DOOM II interview


16 years after id Software released DOOM II on PC, the game is now available on Xbox LIVE. This week we caught up with Brandon James, President of Nerve Software (the team responsible for bringing the game to LIVE) to learn more about what you can expect from this version of the classic FPS.

DOOM II features a new episode; can you talk about how this came about?

When we approached id about doing DOOM II for XBLA, we wanted to add significant new content to the title that would appeal to those who have played the original DOOM II and for players new to the franchise. A lot of the designers at Nerve started out in the industry by creating levels for DOOM and DOOM II, so we knew our away around the editor and what it takes to create a compelling experience in the world of DOOM.

The new episode, “No Rest For The Living” expands upon the more traditional elements found in the original DOOM II episodes. There are many more secrets that reward the player, potentially opening up larger portions of the environments; we also have new tricks and traps, vertical gameplay elements, and in some areas, a LOT more monsters.

We have all had a blast creating and testing the new episode!


What’s your favorite achievement for the game?

“The Great Communicator” — Get 20 Kills with the Chainsaw in a single-player level. The chainsaw brings back many fond memories for me. In fact, if it wasn’t for winning a DOOM II tournament many years ago, with the chainsaw, I may not have ever been in the industry.

Any other extras fans can look forward to?

There are two pieces of unlockable items for your Xbox Live Avatar within the game. We can’t wait to see players out there with the new items.

What multiplayer options will players have with DOOM 2?

Players may play up to four-player deathmatch or cooperative through split-screen, over Xbox LIVE, or a combination of both. If two of us here at the office are playing a split-screen deathmatch game, we can both join in to another game over Xbox Live!


Any fun stories you can share about working on the project?

One of the real highlights was showing the game at QuakeCon and seeing how players, usually playing cooperatively, were enjoying the new episode. There are a lot of secrets, and secrets within secrets in the new episode. Watching the players exclaim with excitement at finding them, or getting 100% secrets was a blast!

Reader Comments

  1. I’ve been playing the new episode and it’s great.

    If you did a Steam release of just the new levels I’d love to throw up to $5 more at you so I could play it through in Skulltag.

  2. well lads it’s allready out on the pc! ???? and there is a new version out.. with new maps n features…

    doom2 is still huge scene on the mutiplayer front.. check out the internet for engine developments and maps.
    just like EZQuake…

  3. I absolutely LOVE the new levels. As a long-time Doom fanatic (my wife and I founded MacDoom Review in the ’90s!), I found the No Rest For The Living expansion to be very fun and fulfilling. You guys really know how to exploit the Doom II engine for maximum effect.

    I just said words to that effect in my June 9 review on my own gaming site,, and am planning to put together an audio review for Busy Gamer Podcast 35 this Sunday. Just sharing since I thought you’d be interested, and I’ve seen some haters out there – thought you’d appreciate an honest favorable review.