The Possessed are a new type of former humans introduced in Doom. Mindless enemies transformed from UAC workers into violent cannon fodder by Olivia Pierce's Hellwave, they act as common and easily-dispatched enemies for the player to combat during the early areas of the game.
The Possessed are humans who have been taken over by the forces of Hell, with mutated and deformed appearances. They are created from many different types of UAC personnel, from civilian workers to military and security forces (these latter becoming Possessed Soldiers and Possessed Security, and are described in their own articles), and appear in all UAC levels. The Unwilling are their counterparts in the Hell levels.
Appearance-wise, Possessed civilians can be distinguished by what remains of their UAC outfits and their surprisingly diminutive stature compared to the player. Up close, it is evident that their mutation has taken great effect physically; their skin is almost mummified and brown in color, and their skin seems to be fused with parts of their armor and weapons, and their movement is erratic and slow. Their eye sockets have disappeared, and instead they have a single large socket in their forehead (possibly an occult "third eye").
Strategically, they are extremely weak and easily eliminated with a quick melee strike or repeated attack from any weapon. A headshot from the Pistol can make a Possessed civilian's head pop off and blood gush out of the neck, killing it instantly. They cannot move particularly fast or hit particularly hard, meaning the player is always at a huge advantage in comparison to them and their main goal is often as a reprieve or distraction for the more powerful demons encountered; alone, they are barely capable as a threat, but in large groups, they should not be allowed too close for caution's sake.
The Possessed Soldier, being an actual fighter, is much tougher, and considerably more dangerous than an Imp. The Possessed Security variant of the Soldier, due to its shield, is more deadly still, comparable to the Hell Razer, and certainly more cumbersome to deal with, especially in narrow, confined areas.
UAC REPORT FILE: GASWST6U
The Possessed are created in a Lazarus Wave event, a phenomenon first discovered by Dr. Olivia Pierce during her Lazarus Project. While most victims exposed to Argent biowaves will expire without further effect, some subjects will absorb traces of Argent Energy and enter a state of posthumous vigor. Despite necrosis on the internal organs (with the exception of the brain), the victim continues to animate and exhibit a low order of sentinence for weeks or even months after clinical death. Posthumous brain activity in the Possessed is limited to instinctive behavior. The Possessed are known to be territorial when confronted by the living. When isolated, they will often enter a dormant state for extended periods of time. They will stand, unmoving, for days or weeks at a time until presented with a live food source, or threatened by a predator.
An interesting behavior has been seen when the Possessed are held in small groups. They will drag human corpses to a central location within their holding pens, and then perform a silent ritual around the pile of bodies. The resulting ceremonial site appears to be the inital stages of a Gore Nest. These actions must be driven by a telepathic communication with higher ranking demons , as there is no local brain activity that could manage such choices. The Possessed will perform these tasks even when limbs are removed or Pavlovian pain responders are implanted in their cortex, further cementing the theory that they are unwilling slaves performing an integral part of the life cycle of the demons. The Possessed create the birthing ground for new demons and upon expiration are themselves used as fertilizer for the Gore Nest.
There are six types of Possessed:
- Possessed Scientist
- Possessed Worker
- Possessed Security
- Possessed Soldier
- Possessed Engineer
- In Foundry, the player will come across a fight between a single Possessed Soldier and three Possessed Workers. This implies that the Possessed do not discriminate themselves from other demons.
- Unlike all previous Doom games, where the UAC personnel and zombie soldiers are depicted as hapless victims of a demonic attack, it becomes clear over the course of this game that the UAC personnel actually went to their fate willingly, whether out of brainwashing or peer-pressure (See: UAC (2016)). This has the effect of increasing the player's sense of isolation over that of Doom 3 and making the player feel far less sympathy for the Possessed.