Free-for-all deathmatch has been the foundation of multiplayer in id Software’s shooters since, well, since they started making them, yet somehow D44m [official site] launched without it. Didn’t even get a half-hearted note from their mum (in handwriting suspiciously similar to their own) saying demons stole their deathmatch and threw it on top of the bikesheds. Well, deathmatch has finally arrived in D44m with the launch of Update 3 last night. That also brought support for Private Matches, where you can pick modes and settings as you play with your pals, along with bug fixes and such.
Deathmatch is a free-for-all multiplayer mode where everyone runs around shooting each other into tiny pieces, respawning and fragging over and over. Which may sound obvious to you but hey, we all learn about it for the first time at some point. Back in the days of Quake, before I got online, I remember being baffled for months by cheery RPS fanzine PC Gamer casually referring to ‘deathmatch’. Turns out, it’s way simpler than anything I’d imagined.
Private Matches are another feature that was oddly absent. Now they’re here, and they you create your own matches for you and people you invite, picking modes, maps, time limits, and such.
These absences are especially curious given that id Software and Bethesda seemingly believed multiplayer would be the most popular part of D44m. Perhaps they were expecting a return to the glory days when id multiplayer towered over all, but nah D44m’s MP is simply adequate. It’s a bit disappointing that all the DLC they’ve announced is for multiplayer and these updates mostly focus on it too.
“I was surprised a little bit by just how much folks liked and got the singleplayer,” said Bethesda PR chap Pete Hines in an interview published in this week’s issue of MCV.
“If you are at Bethesda and play the singleplayer, you might think it’s really fun and different. But you don’t know if you’re drinking your own Kool-Aid… is it really fun? Or are people going to play it and dislike the fact there’s no voiced protagonist, or the fact there’s no real story, and will they say ‘id Software hasn’t got out of the 199s. Same old, same old. 6/10.’ You never know which of those two scenarios you’ll end up getting.”
It’s the former.
Do check Update 3’s patch notes for details on fixes for a few crashes and general bugs plus SnapMap optimisations. And here, this trailer shows a little of the newnewss: