With DOOM Eternal releasing but seeing a delay on Switch, us hybrid gamers must take solace by mercilessly fighting off hordes of demons in this Nintendo 64 remaster. DOOM 64 takes us back to a simpler time, where MTV was king and denim-on-denim was only slightly frowned upon.
DOOM 64 is just like the others with its fast-paced, straight out of the gate mayhem that we’ve all grown to know and love. In a classic first-person shooter such as this, shooting is like aiming with your face. It’s nostalgic and dated, but in an endearing sort of way. You can only aim left-to-right as when you shoot, the game registers a straight line down the middle of the screen and any enemy unlucky enough to be caught in that line, no matter high or low, will be hit. With the Switch version, gyro controls allow you to fine-tune your targeting left and right with the Pro Controller/Dual Joy-Con grip.
When you complete a level, your gear and ammo carry onward to the next. However when you die, you are left with nothing but a pistol and your fists, forcing you to build up your arsenal again. This makes sense in theory, but when you die in a later level, it sharply ramps up the difficulty to the point where you’ll have hit an infuriating road block.
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The rumble is nice and intuitive, going off whenever your gun fires. The original DOOM 64 wasn’t compatible with the system’s Rumble Pak, so this is a nice addition for modern gamers that are used to a bit of tactile feedback in their shooters.
My biggest gripe throughout all of DOOM 64 would have to be in its map design. Aside from colour-coded doors to reflect which key needs to be obtained, it can often be difficult work out where you are going.
When you bring up the map with the X button, you cannot move the screen around, so it only shows a very zoomed in depiction of your surroundings. Correction: you can move the screen around, but you’ll be moving your icon that shows your position, which actually moves your character in real-time! I died a couple times before I realised what was going on.
Aside from the poor map work, the room variety keeps the gameplay very fresh. You’ll often find yourself going from a very cramped corridor, fighting off baddies in tight spaces, to more open spaces where you can utilise the space around you. This helps to keep the gameplay fresh and compliments it well.
The story is bare minimal, but that is to be expected in a DOOM title. It’s your stock standard putting an end to a classic Hell invasion. Fight demons, get to the Mother of Demons and have a badass time doing it.
As this remaster has launched on the same date as DOOM Eternal on other platforms, Id Software were clever enough to develop a brand new level for DOOM 64 that ties into it. No spoilers from us here, but it’s a nice addition if DOOM lore is your thing… if not, it’ll just seem like another level.
Graphics / Art Design
DOOM 64 on Switch brings us back to a simpler times when 2D sprites dominated 3D spaces. There’s something endearing about a remastered Nintendo 64 game and this one is sharp and clean whilst still keeping true to its original aesthetic.
Music / Sound Design
In levels, DOOM 64 opts for a more atmospheric white noise tone, emphasising the sound effects of guns and explosions as well as the cries of anguish from demons and the Demon Slayer alike.
As you progress through levels, your character grunts A LOT. Sometimes it’s warranted, such as when getting hit or heck, I’d even let pressing a switch slide; but when walking down stairs? That’s more dramatic than watching tennis players every time they hit the ball!
Final Score: 76%
A large pepperoni pizza, garlic bread, a bottle of coke and DOOM 64; these are the ingredients for a full wave of 90s nostalgia. DOOM 64 is packed to the brim with intense, maniacal fun, however its 23 years has not allowed it to age well in the map design department. With all that being said, Id Software has done a great job at making the game bright and appealing on a modern widescreen TV, which is all we can really ask for at the low price of $5USD.
Thank you for checking out our DOOM 64 Switch review, thank you Powerup PR for providing us the review code and thank you to our $5 and up Patreon Backer for their ongoing support:
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