Doom Eternal has taken a bit longer to materialize than we’d hoped it would, but developer id says the new game engine is a major leap forward. The new shooter will have more effects and crisper textures, and you’ll be able to render a lot more frames. Lead engine programmer Billy Kahn claims that Doom Eternal’s engine will support up to 1,000 frames per second. That’s more of a theoretical ceiling, though.
Doom Eternal picks up where the 2016 rebooted Doom leaves off. You are the iconic Doom Slayer, battling the forces of hell with all manner of awesome sci-fi weaponry. There will be more demon types in the new game, along with enhanced character upgrade mechanics. That’s all well and good, but Doom is about fast-paced hacking and blasting, and this game will be fast indeed.
The id Tech 6 engine in the 2016 Doom supported frame rates as high as 250 per second. The id Tech 7 engine is ready for the future with a 1,000fps cap. You will, of course, need the right hardware to hit those insane frame rates. It’s unlikely the GPU in your computer can manage that, but Kahn says you might be surprised how many frames you can get. Test hardware used around id during development has hit 400fps in some scenes, and that’s without final game optimization.
For PC gamers, this could mean Doom Eternal remains playable for years to come. Currently, most high-end gaming monitors max out at 144Hz, so any frames beyond that are unnecessary and can actually cause tearing without FreeSync or G-Sync to link the GPU and monitor. Even the id Tech 6 engine could hit that limit. However, we know 360Hz monitors are happening, and manufacturers won’t stop there. Someday, you might have a GPU and monitor fast enough to take advantage of Doom Eternal’s insane max frame rate.
Higher refresh rates aren’t common on game consoles, at least in the current generation. The id Tech 7 engine will still benefit console gamers in other ways, though. Doom Eternal will be able to generate more particles on the screen while maintaining high frame rates. The developers have also streamlined the engine’s CPU usage. While id tech 6 used all the CPU cores, id tech 7 drops the requirement of reserving one core for job scheduling. That makes the whole package more efficient.
Doom Eternal launches March 20th on PC, Xbox One, and PS4. There’s no word on a Nintendo Switch port, but the last Doom did eventually make its way over.