Unto the Evil is the first of three downloadable content packages from the id developed and Bethesda published DOOM.
This first pack focuses on the multiplayer side of the game – a mode that we pointed out is rather lacking compared to the exceptionally enjoyable single player campaign. Bringing a whole heap of shiny new extras to the fight, Unto the Evil includes three new maps – Offering, Cataclysm and Ritual – two new weapons, a new playable Demon, new hack modules, and a raft of customizable items in the form of armour and taunts.
The three new maps are by far and away the best part of Unto the Evil; they are a considerable step up from those that shipped with the base game, offering challenging arenas that are aesthetically interesting.
- Cataclysm is the larger of the three maps and is split into three distinct areas. A futuristic zone (much like the UAC on mars), a hellscape, and an ancient cave system. All three areas share the tone of the single-player campaign, and with the use of portals to move you from area to area it really works as a fun map to play.
- Ritual is an ice-covered wasteland of the Martian polar caps, and is designed with more ledges than you can shake a Demon’s ripped-off arm at. Maximum platforming fun is to be had, Ritual is an extremely well thought out map for games such as death match, where you can lie in wait to ambush unsuspecting victims as they scurry below.
- Offering is the final map, an ancient temple built on a pool of agent energy. Although not as breathtaking in design as Cataclysm or Ritual, it is still more enjoyable than the original maps
Interestingly – and mindful that nothing splits a community faster than paid-for-DLC maps (we’re looking at you before-you-became-free-on-EA-Access-Titanfall) – Bethesda will allow you to play matches on the three new maps even if you haven’t bought the DLC, just as long as the host owns them. A nice touch.
Unto the Evil expands the arsenal with two new weapons; the best of them is the kinetic mine – just drop it and forget about it. As soon as an enemy comes within its range it shoots up and follows the target for a short time until it explodes in all ’round gory fun. Top hint: stick it to a ceiling, people never look up! The second weapon is the UAC EMV Pistol and, just like the pistol in the single player game, it is disappointing. With weak shot power and a secondary charge option that still takes 2 or 3 perfect hits to down an enemy, it’s a bit of a pointless addition to the game, and one that will more than likely be forgotten and unused.
The new hack modules also fail to add bite – Treasure is the best of the bunch (old and new) as it grants you armour whenever ammo is picked up.
Things improve though, when we choose to play as a Demon – the Harvester is great fun! Embodying this monstrosity endows you with a stream of ‘hell’ electricity as your main weapon, destroying all who stand in your way. Harvester’s alternate weapon is a short range attack that spreads out in all directions and is almost always instant death for anyone nearby. The Harvester may sound overpowered, but its offensive capabilities are balanced by low health – you might not last long in battle, but you’ll certainly take a few with you.
Finally, if you’re all about customisation then Unto the Evil has you covered. With the new robot-themed armour, skin designs and taunts, you can take DoomGuy in a totally new sartorial direction. For most, though, DOOM’s about obliteration, not fashion, and such customisation just eats into time better spent splattering people.
DOOM: Unto the Evil is available from the Xbox Store for £11.99, and is included in the £29.99 Season Pass and the £79.99 DOOM Digital Deluxe package.
DLC that feels like a map pack with a few add ons. As good as the maps are, we were hoping for more.
DOOM: Unto the Evil feels like a map pack with a few bolt-ons and, although enjoyable, the limited scope and the hefty price tag – £11.99 – will definitely put people off. Its major saving grace is that as long as the party leader has the DLC, then all members can play on the new maps. Get a few DOOM friends online and let the season pass holder run the lobby. Is that enough to save this DLC?