Doom has undoubtedly left a significant mark in the gaming community, with its gory, demon-slaying roots dating back to 1993. The game certainly enjoyed a healthy dose of success, but its popularity stagnated as more titles came into the market – until 2016 swung around. That year, id Software and Bethesda gave the series a fresh breath of air, pushing out a charming remake which brought in the best parts of Doom, and later on proceeded to garner much critical acclaim.
Leveraging on the reignition of interest, co-creator John Romero decided to head down the memory lane in celebration of the game’s 25-year legacy. With Sigil described to be “an unofficial spiritual successor to The Ultimate DOOM’s 4th episode”, the project has him creating in-game maps across a total of nine levels as “a labour of love and reminder of all the amazing times that we had at id working on the original”.
I'm excited to announce the project that I've been working on: SIGIL, an unofficial spiritual successor to The Ultimate DOOM's 4th episode! Read about it here: https://t.co/bVDrRntSqG #johnromero #romerogames #sigil #doom#pcgaming #pcgames #buckethead #retrocollection
— 𝕵𝖔𝖍𝖓 𝕽𝖔𝖒𝖊𝖗𝖔 (@romero) December 10, 2018
In a bid to stay true to the original Doom, Romero put meticulous thought into the design. Details have been subtly added to the levels more so than episodes one to four, with the boss stage taking on a terrifying aesthetic. Meanwhile, E5M6 is said to be a gigantic room, one touted to be the “coolest room” he’s ever created.
An extra touch of nostalgia sees the inclusion of the original synth-metal soundtrack, with legendary metal guitarist Buckethead lending his instrumental prowess to Sigil. There’s a catch to this, however: the add-on is set for release in the original format for Doom expansions and mods, which means players with an existing copy of the original game would be able to download the file for free. Alternatively, non-owners and newcomers to the series can consider forking out US$5 for a purchase of Doom.
The most enthusiastic of Doom fans have one last treat in store, and that’s the Sigil fan boxes. It comes in two editions – the Beast Box and standard version, the former of which include the following goodies that are only limited to two sets per purchase:
- A beautiful demonic over-sized box, inspired by the id Anthology™ box, individually numbered and signed personally by John Romero and featuring the artwork of Christopher Lovell.
- A 16GB 3-1/2-inch floppy disk-themed USB that includes the free megawad data and extras.
- A 2-disc booklet styled case that includes the free megawad data and full soundtrack by Buckethead and behind-the-scenes information on the original game and the megawad’s development.
- A beautiful 8″ x 10″ art print signed by the illustrator, Christopher Lovell.
- A SIGIL-themed coin.
- A pewter statue of John Romero’s head on a spike.
- An XL-sized SIGIL T-shirt.
- 2 stickers: 1 SIGIL and 1 Romero Games.
The inclusion of the pewter statue in the Beast Box is a cheeky reference to a famous Doom Easter egg, and the neat, geeky touch is bound to excite the hardcore fans. In comparison, the standard edition misses out on the extra gear, and instead features the same Christopher Lovell artwork sans signature, 16GB 3 1/2-inch floppy disk with extra content, and the two-sticker pack, while swapping out the 2-disc booklet-styled case for a jewel one that leaves out the behind-the-scenes bits.
Pre-orders for both versions will open from December 10 to 24, 2018, with the arrival of Sigil slated for mid-February in 2019. Following that, players can look forward to Doom Eternal, the sequel to the 2016 hit, which is shaping up to be very, very promising.