This series originally ran on our Steam curation group in August 2016.
This week is QuakeCon, and this year happens to be the 20th anniversary of the venerable Quake franchise, so there’s really no better time to take another look at the series. For the first week of August I’ll be looking at the titles in the Quake Collection with an eye towards how they hold up in the modern era. Spoiler alert, you should absolutely get this pack if you don’t have it, but I’ll get into the details of how they work and stack up against each other. If there’s any justice in the world, you can pick it up for a discount this weekend in honor of QuakeCon.
- Day 1: Quake
- Day 2: Quake Mission Pack 1: Scourge of Armagon
- Day 3: Quake Mission Pack 2: Dissolution of Eternity
- Day 4: Quake II
- Day 5: Quake II: The Reckoning
- Day 6: Quake II: Ground Zero
- Day 7: Quake III Arena
- Day 8: Quake III: Team Arena
It turns out that everything that made Quake such a landmark series when it was released makes it just as fun to revisit now. The incredible speed and freedom of movement, coupled with satisfying weapons and effects, elevate these games to eternal classics. Even the graphics don’t hold them back that much. The murky, chunky textures of Quake I fit the dark, eldritch themes perfectly. The warm, saturated look of Quake II keeps it in a timeless comic-book look. And the smooth lines and bright textures of Quake III are great for such an intense deathmatch experience.
The only thing that really holds any of the titles in this pack back are the technical issues that I’ve mentioned. Quake I might only be playable through mods for you, and is required for any sort of multiplayer. Quake I and II are both missing their excellent soundtracks, which can also be remedied via modding but is an unfortunate hassle. All of the games listed here are worth a look, though the second expansion packs tend to be steps down in their own ways and Team Arena is little more than a curiosity these days.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this look back at the Quake series as much as I’ve enjoyed playing them. And if you still don’t own them for some reason, you’ve got another thirty minutes to fix that!