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COVID-19 pandemic blamed for Doom Eternal game mode cancellation

Doom Eternal executive producer Marty Stratton has announced the cancellation of a promised multiplayer mode for the monster-slaying sequel, driven in part by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on the world of game development has apparently taken a major toll over at id Software, the company behind Doom Eternal.

Over on its Twitter feed today, executive producer Marty Stratton emerged to explain that the company is cancelling a planned “Invasion” multiplayer mode, in part due to the challenges of pandemic-driven remote work.

“As many are aware, we intended to release a free Invasion Mode update for the game; however, the unforeseen consequences of the pandemic and remote working impacted the progress of development for this addition,” he wrote.

Stratton did confirm that the team is taking the opportunity to pivot to a new game update—a single player horde mode like the kind popularized by Gears of War and Halo Reach.

He also left some words of praise for the Doom Eternal team still working on shipping updates for the game through these turbulent times.

“It’s incredibly hard to believe that we haven’t seen each other in person since before Doom Eternal launched more than fifteen months ago, and despite the obstacles created by the pandemic and remote working, dozens of updates and additions have been created, tested, released, and supported from our homes.”

This probably isn’t the first—or the last—game project to be struck down by the sudden shift to remote work, but it does seem worth noting that id Software chose to cancel a multiplayer project in favor of a single-player one, perhaps indicating what kinds of projects are easier to wrangle under remote development.

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