DOOM is officially back: the gory 2016 reboot landed today, putting you back in the armour of a lone space marine, taking on the legions of Hell.
We're still ploughing our way through the campaign to bring you a full review, but after one too many demons used us as a punching bag, it was time to ask the pros for some tips.
Whether you're a DOOM veteran, or you don't know your super shotgun from youre BFG9000, id Software's Marty Stratton gave us plenty of useful hints on how to survive the carnage.
Gear up Doom Guy to match your style
Just because you don't see it as much as your ever growing arsenal of demon death-dealers, don't forget that you can give Doom Guy's suit some beefy upgrades too.
The Praetor suit can let you run faster, jump higher, and dismember demons with even more violence, if you take the time to pump upgrade points into it. Like to run head-first into flame pits and toxic waste? Throw points into environmental resistance and you won't take quite so much damage. It's still going to hurt, though - seriously, don't jump into flame pits.
There's a helping hand for anyone that's hunting down all of DOOM's hidden paths and items, too. "If you’re really into finding secrets, you can upgrade your suit to give you clues as to when you’re around a secret.
"The compass will flash, and you can automatically fill in the map." Neat.
Who ordered the combo?
Doom has always been about big guns, and using them liberally on even bigger demons. Don't expect to pick one and stick with it through the whole campaign, though. This time it's all about weapon combos.
"My favourite gun is the super shotgun - I love that because it’s almost like you’re throwing a punch," Stratton explained. "You get in close to an enemy like a hell knight or a baron, you hit it and it’s just like punching them in the face.
"I also like the explosive shot mod on the combat shotgun, and the remote detonation mod on the rocket launcher."
If that doesn't suit your play style, it's worth mixing and matching to see what works.
"Because you’ve got all the guns and mods at your disposal all of the time, you really get some cool combinations and people doing things. I’ll play one way but then someone else will play a totally different way.
A lot of people were using the plasma with the heat blast mod, and one of the guys that was doing Ultra Nightmare used the micro missiles on the heavy assault rifle. Once it reaches a “Mastered” state through the upgrades it becomes really effective.
"Even on top of that, our perk system (which we call runes), can actually enhance the capabilities of the guns."
Spot the summoners
Sure, that 10-foot cyberdemon in front of you might have a mean punch (and a rocket launcher for an arm), but don't forget about what else might be out there trying to see what your insides look like.
"Oddly enough, a couple of the fodder creatures, the Imps and the helobyte soldiers can be pretty menacing," Stratton warns. "The Imps in particular because they're fast and agile, so they can get into positions where you lose track of them."
Take one too many of the really fast fireballs they throw and you're a gonner. If stray imps are taking you out because you're focused on a larger enemy, make sure the room is clear before taking on the big guys.
That includes the Summoners, which bring other enemies into the world. "You really do have to handle them first when you see one, and that's true of any of the difficulties, because they can make a fight really tough if you take too long to take them out."
Keep your eyes peeled for secrets
Doom just wouldn't be Doom without a plethora of secrets to uncover, and the reboot is happy to deliver. It's more than ammo packs and armour boosts this time around, too - there are some brilliant callbacks to the originals games to find.
Getting them all won't be easy, though. Stratton says "the worlds are so dense now with visual fidelity that it’s hard to pick up on secrets all the time, because it’s just amazing the level of reality you get."
Don't expect to spend your downtime bumping into walls, hoping for hidden passages - things are a little more elaborate for 2016.
"You can often find what looks like a door, or a panel or something that would move. Most of the time they’re hidden off the main path, but sometimes the door will be on the main path - it varies on the secret.
"Within a certain vicinity there’ll be a lever. It won't have a light on it, and will sometimes be tucked in a corner kinda tough to see. You gotta find the lever, use that to find the door, then go back and unlock the secret."
It'll be worth keeping your eyes peeled: finding the right door will walk you into a room that looks just like the 1993 original game, and clearing it will unlock the full classic level for playing later.
Wake up from Ultra Nightmare mode
OK, so you're a glutton for punishment and the other difficulty modes are a cake walk - time for Ultra Nightmare mode, right? Good luck, buddy - one death here and you have to start the whole campaign from scratch.
It's such a tough ask that no-one on the dev team managed it before launch. "We had a team meeting yesterday and the gauntlet was thrown down," Stratton explained. "We have one guy Adam, he's on th 2nd to last level.
"You get to pause between levels, but that's the only time you get to take a breather." There's a better way than rushing straight in, though.
"Nightmare and Ultra Nightmare are actually the same difficulty - they play the same, but in Ultra Nightmare if you die you basically have to start over. Nightmare mode is the same, only you have your saves."
Be smart, be like id Software's Adam. He practices in Nightmare, playing a map until he's really familiar with it, then switches to Ultra Nightmare to make that final push to the end of a level.
Don't get destroyed in multiplayer
The hectic single-player campaign is only half the battle. You'll also have to prove yourself online against the competition - not an easy task unless you're an adderall-popping teenager with the reaction times of a hummingbird.
It doesn't have to be a bloodbath though. Stratton had a few multiplayer-specific tips that should help you bump that kill-death ratio.
First off, movement is key. "We saw a lot of players in the beta that have been influenced by other shooters, getting in and crouching, trying to hide behind stuff. There's no faster way to death than crouching and hiding behind a box. Keep moving."
Second, really think about your weapon and equipment loadout. "Switching between your guns is super important. There’s an award called “switch hitter” for damaging an enemy with one gun then killing them with your other gun. You’ll want to end up with more than half of your kills awarding that medal."
"Choose a weapon that has a nice long range, and also a short/mid-range one to go with it. Be switching between them a lot."
Finally, don't dismiss the hack modules. According to Stratton, players tend to treat them as little bonuses, but you can really use them effectively if you're paying attention to the state of the game.
"There’s a hack module that shows a timer on pickups. You can trigger them on and off when you spawn, with one switching off when you activate the other. I don’t think I saw people doing that effectively with the beta, but I hope as people get more time with the full game and all weapons that they get to play everything and get to learn the nuances."