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Which Doom has the best story?

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Sure there's no story in most games, but what's the best Doom game back story / story?

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iwad: doom 1, since the levels actually follow some sort of progression and have a little bit of continuity
you're actually in a place when you play those levels, which gives them more meaning and a greater sense of accomplishment when you beat them

 

pwad: perdition's gate/hell to pay, since they're like doom 1 on steroids when it comes to progression and continuity, and have story blurbs that help further tie each level together on every single intermission screen

 

i really really like when levels in a wad are tied to its story in some way, which is very much so the case with perdition's gate and hell to pay

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It was dumb but it was still A LOT better than "Hell invades, kill demons, rawwr..."

 

Doom 2016 expands on the concepts of Doom 3's story.

All the stories of past civilations and a the UAC making a literal deal with the devil makes it a lot less basic than the original Doom story 

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It's a toss-up between Doom (1) and Doom 2016.

 

Doom (1): Unstable teleporters breaking down and creating a portal to Hell was a pretty badass concept back in 1993 and the in-game locations followed a theme that seemed rather consistent with the story setting and universe, while the end-episode text blurbs developed the storyline enough to feel rewarding.

Best of all, it's not a very long or complicated plot and you can still completely ignore it and skip all the text blurps at your leisure.

 

Of course, nowadays, that plot has been re-used to death which makes it less interesting to newcomers who have seen one or multiple other permutations of that plot. Also it's very thin on world lore, which is both good and bad.

 

Doom 2016: Re-invention of the Doom plot, which is a nice, unexpected surprise, but it also stays true to the core themes of the original plot (overtones of greed and arrogance tampering with stuff best left alone). Has a lot of universe lore that makes it cooler than any previous Doom story, but it maintains a fairly simple plot that makes decent sense within its universe:

Spoiler

The UAC discovers Hell energy on Mars and decides to exploit it because Humanity is facing an insurmountable energy crisis - they need to create a connection to Hell (origin of Hell energy) to exploit it. Hell energy corrupts everything it touches and eventually facilitates a Demonic Invasion.

You, a seemingly unstoppable and immortal ancient nemesis of Hell, who has been entombed in Hell, awakens to battle demons once again.

It also manages to give the protagonist a memorable personality that stays remarkably true to the original protagonists very basic characteristics and it has far better written Human villains (than previous Doom stories that featured those) with motivations that are a little easier to understand and imply something deeper than just "Muah hah hah hah haah, evil!!".

The downside to the Doom 2016 plot is that while it's pretty light for a modern game, it still interrupts the action and forces you to watch cutscenes and listen to exposition, not all of which is that interesting, so while it's a tolerable issue (you could always use the delay to take a quick bathroom break), it's still a hit against it definitively taking the no.1 slot in terms of "best plot" for a Doom game.

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Doom 2016 because it features a proper story and expanded lore. I'm totally looking forward to the story of the next Doom.

Edited by Agent6

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DooM 3 easily. The amount of detail in the story is ridiculously good. You got PDAs with emails, video disks, audio logs telling you the background about what is going on, the unethical procedures of UAC. I mean, the first scientist you meet is already a sign something is not right & people want to transfer off Mars. As you play more, you hear more screwed up stuff about researching that takes on that base.

 

Best part is the archaeological one. Site 1, 2 & 3 and what was found there. 

 

Shame lot of people overlooked that & complained not being like Doom from 93.

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34 minutes ago, The_SloVinator said:

DooM 3 easily. The amount of detail in the story is ridiculously good. You got PDAs with emails, video disks, audio logs telling you the background about what is going on, the unethical procedures of UAC. I mean, the first scientist you meet is already a sign something is not right & people want to transfer off Mars. As you play more, you hear more screwed up stuff about researching that takes on that base.

 

Best part is the archaeological one. Site 1, 2 & 3 and what was found there. 

 

Shame lot of people overlooked that & complained not being like Doom from 93.

I agree. Far too many people were turned off by the dramatic change in style and tone which really didn't to it any justice, but the world of Doom 3 is very rich with lots of details that really add something to the experience.

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It'd probably be just the intro bit of TNT's story

 

the part with the giant demon ship has been my favorite out of them all for years and years

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Doom 64. In only a few sentences they managed to convey something that was completely ignored before that: you're playing as a broken wreck who endured far too much to be able to do anything else ever again. Boiling rage, you say? I haven't played Doom 2016, but it seems that the theme didn't originate there.

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I find it funny that Doom 2016 was hyped as the one that tries to say that the Doom guy doesn't care about the story just to please the oldschoolers, but then it kinda presents something at some points that feels very cheesy and unimportant to me (and it will stop the action at the beginning or end of a level and take down your gun at few points). It seemed to me as an afterthought as most AAA that present themselves as cinematic experiences where the story matters, but it usually doesn't work for me. I wouldn't care if it wasn't there. Many people seem to like it here though.

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1 hour ago, Optimus said:

I find it funny that Doom 2016 was hyped as the one that tries to say that the Doom guy doesn't care about the story just to please the oldschoolers

It's also kinda funny seeing history repeating itself. Both the original Doom 4 (at the time) and the classic Doom were supposed to be heavily story driven, which didn't happen in either case for different reasons. Also in the case of Doom 2016 they admitted the story was something they've actually always focused on, but in most pre-release footage, interviews and so on they explictly stated they insisted on the gameplay (can't say I don't see why they did this, and they actually worked on it more, but the first was never admitted before the release, only that "Well, the story was not the focus, it's the gameplay, but for who is looking for it, it's there.")

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DOOM 2. IIRC you actually race to help humanity evacuate, and only after you've done that do you go to Hell to deal with the root of the problem.

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^ Too bad it was never explained how humanity is supposed to escape. Huge TNT-Evilution-like space cruisers to hold city populations? Maybe it makes sense if we assume it takes place in the 22nd century in a high-tech world like Doom 3, even though the Doom 2 Earth-like levels look exceedingly drab and postapocalyptic? Doom 2 looks way less plausible than Doom 1, most probably because of the engine and time constraints.

 

On 28.12.2017 at 1:44 PM, The_SloVinator said:

DooM 3 easily. The amount of detail in the story is ridiculously good. You got PDAs with emails, video disks, audio logs telling you the background about what is going on, the unethical procedures of UAC. I mean, the first scientist you meet is already a sign something is not right & people want to transfer off Mars. As you play more, you hear more screwed up stuff about researching that takes on that base.

Well, my impression from the Doom 3 PDA logs is of UAC employees having problems with equipment malfunctions or misbehaving coworkers (usually subordinates). A few of them were about serious work accidents. But do they add up to form a bigger picture of UAC? Do they have any hidden messages? Because otherwise, they just tell me what I already suspect of such a place as UAC stationed on Mars: the place is not (and can't easily be) comfortable, so shit happens.

 

I don't feel that the Doom 3 story is that great, but it's not bad either. I like doctor Betruger a bit. He acts over-the-top, which may seem dumb, but is still pretty fitting considering the kind of demons you're fighting. But all being said, his slip into hellhood is still a big loss. Humanity would have perfected teleportation and dimensional travel, but it was tragically destroyed for attempting it (this is also the message I see in Doom 1).

 

You can consider Doom to be a highly religious game. Humanity tries to do something which is way past its league => humanity is decimated and sent back to stone age by the unleashing of sinister demons by a higher power.

 

To actually answer the question: my favourite Doom story is of course the first one, because I grew up with it and was able to form quite some strong mental images of what's going on. Not only that, but I wanted to imagine Doom having just as much story as Wolfenstein 3D, just sci-fi instead of historical.

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@printz It's "Hell on Earth" after all, so at least some of the levels which take place on Earth should look postapocalyptic, as demons overrun the planet. I don't recall the action being set quite as far in the future like in Doom 3 so maybe this is why Earth doesn't look as high tech there, or for other reasons if not. There are indeed plot holes in Doom 2, particularly the one you pointed out, the intermission screen just mentions that humanity is now free and leaves it at that, never explaining how. I feel this happened due to their deliberate shift from story-driven as they considered it more hindered the games than help them. Had they focused more on the story there wouldn't be plot holes like that.

Edited by Agent6

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HR perfected the "Doom story":

Quote

You wake up with a pistol in your hand, 50 bullets and suddenly you appear to have visible health and armor. Apparently you were sent into an invaded lab experimenting in jumpgates by two mad WAD creators. Your mission is to go through the jumpgate and find out what your mission is, and, in addition, to finish all levels and send a letter of complaint to the madmen who sent you here.

 

To read the rest of the incredible Hell Revealed story, send $500 to us, or, alternatively, enter a nuthouse.

 

This is Doom, man - just go in there and kill!

"Story in a game is like story in a porn movie. It's expected to be there, but it's not that important." - John Carmack

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Doom 3 admittedly has the best cinematic experience and gets me the most interested in paying close attention to cutscenes, but the PDAs were so booooooring for my borderline ADHD attention span. I'm glad they were there though, they appeal to a different type of Doomer and not every damn campaign should be suited to just one particular taste.

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Doom 2016 wins with story hands down, although they made some poor decisions to change up the bestiary. 

 

Revenants are supposed to be slain Arch-viles repurposed by the Techno Hell faction, not experimental humanoids.

 

Small changes like that really get under my skin, but it was a great game. I can overlook small things like that.

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