id devs worked 100+ hour weeks to make Doom
Creative director Tom Hall adds, "Taking a weekend off was looked on with disdain."
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id Software developers regularly worked 100+ hour weeks during the development of the company's iconic 1993 first-person shooter Doom, creative director Tom Hall has said.
"In the early days of id, we were like the limbs of one big creature, working brilliantly in parallel. But I now felt isolated [during the development of Doom]. We worked 14 to 16 hours a day, seven days a week, with little outside contact," Hall recalled in new Guardian feature. "Taking a weekend off was looked on with disdain. Playing fighting games, often on the [rare Japanese console] Neo-Geo, was one of our few releases."
Hall also discussed the events surrounding his departure from id Software.
"We were all great friends and obsessed with making games but, in the end, bad working relationships and horrible communication on both sides put me in creative molasses," Hall said. "You can't afford that with a small team."
Also in the retrospective feature, id Software founder John Romero recalled the controversy involving Doom after the Columbine shootings in 1999.
"We were criticized after the Columbine shootings, but we knew it wasn't our fault. There have been violent games since the 1800s, when you could put a coin in a penny arcade and watch an execution scene play out," Romero said. "I was like: I'm not getting caught up in this age-old debate. I didn't comment on any of it. Whatever the new thing is, people always blame that--Judas Priest, Ozzy, comic books. But the big problem is people not being in touch with their kids."
Romero also revealed that Doom's art, including walls that look like spines, screaming faces, and hellish monsters, was partially inspired by Swiss surrealist HR Giger. You can check out Giger's work on his website today.
id Software is currently working on Doom 4, which has been in development since at least 2008.