Arch-vile (Doom 3)


Arch-vile (Doom 3)


Attack Damage

12 (claws), 20 (fire)

Found in
  • Doom 3: Delta Labs Sector 2b, Delta Complex - Caverns Area 2
  • RoE: Phobos Labs Sector 1 (revisited)
  • Lost Mission: Enpro Sector 2, Underground (Part 2), Exis Labs (Part 1 & 2), Hell, Hell Outpost
Cheat spawn

"spawn monster_demon_archvile"

This article is about the monster in Doom 3. For other games, see:

The arch-vile in Doom 3 is a large, off-white colored humanoid demon, standing a head taller than a normal human even in its standard semi-crouched pose. Its elongated arms are both terminated in bloody tumor-like bloated hands with huge, inward-retracted claws. The arch-vile is a relatively high-level demon, possessing more than three times as much health as an imp. As with its previous Doom incarnations, the arch-vile can be easily underestimated. Though not nearly as durable as "powerhouse" creatures like Hell knights or mancubi, the arch-vile's varied attacks and ability to summon other demons make it one of the tougher enemies to defeat for it will instantly summon demons after its appearance (most commonly, far away from the player's position). Many players feel the arch-vile needs to be killed as soon as possible, often with the Soul Cube, the BFG 9000, or the rocket launcher.

Fortunately, arch-viles are usually encountered alone, although they can quickly summon additional demons as backup.

Combat characteristics[edit]

Though it cannot revive defeated enemies in the same manner as the classic version, due to their bodies burning away instead of leaving a corpse, the arch-vile makes up for this by being capable of summoning many of the non-boss demons (imps and zombie commandos are most common, cherubs and wraiths have also been noted, and it will also summon Hell knights in later levels). It can also slash its victims at close range, as well as unleash a fast-moving column of fire that can seriously hurt the player, causing up to 20 points of damage. In Delta Labs - Sector 2 the arch-viles are capable of making the ground erupt in flames underneath the player in a manner similar to its original attack, but this time, it is possible to dodge it, although it requires that players constantly be on the move. First examples are encountered in Delta Labs Sector 2.

Tactical analysis[edit]

Charging the Soul Cube with the arch-vile's minions should be the only reason to hesitate in attacking it (this should be considered by advanced players only). Otherwise, killing the arch-vile should be a top priority. At long range, the Soul Cube and the BFG are the best weapons, and a two-point projectile is recommended. Arch-viles are slow and use no projectile attacks, making it impossible for them to shoot or evade the BFG projectile. Also effective are the chaingun, plasma gun, and rocket launcher. The machine gun is not recommended since it requires almost a full magazine of direct hits to kill it. At close range, the shotgun can kill it with three or four shotgun blasts, but it is possible to kill it with two headshots. The double barrel shotgun can kill it with one well-placed headshot, otherwise two shots would be required. Another tactic is to rush the arch-vile with a chainsaw while it is summoning its minions, since it is most vulnerable at that time.


The December 2002 issue of PC Gamer magazine displayed a pre-release picture of the arch-vile which used the model of what later became the vulgar in Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil. Differences from its appearance as the vulgar include use of an upright walking pose, and orange glowing eyes.

Appearance statistics[edit]

The arch-vile, being a high-tier enemy, starts appearing only towards the end of the game. In Resurrection of Evil, however, arch-viles appear on only one level.

Doom 3[edit]

The amount is the same on all skill levels.

Doom 3 (original & BFG Edition)
Level Amount
Delta Labs - Level 2b 4
Delta Complex 5
Central Processing (1) 5
Central Processing (2) 3
Site 3 2
Caverns - Area 1 3
Caverns - Area 2 2
Total 24

Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil[edit]

The amount is the same on all skill levels.

Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil (original & BFG Edition)
Level Amount
Phobos Labs - Revisited 2
Total 2

The Lost Mission[edit]

Doom 3: The Lost Mission
Level Recruit Marine Veteran
Enpro Sector 2 3
Underground (Part 2) 2
Exis Labs (Part 1) 3
Exis Labs (Part 2) 1
Hell 1
Hell Outpost 1
Total 11