Tarkkanäköinen tuomio ’94

DOOM0003

Vuosi on 1994. On kaksi vuotta siitä, kun Wolfenstein 3D käynnisti ensimmäisen persoonan ammuskelupelien genren. ID Software julkaisee Doomin ensimmäisen episodin sharewarena. Mitään niin hienoa ja pelottavaa ei ole ennen PC:llä nähty. BBS:t ja pelilehdistö sekoavat. Ylistyslaulut jatkuvat vuosia. Doom valitaan historian parhaiden pelien joukkoon. Verinen moottorisaha laulaa satojen tuhansien pelaajien koneilla.

Ja mitä tekee Edge-lehti Doom-arvostelussaan? Ennustaa oikein koko FPS-genren ongelmat. Yhden pelin perusteella.

Where’s the variety in the gameplay (it’s all just kill, kill, kill)? And looking at it coldly, what is there really in Doom (apart from the graphics) to set it above even the most average, most highly repetitive and tedious 2D shoot ‘em up?

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Okay, there are some visual touches in this game that will literally blow your mind like the scaling and parallax on the distant mountains – but then everyone said much the same about the hi-res images in The 7th Guest. They may look great, but what do you do with them? You don’t ever get to explore those distant mountain ranges – they’re really little more than impressive padding (as in The 7th Guest, you’re just meant to watch them – in awe).

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Doom is certainly a gorgeous-looking game – it has also, incidentally, made serious advances in what people will expect of 3D graphics in future. But the gameplay is as narrow as it gets: you run along beautifully parallaxed corridors and through stunning 3D rooms shooting at a near endless supply of green lizards. That’s it.

(Edge)

Erityisesti arvostelun loppukaneetti on legendaarinen:

As it is, once the power of Doom’s graphics has worn off (they’re amazing, so give that at least a week or two), you’lI be longing for something new in this game. lf only you could talk to these creatures, then perhaps you could try and make friends with them, form alliances… Now, that would be interesting.

Kuinka paljon on muuttunut vuodesta 1994? Tämän genren suhteen ei ihan hirveästi. Pelasin heinäkuussa Battlefield 3:n yksinpelin läpi. Niin kivaa kuin loputtomien vihollisten räiskiminen onkin, siteeratut kohdat Edgen kritiikistä pätevät edelleen.

Samaa voi sanoa vaikkapa Bioshock Infinitestä, jonka yhteydessä Edgen Doom-arvostelua onkin siteerattu:

You can argue that the faults of BioShock Infinite are the latest and most unfortunate result of the first-person genre that found bedrock in both Doom (reflexes and gore) and Myst (architecture and mystery) in the mid-1990s, two sharply different trajectories that have been bound into problematic convergence ever since. While the two genres remain fruitfully exploited in separation, all attempts at marrying the two—and thus discovering the elusive union of the shooter’s popularity and the exploration game’s more literary aspirations—have remained ill considered. In a way, mainstream videogames are still completely dumbfounded by Edge magazine’s famous 1994 criticism of Doom: “If only you could talk to these creatures.”