Doomsday 2.1 contains several improvements for an all-around nicer experience.
Graphics optimizations: While games still use the classic renderer like in 2.0, all graphics are now drawn using OpenGL 3.3. This enables optimizations for more efficient rendering of the player view, menus, text, and the Doomsday UI.
UI improvements: The Doomsday UI look and feel has been refreshed. The game library is now more flexible and powerful with further game customization settings and view options.
Multiplayer convenience: Clients will automatically download missing PWADs from the server before joining the game.
Game-specific save folders. Game profiles have individual save folders so that their save files won’t conflict. When it comes to old custom profiles you may have, you can manually create a new save folder (right-click on the profile), but you’ll need to move any existing save files over by hand.
Game library view options. View options are accessible via the game library tab menus (labeled “…”). Games can be sorted based on different criteria like “recently played” or “title”. You can also now choose if you want the custom games separately listed, or everything in a single list.
Data file configuration. The search folder configuration UI is simpler and more flexible: there is now a single list of folders and you can choose whether subfolders are searched in each one separately.
Cleaned up Options menus. Options menus in all games were cleaned up and improved. A few broken widgets were fixed, for instance the one for changing weapon switching priority. The Bindings submenu now wraps the bound items on multiple lines if there isn’t enough room. Menus also have smooth scrolling.
IWAD updates. The Ultimate DOOM and DOOM II IWADs from the DOOM 3: BFG Edition are recognized as available games, as well as the included “No Rest for the Living” expansion. Also, the latest Freedoom release is recognized and so is the Macintosh variant of the Hexen IWAD.
Visual tweaks in Heretic and Hexen. The automap colors now match vanilla Heretic more closely. The appearance of the player status bar was tweaked, and a GL shader is used for the Invincibility Ring effect. The Heretic and Hexen automap parchment backgrounds are drawn with improved scrolling and scaling. Bugs were fixed that were causing the Hexen automap to sometimes go invisible.
Configurable line widths. Automap and crosshair line widths can be changed. The defaults were made significantly thicker to match the vanilla VGA apperance.
UI look and feel. A number of minor UI appearance tweaks were made, for example popup animations are now shorter and simpler. A few foldable settings groups were added in the larger dialogs (like Audio Settings).
UI internals. The Doomsday UI framework was improved to support runtime DPI changes, allowing UI resizing to be done on the fly. For example, one can now move Doomsday to an external display that has a different pixel density and the UI will be rescaled accordingly. One can also adjust the UI scaling factor manually without restarting Doomsday (in User Interface Settings).
Custom game IWADs. You can select any package as the main data file of a game instead of just the known IWADs. This requires creating a custom game profile, though. Custom profiles may also specify additional gameplay customizations like
-respawn via the GUI.
Master Levels. The Master Levels for DOOM are now automatically tagged “masterlevels” so it’s easier to find them in mod lists. (Tip: Use the “Play in…” feature via the Mods list to start one of the Master Levels easily.)
Browsing known IWADs. Mod lists show “gamedata” and “core” tags on request. You can search for these tags easily via the Mods tab menu. The “gamedata” tag is given to recognized IWADs, and “core” is for Doomsday’s own packages.
Improved mod editing behavior. If you edit a mod/package at runtime while it is loaded, Doomsday will automatically unload the package when the status of files is updated. This happens for instance when editing a DED file while it is loaded as an individual mod. Previously Doomsday just died with a fatal error in this situation because it didn’t know what to do.
Mod compatibility. Mods may alter game data in ways that cause savegames to be unplayable without the mods. Doomsday displays a helper UI if it detects that the currently loaded mods are incompatible with savegame being loaded. This UI was made smarter: it can pick a newer version of a mod that was used previously (in case it was upgraded, for instance).
Assistance with missing data files. The dialog where you select mods for a game will show a more detailed note about mods that are currently missing but selected for loading. You can also configure data file search folders from the same dialog to more easily locate any missing files.
Mod indexing. When Doomsday detects that a new build has been installed, it will automatically clear the metadata cache and redetect all data files (useful in case the detection rules have been improved).
Remote file access. Multiplayer clients are able to access files on the server. This is restricted to mods such as PWADs due to copyright reasons, so it is not possible to load the games' main data files from the server. These remote files are cached under the runtime folder and can be later on found in the Mods list using the tags “cached hidden”.
Better file handling. Data file refresh is now more robust and has its own activity notification. Previously it was typical that the UI would block for a few seconds when Doomsday was reindexing data files, even though it was supposed to be occurring mostly in the background. There was also a problem with cleanup of temporary files. Every time Doomsday is started it creates a new directory for temp files, but these were never cleaned up so eventually it was possible that access to the files failed due to existing conflicting files.
More efficient graphics API. All graphics are rendered via OpenGL 3.3. Previously Doomsday has been using the obsolete OpenGL 2.1 compatibility API. Thanks to the new version, graphics can be drawn more efficiently, although the classic renderer is still mostly CPU-bound.
Renderer correctness. The player FOV is now specified as the horizontal field of view angle. Previously some additional adjustments were done to account for 16:9 and other wide screen aspect ratios, but that made using the setting quite imprecise in practice. (Tip: Try a bigger FOV value if your display has a 16:9 or wider aspect ratio.) Hexen player weapon sprites were not obeying the configured texture filter settings.
Audio enhancements. When using FMOD, you can select the audio output that Doomsday will use. The sound effect channel count can also be configured in Audio Settings (this used to require the
-sfxchan option). By default, music playback is paused if the game window loses focus. An option to control this was added in Audio Settings.
Various bug fixes and improvements. See version 2.1 in the tracker for the list of issues.