Deathmatch started with Doom. It went on to become many different and more evolved things, but the core began with Doom way back when and many have felt it to be an integral part of the franchise’s long history. So why isn’t it in Doom Eternal? According to Bethesda’s Pete Hines, there are a number of reasons, but one of the more interesting is that Bethesda and id Software didn’t want to do it just to do it.
Our own David Craddock spoke with Hines recently on everything from the individuality of Bethesda Game Studios games like Arkane’s Dishonored and Avalanche’s Rage 2 to the Bethesda’s amount of say in id’s development of Doom Eternal in a lengthy Doom interview. One of the more interesting questions that came up was whether or not id or Bethesda felt Doom Eternal was missing out by skipping the addition of a staple like Deathmatch once again. Hine’s answer is surprisingly blunt at first.
“No. That mode is eons old,” said Hines, splitting our hearts in twain. But he goes on to explain the reasoning behind it. “
“The biggest problem we thought we had with Doom 2016 was that [multiplayer] wasn't done at id, and felt really disconnected from the base game that everybody loved,” Hines told us. “Whether you're playing by yourself or with others, we want it to feel like you're all playing the same game. That's as opposed to, ‘I'm a badass demon slayer in single-player, but when I go over to multiplayer, there are no demons, and it's just Deathmatch.’ I don't know what that has to do with [Doom] other than that, well, a couple of decades ago we had that, so we should just have that again.”
It may come off flippant or perhaps even dismissive of the history between Doom and the game mode it pioneered, but for his part, Hines finished with a little bit of rational logic.
“We don't want to do something just for the sake of doing it, or because something has always been a certain way.”
It seems to point the fact that if id or Bethesda didn’t feel like they had anything worth innovating or polishing in a classic Doom Deathmatch mode, it might have ended up more disappointing that anything. Nonetheless, it’s more than a little bit of a shame that we’ll go without a proper Deathmatch.
Even so, there’s plenty to like about what Doom Eternal does have. Be sure to check out the full interview, as well as our Countdown to Doom, featuring a wealth of content and features leading up to the ultimate launch of Doom Eternals on March 20, 2020.
TJ Denzer posted a new article, Bethesda's Pete Hines defends not including Deathmatch in Doom Eternal