Bethesda Software’s rebooted Doom is embracing what made the original fast and ultra-violent, but it comes with some new tricks up its sleeve. PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC gamers can all look forward to creating their own maps and modes using a new tool called SnapMap. It’s meant to completely replace traditional modding tools and to be as easy to dip into as Minecraft.
Vice President of Marketing Pete Hines joined the GameTrailers Bonus Round show from QuakeCon and explained what SnapMap for Doom will be offering. The Bethesda executive also hinted at some of the restrictions that users can expect.
“Everything that we’re doing on the mod side will be through SnapMap,” Hines said when asked about making mods. “All of the super powerful build crazy stuff is all going to be done through SnapMap.”
“I used the analogy the other day of Minecraft. If you just pull any 12 year old and sit them in front of Minecraft, if they don’t know what they’re doing they could still make something: they can make a smiley face, they can build themselves a house. But if you put it in the hands of someone who knows what they’re doing, they can recreate Zelda in Minecraft.
“The SnapMap tools are much the same,” he continued. “Give it to anybody and they can do simple stuff, but the complex stuff – all those things that used to be super-complicated – because, if you’ve ever tried to use the Doom Mod Tools they are not something to touch your toe in. You’ve got to know what you are doing.
“The idea is that there’s enough complexity and depth there that you can do all this scripting stuff, and make new gameplay modes. It’s got this really steep high end, but you don’t have to jump right to it like you do with the Doom [mod] tools.”
SnapMap is largely for building indoor environments with large outdoor areas seemingly out of reach. When asked if the tool will allow users to recreate Doom 4, Hines said “probably,” but hedged his response. This is likely due to the fact that the tool is powerful enough that the developers use it to mock up levels for the Doom campaign, but it is not the official world designer.
“I don’t want to say yes for sure because of some of the outdoor stuff we do and how that works, this is more an interior thing,” Hines said.
There are limits on what can and can’t be built in Doom using SnapMap. Id Software and Bethesda will likely detail those limits in fuller detail as the game approaches its 2016 release date. Hines did set expectations that users won’t be creating “cavernous interior spaces” or something that is “30 stories high and half a mile across.”
The good news is that SnapMap will retain the same features between the PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. The only difference will be the user interface for keyboard and mouse versus a console controller. The three will also share BethesdaNet in common to share all SnapMap created maps and game modes. The content created can be shared on any of the three platforms despite cross-play not being supported.
[H/T: PC Gamer]