psychologically set up the idea that there is more to the game, and that to "win", they have to buy the full version of the game.

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Marketing Teaser. Like the teasers on the so-called-NEWS, the actual story is rarely anything like the teaser they show to get you to not change channels.

Like any serial movie (weekly episodes), like all the Buck Rogers episodes, the hero always escapes next week.

When health reaches 10% the phone rings, distracting the remaining monsters long enough for DoomGuy to escape certain doom !!!
Or maybe a comet appears in the sky and all the monsters run away in fear, leaving DoomGuy to fight on another episode !!!
Or ...

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Dragonsbrethren said:

I always thought the same thing as Enjay, but I really like the dying and going to hell explanation better.


Same. So then DoomGuy truely became a zombie as per that bad fan fiction in that case. A badass Hellspawn killing zombie.

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I always thought it was implied that Doomguy died. I mean, in the pitch-black nukage of E1M8's final area; and surrounded, how is he supposed to survive? Doesn't one have to die to get to hell (which Deimos is suspended above)?

However, there is a little overlap here with the events of Doom 3, as the audio logs about the teleportation experiments all hint at visions of demons and hell; maybe the final part of E1M8 is naught but a teleportation hallucination/vision en route to Deimos?

This sentence added just so I have one in this post that doesn't end with a fucking question mark.

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I don't get where this dying to go to Hell thing comes from, considering the UAC just kind of accidentally opened a portal straight there. Thus, the, uh, entirety of the game.

Also I don't think they killed the entire planetoid of Deimos to make it disappear as described in the manual. I prefer the "interdimensional teleportation really sucks" explanation from the manual, so Doomguy just totally trips balls and comes out the other end. Maybe he dropped his guns/inevitable giant backpack into the space between dimensions.

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Enjay said:

Personally, I have always seen that final room as being meant to represent you arriving on Deimos and being thrown straight into the fight. I think that ties in quite well with the end of episode text too.

Pretty much this.

It was always unambiguous to me. Though alternative interpretations are always interesting.

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I fail to see how utter darkness with every type of monster at your throat counts as a fair, winnable fight (on Deimos arrival, as Enjay supposed). To me it looks surreal as heck.

Note that the "impossible to die" rule is something that won't be noticed by new players. It looks more like the health quickly plummeting to the inevitable, during which the screen fades to the end text (or next level).

Actually, the feeling I got when I went there for the first time was that of a false victory. I defeated the big badasses — hooray — but was quickly terminated, symbolically. It's all vague whether you die or not. Doom's universe is open to new interpretations. One can say that the destiny resurrected you in hell and gave you a chance, as a reward for beating the big badasses — a one-time divine intervention. And no, you're not left unconscious and wake up later in Deimos Anomaly. I think it's quite reasonable to assume that the demons make sure to kill their prey.

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I'm not even sure that I really see the "fight" in the ending sector happening at all. It could easily be just a teaser. You know: "you just went through a bunch of shit - but just wait, there's a whole heap more shit headed your way if you register". To me, it feels almost like a "next week on [insert TV show name here]" segment at the end of a episodic TV show where you get a teaser of some of the exciting bits coming up next week but you don't really know how the show turns out. When you buy The Shores of Hell, you play it through and your actions dictate how the battle on Deimos turns out but if you don't register, all you have to go on is that dark room and the text at the end telling you that "it stinks like rotten meat but looks like the lost Deimos base".

I know that doesn't specifically say whether you are alive or dead on your arrival on Deimos but I'm happy to go with the end room on Phobos actually being on Deimos and being a teaser for the registered version. Therefore, in my version of things, I am more or less as alive at the end of Episode 1 as I am at the start of Episode 2 (ie I am alive).

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The dark room isn't Deimos, Hell, or any hallucination.

It's just over the wall :D



Seriously though, I like the TV Teaser style idea :P

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That's an interesting interpretation, Enjay. It actually sounds the most plausible, non-lore wise.

It could also be that they had originally planned that ending for the shareware version alone, and for the registered version of Doom to continue without the player 'dying,' but thought it looked cool, even if the game continued afterwards, so they left it in the full game. Although this is less likely, as the game was likely completed by that point.

Pardon the run-on sentence.

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Well, Dacote was to be one of the space marines last names (there was going to be 4 different characters to choose from).

D.A.C.O.T.E (Dies at conclusion of the episode).

I think this is one of many of the Tom Hall things that didn't make the final cut but little bits of it still bled through.

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fraggle said:

I always assumed it was a plot device to explain why you start E2 without any weapons. Like you arrive through the teleporter and are immediately ambushed.


Yeah, but what about episode 2 -> episode 3?

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The Doomist said:

Yeah, but what about episode 2 -> episode 3?


He accidentaly drop his weapons and stuff... ups.

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The Doomist said:

Yeah, but what about episode 2 -> episode 3?


Gentlemanly politeness to the demons after kicking their asses so hard. Twice.

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NiuHaka said:

Well, Dacote was to be one of the space marines last names (there was going to be 4 different characters to choose from).

And Buddy Dacote was the non-playable fifth character of the team.

The playable characters were Ian Paul Freeley, Thi Barrett, Lorelei Chen, and Taradino Cassad. You might remember the names from Rise of the Triad.

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