Here’s DOOM Running On The Switch

DOOM (but not on the Switch)

So, the DOOM reboot is making its way to Nintendo’s portable console. And it’s the full version of the game as well, albeit with a lower resolution and a ton of effects turned down. Fortunately people have gotten hands on with the game, and so far, it’s playable.

A bunch of outlets and YouTubers have been posting footage overnight showing DOOM running on the Switch in handheld mode. It’s from a recent press event held by Bethesda, and reports from there are that the game runs at a relatively smooth 30fps. Not 100% of the time, although there is still time for optimisations before launch, so keep that in mind.

If you’re playing DOOM in docked mode, the game will run at 720p. A.V. Club, which attended the preview, said the action only slowed down a few times “during the opening level’s most hectic moments”. It was also much, much better with the Pro Controller:

The Joy-Con are just not up for the task of handling a first-person shooter, especially not one that demands as much as movement as Doom. Its convex, bubble-like analog sticks aren’t suited for the sudden changes of direction and precise aiming you need, and wrapping your index fingers up to those awkward, clicky little shoulder buttons was a pain, especially if you map the jump button to one of them so you can leap and aim at the same time (which you absolutely have to do).

If you want to see over-the-shoulder footage – Nintendo often only permits footage to be captured if the console is visible – there’s a couple of videos from Nintendo World Report and Digital Foundry below.

I’m not surprised by the reports – the Switch has a pretty limited CPU and GPU compared to the major consoles, and particularly PCs. And while a shooter could be just fine at 30fps, DOOM has a particular flow that might be disrupted by that.

I’m keen to find out for myself just how well it holds up in the most intense of firefights, particularly at the end when you go berserker and start chaining glory kills. But we’ll find out more around Christmas, when DOOM‘s Switch port is scheduled for release.

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