1993’s Doom Requires A Bethesda Account To Play On Switch, Quickly Becomes An Internet Joke

1993’s Doom Requires A Bethesda Account To Play On Switch, Quickly Becomes An Internet Joke
Screenshot: Kotaku, Doom

Today, Bethesda announced the first three Doom games were all be coming to modern consoles, including the Nintendo Switch. What Bethesda didn’t mention was that you’d first need to create a Bethesda.net account in order to play them.

ResetEra’s Nibel pointed out the requirement on Twitter earlier today. While Doom and Doom 2 only require you to log in to a Bethesda account once to unlock the game, Doom 3 will require it every time you play in order for all of the features and content to be available.

It’s an especially bizarre requirement since none of the games have an online component. Each game only offers local multiplayer and doesn’t require an internet connection to play beyond the logins.

I bought the original Doom earlier today due to the nostalgia of seeing the shooter I’d first encountered on the SNES decades ago playable in my hand on Nintendo’s newest console, but getting stuck at a login screen before I’d even fired my first bullet snapped my rose-coloured glasses in half.

Is Bethesda really that desperate to get people signed up for Bethesda marketing emails?

In response to the requirement people have been poking fun at Bethesda and imagining what it would be like if the login prompts appeared in other classic games:

ImageTwitter” loading=”lazy” > Screenshot: Shadow Hog, Twitter

ImageTwitter” loading=”lazy” > Screenshot: Steph Tru, Twitter
ImageTwitter” loading=”lazy” > Screenshot: Professor Whom, Twitter

ImageTwitter” loading=”lazy” > Screenshot: Tonch, Twitter
ImageTwitter” loading=”lazy” > Screenshot: TMOG, Twitter
ImageTwitter” loading=”lazy” > Screenshot: Monkey D Lenny, Twitter
ImageTwitter” loading=”lazy” > Screenshot: Wii, Twitter
ImageTwitter” loading=”lazy” > Screenshot: The Herthium, Twitter

Bethesda did not respond to a request for comment about why the login requirements were added to the new versions of the decades old games.


  • Yeah I don’t understand the wisdom of doing this for a game which is strictly an offline-only affair. Maybe if it had online multiplayer included. Plus the music in the game is weirdly slow and from what I hear it’s a bit janky to play due to being a Unity remake of the original games.

      • I could understand remaking it, but a couple things, why not a newer iD engine? Surely that’d feel more “Doom-like”? And second, if you’re gonna remake it in a modern engine, then why not clean it up with better textures, models, etc. Keep the same game-play but make it look “modern”.

        • IMO, the feel of DOOM is intrinsically linked to the engine. Remaking it into a new engine destroys that.

          • Yeah that’s what I was getting at. If you’re going to remake the game and re-capture the feel then using an engine made by iD seems like the best way to go.

        • Are any of the id engines compatible with the switch? I did a quick search and couldn’t find a game that’s already on it.

          If they’re not compatible, then they’d need to be ported over and that’s a fair bit of work and Unity’s designed for flexibility and being platform agnostic.

          • Doom is open source these days. You just need a valid WAD file to be able to run it. Modders have had it running on switch for ages.

            Most modded consoles have the ability to run doom.

      • Alternatively it is the same old engine but they’re using Unity to blit the framebuffer to the screen and handle controller input, and take care of all the cross platform details.

        It’s probably not the most efficient way of running Doom, but it with the age of the game it hardly matters.

  • I’ve been bemoaning this situation for years. Steam started the trend and it’s permeated everything 🙁

    I’m just glad GOG still hasn’t caved into this BS attitude.

    • Had a chuckle at the Half Life one – because that shit actually happened with Half Life when Steam first released.

  • Just go read their privacy and data collection policies or anyone else’s for that matter, explains everything you want to know about why.

    These days we are both the consumer and the product.

  • How do you fuck up Doom? It’s so simple. The game is right there. Just make it work on the console and don’t do anything else.

      • Outside of Bioware, I think it would be exceptionally difficult for a studio to fuck up as hard as Bethesda did with 76.
        But damn, I woulda hoped they’d spent all their incompetence on 76.

        • They learned the hard way spending decades relying on modders to fix your bugs comes back to bite you in the ass

        • There are some companies and people for whom incompetence isn’t something that they spend. It’s something they hone and refine through repeated iterations.

  • Wish I could get a refund. I rechecked the Switch Store page for Doom/2/3 and it only has a single line at the bottom of the page, I wouldn’t have brought if I realized. Just straight up deleted the games off my Switch.

    • Australia has some pretty good consumer protection policies, if a product fails to live up to what you expect from it in any way you’re almost always entitled to a refund. Worth looking into.

      • You’re probably right, just really disappointed. There has been an update that will remove the Bethesda account requirement for the games, as of now the account is still needed.

  • I miss when game companies only made games and everything else hadn’t started happening yet, all the shareholder bullshit and data collection and shady bullshit that all of our favourites do now.

    • I still remember the days when EA took out a print advert in gaming magazines saying they were a place electronic artists could thrive..

      Bethesda burned a lot of good will with FO76 and when they release another Fallout or Elder Scrolls people are definitely not going to be as forgiving of Bethesda’s usual janky gameplay and bugs.

      I hope (pointlessly I know) that Bethesda learn from FO76 that they can’t simply wait for modders to be their customer support for patches

    • If there’s no ‘made with Unity’ splash screen then the engine is licensed. The ‘trial version’ text can appear via a few bugs in the engine though.

      (I made a previous comment that the text doesn’t appear in Unity at all, but I was mistaken – apparently they added it a few months ago to the personal edition if the build was done from an IP in China or Taiwan, which is a bad move imo.)

    • But is it a “mistake” mistake, or a “we didn’t think people would care this much” mistake?

      The cynical side of me thinks the primary aim is to increase the number of people with Bethesda accounts in order to reduce the barriers to direct sale of games, DLC, or in-game goods.

      • It’s Bethesda. I would side with the “how much can we get away with before people are angry” train of thought, so the latter.

        • Let’s face it, if it’s a genuine mistake it would be far from the worst bug ever seen in a Bethesda game.

    • “A mistake”

      Just like Battlefront 2 was structured to instil a sense of pride and accomplishment

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