A Bright Idea For Doom 3 That Comes A Little Too Late

John Carmack's thoughts today on Doom 3. The programmer says id Software was legitimately "dinged" for making the 2004 game too dark, wishing he'd added more lighting options to the tech, adding "the artists hiss at us if we turn on lights."


    Sure, the artists, who have slaved away and poured love into the characters, levels, props and textures would hiss at the guy in charge whenever he wanted to make a change.

    I call BS.

    Yep it was stupidly dark imo. I played throughit on god mode, with the flash light mod on because I just wasn't having fun walking aorund in the dark, getting pounced on out of monster boxes.

    I couldn't get past the fact that the protaganist didn't think to duct tape a freakin torch to his gun - as far as I remember you had to switch to your torch which is why I gave up soon after playing it...

      It's not realistic because he's only got one torch and would have to re tape it when he switches to one of the ten guns he has on his back.

        He could have taped it to his head instead - added bonus being if a certain dimensional rift crossed over into another certain dimensional rift that any headcrabs would get a bad case of indigestion.. also you could use it to trick barnacles :p

        Barnacle: ooh deliciously meaty space marine! blalala-omnomnomnom.. bleh.. tastes like glue and batteries >.<
        Space Marine: walk~walk~walk.. I see you hiding there mister demon.. ow!ow!ow! my hair!
        *looks up*
        Pulse Rifle: Blam!Blam!Blam!Blam!Blam!
        Barnacle: Eep! *squish*
        Pulse Rifle: Blam!Blam!click.click.click.
        Space Marine: Hah!..oh.. O.o
        Mister Demon: Raar!omnomnomnomnom...

        Forgive my cynicism, but did you just pull the 'realism' card in reference to a video game about shooting demons on Mars? Really?

        And if you want to try going down that route, many guns nowadays haave the capacity for underslung flashlights, so why not those guns in the future?

    I loved the lighting scheme in Doom 3, it fits the style and genre of the game very well.

    Well, it worked very well as a horror game (try playing it in the dark with the sound on loud or headphones).

    As a Doom game? Well, not quite as much. The duct tape mod helped though.

    So Doom 4 won't be a shooter lights out hide and go seek? Good to hear. I hope they follow suit with a 'remake (of sorts)' of Doom 2, being on Earth :)

    LOL- Yeah and AVP would of been good if it was not so crap.

    Perhaps the playful jab at the art team might be about how a lot of games artists don't like having lights on, or sun coming in, because it reflects off their monitors while working. Makes it more difficult to get your textures and lighting working looking right, etc.

    I loved Doom 3, and IMO the darkness was the best part.

    I hate that people played it with the flashlight mod, not realising that half the tension comes from the fact that you can either see or shoot, but not necessarily both at the same time. That was a really well thought out feature, but it was very misunderstood. Look at Metro 2033 for example, you had the visor which cracked and obscured your vision, you had the condensation when you were outside, and it was pretty dark for the most part... but Doom 3 cops flack just for being too dark, even though it's dynamic lighting engine still holds up today.

    Can't wait to see what's gonna happen with the next Doom, and while I liked the look of Doom 3, if it looked more like the originals I'd be okay with it being brighter... but if they're going to go with the Event Horizon type feel again, I'd hope it's just as dark.

      Amen to that. The palpable feeling of helplessness you got from putting your gun away in order to illuminate the darkness and the panic you felt when a monster came screaming towards you wanting to make balloon animals out of your entrails was clearly deliberate and Doom 3 would have felt like half the game it was if I'd played with the duct tape mod. Even the one level where you don't GET your flashlight -no less a level than Hell itself- is perfectly playable.

      The game's bigger problem was that EVERY enemy encounter was scripted- your marine could sit down in a blood-stained hallway in the middle of a base supposedly overrun with demons for a spot of tea if you felt like it and if you didn't move forward the demons would be content to let you. Once you realised that the game became massively less scary than it would otherwise be- you'd KNOW when to switch from your flashlight to a gun because you'd see the demons coming even before they teleported in out of thin air. Hopefully they'll fix that in Doom 4.

      Great game, though. Expansion was good too.

    To be honest I never played it when it came out. I bought it in the christmas Steam sales for like 5 bucks, but when I went to play it... I saw it didn't support widescreen?!?! wtf?! I thought it was supposed to be bleeding-edge tech when it came out?

      Yeah it was... in 2004... before widescreen really took off.

      I'm 99% sure however that there's a mod out there which fixes it.

      id's engines support widescreen since Quake 3, but for some reason the resolutions weren't presented to the game's UI. However all you need to do is open the DoomConfig.cfg file in the "base" directory in your Doom 3 installation directory (under Steam that is probably C:\Program Files\Steam\steamapps\Common\Doom 3\base or something like this, i'm on my iMac now and can't check it) and modify the r_customHeight and r_customWidth to your vertical and horizontal resolution (like, say, 1080 and 1920 for 1920x1080), r_mode to -1 and r_aspectRatio to 1 or 2 (1 for 16:9 and 2 for 16:10 aspect ratio).

      Note that the HUD is stretched to fit the screen but that is hardly noticeable and doesn't bother the game.

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