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How to play DOOM Multiplayer - Tutorial & Info!

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How to play DOOM online (Co-operative, Deathmatch, CTF and much more)

To get started, you'll need a source port. The three most commonly played online are Zandronum, Zdaemon and Odamex. To get the widest selection of Doomability, I suggest downloading all three (they're all quite small.) Place all of your IWADs (doom.wad, doom2.wad, freedoom.wad etc) in each program's directory. Configuring controls and setting player name/color is simple in all three.

Now you'll need a program to browse servers. Doom Explorer (the successor to IDE) is a commonly used program, compatible with all 3 mutliplayer ports. Doomseeker is another stable and easy to use server browser which will run on Linux.


Here are the commonly used Classic Doom Discord channels.

Finding players to challenge is very easy, and the online community is usually friendly and quite welcoming.

If you intend on hosting a public server, you will need to forward ports! Here, you can find a helpful article on port forwarding. Many servers use ports 10666 and 10667. IDE and Doomseeker both serve as easy ways to launch your custom server for the world to see.


- Setting up your DOOM Browser -


Step 1: Set your program directories. Open IDE and Click the "options" tab at the top. On the left hand column, you should see Directories, and underneath Programs and Wads. Click 'programs', and you'll see this:


Click '...' to find your client and server for each source port.

Step 2: Set your preferences. To do this, click the 'Launch Game Parameters' option at the left.


Here, you can enter your online username and set your player color by clicking the marine icon.

You can set these to be different for each port, and Zandronum features colored text in your name, if you wish. I recommend enabling WAD check and Zandronum autotesting. You can also choose to record demos (.lmp files) of your online matches.

Step 3: Set your wad directories. On the left hand side, click 'Directories, then click 'Wads'.


Click the 'Add' button. Here, I recommend adding each source port's directory, as well as your main PWADs folder, if you have one.

Step 4: Configure GetWAD. One of the best things about playing Doom online is experiencing all of the awesome user made content. GetWAD easily grabs the file you're looking for from the web and lets you connect with ease.


On the left had column, under 'Optional Components', click 'GetWad'. Here you configure where new wadfiles will be downloaded to. You must select one of the directories you chose on step 3, so IDE knows where to look when launching your game with custom WADs. Most servers use custom wads, so this is an important aspect of setting up your browser.

Step 5: Configure your server list. This will control how servers appear to you and make it easier to find the exact game you're looking for. Click 'Appearance & Functionality' on the left.


I generally check 'Additional sort by players number' because it's no fun to play alone and 'Don't sort servers with only bots' because bots are usually annoying/intrusive. I also check 'Refresh the server before launching the game' to see if the server has emptied out or filled up as you connect.

Step 6: Set up your ZDaemon account. ZDaemon has the unique feature of keeping score for many Deathmatch and Duel servers.

Setting an account up is very simple. Click the 'ZD Scoreboard' tab at the top of your IDE client.


Here, you can set your name, password and personal blurb and create an account on the spot. Make sure your ZDaemon player name matches the name you selected in the 'Launch Game Parameters' on step 2.

Come on, let's play already! Click the 'Servers' tab at the top. Click 'Players' to sort by number of players, 'Ping' to sort by connection quality, and so on - sorting servers is a breeze. Make sure you have all 3 ports enabled.


Double click the server, allow GetWAD to download the custom files (if necessary) and frag away!

Edited by Doomkid

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DOSbox is a program capable of running the real DOOM.exe and DOOM2.exe via DOS emulation.

This tutorial assumes you have dosbox installed, your Doom/Doom2 files are located in C:\DOOM (or C:\DOOM2), and if behind a router, you have opened ports.

To allow connectivity, you have to go into your DOSbox folder and find a file called "dosbox.conf" or "Dosbox 0.74 Options.bat". Open this and it should bring you to notepad/a text editor. Scroll near the bottom, and you should see "ipx=false". Change this to "ipx=true".

On the hosting PC, type "ipxnet startserver port", port being the UDP port you want to host with.

On the connecting PC, type "ipxnet connect ip port", putting the host computer's IP address in place of 'ip', and using the opened port specified on the host's PC. This works over the internet as well as on a local network, so if someone has put up an internet server (as fraggle sometimes does), type the IP and port which they have specified. Note: The IP and port must have a space between them, not a : used by most modern source ports.

It is possible to load custom files, and play DM through the -deathmatch parameter. More info coming soon! (I'm still pretty new to this myself!)

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Chocolate Doom is an excellent port by fraggle that emulates playing DOOM.exe, without the need for DOSbox eating up your CPU. Choco Doom sends data through a server rather than the peer-to-peer system used by Vanilla Doom and features improved client synchronization code, giving you a smoother game than you'll get through Vanilla Doom. (It's also generally easier to set up than a DOSbox match.)

One player must act as the server and host the game. To run a Chocolate Doom server over the internet, you need to know your public IP address. (Some broadband routers use NAT, so the IP address you see in your OS may not be the same as your public IP address.) The website whatismyipaddress.com will allow you to find out your public address.

When you run a Chocolate Doom server, it is automatically registered with the master server. Other players can use the setup tool to find your server, or you can check for the address on the website for the master server. If the server doesn't appear on the list, it's probably because you haven't set up the port forward for your NAT router properly.

Start a multiplayer server by running with the -server command line option. For example, to start a server for a deathmatch game, type "chocolate-doom -server -deathmatch".

Other players can then connect to your server using the -connect command line option. For example, if the server's public IP address is, type "chocolate-doom -connect".

When the server is started, you will see the waiting screen which lists all players currently connected. Once all players are present, click the "start game" button (or press space bar) to start the game!

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--- FOR SPLITSCREEN PLAYERS (Doom Legacy 1.42) ---

Just want to frag 1v1 with a friend? Doom Legacy has optional splitscreen to curb those deathmatch pangs. I use version 1.42, for stability and it's excellent launcher, alongside the program XPadder, so we can use Xbox 360 and Playstation controllers to blow eachother up.

Instructions on setting up XPadder can be found on the website.

Once you have Doom Legacy set up, open the Launcher.

Click "Game Mode". Here, you will tell the launcher where your Doom Legacy program is, as well as your IWADS. It is reccomended to have your IWADS and PWADS all in your Legacy folder.

Now, click "Single Map", do not click "Multiplayer".

Here, you tell the Launcher how you want to play. In the "Additional options" field, type +splitscreen 1 and, if you want to Deathmatch, +deathmatch 3, as shown in the image above. You do not need to type a command to play cooperative games.

In the "Additional files" field, you can add different user made wads you wish to play. The wads should be in your Legacy folder.

Set each players controls (Press ESC, then select 'Multiplayer' to configure Player 2) and get killing!

*It is possible to network 2 PC's and get a 4-man game happening!*

Boot up Doom Legacy through the launcher with the WADs you wish to use. When the game starts, hit ESC, select 'Multiplayer' and select 'End Game'. It should bring you to the title screen. Press ESC, select 'Multiplayer', and select 'Start Server'. Here, you can set all of the game options - Turning monsters on and off, setting it as Deathmatch (1, 2 and 3 all have different weapon/item rules) or Cooperative, and setting the server name.

On the PC that will be connecting, start the game through the Launcher with the same WADs as the host. On startup, press ESC and select 'End Game'. Now press ESC, select 'Multiplayer', and 'Connect Server'. You should see the server name, select it and hit Enter. You should both be in the same server now!

To make the game 4 player, simply open the console on each PC by pressing ~ (located under ESC on most keyboards) and type "splitscreen 1". To set up player 2's controls, press ESC, select 'Multiplayer' then select 'Setup Player Two'.

Once you're finished, you're ready to frag!

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Further info about the latest Legacy versions:

wesleyjohnson said:

Thank you too.
There are some points of difference you may want to hit.

There is a built-in Launcher. The command line is mostly the same as previously used by older versions such so external Launchers should still work. There are some new command line switches like -game, -native, and -bpp, that an external launcher may be able to invoke.
These cannot be set in the menus.

The -v2 switch (extra verbose) may be helpful to external Launcher users.

The built-in launcher in DoomLegacy is rather minimalist. It is really for those users who want to start DoomLegacy with a single click, or do not even have a command line. It is not a replacement for a fancy Doom Launcher. It must run before the graphics support is fully setup or started, so it has minimal graphics to work with.

If DoomLegacy can start at all, the built-in Launcher should run. It uses minimal graphics. It directly sets the command line buffer, giving the same capability as a command line.

Starting a game from the command line or Launcher invokes game attributes differently than from the menus. The command line game attributes only apply to the one game started by the command line.
This also applies to any Launcher using the command line.
The built-in Launcher keeps this characteristic.

There are a few command line switches the built-in Launcher cannot handle, like the -mb switch. This is because those switches must be
handled early. They are also not important unless the user is going to compile with some non-default memory or video card config settings.

If you have an illegal setting using an external Launcher, the user is going to end up in the built-in Launcher (error handler). There they can give command line settings to fix it, or they can Quit and retry their external Launcher.

The command line settings used by the external Launcher are not shown in the built-in launcher, the user must enter them fresh. The built-in Launcher does remember settings made in the built-in Launcher.
This is because there is no routine to parse and interpret the combine command line into the categories used by the built-in Launcher.

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OP has been updated and will continue to be revised if necessary, please ask if you have any questions!

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this is a one liner to add the drdteam repository for debian and debian-based distros and install doomseeker + odamex + zandronum.

su -c "echo 'deb http://debian.drdteam.org/ stable multiverse' >> /etc/apt/sources.list && wget -O - http://debian.drdteam.org/drdteam.gpg | apt-key add - && apt-get update && apt-get install doomseeker doomseeker-odamex odamex zandronum"

copy the wad files inside .doomseeker (it is hidden in your home directory). if doomseeker ask for odamex's path, it is /usr/games/odamex

for debian jessie users: if you want to install zdoom, you will need to install libjpeg8 from the testing repository. i dont know how to write a script to check which archtecture you use at the moment, so you will have to install it manually with

dpkg -i <package name>

these are the pages where you can download the package

AMD64 - https://packages.debian.org/testing/amd64/libjpeg8/download
i386 - https://packages.debian.org/testing/i386/libjpeg8/download

direct links to the package

AMD64 - http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/pool/main/libj/libjpeg8/libjpeg8_8d1-2_amd64.deb
i386 - http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/pool/main/libj/libjpeg8/libjpeg8_8d1-2_i386.deb

and do this, so you dont have to copy the wad files to .config/zdoom

echo '[IWADSearch.Directories]' > $home/.config/zdoom/zdoom.ini
echo 'path=~/.doomseeker/' >> $home/.config/zdoom/zdoom.ini

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To all event hosts, I am updating the time of submission for news posts due to new work circumstances - as is, I can't post until Friday morning, which is obviously problematic for Zdaemon TNS. This will help to rectify that!

Please post all event news by Thursday 9:00 AM UTC from now on. I have updated the Multiplayer FAQ with this info as well.


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Hi folks, from this week, at Doomkid's request, I'll be doing the MP digest posts (you may have noticed they were missing the last few weeks).

To do this I need to slightly bring back the deadline on event posts, please make sure your event thread is posted by Thursday 7am UTC, as I'll be posting the digest shortly after that time. Thanks.

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Really sorry for bump this thread, but I was wondering about how to start a multiplayer game on prboom-plus server... Is maybe similar to chocodoom server?

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Unfortunately, PrBoom's multiplayer (arguably) remains it's most underdeveloped feature. Reports from various Doomers cite terrible lag/hiccups even with low ping. I recommend stepping down a notch to Choco or up a notch to Odamex for net play, depending on what wad you're playing.


If you want to try PrBoom regardless of lag issues, I believe it is a very similar process to Choco Doom (I've never tried it myself, though)

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Thank you a lot! Doom MP always looked interesting for me but I never truly understood how to make it possible :P 

Sadly, I think because of my country in C.A I will have really bad ping... 

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I've never had anyone ping over 280 to Doomshack which should be pretty playable for Cooperative, survival and deathmatch. Duel will be tough though :) There are servers all around the world, you might find some with a low ping!

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Doom Legacy! What happened to that? It seemed to suddenly die. You will never know how many hours we put into playing split-screen Doom: Memento Mori, Requiem, Alien Vendetta, we beat them all. How come this feature wasn't implemented into ZDoom?

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5 hours ago, MajorRawne said:

Doom Legacy! What happened to that? It seemed to suddenly die. You will never know how many hours we put into playing split-screen Doom: Memento Mori, Requiem, Alien Vendetta, we beat them all. How come this feature wasn't implemented into ZDoom?

I think in the end it boiled down to "it's too hard". A total shame because I've spent far too many hours enjoying Doom in splitscreen with various friends and even my ex wife over the years. Super ultra easy way to enjoy some co-op or DM without needing a gigantic pile of computers sitting around!

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I am having an issue in setting up a server for my buddies and I; the problem is in Doomseeker, my buddies cant find my created server on the list (but it is visible to me), and in Doom Explorer, its not visible to any of us, myself included. The servers run fine (ostensibly), but they are not on the list. Any suggestions?


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It sounds like you may need to forward whatever port your server is on (default is 10666)

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Hey again,

I think I forwarded my ports correctly (10666 - 10700), but alas, still no luck. Any other thoughts? 


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I will submit a screenshot of my ports in a little bit, as well as a shot of my server configuration


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Are you trying to host on Zandronum by chance? If so, you may find it easier to use The Sentinel's Playground to host your multiplayer Doom stuff. Please do send a screenshot though, with ports forwarded this should work, but sometimes a tiny little hidden issue is all that's stopping it.

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I am trying Zandronum, and I will check out the Sentinel's Playground. Thanks for the suggestion!

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Doomseeker works well, especially for Linux users. It only supports Zand and Odamex, but Zdaemon is (or may as well be) a Windows port so it's not much of an issue. I recommend Doom Explorer for windows users and DS for Linux users overall. Both function really well in general.

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20 hours ago, Doomkid said:

Doomseeker works well, especially for Linux users. It only supports Zand and Odamex, but Zdaemon is (or may as well be) a Windows port so it's not much of an issue. I recommend Doom Explorer for windows users and DS for Linux users overall. Both function really well in general.

Interesting, I had no idea Doomseeker was a linux preferred program, I've been using it on Win7 no dramas. I'll definitely have to get Doom Explorer up and running, I might have more luck playing with Australians there. Thanks!

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