Recommended software

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Below are the most popular applications and tools to use for playing and editing for ZDoom.

Source port

GZDoom

GZDoom 4.12.2 is the most latest and stable release of the ZDoom code-base. It offers an optional hardware-accelerated renderer in addition to the classic software renderer. Development builds are available.

QZDoom

QZDoom 2.1.0 offers a first look at experimental features before they are merged back in GZDoom. Development builds are also available.

ZDoom

ZDoom 2.8.1 is the last stable release of ZDoom. It allowed all the usual features of ZDoom plus many new ones such as custom damage types, status bars and much more. See ZDoom version history for a succinct list of new major features added in each iteration of ZDoom, and which have been added to the last development builds.

Level editing

Ultimate Doom Builder

The most up-to-date map editor, a continuation of GZDoom-Builder Bugfix. This map editor should be used regardless of target format, be it vanilla or UDMF. The older editors should only be used if your hardware cannot run UDB.

The other editors on this page can be considered deprecated.

GZDoom-Builder Bugfix

Continuation of GZDoom Builder and Doom Builder. Its development is currently discontinued. It requires the same hardware like Doom Builder 2.

Doom Builder

Doom Builder is easily the most known Doom level editor today. It allows creating maps both in vanilla and more modern formats, but it's currently superseded by Ultimate Doom Builder and is not recommended for use.

Its successor is Doom Builder 2, a total rewrite in C#. However, to use Doom Builder 2, the computer must meet some basic system requirements:

  • 2.4 GHz CPU or faster. (Multi-core recommended)
  • Windows XP, Vista or Seven
  • Your operating system must be up to date
  • Graphics card with Pixel Shader model 2.0

During installation the following additional components are loaded: .NET framework and SlimDX. The last version from the old codebase, Doom Builder 1.68, is still available, but no longer supported.

Lump management

SLADE3

SLADE3 is the successor to both SLumpEd and the level editor SLADE. It has a familiar "list" interface to previous lump editing tools. It supports most of the sound/image formats that ZDoom can use, and can convert formats to others with ease. It has a text recognition feature for text based jumps such as DECORATE and ACS, to help modders correct their code easily before compiling/testing. It and its predecessor SLumpEd are also currently the only lump managers that can deal with ZIP/PK3 formats.

Frontends/Launchers

ZDL

ZDL is the most popular ZDoom launcher currently used. It is a very small application which allows players to quickly set up source ports, IWADS, PWADS and other various settings in seconds. There are also "fan" versions of the tool to extend it's functionality, even for slight changes such as recognizing pk3 files.

Doom Connector

Doom Connector 3 is one of the many doom multiplayer connectors out there, but it is the only one that lets users create ZDoom and GZDoom specific "rooms". It also has rankings, chat rooms and a very simple interface.