In a twisted medieval dimension, undead creatures and bestial horrors have done the unthinkable--callously slaughtering your entire race. Your friends. Your family. Eliminated. But the nightmare has just begun.
User reviews: Very Positive (97 reviews)
Release Date: Aug 3, 2007

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Buy Heretic: Shadow of the Serpent Riders

Packages that include this game

Buy Heretic + Hexen Collection

Includes 4 items: HeXen: Beyond Heretic, HeXen: Deathkings of the Dark Citadel, Heretic: Shadow of the Serpent Riders, HeXen II


About This Game

In a twisted medieval dimension, undead creatures and bestial horrors have done the unthinkable--callously slaughtering your entire race. Your friends. Your family. Eliminated. But the nightmare has just begun. Wielding ungodly weapons such as the Firemace and Hellstaff and casting spells from the Tomes of Power, you must seek your vengeance. Or die trying.

  • Supports up to four players via network, two by modem. Adventure through the game with a friend or crack their skull in a bloody deathmatch.
  • Walk. Run. Fly. Look all around you, even up and down.
  • Choose from among 7 weapons (from the simple staff to the awesome Phoenix Rod).
  • Use arcane artifacts to unleash unearthly power on unsuspecting foes.

System Requirements

    Minimum: A 100% Windows 2000/XP/Vista-compatible computer system

Helpful customer reviews
0.6 hrs on record
It is basically Doom, with a fanatasy coat of paint on it. If you like Doom, you will like this.
Posted: October 6
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0.1 hrs on record
Short version: It's Doom, perfected.

Long version: Heretic is, essentially, a professionally made Doom mod with a fantasy theme. In many ways, its status as a mod is obvious: the crossbow functions exactly the same as the shotgun, the Phoenix Rod is a rocket launcher, and so on. It plays like Doom as well: the game is broken into multiple episodes of 8 levels + 1 bonus. You go through collecting keys and finding secrets until you reach the exit. Killing anything and everything you can along the way, of course. Many of the items are similar as well: maps, invisibility, invulnerability, etc. etc.

This isn't to say that Heretic is just a re-skinned Doom wad. Heretic introduces brand new enemies and items. While many of the enemies are tweaked Doom enemies, there are new ones, such as the Iron Lich and the Ophidian. New items introduce new concepts, such as flight and emergency teleportation. Plus you can turn your enemies into chickens, and who doesn't love doing that? There is also the Tome of Power, which alters weapons for a short time. Some simply become more powerful, but others have different functionality. For example, the Phoenix Rod goes from a long range rocket launcher to a short range flamethrower, while the Gauntlets let you suck the life out of enemies.

Where Heretic really shines isn't the gameplay mechanics, but the level design. First of all, they are just gorgeous. Second of all, they are a technical accomplishment as well. The use of shadows and texture is excellent, which really creates a completely immersive atmosphere. You have everything from buildings, to narrow caves and alleys, to massive fields. The enemies are placed to work best with the current situation, so you always have a fight to deal with before you can admire the view.

Overall, Heretic is a bit harder than Doom, though the difference between the very easy and very hard settings is enormous. On very easy, as long as you don't forget to pause the game before you wander off for lunch, you probably won't die, though there are a few spots where you can take quite a beating. On the highest difficulty, it makes Legendary mode on Halo look like a walk in the park.

There are only one issue: the game was made at a time when 800x600 was considered a high resolution. If you try and play it through Steam, you'll barely be able to tell what's going on because it's so pixelated. After buying the game, download ZDoom, which bumps up the resolution and offers a few other features. It's a free download and setting it up consists of copying the Heretic IWad file into the ZDoom directory.
Posted: September 28
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0.3 hrs on record
This is a classic, but not available for Linux yet, this seems trivial, as it's just running on dosbox.
Posted: October 5
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0.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 24
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16 of 17 people (94%) found this review helpful
4.6 hrs on record
Still the original FPS formula is better than any orher later game
Have fun with this ,as you will have
Excellent classic
Posted: August 26
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11 of 11 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
I like old shooters a lot. Enjoyed hours of Doom and Shadow Warrior, and found this game some days ago.
Well, needless to say, I bought the whole collection haha

So, at first, I thought I made a mistake, Heretic seemed to have only 5 stages. No no, those were 5 chapters, each of them with lots of stages. The game is indeed good, lots of secrets and has this dark ambient, creepy monsters, and awesome weapons.

My only complaint is that it wasn't configured to run on newer systems, so you should probably end up downloading ZDOOM to better customize the controls.

Anyways, incredible game, totally worth playing if you enjoy old games
Posted: May 9
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
30.0 hrs on record
This game is not for people who have only played DOOM-cubed. This game is for people who played ClassicDOOM on DOS. Released during the same era of gaming, rather than being stranded on Mars with only a space-pistol, you're a Heretic, cast out by your fellow man for daring to see the enemy for what they truly are. After D'Sparil's armies wipe out your town, you creep back in with only a Wand, helltbent on revenge. Like ClassicDOOM, this game originally came packed with three episodes, complete with frightening enemies, awesome weaponry, and amazing powerups. Unlike ClassicDOOM, you also had the ability to look up and down and even fly. Shadow of the Serpent Riders added two additional episodes, but as far as I can recall, no new enemies, weapons, or powerups; just new levels.

The game itself is froxen in time; the graphics have not been updated and I doubt anyone will attempt to do so. As such, it is somewhat difficult to see in the distance on the better-developed machines of today. However, this is my only gripe, and there's nothing that can really be done about it. I bought this pack for one reason and one reason only: to return to my childhood. Nostalgia. To remind myself why I got into gaming in the first place. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

People looking for "new and exiciting machanics" will be sorely disappointed. But if you remember the 90s, and ClassicDOOM, and Wolfenstein 3D, you need this in your collection.
Posted: June 22
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2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
I love Heretic. It's nostaglic. When I got my first PC - a 486 DX2 50 - I thought I was the boss! My husband and I used to dialup and death match. Someone wrote how did games like this ever get made because they were bloody fun is what I tell you. Looking at slick and flashed up graphics, some of today's generation of gamers might turn their nose up to it. However, ID Games were a lot of fun back in the day (man I feel old using that phrase, lol) - DOOM, DOOM 2, Quake, Quake 2, Quake 3, Castle Wolfenstein.

I bought this game out of nostalgia. Sadly, it just wasn't updated to really be handled well by newer machines. So, it's good for a nostalgia buy but for gameplay it misses the mark.
Posted: August 23
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0 of 1 people (0%) found this review helpful
1.7 hrs on record
Heretic is doom with magical weapons. It looks terrible on modern displays, and many aspects of the game are hard to manually set, but there are mods that make the game playable/not-look-like-a-pixel-dump. You strafe and shoot, typically lacking for any need to look up or down, and get lost in maze-like levels as you try to find the way out. You will need to key-hunt, but keys really arn't so hard to find.
Gameplay plus possible mod:
Posted: July 6
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7.4 hrs on record
I'ts just fun!
Posted: June 25
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19.4 hrs on record
While I love Doom a lot, this is far from a clone. A dark fantasy setting, weapons that aren't just reskins, and a memorable soundtrack that is worth playing just to listen to. It's also really, really hard, especially on the higher difficulty settings, which is something to be expected of games from its time, but this takes it to a whole other level. I recommend running it through GZDoom. This will allow you to potentially play the level in ways that clearly weren't intended, like jumping through some windows, aiming straight up or down, etc, but it drastically improves the controls and gives you limitless customization.
One of the best shooters out there.
Posted: June 17
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23.4 hrs on record
First game that I ever played.. that was over 15 years ago.. still an amazing game today, definitely one of my favorite games of all time! Of course along with Doom, and Wolfenstein 3D.
Posted: June 14
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1.3 hrs on record
This game, though a bit bland, is fun if you're into first person shooters from the 90s. With the episodes included and the varying difficulty settings along with an extensive amount of secrets to discover and expanisve dungeons to explore there's a lot to keep you busy. With that being said however, the game's atmosphere doesn't really stray from cobblestone-bricked castles, dungeons, catacombs and sewers. That's not to say that they're boring; a nice atmosphere of horror and Dark Souls-esque hopelessness is present here. It can just feel a bit monotonous to see recycled and similar-looking textures, battling the exact same enemies repeatedly with one or two more thrown in during each episode, and hearing the same music again and again. The overbearing use of grey isn't very appealing to the eyes either. With that being said though the maps are really big and sprawling with cleverly placed traps and treasure to run into. I'm also a huge fan of the crisp sound effects, minimalist but funny and charming voice acting, well detailed graphics and the designs of the enemies and environments which draw obvious influence from medieval art. You'll hear the same songs again and again but the songs are admittedly catchy and fit well with the tone of the game.

You can find more inventive and unique games for the same price so in my opinion it's worth having but wait until it's on sale; where you can most often get it for two dollars or less.
Posted: July 28
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7.2 hrs on record
It's like Doom but with magic

No srsly, though. Imagine Doom but set in a dark fantasy universe and with an inventory system. That's what Heretic is. It's also about 47.8 times scarier than Doom (and Doom was pretty scary). But most importantly, between the monster/item/level design and the music, this game drips with a certain level of grimness that Doom doesn't have, although Doom is a bit more badass.

Final score: Not as good as Doom / 10
Posted: July 28
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0.2 hrs on record
A must have for any doom/ old school FPS fan. This game plays in a very similar manner as Doom since: it runs on the Doom engine and it's published and developped by ID software and Raven software.

That being said it feels very distinct since there are different enemy types and your weapons consist of magic rather than guns. There are also items such as the tome of power which increase the damage and add a different firing mode to all your weapons or a spell which turns enemies into chickens.

The short side is ofc that the game is rather old and the graphics are showing their age. However, those who have GZdoom or Doomsday can use those engines to buff up the graphics on not only this game but also Hexen and it's expantions (excluding Hexen II but it does run on the quake engine which isn't too bad)

Here are some useful links:

high res graphics for Heretic+Hexen:

How to download Brutal Doom (if you don't have it already) but more importantly the youtube video's link to GZdoom which can use the high res pak for Heretic/Hexen:
Posted: May 22
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0.1 hrs on record
This game, and the others in the series, simply don't work. It's frozen upon loading it up. I'm sure I could search on the internet and find a solution so I could enjoy this game from my past, but I paid for it to play it, not to fix it and THEN play it. I do NOT recommend this game unless you are confident (and don't mind) fixing it yourself.
Posted: September 17
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0.1 hrs on record
If you tried to like Doom but aren't big in to SciFi, Heretic is the fantasy FPS you should've looked for back in 1994!!! All kidding aside, even if this is your first time checking the game out, you won't be disappointed!
Posted: September 23
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2.9 hrs on record
Doom's medevil cousin. A must play!
Posted: May 10
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1.0 hrs on record
Posted: May 16
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0.8 hrs on record
its fun
Posted: April 29
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