Could the Doomslayer Survive in the Grimdark Future of Warhammer 40k?
We’ve watched the protagonist of the DOOM franchise rip and tear his way through countless demons. We’ve seen him conquer titans, destroy cyborg demon beasts, and survive for centuries throughout the rings of Hell. With DOOM: Eternal arriving later this year, I’ve decided to tackle a question that comes up every once and awhile, especially around the new DOOM titles: Could the Doomslayer survive the grimdark future of the 41st millennium? That’s right, crossover time.
So, let’s make one thing clear. This is a totally hypothetical scenario, and comparing the power of the Doomslayer to things like Warhammer 40k Space Marines isn’t really a one-for-one comparison. All we can do is try our best. Now, before we get into if he could survive, we need to look at what things he’d need to survive against. This can be split into a few categories:
First up are the Forces of Chaos. This is for things like Warp Daemons, Chaos Gods, Chaos Space Marines, Heretiks, all the maddened forces of Chaos trying to sew devastation across the galaxy. These are the closest thing in the 41st Millennium to DOOM‘s demons, but they function on fundamentally different levels.
Now, not all Xenos are threatening; some are fairly peaceful if given the chance. T’au are a good example, as they all focus on achieving the “Greater Good.” In that same regard, there are some, like Orks, who hold an insatiable bloodlust towards absolutely everything. If the Doomslayer was threatened by any Xenos, he would not hesitate to kill.
Tyranids, gene stealing who aliens deserve a spot of their own on the list, despite still being Xenos. They are stronger than most others, and are always evolving. They have special evolutionary abilities that allow them to steal attributes from those they can kill or capture, augmenting themselves with the best attributes of their foes. If the Tyranids managed to capture the Doomslayer, that could spell the end of life in the galaxy.
Much like the Tyranids, the Necrons are Xenos who deserve their own blurb. They are an ancient species that were used as weapons in an intergalactic war between the C’tan and the Ancient Ones. After they turned on their C’tan masters, they forged their own path, returning to their tomb worlds. Necrons have some of the most advanced weaponry, and they are almost unkillable if they are ever awakened from their ancient tombs.
The Imperium of Man
The Imperium of Man is a force unlike any other in the 41st Millennium, with ancient technology they can only barely maintain, and an unconquerable will to dominate the galaxy. Led by the High Lords of Holy Terra ever since the Horus Heresy left the Emperor barely living, kept alive by the Golden Throne. If the average Imperial guardsman, Space Marine, Inquisitor, or Commissar saw the Doomslayer, they’d probably open fire on the unknown entity. That never ends well.
The Doomslayer’s Credentials
So, we’ve looked at all of the greatest threats that the Doomslayer would face, but what are his credentials? Well, I guess first of all, he is an ancient being, who has traveled through space and time hunting any demon he finds and ripping them to shreds. This travel earned him the blessings of powerful beings opposed to Hell, the Nephalim. The Nephalim blessed the Doomslayer with an incorruptible nature and the ability to gain power from his fallen foes, which can be interpreted as the health and ammo packs dropped by defeated enemies in-game. So, he’s been blessed by the Nephalim, but at this time he does not have his signature armor, which allows him to wield Argent Energy. Without his armor, his single-man crusade pushes the demons back to the deepest circles of Hell. Here, he was faced with a mighty Titan.
As you can see, the Titan was no match for the Doomslayer. He felled the Titan and routed its demon army, all without his special armor. As many people in the community like to put it, “he killed it naked.” After that, he managed to convince The Wretch to craft his armor. The armor allows the Doomslayer to harness Argent Energy safely, which allows him to make himself even more powerful.
In the end, the Doomslayer is only temporarily defeated when the demons collapsed the Blood Temple on him, trapping him in a special marked sarcophagus. He laid there for centuries until uncovered by Samuel Hayden and the UAC, which led to him being freed in order to save the Mars Facility from Oliva Pierce’s Hell Invasion. In return for saving the facility (at the cost of Argent Energy refining systems), Dr. Samuel Hayden takes the Crucible, a power artifact, and forcibly sends him back to Hell without a way to return.
Scenarios of the Doomslayer’s Time in the 41st Millennium
There are so many different ways that the Doomslayer could enter the Grimdark 41st Millennium that to say definitively what will happen is impossible. Some people who have tackled this question have acted as if he would have an innate understanding of the world, so he would immediately continue his indiscriminate anti-demon crusade by jetting his way over to the Eye of Terror. However, he could end up encountering so many different potential enemies that assuming one plan of action does not do the Doomslayer justice. Therefore, I’ve prepared what I think are a few likely scenarios.
Scenario 1: Landing on an Imperium World
There are two ways that ending up on an Imperium world could go, and it all depends on who fires first. If the world is, like most others, in the midst of some combat, then whoever thinks the Doomslayer is their enemy will find themselves expunged. If the Imperium ends up attacking him, then they would almost certainly end up ordering Exterminatus on the world, and even then he would likely survive to some extent.
If he happened to catch the ire of whoever may be fighting the Imperium on the planet, he would end up becoming an asset to the Imperium, and could potentially be convinced to travel to other war torn worlds as an ally. This could go on for awhile until he either returned to his own reality, or he discovered the Warp Demons, and at that point he would likely break off to fight them, endlessly.
Scenario 2: Landing on an Ork Infested World
This is something of a variant on Scenario 1, but could have larger implications. An Ork infestation is almost impossible to get rid of, since they procreate more like a fungus than an animal. They designed as a warrior race by the Ancient Ones and they are very good at their job. Of course, an Ork is still an Ork. They’re big, dumb, and definitely killable. On top of that, they would not hesitate to antagonize the Doomslayer if they encountered him. An Ork infestation would essentially be the perfect thing for him to become nearly infinitely powerful. If he gains strength from defeating foes, defeating a nearly infinite source of angry warriors is sure to power him up on that scale.
If the world is a part of the imperium, we might see a similar outcome to Scenario 1 where they order Exterminatus, or they might just end up fighting forever on the world, with a handy dandy unkillable demigod fighting adjacent to them against a common enemy: Greenskins.
Scenario 3: Entering the Eye of Terror
So I’m not gonna lie, this one is still one of the most interesting options. So, if the Doomslayer enters the Eye of Terror, however he does, then he will be face to face with Daemons. That is his element. He will fight as he did in Hell for centuries, as the Brazen Claw Chapter of Space Marines did for nearly 20 years. But, there is a different dynamic to fighting Daemons in Warpspace. These monsters are, for the most part, servants to one of the four main Chaos Gods: Khorne, Slaanesh, Tzeentch, and Nurgle. The one who would likely find the most interest in the Doomslayer is Khorne, the Lord of Battle. Khorne feeds off of combat and a warrior’s hatred for their opponent. No one has more hatred than an incorruptible hellwalker like the Doomslayer, and that would only make Khorne stronger. Khorne would send out his endless armies, who would fall to the Doomslayer in hateful combat. Both the chaos god and the hellwalker would be able to gain untold amounts of power.
I suppose the only question is: Could the Doomslayer kill Khorne? I’m not entirely sure.
Scenario 4: Landing on a T’au World
The T’au Empire is one of the newest kids on the block, but they’ve grown and advanced at an incredible speed. The T’au are all working together to achieve “The Greater Good,” a unified and harmonic society which benefits all life, whether they want it or not.
If the Doomslayer were to end up on a T’au world, a Sept, then he would likely be met with kindness, unless he attacked first. The T’au have an incredibly advanced society, and many intelligent species have joined their ranks, including some humans, and they only fight if they have to. The Doomslayer would likely find refuge on a Sept, but only for so long until war came to the world one way or another. It could be a Chaos incursion, a Tyranid attack, Ork Raids, or even an Imperial Crusade.
The only issue with the T’au is the… questionable nature of the Ethereal Caste and their control of the four other T’au Castes. Many people believe that there is no way that the other castes are willinging allied with the Ethereals, and have some means of mental manipulation for complete control. Any Ethereal who tries to mentally force the Doomslayer to help the T’au, by whatever mysterious means they do it, would doom (pardon my bad pun) their entire Sept, if not the whole T’au Empire and the Greater Good. Whatever their plans are, however they intend to control the T’au, it’s all thrown out the window the second they try to manipulate the incorruptible Doomslayer. But, if they stay on his good side, who knows what they could achieve!
Scenario 5: Meeting Some Space Marines
Everybody knows Warhammer 40k for its Space Marines–genetically engineered super soldiers who were bred to be the loyal troops of the Emperor of Man, led by one of twenty Primarchs. This all changed during the Horus Heresy, where the Primarch Horus led an open revolt against the Emperor in the name of Chaos. Now, there are over 1,000 unique chapters of Space Marines, some of them working for the Imperium, some of them aligned with Chaos, many of them working out their own path to protect humanity and allow it to prosper.
The Doomslayer could fit the profile of a Space Marine if you just used basic descriptions: A powerful, superhuman warrior with advanced training and knowledge of different weapons who uses a suit of technologically advanced power armor. But the similarities don’t stop there. We don’t know for sure if the Doomslayer has had any genetic modifications, but some chapters of Space Marines fit with his unending, anti-demon rage quite well. The first that comes to mind is the Brazen Claws, who fought in the Eye of Terror for almost 20 years before returning. A chapter of great mystery and secrecy, the Exorcists, are an interesting example. The exact nature of their creation, mission, and recruitment are mostly unknown, but they were created as a chapter to be especially resistant to Chaotic Corruption and Daemonic Possession. Recruitment allegedly involves being temporarily possessed, becoming a Daemonhost for a short time before the daemon is expelled.
For this scenario, I’m using the Exorcists. An encounter could go one of two ways. If the nature of their practices does not make the Doomslayer immediately hostile, he would be a great ally and potential recruit for the Exorcists due to his incorruptible nature and incredible prowess as a warrior. If he does see their practices as hostile, then he will wage a war against them as best he can. Space Marines are at the very least on par with the Doomslayer, if not potentially stronger. Hostile Space Marines could potentially defeat him, albeit likely with many casualties.
So, we’ve discussed five brief possible scenarios that could happen if Id Software’s Doomslayer found himself in Warhammer 40k‘s grimdark 41st millennium. These are no way exhaustive of every possible scenario, but I think they showcase a good range of possibilities.
I suppose I haven’t actually answered our title question yet: Could the Doomslayer Survive the Grimdark Future of the 41st Millennium? The short answer is “probably.” He might not succeed against every foe, but a 4/5 success rate, 80%, that’s pretty good.
Do you think the Doomslayer survives in the Warhammer 40k universe? Are there any scenarios that you think we should have included?