Mars Retracts: Original Doom 3 On Sale Again



In happier news, Bethesda’s vexing, mod-screwing decision to remove the original Doom 3 and its expansion from Steam following the release of the confusingly pointless BFG Edition has been reversed. So, you can now lay hands on id’s divisive (putting it mildly) 2004 shooter once again, which must be great news for projects such as Thief recreation The Dark Mod.

Assorted flavours of Doom 3 are currently discounted too – it’s only £6 for the original base game, or £8 for the complete pack.

Good on Bethesda for doing the right thing here. While I appreciate that they want to make money from id, especially after Rage didn’t set the world alight, it seems hard to find a reason why the original Doom 3 being on sale as well as BFG would have harmed them. Now, we are free to choose which version of an over-long, often boring shooter we buy. Hooray!


  1. Rhuhuhuhu says:

    For a long time, I shared your believes that Doom 3 is quite poor. But in retrospect, I would advice people to listen to Yahtzee, who makes a great argument about it: link to

    So, to recap, it does not hold a candle to the greatness of Doom I and II, but it’s still a lot better then most modern landfill.

    • Low Life says:

      Then again, it’s quite telling if “at least it’s better than these shitty games” is all the game’s got going for it. But we all know that’s not the case for Doom 3, don’t we? ;)

      I did enjoy Doom 3 back in the day, and I’ve never quite understood the (almost universal) dislike for it. I especially liked the way they handled darkness in the game, even if the whole flashlight thing didn’t really make any sense. I haven’t played it again afterwards, though, and watching some videos of it on Youtube it does seem quite dated. Or at least something I might not enjoy that much at this point.

      • boe2 says:

        I have to agree. The flashlight switching didn’t make sense but did greatly add to the scary gameplay. I think it’s a pity they “fixed” it in the BFG edition.

        • El_Emmental says:

          I think they should have provided lanterns (the heavy box with a big reflector on the side) rather than a flashlight, and allowing people to use a pistol with the lantern (with reduced accuracy since it’s one-handed shooting).

          It would have made more sense: can’t hold together or duct tape a big lantern on a shotgun, the batteries can last for a quite a long time, clear long-range cone of light, etc.

          Maybe even allow the player to put the lantern on the ground, to light the corridor while he’s waiting for the monsters to show up (with a long-range pick-up ability, and spare lanterns on each levels if you forgot or lost it).

          And lanterns are often found in “horror in space/futuristic labs”, carried by maintenance workers. Flashlight are more a 21st century thing, carried by security guard/police forces, while weapon mounted lights are a thing for the SWAT or soldiers (but since the Doom 3 Guy is scavenging ammunitions and equipment along the way, it is unlikely he would have such equipment right from the start).

      • thecat17 says:

        It definitely didn’t make sense in real-world logic, but it proved to be a lot of fun for me. I like shooting at zombies and imps in chokingly oppressive darkness, only relying on muzzle flashes and the subtle glow of their eyes to make sure I came out in one piece. It’s a game mechanic I hadn’t played with before.

        Although I have to admit, I did feel it was a bit overlong somewhere between the 666th corridor and the surprise visit to flameville. I even stopped playing for a few months by that point. Not sure why I dove back in, I do remember hearing about how awesome flameville was. And yes, it was even better than I expected.

        Much more flameville in Doom 4, I’m crossing with all my fingers.

        I had a lot of fun, and I’m glad I went and finished it. Even in spite of the terrible, terrible ending. I’ll probably even play Resurrection of Evil once Doom 4’s about to come out of its hellhole.

      • somnolentsurfer says:

        I think the dislike had something to do with the fact that, about three weeks after it came out, the preload started for Half Life 2.

    • Dervish says:

      Doom 3 is the worst of both worlds. It doesn’t have the spectacle of modern highly-scripted FPSes and it doesn’t have the speed, challenge, exploration, enemy variety or anything that made older FPSes interesting. It’s just kinda boring. You walk around narrow corridors and blast enemies as they pop out in ones and twos.

    • Turkey says:

      At least they got to make their own terrible re-imagining of Doom as a modern shooter before the publisher who will eventually chew them up and spit them out gets to.

  2. MDefender says:

    Good thing the PC version has returned to the PC, at least.

  3. Echo Black says:

    I find myself going back and finishing Doom 3 again once a year or so, which is more than can be said for most games with me. It’s a very polished shooter that excelled at what it was going for.

    Whether it’s as good/important as the classic Doom titles (it isn’t) is a whole different bag, but I still defend it’s one of the best _corridor_ shooters ever made.

    • Gurrah says:

      I haven’t played it in a long time but for me it still is one of the best and atmospheric corridor-shooters there are. id have knack for building those claustrophobic, industrial, corrdior-heavy levels and I’ve never again seen so much beautiful high-tech machinery embedded in the levels as in Doom 3 (well maybe in Quake 4 also). Sure, they don’t set the world on fire with new ideas, but the games always look fantastic (truer as ever for RAGE), especially the attention to detail in the level-design is astounding.

    • Caiman says:

      I thought it was an excellent update of the Doom formula, only let down by the lack of enemies. I always thought it was odd that it was criticised so heavily for things like monster closets and basic “find the key” objectives when that’s exactly what characterised the originals so well. It was always a case of “something really nasty is going to happen when I pick up that object”, and the fun was dealing with it. Some might say the FPS has “moved on”, but when I look at most modern FPS games I really don’t think that’s a good thing.

    • SuperNashwanPower says:

      I loved it too. Have played it more times than I remember, even on Nightmare mode. Was one of my absolute favourite games and have always been totally dumbfounded by the negativity around it. That said, I had only just recently come back to gaming after years out, my previous experience being Amiga 500’s. I sort of went Half Life 1, Far Cry, Doom 3, Half Life 2 in quick succession. Ahhh themz were the days.

    • haradaya says:

      I enjoyed it for the same reason I enjoyed the first Dead Space. All alone exploring a dark spaceship/mining facility, the machinery still living despite being devoid of humans. I particularly liked when they gave the machines some background info on what they were for. It added to the atmosphere.

  4. Dowson says:

    I suppose someone pointed out the fact that removing the legitimate way to get the game would result in people just pirating it, and ending up giving Bethesda money for neither the BFG or original.

  5. Zanchito says:

    Good news. Nice to see some sense out there.

  6. thomashanauer says:

    I think this may be region restricted, as I’m from America and nor the US nor the BR site are showing any discount.

    • thomashanauer says:

      Altough when Alec says ‘discounted’ might just be a price drop.

      • El_Emmental says:

        It is a price drop, it went from $19.99 to $9.99 (19.99€ to 9.99€ in Europe tier 1), as you can see here:

        link to

        (see the “Price and sales chart” part)

        It’s a good thing if you want to grab a discounted license during a Steam sale later, now it will be $2.5€ (-75%), $1€ (-90%).

  7. mrmalodor says:

    Was it really so hard to just make the BFG edition mod-compatible?

    • GallonOfAlan says:

      Maybe not ‘hard’ – but there would be work involved, and why bother when they have one on the shelf they can just re-issue?

    • El_Emmental says:

      But then the modders would have to make their previously-working mods compatible with Doom 3 BFG (since they changed quite a few things in the code, “making compatible” isn’t an easy task that id could do for all mods).

      Then people would have to own both the original Doom 3 and the Doom 3 BFG Edition to play all mods with their latest versions, since some old mods won’t be updated, and some will have the chance to be “BFG fixed”.

      Then modders would have to update both versions, to make sure everyone can play their mod.

      Then multiplayer mods would face some serious issues with a divided community (or serious technical challenges to make the two Doom 3 run on the same server).

  8. BrendanJB says:

    I must be one of the few people who really enjoyed Doom 3; and the fact that you had to switch between your weapon and a flashlight. It didn’t really feel like a Doom game, but I liked that game quite a bit. Not sure if I’ll give the BFG version a shot or not. Maybe if the price is right.

  9. Squishpoke says:

    What I never understood was why a lot of people were unimpressed with Doom 3, and then several years later Dead Space came out to much praise. Dead Space is almost a straight-up copy of Doom 3 in some respects.

  10. derbefrier says:

    Hey that reminds me, I need to give this dark mod thing a go. At least now I don’t have to pirate it. Would be fun to go back through doom 3 again too.

  11. Cytrom says:

    Thats nice… on a completely unrelated note, can we have GTA Vice City back too?

    • mrmalodor says:

      And Ghost Busters. They removed it just days before I decided to buy it.

      • buzzmong says:

        You’re not really missing anything with Ghostbusters. Some neat concepts and some lovely art assets and level design, but gameplay was a bit lacking and near the end there isn’t a ramp up in difficulty per se, just a number of walls you end up butting your head against and relying on luck to get past.

        • SkittleDiddler says:

          You’re spot on detailing the technical shortcomings of the game, but it has enough charm to carry itself through. I really liked the art style too.

  12. DickSocrates says:

    Every time I think “hmmm, perhaps I should try Doom 3 again” I just think of Brutal Doom or Quake 1. There’s just no reason to play it. It did do some atmospheric stuff really well and it does have a distinct feel about it, but the game itself is p-poor.

  13. Cooper says:

    I still prefer Quake 4

    • LionsPhil says:

      Yeah. I actually quite liked 4.

      It particularly impressed me that all the guns still felt punchy and useful toward the end; having the superweapons didn’t stop the workaday assault rifle being used, and not just due to ammo shortages.

  14. Inimitable says:

    The Dark Mod isn’t a re-creation of Thief!

    It’s also working towards becoming a completely standalone product, so hopefully Doom3 won’t be needed for too much longer. :)

  15. SuperNashwanPower says:

    That monster looks like its made of rock.
    Somewhere in the background, a man is reading The Times. A quality paper.
    And there’s a shotgun.