To continue on with QuakeCon coming up, I’ve decided to take a look at the Quake series. Now, while all Quake games contain multi-player, the focused competitive play results to Quake III Arena & Quake Champions, so there’s no need to talk about the multi-player for each single-player-focused Quake game that I’ll be reviewing for this years QuakeCon. That’s a lot of Quakes!
Essentially, Quake 1 is just Doom with faintly fully 3D graphics and a semi-medieval setting, representing H. P. Lovecraft with all the supernatural designs and creatures looking like they came out of those fantasy stories. Take those two things out, Quake isn’t much of a different shooter, especially by level design.
You have to get through 4 episodes that contain 7-8 short levels, where you need to find the exit in each stage, most of the time requiring you to find different colored keys, representing the path to opening required paths. Meanwhile, there’s an array of enemies to kill with an axe, thunderbolt rifle, or a light and heavy versions of machine guns, shotguns and explosives.
You’ll have levels that contain water to swim in or hazardous obstacles, but mostly, these environments are either a castle or facility. Like Doom, there will be secrets you can find, giving your character’s health, ammo and armor replenishing, occasionally finding temporary power-ups like damage boosts or toxic immunity.
There might be little tweaks here and there, but there really isn’t a massive distinction in this like there would be for to coming sequels. Not everything is a great change, with the axe being a weak melee tool compared to the chainsaw in Doom. I would never envision myself using the axe as it never seems to be effective for any situation compared to the guns. Now I haven’t played the first two Doom games in a long time, so I don’t recall how they handle challenge, but Quake gets ridiculous for certain enemies.
Most specifically, this mutated yeti creature in the photo above (I know these foes have names, but it’s really not that important to the game), will charge at you fast while lighting up electrical bolts. I’ve died so many times trying fight these things on the normal difficulty and it’s borderline frustrating. Later, I’ll fight bouncing exploding slime that will irritate the crap out of me, eventually getting into situations where I’ll get into a room infested with them.
If you die, you’ll have to restart the whole level unless you save very often. I still had fun playing Quake 1 quite a bit. Nothing might be new, but killing crazy monsters with big fantasized weaponry is always a welcomed factor in video games. Quake doesn’t bear much difference from Doom, which is both a good and bad thing. Exploring the levels for secrets, keys and things to kill is still fun, mainly out of that special love you get only from playing an Id Software shooter.
The inconsistent balance and lack of distinction makes the original Quake a little less special. I know back in the day, seeing these graphics were revolutionary to gaming. They certainly were to me, playing Mario 64 as a 4-year-old, but games can age in a bad way. Doesn’t help that the two boss battles are lame, giving you an easy repetition of action instead of a test with skills and wits.
Quake is still simple shooter fun, though like Doom, the later games have rendered the original obsolete in quality for more than balance, level design and even the minimalist story. Though, it’s great to play in retrospect of first-person shooter history and you will have fun. I just think the sequels are better, which will be elaborated on when I get to reviewing them.
As it stands, Quake 1 is still fun, years later. Filled with rich atmosphere, big guns and a lot of enemies on-screen, the faults prevent it from being something amazing, but to this day, you’ll have a “Good” time experiencing this short shooter for only $4.99.
Quake II Review: https://pondspress.wordpress.com/2018/08/09/quake-ii-review/