One of last year’s nicest surprises was that the long-overdue Doom ‘4’— announced in 2008—is utterly terrific. The game’s success lies with how it captures the swagger of the original Doom without trying to translate its techniques directly. The levels are as receptive to exploration as those of the original, and the gunplay unfolds like a mix of Quake and Unreal fed through Far
Cry’s animation suite. The game also speaks to collective weariness of exposition in action games by roughing up its own narrative—one of the first things Doomguy does is smash a speaker before someone can fill him in on the backstory. Together with MachineGames’ rebooted Wolfenstein:The NewOrder, it suggests that id’s licences have plenty of life in them yet.