So there’s been a formidable drought with Doom’s multiplayer – whether that’s attributed to the servers, or to a lack of community, remains to be seen. Anyway, the dreaded Doom drought finally broke, and I got to play a few games with the latest content.
Hell Followed – much like the previous DLC, Unto the Evil – brings three new maps, one new weapon and more hack modules, taunts and customisation options than could even be healthy or helpful. I praised Unto the Evil, saying that its maps and weapons helped to spice up gameplay, even if it was over priced. And like the previous DLC, Hell Followed adds some impressive maps to Doom’s playlist.
Molten is reminiscent of the campaign levels. It’s a fusion between an industrial and demonic environment. The map is quite intuitively designed. And while it’s fun, it’s nothing that we haven’t seen before. On the other hand, Argent Breach is a sort of homage to the gothic horror we saw in older video games. It’s a departure from the typical industrial and futuristic setting of Doom, and this style really makes it stand out. The map runs through a dimly lit church and it pushes home the gothic mood with its gloomy shades of blues and blacks. It’s also home to a number of mini-arena sections where you and your enemies can duel. The final map, Orbital, sits on the other end of the spectrum. Set on a space station, this vertical map is about as futuristic as Doom’s ever been. You can jump seamlessly from interior levels to exterior and experience the different gravities that these settings offer. Outside, you’ll be able to make soaring leaps between platforms and engage enemies in jumping battles. Inside, gravity returns to normal and combat regains its usual fast pace.
The new weapon – The Reaper – is the first demonic weapon available in multiplayer. It’s a burst fire rifle that looks incredibly cool, but it’s not exactly game changing. The weapon isn’t super powerful – which I suppose in itself is a good thing – and as interesting as its aesthetic may be, The Reaper doesn’t dethrone the plasma rifle and combat shotgun as the game’s go-to weapon combo.
Hell Followed also brings the Cacodemon to multiplayer. On the whole it’s pretty hard to use, and even when you get used to it there are more powerful and more mobile demons to play. However, the Cacodemon is outrageously fun. The viewpoint and abilities combine to make Cacodemon a real standout. In fact, it’s so much fun that I chose to play it over other statistically better demons. The other content – the hack modules and customisation options – aren’t really worth commenting on. It’s just more of the same supplementary stuff that came with Unto the Evil. You won’t miss it, if you don’t have it; if you do have it, you probably won’t notice it.
At the end of the day, the new content isn’t great. The last DLC provided some exceptional maps that expanded the multiplayer experience. And while Hell Followed continues the trend, I can’t justly recommend forking out again for a multiplayer only DLC – especially when Bethesda released arcade mode as a free update.
Also, keep in mind that, on Xbox One, the Doom multiplayer is suffering. You’ll definitely be waiting for games, and more often than not, you’ll be waiting a long time. So even if you can reconcile Hell Followed’s price tag, you probably won’t reconcile the time you’ll waste waiting to play it. And though that might not be Bethesda’s fault, it’s something that you need to know.