As a franchise, Doom commands near-incomparable respect as a seminal text of the first-person shooter genre. First released in 1993, it set the benchmark for 3D rendered graphics, energetic sound design, and high-paced action gameplay that was visceral and deeply immersive. It is impossible to mention more recent reboots without recourse to its first seminal instalment and related game texts: Kim Justice suggests a personal identification with it in a 29-minute video analysis entitled “A Personal History of Demon Slaughter”. Doom is a cherished game for many players, possibly because it evokes memories of “boyhood” gaming and all its attendant gender identity formation (Burrill).
This identification also arises in livestreams and playthroughs of the game. YouTuber and game reviewer Markiplier describes nostalgically and at lengths his formative experiences playing it (and recounts a telling connection with his father who, he explains, introduced him to gaming), saying “Doom is very important to me […] this was the first game that I sat down and played over and over and over again.” In contrast, Wanderbots confesses that he has never really played Doom, but acknowledges its prominent position in the gaming community by designating himself outside the identifying category of “Doom fan”. He states that he has started playing due to “gushing” recommendations from other gamers. The nostalgic personal connection is important, even in absentia.