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.
1. Kadingir Sanctum - DOOM (2016)
The entire DOOM franchise includes so many fantastic levels in total that we could have picked five more just to fill this spot. If we were forced to choose, we’d keep coming back to Kadingir Sanctum - our first vision of Hell from DOOM (2016).
Known to locals as “The Blood Keep,” Kadingir Sanctum does a wonderful job of encapsulating everything that positively rocks about DOOM - not just the 2016 game, but the series as a whole. Its intensely vertical areas show off a dimension seemingly tearing at the seams while also testing out the DOOM Slayer’s newfound acrobatic abilities. Open-area battles force you to use every ability at your disposal to best some of DOOM (2016)’s fiercest arenas – both in terms of gameplay and general gnarlyness of the level’s design.
And if that isn’t enough, this level also includes one heck of an easter egg. In the open area with the giant doors where you fight your first Baron of Hell, there’s a small cave with a lever activating the Classic DOOM area for the level – right next to that lever is a skeleton, wearing the Dovahkiin’s trademark helmet from Skyrim...with an arrow in the knee.
Visually striking, intricately crafted and loaded with a variety of challenges, Kindingir Sanctum really shows off the whole DOOM package with this incredible tour through Hell.