E3 2002: More Doom III details

We take a look at a completely different screening of Doom III. Details inside.

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When we saw the 2867326demonstration of Doom III at the id Software booth, we were blown away. Doom III is by far the best-looking game we've ever seen, and its superb use of atmospheric lighting creates an air of horror that few games have ever conveyed. We were able to discern a lot of information about the game just from watching the 11-minute demo, but needless to say, we were hungry for more. So when Lead Designer Tim Willits presented a completely different demonstration of Doom III at the E3 Sneak Peeks panel, we were waiting with pens in hand.

Willits' presentation was noticeably shorter than the primary demo of Doom III--it ran for only four minutes, and it showed a mix of familiar and new clips of this exciting game. The demo opens up with a camera panning around futuristic laboratories, zooming down dimly lit hallways, and following a high-speed lift as it speeds up an elevator shaft. Like the primary demonstration, this presentation of Doom III was all rendered using the impressive 3D engine.

We next saw a quick montage of the game's many undead creatures, including a commando leaping through a pane of glass, shattering it to bits; a pink demon roaming around a futuristic foundry; and another horrific creature taking a big chunk out of a bloated body that was sprawled on a bathroom floor stained with blood. According to Willits, the foundry scene gives a good indication of the particle effects in Doom III--and it does, as the sparks and waves of heat from the molten steel were all displayed beautifully.

Willits went on to comment on the status of the game's development. As id Software fans know, Doom III has been in development for nearly 24 months. Thankfully, Willits said that the Doom III technology is completely done, and even though there are still some obvious optimization issues that need to be worked out, the design team is now fully engrossed in finishing the actual game itself. Interestingly, Willits said that id is creating Doom III backward--the team is designing the last levels first, and the first levels last. Even though this first section of the game is still incomplete, Willits said that players will start the game before the forces of hell are unleashed and will be able to roam around and interact with nonplayer characters freely.

Some other interesting tidbits that Willits revealed were that Nine Inch Nails' Trent Reznor did the music and sound for the E3 demo and that he and id Software are currently in negotiations to do the music for the final game. Willits also said that id has no current plans to do an Xbox port of Doom III, though the game could hypothetically run on Microsoft's hardware.

As usual, we'll have more details on this game as they become available.

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