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Quake III: Arena

aka: Q3, Q3A, Quake 3, Quake Arena, Quake III: Arena (Elite Edition)

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Critic Reviews 87% add missing review

Spel för Alla (10 out of 10)

Quakeserien förnyas och tar klivet in i multiplayer-spelets alla möjligheter med Quake III. Snygg grafik och högt speltempo gör det till ett suveränt spel som det är svårt att slita sig från.

Feb 2000 · Windows

GameGenie ( )

The first six tiers consist of four levels each. Each level contains a mixture of computer-controlled bots that are sure to give you a run for your money. After you've slaughtered all of the computer-controlled bots, it's time for the main event….frag your friends, and believe me, this is where the fun is.

2000 · Windows · read review

Personal Computer World (5 out of 5)

There’s no doubt that this game is fantastic, but the crucial question remains as to whether it is better than Unreal Tournament featured a couple of issues ago in PCW. The answer is probably yes, but only just. Quake III Arena is death match at its most refined. You don’t get quite as many features as you do in Unreal Tournament, but for sheer fast, furious and unadulterated rage against your fellow gamer, there is simply no equal to Quake III Arena.

Mar 2000 · Windows · read review

PC Accelerator (10 out of 10)

Quake 3 Arena is certifiably a masterpiece in terms of what it has set out to achieve. You won’t find any new game concepts, nor any new weapon ideas (only the grenade launcher and marvelous plasma-rocket firing BFG10K weren’t released in the Q3Test), nor the most perfect deathmatching Bots. What you will find, however, is a tangible, yet indescribable “feel” of solidity that gives Q3A’s physics such a compelling edge over the competition. Weapon hits feel like weapon hits, as your character feels like a solid person, not a flighty cartoon. You’ll also find levels designed with fighting in mind, not some preconceived notion restricting a level’s flow. They’re created to be gibbing arenas, balanced for fighting. They use water, lava and slime sparingly; they judge space to be relative to the skill level of the combatants; they dispense with slow-moving elevators in favor of fast-paced accelerators and bounce pads; they work.

Feb 2000 · Windows · read review

Game.EXE (5 out of 5)

Зато, несмотря на все недостатки, налицо ultimate deathmatch game. Если я захочу играть с кем-то в традиционный дефматч, чтобы по-быстрому выяснить, кто из нас отец, а кто сынок - я, безусловно, выберу Q3A, забыв даже о DOOM'е. И неважно, будет это локальная сеть или Интернет, вердикт однозначен. И игра эта обоснуется на ваших винчестерах надолго. Как твердыня, столп и оплот вечности, эдакий эталон метра, применяемый в детском саду для измерения длины пиписек. И в этом качестве ей гарантированна слава и, возможно, титулы "Игра года" и даже "Игра века". И спасибо товарищу Кармаку за наше счастливое детство.

Jan 2000 · Windows

Next Generation ( )

The best deathmatch yet. Period. End of story. If you want single-player or a storyline, buy Half-Life. If you want great DM and near-infinite expandability, Quake III is the best in the business.

Feb 2000 · Windows · read review

IGROMANIA (9.9 out of 10)

Мы получили свою долгожданную фрагобойню. Мы получили качественный, коммерчески успешный, технологически передовой, геймплейно весёлый, но абсолютно идеологически пустой продукт. Quake 2 получил своё логическое продолжение. Зло выродилось в комикс.

Jan 2000 · Windows · read review

Hacker (96 out of 100)

Quake 3 će biti igran kao i svaki drugi dio Quake serijala do iznemoglosti, barem od strane recenzenta i bližnjih mu. Doduše, neki su se priklonili UT-u, no brzo ću i njih dovesti u red. Bilo da ste ljubitelj prekrasne grafike, gotičke atmosfere, odličnog i intrigantnog single play napretka ili multiplayer tabačine, bilo da ste revni tester hardvera ili jednostavno revni igrač koji igra sve živo, vjerujte - svijet računalnih igara odsad ćete dijeliti na vrijeme prije i poslije Quakea 3!

Dec 1999 · Windows

Jeuxvideo.com (19 out of 20)

Grosse claque pour tout le monde. Le duel Unreal-Quake est maintenant commencé et pour moi, c'est Quake qui l'emportera en offrant plus de gameplay, plus de bestialité, des besoins machine moins gourmands et le tout enrobé dans des niveaux bien plus jolis. En bref, un chef d'oeuvre par les maîtres du genre.

Dec 15th, 1999 · Windows · read review

Svenska PC Gamer (95 out of 100)

Är då Arena värt att köpa för singelplayerupplevelsen? Saret är, tack och lov, helt klart positivt. Det är ingen tvekan om att man för att få ut det bästa ur den måste spela på Internet eller LAN, men det är fortfarande en tillräckligt stor utmaning (särskilt CTF) för att de modemlösa ska kunna njuta också.

Jan 2000 · Windows

games xtreme (9.4 out of 10)

Quake 3, one hell of a good game, looks damn pretty when you slap all the features on and plays like a demon. Test your skills vs. those bots and see how you do online, theres only 1 way to improve on a game like this, but I can't tell what it is!

Feb 23rd, 2000 · Windows · read review

Game Over Online (94 out of 100)

This game is very fun and quite addicting. Past that there is not much to say. Little touches are what make this game and keep you coming back for more. I think that the aforementioned awards really added to the fun and I had a great time bragging to my friends after we had finished playing (at 4:00am). The feeling I had when I played this game was the same I had when Quake and Quake 2 first came out. The graphics are smooth and fast, the sound well done and the gameplay outstanding. I can hardly wait to finish this review so that I can return to playing. If you're a Quake nut or love deathmatch, I recommend picking this up, it's a sure win. Well done ID software.

Dec 15th, 1999 · Windows · read review

PC Action (Germany) (94 out of 100)

Quake 3 Arena spielt sich genau so, wie ich es von einem brillanten Egoshooter erwarte. Schnelle, wilde Action, geniale Grafik, ausbalancierte Waffen und abwechslungsreiche Levels. Die Beschränkung auf zwei Mehrspielermodi finde ich persönlich nicht so prickelnd, aber ich bin mir sicher, dass bereits nach wenigen Wochen geniale Modi wie das altbekannte Rocket Arena die Onlineszene in Ekstase versetzen werden. Quake 3 Arena ist DER Pflichtkauf für alle 3D-Shooterfans.

Dec 1999 · Windows

PC Player (Germany) (93 out of 100)

Quake 3 lässt den Traum eines jeden Shooter-Fan in Erfüllung gehen und wird noch lange für Schlagzeilen sorgen. Für mich jetzt schon das Spiel des Jahres 2000.

Dec 1999 · Windows

PC PowerPlay Australia (93 out of 100)

When all is said and done, the dust has settled and the gibs mopped up, Quake III: Arena is the ultimate first-person shooter that we were all expecting. Of course it’s going to be compared and contrasted with Unreal Tournament, but trying to compare these two games is like trying to decide who’s better — Elle Macpherson or Cindy Crawford. You simply can’t do it — they’re both equally exquisite. There are a few minor issues with QIII’s sometimes-cheap hot AI, but they’re only noticeable because the rest of the game is almost flawless. If you don’t have Quake III Arena yet, go get it now… oh, but don’t forget to upgrade your PC on the way home as well.

Feb 2000 · Windows · read review

IGN (9.3 out of 10)

If there's one thing that can be said about Quake III: Arena is that it's incredibly addictive, no matter how shallow and simple the gameplay may be, and no matter how canned the arsenal is. Of course, Quake has never tried to disguise itself as a thinking man's game. Although I would have liked more gameplay types and a larger variety of weapons, there's absolutely nothing that I can fault Quake III: Arena for. It accomplishes exactly what id set out to do when creating the thirds installment. I must admit that even with the massive gameplay options in Unreal Tournament, I'll always come back to Quake III: Arena for my deathmatch fix. There's no other shooter that comes close to the look and feel of Quake III. I've already reserved a permanent area on my hard drive specifically for Quake III, because it's going to be there for a while. It takes a powerful machine to run it correctly, but it's well worth it.

Dec 10th, 1999 · Windows · read review

GameSpot (9.2 out of 10)

All things considered, it isn't a stretch to call Quake III Arena an outstanding game. But whether it's superior to its rival Unreal Tournament is less certain. If you're interested in sophisticated team-play modes like those featured in Unreal Tournament, then Quake III Arena comes up short. However, Quake III Arena provides the ultimate deathmatch experience. If deathmatch is the particular style of play you're interested in, then Arena is your game.

Dec 16th, 1999 · Windows · read review

Gaming Age (A-)

Even with all this polish, Quake 3 Arena isn't the final word in deathmatch gaming. I would be more comfortable to say it is the final word in "old school" deathmatches. Quake 3 Arena is still one of the best titles currently out on the market.

1999 · Windows · read review

Entertainment Weekly (A-)

Jaw-dropping visuals, white-knuckle gameplay, and robust multiplayer support have made the million-selling Quake series the king of the first-person-shooter genre. Quake III pushes the mayhem even further by sending the player into online futuristic arenas to rise through the ranks as a one-man (or one-woman) army. Though there’s nothing like playing against live, unpredictable human opponents, the single-player option that lets you fight against artificial players simulates the online experience. The gorgeous graphics come with a price: Expected minimum system requirements are a Pentium 200, 64MB of RAM, and a 3-D accelerator card. Who said death matching in style was cheap?

Nov 12th, 1999 · Windows · read review

PC Jeux (91 out of 100)

Quake III Arena s'avère incontournable, même s'il dispose de quelques lacunes.

Jan 2000 · Windows · read review

GameSpy (90 out of 100)

Tremendous deathmatch game, lacking in innovations to gameplay but packing the most beautiful game engine and art we've seen.

Dec 9th, 1999 · Windows · read review

FiringSquad (90 out of 100)

Quake 3 is the kind of game that people will run out and upgrade their computers for; James built a dual Celeron system solely to take advantage of Quake 3's SMP support. So the bots aren't that great - no big loss; we didn't get Quake 3 to play by ourselves. If you want single player, skip Quake 3 and pick up a copy of Half Life or System Shock 2. To the naysayers who proclaim that there's nothing innovative or new in Quake 3, we say that you're beating a dead horse. Even id staffers would probably admit to that accusation with a "guilty as charged." So what does Quake 3 give you? It's quite simple: the utter refinement of deathmatch, and the ultimate multiplayer shooter experience - nothing more, nothing less.

Dec 16th, 1999 · Windows · read review

Computer and Video Games (CVG) (9 out of 10)

Overall we can assure that Q3A is the most amazing game to look at, with a totally honest, in your face appeal you canit deny. Connoisseurs will go for Unreal or Opposing Force to explore new strategies. Firing rockets at people's feet, and jumping to avoid them, has got to get boring sooner or later. UT and OF don't need to worry about that - they're already succeeding in ways Q3A doesn't come close to touching. But as the ultimate incarnation of the idis seminal FPS series, Q3A delivers many times more than we hapless fools were led to believe from the tests. And thatis an understatement.

Aug 15th, 2001 · Windows · read review

Power Unlimited (9 out of 10)

QIII: Arena is de beste en mooiste Deathmatch game voorhanden: instant fun en een hardcore frag-feest! Echter, de slordige A.I. van de bots en de beperkte Teamplay modes maken dat deze game 'overall' lager scoort dan Unreal Tournament. Newbies kunnen deze game ook beter laten liggen maar de Quake fans zullen tevreden zijn. De honderden MODS, skins en models die dagelijks op het Internet verschijnen, houden je wel weer zoet tot Quake IV.

Feb 2000 · Windows

Gamereactor (Sweden) (9 out of 10)

Genom Quake 3 har id Software bevisat att de, tillskillnad från så många andra utvecklare, förstår sin målgrupps behov och lyssnar till dess önskemål.

May 9th, 2003 · Windows · read review

Game industry News (GiN) ( )

Still, with these shortcomings, Q3A is very enjoyable, and comes pretty close to toppling UT's position at the top of multiplayer FPS. Compared to UT's rating of 5/5 Gems, Q3A gets 4 Gems for its single player mode, and gets a perfect 5 gems for its multiplayer capabilities, for an average of 4.5 Gems. Let the fragging commence!

Dec 15th, 1999 · Windows · read review

GameLand (9 out of 10)

Основные сильные стороны третьего Quake-а те же, что и у всех его предшественников. Q3 силён традицией, отличной, въевшейся в кровь нескольких поколений атмосферой, годами отшлифованным геймплеем. Потенциал третьего Quake-а чрезвычайно высок в силу одного лишь генетического происхождения этой игры! Это действительно очень мощная сила, которую никак не следует недооценивать.

Jan 2000 · Windows · read review

Gamekult (9 out of 10)

Très connu pour son moteur 3D, Quake III Arena a souvent été considéré plus comme un benchmark que comme un véritable jeu. S'il est vrai que le jeu s'est rapidement imposé comme une référence pour les tests de cartes 3D, au même titre que 3D Mark 2000, il ne fait toujours pas l'unanimité en multijoueurs. Rapide et défoulant, un peu bourrin sur les bords, Quake III Arena est malgré tout l'un des meilleurs jeux du genre, même si les joueurs plus subtils et moins regardants sur le moteur graphique peuvent lui préfèrer The Tournament.

Sep 11th, 2000 · Windows · read review

Eurogamer.net (UK) (9 out of 10)

I'd like to try sum up Quake III Arena in the same way, but also take a look at how the game shapes up for those folks, like me, that treat FPS games as a way of life rather than 'just another game'. Traditionally I kick off reviews with a bit of background, but I'm sure that everyone is familiar with id's past legendary works, so far so I'll cut to the chase - Quake III Arena is a strange hybrid of supremely polished first-person shooter evolution and a burning desire to have it appeal to the broader gamer. It's a bit odd, but I mean that in a good way...

Dec 16th, 1999 · Windows · read review

WomenGamers.com (9 out of 10)

Quake 3 Arena is the third installment of the Quake series of shooter games. While it's somewhat different than its predecessors, there are plenty of similarities. Of course being the next in the Quake bloodline, gives it a tremendous basis for being a great game, but to really become a hit it must still prove itself on its own merits.

Dec 20th, 1999 · Windows · read review

PC Zone (1993-2010) (89 out of 100)

A vital purchase and the fastest game money can buy.

Feb 2000 · Windows · read review

Gameplay (Benelux) (86 out of 100)

Ik ben er wel zeker van dat we nog lang zullen genieten van de Quake Arena engine wanneer er andere ontwikkelaars games gaan maken gebaseerd hierop. Half-Life 2, gebaseerd op de Quake Arena engine kan er wat mij betreft niet snel genoeg komen! Pas dan zullen er echt brokken gemaakt worden. Voor nu hou ik me bij Half-Life en Opposing Force voor het online spelen, wat niet wil zeggen dat ik tussendoor niet snel eens een one-on-one in Qukae Arena zal spelen, gewoon maar om te genieten van de prachtige graphics.

Dec 29th, 1999 · Windows

Gamer's Pulse (86 out of 100)

What Quake III Arena boils down to is the beautiful shell of a game, waiting for a suitable host to bring it to life. This is inevitable as we can almost bet on Q3A ports of Team Fortress and Action Quake to save the day. Despite its current lack of a steady pulse, Quake 3 is still a good game. It features the best graphics out there, on top of a rock solid code, with good sound, and typical Quake weapons and levels. One must also acknowledge the fact that there are now a few other big fish out there that can currently provide more fun. As far as gameplay goes I had more fun playing Unreal Tournament, but it can't match up to the beauty of Q3A, and will soon have a hard time matching the quality of gaming once we see those fresh new levels and mods in the baker’s window.

1999 · Windows · read review

JeuxVideoPC.com (17 out of 20)

Un peu partout, on voit émerger ces boutiques étranges que sont les salles réseau, phénomène encore assez marginal qui restait l’apanage de joueurs de RTS. Mais le temps est au changement, et en début d’année le mouvement explose. Déjà un nom traîne sur toutes les lèvres : Counter-Strike, le FPS multijoueur du moment qui a reclassé Quake 2 (l’ancien tenant du titre) au rang de pièce de musée au gameplay fatigué. C’est dans ce contexte qu’Id Software revient avec Quake 3 dernier opus de sa série à succès avec ni plus ni moins que l’intention de donner une nouvelle impulsion au genre…

Jun 19th, 2005 · Windows · read review

Oldies Rising (17 out of 20)

Quake III est surtout destiné aux aficionados du jeu sur Internet. Un domaine où le titre d'id excelle, à condition que le joueur y excelle aussi... Dommage que la partie solo ne soit pas plus poussée, car le gameplay est vraiment d'une rare efficacité et la réalisation est bien plus que splendide. Un jeu qui reste vraiment à essayer, tant par son gameplay renversant que par son ambiance jouissive.

Apr 9th, 2009 · Windows · read review

Game Critics (8.5 out of 10)

Videogames have also been considered another plain old recreational activity, but with the release of the much anticipated online multiplayer first-person shooter (FPS), Quake III: Arena (Q3A), that perception may finally change. The activity of Deathmatching (dueling to the death in cyberspace), which was popularized by FPS games like Q3A, may finally be considered a legitimate sport; digital or otherwise.

Jan 26th, 2000 · Windows · read review

GameSpot (Belgium/Netherlands) (83 out of 100)

We hadden de demo al even in ons bezit en de onderlinge competitiegeest hier op de redactie laaide dan ook weer tot ongekende hoogten op. Eindelijk arriveerde de volledige versie van wat ondertussen de Unreal Tournament-killer werd genoemd.

Dec 24th, 1999 · Windows · read review

Absolute Games (AG.ru) (80 out of 100)

То ли в id слишком спешили, испугавшись конкуренции с UT, то ли просто обленились вконец, но по-моему сейчас уже должно быть стыдно выпускать Quake1, пусть даже более красивый и с кривыми поверхностями, будь они неладны. Я не хочу сказать, что первый Quake — плохая игра, для своего времени он был очень даже ничего. Я хочу сказать, что не стоило выпускать его второй раз... В общем, как ни крути, и ежу ясно, что чемпионатное будущее, как это ни печально — именно за Quake3 Arena.

Dec 10th, 1999 · Windows · read review

All Game Guide ( )

So with that in mind, it's easy to look over Quake III Arena's faults. Though the single-player game is far from substantial with some poorly designed maps, a lack of gameplay options and originality, average weapons and inadequate netcode, the good things will come to those who can wait. With a few modifications and patches, this will have a very long hard-drive life...that is until the next big thing comes along.

1999 · Windows · read review

GamesFirst! ( )

Here’s the bottom line on Quake III: Arena. If you’ve got a hankering for pure deathmatch online and have a fast computer and internet connection, you’ll love it. If you’re looking for a scintillating single player experience, or for something different, look somewhere else. Might I suggest Unreal Tournament?

Dec 21st, 1999 · Windows · read review

Edge (8 out of 10)

That aside, Arena remains as impressively fast, smooth, and enjoyable as anything from id. As a straight deathmatch it is unsurpassed and will doubtless still be played in three years’ time, thanks to its easy-to-modify codebase. But as an enjoyable singleplayer experience it pales in comparison to Half-Life. The future of gaming or a slight hiccup in id’s otherwise exemplary CV? Time will surely tell.

Jan 26th, 2000 · Windows · read review

Just Games Retro ( )

Obviously, single-player aficionados need not apply. Bot matches just feel like something to tide you over while your Internet is down, and online was where the game lived. In that regard, Quake III is everything it needed to be – fast, balanced, and flashy enough. Unfortunately, it feels like it was just refining the multiplayer component of the games that came before, while Unreal Tournament was doing that and innovating at the same time. Everybody had to pick their favorite flavor in 1999, and this one wasn’t mine.

Jul 21st, 2014 · Windows · read review

incite PC Gaming ( )

Great looking and playing frag-fest, but not original enough to hold your interest for an extended period.

Mar 2000 · Windows

Computer Gaming World (CGW) ( )

It's extremely difficult to slap a rating on Q3A, especially in light of UNREAL TOURNAMENT, On one hand, id ended up with what it set out to make: a solid, pure deathmatch game. But in light of UT, that doesn’t seem to be enough; I just want more. I know that deathmatch purists are already eating this game up, and if you crave incredibly last deathmatch in the realm of DOOM or QUAKE, then Q3A is your game. Those of you who want a bit more depth — and a decent single-player mode — should either pass, or buy this title and wait for the online community to make mods for you.

Mar 2000 · Windows

Adrenaline Vault, The (AVault) ( )

Deathmatch fans are going to love Quake III Arena for what it offers, and truth be told, the online deathmatch is fun, if wholly unoriginal. Capture the Flag is also engaging, but there needed to be more unique styles of competition and a stronger Arena Eternal to flesh out the gameplay. While the graphics and animation are outstanding and set a new standard, the title comes up short, especially with the amazingly brief single-player ladder. There is a lot here for fans to build on, but out of the box, Q3A does not offer the ultimate online experience nor come out on top with its single-player deathmatch.

Dec 22nd, 1999 · Windows · read review

Computer Games Magazine ( )

It will be interesting to see what kinds of mods the player community will create for this title (and create they will—several mods have already been announced as of the time of this writing). Even if deathmatch isn't your cup of tea, the game is almost worth picking up for that reason alone. If you are a deathmatch fan then you will find a fun game that is well worth playing—it may not be an instant classic, but in the typical id style, it is polished and fun.

Dec 20th, 1999 · Windows

Gry OnLine (7 out of 10)

Obecnie Quake III już się trochę postarzał, jednak na samym jego enginie wyszło mnóstwo gier, a niektóre są jeszcze w produkcji. Grafika nadal świetnie się prezentuje, a zabawa dalej może być świetna. Jeżeli jeszcze nie miałeś okazji spróbować tej produkcji, to biegnij szybko do najbliższego sklepu. A jeśli jesteś fanem konkurencyjnych produktów, to zmień jak najszybciej banderę i przejdź na naszą stronę :-)

May 28th, 2001 · Windows · read review

Génération 4 (4 out of 6)

Un troisième volet encore plus riche en adrénaline que ce que nous connaissons déjà. En cela, il s'adresse uniquement aux enragés du frag. Les autres se tourneront vers Tournament.

Feb 2000 · Windows · read review

Nerikes Allehanda ( )

Quake 3 måste vara ett av de mest efterlängtade spelen i historien. Då är det ju inte utan att man får höga förväntningar, speciellt efter att ha spelat Unreal tournament. Med facit i hand får man väl säga att John Carmack & co inte riktigt nått ända fram. Visst är Q3 actionfyllt och snabbt, extremt snabbt, men det känns efter ett tag som om man bara springer omkring och skjuter utan någon som helst strategi. Man har helt enkelt inte tid. Som jämförelse får väl sägas att vill man ha ultrasnabb action så satsar man på Q3, men vill man ha lite mer kontroll och chans att utveckla strategi så är Unreal ett bättre val.

Mar 10th, 2000 · Windows

Game Revolution (C+)

Quake 3 is a great way to demo your new, ultra-powered gaming rig, and a decent diversion if taken in small doses. However, overall it fails to impress, invigorate, or even entertain. It does what it sets out to do extremely well, creating a beautiful, high intensity deathmatch game, but it never tries to do very much. Quake 3, for all the praise being lauded on it by the sellouts in the gaming media, is a lightweight contender.

Dec 29th, 1999 · Windows · read review

Player Reviews

Fried blood
by Ashley Pomeroy (232)

The Good
The concept was clever. I admired Id's boldness in making a multiplayer-only game. Previous games in the Quake series had been criticised for their bland single-player experience, and it was brave of Id to damn the torpedoes and put their sterling silver in one basket. Especially here in the UK, where we lagged behind the Americans by a couple of years; broadband has only recently become the mainstream.

It was doubly bold of Id to ignore the obvious gap in the market for a single-player Quake III, given that Quake II had sold well and that the obvious competition - Unreal - was also going the multiplayer-only route. So, three cheers to Id for being bold. It worked, too. Quake III was a substantial hit that spawned a little galaxy of spin-offs. It appealed to me as much as black pudding, but I admired it nonetheless.

But what about the game itself? Quake III is very attractive. It follows the same visual path as Quake II, in that it is colourful and cartoonish. There was a lot of hype at the time about curved arches and glowing lights etc, and although it is not the technical breakthrough of its predecessors, the visual style hasn't really dated today.

The intro movie was short but fantastic. If only the Doom film had been done in the same style.

The Bad
I can think of few more unpleasant things than teenagers. I certainly don't want to spend time playing computer games with them. With this in mind I am uninterested in Quake III's multiplayer game. I was similarly uninterested in Unreal: Tournament as a multiplayer title, but I enjoyed it immensely because it looked fantastic and the computer opponents were enjoyable. They ranged from stupid cannon fodder to absolute fiends, but they seemed alive. Sometimes I felt that I could even put down my weapon and negotiate with them. The sniper rifle was wonderful. I loved to shoot off their heads.

Quake III reminded me of another multiplayer-only title, X-Wing Vs TIE Fighter. In the latter game the AI was duff, in that it was entirely robotic. The enemy spacecraft were uniformly perfect shots and were only there to fill out the numbers. They did not miss. They could, superhumanly, tell where you were pointing your crosshairs and where you were going. They could track you and lead and nail you like the fire control software in an F-14 jet fighter. Six targets at once, from a range of two hundred miles. I felt as if I was the navigator of a Russian bomber, contemplating the incoming missiles, unable to dodge or bail out. It was not pleasant.

Quake III is not nearly as bad as all that, but the AI is nonetheless too obviously computerised, in the sense that it is a perfect shot that has been degraded with some clever code. It quickly becomes impossible to suspend disbelief and imagine that you are playing against another person. This can be alleviated by lowering the difficulty level, but that smacks of failure.

Some people will argue that I am simply a very poor gamesplayer, and that I am old and have lost my touch. This is the kind of argument a teenager might use, and it is one of the reasons why I have come to detest teenagers. It is a conservative argument. An argument that stems from a desire not to lose face in front of one's peers by admitting weakness. It is the kind of argument that ends up with a drunken child trying to walk along a wall, and falling off and breaking his neck.

Unreal: Tournament is the more complex game; there are far more modes of play and you can customise the environment and the effects that weapons have upon it. I assume that there are mods and patches to allow this in Quake III as well, but by 1999 I had begun to grow past the age of caring and I care less in 2006.

The Bottom Line
Most reviews compared Quake III with Unreal: Tournament, and so did mine. There were partisans on both sides, all of seven years ago. The general consensus amongst teenage gamesplayers who I detest was that Quake III was a manly game for manly men, whereas Unreal: Tournament was a limp-wristed game for men who were not manly.

Nonetheless I prefer the latter game. Quake III is more obviously a multi-player engine with bare support for single-play, whereas Unreal: Tournament had more thought put into the single-player experience. Quake III might well be the bee's knees as a multiplayer game. As a single-player game I quickly became bored with it.

May 8th, 2006 · Windows

Awesome deathmatch redeems this meatless meal
by Maw (881)

The Good
In 1999, id Software did something that, depending on who you ask, was genius or stupidity: release an FPS game that almost completely eschewed single player gameplay and focused on multiplayer. Released side-by-side with Epic's Unreal Tournament, it became a cult FPS and is regarded by many as id's magnum opus. Which is surprising when you consider that Quake 3 is less of a game than any of its predecessors.

Quake 3 condenses the FPS genre into the simplest form possible. Realism, story, and design have all been given the shaft and what is left is nothing more than the raw basics of the genre. You pick up weapons, pick up ammo, and try to kill your enemies more times than they kill you. Doom is rocket science next to this. Predictably the game was the subject of a lot of backbiting and criticism, and many claimed it typified the style over substance trend gaming had gotten into. But I'm willing to forgive Quake 3 simply because it was the most fun deathmatch game of its time when released, and even today more than holds its own.

The core of the game, deathmatch mode, is a blast. The transparent pick-up-and-play design to it that makes it very easy to get into, and whether you're a novice or a pro there's something for everyone. Everything in the game is just right. Your characters move at just the right speed, the weapons are all perfectly balanced (for the first time in history, we get a default weapon that is not a total piece of crap), the powerups complement the gameplay perfectly, and in another first for id Software the maps that come with the game actually do not suck. I'm sure all veteran deathmatchers have horror stories about the terrible Quake maps, but Q3A's maps are almost flawless, speaking of endless playtesting and tweaking on the parts of the level designers. No longer does the first person to find the rocket launcher win, and no longer can you rack +20 frags by camping. "The Longest Yard" in particular must be one of the most fun and well-rounded FPS deathmatch maps ever.

The game becomes drastically different depending on how many players there are. If it's just you and a friend the game is a tense affair filled with stalking and stealth. If you've got sixteen players the game becomes a crazy mosh pit where you're frantically shooting non-stop at everything. Just about everything is user-configurable allowing for weird situations where every bullet kills or where players can only move at a snail's pace.

While Quake III Arena's focus may be its multiplayer deathmatch component, it does have a single-player mode. When playing alone, you can go up against artificial intelligence-controlled bots. The bots do their best to act like human players, and while I won't say they have the greatest AI ever they still put up a good fight. Each bot has different characteristics that govern the way it fights. The portly biker chick Lucy tends to duck a lot. Xaero, a Zen master and the final boss of the single-player mode, is also master of the railgun. There's also a tournament mode where you duel with increasingly tougher bots.

id Software's calling card has always been their boundary-pushing graphical engines, from the EGA graphics on Commander Keen to the realistic 3D environments of Quake I and II. With Quake III Arena they upped the ante yet again, delivering every cutting-edge effect in the book from volumetric lighting to curved surfaces, allowing the map designers freedom to create environments that go from hard edged industrial to squishy organic, all with geometric detail that is impressive even by today's standards.

And like all of the Quake games, it was built from the ground up to be user-modifiable. This spawned a lively modding scene that remains active to this day, tweaking the game's extremely flexible engine to produce everything from unofficial patches to completely new games. id Software actively supported this by releasing the source code and all their early design docs. That's one thing you can say about them, you never feel like a criminal when you're messing around with their games.

And I love the industrial metal soundtrack Sonic Mayhem did for the game. Seriously, I've got it on CD.

The Bad
Quake 3 is unapologetically a one-trick pony. It's about deathmatch, deathmatch, and deathmatch. Outstanding deathmatch perhaps, but once you're sick of deathmatch there's nothing else here.

This is not a criticism that can be applied universally across the genre. Unreal Tournament had a wide variety of multiplayer modes, including capture the flag, domination, and many others. There are people who spend as long learning to play Counter Strike as a grandmaster does learning chess. Even games like Duke Nukem 3D and Blood have combined great multiplayer modes with compelling single-player components.

Or look at it this way. Relatively few people play vanilla Quake 3 any more. It's all about mods like Rocket Arena and Urban Terror. In terms of replay value Quake 3 doesn't go the distance.

And on a less significant note Quake 3's in-built game browser doesn't really work properly and often will refuse connections. GameSpy Arcade is your best bet when looking for games on the internet. It's sad when GameSpy is the lesser of two evils.

The Bottom Line
I could roast Quake 3 all day long for being unoriginal, derivative, etc and to be honest there's fairness in those criticisms. But in the end, you've got to review the game on its own terms. Quake 3 was made so new players could jump right in. It was made so long-time Quake fans wouldn't be too unfamiliar. It was made for people with short attention spans. Maybe it's a repugnant design philosophy but complaining about Quake 3 because it's retarded is like complaining about ice cream because it melts. With Quake 3 you've got an arcade game in a 3D-accelerated engine, and we've all got to accept that and move on.

For what it's worth, you'll have trouble finding a higher-quality multiplayer FPS anywhere. In movie jargon, Quake 3 "works".

Jul 25th, 2007 · Windows

The most balanced online FPS game to date.
by Medicine Man (361)

The Good
Back in the day, people loved Quake and Quake 2 for their beautiful graphics, awesome gameplay, but mostly, for their multiplayer. Then, in 1999, id Software released Quake 3, which was a combination of all good stuff from Quake 1 and 2's multiplayer.

As always, in the tradition of Quake games (and any other games developed by id Software), Quake 3, as a new game, introduced a new revolutionary engine, which was more beautiful, more realistic than the previous engine and was later used in newer games, many of which later became a legend, such as Medal of Honor: Allied Assault, Call of Duty, Return to Castle Wolfenstein and others. The textures and physics really were impressive back in the day. If some people think that Quake 3 wasn't as good as Counter Strike or Unreal Tournament, will, they may even be right at some point, but one thing is for sure - they can never tell us that it didn't have better graphics than those games.

Decent audio effects and soundtracks were also present. The last ones, being written by Sonic Mayhem and Front Line Assembly, were maybe not as good as those from Quake 2, but were still enjoyable to hear in the background while you were fragging like a machine.

Quake 3 had a good variety of powerups - the good old Quad Damage, which never lets down (though now being only triple damage in reality), the Radiation suit similar to the ones from previous games, the invisibility, which resembles the Partial Invisibility from Doom, and some good new entrances, like the Regeneration, Flight and Haste. All being fun to use, they really add it to the gameplay. The weapons arsenal is like a mix of Doom and previous Quake games. Besides weak starting weapons like the Machinegun and the Gauntlet we got the good old shotty, the rocket launcher, which still allows us to perform a rocket jump, the grenade launcher, the favourite of the snipers, the railgun, the all-mighty lighting gun from Quake 1, the new BFG10K and a plasma gun very similar to the one from Doom. A little added thing to the railgun is that you can now choose the colour of the railguns fire effect. Not much of a new addition, but still gives a variety to the game. Q3 has a big variety of maps, which range from old castle like architectures from Quake 1 to some bouncy space themed maps like in Quake 2. There is an endless roster of playable characters, some of which are heroes of previous id games, like the Doomguy, the Q1 Marine, Q2 Marine, and female counterparts of some of them, as well as some new skins based on those guys.

Quake 3 also introduced some new stuff to the multiplayer world of FPS games. It's good to know that your a decent player, but it's even cooler if you get some rewards/bonuses for some awesome tricks you did. For example, you kill 2 enemies in less than 2 seconds, and for that you get an Excellent reward above your head, to let the other players know about that, and the announcer also comments "Excellent!" to you. There are many rewards like these in the game. Things like these were later used in other online FPS games, or in multiplayer of FPS games, like Halo, for example.

The Bad
There are more than single things to not like about this game, however. At first, its very strange that you can't play TDM on every DM map, which is very disappointing, cause i'd love to play a Team Game on a cool map like The Longest Yard, for example. This however, was fixed in some modded servers, so it's not such a big problem.

My second complaint about this game is, that it's not such a long-living game like UT and CS. You get tired of this game faster than of those games, and it is less popular, judging by the number of servers and players. There is just something which doesn't make this game as good as it is supposed to be. Throughout the history of Quake, the games in the series always welcomed a good multiplayer mode, but since Quake 3, other companies started to develop better online games, which are a much more beast than Quake 3. And, when Quake 4 came out, will, it was more than just a disappointment, it was an embarrassment, when compared to other games of that day.

Also, another small complaint from me - the sound of the weapons. Just horrible, so weak, and the way they fire is even worse. The weapons from previous Quake games were a lot more powerful than those in Q3.

The Bottom Line
Despite all of its flaws, Quake 3 is still a legendary game, which is still sometimes fun to play next to some of the best online games of the present day. There is just one thing which completely differs it from all other games - the way its balanced in its gameplay and how friendly it is to all those who play it.

Jun 22nd, 2009 · Windows

A worthy successor to the original Quake fragfest
by Silverblade (1479)

The Good
While it features virtually no story, however the main focus of the game was to make up for Quake 2's slow multiplayer which alienated most Quake players. This is not to say bots in single-player are not challenging... just that this game really shines in online or LAN multiplayer. Its deathmatch experience is the next best thing since Doom and Quake. Extremely fast gameplay, intense action, balanced weapons. expert level design, beautiful models and Carmack's once again unbelievably good graphics engine were the hallmarks of its resounding success. The only game that could slow the Quake frenzy was Counter-Strike.

The Bad
The single player part was probably its weakest part, however I found the bots to be quite entertaining on their own. A worthy substitute when fragging offline. Some opponents in certain stages were probably more lethal than their skill level should allow.

The Bottom Line
Speed, Power and Adrenaline. One of the best multiplayer experiences ever. An incredibly powerful and modable graphics engine that stood the test of time and was used even as recently as 2003.

Dec 9th, 2004 · Windows

A great multiplayer game, but if you're not a multiplayer fan stay away.
by Tomer Gabel (4631)

The Good
This game has one of the best 3D engines to date. I disagree with people saying that it's the best as I find Unreal more appealing (haven't played Tournament yet), but the eye-candy is definitely amazing. The 3D engine is great in complexity and generally beautiful. The AI is one of the best I've encountered yet, unlike the veritable stupidity of the bots in Unreal. The bots in Quake III behave reasonably well and human-like (although are simply too difficult in high levels) and the only single player experience available in this game is quite satisfying. The level design is amazing, my personal favorite being The Longest Yard, and the levels are fairly large and allow a great deal of gameplay. The sound effects are excellent (the music isn't all that good though) and the A3D implementation is awesome.

Also noteworthy are the support for hardware transform and lighting (a la GeForce 256) and support for Symetrical Multiprocessing (SMP), which gives an incredible speed bost on dual-processor sysmtems.

The Bad
AI is way too difficult in the higher levels (read: hardcore, or even worse, nightmare) and simply does not miss with the railgun, which is rather annoying. The 3D engine is very slow on relatively modest hardware: last year's near-best computer (my P2-350 with Riva TNT and 128mb memory) is this year's sludge, and I can get more than 30 frames per second in 640x480, 32 bit colour (23ish if I turn A3D on). The music simply sucks (too heavy on the bass and too lenient on the quality).

I'm also personally against the concept of a multiplayer oriented game (including Unreal Tournament), especially because although working on the fastest reasonably acheivable internet connection in Israel (single-channel ISDN), I still get a 450-500ms ping rate, which makes gaming practically impossible, and I don't have LAN-parties on a regular basis.

The Bottom Line
A great game which emphasizes multiplayer gaming. If you're a single-player fan like me, stay away from it.

Jan 10th, 2000 · Windows

Excellent game!
by Pavel Yeloyev (5)

The Good
The game is simply great! It contains lots of MODs, weapons, and websites to go to. There are hundreds of programs and servers which support it. The game has a HUGE amount of customizable options and a highly interactive built-on console. You can also create your own maps, skins, models, and MODs due to the highly customizable files.

The Bad
There are really no flaws with this game other than some minor glitches, which were probably fixed in the later versions of the game.

The Bottom Line
This game should be interesting to all types of players because of the huge variety of MODs.

Jan 28th, 2002 · Windows

One more praise of greatest game ever
by ThE oNe (183)

The Good
Graphics: The stages were colorful and depthful, and were each created with special care. Some areas have tons of powerups but are not safe, while others are sneaky and hidden but will get you wastin ammo like crazy.

Sound: Sound is great, sound fx are great, did I mention sound is great?

Models: Each model is good and bad. Some are fast but aren't very good at heavy weaponry, while other are slow but built strong.

The Bad

The Bottom Line
One small step for man. One small leap for mankind. 5 out of 5

Oct 17th, 2002 · Windows

Plus 158 player ratings without reviews

Contributors to this Entry

Critic reviews added by lights out party, Jeanne, Kerrazzy, Virgil, Plok, Tomas Pettersson, Patrick Bregger, Scaryfun, ryanbus84, Alsy, vedder, Wizo, Emmanuel de Chezelles, Cantillon, Klaster_1, Big John WV, yenruoj_tsegnol_eht (!!ihsoy), Foxhack, Cavalary, ti00rki, Thomas Helsing.