Team Future Chief
I think first off, the biggest appeal for Doom4 is in its name. While it's no longer too relevant, the name Doom will draw attention. Other than that, I don't think there's too much they can draw from the classics.
As for how Doom4 should appeal to people, I will pretend to be in charge of the production of the game. To begin with I will describe how the game should appeal to Doom fans, big or small.
I would try to create a style that would cater to realistic locations while still being "open" enough to be able to contain the classic monsters. The closer they could resemble their old counterparts, the better. This is of course no triviel matter, but it's important that you as a player can make this connection. Basically Doom4 should be to Doom2 what Starcraft2 is to Starcraft - in the style department.
The second thing I would focus on is sound design. Visuals are one thing, just as important is the audio side of things. As players we have a wide array of sounds (and music) which are attributed to Doom. I would try to base the new Doom4 sounds on the old. Not that they should necessarily be 1-1 cutouts from the archive, but again the closer they resemble the better. Look to what Half-Life2 is to Half-Life1 in the sound department for a good example on this. As for whatever music present in the game, I would look for a style in the two original soundtracks that would be most fitting. The pseudo-heavy metal is probably too much of a reach, but both Doom1 and Doom2 have tracks that could be analyzed and act as a base for the new musical style. Message for the Arch-Vile could "easily" be turned into something very appropriate for a new game.
And that is more or less it for what I'd bring back from Doom aside from various references conscious or not. Trying to emulate the 70mph running game style etc. would be foolish. Ignoring the need for an in-depth story presentation would be just as foolish. For something like Doom4 to work in 2016(?), you can't lift the play style and make it work in a realistic looking environment. If you want to have the old playstyle, you would probably have to go a completely different route. One that is much more akin to casual gaming (Less immersion, less story, less experience), abandoning some of the core qualities that made Doom a revolution and also a route that isn't fit for a AAA developer like Id Software.
So what would the basic appeal (and qualities to focus on) be? I would go all in on the experience side of things. What I basically mean by this is that I would try to create as gripping a depiction of Hell invading Earth as I possibly could. This means I would base the progression of the game on a story presentation that provides the player with an outlook, a viewpoint from a personal side. While a completely different game, The Last of Us does this very well. One of the most important things in a story driven game like this is that there is an emotional connection to what is taking place on the screen. Having to battle for survival against an overwhelming hellish invasion would have tenfold of an impact if you actually care about the world and its characters. For this we need to see how things are pre-invasion. Let us experience how the world is, how characters interact with eachother, what their dreams and passions are before they are taken away from us.
Examples of what I would avoid completely are:
1) Being late to the party. We do this in Rage. We never get to see how the world is, we have no relations or emotional connections to anything and thus the story presentation suffers. The most important event in the game happens in a cutscene and has no direct consequences for the playing of the game. You could have made an entire game pre-catastrophe ending with the player and a select few others finding an ark and strapping themselves in. This would have set up an amazing second game. (The same thing could have been done as a first act as well).
2) Being affiliated with the military
Sure, this makes the most sense as to why the player can fend off monsters counted in the hundreds, but usualy this also means the player is a mindless drone taking orders like an errand boy and more often than not there are no personal relations to other characters aside from "army buddy" or "sarge". I would have the main character be (more or less) random joe. Someone you could relate to. He would be going about his every day life, maybe a little down on his luck, when hell breaks loose.
3) Having "The Resistance"
It's not so much that this can't be a good thing or that it makes sense. It's just so overplayed. Anyone who got a good look at the leaked Doom4 screenshots will know (or highly expect) that there was a resistance complete with safe house and christmas lights. And it all looked like a copy what we saw in Rage. Whenever you get affiliated with "the resitance" in a game you basically know what's going to happen. You'll somehow be (or become) super important and do all the work while these assholes talk with stupid accents and do nothing. It will end with that huge mission that only you can do, saving the day and the world. The end. I think the basic mechanic of having a group of people you fight for is fine, but I would probably scale back the amibition level to a much more personal level. Things having to do directly with the player or the people close to him. An ultimate goal could be escaping the Earth. Getting to that space port. I would want to make things look hopeless. Whenever you have a small resistance of 10 guys kicking the ass of hell (or the authority) by only sending the player, you lose that sense of overwhelming opposition and the urgency of survival. It becomes a cartoon or action movie from the 80s.
So to sum up the way too long post, the appeal of Doom4 (to non doomers) could be something as abstract and ill defined as "the experience" of being one man trying to survive in a world that is ending. This is basically what the core Doom has been all along.
Last edited by Shaviro on Dec 8 2013 at 13:34