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Doom 3: Film Versus Game Analysis

by: Simon Hill ; edited by: Michael Hartman ; updated: 4/17/2012 • Leave a comment

Doom 3 was an excellent game which took the player on a nightmarish journey to Hell via a research facility on Mars. The game was released to widespread success. Doom the movie was a poorly made cash in which altered the plot, failed to capture the spirit of the franchise and deservedly bombed.

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    Game Versus Movie

    Doom 3 was an exciting first-person shooter and it heralded a welcome return for the series which was lapped up by fans and critics alike. Re-imagining the original game it was an action-packed survival horror with similar game-play but drastically updated graphics. With the success of the game and the increasing trend for game to film conversions it became inevitable that a movie version of Doom would be released. Sadly the movie Doom was an absolute turkey which completely failed to capture the spirit of the games and added to the glut of brainless Hollywood action flicks that are churned out every year.

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    Doom 3 was set on a research facility on Mars and scientists made the mistake of opening a gateway to Hell which allowed all manner of creepy demonic creatures to come through and eat them. The player took on the role of a marine sent in to investigate and had to battle through a series of challenging levels, facing down demons and monsters to protect humanity.

    The basic setting was retained for the film but the film makers decided to completely change the plot, so while the main character was still a marine, the threat he faced was a virus outbreak which transformed people into monsters. References to hell were dropped completely in favour of ripping off other storylines from films such as Aliens. The setting and styling of the marines was the only real link between the two.

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    Doom 3 featured a wide array of monsters and demons from lumbering zombies to floating skulls and the evil character of Sarge was a hideous spider like cyborg. In the movie Doom, Sarge is played by grinning former pro-wrestler, The Rock, and he is far removed from the game character. The rest of the enemies that appear in the film are mutated scientists and although there are characters resembling imps and zombies ,as well as a Hell Knight and a Demon their origins are different and the more imaginative creatures from the game series are entirely absent.

    The monsters also lack their attack capabilities and weaponry from the game and prefer to attack hand-to-hand in the film.

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    As a nod to the game there is one sequence which is shot in first-person and this is as close as the movie comes to capturing the spirit of the franchise. The characters in the film are even less engaging than the people you meet in the game and the script is formulaic mush.

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    The BFG does make an appearance in the film but it is woefully underused and the projectile it fires looks completely different from the game version. Other familiar weapons from the games such as the shotgun, chaingun and chainsaw also only make brief appearances in the film.

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    To sum it up, the film Doom was most closely based on the game Doom 3 and visually speaking the setting was quite faithfully recreated. However the characters, creatures, weapons and plot were all altered and consequently the movie tanked at the box office failing to excite the fans it was supposed to attract.

    To put it simply the game was excellent and the film was woefully bad.