Notepad now runs DOOM

There are many impractical port options for the 1993 first-person shooter Doom. Some of them have been sensible, such as the one that was ported to the Playdate handheld. Some have been ridiculous “just because I could” proofs, such as the one-key version or the Ikea smart lamp.

Running DOOM on non-standard platforms is a timeless meme. DOOM was one of the first games Microsoft used in 1996 to show its DirectX technology. It is now a fixture in shooter legend and joins Wolfenstein as one the most popular games in the genre.

DOOM continues to exist under id Software as DOOM Eternal, and other doubtless future games. However, the original DOOM is still being ported to the most unlikely of places.

John Romero was the creator of Doom. He used one word to describe his achievement: “Incredible”. Chiet provided additional information about his Doom port in a series of tweets. Chiet clarified that neither the footage nor the code for the Notepad application have been sped-up. The game is fully interactive and playable, so what we see is what we get.

NotepadDoom is in this category. Sam “Samperson”, a YouTuber, managed to get Doom running in Microsoft Notepad at 60 frames per seconds. The video below shows it in action. Samperson claims he didn’t speed up the footage nor modify the Notepad code.

Each frame is rendered using Notepad characters, similar to ASCII art. The graphics are not very appealing and Doom isn’t fun to play. It is a new Notepad application and another Doom version that we can add to the corkboard.

Chiet claims his port isn’t a trick, but it’s difficult to verify that claim with only the video. He says that he will release code within the next few days, after fixing a few bugs and adding another layer of polish. It is safe to assume, as with many other Doom ports that Notepad acts only as a display, while the actual game runs outside of the lightweight processor.

NotepadDoom isn’t the first hacker to bring id Sofware’s shooter to a non-gaming Microsoft product. Someone managed to get it to run within Excel earlier this year. Excel’s slow frame rate, similar to Notepad loud graphics, makes the game nearly unplayable or unenjoyable.