Why Doom 3 BFG Edition is a Rip-off and You Shouldn't buy it
In 2012 I read about something called Doom 3 BFG Edition, and I’ll admit, I was a little excited. I was mainly excited because they had finally gotten the logo right. It was now properly Doom 3 and not Doom³ or Doom cubed. It was released later that year and I found myself on the fence about buying the thing. It started retailing locally at about R249 for the PC version, and the price has since come down to R149 and now even R99 on sale, but I still haven’t jumped.
So what exactly is in it that makes it so special? Well, it has a graphically enhanced version of Doom 3; “The Lost Missions” – missions cut from the original game; Resurrection of Evil – the expansion, as well as The Ultimate Doom and Doom II: Hell On Earth. So it makes for quite a good package, right? Wrong, and I’m going to tell you why.
Firstly, the BFG edition touts an HD remake of Doom 3. But after reading online a little, some claim that the original version of Doom 3 looked better – and that’s saying a lot, seeing as I think the original was and is ugly in so many ways. Plus, there’s not a single mod available free of charge on moddb.com for example that couldn’t do a better job of making the game look pretty. And you reportedly can’t even play mods with the BFG edition – and the main reason I bought Doom 3 in the first place was so I could play The Dark Mod.
The BFG edition is also a steamworks title, which as we know means if you buy the retail version of the game in-store, you still have to download half of the content from Steam, which requires a more-than-decent internet connection. The original was released at a time when Steam hadn’t even been launched. It existed in a time when a simple CD key was enough to verify ownership of a game.
I have also played the Resurrection of Evil expansion, and let me tell you, it’s nothing special. It wasn’t even developed by id Software. Even the Lost Missions aren’t that fantastic, so I’ve heard. That’s probably why they were cut from the game in the first place.
As for Doom and Doom II, I’m pretty sure I have those lying around, as well as the Master Levels for Doom II and Final Doom, both of which aren't even included in the package for some reason. Although there is the No Rest for the Living expansion pack for Doom II which was previously on Xbox Live, but Final Doom is a far superior pseudo expansion pack, let me tell you.
So, the only reason, as alluded to in the title of this piece, to buy the BFG edition is if you are a console gamer. Doom 3 was only ever released on PC, Mac and later the original Xbox. This new version is available for Xbox 360 and PS3 in addition to the PC. You can play it with a controller, and on top of that the product boasts less bugs, and finally, you can actually play the game without having to switch between your gun and the flashlight – something which “The Duct Tape Mod” did a long time ago as far as PC gamers are concerned. it also has better sound effects, apparently. But the Enhanced Doom mod released for the game years ago does a good enough job of this, by putting Trent Reznor's – at the time – unreleased audio work in the game. It was much better than the original sound.
So the conclusion is, if you don’t own Doom 3, and you’re a console gamer or one who isn’t overly fond of mods, then it might be worth a try. But if you are a PC gamer, or a religious fanatic who is turned off by evil imagery in their games, there’s little reason to get it, it seems.
I can only wonder though why id Software decided to release this edition now, when people have long since moved on, and have probably forgotten about Doom 3. The Xbox 360 and PS3 both came out more than 7 years ago. Why wait so long? Is it to please their new masters, ZeniMax, who are currently pushing id to get Doom 4 – which has joined Half-Life 3 in development hell/vapourware territory – out of the door? This seems evident as all sequels for the decidedly mediocre Rage were cancelled. Maybe it’s an attempt to resurrect (no pun intended) interest in the franchise again after all went quiet on the Doom 4 front for years, apart from a few bits of leaked media.
Geoffrey Tim over at LazyGamer posed a valid question the other day: “Is id still relevant?”
I could probably write a whole new article on that, but just briefly, I will say that if id Software has stooped to such levels as they have with this frankly lacking BFG edition, if they’ve done anything, it’s join the rest of these development studios out there today that have caved and just decided to go along with the soul crushing duty of churning out whatever their publishers think the gaming community at large wants, even if it is a subpar HD/3D remake (it was all ready 3D anyway, wasn't it?). The id we knew – the longest lasting major independent game development studio in history – is gone, it seems. RIP id.
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© 2013 ANDR01D
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