Game Dev Rigs Roomba To Generate Playable ‘Doom’ Maps From Home Floor Maps


Avid gamers of Doom, the classic first-person shooter from game developer id Software, received a rather unique gift on Christmas Eve.

This gift is the newly introduced feature called the Doomba. Apparently, Doomba is a coined term taken from Doom and Roomba, the popular vacuuming robots.

Presenting The Doomba

Game developer and designer Rich Whitehouse rigged Roomba to create playable maps in Doom from home floor maps. Whitehouse announced this surprise news on his official Twitter account on Dec. 24.

“Now, the fruit of my labor is born. I bring forth DOOMBA, a half-goat, half-script creature, with native binary backing for the expensive parts, to be offered in place of my firstborn on this fine Christmas Eve,” Whitehouse wrote on his personal blog, explaining his latest fun creation.

Whitehouse, Polygon reported, is known for creating Neosis, a tool that is being used by game developers and designers to transfer digital assets between various platforms.

How The Doomba Works

Whitehouse applied the same principles used in creating Neosis for the Doomba module. Roombas are equipped with tiny electronic eyeballs to create detailed home floor maps. The Doomba then converts the maps into a level of Hell in Doom.

Luckily though, Doom players don’t even need to own a Roomba for themselves in order to avail of the Doomba, which is absolutely for free.

“I hope you get some fun out of this feature,” Whitehouse said. “Some will say that it’s pointless, but I have faith in my heart that the Dark Lord will wipe these people from the face of the earth and trap them in a dimension of eternal hellfire. Their suffering will be legendary.”

The game developer and designer shared the map he personally made as well as the instructions on how players can customize their own Doom levels. Whitehouse, however, said he only tried it using the Roomba 980 Robotic Vacuum model.

Whitehouse has been working in the video game industry for 20 years. Some of his notable works include well-received video games such as Prey (original version) and Star Wars Jedi Knight 2: Jedi Outcast.

Published by Bethesda Softworks, a reboot of Doom was launched in May 2016. Doom VFR came out in December last year for PC and the PlayStation 4. Meanwhile, Doom Eternal is coming to the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows in 2019.

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