Mighty Doom, out now on iOS and Android, is a free-to-play Archero-like top-down shooter starring the one and only Doom Slayer, aka the Doomguy. In many ways, it reminds me of those weird ‘80s cartoons that adapted gory, adult action films into kid-friendly animated shows, like Rambo or RoboCop. Sadly, while Mighty Doom is fun, it still suffers from the usual mobile-game bullshit.
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The first Doom game hit the scene way back in 1993. The demonic shooter may not have invented the FPS genre, but it certainly popularized it and made it what it is today. Doom quickly became one of the most popular games in the world, spawning sequels, a thriving mod community, and even the concept of speedrunning. Decades later, Doom is still relevant, still widely enjoyed, and still getting sequels. Now, its latest entry is a top-down mobile game starring a tiny Doomguy ripping and tearing lil’ demons.
Mighty Doom, which I would have named Tiny Doom, is a new game from Bethesda and Alpha Dog games that plays a lot like the recent Tomb Raider Reloaded, which I covered not long ago. Like in Tomb Raider, the Slayer in Mighty Doom shoots automatically. You move them around randomly generated arenas filled with demons, killing everything and unleashing special attacks every so often. Between arenas, you level up and gain new perks. Make it to the end and take out the final boss and you unlock the next area. Each run starts you off with no perks, like in a rogue-lite, and you collect materials and items through each demon-killin’ run that you can use to upgrade the Doomguy between games.
In a switch from Tomb Raider Reloaded, in Mighty Doom the Doom Slayer—staying very on brand—keeps shooting until he dies or vanquishes all the enemies. No lollygaggin’ here. This small tweak makes the game move faster and feel more aggressive. Mighty Doom can also toss far more enemies at you because you never stop shooting. And if you do take damage, don’t worry, Mighty Doom includes the glory kill system from the most recent mainline Doom games, letting you generate health pick-ups by executing dazed demons.
From the heavy-metal music to the way the game encourages you to be more aggressive and active in fights, It’s all very fun and very Doom-like. Well, until you have to interact with all the faff and gunk between runs.
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This is the part where I have to sadly confirm that Mighty Doom, like so many great mobile games, is saddled with some annoying bullshit. The biggest annoyance is the energy meter. It’s very limited, and if you make a few mistakes and end a few runs early, you’ll quickly find yourself screwed and have to wait to play more. Loot is also frustrating, as it seems the game is always making sure you are just short of what you need to upgrade gear, leading to you having to grind more or spend some cash to improve your character’s deadliness.
Still, as someone who can mostly work around and ignore that kind of stuff, when I’m actually playing Mighty Doom, I’m still having a blast. Last night I stayed up way too late playing it, something I’ve done when playing the main Doom games, too. It’s just a shame that such a cool game is covered in bullshit that will, understandably, put off many players and keep them from ever trying it.