DOOM Eternal Invasion PVP Teases Largely Expanded Multiplayer, Says Id

TJ Denzer,

August 12, 2018 5:00 PM

The presentation for DOOM Eternal blew the lid off at QuakeCon 2018, but one detail that left us largely curious was the briefly shown invasion mechanic. Id Software says it's a teaser for a much bigger multiplayer experience.

When DOOM Eternal showed up at QuakeCon 2018, id Software made sure it came to play with an explosive trailer featuring a vast array of amazing expanded content, tools, and brutality for the much-anticipated Hell-On-Earth shooter. However, the fast-paced trailer saved an interesting surprise, finally introducing some multiplayer to DOOM Eternal in the form of a player invasion. Though brief, it opened the doors for PVP and multiplayer content in this explosive DOOM sequel, and when we spoke with id Software Creative Director Hugo Martin and Executive Producer Marty Stratton, they claimed it was just a teaser of much greater things to come.

The invasion mechanic in DOOM Eternal appears to be similar to the Dark Souls style in function. In a DOOM Eternal campaign, other players can invade as enemy demons to try to kill the player character. During the presentation, it was also mentioned that this would be a function you could toggle on and off. You can see the trailer that features the mechanic below. It appears around the 15 minute mark of the video.

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The brief information on the invasion mechanic was left at that during the presentation, but during our interview with Martin and Stratton, they shared just a little bit more on the matter.

“We had playable demons in the multiplayer component of DOOM 2016,” Stratton explained. “And they were really fun, albeit a little overpowered. You could kind of debate different features of them. Just from a, ‘Is it fun to play as a big badass demon?’ The answer is a definite yeah. And because they’re created to be so unique even from a campaign perspective - playing as one or many of them - each is a different kind of dynamic and experience.”

Stratton and Martin stressed that this is an approach that fell in line with expanding all of DOOM Eternal to be that much better than its 2016 predecessor. For one, id is handling all of it this time. 2016’s multiplayer was handled in part by Certain Affinity and its map editor was crafted by Escalation Studios. Stratton stressed that this time, it’s all happening in house.

“We’re not outsourcing like we did with DOOM 2016,” Stratton continued. “It is different, it’s much more aligned with what the DOOM experience is, that people expect, and people want. And I think once we get down that path people are going to be really excited about what it means for playing DOOM both as the Slayer and as a demon.”

From top to bottom, DOOM Eternal is set to feature a hefty slew of new enemies, all of which would make for interesting experiences in its teased multiplayer.
From top to bottom, DOOM Eternal is set to feature a hefty slew of new enemies, all of which would make for interesting experiences in its teased multiplayer.

To the team, it’s all about making Eternal more, from every angle. And that philosophy extends to what the multiplayer will be.

“Here’s the thing: Aggression,” Martin describes. “It comes back to the beginning of how do we determine the mechanics, what makes the player feel more aggressive? We start there. How do we feel it’s groundbreaking and pushing the envelope? Make it more aggressive than you’ve felt before. And then, how do we give it that dose of steroids? It’s important, all of it. The DNA of DOOM is that it’s an aggressive, frenetic experience that’s skillful, makes you think, and trains your reaction times. It’s like speed chess with shotguns and rocket launchers.”

It leaves a question: in a weekend where we saw a wealth of fantastically frenetic single-player content for DOOM Eternal, why did we only get a glimpse of this multiplayer experience? According to the id team, it’s because they want to give that experience its own special time and spotlights.

“We do want to save a whole round of interviews and gameplay just around that invasion mechanic,” Stratton admitted. “Because it is kind of a key component of the higher-level goal, which is to make the DOOM combat experience that people love a social one and give people the opportunity to play with their friends. It’s a totally different experience. Just on the surface, to be a Mancubus is way different than being the Slayer, and that’s without even getting into the mechanics of it. It’s really fun, and we’re going to unveil that at a time where we can really take the time to talk about it in-depth.”

It you want a blatant example of id Software's bigger, better, faster, stronger philosophy for DOOM Eternal, look no further than the BFG-10000.
It you want a blatant example of id Software's bigger, better, faster, stronger philosophy for DOOM Eternal, look no further than the BFG-10000.

When everything is said and done, DOOM Eternal was an easy highlight of the entire weekend at QuakeCon, and that’s with just the single-player experience on display. If Stratton, Martin, and the rest of id Software and Bethesda put even an ounce of the electricity into the presentation of DOOM Eternal multiplayer, then it would appear we’re in for a treat in the future. Fortunately, it looks like id Software and DOOM Eternal doesn’t want to give us a treat. It’s getting ready to serve a whole hellish buffet.

DOOM Eternal wasn’t the only game catching all the attention at QuakeCon though. Be sure to check out the reveals of Fallout 76, including card-based level-up mechanics, protection against griefing, and the status of mod support for the game.



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