Quake Mission Pack 1: Scourge of Armagon

a game by Activision
Platform: PC
Rating: 7/10
See also: Quake Game Series

For those of you who played the hell out of Quake, Activision's loading up a new shragfest that serves up more missions, new weapons, and new monsters. Mission Pack piggybacks onto the existing Quake game with three new episodes: Fortress of the Dead, Dominion of Darkness, and The Rift. Quake nuts will find new weapons like a laser gun and lava nails, and new booby traps like razor-sharp pendulums. The game's a lot of fun to play, but it may be too difficult for Quake novices.

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Game Reviews


When Quake came along, there was a great deal of discussion as to how flexible the Quake engine is, and how much more could be done with it. With Scourge of Armagon, the first of two (so far) id Software-authorized add-ons for the game, Hipnotic Entertainment has taken a step to utilize that flexibility and up the ante for Quake wanna-bes. With a slew of new monsters, weapons, traps, and items, scattered across three episodes of several levels apiece, this is one game that will keep Quakers sleepless for quite a while to come.


Scourge of Armagon plays much like the original Quake, with several new monsters and items to add to the fun. While the overall atmosphere of Quake is still the same, there is more variation between episodes, and the features that have been added and enhanced have a very refined feel to them. In addition to the single-player levels, there is an additional deathmatch level included that will send you sprawling.

In addition, after dominating the three episodes, you will come face to face with Armagon, who is described by Activision as "…a half-biological, half-machine creature from both the medieval and technological realm." He boasts rockets and lasers, and he leads his rocket shots when you run, so that side-strafing will do you much less good than it did against the Cyber-Demon of Doom. Hmm… rockets and lasers, half machine, half biological… might this be, A MECH??? It seems that Hipnotic must have had a run-in with the MechWarrior team (also at Activision). Regardless, he is pretty cool-looking, and makes for an interesting opponent.

Documentation & Installation

While the manual is pretty skimpy, it is about the same size as that provided with Quake, and it provides the key information that you need to play the game. Since this is an add-on pack, very little documentation is actually required, and very little is what you get. Installation was rather quick and relatively effortless, and in setup tests on multiple machines, the only problem was a minor error (that did not prevent installation) during installation from Windows NT (which only runs Quake under WinQuake, an unsupported id Software release anyway).

New Features

Scourge of Armagon has a couple of new monsters: The Centron, who are mechanized scorpions with nailguns and a nasty sting, and Gremlins, little grubby buggers that steal your weapons from you. One of the funniest things that ever happened to me was when a Gremlin snuck up on me from behind, stole my rocket launcher, and commenced firing it in random directions, sending his fellow creatures skittering around the room and causing me to duck for cover. You can actually see your weapon in the hands of the gremlin that took it, and the impish mannerisms of the feeble-minded but crafty Gremlins reminded me fully of the classic movie by the same name.

In addition, expect several new weapons: The proximity gun, Mjolnar (Thor's hammer), and the laser rifle. The proximity gun shoots grenades that stick to any surface and explode upon proximity or movement. These are great for dropping at your feet when being chased, and they can do wonders when placed on an elevator or door. In addition, Mjolnar, the massive hammer of the gods that was originally intended for the release version of Quake, has made it into the mission pack. It is a massive (big enough to block your view when you carry it!) hammer that, when struck to the ground, spits tongues of lightning at the nearest enemy. While it has a short range, it can be deadly in close quarters. Finally, the laser cannon fires a barrage of laser shots, which bounce off of walls and, in the right situation, make automatic mincemeat.

Also, there are a couple of new items included: The Horn of Conjuring, and the Shield of Empathy. The Horn, when blown, randomly calls in a Quake creature (often a mere puppy) to your aid. However, when the wind is right, you may just call in a shambler (OH YES!). In addition, the Shield of Empathy is a temporary power-up that splits damage between you and your attacker. If you have sufficient armor and health, let your opponent smack you with rockets -- he'll hurt himself a lot more than he will you. In addition, you can expect several enhancements to the Quake engine, including free-moving sectors (such as a tumbling rock crusher, through which you have to pass), tumbling boulders, fall-away floors, spike mines, and the like.

System Requirements

Minimum: MS-DOS/Windows 95, CD-ROM drive, Pentium processor, 16 MB RAM

Bottom Line

Put simply, Scourge of Armagon is to Quake as Doom 2 was to Doom. Mission Pack 1 : Scourge of Armagon adds a great deal of flexibility, refinement, and longevity to Quake and is an excellent addition to any Quaker's library. While playing through Armagon, I couldn't help but think -- "This is what Quake should have been." Not to put Quake down, this is a great step beyond the foundation laid by the original product. The additional levels, creatures, and items are excellent, but the levels are of very high quality and make for fun deathmatch and single-play alike. In the flood of Quake add-on packages that have come out in the past months, this is by far the best available. You can find Scourge of Armagon for about $25 at your local software store, which is quite a bargain. The original (registered) Quake is required to play this add-on, but for those that already own Quake and are ready for the next level, I highly recommend Scourge of Armagon.

reggie posted a review

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