Back in the day the platformer was king, basking in its divine gory and conveniently ignoring the death throes of the adventure game genre. Companies churned out generic side scrolling run ‘n’ gun after generic side scrolling blaster like there was no tomorrow (remember Halloween Harry? Anybody?). Then Doom came along and filled the genre with a buckshot full of lead, turning it into a fine red mist: the FPS had arrived.
I mean, sure, Doom wasn’t the first first-person shooter, but it just so happened to sit its tainted demonic ass right on top off a major turning point in gaming, opening the world to the FPS as a mainstay; kicking off the death knell of the platformer in the process.
But… what if things were different?
Mini-Doom provides an unerringly good look into an alternative dimension where an early 90’s Doom came out that bit earlier and instead started life as a sidescrolling platformer.
Before Doom, the platformer was still the dominant format for action gaming, whether it was on ground (Duke Nukem, Commander Keen) or in space (Solar Winds, Raptor). Once Doom blew everyone away though, that changed. Why Doom was so instrumental to this is a factor of many things, but you can’t deny timing was one of them.
Each of your favourite soulless horror is pretty much here, recreated in chunky 2D pixels, some faring the transition better than others. Controls are thankfully decently fluid, and come with some modern features like being able to shoot down and up, and the classic Doom sounds are all here to bring you back to a more innocent time full of demons, high powered weapons and exploding barrels.
In Mini-Doom, while I cant say its quite on the same par as Doom (remember when levels actually had a “par time”? -ed), the developers clearly “get” the original game and have done a great job here replicating the look and feel into platformer format. It’s not quite as astounding a re-imagination as DoomRL (which really managed to capture the Doom feeling somehow despite being a turn-based Roguelike), but yes, Mini-Doom basically does feel like what Doom would have been like as a (low budget) platformer by an outfit like Apogee.
Mini-Doom | download