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LGN-76

SNES Doom vs. GBA Doom II

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Doom was also on the SNES so it was also cartridge based, that and it didn't have the wussy green blood in place of red.

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@Glaice:
I meant the GBA was the only cartridge version of DOOM >>>TWO<<<. I'm well aware of DOOM I being on Jaguar and 32X cartridges, and the whole point of this thread is to determine if SNES DOOM I is overall better than GBA DOOM II...

@VGA:
He only played through DOOM >>>ONE<<< GBA, not DOOM >>>TWO<<< GBA.

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I think the reason these two are being compared is because neither of them use the real doom engine, and someone might want to know which of these ports has better controls and/or feels more like how doom actually controls...

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If that's the case, Doom 2 for GBA wins by a mile. Only drawback is green blood, but a worthy trade for it actually being playable. SNES was like a super impressive experiment but not fantastic as far as gameplay goes.

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In a fight to the death I'm sure the GameBoy Advance Doom 2 game would win. First of all it has that killer instinct and would actually draw blood rather than green ooze. Second of all it has a super shotgun to really murder Doom 1 SNES in the short term. In the even shorter run, Doom 2 has a chainsaw behind its back from the opening moments. No contchest Doom 2 even on the GBA wins all the time every time before the first 2 minutes.

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i haven't played either, but i'm guessing doom 2 for the gba would be better. for one, the gba was more powerful than the snes, and two, wolfenstein 3d on the gba was actually a pretty good port.

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Doom II GBA is the hands down worst port of any of the games I have so far played. It feels completely off and wrong, and is quite buggy to boot. SNES Doom over that any time for me.

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To me, the deficiencies of the GBA port were offset by the fact that I could carry the game in my pocket. SNES Doom on the other hand was competing with PC Doom at the time. So it's not exactly a fair fight.

I got all the way to The Chasm B before I got bored with the GBA version. I didn't even get past MAP02 in the SNES version.

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I actually played through the GBA version of Doom 2 back in the day when it was released and I have to say that GBA Doom 2 is way more bearable than SNES Doom. SNES Doom is so frustrating to play! GBA Doom 2 is definitely different than PC but still feels more solid.

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Vulture said:

SNES Doom is so frustrating to play!


Why? it's slow yes but sill playable it's good if you don't have a pc that can run it or a atari jaguar.

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It's the input lag and lack of circle strafing that destroy SNES Doom for me, especially knowing that with more efficient programming both could have been avoided. The movement in GBA Doom2 is far more responsive, though that's not saying much.

The enemy frames all having a duration of about 1 tic in SNES Doom also looks really weird.. Not only does GBA Doom2 have more accurate animation speeds, but it includes full sprite rotations! That's a one-two punch in favor of GBA D2.

Easily the worst thing about GBA D2 is the enemy hitboxes being smaller than the sprites which makes 0 sense, fucks up the gameplay pretty badly in some instances. As far as versions of Doom ported to the console, this is the absolute middle of the road IMO. Decent music, plays okay, but has some shitty bugs and could just generally be better all around as proven by the GBA version of Doom 1.

Quasar said:

Doom II GBA is the hands down worst port of any of the games I have so far played. It feels completely off and wrong, and is quite buggy to boot. SNES Doom over that any time for me.

Surely you're exaggerating Quasar, 3DO Doom may have a great soundtrack, but who could actually play that shit?

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geo said:

In a fight to the death I'm sure the GameBoy Advance Doom 2 game would win. First of all it has that killer instinct and would actually draw blood rather than green ooze. Second of all it has a super shotgun to really murder Doom 1 SNES in the short term. In the even shorter run, Doom 2 has a chainsaw behind its back from the opening moments. No contchest Doom 2 even on the GBA wins all the time every time before the first 2 minutes.

That's what you expected, but you didn't anticipate SNES Doom's unique secret weapon, unrivalled among cartridge console ports: superior MIDI music playback. As the title screen appears with a bass-driven, pounding DUNNN, GBA Doom II is left a devastated wreck of mispaletted color issues and fixed-space-font HUD messages. Trying to desperately fight back by deploying Doom II's additional monsters as backup, GBA Doom II realizes too late that the monsters are riddled with holes, leaving them useless. Not even easter eggs can save GBA Doom II now - its Wolfenstein levels having been stripped out for publication in Germany, while the SNES stands tall with its secret declaration of love. So much for GBA Doom 2's killer instinct - it turns out that was a SNES game.

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fraggle said:

That's what you expected, but you didn't anticipate SNES Doom's unique secret weapon, unrivalled among cartridge console ports: superior MIDI music playback. As the title screen appears with a bass-driven, pounding DUNNN, GBA Doom II is left a devastated wreck of mispaletted color issues and fixed-space-font HUD messages. Trying to desperately fight back by deploying Doom II's additional monsters as backup, GBA Doom II realizes too late that the monsters are riddled with holes, leaving them useless. Not even easter eggs can save GBA Doom II now - its Wolfenstein levels having been stripped out for publication in Germany, while the SNES stands tall with its secret declaration of love. So much for GBA Doom 2's killer instinct - it turns out that was a SNES game.


So Doom for SNES would try to charm GBA Doom 2 with good music and love statements hidden in textures? Bad music can kill faster :-) I still say SNES Doom would be dead by the end of the first map since GBA Doom 2 has a chainsaw and a rocket launcher pretty quick in its arsenal. To take advantage of the armor bug, SNES Doom would need to survive past the first level in a fight to the death rather than a points based death match of all levels.

Rip & Tear... rum rum rum rum rum goes the chainsaw. lol I need sleep so bad.

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MinerOfWorlds said:

As far as i know you couldn't circle strafe in pc doom until source ports came out.

Circle strafing has been in since shareware 0.99 and is present in most console ports (though if we want to get technical, it was also in the later alphas)

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Doomkid said:

Circle strafing has been in since shareware 0.99 and is present in most console ports (though if we want to get technical, it was also in the later alphas)


Do you need a mouse? i tried it with a keyboard and it didn't work.

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Super Nintendo Doom is definitely a marvel of engineering, and I can really respect it for that, but damn the gameplay is annoying without circlestrafing and the extremely low framerate. It's more playable in ZSNES, where the emulator speed is not at all accurate in favor of the game, rather than the opposite result 99% of the time. It was in fact the first port I played of Doom though, back in the mid-1990s, since playing the PC version was more or less off-limits.

GBA Doom II suffers from a lot of strange anomalies, but its playability is higher due to the framerate being overall better (though can tank REALLY badly sometimes). Had it been closer to how GBA Doom played (though without the weird problems with that port), I'd easily take it over SNES Doom. As it stands, I come back to them about the same amount, i.e. not at all really.

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MinerOfWorlds said:

Do you need a mouse? i tried it with a keyboard and it didn't work.

there are separate turn and strafe keys in vanilla for the keyboard. not that it matters much though since a lot of the better players even back in the day played with mouse.

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GBA Doom 2 runs better than the slogfest that it the SNES version.

What it needs is a romhack to restore the blood color and fix the transparency problems with the enemies. Maybe the sprites can be reconverted from the PC version properly.

Has that rom's file structure been reverse engineered?

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It shouldn't be too hard to fix the blood color. The transparency issues shouldn't be too hard to fix either, but you're going to lose two colors entirely (index 0 and 10). For 0, normally you could just shift to 247, but 247 is cyan in the GBA Doom 2 palette so the palette would have to be tweaked (probably the result of using a PC editor from the era to unpack the graphics), and 10 is lost entirely (10 functions as a special code in the image format, with different meanings depending on whether its at the start of a column or within one.

I have reverse engineered the picture format, fairly accurately I think (I'm not smart enough to attempt to actually reverse engineer the game, so I can't tell if I'm 100% correct), but I don't know enough about the game to comment on the feasibility of packing in new sprites with different sizes. This wouldn't be a problem for just recoloring the blood and the like, though. Should also be possible to squeeze in a few other fixes, like reoffseting archvile flames (the devs accidentally offset it as a projectile rather than a monster, so they're harder to see)

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How does the game load the gfx assets? Does it have a lookup table with static addresses, so everything gets screwed up when replacing an asset with a different sized one? Or is it looking for start/end markers?

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VGA said:

GBA Doom 2 runs better than the slogfest that it the SNES version.

What it needs is a romhack to restore the blood color and fix the transparency problems with the enemies. Maybe the sprites can be reconverted from the PC version properly.

Has that rom's file structure been reverse engineered?

No. I took a good long look at it but I couldn't figure anything out, and there are no existing tools to play with that game engine. I attempted to contact a guy who reverse engineered another game that uses its engine (Duke 3D, IIRC) but he never responded to me.

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The graphics directory is relatively sane, honestly, but that's the only thing I've ever figured out. I did look into sounds briefly since in his old console doom hacking thread Kasier briefly brought up that he found sound names in the ROM (in a naming scheme similar to ZDoom's base SNDINFO lumps), but I didn't spend much time looking into them, I don't particularly know much about sound encoding (but someone mentioned they were able to find them simply by loading the ROM as raw data in Audacity, so I suspect its just some raw PCM data). I can write up the format of the graphics directory and graphics format quickly, if you desire, but I don't know how helpful it would be for overall figuring out how GBA Doom II works

EDIT: For fun, my notes so far.. Still some holes in the format, but overall I can read any image in the game.

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