Hedon

Once a fan-modification of the IdTech (Doom) Engine, turned standalone game - a delightful demonic indie FPS with a charming punk sensibility. 

 

Hedon - a new retro-styled first-person shooter which started out as a one-person passion project mod running on the GZDoom Engine and is still being actively worked on by its developer - could be positioned to become a great new mainstream FPS franchise thanks to how innovative and enjoyable it is.

The breakout star of Hedon is Zan, the creator’s blue-skinned, Half-Orc/Half-Demon warrior OC, who in true retro-shooter protagonist style is perfectly capable of running around massive levels while toting a full arsenal of weapons and gear all while comfortably dispatching hordes of deadly enemies. 

The accompanying story and worldbuilding is surprisingly elaborate too. Without giving away too many plot details, Hedon manages to bring together this marvellous combination of fantasy, industrial, military, and punk 90’s Grrrl Power hand-drawn aesthetics with the classic Doom-style fast combat and open-ended level design to create a uniquely wonderful setting for a hugely fun game.

To this end of creating another game in the vein of the fast-paced IdTech shooter, Hedon features the same wide range of weapons (with no carry limits of course) you might have come to expect - shotguns, machine guns, a couple melee options - as well as a few new, thematically appropriate, late game crowd control area-of-effect tools. 

Equally varied are the game’s many levels - even with the assurance that there is still more to come from this developer - there is already a fair number of maps in the complete first campaign episode. These levels are not only well made as gameplay arenas, but are highly diverse in appearance, and are laid-out in a way that often actually makes sense from a worldbuilding perspective, and help contribute to the game’s environmental storytelling.

Every art asset in the game - every item, character, texture - has been drawn by hand for this project, and the music and ambient sound has been composed by a select few artists in order to keep a consistent and high-quality shine on all aspects of this game. The entire program runs off of the GZDoom Engine, modified for commercial use, and I have to respect the technical achievement that it is to not only create such a massive sprawling game with so many new features on this engine, but that even with all the fancy ambient lighting and dozens of particle effects on screen at any one time, the whole game is so well optimised it runs great on even relatively low-spec PCs, and the whole game itself is under 300MB.   

However, all this hardwork doesn’t pay for itself nor does it necessarily come quickly - which is why Hedon, its its current Steam release form, is still being worked on in regards to both smoothing out any potential bugs, and implementing more content in the future. 

If you would like to support the further development of Hedon, there is an official Patreon page you can pledge at, and an official Discord server where you could always leave your feedback and some kind words of encouragement - links to which are available on the Steam Store Page.  

Recommended.