Doom: The Dark Ages – how id Tech evolves for the current-gen console era

June 23, 2024
Comments off

Doom: The Dark Ages is our first look at the latest version of the legendary id Tech engine, as the series seemingly moves from the relatively constrained battlescapes and glory kills of Doom (2016) and Doom Eternal to something on an altogether grander scale for current-gen consoles and PC only. While the trailer contains less than two minutes of actual gameplay footage, there’s still plenty to glean about The Dark Ages and its tech from what id has revealed thus far.

The first thing I noticed in the trailer was something I didn’t expect for a Doom game: volumetric clouds. They’re featured prominently in many shots of the trailer, with the most obvious shots being the intro shot of the burning citadel floating in the sky. Here, the clouds wreathing the structure show clear evidence of local self-shadowing, lighting from the sun and light transmission, visible on the clouds’ fringed edges.

Later on, as the Doom Slayer is shot down planet-side, the clouds part around him – though it’s likely that this is a VDB animation playback of some sort, rather than a physicalised volumetric simulation given the performance implications. Nonetheless, you can actually spot volumetric clouds throughout the trailer, often above mountains in the distance, and they sometimes seem to show evidence of movement and evolution – interesting stuff.

Read more

Comments are closed.