Doom On You? Doom’s New Cinematic Trailer

Y’know how Deadwood characters holler modern rude words so their cussin’ has the same impact on modern audiences as authentic 1870s oaths like “golly gee whillikers!” and “goodness me!” would’ve had on decent folks back in the day? How can/do/will/coulda/woulda/shoulda old game series be updated while keeping that flavour? I have no answer (because there is no one answer) but ask because a new cinematic trailer for this year’s Doom [official site] feels quite wrong in its attempt to bridge past and present, and it’s clearly a problem id have spent years (and years!) trying to get their heads around.

Not quite right, yeah? That thrashin’ song is certainly not a modern big-budget trailer tune but far too new for classic Doom (it’s from 1998 but hell, that sound was big for years after), isn’t it? And the eyemusic flows like an old game cinematic – but also not old enough. It sits uneasily in a space between ye olde Doom and the present day, invoking neither. It’s simply… 2005? This is the same problem facing id Software.

I’m not particularly interested in this trailer, just in a flu-y haze wondering about the approaches and problems of resurrecting a series. You wouldn’t insist Ralph McTell sing Streets of London over and over for 40 years (not you, you’re one of the good ones) and I wouldn’t expect or want id Software to Just Do Another Doom 2. Beyond the demonic dressing, what even is Doom, maaan? What would you want or expect to be carried into a modern-day, big-budget Doom? How would you rework oldbits to have the same impact on modern audiences?

Maybe the demons could hiss “sssstudent debt” and “prrroperty ladderrrhaha” instead of growling and roaring, yeah? Jokes.

We can soon see what id settled on, as Doom is due on Friday the 13th of May. Or you can watch bits of singleplayer gameplay, and the multiplayer closed beta started yesterday so bits of that are all over the place too.

I guess what I’m saying is, if id want to follow the classic Doom soundtrack technique of riffing on contemporary metal hits (they borrowed licks from bands like Metallica, Slayer, Pantera, and Alice in Chains – yeah yeah, I get that one all the time, thanks), then the new Doom tunes should be inspired by Babymetal.

From this site

78 Comments

  1. tigerfort says:

    If I was making a parody trailer for Doom, that would be it.

    • Jerkzilla says:

      Exactly my thoughts. Except I would have had the doom guy do the “throw down, step on and shoot face” to the demons.

  2. gabrielonuris says:

    That babymetal video was equally strange and cute.

    • Alberto says:

      Apparently there’s a whole scene of actually good metal japanese bands with women in / leading them.

      Hope the game is better than their marketing suggests.

    • Premium User Badge

      heretic says:

      I enjoyed the Babymetal video more than the Doom trailer, hm.

    • Jackablade says:

      That’s not terribly metal. I was preparing for something a little more like Arch-Enemy with the deathmetal growls and whatnot.

  3. LegendaryTeeth says:

    Shoulda just gone with a cover of one of the original tracks.

  4. jonfitt says:

    That trailer lacked a lot of kinetics that you’d expect considering the actions taking place. He was doing all the typical cliched action moves (including the three point landing), but would plod along doot-de-do, then scramble scramble, then doot-de-do.

    Also, what happened to that first Imp execution? It looked oddly cut.

  5. Premium User Badge

    Herzog says:

    id lost their mojo over a decade ago. That soundtrack is terrible. Compare this to the original Doom soundtrack, or NIN for Q1 or Rob Zombie for the opening of Q2… Anyways, I will get the GOTY edition with all dlc in a sale in two years from now.

  6. Jokerme says:

    It must be really hard to write a whole article about a trailer.

    • Raoul Duke says:

      This is not directed at RPS in particular, but the gaming media has this weird habit of reporting on advertising material as though it’s news.

      • vlonk says:

        But it is news. Games are media and this is a piece of it. As much as I care for the humble opinion of the RPS staff I also like to take a peak at whats coming up soon.

        Before and after the Vid there are actual some very good human thoughts on the trailer, doom, maturing genres and games in general. Others just blurt out the trailer as a copy pasta. Your critique is valid often times, but does it fit to RPS?

        • Raoul Duke says:

          Oh, there are certainly many (most) sites that are far less discerning than this one.

          But still… the “news” here is not the game coming out, which will be covered separately in what will no doubt be several articles. The “news” is that there’s a trailer, and not even a gameplay trailer but a completely artificial advertisement for the game.

          The people in game company marketing departments must love it. They literally create an ad and then have it republished for free by virtually every major gaming publication. Quite a contrast to the traditional model of paying a publication to show your advertising next to content which is not your advertising. Here we are, talking about their ad.

          It probably comes down to an individual view about whether this trailer itself is newsworthy. In my opinion, it is not. I have similar objections to this type of article in gaming publications as I do to every character “reveal” for other games being covered – these are again marketing exercises by the gaming companies being treated as news, not actual news IMHO.

          Anyway, to be 100% crystal clear I am not for one second suggesting that RPS is doing anything wrong. I am just stating that my personal preference would be to never see another article about a piece of marketing material (other than if it was peculiarly newsworthy in some way), and instead see articles which have an independent subject. In fact, this post with some slight reworking could have been “here’s some thoughts about the upcoming Doom game” with the trailer tacked on at the end.

  7. John O says:

    It’s ages since I last enjoyed that song. Since then, I heard it played at countless parties and clubs and I grew to dislike it more and more. I associate it with drunk dipshits and the smell of stale beer.

    id is only id in name by now. The guys who worked on Doom pretty much all left. It’s a studio owned and assembled by Bethesda working on a name they bought. I wish I could be excited about the game, but i’m not

  8. Eight Rooks says:

    What was that song? It sounds familiar but I can’t find who/what track it was. No argument, though, it’s certainly embarrassing, and I say that as someone who really likes bombastic trailers/the films of Joseph Kosinski (all two of them).

    • eljueta says:

      Refused – New Noise, go listen to the album , The Shape of Punk to Come, thank me later

      • RubberbandAU says:

        I like them, but I just hear a less angry RATM.

        • Premium User Badge

          Angstsmurf says:

          This is incorrect. Refused are Swedish and therefore cool. Just like me, really.

  9. Unknown says:

    Ummm, Refused’s “New Noise” is an anthem for rejecting the old guard in favor of something truly new (“We dance to all the wrong songs/ we’re not leading”). To hear it soundtracking a DOOM sequel in 2016 is incredibly ironic.

    • Greg Wild says:

      heh, yes. I thought that too.

      But on the other hand, Refused, getting exposure. That’s cool I guess.

  10. trashmyego says:

    The multiplayer beta has been an absolute blast. If the campaign is lengthy enough, this is going to be a wonderful thing. Especially if the snapmaps stuff also provides a meaningful extension of things. I feel kind of sick throwing money at Bethesda, but damn if this isn’t something I actually want.

  11. Rednecksith says:

    Yeah, not a very good trailer. The pacing is just way off and it cuts back and forth too much.

  12. PancakeWizard says:

    Ha! I’m seeing Babymetal at Wembley tomorrow.

  13. Mezmorki says:

    That was just awful. I get more excited thinking about playing Doom 3 again. Which is sad because I’ve never played Doom 3 again after the first play.

    • Kaeoschassis says:

      That’s actually a pretty good reason to go re-play it, especially if you still have it on-hand and don’t need to pay for it again anyway. Not, of course, a good Doom game, but quite a fun little thing in its own right.

      • DevilishEggs says:

        I played it twice. The 2x was good. For some reason, that game still had the power to scare me. Several years later and tried again. Ho boy. Bad idea. Like shooting mannequins.

  14. Chorltonwheelie says:

    Who listens to Metal? Nice kids from the countryside.

  15. Ancient Evil says:

    It’s just a trailer, who gives a fuck? People love to over-analyze. I’ll wait until the game comes out before passing judgement.

    Remember the “This Is The New Shit” trailer for Dragon Age? Yeah. Trailers don’t mean anything. (And for the record, I don’t even have a problem with this one.)

  16. forddent says:

    I had never heard of babymetal before today. What a time to be alive.

  17. zaphod42 says:

    I really wanted to like the new Doom, the graphics look pretty cool. But the style is all wrong, the design is all wrong, the controls are all wrong, and the music is all wrong.

    Ugh, its just another COD/Halo knockoff for the brogamers. I’m sad.

    I’m going to go play some Unreal Tournament to get this taste out of my mouth.

    • Distec says:

      Everything I don’t like is for brogamers.

    • Ancient Evil says:

      It’s funny how “Call of Duty” has become a catch-all term for anything someone doesn’t like, rather than, you know, meaning it actually resembles Call of Duty in any significant way.

      Now, the canceled “Doom 4”, before they started over on this version? Might not have been a bad analogy. But I’m really not seeing the CoD or Halo angle with this one other than the basic fact that they’re first-person shooters.

      • Unsheep says:

        Jumping on a bandwagon often entails the adoption of lazy reasoning.

    • DevilishEggs says:

      I do wish it was more bare-faced Doom guy, personality-wise, and less Halo helmet. I know, technically, if you see doom guy from the outside (in deathmatch) he’s wearing a helmet. But having that face in the UI, for singleplayer, made a difference, and so did the little leather gloves he wore for the shotgun and stuff.

  18. Stevostin says:

    Wow, babymetal is awesome.

  19. Monggerel says:

    Holy god damn. That was just plain stilted. You make a CG trailer where the point is to hype your game up as possible and then it ends up looking like trash.

    Does id even have a marketing department?

  20. Unsheep says:

    Who actually buys a game based on a trailer these days though ?
    With streamers and media getting early access videos and demos far earlier than everybody else, trailers have become redundant.
    I don’t really see the point of having them, its a waste of money.

    • Tekrunner says:

      I’ve bought games after reading reviews in paper magazines, playing a demo, following a friend’s recommendation, reading reviews on the interwebs, watching gameplay videos. But never from watching a trailer. Neither these days nor 20 years ago.

  21. Daniel Klein says:

    You want modern metal that would fit a video game? Say no more:

    link to teamrock.com

    • Geebs says:

      The second oddest thing about Babymetal is watching an audience clapping along to blast beats.

    • Eukatheude says:

      Modern metal?
      How is that even metal?

  22. mrt181 says:

    trailers are like commercials, new doom looks nice

  23. JackMultiple says:

    never judged a game by its trailer yet, not gonna start. yeah, I’ll play it.

    • Dominare says:

      Yes, judging games by their trailer is a risky business indeed. Dead Island taught us that.

  24. DanMan says:

    Wow, what a bunch of “get off ma laaawn” die-hards in here. I thought that actually looked decent. I might even consider buying it, even though I planned not to, because D3 was just “meh”.

    The music is fine, if you ask me, and if the action really is that diverse (not just: shoot bullet-sponge alien until it dissolves), then I’m even interested again.

  25. Don Reba says:

    Actually, this would have been pretty excellent if it was real gameplay footage.

    • Don Reba says:

      Now, that came out ambiguous. I mean to say that the game would have been impressive if it looked like this.

  26. aircool says:

    Screamo should have died long ago…

    • ResonanceCascade says:

      That song is from 1998. Also not screamo.

      • banana says:

        Well, those high pitched screams sound very screamish, don’t they?
        Seriously, it seems devs these days don’t know good, groovy and doomish (ha!) metal to properly shoot demons to gibs. Here, try High on Fire (2015): link to youtu.be

  27. zxcasdqwecat says:

    I wish I was a demon and never pay my debts/loans back. Living under someone’s else bed, knocking their shit to the ground when they are not there.

  28. syllopsium says:

    Oh look, it’s passable metal over what appears to mostly be video and not in game gameplay. Remind me what the point of this is?

  29. Pizzzahut says:

    This Doom going to suckarse.

  30. Buzko says:

    Babymetal is fucking fantastic. Delighted to read that RPS likes them. Disappointed that their world tour again won’t come to Australia.

    As for the trailer, I hope the main character’s helmet stays on for the whole game, and we end with a Samus-style reveal.

  31. banana says:

    Ehm, I guess Alice was being sarcastic with that link…
    The real question is however: are you sarcastic with that comment?!

  32. Sattoh says:

    Everyone is blaming for the trailer and the metal song used since they are hardcore fan of Doom but still no one found the intro song in the trailer.Compare them!

    Here link to youtu.be
    and Here: link to youtube.com

  33. MyKeyboardSucks says:

    Oh dear god, what was that babymetal abomination!? My ears!! My beautiful ears! Please someone pass me the liquid nitrogen and a large douche! maybe if i melt away my eardrums my memory of this video will be less traumatic

  34. Assirra says:

    I never heard of Babymetal before and now i am hooked.
    Thanks RPS.

  35. Wadanny says:

    I respect the stance of this opinion piece (and the various references to the changing of the zeitgeist between 1993 and 2016), however I wanted to offer an alternative view as Doom is still my favourite game after 20 years of gaming (makes me feel old!)
    Firstly, the previous trailer showed me all I needed to see, as I had some doubts after the quake-con footage (though loved the brutal doom-esque melee combat!). Daring to dig a little below the surface of this new trailer, there is every chance that it was made much tamer than the previous one so that it can actually be televised and help market the game to fans other than those who only watched the previous one online (it couldn’t be shown on TV for reasons connected with the Baron of Hell performing unnecessary surgery on the Marine). After all there is a reason that media and game companies fight so hard to get a lower age rating on their films and games.
    id are in a bind I do not envy, as they must please both hardcore fans (which, judging by some of the choice wording of earlier comments, seems a tall order indeed) and bring in new ones. Everyone has a ‘Doom’ they want to be made but they can only make one. All I’m saying is don’t let one isolated trailer that isn’t quite what you imagined, shape your expectation for years and years of hard work by a team who might just re-ignite the fires of Hell for all us Doom fans! :-)