back to article Doom: The FPS that wowed players, gummed up servers, and enraged admins

On December 10, 1993, after a marathon 30-hour coding session, the developers at id Software uploaded the first finished copy of Doom for download, the game that was to redefine first-person shooter (FPS) genre. Hours later IT admins wanted id's guts for garters. Doom wasn't the first FPS game, but it was the iPhone of the …

  1. Mark 85 Silver badge

    Wolfenstein 3D, Doom, and Quake. Oh happy times. Where I worked at the time, blocked playing it during business hours with immediate termination if you were caught (two were and set the example for the rest of us). But after hours, half the engineering department stayed at their desks (including management) for several hours. After playing that, I started learning programming and changed careers to IT.

    I think ID did change a lot of things with the first getting non-techies into IT. There were a lot of "engines" out there in that time and many of probably got our start working with the engines and coding.

    Have a pint, ID... for the stuff legends are made of.

    1. AMBxx Silver badge

      It's amazing to think there are only 12 months between Wolfenstein and Doom. I wish we could still see leaps like that.

      1. WallMeerkat

        The 90s were full of huge leaps like that. If you took a PC from 1991 and a PC from 1998 it was incredible the difference.

        Whereas if you took a PC from 2011 and from 2018 there really isn't that much of a difference.

        Even in the console world we started the 90s transitioning from 8 to 16 bit, then via the 32/64 bit Playstation-Saturn-N64 era, by the end of the decade we had Dreamcasts and getting ready for Playstation 2 - many of the games of which still hold up today.

        Mobile phones too, 1990 these were rare, brick like, and still had a whiff of finance yuppie about them, by the end of the 90s they fitted in your pocket, everyone had a mobile (thanks in part to PAYG) and they were getting internet connectivity (remember WAP?)

      2. juice Silver badge

        All credit to iD games...

        But hardware advances were a key driver of the improvements between the two games.

        W3d would (grudgingly) run on a 286 with just 640k of ram; Doom's official minimum spec was a 486 with 4mb of ram, though it would judder along on a 386 if you were desperate.

        Moore's law was very much the game developer's frenemy back then - it gave you more memory and CPU cycles to play with, but if you misjudged your release window, then your game would be either unusably sluggish or woefully primitive as compared to the competition.

        Hell, people still occasionally ask if $thing will run Crysis ;)

        1. TonyJ Silver badge

          Re: All credit to iD games...

          "...W3d would (grudgingly) run on a 286 with just 640k of ram; Doom's official minimum spec was a 486 with 4mb of ram, though it would judder along on a 386 if you were desperate..."

          Yes but it had to be a 386DX - wouldn't run on an SX. I know...I had to swap my motherboard and/or CPU.

          It's so long ago I can't really remember if it was just one or both or if they came as a unit back then.

          Didn't the original crash WAN links due to each round fired from the minigun being a while IPX packet? (None of that fangled TCP/IP back then, no siree).

          My mate and I used to have two desktop PC's (and 15" CRT's) on the dinning room table and connected by serial cables...or that might have been a bit later with Duke Nukem 3D.

          Fabulous fun though.

          1. Suncoast

            Re: All credit to iD games...

            >Didn't the original crash WAN links due to each round fired from the minigun being a while IPX packet? (None of that fangled TCP/IP back then, no siree).

            Yes! I worked for a large broadcaster back then that nearly lost it's network because of Doom. Not only affected Netware IPX/SPX, it affected the Cabletron spanning tree if I recall correctly.

            Doom was later assigned its own port # 666

          2. Justin Pasher

            Re: 386DX

            Not true. I ran it on an AST brand 386SX/25 with 4 MB of RAM. Yes, I had to shrink the game play window down about half way, but it was still playable (definitely not 30 fps, but playable). I do remember having to reboot with a clean AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS to free up enough memory to play, though.

            1. Jim 59

              Re: 386DX

              Original Doom was fully playable on a Dan 486DX with 4MB of RAM and a Spea V7 video card, I can report. As was original shareware Quake.

              That PC was a snip at only £1700, and that's 1993 money.

          3. Dabooka

            Re: All credit to iD games...

            So many of us experiencing identical flashbacks, especially the Dragon 32 to Amstrad 464 (and then 6128).

            Serial cables at the dining table were a thing at mine for while but soon I scored for some old cheapernet cards and hooked up a small token ring. I may be wrong but I only recall up to four players on head to head and can't recall internet play, but that might have been the limitations of my setup back then.

            I do recall LAN parties involving mates bringing base stations, CRT monitors, Soundblaster speakers / headphones, keyboards and mice for a whole weekend. Used to flip between Doom, Quake, Duke 3D, Heretic and Rise of The Triads.

            Ah the chicken spell in Heretic. Halcyon days.....

          4. Piro Silver badge

            Re: All credit to iD games...

            I am certain Doom didn't need a math co-processor- a 386sx was slow, but would work. I played it that way. Quake, on the other hand, required an fpu, as we'd call it today.

            1. Pirate Dave Silver badge

              Re: All credit to iD games...

              Yes, Doom didn't need a math-co, but Quake did. I know because at the time Quake came out, I was using a NexGen NX586, which (for reasons that elude me) didn't have a math chip in it. So I missed the early Quake bus until I saved up enough for a real Pentium. I had to while away my time playing Doom Eternal, Final Doom, etc...

            2. paulll

              Re: All credit to iD games...

              The 386SX was a 386 with a 24- rather than 32-bit external address bus; After the SX was introduced they rebranded the original as DX just for differentiation. None of 'em had an on-board co-pro, pretty sure. DX denoting an on-board co-pro was strictly 486 nomenclature.

              Ho hum.

      3. Jim 59

        "It's amazing to think there are only 12 months between Wolfenstein and Doom. I wish we could still see leaps like that."

        That is amazing. Some similarities to the home computer boom of the early 80s perhaps. Huge differences between products launched a year apart. I was lucky enough to have a Dragon 32 and an Amstrad cpc464. Admittedly, the latter was slightly more expensive and launched 20 months after the Dragon, but the difference was enourmous. Double the RAM, almost 5 x the MHz, much improved BASIC, larger keyboard, bundled tape recorder, monitor...

        For that matter, look at the Sinclair ZX81 vs the Spectrum. An even starger contrast, only 13 months apart.

    2. Jim 59

      When Doom launched in 93, I was a Unix systems administrator. We had no Doom plague on the Unix estate for obvious reasons. What we did have was pre-web Internet, enabling us to grab doom via FTP, copy the zip file and take it home on a floppy (or 3). University of Washington kindly had it in their FTP archive IIRC, one of the biggest on the Internet. What was it? or something.

      Okay we might have had the Mozilla browser by that time. Memory fades.

      1. Joe Gurman

        Niggling correction

        Wustl stands for Washington University of St. Louis, a private uni in Missouri, while the University of Washington is a state uni in Washington state.

        1. Jim 59

          Re: Niggling correction

          "Wustl stands for Washington University of St. Louis, a private uni in Missouri, while the University of Washington is a state uni in Washington state."

          Well well. I never knew that. All that FTP grabbing was actually from Missouri and not Washington. The Wustl archive was an excellent resource at the time, and very large.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        We had no Doom plague on the Unix estate for obvious reasons.

        Really? I worked for Sun at the time, and someone decided that Doom would be a cool demo for the new SPARCstations. A loaner system (SS5 IIRC) was arranged and Solaris port of Doom appeared (I don't know if money was exchanged, probably so). It was available free to customers.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Thumb Up

          Doom on UNIX

          Yep my memory as well starting uni in early 1990s. Doom was available for a ton of UNIX systems by a few years after release. Kind of remember seeing it on IRIX as well and people were amazed by the frame rate but not the people who programmed it usually in the computer lab. Remember them yawning at the graphics (didn't use hardware accel I think) but playing none the same.

        2. Jim 59

          "Really? I worked for Sun at the time, and someone decided that Doom would be a cool demo for the new SPARCstations."

          Excellent, and not surprising that somebody at Sun would do this, being an innovative place by nature. However, Unix Doom must have come some time after Doom was launched on the PC, which is the era I was talking about. By the time I left in '95, Doom had not made it to our Sun network, but the software engineers had written themselves a version of network Battlezone, seemingly.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            However, Unix Doom must have come some time after Doom was launched on the PC,

            I still have the binaries (but sadly no SPARC system with a graphics card). The earliest ones date from the Christmas holidays 1994/5, late Dec to early Jan, but I guess I'd have had them before they were widespread outside the company.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      We had 2 devs sacked for playing it. We used to play it on the graveyard shift with the security staff using the training room where the PCs where all set up. On nights we did play the network backups would take about 20% longer to complete, our daytime counterparts in Ops could never work out why! Ha ha!

    4. macjules

      Ah, happy memories. I remember spending a weekend in early 1994 networking a minor civil service department. How did we test the network? By installing Doom on certain Windows-enabled computers and playing an all-night death match ...

  2. Trixr

    "Hordes" of monsters, please

    I didn't really think of the monsters as little treasure chests you got to loot.

    The only way I got through the game was after learning about the GodMode cheat. To this day, it's one of the few games I've actually completed in its entirety. (Damn open world games and their never-ending side quests for feathers or whatever!)

    1. arctic_haze

      Re: "Hordes" of monsters, please

      It was easy to recognize the God Mode alumni during death matches, especially hen we switched to Quake.

      They were the ones who did not try do dodge rockets.

  3. C. P. Cosgrove
    Thumb Up

    It was great fun

    I was doing an HNC in Mechatronics at the time and I think every computer in the college had Doom 1 on it. I can see the sysadmins' problems even if the students didn't.

    It was great fun and the best thing about it was that it was a relatively small and simple game. Even on 486s, which is what the college was equipped with, it was quick to load. 5 - 10 minutes to kill ? You could have Doom up and running and be blasting baddies within about 30 seconds. I came back to it about 15 years later, v3 I think. Came on a DVD, about a 2GB install and took five minutes before you could shoot anything, and that was on a reasonable to good computer. It had lost the spontaneity and had become the preserve of serious gamers

    Chris Cosgrove

    1. Chozo

      Re: It was great fun

      My sentiments exactly, sometimes you just want to get your gun off. No emotional involvement with characters or complex mission profiles, clan stats, nagware for micro-payment upgrades. Just you against impossible odds screaming in the face of death long into the night. If it moves KILL IT!

      1. Korev Silver badge

        Re: It was great fun

        I liked Far Cry 3 Blood Dragon for that reason. They got rid of most of the annoying stuff and just made it fun.

  4. Phil Endecott

    3D Monster Maze

    on the ZX81. All down hill from there.

    1. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

      Re: 3D Monster Maze

      Ah, good times,.... although for the era, ('82) I think 'Phantom Slayer' on the Dragon 32 had the edge. Remember when we all had _different_ computers? Sigh,....

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      @Phil Endecott; 3D Monster Maze was impressive on a machine that was never intended to do that sort of thing (especially consider that it came out the same year as the ZX81 itself). I have to point out though, that while it had the "first person" bit, it wasn't a "shooter". (#) Now that I think of it, I'd love to see a version that let you shoot back at Rex ;-)

      @GruntyMcPugh; Yes, I agree that "Phantom Slayer" looks better- but to be fair, the Dragon 32 (and its near-twin the TRS-80)- were somewhat more graphically advanced machines than the ZX81.

      (#) Making it more what would be described nowadays as a "survival horror".

      1. Phil Endecott


        > it wasn't a "shooter"

        That’s why I liked it. Not a fan of killing things.

    3. Jim 59

      Re: 3D Monster Maze

      Hunt the Wumpus. All down hill from there.

  5. JohnFen

    I still play it to this day

    Yes, there are newer, better-looking FPSes around, but Doom occupies a space in my life that it shares with only a handful of other games from the general era: I still play them regularly to this day. The others? SimCity 2000, Civilization CTP, Redneck Rampage, Master of Orion - both 1 and 2 because they are very different games.

  6. Mayday Silver badge

    IPX Broadcasts

    Networking nightmare, but fun and worth it.

    1. FatGerman

      Re: IPX Broadcasts

      I worked for a LAN company, part of the official test spec for our network switch was that at least 8 people had to be able to play IPX broadcast Doom across it for an hour. Oh we had fun continually "failing" that test.

    2. jaffy2

      Re: IPX Broadcasts

      Played at lunchtime when working for a County Council. All pre rj-45 so on good ol' Co-ax, but it used to hammer the bridge between the buildings. In the end IT had a separate network for Doom (and then Wolfenstein).

      Great days!

  7. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge


    Overhauls like Brutal Doom have even kept it (more or less...) fresh.

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      Dear God

      Because Doom wasn't brutal enough ?

      Hey ! That mod seems interesting . . .

      1. bpfh Silver badge

        Re: Dear God

        It's worth installing, especially now that more modern versions have X and Y axis aiming, and more weapons to put your friendly neighbourhood imps through the meat grinder.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Dear God

          Y axis is overrated. Doom did perfectly well without it.

  8. PhilipN


    Ugh. Do not know whether it was actually the graphics on a VGA monitor or (or as well as) splattering organs but I succumbed to something like motion sickness in less than 2 minutes. Is it any better on modern systems? Cannot try since just thinking about it makes me queasy. Ok so it was the blood and guts.

    1. WallMeerkat

      Re: Graphics

      Didn't find Doom too bad, perhaps the low FPS on my 486 SX helped keep motion sickness at bay

      Whereas Wolf3D would give me splitting headaches, 10 minutes play at most.

      1. Evil Auditor

        Re: Graphics

        Whereas Wolf3D would give me splitting headaches, 10 minutes play at most.

        We all had this. Key was, once you get beyond 13 minutes your head forgot about the ache and it was just pure fun!

    2. Andy The Hat Silver badge

      Re: Graphics

      Me too. Even watching Doom over someone's shoulder for a couple of minutes would have the pit of my stomach stirring dangerously for a couple of hours ... Never worked out what it was and never had the issue with similar games.

      1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge

        Re: Graphics

        I had a period of sick leave (Flu - IIRC) & recall Wolf3D\Doom inducing a worse nausea sensation in my gut if I played it for too long might of been the combo of being ill in the first place with the resolution.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Graphics

        When hungover, watching somebody else play Doom was nauseating, oddly, playing it yourself wasn't.

  9. Franco Silver badge

    I still fire up DOSBox every so often and have a play of both Doom and Wolf 3D, and these days the new titles in those series are about the only games I buy.

    Lots of nice touches in the games, such as the big shit eating grin from BJ in Wolf 3D when he found the gatling gun. The horror aspect of Doom with the dark areas was ground breaking too.

    Doom and Wolf 3D are a bit like the first Black Sabbath albums, they laid the platform for what was to come even if they seem a bit primitive in parts now. I feel justified with the heavy metal comparison given the Doom soundtrack was strongly influenced by metal, some of the level music is inspired by Metallica, Slayer and Pantera.

    1. Jim 59

      @Franco +1 for mentioning "Pantera"

      1. Franco Silver badge

        Thank you sir, loved "A Vulgar Display of Power".

        The metal influence is still there in the franchise, if anyone has played Wolfenstein: The Old Blood they will know the end title song is a cover of La Complainte du Partisan performed by Mick Gordon with Tex Perkins on vocals and it is spectacularly good.

  10. GrumpyKiwi


    Freshly appointed to a sys admin role (and barely understanding any of it) and with an office full of 486's and weekend access, I was "the man" to all my mates as we blasted our way through 8 man deathmatches most Saturdays.

    1. Mooseman Silver badge

      Re: DoooooooooM...ed

      We used to do a sweep of users' personal drives to check for files that were banned by the company, executables, etc. On occasion we found games worth playing - night shifts (when all hell didn't break loose in the real world - were spent playing Doom across the network, I mean testing network speeds. Ahem.

  11. Jamie Jones Silver badge

    Stanger in a strange land..

    My first experience of doom was in an empty computer lab in Bar-Ilan University, Tel-Aviv.

    2 of the system admins there took me to this room, unplugged and terminated the ethernet from the rest of the department lan, and proceeded to blast the hell out of me so much, I never stood a chance.

    The only "weird" thing of this story is I'm British, not Jewish, and was never a student in Israel.. I was actually staying with a girl I met on irc, and we snuck into the uni to get online(!) - not sure how she talked us through security.. it was all Hebrew to me! But I hung around the computer centre for a few hours whilst she went shopping.

    When I was back home, I used to do the same thing at Swansea university.. I was never a student there, but acted like I was, and it got to the point the security guards would chat to me on patrols, and open the barrier for me (I was driving) without stopping me because they got to know me. But I digress...

    It's amazing what you can get away with if you simply act like you belong somewhere (and are a cocky gobshite like me!)

    1. tiggity Silver badge

      Re: Stanger in a strange land..

      @Jamie Jones

      Good skills for red teaming

      1. Jamie Jones Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: Stanger in a strange land..

        "Good skills for red teaming"

        I did do penetration testing for a while... paid to hack, but I'd love to do 'red teaming' in a more general sense. It would be almost like being a spy!

        Cheers for that - I'd never heard the term "red teaming" before - I had to look it up

    2. WallMeerkat

      Re: Stanger in a strange land..

      "It's amazing what you can get away with if you simply act like you belong somewhere (and are a cocky gobshite like me!)"

      Social engineering. Or walk around the place with a hi vis jacket and a clipboard, and request access to anywhere.

      1. JohnFen

        Re: Stanger in a strange land..

        "Or walk around the place with a hi vis jacket and a clipboard, and request access to anywhere."

        Yep, or as I learned from my younger years as a janitor -- if you push a mop bucket or garbage can, look irritated and in a hurry, look like you know exactly where you're going and that you would prefer not to go there, nobody will even notice that you're there, let alone confront you.

        1. DiViDeD

          Re: Stanger in a strange land..

          I believe a common tool in industrial espionage is the bored electrician in the corner of the conference room, apparently trying to trace a cable fault. Or so Steven Rambam tells me.

    3. Waseem Alkurdi

      Re: Stanger in a strange land..

      But I hung around the computer centre for a few hours whilst she went shopping.

      So both of you were shopping! xD

    4. Nick Pettefar

      Re: Stanger in a strange land..

      Ummm, being British does not rule you out from also being Jewish you know, Mr. Stanger.

      1. Jamie Jones Silver badge

        Re: Stanger in a strange land..

        "Ummm, being British does not rule you out from also being Jewish you know, Mr. Stanger."

        I know, which is why I qualified "I'm British" with "not Jewish". It was a list: "British, not Jewish,..." not a clairification ("British - not Jewish")

        Still have an upvote for pointing out my subject title... I did write it on android! (I know, still no excuse!)

        1. Jim 59

          Re: Stanger in a strange land..

          Jamie Jones is outed as a Perl programmer

          "It was a list: "British, not Jewish,..." not a clairification ("British - not Jewish")"

          Don't anybody come at me with Python nonsense.

          1. Jamie Jones Silver badge

            Re: Stanger in a strange land..

            One of the wiser posts to appear in El Reg forums.
            Cor, thanks! [ Note to editor: Insert "thumbs up" icon here ]

            "Jamie Jones is outed as a Perl programmer

            "It was a list: "British, not Jewish,..." not a clairification ("British - not Jewish")"

            No! Not a perl programmer! What's this "perl" of wisdom I've stumbled across? :-)

            "Don't anybody come at me with Python nonsense."

            Yeah! Mind you, it's not dead... It's just pining for the fjiords!

    5. Jim 59

      Re: Stanger in a strange land..

      One of the wiser posts to appear in El Reg forums.

      "It's amazing what you can get away with if you simply act like you belong somewhere (and are a cocky gobshite like me!)"

      We should all read this three times a day, especially the younger chaps on here.

  12. FozzyBear

    Ah the good ol' days, when IT would shut down from Friday lunch time to enjoy some wholesale slaughter

  13. Sanctimonious Prick
    Thumb Up

    Doom II

    I remember hooking up my brother's "computer" to my surround sound system, and scaring the crap out of myself playing Doom II!

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon

      Re: Doom II

      My first ever 'shit-yer-pants' moment was given to me by playing Doom in a dark room with the speakers up full. One of those 'ripper' monsters snuck up behind me and gave me a nasty surprise.

      In fact, I think I jumped so hard I bashed my legs on the underside of the desk :) Happy Days.

      Side note: I used to get accused of cheating in UT because I had such low ping times - benefits of working for an ISP and having a 100Mb connection direct to the locally hosted server ;)

      1. Anonymous South African Coward Silver badge

        Re: Doom II

        Heh! With DooM (original) I was wandering somewhere around in a maze.

        Alone, at night.

        Started to hear doggies bark, and was like WTF are dogs doing in Doom... until a pinky came round the corner and started scarfing at my face.

        I got such a fright :)

        Fun times, good times. :)

      2. Andy Non

        Re: Doom II

        I'm responsible for a colleague getting whiplash. Having thoroughly enjoyed playing all the levels I started writing my own, which was a very slow and meticulous process to get right. You had to make sure there were no catch-22 situations in the design where the player could remain alive but not be able to finish the level.

        My favourite level caught a co-worker out. He was exploring corridors and didn't notice a tiny gap in the wall. One of those big rocket launching monsters stuffed a rocket into his face at point blank range. The image of the rocket grew incredibly fast and filled the screen then everything went red. He was so startled he shot backwards on his swivel chair straight into a filing cabinet, twisted his head backwards and fell out of his chair onto the floor effing and blinding at me. I doubt he'll ever forget that game! I nearly wet myself laughing.

    2. Annihilator Silver badge

      Re: Doom II

      Never got the full "scare the bejeezus" moment with the original Doom, but definitely got it with the Doom 3 reboot in 2004. Headphones in a darkened room were terrifying - particularly before the flashlight mod that meant if you wanted to carry a weapon, you couldn't carry a torch.

    3. Pirate Dave Silver badge

      Re: Doom II

      The Arch-vile alert sound remains to this day the only game sound that stands up the hair on the back of my neck. Cyberdemon? Pah, just mecha-noise. Spider-mother? Just a bug to squash. But the arch-vile meant I were about to have a minute or two of a hard time, and possibly get killed.




      I miss the old days...

    4. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: Doom II

      My brother had got 2.1 sound on his PC. Mine only had tinny speakers. Plus he had a 486DX with 4MB or RAM, the flash bastard! So on a visit to his place in London I got that lovely thrilling deep boom sound as you pumped the shotgun into the fire demon's faces. Lovely! But then there was also an alarming bass rumble to the door opening sound - so you're alone in a dark room - lights off and just reflected light from the monitor, and this being Doom there's not much of that. Then the sound coming from behind you of a doro opening, and the grunting sound of those pig demon things. Coming towards me! I physically turned my head to see what was coming to get me, and therefore was too slow to use the keys to turn my character and got my face eaten off.

      Happy days! Games are much better now, but it's just sort of expected. My 3 gaming "realism" memories, are that early 90s Doom experience, playing TIE Fighter a few years later, and then being amazed by how good Half Life was on my new PC. The first time I got to drive the airboat I had this grin plastered on my face for several minutes...

    5. Kubla Cant Silver badge

      Re: Doom II

      We used to spend a couple of hours after finishing time playing Doom II in the office. On the way out, I could never help flinching when the lift doors opened.

      The brilliant thing with Doom was the scenarios that required ingenuity rather than just shooting. I recall a room that had two lethal monsters (armoured spider and...) on a platform in the middle. There was no way you could kill them both yourself, but if you ran round the room taking potshots at them you could eventually get them to fight each other. When one was dead, the victor was usually knackered enough to be killable.

  14. getHandle

    Atmospheric is one word

    Playing alone in the apartment, level nearly clear, music fades and then a door opens behind you in the game! The hairs on my neck still stand up to this day.

  15. Shadow Systems Silver badge

    W:ET, Doom, Quake...

    I remember them fondly as sources of eternal frustration as I couldn't play worth shit & got my ass handed to me every single time. From folks shoving me off rooftops, driving over me with tanks, shooting me repeatedly as I stepped out of the respawn points & returned from "ghost mode", asking me to disarm a landmine that they had boobytrapped with a second landmine such that I would get turned into chunky salsa in a shower of my own internal organs... And those were the folks trying to teach me how to play! The actual opponents weren't nearly that kind. *Happy sigh*

    I'd play them now for the fond (sado masochistic) memories of JUST how badly I could play, I'd probably suck LESS now that I'm totally blind & would simply stand still, spin in circles, & fire until the ammo runs out.

    "LOOK OUT! The blind guy's got a spoon! Run away! RUN AWAY!"

    *Dies in happy laughter*

  16. Voland's right hand Silver badge

    One of the things Carmack will pay for at the perly gates

    But as Carmack infamously said - “Story in a game is like story in a porn movie. It's expected to be there, but it's not important.”

    While being a step up in terms of graphics Doom and other Id Games took the game industry back in terms of game AI and held it there for decades. The success of a game where the "AI" is half a page of C prescribing random shuffling about made nearly everyone else skimp on it for more than a decade. It also decreased investment into other genres like flight simulators, strategy, etc with everyone going head over heals to do FPS.

    As far as "the story in the porn movie", sure, tell that Peter Molyneux, Glenn Wichmann and a few others.

    1. Stevie

      Re: One of the things Carmack will pay for at the perly gates


    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: One of the things Carmack will pay for at the perly gates

      TBF: AI is basically rubbish.

      All the machine learning stuff now is various classifiers, or curve fitting in a pipeline (so called deep learning).

      He wrote what was needed to make the game fun, I suspect that had you applied the current approach to ML/AI to doom era gaming, you'd not have ended up with a playable game.

      A good read is Mike Abrash's black book of graphics programming and the work needed to wring performance out of the VGA hardware show you how few cycles they had to spare.

      He did a great job and earned his place in the history of our industry.

      RE: Porn - Porn with a storyline worth a damn is not Porn, it's "erotic fiction".

  17. bombastic bob Silver badge


    for those who 'get it' - heh

    1. Solviva

      Re: iddqd


      1. Chz

        Re: iddqd

        And, of course, IDSPISPOPD.

        I actually played Smashing Pumpkins Into Small Piles of Putrid Debris. It was kind of enjoyable, if only for the sound effects. I can't manage to dig up the USENET thread about it, but it was genius.

    2. d3vy

      Re: iddqd


      1. JoshOvki

        Re: iddqd



        1. d3vy

          Re: iddqd


          In my defense.. it's been 20 years since I properly played it :)

  18. Elmer Phud

    Wolfenstein -- the PaintshopPro of the 386 gaming world.

    Everyone seemed to have a copy but no-one ever seems to have bought one.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hurt me plenty

    Ah Doom,

    I remember finishing it in Hurt me plenty level. Took a while but was worth the fun.

    I remember how scary the eyeballs were, those buggers needed to be taken down quick.

    Cheers, ID !

  20. N2

    You got the chainsaw! Find some meat...

    Loved it, played it for hours and still got a version on an iPhone 3.

    idkfa - only when the saw couldnt sort em.

    1. Mooseman Silver badge

      Re: You got the chainsaw! Find some meat...

      I remember talking about Doom with Terry Pratchett, he was of the opinion that if you couldn't finish Doom using just the shotgun you weren't a real player. The chainsaw was a giggle though.

      1. Antonius_Prime

        Re: You got the chainsaw! Find some meat...

        One of my favourite non-Discworld quotes from Sir PTerry involved DOOM.

        “Over the centuries, mankind has tried many ways of combating the forces of evil...

        Prayer, fasting, good works and so on.

        Up until Doom, no one seemed to have thought about the double-barrel shotgun.

        Eat leaden death, demon...”

        1. Korev Silver badge

          Re: You got the chainsaw! Find some meat...

          Up until Doom, no one seemed to have thought about the double-barrel shotgun.

          Not one to besmirch the Great Man's memory; but didn't the double barrelled shotgun only appear in Doom 2?

        2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: You got the chainsaw! Find some meat...

          Was Sir Pterry not preceded by Jasper Carrot mole hunting at night with a 12 bore?

          Moles are evil incarnate!!!!

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Unproblematic admins

    Our admins where I worked never had any problems whatsoever with Doom, Quake etc. It might possibly be because they also played. They were a different breed: rather than complaining people used disk space or bandwidth, they realised it was far, far cheaper to buy more disks and more networking. After all, having developers spend one hour to delete files had a real cost far greater than just buying those disks. So during working hours we had a really efficient working environment.

    Then we were merged with a company having more "traditional" admins, who could not understand why we needed so many "goodies." So of course they removed it. So development was slowed. So our deliveries were delayed. And in the end we were reorganised away. The new admins we got were no doubt very happy about that.

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon

      Re: Unproblematic admins

      Totally agree with the original admins here - you adapt to survive, and that includes upgrading your network to cope with p2p gaming sessions run after hours.

  22. Alan Bourke

    I would like to point out that if you want to revisit classic Doom

    then you want to be using Brutal Doom (

  23. Andre Carneiro

    LAN parties

    Oh, how I miss lugging my 486DX and monitor and keyboard and all that malarkey to my mate’s for a LAN party.

    Internet wasn’t as ubiquitous in Portugal back in the day so it was a lot easier and a lot more fun to get all your mates together and plug all the boxes into an Ethernet hub and spend a whole night fragging each other (hur hur) on Quake.

    Man, why am I so *old*?

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Quake 2

    I remember at 5:30pm, almost every night, the shout on the dev floor would be that the "Server is starting up" and we'd have a good hour of mindless Quake 2 deathmatch.

    Good times.

    1. MrMerrymaker

      Re: Quake 2

      Pfft, that was what, four years later? Wrong era! :)

      ... Man, things changed so quick in those days. I was a Quake 1er myself. Liked 2 just fine. Doom I got into after, but it's been enjoyed. Thank god I can appreciate things that aren't the newest shiny

  25. Totally not a Cylon Silver badge

    Best network load tester

    Before the game was patched the chaingun/gatling gun used one network packet per bullet!

    Great way to load test your 10base2 network.

    The joys of a network made of coax cable and t-pieces.....

  26. fedoraman

    Flickering fluorescent lights

    I can't see a flickering fluorescent light now, without getting flashbacks.

    And that door-opening sound? Haunts my dreams, er, nightmares!

    1. Alister

      Re: Flickering fluorescent lights

      And that door-opening sound?


      It's unmistakeable, even after all these years. I was watching a Sci-Fi program recently where I'm pretty sure they ripped off the Doom door opening, and I recognised it straight away.

      The other thing that sticks is the music, I remember downloading the midi files 'cos I liked them so much.

      1. juice Silver badge

        Re: Flickering fluorescent lights

        I'm fairly sure it's a stock sample - I've heard it in several movies and tv-shows, and IIRC, the original X-com/UFO game used it too, at least in the intro movie

    2. DiViDeD

      Re: Flickering fluorescent lights

      that door-opening sound?

      A few years later and a different game (Thief - all that hiding in the shadows and listening out for enemies in the 3D soundscape stuff!):

      A colleague got his hands on the game as soon as it was released, and was in hes "den", playing away and really enjoying the SoundBlaster "real" quadrophonics. He hears a door open and close behind him, scrabbles to the nearest shadow, while mouse looking to see if he was being crept up on by a nasty. Phew! Nothing there.

      Just as he recovered his nerve, his wife laid her hand on his shoulder and asked if he wanted coffee.

      He reckons that moment still gives him nightmares!

  27. SimonC

    idspispopd master race

  28. RegGuy1 Silver badge


    It was the music that has always impressed me. You take it for granted, but the creativity that went into it is amazing.

    1. MrMerrymaker

      Re: Music

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Music

      I had a graivs ultrasound (remember them) and the sound was awesome

      1. Alister

        Re: Music


        No Contest!

      2. DiViDeD

        Re: Music

        AWE32 for me! Amazing wavetable MIDI!

  29. BinkyTheMagicPaperclip


    First time I played it was co-op at university. We all got to the end of the first shareware episode and screamed as the Barons of Hell ripped us to shreds.

    Playing it again through Brutal Doom reveals that the level design is still decent, and its lasted well. Quake and Quake 2 were decent at the time, but have aged a bit.

    The mods were outstanding, I'm not going to forget the Death Star total conversion in a hurry.

    Of course, then Dark Forces went and did Star Wars far better, and its sequel, Jedi Knight, was better than DOOM in so many ways. However, DOOM pulled all the components together first.

  30. Juillen 1

    I used to be sysadmin for a pretty big ad agency at that point.

    During the normal day, there were so many requests about mapping drives and the like, it wasn't funny. Then came Doom.

    I set up a server, inside its own NT domain, and gave people accounts on it on request. Doom was on a share that came up when office hours ended, and closed at 6am. That's all the info I ever disclosed on that machine to people. No help mapping drive, or swapping domains.

    You'd be amazed at how quickly people learn to map drives when their fun is at stake! :) Never heard a peep about mapping drives after that.

  31. Admiral Grace Hopper

    The Phone Rings

    "Hi there, this is networks. Can you stop firing the f*cking chain gun?"

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The Phone Rings

      Sure, I'll stop firing the chain gun, as soon as this bastard dies!

      1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

        Re: The Phone Rings

        I didn't really like the chain gun. I preferred to pick enemies off with the shotgun and use the rocket launcher on big groups. With the odd bit of chainsaw action when you got to knife-figthing range.

  32. phuzz Silver badge


    What's always impressed me about DOOM is just how far the engine has been pushed.

    It's been run on everything from graphing calculators to a spectrum analyser. The engine itself has been ported and expanded to the point where people are still making mods for DOOM, but they look like this.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Speaking for myself

    Never abused the company network. (it was Token Ring, mind you)

    Never played during company time.

    However, I did buy an extra long serial cable. And a colleague and I slid two workstations (IBM PS/2 if memory serves me right) closer to each other such that the cable would reach between the two.

    And we'd have a game after the rest of the workforce had left.

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon

      Re: Speaking for myself

      "(it was Token Ring, mind you)"

      So, more of an Ultima - Underworld kind of network then? -->

  34. Nezumi

    Bought the original shareware release

    On 3.5 inch floppy in a flimsy cardboard box. Installed it on a VLB 486DX33 clocked at 40 with a Conner (remember them?) 170MB HDD. It stayed on the drive for a long time. Good times!

  35. slack

    I was working on a ship back in '94 or so when I got my hands on a copy of Doom.

    It took about a week until the IT guy and I were blasting away at each other, another for the bridge to get on board during their down times . After that the black gang and anybody else with access to a computer was fighting the good fight whenever they could. Happy, happy days and nights.

    Agree with the above comment -- it was the sound and music that really iced the cake.

  36. Valarian


    DOOM did give me the occasional brown-trouser moment (though not as badly as Dungeon Master on the Atari ST) but it also gave me one of my most enduring laughs that still makes me snicker today when I think about it.

    Multiplayer via modem in about 96ish, me and a mate are death-matching one night on some new PD levels we'd got hold of. We were pretty evenly matched and knew the stock maps backwards, so the only way we could really get the drop on each other was to use downloaded DEU-created maps we hadn't played enough to learn by heart. I find this room with a high ceiling and a central pillar that recesses up into it, and a switch. Hit the switch, down comes the pillar, and there's an armour power-up tucked on top. Nice.

    Hmm. Does that pillar go up again? Click. Ah, yes, it does. Click. Down it comes, click, run-jump, and now I'm on the pillar heading upwards. Oh, I wonder if there's space in the ceiling cavity for me... yes there is. I sit tight, and wait.

    About 10 minutes later, my mate finds the same room. Sees the pillar, and the switch. Click.

    Down I come, stock-still, looking just like a static Marine model. I look at my mate all the way down, and he looks at me, wondering why there's a Marine model hidden on this pillar.

    Then I BFG the smegger. His only response: "You slag". I laughed myself sick.

    It's making me giggle even now.

    1. juice Silver badge

      Re: Patience

      Back in uni around 1995, and some students had managed to get a bunch of games into a hidden directory on the network, including Doom.

      A friend stumbled across this somehow, and so we ended up sat in one of the computer rooms one evening, frantically zooming through Doom in cooperative mode.

      Well. Semi-cooperative; we spent more time shooting each other than the enemies. But it all worked reasonably well, until we got to the Cyberdemon and exhausted all the rockets on each other.

      At which point, we were left with an angry Cyberdemon and no way to take him down.

      Eventually, I think we plinked him to death with our handguns - you got a free clip of ammo every time you respawned. But one of my funniest moments in video gaming came when my friend ran out of ammo and decided to leg it up to the cyberdemon and started punching it's knee.

      At the time, it was merrily blasting away at me; when I ran out of bullets, it turned around, noticed this little thing buzzing around its knees, and lowered it's rocket launcher. And shortly, little bits of Doom Guy softly pattered down from the sky.

      A proper cartoon-comedy moment :)

      One other (and rarely mentioned) feature of Doom was that if an enemy was hit by a stray round from another enemy, the two enemies would then fight to the death, until/unless they saw you.

      IIRC, Doom II had a fun level, which was essentially just a room with a Cyberdemon in it, surrounded by Barons. When you stuck your head around the door, the Cyberdemon would take a pot shot at you and hit the barons, which would then trigger a massive brawl; all you had to do was sit and watch while they tore each other to shreds...

      So something of a precursor to the "Mass battle simulator" game on steam...

      1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

        Re: Patience

        I'd forgotten the friendly fire thing. You could sometimes run through a room full of those fireball chucking demons and then out the other side - and go off to kill some other stuff. Then most of them would have killed each other by the time you got back.

  37. juice Silver badge

    Quake vs Doom

    "Doom [...] allowed players to modify their levels and to build new ones. This [...] coupled with networked deathmatches, helped to build a loyal – some might say obsessive – fan base that inspired people to acquire some important technology skills."

    Allegedly (I'd have to hunt to dig the forum posts out), iD initially pushed back on people producing mods, until they realised how much of a selling point it was.

    TBH, I'd guess that it was the success of Wolfenstein's *secondary* revenue streams (expansion packs, sequels (Spear of Destiny) and engine licencing (Blake Stone)) which convinced iD to completely separate code from content when it came to producing Doom; engine licencing in particular was very lucrative for them, all the way up to the Doom 3 era.

    The fact that this approach naturally lent itself to amateur mod-making was a fortuitous coincidence.

    (You also have to wonder how much of Doom's design philosophy was an artefact of the platform it was designed for; if nothing else, Doom was also one of the first games to expose "tuning" options to end-users, to account for that fact that PCs at the time had a wide range of memory, CPU, video and audio options; later, Quake took things a step further by offering a built-in console to allow direct manipulation of the game engine)

    "Doom's developers released the follow-up Quake franchise [...] While it outsold Doom many times over – in part due to the mass adoption of PCs in the home [...] it never quite had the impact of the original."

    True to a degree - Doom is perhaps just as much of a cultural icon as Pacman or Mario. But Quake arguably had a much bigger indirect impact on both computer technology and the games industry; it drove the early adoption of 3D accelerators and internet-based multiplayer games. And its realistic physics engine gave birth to some other interesting developments, such as rocket-jumps. And it begat a little game called Half Life, too...

    Either way, they're both iconic games, and iD has definitely earnt it's place in video game history.

    1. BinkyTheMagicPaperclip

      Re: Quake vs Doom

      You're not wrong, although Quake 2 is the one that really drove accelerator sales as it wouldn't work without one. Comparatively few people downloaded GLQuake, Tomb Raider probably did more on that behalf as it was re-released and bundled with various cards that supported it (from Glide through to S3)

      ID's id Tech engines have been pretty consistently popular, although id Tech 3 is probably the most popular one.

      1. juice Silver badge

        Re: Quake vs Doom

        > You're not wrong, although Quake 2 is the one that really drove accelerator sales as it wouldn't work without one. Comparatively few people downloaded GLQuake, Tomb Raider probably did more on that behalf as it was re-released and bundled with various cards that supported it (from Glide through to S3)

        Aye - Quake definitely got the ball rolling though - I can remember when a friend bought a 3dfx card for his PC. I was relatively unimpressed at the time; to my inexperienced eyes, it just seemed to tweak the lighting effects and make the textures blurrier ;)

        And yeah, as you said, games like Tombraider and Wipeout 2097 helped to make 3d acceleration more mainstream. As well as some other applications - I can remember bedazzling a friend by running UltraHLE (N64 emulator) on a 3d Labs Permidia graphics card, thanks to an OpenGL -> Glide wrapper...

        Still, while I haven't got any actual sales-figures for the time, I'd guess that GLQuake increased the relative 3d-accelerator market size from 1 to 100, and in doing so paved the way for these later games to push things up to 1000; it was that initial hundred-fold boost (combined with a drop in memory prices) which set up the economies of scale needed to further increase the market ten-fold.

  38. Anonymous South African Coward Silver badge

    Flickering lights in dark buildings also give me flashbacks.

    Most especially if it is our server room (no windows) so if the lights start to flicker, I start scanning for imps etc... :)

  39. Rabster

    I still play sometimes today with There are a few other good ports around.

  40. Clive Galway

    Fun anecdote

    OK, so this was for Quake, not Doom, but whatevs.

    At the time, I was working for a games company, and we had just "headhunted" a new games producer (From Disney).

    So after-hours, we are all playing LAN Quake and she wanders up behind me...

    Her: "So what's this?"

    Me (Giving her the "What rock have you been living under?" look): "Quake"

    Her: "So What's the objective?"

    Me: "You shoot each other"

    Her: "So once you have shot someone once, what's the motivation for shooting them again?"

    Me: *Blam* "That was my boss that I just blasted with a shotgun - I could do this all day"

    1. The-W

      Re: Fun anecdote


  41. Nick Pettefar

    Back in the 90s I had four kids and worked at the Beeb in Cardiff. My teacher dad was looking for PCs for hs RE department but they had 0 IT budget. My boss said I could help myself to the old PCs in the BBC “obsolete” room. After finding my way through the labyrinthine building across the road from the HQ I found a large room absolutely stuffed with previous generation and earlier tech. From 386 PCs to Laser printers requiring powdered toner to some quite good two-year old machines. I kitted my dad’s RE department out so the kids could now learn RE using the latest interactive digital CDs and could also print stuff out; they were the envy of the school! I also took some of the good PCs for myself too and made a networked PC gaming room at home using BNC Coax Ethernet. I fondly remember being thrashed by sometimes all four kids at Doom and then later on Age Of Empires. Happy times.

  42. Peter2 Silver badge

    Doom? Half the computers couldn't play it, and needed those newfangled network cards and a decent network.

    Scorched Earth was where all the action was at. 10 players on the same computer negating the network problems, all aiming their tanks and then tossing badly aimed ordnance around only to miss as the wind altered slightly, and then giving up and blowing away the land under the opposing tank, hitting the ground above with napalm or earth, or just tossing the dangerously unpredictable funky bombs into the general area.

    When upgrading with heavy shields and parachutes I have vague recollections of ending up with games where there was literally no earth left after a few minutes with everybody sitting on the ground on the same level. Which was dangerous as it was then a bit hard to miss...

    1. juice Silver badge

      Scorched Earth? Howzabout...


      Same principle, but on the Sega Saturn, which meant that you could get a large group of mates around a huge (for the time) 32" CRT for some explosive action.

      Better yet, it supported the Saturn multi-tap, which meant you could have up to 8 players, each with their own pad.

      And to forge another link back to this article: Deathtank was an easter egg buried on the Duke Nukem game: and to unlock it, you had to have a Quake savegame stored on your Saturn...

      1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

        Re: Scorched Earth? Howzabout...

        Duke Nukem. "Ahhhh, I needed that!"

        I never really liked Quake for some reason. Having loved Wolfenstein and then Doom, Duke Nukem was the next FPS game that I liked. But the same friend who had that, also had TIE Fighter - and that was a rabbit hole I fell down for many happy hours.

  43. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Romero games' SIGIL

    I'm actually surprised no-one mentioned Romero games is soon releasing SIGIL, a megawad for the original DOOM 1993.

    Looks badass. Time to re-install Doom's binaries !

  44. oilyfishhead

    Barney Doom

    My favorite was the Barney the Purple Dinosaur patch. I loved blasting that thing.

  45. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ah, the memories...

    I actually built my first network from scratch so that I could play Doom with my flatmates.

    Our IT department had many after-hours Doom and Quake deathmatches. We also had one egregiously powerful server (Compaq Proliant 5000 - a Quad 200 MHz Pentium Pro!!!) that had virtually no CPU utilization outside of business hours and wound up hosting Quake in the evenings...

  46. EnviableOne Silver badge


    id's game engines were and still are the gold standard, but nothing beats walking through walls

  47. adam payne

    Ultra violence mode still weeding out the men from the boys.






  48. TheGriz

    LAN Party Doom

    Myself and my friends would all bring our PCs, including huge 21'' CRTs to a designated "host house" and hook up and play Doom "Kill Everyone" matches for hours upon hours, until like 3 or 4am. It was insane. The best memory I have, is during one of these matches, we played the same map for so long, the game itself decided it was time for a full reboot. Doom would leave player bodies on the floor were they were killed, and as such we killed each other so much that the game was having to draw and re-draw this literal multitude of bodies, that the game actually started to buckle under the strain, and would start stuttering on everyone's PC. We finally had to end the match and restart a new map, just so we could keep playing. In that particular PVP map, the BFG 9000 was located in a completely dark room, and the only way you knew anyone was in there waiting for you, was when the BFG went off and killed everyone trying to stream into the room to kill the guy lucky enough to get to the gun first. Thank goodness ID accounted for this and the BFG would only give you 3 rounds of ammo, once the guy was out of ammo, then it was a free for all to see who could survive until the BFG re-spawned. LOL

    Another great moment was when you would see a PVP opponent running across flat open outside ground and you could poke your rocket launcher out a window and lead them just right as they ran and watched the rocket contrail home in on him and blow him to smithereens.

    Good times, good times!

  49. Schultz

    The great thing about Doom was...

    That is allowed you to turn and jump sidewards with most arbitrary speed (well, as fast as that mouse with a solid, heavy metal ball could move). Shoot, jump aside, turn, shoot again, ... If you were close enough to your opponent you could get out of their field of vision to deliver that chainsaw damage :). Nice memories.

    1. TonyJ Silver badge

      Re: The great thing about Doom was...

      "...That is allowed you to turn and jump sidewards with most arbitrary speed (well, as fast as that mouse with a solid, heavy metal ball could move). .."

      I'm pretty sure that the original DOS-based DooM had no mouse support.

  50. Bruce Ordway

    users immediately took up valuable network resources

    I remember the day Doom arrived at one site.

    I was working for a small company, still using older 10BT hubs.

    Word was going around that the network was slow.

    First thing I noticed was activity LEDs on some ports were constantly lit up.

    When I checked one of the cubicles, discovered my first Doom player.

    Turned out the whole department was playing, including their manager.

    Initial result was the release the first company policy by senior management related to computer use.

    Eventually, also upgraded to a 100BT switch.

  51. Chairman of the Bored

    Doom, f**k yeah!

    I think if I were to look back on my grades in grad school there was a noticable dip when Doom came out.

    I think the best way to do this was turn off the music background in the game and put on something totally ironic. Consume some ethanol and then play Moody Blues' "Tuesday Afternoon" while blowing things away. The overall effect is very strange. In a good way.

  52. davidp231

    Kill it!

    First time I played it, was with two of my brothers watching. Armed with IDKFA, I get to E1M8 for the first time. Ride the lift up to the Bruiser Brothers areana and the doors open.

    "Quick pull out something that will kill it!"


    I brought up the chainsaw.

    Happy times.. made even happier since discovering Zandronum and the Brutal Doom mod.

  53. ozfoggy

    Ah the days, squatting a good BFG shot away from an open field spawn point just waiting for the start of that green/yellow pixelated cloud to form so you could blow away your co-worker before they even spawned. Especially enjoyable if they're sitting right next to you in the office and they keep spawning in the same spot. Tantrums galore.

    1. aje21

      Except for when you do a long range BFG shot just before being killed and respawn where your shot lands and you end up fragging yourself. Happened just the once but, boy, it was annoying (and very funny for everyone else).

  54. Snar


    First game I really got into. I ran it on a Compaq luggable DX2/66 machine with an EISA backplane and a Sportster 14/400 MODEM.

    IDDQD / IDKFA :)

  55. aje21

    It was the lighting that made the difference

    While there have been a few comments about flickering lights, for me the difference was that Wolfenstein 3D was all brightly lit whereas Doom had dark corridors, rooms, etc. and that made it seem so much more real. First game I've ever seen where people would duck out of the way of incoming fireballs...

  56. random mathematician

    I am reliably informed that (and for legal reasons will maintain that I in no way have ever actually done) playing Doom in god mode with clipping off, just using the chainsaw whilst off your tits on acid is a really interesting experience.

  57. Paul 87

    Doom was what started me on learning IT skills. From hacking a monochrome screen 386 work laptop to run the shareware version, to getting my parents to buy a top of the line PC where I eventually cut my teeth learning to install and configure Windows after installing OS/2 by accident.

    The level creator, especially for Doom 2, was a big influence in trying to understand just how computers worked, as much as it was having to auto-compress files to save HDD space via batch scripts or reconfigure config.sys and autoexec.bat after games like System Shock and Dark Forces with their more demanding profiles

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      As you've brought up the topic of OS/2 then I feel entitled to re-open "OS-wars" and deal with the comment in the article

      "Presumably if you spent all day trying to slap a GUI interface onto Windows 3.0 ..."

      ... ermm - Windows 3.0 was a GUI that was slapped onto MS-DOS - it wasn't a proper OS like OS/2.

      Thank you, I feel better for saying that!

    2. Sir Runcible Spoon

      I seem to recall having numerous different autoexec and config sys files depending on the game that needed to be run, along with a menu that allowed me to select which set I wanted :)

      All thanks to that visionary luminary who said that 640k should be enough for anyone.

  58. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    We used DOOM demo mode running on an FPGA as one of the standard tests during the design of one of our processors .... and one of the obscure bugs that it found was always referred to as the "Doom bug" (a previous design via a similar process had encoutnered "the Gimp bug").

    Also, a few years earlier when a group had been spun-off to develop "multimedia processors" and the marketeers had decided that they all needed Apple Newton's to understand the "mobile computing market" then the engineers decided in repsonse that they needed to understand the "multimedia gaming market" so installed a Doom network in the lunch room!

  59. The-W

    Did you know the "ID" as in "ID Software" is pronounced "hid Software" and not "eye dee Software"

  60. Moog42

    Map my brain...

    I spend days upon days playing this and W3D, I'm convinced it helps develop much better cognitive skills for mapping - once you've remembered level after level of these maps, day after day, getting round your average city seems so much easier :)

  61. mark l 2 Silver badge

    I was still using my Amiga back when Doom came out on the PC and it was said because of the way the Amiga handled graphics Doom couldn't be ported to the Amiga as it would be too slow.

    Dispute that we did get a few Doom inspired clones (Gloom, Fears, Alien Breed 3d plus other) which would work on a stock Amiga A1200 in a 1/2 sized window and some of them were actually pretty good.

    Ports of the official version of Doom did eventually arrive on the Amiga when ID released the source code a few years later. I remember the cover disks of the Amiga magazines having a different port nearly every month and that was my first experience of Doom, I actually bought the PC version to copy the WAD files onto the Amiga to be able to play the full game rather than just the shareware levels.

  62. Big_Boomer

    I ran W3D on a 20Mhz 286 (MSDOS 6.22 & WfW3.11) that I had chip upgraded (yes, before Memory Modules) to 4Mb RAM. A friend gave me a hacked version of EMM386 called EMM286 that allowed it to access that RAM. W3D ran fine and it would run Doom, but only if you were willing to put up with pauses every so often (and frequent crashes). Replaced it with a 486sx25 (W95) that ran Doom fine and many many hours of fun were had running lan games over a 10base2 network. I remember running GodMode and bouncing all over the place by firing the rocket launcher at my feet <LOL>. Better yet was when the console version of Doom was released and the inevitable bloodbath as the crappy console controllers were no match for seasoned Doomers using keyboard and mouse,.... or was that Quake,.... damn getting old sux! :-)

  63. John Smith 8

    Is this BBC Click online???

    I expected higher standards than parts of the article. It's like when watching a BBC tech program use "internet" and "web" interchangeably....

    Doom didn't run online. It ran on lans. I'm unsure if any other university networks could run it between other unis on JANET, but it did not run online.

    First online 3d Shooter was pretty much Quakeworld, a mutation of quake for online. First official was Quake 2. Unreal Tournament made it playable on the likes of ISDN lines, and even modems.

    But Doom, for all its historical value, didn't play online.

  64. HandlesRUs


    I remember our network admin coming to me and asking "What's this .WAD file? It's eating a lot of bandwidth on the network." ...the first level from the shareware version.

  65. ukgnome

    My Fave level is...

    Well it's actually Grimsby Towns old precinct shopping centre. You see one of my mates was handy with all that fiddly programming malarky.

    He painstakingly created our town centre shopping area to such a detail that you could tell which shop was Wimpy, which one was Boots. Truly inspiring.

  66. sgrier23


    Doom is a classic game. I was a junior IT support engineer in 1993 at a Further Education College. At the end of the day we disconnected our PC's (Windows 3.1) from the LAN (Netware 3.1) and play the network unsafe version of Doom.

    But one day - We didn't disconnect the main LAN connection to the rest of the network...

    20 minutes into the game, we got a frantic telephone call. The person on the other end of the line was the head of the Computer Studies department shouting down the line that his internet connection was very slow. We had a 128KByte Leased Line connection. He read out the MAC access of the PC which was "hogging the internet." We looked at the MAC address and realized it was the first one which was on the small network.

    "We'll look into it" I said in a serious, IT service type voice.

    "How long will it take to fix?" He asked.

    ""A few minutes, we'll need to find the PC and see what it's doing. It may be a student downloading work." I said.

    "Okay..." he said.

    We quickly disconnected the LAN cable, and waited a few minutes. I called him back and asked him to test it, he said it was okay now and thanked us.

    Following that, we got a RED 10BaseT cable and made sure it was disconnected before we plugged in Doom.

  67. RockBurner

    First encountered Doom at uni where 2 mates had serial connected their 386s through the windows of their hall. (they happened to be aligned vertically which was handy). In each room there'd be ten students watching the action and taking turns. Obviously the lights would be off and everone was tuned into the paranoia, so the entire room would dodge left or right in complete synchronisation as the rockets arrived!

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