Publisher Bethesda has opened up on the reasons behind the cancellation of Doom 4.
“With Doom it was a tipping point,” said Hines. “We looked at it and said, “This game is not hitting the marks it needs to hit.” And it wasn’t just Bethesda, it was [the game’s developer] id coming to us and saying, ‘It’s not that it’s not a good game or an okay game, but it’s just not Doom. It’s veered from the things that we think Doom should be about.’ And again, it’s not like we were happy about it! We essentially canceled a game. That’s what we did. We canceled a thing that people had spent a long time working on and we’d spent a lot of money to get to that point and then we canceled it and basically started over. Which is never easy to do. But it was because we believed in and agreed with the notion of, ‘If this is going to be a success, if it’s going to be worth all this time and effort, then it has to be the right thing, executed the right way.'”
Hines went on to talk more generally about cancelling games, after Bethesda had also scrapped Prey 2: “We are still a company. We do have to pay salaries and keep the lights on and it’s not like we take these things lightly or easily. Games are hard to make and sometimes things happen. But we never take that stuff like, “Oh, it’s fine, take as long as you want.” No, we have a business and we need to try and make money on this and pay everybody on time. So we don’t take that stuff lightly. But we do believe that, ultimately, if the game isn’t good and isn’t right, then this has all been for nothing. If it’s not ready, if it’s not what it needs to be, then we don’t feel like we have any other choice. We don’t feel like it is an option or a choice to put out something that is half-baked or not all the way there.”
Hines has also stated that the scrapped Doom 4 had a “Call of Doom” feel to it. The new version, simply titled Doom, would go on to launch for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC in May 2015 to positive reviews. Here at GameSpot, we placed Doom in our top 10 games of 2016–read the full list here.