This article is about the Revenant in the original Doom games. For the monster in Doom 3, see Revenant (Doom 3).
A revenant on the move in Level 6: The Crusher, in Doom II.

Revenants are monsters introduced in Doom II that are easily recognized by their high-pitched shriek. They take the form of very tall animated skeletons in metal body armor equipped with shoulder-mounted missile launchers, and blood and gore running down their legs. Their running movements are a herky-jerky approach akin to a stringed puppet.

According to the manual: Apparently when a demon dies, they pick him up, dust him off, wire him some combat gear, and send him back into battle. No rest for the wicked, eh? You wish your missiles did what his can do.


[edit] Combat characteristics

A revenant emits a loud high-pitched scream, similar to an anguished interjection of pain, when spotting the player.

Revenants fire two sorts of missiles; unguided and homing. The homing missiles can be identified by their gray smoke trail. During melee combat they can also strike a blow with one of their large fists, complete with an exaggerated punching sound effect. Revenants have a unique characteristic unlike any other monster that has a melee attack: when the distance to its target is less than 196 units, the revenant abandons its missile attack completely and resorts to punching; if attacked and hurt however, it immediately counter-attacks with a single missile.

When killed, a few of the revenant's bones will shatter and the monster will simply fall on its back, one of the cleanest monster deaths the player will come across.

[edit] Tactical analysis

The revenant's missiles are very powerful and when homing, particularly hard to dodge when out in the open. Fortunately, the pain chance of a revenant is rather high, so a chaingun will generally suffice against a single monster, preventing it from attacking. The revenant is rather fast on its feet, so players must be sure to keep their distance. If they do not, the melee attack of the revenant delivers a fiendishly powerful blow that can easily crush the player with a few hits.

For players with good movement skills however, the knowledge of the revenant's unique melee strategy (see above) can be abused to render them essentially harmless at close range. Berserk punching becomes fairly effective, and can fell a revenant with as few as two hits. Still, because there is always a danger of the revenant retaliating with a missile, tackling them in melee is strongly discouraged for novice players.

On harder difficulties, they are often found in large groups, especially out in the open. When fighting groups of these towering skeletons, it is useful to use a plasma gun, the BFG9000 or a rocket launcher. Two solid blasts from the super shotgun will reliably kill a revenant. It is advisable for the player to keep moving in order to avoid distant missiles, and if pillars, walls, or other obstacles are available, then they will be useful as barriers for stopping homing missiles. The homing missiles are very difficult to outrun, but if the player is able to strafe to the side and then forward just before being hit, the projectile may not be able to come around again. This tactic is especially useful if the player has backed up against a wall; the missile will impact the wall before it has a chance to orbit for another pass. Another way to dodge them is for the player to slide behind an obstacle or around a corner.

In monster infighting, revenants excel in ranged and positional combat, especially if the terrain restricts their opponent's movement or ranged attack efficiency, while their homing projectiles will reliably score hits over long distances and across height differences. At close range however, they fare substantially worse due to their low health and high pain chance; a mancubus or hell knight, for instance, can waste a revenant fairly easily.

[edit] Notes

  • The name revenant is of French origin, and generally means "one who returns (from death)".
  • When compared to the monster as it appears in the game, the revenant model built during the game's development shows a good deal more muscle tissue, and no chest armor.
  • The sprite name for the Revenant's missiles is FATB, and is grouped directly under the Mancubus sprites (FATT). The graphics for these missiles may have been initially intended for the Mancubus projectiles earlier in Doom II's development.
  • Despite the fact that the engine considers the revenant only 56 units in height, the actual sprite of monster is taller closer to 72 units or more in height, making the revenant look as if it is standing "inside" the ceiling if it enters a corridor or room that is less than 72 units in height.
  • Final Doom's The Plutonia Experiment has the most amount of revenants used in a single mainstream Doom title; almost every single level has them, with the sole exclusions being MAP11: Hunted (since it only contains arch-viles as enemies) and MAP17: Compound.
  • Because revenant rockets adjust their direction to aim towards the targeted player, it is possible to place them into stable orbits [1][2].
  • When attacking at range, both of the revenant's shoulder mounted missile launchers visually light up despite that only one missile is fired.
  • Revenants, unlike most monsters, have separate animations for missile and melee attack.
  • PlayStation/Saturn Doom's version of the revenant is considerably easier to tangle with than its PC counterpart; its running speed is much slower (akin to a zombie's or imp's pace), and while it only fires homing missiles, the missiles are also slower and easier to avoid.

[edit] Data

ID #66 (decimal), 42 (hex)
Hit points300
Speed10 map units per frame
(175.0 map units per second)
Reaction time8
Pain chance100 (39.06%)
Pain time10 tics
Bits list

1: Obstacle

2: Shootable

22: Affects Kill %

Sprites & sounds
Sprite nameSKEL
Alert soundDSSKESIT
Action soundDSSKEACT
Pain soundDSPOPAIN
Death soundDSSKEDTH
Melee attack
SoundDSSKESWG (backswing)
DSSKEPCH (impact)
Ranged attack
(sometimes guided)
Speed10 map units per tic
(350 map units per second)
Sprite nameFATB (in flight)
PUFF (trail)
FBXP (impact)
SoundDSSKEATK (firing)
DSBAREXP (impact)
Damage done by a revenant's punch
Punches needed to kill1 Mean Standard
Min Max
Player (100%
health, no armor)
Player (100%
health, security armor)
Player (200%
health, combat armor)
Wolfenstein SS2.180.8015
Lost Soul3.681.0128
Commander Keen3.681.0128
Boss Brain28.301.39512
Pain Elemental12.861.58917
Hell Knight16.001.601220
Baron of Hell31.281.352735
Spider Mastermind92.971.858897
Damage done by a revenant's missile
Shots needed to kill
(normal missile)
Mean Standard
Min Max
Player (100%
health, no armor)
Player (100%
health, security armor)
Player (200%
health, combat armor)
Wolfenstein SS1.590.6814
Lost Soul2.750.7825
Commander Keen2.750.7825
Boss Brain6.091.1849
Pain Elemental9.501.50614
Hell Knight11.681.70816
Baron of Hell22.802.241728
Spider Mastermind67.322.886174
Shots needed to kill
(guided missile)4
Mean Standard
Min Max
Player (100%
health, no armor)
Player (100%
health, security armor)
Player (200%
health, combat armor)
Wolfenstein SS1.610.6914
Lost Soul2.790.8426
Commander Keen2.790.8426
Boss Brain6.091.33411
Pain Elemental9.421.56615
Hell Knight11.621.65817
Baron of Hell22.801.911928
Spider Mastermind67.361.946272

  1. These tables assume that all calls to P_Random for damage, pain chance, impact animations, backfire checks, and smoke trails are consecutive. In real play, this is never the case: counterattacks and AI pathfinding must be handled, and of course the map may contain additional moving monsters and other randomized phenomena (such as flickering lights). Any resulting errors are probably toward the single-shot average, as they introduce noise into the correlation between the indices of "consecutive" calls.
  2. Assumes that direct hits are possible, which does not occur in any stock map.
  3. Hardcoded exception to infighting negates damage (excepting indirect damage caused by exploding barrels).
  4. Assumes that the target is 196 units away. The approximation of consecutive P_Random calls is particularly shaky in the case of a revenant's missile: not only does the total number of calls depend on the flight time of the missile (via the smoke puffs), but the absolute gametic value at launch determines whether the missile is guided or not, and that in turn is highly dependent on how far the revenant walks between attacks.

[edit] Appearance statistics

In classic Doom, the revenant is first encountered on these maps:

Doom IIMAP06: The CrusherMAP06: The CrusherMAP06: The Crusher
TNT: EvilutionMAP05: HangerMAP03: Power ControlMAP02: Human BBQ
PlutoniaMAP01: CongoMAP01: CongoMAP01: Congo

The IWADs contain the following numbers of revenants:

Doom II205990
TNT: Evilution61152233

[edit] Doom RPG

In Doom RPG, the revenant appears as a class of monster. There are three variations, identified by color:

  • Ghoul (normal colors with green "pants" of blood)
  • Fiend (reddish combat gear with blue "pants" of blood)
  • Revenant (normal colors)

This monster explodes when it is killed and causes damage to any player, monster, or barrel adjacent to it. It is weak against rockets.

[edit] See also

Monsters from Doom and Doom II
arachnotron | arch-vile | baron of hell | cacodemon | Commander Keen | cyberdemon | demon | heavy weapon dude | hell knight | imp | lost soul | mancubus | pain elemental | revenant | shotgun guy | spectre | spiderdemon | zombieman | Wolfenstein SS | final boss
Monsters from the Sony PlayStation version of Doom
arachnotron | baron of hell | cacodemon | cyberdemon | demon | heavy weapon dude | hell knight | imp | lost soul | mancubus | nightmare spectre | pain elemental | revenant | shotgun guy | spectre | spiderdemon | zombieman