Strife

From DoomWiki.org

Strife UK retail box.

Strife: Quest for the Sigil is a Doom engine game created by Rogue Entertainment and published by Velocity Incorporated in 1996. It offered an RPG-like action game, with heavy story elements and voice acting. Among its added features were hubs similar to Hexen, inventory, the ability to increase the player's accuracy with most of the weapons, an item that could destroy force fields, and the ability to raise your maximum health from 100 to as much as 200 permanently. Strife is also the very last commercial game to use the Doom engine. Its source code was lost.

Story[edit]

The following is as it is explained in the manual of the game: "You are a wandering mercenary, led to the small town of Tarnhill by rumors of conflict between The Order, a well-equipped religious dictatorship, and The Front, the rag tag resistance movement. While searching for The Front you decided to take a brief rest somewhere that you thought was safe. The Order acolytes have been rounding up all suspicious characters in the area. Yes, you happen to be one of them. What they didn't expect, though, is the knife you keep concealed for situations just like this one..."

A comet has hit the Earth, unleashing a virus and killing a large amount of the populace. A lot of the survivors started to hear the voice of a god in their heads (The Entity) and worshipped it. The Order took over the world and all women and children found were killed, forcing the survivors to go underground, while the men became peasants. The Order's rule is brutal and oppressive to the extent an underground resistance is formed. Calling themselves the Front (referred to as "The Movement" in the demo version), they struggle to free themselves from the Order. However, the Order's technological advantage has dampened the Front's efforts.

Gameplay[edit]

Unlike most games built from the Doom engine, Strife allows for conversations with other people in the game (with voice acting for the more important ones) as well as a special "Query" key. This button lets the player know how long they have been playing Strife, as well as the current mission that has been given to the main character. There are also decisions that the player must make in order to progress through the game that changes the ending of the game. There are three such endings as a result, with only one being the "best" ending.

Strife is far more hub-like in its maps than Hexen, in that you can go back to nearly any of the maps you've been to before (with few exceptions). It is the most non-linear of the Doom-based games, with the possibility of doing several things out of order coupled with multiple endings.

Commercial failure[edit]

Strife failed to gain traction in the market due to its exceptionally untimely release, hitting the stores between Duke Nukem 3D and Quake. Reviewers were particularly harsh on its "dated" graphics and level of detail in the environment. Still however, the game has a 71 out of 100 MobyScore, based on accumulation of reviews from its time period, so the decisive factor in its failure may have been insufficient promotion on behalf of Velocity, which was already in financial trouble. The added stress of Strife's failure caused that company to close its doors within the same year, leaving Rogue Entertainment in need of a new publisher.

Strife characters[edit]

Unique amongst Doom engine games, Strife's plot is carried out in real time using a conversation system built on the Doom engine's menus. A character's portrait may be shown in the background, subcaption text can be toggled on or off, and most characters include full voice acting. Characters are conversed with by approaching to within melee distance and pressing the "use" key. The player and character will face each other and dialogue will begin. The player may be asked to make choices, be offered to buy advice or items, or make a trade of one item for another. Besides these characters, various antagonistic entities such as acolytes and templars will also converse the with player - so long as he has not yet alerted them to his hostile intentions. These enemies rarely have anything to say other than gruff dismissal and the inane cult-like banter of the Order's propaganda.

Strife enemies[edit]

Strife's enemies include the various denizens of the Order, all with suitably religious titles, and the army of robots they have created to guard their fortresses. While an alarm is not raised, the organic enemies will generally not attack unless attacked first, and as mentioned above, may even converse with the player. Robots on the other hand attack on sight, as they can tell that the Strifeguy is not authenticated with their controlling systems. Living enemies are particularly weak to poison and fire attacks, and are instantly vaporized by the Mauler.

Strife has multiple bosses. Upon defeating most of them, one of the mysterious spectres, who have been sent out by the Entity to possess important members of the Order and cause them to covet the pieces of the Sigil, will emerge.

Strife weapons[edit]

Name Description
Punch Dagger A katar-like dagger attached to the player's right glove. Its strength increases with stamina implants.
Crossbow Can fire two types of bolts, electric and poison. Poison bolts are instantly deadly to living targets.
Assault Rifle A standard automatic rifle with a high rate of fire. Initially very inaccurate and requires use of short, controlled bursts.
Mini-Missile Launcher Fires small rockets that are less damaging than Doom's.
Grenade Launcher Fires two types of ammunition, high explosive rounds or phosphorous grenades. The latter cause raging flames to spread out.
Flamethrower Built from parts torn off a downed crusader. Immolates living enemies; less effective against robots, which take one fourth damage.
Mauler A dual-mode energy weapon created by the Order; the weapon of choice of templars. Capable of instant vaporization. Its alternate firing mode unleashes a huge burst similar to the BFG9000.
Sigil Also known as "The Sigil of The One God," a sentient weapon composed of five parts which is worshipped by the Order. The player must assemble it and use it to challenge the Entity.

Strife items[edit]

Levels[edit]

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

Source code genealogy
Based on Name Base for
Doom II v1.666 Strife Chocolate Strife
SvStrife
Vavoom
ZDoom