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I'm Doomed... Tim 
Posted by: Tim at 5:57 PM EST on 7/1/2003
File Under: Games

Would you believe me if I told you that Doom could stress out a modern PC? You better, because it's true. Yes, the old FPS that once ran perfectly on my 386/DX33 with 4MB of RAM now taxes my (somewhat shitty) P3 800 Mhz with 128MB of RAM and a GeForce 256. How is that possible? Well, it's not QUITE the same Doom you're used to. In fact, it's been updated so much that it rivals many games that are commercially released these days.

Anyway, what I'm talking about are the various OpenGL updates of Doom that have been created by the fan community. iD software released the source code for the original Doom engine several years ago, and ever since, fans of the game have been hard at work making the game even better than ever.

Right now, my favorite port is JDoom, but Doom Legacy and ZDoom are also available. Basically, these three bits of software are Windows ports of the old DOS version, which support OpenGL for hardware acceleration and much higher display resolutions, online play via TCP/IP, and (my favorite feature) native mouselook support, meaning the modern style of play using WASD to move and the mouse to aim replaces the old, clunky keyboard-only style.

Anyway, as far as JDoom goes, there are some awesome features to the game, the best of which is the ability to use 3D models to replace virtually every sprite in the game. Add to that the hi-res textures and skins that have been created, dynamic lighting, and even particle effects, and you have one damn fine looking game.

Below are some screenshots of the game in action, with many of the special features in use. I have the hi-res environment textures and some dynamic lighting turned on, as well as all the 3D models. Hi-res enemy skins aren't on, though. They made my poor computer start to crawl.

Click to enlarge

Drop by New Doom to keep up to date on all the developments in the Doom community, and be sure to drop by their forums. There are some fantastic mods to download around there. Oh, and if anyone is up for some co-op or deathmatch online play, drop me a line!
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