Quake is a first-person shooter video game, developed and published by id Software in 1996. It is the first game in the popular Quake series. In the game, players must find their way through various maze-like, medieval environments while battling a variety of monsters using a wide array of weapons.
The successor to id's Doom series, Quake built upon the technology and gameplay of its predecessor in many ways. Unlike the Doom engine before it, the Quake engine offered full real-time 3D rendering and early support for 3D acceleration through OpenGL. After Doom helped popularize multiplayer deathmatches, Quake added various multiplayer options. Online multiplayer became increasingly common, with the QuakeWorld update and software such as QuakeSpy making the process of finding and playing against other competitors on the Internet far easier and more reliable. Various multiplayer mods were developed including Team Fortress and Capture the flag.
The game received much acclaim on release and its commercial success led to several sequels, starting with Quake II, which abandoned the gothic stylings of the original for a science fiction theme. Quake has been an influence on user mods and machinima.
In Quake 's single player mode, players explore and navigate to the exit of each dark and Gothic level, facing monsters and secret areas along the way. Usually there are buttons to press or keys to collect in order to open doors before the exit can be reached. Reaching the exit takes the player to the next level. Before the start level, there is a set of three pathways with easy, medium, and hard skill levels. The fourth skill level, "Nightmare", was "so bad that it was hidden, so people won't wander in by accident";the player must drop through the water before the Episode 4 entrance and jump into a secret passage. Quake 's single-player campaign is organized into four individual episodes of about eight levels each (each including a secret level, one of which is a "low gravity" level that challenges the player's abilities in a different way).
As items are collected, they are carried to the next level, each usually more challenging than the last. If the player's avatar dies, he must restart at the beginning of the level. Games may be saved at any time. Upon completing each episode, the player is returned to the hub Start level, where another episode can be entered. Each episode starts the player from scratch, without any previously collected items. Episode I (which formed the shareware or downloadable demo version of Quake) has the most traditional ideology of a boss in the last level. The ultimate objective at the end of an episode is to recover a magic rune. After all of the runes are collected, the floor of the Start opens up to reveal an entrance to the End level which contains the final boss.
In multiplayer mode, players on several computers connect to a server (which may be a dedicated machine or on one of the player's computers), where they can either play the single-player campaign together in co-op mode, or play against each other in multiplayer. When players die in multiplayer mode, they can immediately respawn but lose any items that were collected. Similarly, items that have been picked up previously respawn after some time, and may be picked up again. The most popular multiplayer modes are all forms of deathmatch. Deathmatch modes typically consist of either free-for-all (no organization or teams involved), one-on-one duels, or organized teamplay with two or more players per team (or clan). Teamplay is also frequently played with one or another mod. Monsters are not normally present in teamplay, as they serve no purpose other than to get in the way and reveal the positions of the players.
The gameplay in Quake was considered unique for its time because of the different ways the player can maneuver through the game. For example: bunny hopping or strafe jumping can be used to move faster than normal, while rocket jumping enables the player to reach otherwise-inaccessible areas at the cost of some self-damage. The player can start and stop moving suddenly, jump unnaturally high, and change direction while moving through the air. Many of these non-realistic behaviors contribute to Quake 's appeal. Multiplayer Quake was one of the first games singled out as a form of electronic sport. A notable participant was Dennis Fong who won John Carmack's Ferrari 328 at the Microsoft-sponsored Red Annihilation tournament in 1997.
In the single-player game, the player takes the role of a protagonist known as Ranger who was sent into a portal in order to stop an enemy code-named "Quake". The government had been experimenting with teleportation technology and developed a working prototype called a "Slipgate"; the mysterious Quake compromised the Slipgate by connecting it with its own teleportation system, using it to send death squads to the "Human" dimension in order to test the martial capabilities of Humanity. The sole surviving protagonist in "Operation Counterstrike" is Ranger, who must advance, starting each of four episodes from an overrun human military base, before fighting his way into other dimensions, reaching them via the Slipgate or their otherworld equivalent. After passing through the Slipgate, Ranger's main objective is to collect four magic runes from four dimensions of Quake; these are the key to stopping the enemy later discovered as Shub-Niggurath and ending the invasion of Earth.
The game consists of 28 separate "levels" or "maps", grouped into four episodes. Each episode represents individual dimensions that the player can access through magical portals (as opposed to the technological Slipgate) that are discovered over the course of the game. The various realms consist of a number of gothic, medieval, and lava-filled caves and dungeons, with a recurring theme of hellish and satanic imagery reminiscent of Doom (such as pentagrams and images of demons on the walls). The latter is inspired by several dark fantasy influences, most notably that of H. P. Lovecraft. Dimensional Shamblers appear as enemies, the "Spawn" enemies are called "Formless Spawn of Tsathoggua" in the manual, the end boss of the first episode is named Chthon, and the final boss is named Shub-Niggurath (though actually resembling a Dark Young. Some levels have Lovecraftian names, such as the Vaults of Zin and The Nameless City. Originally, the game was supposed to include more Lovecraftian bosses, but this concept was scrapped due to time constraints.
Quake was ported to the Nintendo 64 by Midway Games. The console port required some compromises because of the limited CPU power and ROM storage space for maps. The N64 version is missing The Grisly Grotto (E1M4), The Installation (E2M1), The Ebon Fortress (E2M4), The Wind Tunnels (E3M5), The Sewage System (E4M1) and Hell's Atrium (E4M5) levels. It also does not use the "START" map where the player chooses a difficulty level and an episode; the difficulty level is chosen when starting the game, and all of the levels play in sequential order from The Slipgate Complex (E1M1) to Shub Niggurath's Pit (END). The Nintendo 64 version, while lacking the cooperative multiplayer mode, includes two player deathmatch. All six of the deathmatch maps from the PC version are in the Nintendo 64 port, and an exclusive deathmatch map, The Court of Death, is also included.