This article is about the original Doom games monster Cyberdemon. For the monster in Doom 3, see Cyberdemon (Doom 3).
This article is about the original Doom games monster Cyberdemon. For the monster in Doom (2016), see Cyberdemon (Doom 2016).

The Cyberdemon is perhaps the most formidable and powerful enemy in classic Doom. It is a tall, muscular, minotaur-like beast with two dark black/grey horns, a cybernetic right leg, a large rocket launcher mounted on its left arm, red wiring on its lower torso, as well as patches of metal and wires on its right arm. This monster first appears as a boss at the end of Doom level E2M8, and re-appears in the secret level E3M9, and also on E4M2, E4M6, and (on Ultra-Violence/Nightmare! only) E4M7. The Cyberdemon is also featured on the retail box cover of Doom II, and they are conveniently placed in maps where the player can take them down with little effort.

The Doom II manual of the PC version describes the monster in the following way: A missile-launching skyscraper with goat legs. 'Nuff said. The Doom manual, on the other hand, does not list it, presumably to make its climactic appearance in E2M8 a surprise. The PlayStation, Doom 64, and SNES manual for Doom, however, does make mention of the Cyberdemon: Half unfeeling machine, half raging horned devil. This walking nightmare has a rocket launcher for an arm and will definitely reach out and touch you. Make sure you're loaded for bear before you take on this guy.

Combat characteristics

A Cyberdemon will let out a loud animalistic, bovine-like roar when it spots a player - loud enough to be heard no matter how far away it is from the player. It attacks by firing barrages of three rockets. It has 4000 hit points and does not receive splash damage from explosions, making it fairly difficult to kill. It is also the fastest moving monster in the original game (the lost soul's charge attack not withstanding), and second fastest in Doom II (after the arch-vile). When destroyed, the Cyberdemon's mechanical body parts explode, vaporizing the organic parts into reddish clouds of flesh, blood and gore, leaving only his blood-soaked hooves behind; as he explodes, he lets out a short roar that is readily interrupted by the sound of his body exploding.

Cyberdemon rockets are the same as the player's rockets; however as all projectiles shot by monsters, they do not damage other monsters of the same type. Furthermore, the Cyberdemon and the Spiderdemon take only direct hit damage, and are immune to all blast damage (BFG's blast damage being the only exception). Therefore, a greater number of rockets is required to kill these bosses than might be expected, and they must be direct hits. The immunity to blast damage also precludes a player from attaining cheap kills or cheap damage against Cyberdemons by either of the following methods: (a) tricking the enemy into firing rockets while it is standing against a wall, pillar, or other obstacle, or (b) running point blank up against the Cyberdemon while invulnerable through the use of cheats or artifacts. The Cyberdemon is given a higher probability of performing his attack than other monsters, causing him to launch volleys of rockets at a high frequency. While the Cyberdemon does not have a melee attack in the PC games or Doom 64, one unintentional one exists in the SNES port; if the player is too close to one, its attack consists of the rocket firing animation but a "scratching" sound is heard with no rocket fired at all. Brutal Doom, however, does give the Cyberdemon a melee attack: a violent stomp with his right (mechanical) leg that results in instant death even at 200% health and armor. This attack is also present in Doom 3's Cyberdemon. In common with other monsters, although the Cyberdemon is shown with his rocket launcher in his left hand, the rockets emerge from his middle (this visual glitch was ultimately fixed in Brutal Doom, causing the rockets to be correctly launched from the monster's arm cannon).

Tactical analysis

General tactics

Killing a Cyberdemon is almost impossible without a large amount of ammunition. The BFG9000 is the most effective weapon against a Cyberdemon, although the plasma gun can work fairly well. Three to four direct BFG hits will usually kill a Cyberdemon, and at point-blank range two well-placed shots are enough (example). If a BFG9000 is not available, the rocket launcher is also effective - but be prepared for a long fight, since around 45 well-placed hits with the rocket launcher is required to kill a Cyberdemon. Killing a Cyberdemon with other weapons is significantly more difficult: for example it takes around 400 bullets from a chaingun. It is extremely difficult to kill a Cyberdemon with melee attacks and it takes just about 371 chainsaw or non-berserk fist hits to do so, but given their extreme powers and low pain chances, it is strongly not recommended under most circumstances. The Xbox Live Arcade release of Doom II features an achievement that requires the player to kill a Cyberdemon with their bare hands, named "You Have Huge Guts", after the Doom comic. This can be achieved by giving the final blow on it with a fist, after softening it up with other weaponry. There is also a trophy that can be attained called "Knuckle Sammich" on the classic collection of Doom if you kill the Cyberdemon using the same method used to attain the "You Have Huge Guts" achievement on the Xbox 360.

Because a Cyberdemon has a low pain chance, it is difficult to prevent it from attacking. It is also important to be constantly aware of when it fires a rocket, as it will do so relentlessly. Circlestrafing can be used to avoid return fire while attacking. Because one rocket will often be enough to critically injure the player, it is imperative that all rockets are avoided. Because of splash damage, it is also important to stay away from the explosions. For example, it is advisable to avoid standing too close to a wall when fighting a Cyberdemon, as splash damage can be sustained from rockets hitting the wall.

A skilled (or extremely lucky) player can somewhat nullify the Cyberdemon's low pain chance by straferunning towards it to get within point blank range, and then hitting it with the super shotgun. The monster will flinch roughly eighty percent of the time when hit by the full twenty-pellet blast, giving the player time to retreat, reload, and repeat the process. This can take the Cyberdemon down in fewer than 25 shots, but is very risky, and only recommended in areas where the rocket launcher is impractical, or to conserve rocket and plasma/BFG ammunition.

The Cyberdemon's immense size can sometimes be used as an advantage when attacking it. In some maps, the Cyberdemon(s) is(are) in a large courtyard or structure and the entrance is too small for him(them) to pass through. This can help a novice player to escape if major injuries are sustained.

Due to its firepower and hitpoints which are by far the highest among demons, the Cyberdemon easily dominates in monster infighting battles. Because of this, luring it into fighting another monster is a great way to save ammunition. However, there is a chance of them losing if fighting either against the Spiderdemon (often happens in MAP20: Gotcha!) or a large group of very strong demons like the Baron of Hell (MAP08: Tricks and Traps).

In Doom 64, the Unmaker, when at its full power and at close range, can kill the Cyberdemon at a very fast rate, faster than two shots from the BFG9000. Be warned though, its low pain chance means that the Cyberdemon can still fire rockets, even at close range, so don't get too reckless. On harder levels, facing two Cyberdemons simultaneously is still going to be difficult, though not as hard when relying on the BFG9000.


  • The Cyberdemon's left (natural) leg audibly impacts upon the ground; no other monster has audible footsteps, although the mechanical legs of the Arachnotron and Spiderdemon make noises as they move.
  • When killed, a Cyberdemon will let out a loud roar and explode violently, leaving behind only a pair of bloodied hooves.
    • The Cyberdemon's death animation in the 3D version of JDoom is drastically different from the original, 2D animation: when killed, a cloud of blood is still emitted from the monster's body, but the Cyberdemon simply falls head first onto the floor instead of exploding.
  • The Cyberdemon, along with the Demon, Mancubus, and Spiderdemon are the only monsters whose dying sound clips includes noise other than the monsters' vocals; in this case, the Cyberdemon's roar is accompanied (and cut off) by a loud explosion.
  • The Cyberdemon is depicted in the game as an ungulate: it stands on the very tips of its toes, which have fused to become hooves, in the same manner as other ungulates such as horses, bovines, pigs, etc. Ungulates are distinguished from digitigrades (which stand with their toes flat on the ground but their heels off the ground, such as dogs, cats and birds) and plantigrades (which stand with their toes, soles and heels flat on the ground, like humans, primates and bears).
  • In the Doom novels, in which monsters are generally not referred to by their real names, the Cyberdemon's mechanical parts are said to be steam powered, leading the characters to call them "Steam Demons".
  • On the door texture BIGDOOR7, the horned skull is actually a skull of a Cyberdemon.
  • A pair of the Baron-like monsters on the cover art for the original Doom have cybernetic, cannon-shaped arms, reminiscient of the Cyberdemon's rocket launcher-like arm (though only one such monster is usually visible, as the other is cropped out on most versions of the cover art).
  • In a ZDoom-based source port, if the player is killed by a Cyberdemon (monster is credited with delivering the blow that reduces player's health to 0%), an obituary message is displayed at the top of the screen: "[player name] was splattered by a Cyberdemon". When Brutal Doom gives the monster a melee stomp attack as well as rockets, this obituary message is displayed for both attack types.
  • In Brutal Doom, the Cyberdemon has gained a melee stomp attack that deals instant death even at maxed-out health and armor (probably in homage to the Doom 3 version). The rockets now are fire-engulfed, emerge from the rocket launcher instead of in-between its legs (similarly to its Doom 64 incarnation) and are fired in salvos of four instead of just three - the first and last ones fly straight towards the target while the second and third ones fly 45 degrees sideways left and right respectively, unlike the original conception where all three rockets fly straight towards the target. It gets worse in v0.18 and afterward when the player uses the "Offend" command to flip off enemies when there is an active Cyberdemon on the field: the offense provokes the Cyberdemon into a rage, in which it fires rockets in much-more-frequent salvos in six instead of four. In the "rage" salvos, the first and last rockets fly sideways while the other in-between four fly straight towards the target. Finally, the Cyberdemon's death explosion is far more violently enhanced and deals heavy radius damage to anything close to it (except for radius-immune monsters such as Spiderdemons and other Cyberdemons). The modifications make the Cyberdemon extremely lethal and its attack very difficult to avoid, making certain add-on maps all but impossible without cheating. For instance, 2002: A Doom Odyssey features Cyberdemons in relatively small rooms, counting on the players being able to avoid their fire and most of the splash damage; however, the Brutal Doom modifications most likely mean the Cyberdemon will kill the player almost immediately.


Thing type16 (decimal), 10 (hex)
Hit points4000
Speed16 map units per frame
(186.7 map units per second)
Reaction time8 tics
Pain chance20 (5.47%)
Pain time10 tics
Flags00400006 (hex)
Flags list

1: Obstacle

2: Shootable

22: Affects Kill %

Sprites & sounds
Sprite nameCYBR
Alert soundDSCYBSIT
Chase soundDSHOOF and
Action soundDSDMACT
Pain soundDSDMPAIN
Death soundDSCYBDTH
Ranged attack
Speed20 map units per tic
(700 map units per second)
Damage20-160 (direct hit)
0-128 (blast radius)
148-288 (direct hit + blast radius)
Sprite nameMISL
SoundDSRLAUNC (firing)
DSBAREXP (impact)

Damage done by a full rocket volley

Shots needed to kill1,2 Mean Standard
Min Max
Player (100%
health, no armor)
Player (100%
health, security armor)
Player (200%
health, combat armor)
Wolfenstein SS1.000.0011
Lost soul1.000.0011
Commander Keen1.000.0011
Boss brain31.760.4312
Pain elemental2.350.4823
Hell knight2.860.4124
Baron of Hell5.090.5046
  1. This table assumes that all calls to P_Random for damage, pain chance, blood splats, and bullet dispersal are consecutive. In real play, this is never the case: counterattacks and AI pathfinding must be handled, and of course the map may contain additional moving monsters and other randomized phenomena (such as flickering lights). Any resulting errors are probably toward the single-shot average, as they introduce noise into the correlation between the indices of "consecutive" calls.
  2. Assumes that the target takes a direct hit from each shot.
  3. Assumes that direct hits are possible, which does not occur in any stock map.
  4. Hardcoded exception to infighting prevents all damage. Normally, monsters of the same type will engage in infighting if damaged indirectly via the blast damage from exploding barrels, but in the case of the Cyberdemon, the monster's immunity to blast damage nullifies this possibility.

Appearance statistics

In classic Doom, the Cyberdemon is first encountered on these maps:

The Ultimate DoomE2M8: Tower of BabelE2M8: Tower of BabelE2M8: Tower of Babel
Doom IIMAP08: Tricks and TrapsMAP08: Tricks and TrapsMAP08: Tricks and Traps
TNT: EvilutionMAP30: Last CallMAP18: Mill1MAP13: Nukage Processing
PlutoniaMAP06: Baron's LairMAP06: Baron's LairMAP06: Baron's Lair

The IWADs contain the following numbers of Cyberdemons:

The Ultimate Doom445
Doom II355
TNT: Evilution146
  1. May be encountered earlier if the super secret level is played.

Other games

Doom 64


Doom 64's Cyberdemon in Cat and Mouse.

The Cyberdemon in Doom 64 has not gone through many changes except that it has darker colored skin, a more bovine-esque head structure (though the face is very canine-like appearance), is slightly stronger and much larger, with thicker wiring running along its robotic body parts, and - unlike the PC version - the monster's lower back is also prosthetically enhanced with steel plates to reinforce and sustain its volumous spinal cord. The Doom 64 version of the Cyberdemon is notable for having the ability to lead its shots, making it an even more formidable opponent; the Cyberdemon's third rocket is usually fired at the player's anticipated position rather than the player's current position. The rockets also leave smoke trails and fly out much faster. The Cyberdemon's rockets in this game emerge from the launcher itself instead of the middle. While it has the same death sequence animation as its PC counterpart, for the most part (full-body explosion) it's more elaborate in Doom 64, involving its form stricken with several separate explosions before the body essentially evaporates in a haze of fiery blood, complete with a shot of its skeletal frame vanishing with it.

Cyberdemons are relatively rare throughout the game, appearing chiefly in the secret levels or later in the game.

Doom RPG

In Doom RPG, the Cyberdemon was created by evil mastermind Kronos by combining human technology with demon flesh.

Wolfenstein RPG

The Cyberdemon was originally known as the Harbinger of Doom. During World War II, he was summoned at Castle Wolfenstein by the Axis army. B.J. Blazkowicz was able to defeat it with the Spear of Destiny, destroying its right leg and left arm. The Harbinger of Doom vowed that it would have a rematch with Blazkowicz's descendents in the future. The prophecy happened in both Doom RPG and Doom II RPG.


The Cyberdemon is depicted with two bionic legs in this game, due to a limitation of the game's animation system--each character's legs are required to be symmetrical in design, as the leg sprites (which are separate from the torso and head sprites) are simply mirrored horizontally to create the full set of animation frames for walking. Although artwork was created depicting the Cyberdemon with one "normal" leg and one bionic leg, it was not used in the final game for this reason.

Non-Doom games

Main article: Doom references in other games


  • In a PC World article, the Cyberdemon was voted as #16 of the top 47 "The Most Diabolical Video-Game Villains of All Time".[1]
  • In Doom (2016) It is said that Oliva Pierce made a "Deal with the devil" and gave Cybernetic enhancements to demons to allow them more power. Which would understand why they are called CyberDemons because they have cybernetic enhancements.
  • The Cyberdemon in Doom II RPG cannot be insta-killed with the Soul Cube.

See also

External links


Monsters from classic Doom games

Doom & Doom II Monsters

ArachnotronArch-Vile*Baron of HellCacodemonCommander Keen*CyberdemonDemonHeavy Weapon DudeHell KnightImpLost SoulMancubusPain ElementalRevenantShotgun GuySpectre | Spider MastermindZombiemanWolfenstein SS*Final Boss (Romero's head)*

Sony PlayStation exclusives

Caco-SpectreNightmare Spectre

Italics = Introduced in Doom II

Monsters from the Sony PlayStation version of Doom
Arachnotron | Baron of Hell | Cacodemon | Cyberdemon | Demon | Heavy Weapon Dude | Hell Knight | Imp | Lost Soul | Mancubus | Nightmare Spectre | Pain Elemental | Revenant | Shotgun Guy | Spectre | Spider Mastermind | Zombieman