#417 Quake III Arena

Posted: 9th April 2017 by Jeroen in Games
Tags: , , , ,

593rd played so far

Genre: First-Person Shooter
Platform: PC
Year of Release: 1999
Developer: id Software
Publisher: Activision

A bit of a jump in genre here. Somewhere around 2000 – and obviously, in case of this game, in 1999, several publishers and developers realised that the main thing that kept people playing FPS games was the multiplayer – some played single player, but the long term attraction was playing against friends, or random strangers online.

Several franchises shifted to an online model, dispensing with the often more expensive single player element. One where we’ll only see the multiplayer component is the Unreal series, but we have previously discussed Quake and its sequel, and this game really embraced multiplayer for the series more than anything ever before.

Our Thoughts

So with a multiplayer focused game, the single player parts are, as you’d expect, mostly play against bots. The nice thing about it is that this isn’t done by just dropping you in a large group. Instead, it slowly builds up, first putting you in a smaller arena against a single, easy bot. It then starts ramping up the difficulty of the bots, the complexity of the area (as well as items available in them) and, at times, the number of bots you play against.

It creates a decent learning curve that meant I never really felt lost. I had to do a lot more learning on my feet, as there was pretty much no hand holding, but the it was never difficult enough that this became a problem.

One of the big items that surprised me while playing is how much sound mattered. I tried to use it to locate enemies in the arena several times and either tracked them down or got ready to face them. Giving the bots shouts on some events helped with that as well, creating more of an atmosphere. It’s something that falls away as more bots joined the game, but it’s still a welcome set up.

Final Thoughts

As a multiplayer averse gamer who prefers story over action, there isn’t as much meat on the bones of this game – although there was a fair amount more than I expected. There is a bunch of variety in the game, it’s challenging in enough places, but in the end, unless you play against others, you’ll get bored soon enough.

  1. […] the case, it’s the multiplayer in the series that really made a dent, and (in the vein of Quake III Arena) got its own series of games. This is the sequel to the first in that series, for whatever […]