Quake III Arena - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Dominic Tarason)

One of the last of the Id Software old guard is parting company with the studio soon. Tim Willits wasn’t part of the original team of founders, but was there early enough to be credited as level designer on 1995’s Ultimate Doom and have a credit in almost everything since. After working as a designer and creative director on the likes of Quake, Doom 3 and Rage, and acting as studio director through the release of Rage 2, he’s left a mark on the FPS genre as we know it. After QuakeCon next week he’ll say his goodbyes and announce his plans for the future.



This year's QuakeCon will go heavy on the Doom, the famed FPS that preceded the big bring-your-own-computer show's namesake. The reason is that 2019 is, somewhat loosely, the 25th anniversary of the original Doom—it was released in December 1993—and Bethesda isn't going let the "Year of Doom" go uncelebrated.

QuakeCon 2019 "will include all-new Doom-inspired activities, events, exclusives, developer panels, hands-on demos, new information about Doom Eternal, and a few surprises we aren’t quite ready to talk about," Bethesda said. "All while continuing to feature everything you already love about QuakeCon." 

The centerpiece will once again be the huge BYOC LAN party, but registration is being handled slightly differently this year: Instead of picking a seat when you sign up, BYOC seat selection will take place at a later, unannounced date. As always, the show will also include panels, hands-on with various Bethesda games—maybe Wolfenstein: Youngblood will make an appearance?—redonkulous case mods, swag, and other stuff.

QuakeCon 2019 will run July 25-28 in Dallas, Texas. Registration for the BYOC action or the new "QuakeCon Done Quick" pass with priority entry to all Main Stage events and early access to the exhibit hall on Saturday, will open at 10 am ET on April 11, while general admission entry is free.


Great moments in PC gaming are short, bite-sized celebrations of some of our favorite gaming memories.  

The first-person shooters of the 1990s were fast-paced, but Quake seemed faster than anything before it. Truly 3D levels, mouselook, a bouncy regular jump even if you weren't abusing rocket-jumps—it added up to a zippiness that felt powerful and new. 

Clever level design solved the Sonic problem of having areas full of secrets but a character who only feels good at top speed. There's often one particular key or something you need but there's also a convenient loop back through a section of the level so you can barrel around looking for things you missed, shooting suspicious patches of wall texture or swimming under bridges, during which you naturally find a secret or two before discovering that gold key or whatever.

When you hit a boss fight it still doesn't slow down. Chthon emerges from the lava and instead of standing in one spot shooting away at his health bar you keep moving, racing his fireballs to flip switches just like you do when looping through an ordinary level, only now you're lowering pylons into position then electrocuting the big jerkbag of an elder god.

There are plenty of other things about Quake to celebrate, like the soundtrack and the multiplayer and the mods, but let's not forget Chthon. Fighting him sets you up for the finale, which is another puzzle boss who can't be shot, and it's also a great capstone for the playstyle it's taught you.

And then at the end of the level when it's tallying your score and number of secrets you get to see Chthon's gibs squirting all over the screen. Quake knew what we wanted and it delivered. 

QUAKE - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Dominic Tarason)

There have been some lovely old-school shooters recently, but 3D Realms reason that the only way to get true retro authenticity is to build new games to old standards. Wrath: Aeon Of Ruin bears a strong family resemblance to the original Quake, which makes sense considering it’s being produced by KillPixel, a crew of veteran Quake mappers and modders using the tools they’re familiar with. It’s a team I’m familiar with, having been enjoying their work for years, putting Wrath high on my most wanted list. The game is due this summer, and you can see the debut trailer below.



This is Quake, by the way, not whatever it is that 3D Realms is teasing now.

3D Realms, best known as the last company able to do something good with Duke Nukem, currently has a Build engine-powered shooter called Ion Maiden on Steam Early Access. By all reports it's really good—user reviews on Steam are "overwhelmingly positive"—but what makes it interesting is the use of the Build engine, which is true retro-tech: It was used for Duke Nukem 3D and the original Shadow Warrior way back in the mid-90s, and Ion Maiden is the first game to make use of it in nearly two decades. 

3D Realms is also working on a new game based on the Quake engine in partnership with 1C Company, and yes, that would be the original Quake from 1996—a Build engine contemporary. That little factoid was revealed last fall, along with absolutely no other information: No name, no release target, no platform information, no nothing. But that will soon change. 

Is that logo ringing any bells? That's not a hint that I know what's up, by the way: I think it looks very vaguely Quake-like but I can't see Bethesda green-lighting a remake by anyone but id Software. But games like Ion Maiden and Dusk have proven that shooters don't need to be built on bleeding-edge tech to be great, and I'm excited to finally find out what 3DR has cooking. We'll let you know when we know.

QUAKE - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Dominic Tarason)

A raytraced Quake 2 might be a fun retro showcase of shiny new hardware, but Quake 1.5 is what you really want to be playing right now. Assembled by modder “bloodshot12” (although its full credits are extensive), it’s a cocktail of mods for Id’s original Quake that aims to retain its aesthetic, but upgrade everything else. That means new, detailed weapon models, monsters (some from the excellent Arcane Dimensions), levels and more. Today’s release is technically a beta, but well worth playing, and dead easy to set up too. Find it on Mod DB, or check out a trailer below if the fancy new boss above isn’t exciting enough.


DOOM II - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Dominic Tarason)

We’re just shy of Halloween here and the stars are aligning, allowing unholy powers to warp Doom into strange, near-unrecognisable forms through the powerfully dark act of modding>. Out tonight is Total Chaos, a survival horror mod so grand in its ambition that it leaves almost nothing recognisable as ‘Doom’, with detailed 3D environments and modern horror style. More traditional but still impressive is an early demo of The Crimson Deed, a vampire-themed dungeon crawl. Check out trailers for both below, plus some Quake-related surprises from 3D Realms. (more…)

QUAKE - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Rich McCormick)

quake-champs-headerUpdate Night is a fortnightly column in which Rich McCormick revisits games to find out whether they’ve been changed for better or worse.>

If, for some reason, you needed reminding of Quake Champions 90s heritage, then you need look no further than Anarki. One of Quake Champions 12 playable characters, Anarki (1) rides a hovering skateboard, (2) has a pink-dyed mohawk, (3) sports a pair of space JNCOs tucked into his metal legs, and (4) talks like the galaxy s spaciest stoner dude.

He s the video game version of The Simpsons Poochie: an attitude-by-numbers toon cooked up by an undead focus group whose members all died when Papa Roach released their first album. But he s not even the most 90s thing about Quake Champions. That would be the game itself, a resolutely old-school arena shooter that in full flow feels as fast and fluid as Quake 3 did in 1999. (more…)


1996: the year of both classic FPS Quake and of the famous viral video of a dancing virtual baby, which spawned an equally famous GIF that was emailed across offices around the world. Joshua Skelton, lead artist on first-person rogue-like Delver, has now combined the two, as you can see above.

As he says in the tweet, it's not all about getting the babies into the game: he's creating a tool to convert GIFs into in-game sprites. It's apparently quite simple to pull off. "I just renamed baby.spr to soldier.mdl! The Quake engine treats 2D sprites and 3D meshes (and 3D maps!) generically as models and they can (mostly) be used interchangeably," he says.

Another Twitter user replied with an important question: what if you shoot your grenade launcher at the babies? Thankfully nothing, Skelton says: they just keep on dancing.

My money is on a smiling Robert Redford making it into the game next.

QUAKE - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Dominic Tarason)

Quake Champions

The game has hit some bumps along the way, but arena shooter revival Quake Champions has made steady, sure steps towards its goal to revitalise the genre over the past few months. Today’s update brings the game just that little bit closer to the ideal, introducing bots for practice play (and to fill empty slots if someone bails from your team), and a gratuitously detailed gore system worthy of Doom 4. Rockets, chainsaws, machineguns and more will have visibly different effects on your now-mechanically-separated opponent’s body. Squishy.



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