If you scare easily, Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil can be a heart-pounding experience. But if it takes more than dark corridors and monsters jumping out of corners to make you sweat the cold stinky sweat of fear, Nerve Software's expansion pack quickly becomes a tedious trek through "Been-There-Ville."
The story is about as creative as Doom gets: It's two years after the events of Doom 3 and you're part of a Marine force sent in to trace a homing beacon from deep in the facility. Soon enough, you accidentally unleash the forces of Hell once again. Now you'll have to trek through the UAC Mars base and Hell itself all while blasting holes in demons and reading other people's private electronic journals for clues and backstory.
As expected, a few new demons appear, such as the Vulgar, an imp-like creature, the Mancubus-like Bruiser, and the Forgotten, a flaming skull similar to a Lost Soul. Really, these are just the same old monsters with new skins.
To deal with these new threats, you'll have two new weapons. The first is the double-barreled shotgun; primitive, but an old Doom fave that gets the job done. The second new toy is known as The Grabber. You can use this to pick up rubble and toss it at demons, or even grab fireballs thrown at you and send them back to your foes. (Half-Life 2 called – it wants its gravity gun back.)
The one addition that stands out the most in RoE is The Artifact, which you acquire at the game's start. It slows down time, lending to some genuinely challenging puzzles and boss fights; if you plan on beating RoE, you'll have to master it.
A new capture-the-flag mode supports up to eight players for LAN and online play, but it's just a marginal improvement over the original.
Staying alive is definitely more challenging the second time around, but the game still feels extremely linear and simply lacks much surprise. Just like with Doom 3, RoE works best if you're afraid of the dark, but sadly most of us have outgrown that fear long ago.