DOOM finally gets 1v1… by playing on a lawnmower

DOOM finally gets 1v1… by playing on a lawnmower
id Software | Husqvarna

Written by 

Tom Chapman


24th Nov 2023 16:16

Over the years, we've seen some weird and wonderful ways to play id Software's DOOM. Whether it be playing the seminal shooter inside Minecraft, on the Domino's Pizza app, or even a pregnancy test, finding new and ingenious ways to blow the heads off Pinky Demons.

We thought we'd seen them all, but to celebrate 30 years of DOOM, lawnmower brand Husqvarna has combined our love of shooting demons and keeping a tidy lawn. Better yet, it's given us 1v1 DOOM in the most unlikely place possible.

One 'hell' of a tribute to DOOM 

Although Rare's GoldenEye 007 gets the nod for helping popularise first-person shooters on consoles, the genre's very founding can be seen in Wolfenstein 3D and DOOM. Paying tribute to this legend of the gaming world, Husqvarna engineers have done the seemingly impossible. 

DOOM is now playable on the company's Automower robotic lawn mowers, and if you want to test your skills, you can head to the DreamHack Winter 2023 gaming festival, taking place in Jönköping, Sweden, from November 23-26.

Much like how we've seen those viral videos of DOOM running on anything with a screen, Husqvarna's R&D department had the brilliant brainwave of trying it themselves. Apparently, plenty of the team has played the OG DOOM back in the day. Ironically, Husqvarna's first robotic lawn mower launched around the same time.

"We like to call this one hell of an update. For the first time in history, it's possible to mow down demons on a robotic lawn mower," says Björn Mannefred, Robotics Software Engineer at Husqvarna. "We are thrilled to keep pushing the boundaries of innovation and in doing so, pay tribute to DOOM and its founders."

Marty Stratton, Studio Director at id Software, added, "Over the past 30 years, we’ve continually been amazed by the passion and ingenuity of the DOOM community. The list of ‘things that run DOOM’ is absolutely incredible.

"We're thrilled to see robotic lawn mowers finally added to the list. The engineers at Husqvarna have done a terrific job and we appreciate the inventive and fun tribute."

The first ever non-gaming DOOM championships

Husqvarna lawn mower playing DOOM
Click to enlarge

As for how you get DOOM running on a robotic lawnmower, Christian Bondesson, Software Engineer at Husqvarna, concluded, "It all started last Christmas when my family was away, and I had ordered Game Engine Black Book: DOOM.

"As I immersed myself in this brick of a book, I got the idea that maybe we could get a robotic lawn mower to play DOOM. And here we are. For me as an engineer and a passionate gamer this is a dream come true."

Using the mower's onboard display and controls, you use the control knob to turn left and right, START to run forward, STOP to strafe and open doors, while pressing the control knob lets you fire. Better yet, there's the added addition of both single-player and multiplayer, with the latter held locally.

At DreamHack Winter, Husqvarna is hosting the world's first DOOM championship on a non-gaming device, with the finals taking on the legendary Deathmatch Mode. DOOM turns 30 on December 10, which is the perfect time to hold the championships.

Prizes include Husqvarna's most premium robotic lawnmowers, and if you want to join the ultimate LA(w)N party, you'd best start practising your skills. Either way, this is one DOOM port that's a grass 'cut' above the rest.

Tom is Trending News Editor at GGRecon, with an NCTJ qualification in Broadcast Journalism and over seven years of experience writing about film, gaming, and television. With bylines at IGN, Digital Spy, Den of Geek, and more, Tom’s love of horror means he's well-versed in all things Resident Evil, with aspirations to be the next Chris Redfield.

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