Playing the Game

Playing the Game: The Culture of Digital Games


DOOM is a first-person shooter, originally released in 1993. Players take the role of a hardened space marine sent by the Union Aerospace Corporation (UAC) to Phobos, one of the moons of Mars. Your mission is to investigate the results of a terrible accident that occured during secret teleportation experiments. Demons, zombies and other evil creatures are now overrunning the base, and the objective swiftly becomes a fight for survival. The game's sequel, DOOM II, was released in 1994, and DOOM 3 a decade later. A film based on the game, starring Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson, was released in October 2005.

Extensive additional information about DOOM is available on Wikipedia. An introductory worksheet entitled 'How to Play DOOM II' is available here.


The following books and articles discuss aspects of the DOOM series. If you come across any more please .
Aarseth, Espen (1998). Aporia and Epiphany in Doom and The Speaking Clock: Temporality in Ergodic Art. In Marie-Laure Ryan (ed.), Cyberspace Textuality. Bloomington: University of Indiana Press, pp. 31-41. A difficult text.
Bittanti, Matteo and Morris, Sue (eds) (2005). Doom: Giocare in Prima Persona. Paolo Ruffino and Matteo Bittanti, traduzioni. Costa & Nolan. Forthcoming, in Italian. Contents in Italian available here, and in English here. To be published in English as Doom: The First Person Reader.
Crogan, Patrick (2003). The Experience of Information in Computer Games. Fine Art Forum 17 (8) (August 2003). Retrieved 21st September 2005 from here and here. A response to Aarseth (1998) which discusses first-person shooters in terms of cybernetics and contemporary technoculture.
DeMaria, Rusel and Wilson, Johnny L. (2004). High Score! The Illustrated History of Electronic Games. 2nd ed. New York: McGraw-Hill/Osborne, pp. 274-75.
Herz, J. C. (1997). Joystick Nation: How Videogames Ate Our Quarters, Won Our Hearts, and Rewired Our Minds. Boston, MA: Little Brown, pp. 83-90. Discusses DOOM as a popular cultural phenomenon.
Järvinen, Aki (2001). A Doom with a View: Introducing Ludological Premises. Computer Games and Digital Textualities. Copenhagen: IT University of Copenhagen. Discussion of games as narratives, which briefly mentions DOOM. Abstract available here.
Kushner, David (2004). Masters of Doom: How Two Guys Created an Empire and Transformed Pop Culture. Random House. A pop-history of the making of DOOM. Not academic.
Lister, Martin et al. (2003). New Media: A Critical Introduction. London: Routledge, pp. 265-66. Short discussion of DOOM.
Manovich, Lev (1998). Navigable Space. Retrieved 26th September 2005 from here. Originally published (in German) in ONSCREEN/OFFSCREEN: Grenzen, Übergänge und Wandel des filmischen Raumes. Hans Beller, Martin Emele & Michael Schuster (eds). Stuttgart: Cantz Verlag, 1999. Compares DOOM and Myst.
Mäyrä, Frans (2008). Doom (1993): Controversy, Immersion and Player-Created Mod Culture. In: An Introduction to Game Studies: Games in Culture. London: Sage, pp. 101-114. Extended discussion of many aspects of DOOM.
Myers, David (2003). The Nature of Computer Games: Play As Semiosis. New York: Peter Lang Publishing. Chapter 11 (pp. 97-111) discusses DOOM II as an exemplar of the action genre.


Doom 3. Official DOOM 3 website, including a free demo.
DOOM Movie Site. Includes trailer.
id Software Website. Official DOOM II website.

System Requirements

The official minimum requirements to install and play DOOM II (Collector's Edition) are:
486 processor operating at a minimum of 50MHz or any Pentium/Athlon processors
8MB RAM (64MB for Windows XP, 128MB recommended)
Microsoft Windows 95/98/ME/2000/XP-compatible computer system (including compatible 32-bit drivers for CD-ROM, video card, sound card and input devices)
140MB of uncompressed hard-drive space (plus 100MB for the Windows swap file)
Quad-speed CD-ROM drive (600k/sec sustained transfer rate)
DirectX 8.0a