Look, we know: If you asked 20 different people to name their five favorite levels of the DOOM series, you’d probably get 100 different answers. Each map has its own strengths, and no two players play DOOM the same way. That said, some levels just linger in memory, based on novelty, challenge or pure, clever design.
3. Computer Station – DOOM (1993)
Before DOOM (1993) came along, first-person shooters (as few as there were at the time) were flat, linear affairs. Even DOOM’s immediate predecessor, Wolfenstein 3D, took place on a single plane, generally consisting of razor-straight corridors and perfectly rectangular rooms.
So when DOOM arrived, the more organic layout of its levels was a revelation. There were stairs! Ledges! Pits! Even irregularly shaped outdoor areas!
This newer style of level design is most present in the Computer Station map, the seventh level of the original DOOM’s first episode. As one of the more intricate maps in DOOM, Computer Station was a bold statement about the new direction of first-person shooter design.
The level twists and turns, backtracking on itself and letting the player move up and down via stairs and platforms. Combined with several outdoor excursions, the map offered many players their first sense of playing in a real 3D space. Trust us, kids, this was a big deal.