DOOM Eternal has been delayed, but that doesn’t mean the hype train has come to a halt. Here are six new things about the game that we discovered during a recent hands-on event.

DOOM Eternal was delayed late last year, but we’re quickly approaching the game’s new and sparkling March 2020 release date, and Carli Veloce, one of our gaming editors, recently got the chance to witness the carnage firsthand during a preview event.

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DOOM’s formula is timeless; famed for high-octane strafing, vicious demon-slaying, and oceans of gore, the first-person shooter scoured the depths for new ways to amp up the slaughter.

1. Resource management: Diversifying the tools of the trade

Hugo Martin, the game’s creative director, emphasized that one of the most significant modifications to Doom Eternal was the addition of “aggressive resource management.” It sounds metal and nerdy at the same time, and isn’t that what Doom is all about?

Regardless, unless you’re a lover of RPGs or open-world games, or you produce or write about games, you’re unlikely to be familiar with the concept of resource management. For the uninitiated, this is where inventory management becomes an important component of gameplay. It plays a considerably larger role in RPGs were creating and upgrading are popular, but it appears slightly different in Doom Eternal.

You have to continuously discover ways to replenish your health, ammo, and armor in Doom (2016). This was relatively straightforward because ripping and tearing gave you health and using the chainsaw on enemies gave you ammo. There were other supplies strewn throughout the map. This is still true in Eternal, although the emphasis is on always having enough items. You receive the chainsaw considerably earlier in the game to guarantee you use it frequently, and a new item called the Flame Belch allows you to burn enemies for armor parts. There’s even less stuff laying around, so you have to prioritize how you use the tools you have. It creates a far more delicate balancing act and adds complexity to the gameplay without interfering with the players’ experience. At the very least, it ensures that you will use the chainsaw this time, as I did not.

2. Dash and wall climbing: Improved mobility for the on-the-go Slayer

In Doom (2016), there were essentially two options for movement: running or jumping. You were even doing double jumps at times. This was good until you tried to jump and fell, which was terrible. There are two new ways to move now: the dash and the arrow. You obtain the ability to dash a little later in the game, which is exactly what it sounds like: you can now push a button to sprint swiftly across a specific distance.

3. Enemy weak spots: Find the squishy bits

Another crucial component of Doom? Of course, the adversaries! Doom (2016) thrived in bringing new and more difficult enemies even deep into the game, and Doom Eternal is no exception. Sure, there are a lot more opponents in the beginning (many of which were introduced late in the first Doom), but it gives the potential for even more demons to shred and tear.

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id Software has managed to make the opponents as complex as the resources and puzzles. Many of the enemies now have weak points that you can directly attack. The Cacodemon, for example, can be stunned if a grenade is placed in its mouth, whilst the Revenant’s rocket launchers can be targeted more directly to eliminate its primary attack.

4. Arcade-y elements: Adding a little retro flair to the modern shooter

Doom is a throwback series, thus it’s only natural that it has retro elements. If you thought Doom (2016) was a throwback, you’re in for a treat with Doom Eternal, which is the most arcade-like game I’ve played since going to an arcade. Ammo drops, brilliant hues, and secret exploration have already reminded us, but what about 1UPs? Not just extra lives, but also a flying ball that proclaims 1UP. That’s all there is to it.

5. The hub: Your home away from Hell

The Doom Slayer, often known as Doom Guy, is a straightforward individual. He enjoys ripping and tearing, he’s buff, and he’s uninterested in your plot. The id Software team sought to give Doom Eternal more personality, which is where the Hub comes in.

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The Fortress of Doom (clever) is a place where you can refresh yourself, update parts of your talents, and care for your valuables between levels. Doom Guy gets his own bedroom on the hub where you may not only look at all the small things you’ve accumulated through time but also explore Doom Guy himself. You’ll discover that he’s still a simple man, but he truly enjoys the notion of a flesh guitar.

6. New environments: More varied locations to slaughter demons

Martin stated that one of the most common complaints his team heard about Doom (2016) was that it became repetitious. There are just two sorts of levels in this entry. You’re either in space, walking through corridors, or in hell. However, there are many more in Doom Eternal. You begin in space and are instantly plunged into hell, which is a significant difference from the first game, which takes several hours to reach for the first time. Then there are additional dimensions to discover. A Cultist’s base you visit in the third section is blanketed in snow and, dare I say it, greenery. It’s difficult to predict how varied the landscapes will get, especially given that the campaign is said to last over 22 hours, but it’s a refreshing break, at least for the first few hours.