We’re just a matter of weeks away from DOOM’s launch, but it’s only now we find out from id Software via live Twitch stream that its SnapMap level creation tool only allows players to build four-player maps. That’s down from the 12-players on the nine maps DOOM ships with.
The tool itself looks very neat and has some powerful features, allowing users regardless of platform to piece together DOOM maps for co-op and PvP play. There’s a number of pre-built rooms and scenery objects to place, and these can then be shared with other players. Rated and ranked, the best maps will in theory float to the top. All well and good, but as it happens the scale of these maps is going to be far smaller than anything id themselves have the freedom put together.
This is a frustration for a couple of reasons. Firstly, and most importantly, as previously announced DOOM will not have mod support. At the time Bethesda’s Pete Hines said ”Everything that we’re doing on the mod side will be through SnapMap.” Mods are an absolute DOOM staple throughout its 23-year history, and this feature has been stripped in favour of SnapMap, which it now turns out is very limited in scope.
Secondly there’s the DOOM season pass to consider. Announced last month, the DOOM season pass is now the only way for DOOM players to get access to new 12-player maps. When the season pass was announced we said it may be a bit redundant if the quality of the SnapMaps are good enough. Well not any more.
For me this is a really disappointing turn of events. What started out as a feature with serious potential now looks as if it's a noose around DOOM's neck.
What do you make of these revelations from id Software? Should mod tool support be reintegrated?