Quake is a fast-paced and intense first person shooter, tasking players with repelling cruel creatures from another dimension. You play as Ranger, a grizzled and tough soldier with enough strength to lift an ox. After government experiments involving teleportation opens a doorway to another dimension, enemies come flooding through the gate. It's up to Ranger to explore the new world, destroying all threats he comes across. If successful, he's save the world. If not, all of human kind is doomed to death.
In many ways, Quake is a spiritual successor to DOOM. Both games are made by the same developer, id software, and feature similar gameplay mechanics. Like DOOM, you'll have to complete maze-like levels by finding keys and items, hitting switches, and finding the exit. Along the way, there are a number of enemies you'll have to blast, ranging from lumbering zombies to other worldly dogs and creatures. Moreso than DOOM, there's a tone of horror and depravity under the surface. Once you step into the world of Quake, you know things are messed up. Ultimately, it's up to you to fix it.
The game is broken up into four different episodes. Each episode introduces new enemies and gameplay mechanics, but each one is jam-packed with excellent gunplay and level design. There are around eight levels per episode, including hidden levels to unlock. Each episode has its own visual theme, so you won't become bored with the same environments. Before you enter an episode, you can choose from one of four difficulty levels. Choosing a higher difficulty presents some new challenges, as you'll have to complete stages with dwindling ammo resources and minimal health. Levels range from small and compact to large and sprawling, but thanks to the quick movement speed of the main character, you'll be able to quickly explore them.
When it comes down to raw gameplay, Quake is honestly pretty simple. Besides running really fast, making some crazy jumps, and tearing through enemies, you won't be tasked with doing much else. Some boss fights and select rooms have light puzzle elements, but these are quick to solve and don't require much effort. Because of its straightforward nature, Quake is all the more excellent. The game doesn't bog itself down with needless gameplay or extra missions. Instead, the player is granted a slew of excitement and mayhem, without unnecessary padding.
Besides the excellent single player levels, there are also some competitive multiplayer modes to enjoy. Most modes are a variation on Deathmatch, which pits all players on the map against each other. You can enjoy free-for-all, team gameplay, or one-on-one matches. Luckily, the Quake community embraces mods and user-created content, so there are countless additions you can pick up online.
When it first released, Quake was the fastest, most intense shooting game ever. In the modern age, there are other games like it, but Quake still stands tall as a titan of the industry. It has a unique setting and story, and the level design and environments are very memorable. The speed and visceral nature of the gunplay makes it addicting and fun, whether you're playing single player or multiplayer. If you're in the mood for some classic and more simple gun action, give Quake a play.
So much for Doom II, but have you heard about Quake, the stonksome new release from iD scheduled for release in the latter half of '95? The company's keeping it all pretty much under wraps (understandably) but John Romero (programmer/developer at iD) maintains (allegedly) that "The next game is going to blow Doom all to hell. Doom totally sucks in comparison to our next game... Quake! The fight for justice! Quake is going to be a bigger step over Doom than Doom was over Wolf3D!"
That aside, initial murmers suggest that Quake is indeed going to blow the lid off anything and everything due for release over the next 12 months, and will be a quantum leap over the original Doom. For starters, it's going to use a completely new engine (it will use none of the code from Doom) and it will be in be in true high-res 3D (i.e. not faked Doom 2D/3D) with characters made up from texture-mapped polygons that have real depth rather than being flat sprites (a bit like the characters inVirtua h'ighter - but better!)
It's also going to have a much more intricate player environment that will be totally externally programmable (using a planar surface as opposed to lines and triggers) and will be extremely modular -"Doom was just the tip of the iceberg." You will be able to look up and down, leap, and crawl. There's gonna be real physics in the game too - yep, we're talking gravity, "down is down" (characters will tumble when they fall from height and can be knocked flat on their backs from a heavy blow) and there will almost definitely be a multi-player link-up as well as a vr tie-in with a major manufacturer (there's even talk of a special bundle). To make sure it's entirely how they want it the guys at iD are doing it all themselves - even the soundcode. "Sound is a major integral part of the Quake design, and yes, you will be able to wear a headphone/microphone unit and speak to each other (using a vr headset). You will be "speaking into" the game world, so the closer you are to someone, the louder your voice is - and the monsters have ears too!"
And the plot? Well, let's just say it's set in a fantasy world where the player becomes a Thor-like character who wields a giant hammer. He can use his tool to throw at or bludgeon anything and everything (NICE!). Other differences? Well, sources reveal that as far as Quake is concerned, it's going to be more of a "total d&d fantasy adventure" than a stomp about and shoot, and there's even talk of an experience points system (a la d&d) for killing monsters, reaching new levels etc., though fear not action lovers, it also promises "total action", and there might even be a few dragons in there somewhere.
So what kind of machine will you need to run this action-fest spectacular? Well, nothing too far fetched by today's standards: iD maintains that "Quake will run well on a Pentium, but a 486 is required. It's just a notch up from Doom's requirements - 386 required, 486 recommended." There's also talk in the us of a 24-hour Quake-fest that users will be able to plug into and play to their hearts content, though this is said to be "at least a couple of years away". The game will be very much a multi-player experience, however, and there will be some sort of Quake start-up package for those who want to buy a Quake server. As for speed, they won't know how it runs until they've sorted out the code, but it will be in a higher resolution than Doom.
All this, of course, is just pure hearsay, but so what! Headsets, dragons, hammers and real-time physics?! Can't wait!
It's coming! it's coming! QUAKE, THE follow-up to Doom, and The Game To End All Games is coming. This Christmas. For months now, the Internet has been buzzing with rumour upon rumour upon rumour upon rumour of Quake news. Scant titbits have been slowly trickling through from ID's HQ in Dallas. Rumours of magic hammers. 100-player network games, dragons, and "spooge" have been passed around like nan bread.
John Romero and Dave Taylor, Quake's programmers, have popped up on dwango (the pan-US game server system) and America On-Line (sad CompuServe-type thing), dropping hints and then buggering off before anyone has a chance to ask them anything.
The basic through-line is that Quake will take the gamesplaying world by storm with a revolutionary 3D engine, revolutionary graphics and multi-player gameplay, revolutionary weapons and level architecture, and some other revolutionary-type stuff. Very much like er. Doom did, two years ago. Here's a summary of what to expect.
Fantasy D&D-style locale. Not snoozy like Dungeon Master, but really fast-paced and atmospheric, like Heretic, with a possible storyline based on Norse Gods/Strapping Young Men/Blond Ayrian Heroes Strolling Around Their Bronze Muscled Torsos Glistening With The Sweat Of Youthful Exuberance - ahem. Key words here are: gothic, shadowy, scary and "spooge".
None as yet ("Plot? Ha ha ha!"). Probably will be as cellophane-esque as Doom's. Hopefully, will skirt the Vicky The Viking quest for the magic hammer type stuff, and just get down to destruction. Keywords here are: blood, guts, gore, intestines, steaming.
In tune with the gothic surrounds. Qiiake will sport a variety of D&D-style monsties. Dragon and knights (as you can see on the screenshots) as well as ghosts and witches. "The monsters will be cool," says Romero. "They'll have leaders and followers." The much raved-about "Monsters vs Monsters" fights that you can engineer in Doom will be kept, but they won't be that much cleverer. "Good artificial intelligence is a waste of time; it slows the game down," says Taylor.
Not an awful lot of information on the armaments as yet; just that the main weapon will be a hammer of sorts to squish opponents heads. The rocket launchers, shotguns, and plasma rifles that we've all learnt to love won't gel so well with the setting, but hopefully ID will avoid Heretic's crappy "wands" and "crossbows". Likely to be a "hellgate cube" - a kind of R-Type-style guardian, which floats about you and may change sides. There are definitely no spells. Or trolls. Or pixies. Keywords: Heretic, Schmeretic.
"The best way to play Quake will be with mouse and keyboard," says Taylor, although Quake will support separate keys for looking up or down, and an automatic up/down mode. ID also plans to support VR headsets for a totally wrap-around Quake-o-rama. You will also, thank God, be able to strafe. Keywords: thank God, hurray.
The screenshots say it all really. Mega shading, texture-mapping, parallaxed sky, light sourcing, shadows - all in real time, all in true 3D. The monsters and other players will be polygon-based so will, theoretically anyway, have Virtua Fighter-style animation. Quake will also "probably" support some 3D accelerator cards (such as the mythical Glint). Keyword: 'spooooooge'.
Quake will support 3D surround sound and may have soundtracks by that legendary punk band. Nine Inch Nails, and, oxymoron city, Thomas Dolby. Unconfirmed at this stage, although recent postings seem to indicate that there will be no music; just ambient sound effects (such as screams and people gargling in their own blood). Keyword: Dolby, cool, and, last but not least, "spooge".
Here's the crunch. As with Doom, ID is developing the network/modem game first and promise unbelievable possibilities. Dedicated Quake servers will pop up all around the world, allowing a "possible" too players in the same game ("if the server can take it"). Romero also promises that deathmatch will be as fast and frenetic as Doom's, but at the same time will demand more skills from the players to interact with the more complex geography. Modem play will be fully supported and there's also a possibility of cross-Internet games.
Keywords here: phone bill, dead social life, sad, UberFragMeister, and, of course, "spooge".
Quake will be fully customisable. All the maps and "entity forms" will be in easy-to-understand text files, with the graphics in standard .lbm format. You'll also be able to design new monsters, new weapons, add new sounds, and create new levels "easily". Also, if you upload your new stuff to your local dedicated Quake server, every player online will have access to them. Keywords here: cool, wow, fab, holey moley, not forgetting "spooge".
Without doubt. Quake will be the gaming event of the year. Other games developers and gamesplayers alike are chewing their nails down to the wrist in anticipation. The screenshots look good. The rumours sound great. And the release date seems attainable. We can but wait. But let's leave the final words to Dave Taylor shall we?
"Oh, when you saw Wolf you spooged on your knees right? Then Doom came out and you spooged all over yourself again, only this time more. 'Wow,' you thought, 'I didn't know I could spooge that much.'Just wait till Quake, you'll be mopping spooge up for days."
Says it all really, doesn't it.
OKAY, okay, we'veI been down on our knees in front of this game for months now. Nary has an issue of Zone gone by in the last year without some mention of Quake, or spooge, or some hideously sticky combination of both. We wanted you to share the vice-like anticipation which clenched our testicles, our incessant reciting of Football League Tables and the Lords Prayer, that stinging feeling, watering eyes, cold showers. We just wanted you to share that with us. Now the wait is over. You've allocated a portion of your spooge reservoir for the shareware version. You've seen the bare bones of Quake - the engine, the weapons, monsters, the architecture. Now, we're here to tell you how much cooler, and better, and spankier the full version of Quake is. Capisce?
In traditional iD fashion, the registered version of Quake features extra monsters, extra weapons and bloody loads of extra levels - 47 in total. There are the eight levels of the Dimension Of The Doomed, the shareware episode, plus another 24 architecture meisterworks forming the next three arenas - The Realm Of Black Magic, The Netherworld, and The ElderWorld. Complete all these and you'll be granted access to the final level and a personal audience with Shub-Niggurath, the grisly gorelord of the Quake universe. And then to round everything off, there are six, monsterless deathmatch stadiums.
Each episode has its very own look and feel, each one sculpted by iD Software's in-house maestros - John Romero, American McGee, Sandy Peterson and Tim Willits. You've probably already experienced the joys ofi the first episode - the futuristic, grunt-packed SlipGate Complex, the malevolently convoluted Necropolis, the stunning Gloom Keep, and the twisted, nightmarish Door To Cthon. ("Aarrghh... lava!" you probably screamed as you visited the volcano god for the 700th time.) The new levels take the glorious architecture and arcane deathtraps and expand them beyond anything you'd expect. Beyond anything you'd want to expect.
Each episode starts in a futuristic space base, packed with shotgun-wielding grunts and laser-toting enforcers. Electricity hums in the background. The walls are grimy and stained with the salsa of recent bloodbaths. The fluorescent lighting flickers on and off. You think Doom, but then Doom didn't have underwater sewage systems, sons of bitches snipers on high, and the darkest scariest shadows in Christendom.
Tile second episode - The Realm Of Black Magic - comes from the highly warped skull of John Romero, the guy responsible for Doom's more esoteric moments. The world contains a range of castles, from the wiry, multi-layered medieval Ogre Citadel with its stained glass windows and sandstone walls to the Crypt Of Decay where you spend half the time drowning in the moat, and half the time suspended on parapets being pummelled by needle darts. And dying. The penultimate level, Wizard's Manse, is a true work of art, a deadly spiral of walkways and bridges, gradually leading you by the spine further and further up to a massive confrontation with a bundle of fiends.
The Netherworld has been designed by American McGee. Crazy name, crazy levels. In the Vaults Of Zinn every step is a trap. Every lift carries a hundred monsters. Every monster carries a hundred grenades. Every grenade has your name etched on its surface. In sputum. Satan's Dark Delight is another classic. Half the level is flooded. The rest is suspended above oceans of totally deadly lava. Unpredictable lifts drag you towards crushing ceilings. Doors, roof tops and floors crack open at the scariest of moments, upchucking hundreds of zombies, ogres and fiends in your direction. A lovely, juicy suit of armour beckons from a gently lit pedestal. Grab it and the lights snap out, except for a single bolt of lighting from the single shambler who's just teleported in for a chat. In the Tomb Of Terror, the secrets are hidden in the shadows, on the roof tops, or under the lava. Survive all this and you have to face the Wind Tunnels, where huge conduits suck you up and pinball around the level, like a blackened bogey ball flicked around an office.
The final episode is a sprawling nightmare. The Tower Of Despair is a labyrinth of death, with ogres in cages, huge murals on the walls, and a massive corridor maze with collapsing floors and dark, dark shadows. To follow L that is The Elder God Shrine which & sports an excellent zombie graveyard, complete with tombstones and open graves. The final two levels - The Maze Of Pain and Azure Agony - are going to have you praying for a map. Thick viscous shadows, endless overlapping hallways and balconies, armies of vores, shamblers and fiends, and nasty, nasty traps. By the end of this, you'll be on your hands and knees, weeping, snot evacuating from every orifice.
So far, so Doom, you may be mumbling to your mummy. True. Quake is Doom. No doubt about it. But it's Doom pared down to the marrow, the gameplay gristle stripped to white gleaming bone, and then rebuilt, fleshed out with a new body, a new engine, new graphics, and entire limbs of atmosphere. Turn the light off. Stick your headphones on. Disconnect the phone. And scream, and jump, and gibber, and squint, and sweat your way through the levels. You'll never get adrenaline dumps like this front any other game. Take the sound, for example. It is incredible, and 3D spaced for extra realism. Each monster has its own gruesome intestinal howl as a call signal. Spawn make this inhuman squelching sound as they bounce like evil space hoppers around the scenery -the sound of a hundred sweaty bottoms stuck to a hundred plastic chairs. Zombies groan as they reincarnate, squelching as they pull flesh from their arse to throw at you.
Knights, waving their swords at you, make this masturbatory kind of grunt. 'ITie vores scream and shriek like the girly spiders that they are. Ogres roar and metallically ping-pong pipe bombs in your direction. A distant shambler's Explode a demon and you'll hear a sound like Homer Simpson choking on a pork chop. Tumble into a piranha-packed pond and you'll hear their teeth clattering in expectation.
And in the background, the ambient sound beavers on. Churning and clanking of heavy gears mix with the eerie calls of distant ravens.
The NIN cd tracks take e atmosphere and rpens it to weeping point. Disturbing strings melt into the sound of a small girl, himpering and crying in the distance. Heavily reverbed pipe bombs clang almost, but not quite, musically in the dark. A lonely saxophone plucks a few spinal cords from your back. Grunts and obscene, greasy noises churn. Grab the Ring of I Shadows and you'll hear a thousand dead souls whispering and muttering in your ears.
Play a network game and the whole deathmatch level comes alive with screams, yelps, and gushy splatters as lungs and entrails splosh noisily into water. Six or seven different fire-fights can be going on simultaneously. As you home in, shotgun blasts, bouncing grenades, and roaring rockets get louder. Anticipation mounts. You lick your lips as the door groans open. The air fries as you unleash your lightning gun into the crowd. The quad power kicks in, shrieking like a fog horn. Your enemies scatter, trying to escape. You transfix one with a bolt of lightning, and then scythe another as you whip round. You open up with the double barrel shotgun, gibbing your way through the melee. Intestines and torsos slap against the cobblestone walls. A couple of players have sought refuge in a pit below. You lob a few quad-powered grenades into the hole. You hear the hollow clunks and then the gratifying concussion as the bombs go off into a confined space. A waterfall of gibs streaks into the air. As the quad power winds down, you still have time to quickly mince the poor player who's just reincarnated with a yelp next to you.
Having your Quake...
Single-player Quake is no revelation. But the fact that it has supreme graphics, atmosphere, architecture and gameplay seems to have passed many people by. The hype hasn't helped, but it's still unbelievable just how many people are underwhelmed with Quake.
Slick, you say? Quake goes like a Teflon version of a well-greased shovel. Fully customisable, and as well as the multiplayer options, there's jump-in-and-outable network and Internet play. Wow! Can these guys ever write a game... er no, but what they can write is an engine. So what do I think?
First of all, the single-player mode's 'pony'. There just seems to be this feeling of see monster-stop-kill monster-move forward-see monster etc - all very linear. And where's the fantastic Al we were all waiting for - I mean, they're hardly Mensa material now, are they (although the dogs are quite cool)? Remember map 2 where those blocks come out of the floor and into the slots to open the doors? Brilliant, but where's the rest of it? We want Indiana Jones-style levels where you can't stop still for a second, full of collapsing floors, crushy/spinny things and booby traps... but there's bugger all! Where's all these well-designed levels we hear about? Oh, you mean architecturally well-designed? Ahh...
And the multi-player's not that much better. It's just Doom with an extra gun - the grenade launcher. The lightning gun may as well be the plasma gun, and the pistol's been done away with. Hardly ground-breaking stuff. All things considered, if it's a decent engine you want you'd be better off with one of the cheaper CAD packages - then you can design your own levels.
Paul Dittafs opinion
I'm going to get mailed dog shit for this but what the hell. Quake: the most important game ever? I don't think so. Technically flawless Doom clone? Hmmm, that seems more like it.
Quake is cool, Quake is spooky and atmospheric and brilliantly realised and all that, but what Quake isn't is original. Originality is what made Doom kick the gameplaying world in its collective soft bits and take notice. Quake favours multi-player action, fine if you have access to a network or can afford to play it over the net, tough titty otherwise. Better than Duke Nukem? Who gives a shit? Quake is no more playable, it just looks a whole lot better and as anyone will tell you, looks aren't everything. (At least that's what my more sympathetic friends tell me.) I'm willing to wager that many people have played the shareware version and are saying to themselves, "Okay, it looks great, but what is all the fuss about?"
Paul Presley's opinion
Speaking as the UK's official World's Worst Doom Player, you'll understand that my initial reaction to the news that iD were developing an even better version of the popular chainsaw 'em up was to flee in terror, hide under the bedcovers and pretend that computer games didn't exist. What? Another chance to humiliate myself in front of my peers and show to the world how bad I am playing action games? Frankly, I needed it like I needed another series of Goodnight Sweetheart.
But then I played it. And it succeeded where the bitter-sweet adventures of Nicholas Lyndhurst failed - I was hooked. Duke Nukem 3D was a fun diversion from Doom, but there's an atmosphere surrounding Quake that hasn't been felt since the day I first played the classic gore-fest. It's not just the total freedom of movement that creates this, but the fact that it integrates so well with the design of the game. Levels are festooned with walkways at all sorts of heights which suddenly creates a feeling of three-dimensional gameplay that I have never experienced before.
The best games in the world are the ones that cause you to become totally immersed in their world. Quake sucked me in and hasn't let go yet. I'm still crap at it and regularly get my arse kicked in deathmatches, but at least I'm enjoying myself.
Bloody hell... I don't think I've ever seen a game induce passions in quite the way that Quake does and to be completely honest I am getting completely sick of the Quake vs Duke debate which now seems to have been going on forever. When it comes down to it, Quake has a far superior graphics engine - and that's a fact. You can't argue with it, it's irrefutable. As far as everything else goes it's pretty much down to personal opinion of the way the game actually treats you. In Duke you have a character forced upon you, while in Quake you play, well, yourself really. Personally I prefer the Quake experience a lot more... and I'm just saying this because of anything to do with the multi-player aspects of the game (although if you get the opportunity to try it... it really is worth it). I find the Quake experience far more absorbing, frenetic and basically exciting. It's a game that manages to induce a true emotional reaction and it does this by throwing things at you at a pace just beyond that which you would normally be able to handle and in a manner that is more realistic than any other game out there. Sure, I'll agree with anyone that Duke gives you far much more 'to do', but iD's game tickles that bit of your brain that Doom managed to all those years ago.
If you've only played the shareware version of the game it really does have to be said that you don't have a full picture as to what this is all about. The full version of Quake is not only huge, but offers some distinctly different level designs that range from trap-laden passageways that require you to creep around to vast rooms that allow you to just belt around at top whack wasting anything that moves. At the end of the day all that can be said is what we've said before - Quake rocks. Quake is indeed pour hommes.
The Dark Hour
Despite a nice windows 95 front end - bearded General-type details Cplot' to grizzled marine type while spinny 3D logo spins and explodes in the background - The Dark Hour is unreservedly pants. A dour cash-in. What you get for your money are 23 levels. Eight are deathmatch only, the rest are dual purpose. Annoyingly, the levels stand alone - they're not combined into a continuous episode. So each one has to be launched from the front-end which, if you're a little short on ram, can be tedious and affect the frame rate of your Quake.
This wouldn't be too much to bear if the levels were any cop. But they're not. The new textures are really bad -horribly garish and badly-drawn in equal measures. The levels are often over-packed with monsters, poorly paced, and vomit-inducingly designed. There are a couple of nice deathmatch playing fields on there - notably arenam - but there are a few nice deathmatch levels on the Internet and this month's coverdisk. To add insult to injury, MicroForum have padded out the CD with a list of cool Quake Web and clan sites. Woo. A text file.
This is much better, aftershock presents much more value for your readies - 80 deathmatch arenas and 15 new single-player levels, all designed and artworked by Good People Who Know What They Are Doing. The result is a suave, playable, enjoyable add-on for Quake, with gorgeous thrills to be reaped from levels such as Hell Hole, DeathWalk, The Surface, and The Adobe. They're all seamlessly grouped together as one episode, with a new start room and, unlike The Dark Hour, gameplay is balanced (although all are very hard) and the textures are acceptably good-looking.
The only blip really is the size of some of the environments - huge enough to show the turtle on slower systems. Also squidged on the cd is the level editor formally known as Thred, now the official AfterShock 3D design tool. Only the dedicated need apply, however, as it's a scary CAD-style package with lots of buttons and that.
Opsie, Back Into Poo-Poo Land. Keen to capitalise on their success, Head Games obviously thought a compilation of the best Quake utilities would be a smashing idea. Well, it would if it had been done better. What we have here are two good level editors - World-Craft and Thred (again) - some new monsters, some new weapons, and some Quake C patches. Good idea, except that the range of add-ons are poor, the quality is poor, and thev front-end is poor. Buried in among the Cnew monsters' are very early and very bad patches for Quake Test, the three-level beta released yonks ago. The Quake C stuff is old and outdated. A quick romp around stomped.com or on a coverdisk will yield more recent and more effective stuff. The other utilities are in the public domain and available free. Very, very disappointing.
Quake Mission Pack 1: The Scourge Of Armagon
Scourge Is A Whole New Four episode pack for Quake, officially sanctioned by iD. This means that not only do you get a suite of levels designed by the cream of design talent (there are some ex-iD and et-Duke Nukem Level Lords here), but you also get three new monsters, two new weapons, loads of new power-ups, and some really, really cool /Vokem-style environmental effects, such as exploding walls and floating-monorail-lift-things (for want of a better noun). The Rift guys responsible for this have really sat down and worked at it - the levels are superb. For example, the whole first episode (five levels) is set in the dingy, sci-fi SlipGate complex style of the original,
with lots of A/ukem-style Cblow up the reactor' and Cfight the water current' style conundrums. Then the whole pack goes off on one into the scary medieval stuff and culminates in a showdown with a very hard, very unpolite new end-of-level monster. You also get to deal with Centroids (metallic nail-firing scorpions), Gremlins (who steal your weapons and use them against you), and exploding puff ball things.
Added to your armoury is a new proximity-mine launcher and a new laser cannon, which sends ricocheting laser bolts off the scenery. There are also subtle effects like pock marks when you hit the walls, and a host of new scripted interactive scenery bits. One level, The Gauntlet, is just a series of unbelievably cunningly-scripted traps. And there are new power-ups such as the Empathy Shield (which bounces any attack on you back onto the monstie) and the Horn of Conjuring which, er, conjures a Shambier to do your bidding (fighting, obviously - not any weird sexual requests).
Basically, this is supreme. This is completely brilliant. We recommend this.
First there was Wolfenstein 3D for the PC way back when. Then Doom came and literally blew away gamers around the world. There have been clones but now Quake is coming to rumble up some earth and prove to gamers that it has what it takes to conquer all of the clones around. Will it do it? Using far more polygons and higher resolution than Doom ever imagined, Quake looks ultra-realistic. Its lighting, shading and fog effects are eerie and make the Quake environment disturbingly real. From what we've seen and played so far. Quake might just be the next big thing. Will it make it in the world of first-person action games out there?
- MANUFACTURER - GT Interactive
- THEME - 3-D Shooter
- NUMBER OF PLAYERS - Multi
First, there was Quake. And it was good, even over the Internet, but it didn't amount to much more than free-for-alls with strangers. Then Capture the Flag was added, introducing the con cept of team play. Still, it was hard to talk to teammates--nobody has time to type when there's a rocket closing in fast. Quake II arrived and gave the whole thing a nice polish, but the problem remains: How do you simultaneously kill and communicate as a team?
Enter FireTeam, a new multiplayer game from Multitude that's based on the concept of "collaborative play." Here's the thinking: You can play games against your computer any old time, but the reason you're logging on is to play with other people. FireTeam arms each player with a headset microphone for hands-free communication with teammates, three character types to control, and cooperative action games that only get better when you start talking. No chatting, no typing--actual talking, like with your mouth and everything. No buttons will impede the flow of your voice.
You and your four-player team will be able to discuss strategies, call out updates, and shout warnings during the game without ever taking your hands off the controls. In fact, since you can only see objects and enemies in front of your character, you'll want someone to let you know when there's a punk on your six. The sound ain't crystal-dear, but it's roughly as good as a walkie-talkie or an AM radio--and it's certainly no worse than the chats you hear on Mplayer. All you need is a 28.8 modem, Windows 95, and the headset which comes with the game.
The Latency Factor
Live speech, trigger-happy action, 16-player arenas...sounds like a lag-filled exercise in frustration, right? Nope. Instead of creating a game and then figuring out how to make it work online, Multitude built FireTeam around the realities of Internet latency since the beginning. The result is a surprisingly lag-free experience that will shock most Quake vets (but, in all fairness, the action's not nearly as fast as Quake's). The 16-bit hires rendered graphics and crisp sounds don't seem like afterthoughts, either; the professional look and feel of the M-overhead action recalls Diablo or the Crusader series.
Unlike Ultima Online (all story) or Quake (hardly any story at all), FireTeam adventures cover a wide range of interests and settings. For 15 minutes, you could be engaged in a traditional team death match; when the action's over, switch gears for a round of Cun-ball--a cross between football and mass murder. If that's too intense, try Base Tag, FireTeam's take on fort defense, or Capture the Flag, a frantic game with multiple teams and multiple flags. Not only is Multitude creating more scenarios (hinting at games based on movies, books, and TV shows), it's also encouraging players to come up with their own game ideas and providing the tools to make them a reality.
For anyone who's looking for more than just a random online fragfest, Fire-Team's blend of shooter action and player interaction could be just the right combination.
PROTIP: If you're shy, don't choose the scout--not only is she fast, but she can see parts of the field other players can't. You'll have to be the team's "eyes" and talk to them over the microphone.
Despite all the hype and some negative feedback from the early release beta, the finished Quake is an excellent game. The latest product from the creators of Doom is an intense 3D corridor shooter that more than shows off its new play engine.
In Quake, you are the sole survivor of a base overrun by monsters, enemy soldiers, and other creatures. Fortunately, there are numerous weapons, ammo, and other items hidden in the vast levels to help you--along with an equal number of hidden areas and traps. Time to kill or be killed.
The theme is the same as Doom's: Point, shoot, and get to the end of each level alive. What isn't the same is the engine: Unlike Doom, in Quake's true 3D world you can jump, look up and down, and swim. You will make use of these new abilities to cross gaps, find traps, and spot enemies.
Quake looks great, but it's not without flaws. There's smooth, fluid motion and scaling. However, you should have at least a Pentium 133 to run this game with decent resolution: lower than that, things get choppy. Most of the levels have gloomy, gray colors, but this just augments the "odds stacked against you" theme. The monsters look menacing, but up close you can almost see every bulky polygon that went into their construction. They look best at a distance. The sound is awesome. From the ricochet of nails fired from your gun to the grunts and groans of the various monsters, the audio effects are clear and effective. The music by Nine Inch Nails is equally impressive. With harsh, rockin' guitar riffs, and creepy low-key synthesizers, the music goes perfectly with each level and thoroughly enhances the overall atmosphere.
The controls are easy and accurate. Using the keyboard is a breeze, even when you need to execute multiple functions. This is especially helpful in the middle of furious combat, when one wrong move could cost you your life.
In Quake's Wake
Quake may not be the earth-shattering game it was hyped to be, but it's certainly a very enjoyable one. The new game engine and other elements make it both a blast to play and a worthy successor to the Doom throne.
- Approach any box with a red radiation symbol on it with caution; shoot these enough times and they explode.
- When you are up high and enemies are below you, do a little rain dance with the grenade gun. Grenades will bounce around and decimate anything in the room.
- Move slowly through the corridors--chances are you'll come across a damaging booby trap.
- Grenade and rocket launchers send zombies back to the grave for good; other weapons knock them down only temporarily.
Id Software's had a string of hits, from Wolfenstein 3D to Doom and Doom II. What do you do to top Doom's success? How about taking a giant step forward in lighting, graphics, and playability? That's what id's doing with Quake, its latest Doom-style action/adven-ture game.
Like Heretic, Quake takes place in a dark fantasy world, but you'll notice a vast improvement in the detail and realism of the first-person 3D graphics. Quake's 3D world is more varied than Doom's - players can look up or down as they walk, deal with attacks from different directions, and walk on various levels within an area (for example, one player can be on top of a bridge that another player is walking under). Id's still refining the story and gameplay, but the signs point to Quake as the next title in a series of megahits.
Word of id s eagerly anticipated toiiow-up to Doom has been sending killer seismic rumbles through the PC community for years. The wait is over. Quake registers a solid 8.0 on the Richter scale with lightning-fast first-person corridor-shooting action, courtesy of id's new 3D gameplay engine.
You rip through the game's four dark worlds in pursuit of Quake and his army of serial killers, who are wreaking murder and mayhem. Your weapons, which range from a shotgun and axe to a fiend-frying thunderbolt, even the score as you face vicious enemies like rabid Rottweilers and a missile-launching Scrag. If you're into death matches, Quake will also have networked gameplay.
If you thought your PC gaming days were Doomed, get ready to Quake, rattle, and roll. For the latest version of Quake shareware, as well as FAQs, screen shots, links to other cool Quake pages, and Quake-related files like patches and cheats, go to GamePro Online's Quake Web page at: http://www.gamepro.com/GPart/sig/pcgp/quake/Quake.htm
Okay, now, here's the story: Some massive government science project teleport/gateway research has gone wacko and monsters are coming through the gateway. In order to stop the invasion, you end up on the wrong side of that gateway. Your mission is to kick bootie on the evil instigator, and to do so, you have a shotgun and a rocket launcher. Sounds like a job for a Space Marine!
Yes, this is the highly original (hey, it worked for all the Doom sequels!) storyline behind Quake, the highly hyped super-game from the wizards at id. But does it work? Well, first of all, as soon as I got this game, I must admit that I waited until my smoldering carcass had been put to rest quite a few times before I even checked for a storyline. Does that say something for priorities? In other words, most of the people that play this game don't worry about words, as long as there is a warm shotgun and enough shells to introduce yourself to the zombies around the corner.
What's the big deal?
What makes Quake so cool? Lots of stuff. First of all, it is the first game I have seen that can boast to be "truly 3D." In other words, you can now look, swim, and jump in any direction that you can imagine. Levels are much bigger, with several levels of rooms above one another, and bridges are now truly bridges that you can go both under and over, something that you could not have in Doom or any of its sequels.
In addition, monsters are now no longer sprites, or flat images. In Doom, Duke Nukem 3D, or any of the other pretenders, all items and creatures were represented by simple pictures that were pre-rendered, kind of like that cut-out picture of President Reagan that you posed with on your middle school field trip. Typically, sprites limit the range of action that characters and monsters can perform, because an image has to be created for each frame of animation from a variety of angles.
The weaknesses of a sprite system can often be seen when a game allows true-3D movement. In Duke, if you look at a manhole cover from the side, it looks just like it does when you are standing on top of it. In other words, it looks like it is standing on its side. In Quake, every monster and almost every item is represented by a framework of polygons covered with textures, rather like a blocky doll that has been painted to look pretty. This means that when you get hit by the rocket launcher, the guy that popped you sees your arms flailing as you fly across the room. This refinement allows for some incredible (and often funny) scenes of guys staggering back against the wall when hit, or bouncing around like rag dolls when propelled by a rocket.
In addition Quake contains another revolutionary factor -- 16 player TCP/IP multiplayer gaming. This means that you can play Quake across the Internet! Although performance varies by server, I have had some incredible net games with 12 or more players, and you can join or quit at any time in the game, unlike Doom. In addition, local games are easy to set up, and players just join the server by picking its name from the list of available games.
The wizards at id Software know what they are doing, and the things that they did well, they did very well. They made this game to be the king of deathmatch, and it has enough merit to deserve that title. In fact, ever since I got Quake, I've hardly played my old games. Sorry, Duke.
For those of you that have the registered Quake and want to see what can be done with it, check out Stomped and Quake Command. The two of them show some of the amazing things that can be done with QuakeC, the programming language that controls Quake. id released QuakeC, along with most of the QuakeC code for monsters and items in the game, which means that we can make and use new monsters, weapons, and just about anything else imaginable. For instance, various brave souls have already made jeeps, airplanes, flamethrowers, BFGs, mines, pipe bombs a la Duke, jetpacks, new deathmatch rules (capture the flag, tag, and many others) and lots of new levels for Quake. All you have to do is download the new options and run Quake with the files in the command line. You don't even have to alter your game. And if Joe Schmoe can do these kinds of things for free, what can we expect from id? A LOT.
Although you can get away with just the keyboard, I would strongly recommend using a combination of the keyboard and the mouse. Without the mouse for precision aiming, you will probably find yourself on the receiving end of more rockets than you can imagine in deathmatch, especially in the (low-gravity!) secret level provided in the shareware.
In Quake, you can define the standard keys through the menu, as well as mouse and joystick buttons. However, you also have the option of "binding" or redefining keys through the command prompt. Through this, you can not only define the 'A' key to respond as the 'Z' key (or whatever you want), you can also cause any one of many Quake scripts to be executed with a simple key press. These can be special features such as a sniper zoom or x-ray vision (single player only, guys), or a combination of keys, such as the 'rocket jump' or 'quick turnaround.' Many new ones are available on the net every day, and within these configuration scripts you can also set a default configuration of sound, keyboard, and graphical options.
While the default settings for this game are at low resolution, after downloading and installing SciTech's Display Doctor 5.3, I was able to play comfortably at 800x600 resolution on a P133 with 16 MB of RAM. For those that have real muscle under the hood, you can get well above that, but I had a hard time doing so without bringing the game to a jerky halt.
As far as character graphics go, I must say that the nicest thing about the graphics was the little things. The way the hallway is illuminated by a rocket as it streaks on its merry way. The flash of a grenade or rocket going off. The eerie glow of another player when he has picked up Quad Damage or Invincibility powerups, followed by my collapsing to the floor from massive (high velocity) lead poisoning. These are a few of my favorite things.
Quite simply, Quake has some elements that are subtle but amazing. There are no wet footprints or such as in Duke Nukem 3D, but Quake adds the type of effects that add atmosphere without being obtrusive. For instance, when you are underwater, your vision gets somewhat wavy and discolored. In addition, it has the best dynamic lighting I have ever seen in a game. When it comes down to potential, this game has plenty.
Unfortunately, however, there are a few parts of the game that seem exactly that -- potentially good, but not stellar. Monsters and wall textures, while nice from a distance, are pixelated at close range, particularly in the knights. In addition, although each of the 4 episodes maintains its own individual graphical theme and setting, I found that by the end of an episode, I was hoping for more colors and variation in the levels, something that even Doom and definitely Dark Forces did somewhat better.
However, I found that most of these factors only were obvious when I was not involved -- when I was looking at a snapshot, playing at a low difficulty level, or otherwise uninterested. The absorption of the game prevents the player from noticing the flaws as much.
Some of the monsters are spooky, but others are truly frightening. Simple soldiers and rotfish are mere cannon fodder, but when the first fiend leaps out of the shadows towards you, hooked arms tearing at your throat, believe me -- you'll be scared.
In Quake, id Software provides a pretty good range of enemies, the more ferocious of which are very difficult to keep off of your face with any weapon. Each of the bigger monsters has its own fear factor. Ogres throw grenades at a distance and swing a massive chainsaw at close range. Shamblers shoot lightning (really!) until you get close enough, at which point they will bring their massive arms down crushing down on your head. Spawn are amorphous slime creatures that bounce around the walls until they land on you, and when you finally kill them, they explode, usually taking a good part of you with them. When it comes to variety, Quake's got it.
However, one thing Quake has too much of is enemy weaknesses. Once you get over the initial shock, many of the monsters can be defeated through simple evasion tactics. Larger monsters often stop when they cannot get through a door, making themselves good targets as long as you keep moving. Each monster has its own weaknesses, and in some cases, they are just too big. One of the worst is the Vore, which is a mean-looking spider-human creature that shoots homing missiles! Sounds pretty scary, huh? Well it is, until you get used to it. Although its scream and look may be fearsome, with a little practice, they are a very minimal threat. In fact, I think that I have been killed by them less that any other creature, and they are supposed to be one of the most ferocious ones!
What Quake does lack in quality, however, it makes up in quantity. Where several of one monster would not be too bad if taken properly, when several types of enemies attack together, you often find yourself switching weapons like a metronome and firing while running backwards until your back is to the wall. Playing Quake, I recalled the old SNL Deep Thoughts quote about the most dangerous creature in the world: "Some say it's a shark. Some say it's an elephant. I tell them, it's a shark, riding on the back of an elephant, just trampling and eating everything in its way." (paraphrased)
Quite frankly, this concept in design leads to some really tight scrapes. If you want to know what I mean, check out the final elevator on the last level of the second episode in nightmare mode. Just when you think no more creatures could come raining down from the ceiling to cooperate in your destruction, you hear the ominous ringing of a nailgun trap, which, because the elevator has no walls, sprays a flurry of nails in to add to the cacophony. Finally, when the elevator stops and you run out for mercy, you practically bump into two of the fearsome vore, which you have never seen until then. The whole sequence of terror was so gripping that I repeated it three or four times in a row just for the adrenaline rush, something this game does pack.
One final word on the computer AI -- this game was made for deathmatch. Although I found the single-player game entertaining, I felt that the real value of the game is in its multiplayer aspects. Not only is there a wonderful amount of customization that can be done, but the levels and weapons are well configured for DM. In the heat of battle, you start to forget AI, graphics, and interfaces, and you revert to your basic survival instincts -- kill or be killed. This game has (by far) the best deathmatching that I have ever seen in a game of its type, so any flaws in the AI were soon forgotten.
Not bad; about the same as Doom, Hexen, or any other id game. The only gripe I had about this was the fact that I could not enter some characters. For instance, if I decided to install into the "C:\My Documents\Quake" directory (which would be abbreviated to "c:\mydocu~1\quake" in Win 95 DOS), it would not allow me because of the tilde character. Although this is a picky gripe, I hope that we are given a little more freedom in the future.
You name it, you've got it. Quake provides two ways to customize your gaming experience, the menu and the command line. While most superficial changes can be performed from the game menu, the drop-down command prompt allows the user to do just about anything. You can enter cheat codes, redefine keys or sequences thereof, run scripts, and a variety of other actions. Although the hands-on customization that is usually done at the command prompt may be undesirable to some, I felt that it gave me a very good hands-on interface to all game settings and I hope that this kind of 'option' is provided in future games.
According to the specifications, a Pentium is required, and I would recommend one with a speed in the three-digit range. In addition, the use of SciTech's shareware Display Doctor, which will give you more resolution levels and faster video, is highly recommended.
Quake is fun. Quake is cool. Quake is the best game of its type I have ever seen. Quake won't let me sleep at night. However, Quake could be better. As I played it, I couldn't help but think, 'Wow, imagine what this place will look like when they are done!' With all its gee-whiz features and kick-butt style, Quake is still, in my opinion, a work in progress. Quake is more than the Doom III that some people have labeled it to be. However, it is also not the leap ahead that Doom was to Castle Wolfenstein. It just promises that there will be such a leap.
Quake provides a wide array of features and capabilities, and if id decides to give its next game (tentatively called Quake II) the kind of polish that can be seen in Dark Forces, it will be that quantum leap ahead of Doom. However, I cannot rate it as "truly revolutionary," simply "very cool." And if there are any Quake junkies out there wanting to make me take that last comment back, you're gonna have to reinforce it with some hot lead. I give Quake a 91, because while it deserves a permanent place on my shelf, it is just not quite the breathtaking powerhouse that we were promised. While the many features (Internet multiplay, good configuration, true 3D, etc.) make it an instant classic, I see better stuff coming down the pipeline. Just you wait and see.
Snapshots and Media
- Codename Tenka
- Doom 3
- Duke Nukem 3D
- Far Cry Instincts: Predator
- Final Doom
- Halo: Combat Evolved
- Return to Castle Wolfenstein
- Return to Castle Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory
- Return to Castle Wolfenstein: Tides of War
- Soldier of Fortune 2
- Ultimate Doom
- Wolfenstein 3D
- Codename: Eagle
- Descent 3
- Half Life: Opposing Force
- Hidden & Dangerous
- Nerf Arena Blast
- Operation Flashpoint: Red River
- Project IGI: I'm Going In
- Tactical Ops: SWAT