The Weirdest Devices That Can Play Doom, Including a LEGO Brick And An ATM
Doom is one of the most influential video games of all time, but surely its creators had no idea how their work would eventually be immortalized. id Software’s 1993 first-person shooter helped define the genre when it first released on PC. Now, its reach has gone far beyond PC, launching on everything from handhelds, to smartphones, to modern consoles, to… a LEGO brick?
“Will it run Doom?” is a longstanding internet challenge where modders and programmers attempt to get the game to run on any device imaginable. When you ask the question, “Will it run Doom?”, the answer is — more often than not — yes. Below you’ll find a list of some of the wackiest devices that can run Doom… with visual and gameplay quality varying greatly depending on the gadget.
Everything Is Awesome, Including Doom Running on a LEGO Brick
In what may be the smallest possible way to play Doom, Twitter user James Brown actually got the game running on a LEGO brick. In the video below, you can see very fuzzy gameplay on a tiny, blue, angled LEGO piece. Brown says the resolution on the brick monitor is a whopping 72×40 pixels, with just 1 bit per pixel. While actually attempting to play and complete this version of Doom would be more painful than stepping on a LEGO brick, it’s still an incredible novelty to look at.
I wired the brick up as a very small external monitor, so you can, for instance, play Doom on it. pic.twitter.com/uWK2Uw7Egr
— James Brown (@ancient_james) June 19, 2022
Make the Demons Pay with Doom on an ATM
Back in 2014, a few very crafty Doom fans figured out how to make Doom work on an ATM. In a YouTube video, the creators walk through how Doom works on the money machine, including use of the side buttons and the PIN pad. Some commenters suggested how the idea could be taken even further, including printing off a receipt with your score after each run, or forcing you to beat a level before accessing your bank account.
A TI-84 Plus Calculator Powered By Potatoes
Taking one look at a Texas Instruments calculator probably gives many of you flashbacks to high school pre-calc… but what if that calculator ran Doom instead? That’s what YouTube user Equalo did back in 2020. To make the project even more insane, the calculator was powered by hundreds of potatoes.
Play Doom on Your Phone… Your Rotary Phone, That Is
Much like the fad to beat games like Elden Ring and Dark Souls with crazy controllers, one person rigged up an old rotary phone to use as a Doom controller. Dialing different numbers controls player movement — albeit at a snail’s pace — while dialing a 1 fires a shot at the enemies.
Run Like Hell in Doom on a NordicTrack Treadmill
On the itrunsdoom subreddit, one user posted a video of Doom running on a NordicTrack treadmill display. Some commenters suggested having to run to make Doomguy move, but that wasn’t implemented at the time. Another Reddit poster talked about getting the treadmill in their university rec center to run Doom, but they were kicked out of the gym in the middle of testing for misusing the equipment.
iPod Nano Can Play Solitaire, Brick, and — You Guessed it — Doom
The early generations of iPod Nano played extremely simple games like Brick and Solitaire, but naturally, someone got Doom running on the tiny screen as well.
Make Memories with Doom on a Digital Camera
If you’ve made it this far, you’ve probably sensed a running theme: If it has a screen, it can and will play Doom. Someone even made the game run on a digital camera. It’s extremely choppy, and looks incredibly uncomfortable to control with the camera’s menu buttons, but it’s still Doom.
Take a Break from Doomscrolling with Doom On Twitter
This is a very different way to play the classic FPS, as the Twitter version of Doom has users entering various commands in the Twitter replies to control the game. The Tweet2Doom bot will then respond to those replies with a 10-second clip of what happens next. There are even some speedruns of specific levels of this version of the game.
ROOT node for Doom Shareware 1.9
Read the instructions in the images below.
— Tweet2Doom (@tweet2doom) October 2, 2021
Programmer Conceives Doom Running On a Pregnancy Test
A programmer named Foone Turing set out to make Doom playable on a prenancy test, along with the help of a small keyboard. The end result is an extremely fuzzy version of the game playing out on a 128×32 pixel monochrome display. Foone worked on multiple projects using pregnancy tests, including a very limited keyboard where you could only type one letter by peeing on the test.
Yesterday I had a lot of retweets and reddit posts and such for playing Doom on a pregnancy test.
But as I explained then, it wasn’t really PLAYING on a pregnancy test, it was just a video being played back, not an interactive game.
Well, now it is. It’s Pregnancy Test Doom! pic.twitter.com/Nrjyq07EVv
— foone (@Foone) September 7, 2020
Doomception: Play Doom on a PC Running Within Minecraft
Reddit user DeltaTwoForce created an impressive Minecraft mod where you can build computers that work as virtual machines. In a video of the mod, you can see the player testing out programs like Paint and, of course, Doom on the computers. So, it essentially creates a game within a game. This is not to be confused with the Minecraft mod that creates an entirely new Doom adventure map within Minecraft’s gameplay.
Even Rats Are Playing Doom Now
A researcher named Viktor Toth ran an experiment to see if he could train a rat to run down a straight hallway in Doom using a VR rig. The rat runs on top of a sphere that controls character movement, and Toth even experimented with training the rat to fire the gun at enemies. The goal of the experiment was to see if VR software is a reliable way to conduct experiments in a more cost-effective faashion.
That’s just a sampling of all the wild devices that can play Doom. There will no doubt be even crazier gadgets capable of playing Doom in the coming years, even if it will admittedly be tough to beat a LEGO bricket and a pregnancy test. Alternatively, you can always play Doom Eternal on the Steam Deck, where it runs extremely well on Valve’s device.
Doom is available for purchase on… well… pretty much everything. Refresh your memory on why it’s one of the best first-person shooters of all time right here.
Logan Plant is a freelance writer for IGN. You can find him on Twitter @LoganJPlant.