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|“||Making progress, Marine? You will die, and your soul will be mine!||„|
|~ Malcolm Betruger to the Marine Corporal|
|“||What did you hope to accomplish by coming here, mortal? You have something that belongs to me. And I want it.||„|
|~ Betruger as Maledict demanding the artifact from the Combat Engineer Marine|
Dr. Malcolm Betruger is the main antagonist of the video game Doom 3 and its expansion pack, Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil. He is a cold-hearted scientist that responsible for most of the events on the game, and by events of Resurrection of Evil, has taken over Hell and ascended into power and has become the demon called Maledict.
Betruger was initially a brilliant if somewhat eccentric and mentally unstable scientist who served as the Research Director at the Union Aerospace Corporation research facility at Mars City. He worked on a variety of research experiments but later started to focus almost entirely on teleportation research and research into the dimension uncovered by same research, including capturing and studying the creatures living there (which dimension is later revealed to be Hell and the creatures to be demons).
Even as a human scientist, Betruger is a narcissistic, arrogant and cold individual who saw no problem with risking the lives of his staff in order to further his research, considering it a fair price to pay for scientific progress. He also showed absolute disdain for the concern of his staff (such as Elizabeth Macneill) and later even his UAC superiors (such as Counselor Elliot Swann) and their efforts to stop or at least slow down his research until the human cost thereof is addressed.
At an unknown point in time before the events of the game he enters into the Portal himself to Hell and falls permanently under it's evil influence. When he becomes a servant of Hell (and is eventually transformed into a demon) he becomes pure evil, with a passionate hatred of all humans. His goal then becomes spreading Hell's influence to Earth and condemn all of humanity to eternal damnation in exchange for absolute unlimited power from his demonic masters.
Skills and Abilities
As a human scientist, Betruger possessed a genius level intellect which enables him to perform game changing scientific research and experiments that enable innovations such the teleportation device. Once he comes under the influence of Hell (shortly before the events of the game) he gains new powers, including control over demons (and the ability to transform humans into demons, as shown in a cutscene where he transforms a Marine into a Commando Zombie), use of projectiles and possibly telepathy/astral projection, as he was able to communicate directly with the Doomguy and continuously mock him, and remained aware of all his movements.
At the end of Doom 3, he is transformed into the Maledict, a massive skeleton-faced flying demonic gargoyle with Betruger's head at the end of it's tongue. As well as retaining his previous demonic powers he gains the ability to fly, use of fireballs and the ability to call meteor showers. He also gains superhuman strength as shown by his ability to beat a full sized human almost to death by grabbing him in his mouth and repeatedly bashing him on the ground.
Before Doom 3
Betruger was a brilliant scientist appointed research director at the UAC's Mars City Base. He supervised the archaeological dig at Site 1, which proved the existence of an ancient civilization on Mars that had advanced technology, including teleportation, which had been wiped out in a cataclysmic event. which led to information that allowed the construction of teleportation technology, including the main portal which was built at what later became the Delta Complex of Mars City. On this research he worked with other brilliant scientists including Dr. Ian McCormick and Elizabeth Macneill, as well as Archaeologist Piece Rodgers. While conducting experiments with the Delta Teleporter a probe uncovered a new dimension and revealed a creature, the first proof of life beyond earth. Betruger gave orders that research teams be sent through the portal with the intent to capture some of the creatures for research purposes, and to explore the news dimension. However, increased numbers of the research teams were injured or killed by the creatures they tried to capture, and even worse the personnel who went through to the other dimension were driven to insanity after doing so. Despite the human toll Betruger insisted that the exploration continued. Eventually, the research staff (as detailed by McCormick in his audio log) after listening to the descriptions given of the new dimension by the survivors of the teleportation expeditions, and possibly after the study the hieroglyphs at site one by Dr. Rodgers , concluded that the other dimension was in fact Hell, and the creatures they were bringing back were demons. At an unknown point in time Betruger made an unscheduled trip through the portal himself, and returned a changed man. It is apparently at this point that he actively sought to help the Demons from Hell break through to Mars. The reasons for this were never explained in the main game or it's expansion, but in the Lost Missions (an exclusive add on for the Doom 3: BFG Edition) it is revealed that the demons came to Betruger in his dreams, promising him unlimited power in exchange for his aid in the subjugation of mankind. Originally he intended to use an experimental teleporter in the Exis Labs, which had the ability to teleport all the way to Earth, however it was not yet in working order and Betruger was forced to change his plans to invade earth after his former subordinate, Dr. Macneil, reported the horrific events surrounding his research to the UAC Board of Directors and Counselor Swan, who was subsequently sent by the board to investigate Betruger.
At the beginning of Doom 3 Betruger is first seen in the Mars City control tower monitoring the arrival of the Dropship Darkstar and it's three passengers, UAC Counselor Elliot Swann, his bodyguard Jack Campbell and an unnamed Marine Corporal (the Player Character i.e Doomguy) who was sent to replace another recruit who went insane. He requests that Swann be shown to his office immediately. Swann had been sent to Mars after the being notified by Betruger's former 2nd, Dr. Elizabeth Macneil, of the increasing loss of life, injuries, and mental illness caused by Betruger's research.
In a conversation overheard by the marine Swann berates Betruger for what has transpired at the Mars base under his watch and demands access to review all Betruger's research, expressing concern at the human toll of his experiments and notifying him that there will be no further funding until all his research has been reviewed and the concerns of the board addressed. Betruger shows his disdain, claiming the board has no interest in science and is only interested in making money and developing a new "product" (which he says they will soon get). He allows Swann to do his job as long as he stays out of his way, with the promise that "amazing things will happen soon".
Soon after this incident the Marine is sent to retrieve a lost scientist form Delta Labs, Dr. Johnathan Ishii, from a previously abandoned communications tower. Ishii is clearly upset and intends to send a distress signal to earth, making veiled references of horrific sights he has seen that are impossible to comprehend (saying ominously "the devil is real, I know...I built his cage). However before he can send the distress living hell erupts into the base, possessing many civilian and military personnel, forcing the marine to shoot his way back to the main base. Later a tele-conversation between Swann and Betruger is overheard by the Marine, wherein Betruger seems unperturbed by the happenings around him, simply saying he would "handle it" and that Swann and Campbell would not be allowed to do anything. At this point Swann concluded Betruger has lost his mind and that he has to be stopped. Their goal becomes to stop all interplanetary communication, reasoning (correctly) that the proper course of action is to seal off the Mars base until the source of the demonic invasion from the Delta Teleporter can be stopped, and that any rescue personnel would likely be consumed and their ships used to reach Earth. Eventually the marine obtains a communications card with the ability to send an encrypted distress signal, and upon reaching the satellite communications room he is contacted by Swann and the Marine Commanding Officer Sergeant Thomas Kelly (who is secretly in league with Betruger). Swann tries to prevent a distress signal from being sent and Kelly orders a distress signal to be sent. The choice then falls onto the marine as to whom to listen to.
Eventually Betruger reveals himself to the marine in the waste management facility, and confirms that he is in league with the Demons and responsible for the invasion. If the Marine sent the signal, Betruger calls him a fool for playing into his hands as the ships are what Hell needs to reach Earth. If the marine chose not to send a distress signal, Betruger remarks it's a pity but of no concern, as he will alert the fleet himself. The marine reaches Dr. McCormick in Delta Labs who informs him of what happened, and reveals the invasion took place when Betruger took the Soul Cube, a weapon used by the ancient Martian civilisation to defeat the Demons millenia ago, into Hell. After confronting Betruger at the Delta Teleporter Room and killing two Hell Knights, the marine is sucked into hell and, after fighting his way past countless demons and defeating the Guardian of Hell, recovers the Soul Cube. After returning to Mars and disabling the Portal, Betruger taunts him once more and says a new portal has been opened in the dig site in the caverns for his "children" to come through. The marine then fights his way to the caverns (killing Kelly, who has been transformed into the demonic Sabaoth) he reaches the caverns and closes the Hellgate with the Soulcube after using it to kill Hell's mightiest warrior, the Cyberdemon.
Although the demonic invasion is ended all the humans in the Mars City base (including Swann and Campbell) have been killed, with the Marine as the only survivor. The UAC rescue team recovers the marine and remarks Betruger is nowhere to be found. At this point it is revealed Betruger is in Hell, having been transformed into the demonic Maledict.
Resurrection of Evil
Two years after the events leading to the destruction of the Mars base and the death of almost all involved, the UAC receives a signal from one of it's satellites, originating in the Phobos Labs, and sends a research team, led by Dr. Macneil, to investigate. In the archaeological site, a team of combat engineers (including the new Doomguy) discover an ancient Artifact. After Doomguy touches the artifact all his teammates are immediately disintegrated and a new invasion from Hell is triggered. Betruger sends three demons called Hunters (possessing the powers of Helltime, Berzerker Strength and Invulnerability) to retrieve the Artifact both as a source of power and because it will serve as an anchor to a gateway between Hell and the Earth dimension.
The New Doomguy has to fight his way through a newly demon infested facility and reaches Dr. Macneil, who tells him the only way to close the gateway to Hell for good is to return the artifact to Hell. The only means to do so is to use the experimental teleporter in the Phobos Labs to teleport the New Doomguy to the Delta Complex, and enter Hell via the Delta Teleporter. In order to power the Teleporter the Doomguy shuts down the essential systems of the Phobos Labs so that the power can be redirected to the Teleporter. Along the journey he fights and eventually kills the Helltime, Berzerker and Invulnerability Hunters in due course, and obtains the ability to use their powers via the Artifact.
The New Doomguy eventually fights his way to Hell and teleports to a lone rock floating rock outcrop, where Betruger/Maledict arrives and demands he hand over the Artifact. He unleashes his demonic powers on the New Doomguy, flying over him while strafing him with fireballs, summoning demons to attack him, and raining burning meteors on the rock outcrop. After a long battle and after dodging a rocket fired by the New Doomguy, Betruger gains the upper hand and graps the New Doomguy in his giant mouth and repeatedly bashes him into the ground. Betruger then demands the return of the Artifact, and the New Doomhuy, with the last of his strength, obliges by shoving the Artifact into Betruger's mouth, dematerializing the Maledict until only Betruger's skull remains, killing the mad doctor once and for all. The New Doomguy is eventually awakened by Dr. Macneill back in the Earth dimension, although how he (or Macneill) managed to survive or get back from Hell remains unknown.
Maledict is the demonic reincarnation of Dr. Malcolm Betruger. He serves as both the main antagonist and the final boss in Resurrection of Evil, as well as (chronologically and logically) the final boss of the entire Doom 3 storyline.
The Maledict appears as a mostly skeletal wyvern with a large set of wings, two legs with clawed feet, a long tail and a head similar to a Forgotten One. He emits a loud, piercing scream and has empty eye sockets. Betruger's head is fused to the creature's tongue and only appears when the Maledict needs to speak. RoE's ending cinematic shows that the demon is very large compared to humans.
While not invulnerable to conventional weaponry, the Maledict is extremely potent in combat because its attacks penetrate the invincibility granted by the Artifact. The Maledict can withstand multiple BFG and Rocket hits even when augmented by the berserk ability of the Artifact.
At the end of Doom 3, the reconnaissance team, having rescued the young Marine after he defeated the Hell's legion and sealed the Hell Hole, never finds out about Bertruger's whereabouts. It turns out that the mad scientist has been transformed into a large, twisted skeletal monstrosity, with Betruger's head at the end of the monster's tongue.
Its appearance at the end of Doom 3 is initially left open to interpretation as to whether Betruger is being rewarded by Hell for his loyalty, or being punished for failure to kill the Marine. Resurrection of Evil makes it clear, however, that this was part of Betruger's pact with Hell and his power over most of the demon forces.
The connection between Betruger and the Maledict is not clearly explained: whether Betruger merged with the Maledict or is the other way around is never specified. It uses "us" to refer to itself or possibly all of Hell. Given Betruger's personality change however after his first trip through the portal, it may be possible that the Maledict's spirit inhabited Betruger's body as a vessel and that Betruger's own soul was consumed (this is supported by the fact that Betruger sometimes refers to the forces of Hell as his 'children'). It is not known whether Betruger is a part of the monster or if he is controlling it. Either way, he does not seem to mind, as he apparently sees his new form as preferential to staying human (referring to everyone as "Mortals").
In Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil, when confronted by another heroic marine, older than the first marine who managed to kill Cyberdemon, Betruger's head talks about the artifact, revealing it is a powerful object meant to be used by forces of hell, and as speaking of the forces of hell by using the word "us" he reveals his plans of another invasion. He was still seething about his invasion attempt in Doom 3 gets thwarted by a single human marine.
In the final cutscene, the Maledict appears unharmed by the Marine's guns, but it is eventually killed by the Marine using the Artifact. After being defeated Maledict swoops down at the marine. The Marine fires a rocket but misses Maledict. Maledict lunges and promptly grabs him with its jaws, swinging him around over its head and then throwing him down to the ground. The Marine passes out. When he wakes up, he is greeted by Betruger's head. Betruger demands, "Return what is ours," referring to the Artifact. The marine complies when he shoves the Artifact into Betruger's mouth, resulting in a massive explosion that disintegrates both the Maledict and the Artifact. The only thing left is Betruger's human skull which is seen rolling out onto the ground.
- Betruger's name comes from the German word "Betrüger" which means "deceiver", "cheater" or "swindler." It also sounds a lot like the word "betrayer," though the actual German word for "betrayer" or "traitor" is "Verräter."
- Dr. Reinhard from Evil Dead: Regeneration has several similarities to Betruger. In addition to looking similar (with a solid white eye), both were said to have been good before their pacts with evil. They also have German names.
- In the E3 2002 demonstration of Doom 3, Betruger wears glasses or goggles, which were removed for the final release of Doom 3. In the demo video, he is shown pushing past a couple security guards to initiate a dangerous test sequence.
- If on the first level, if you use cheat codes to enter the room where Betruger is, he will be identified as "Joe" - the name for all NPCs the player is not supposed to be able to interact with. He has no lines and will not speak with you.
- By using the method, he can be killed but this will not affect the storyline in any manner,
- Curiously, upon closer inspection, it is revealed that he was looking at a screen of the soul cube.
- According to the Making of Doom III book, many of Betruger's lines and actions were to be performed by General Hayden, the commander of the military on Mars. Hayden was meant to be the assumed villain, and only later on in the game would it be revealed that Betruger was the true mastermind behind the invasion. Later, the developers decided to remove Hayden's character entirely, and establish Betruger as the villain early on in the game.
- Betruger and Mr. White (Area 51) are equivalent (they're bald and almost have the same outfit).
- In Resurrection of Evil, Betruger's blind eye appears to have changed from his right eye to his left eye.
- Betruger is the first human antagonist in the Doom series.
- In Betruger's office a picture of the so called Face on Mars can be seen on a wall, which is believed by some to be the remains of an ancient Martian civilization. This fits with the setting of ancient ruins found on Mars in Doom 3, though is probably just a joke of the developers, and not a part of the background story.
- His face and voice are a homage to the actor Sir Anthony Hopkins, who played Dr. Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs and Hannibal.