Quake 2

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Updated: 11 Nov 2017 06:28

Quake II

Quake II is my all time favorite first person shooter and if you still play this game, then you might be considered a retro gamer. Quake II is special for two reasons.

1) It changed the way people played multi-player games. Prior to Q2, most shooters required careful organization of all players intending to shoot it out. This was because back then, you couldn't start a game that was already in session. The way this was commonly handled was to approach friends at school or work during the day, decide who would act as the server, and then pick a time. Then at the designated time, all participants would literally call the host over a phone line using their computer. When everyone was connected, the host would then start the game and if you were late, too bad for you. But when Q2 came around it didn't require a phone call, it just required access to the internet and you could then join any game that was already underway. Today we take this for granted, but back then, this was revolutionary and sites like The Zone were hot spots for trash talking aggressive Q2 players. In fact, Q2 was such a magnet for salty Q2 players that Microsoft, owners of The Zone, put up warnings for new players that were browsing through the rooms, and most of the moderators avoided the Q2 rooms like the plague.

Part of what made Q2 so great, was an incredibly cool single player story mode.

2) After Q2, many game developers leaned hard on the PvP experience that made games like Q2 so popular. But in many cases after Q2, the focus on PvP by developers was so extreme, that newer games lacked a single player experience. For example, Q3 was an arena game with no single player story line. Quake Live released back in 2010 was also strictly a PvP game and the latest installment; Quake Champions is also an arena game, many games today are strictly PvP. But part of what made Q2 so great, was an incredibly cool single player story mode. In fact, if you've never played Q2, then I highly recommend it just for the single player experience alone, and the end has quite an amazing Easter egg but don't ruin it by looking it up on youtube, experience it.

quake-2-outer-base.jpg

Quake II: Map 1 (Outer Base) 32 bit version. A popular spot for camping reachable via rocket jump.

I've played a lot of shooters, but Q2 is still my all time favorite and over the years I've probably clocked more hours into this shooter than any other. Though MOHAA might be a close second. What is interesting to note is that there are still a fair number of Q2 servers available and you can even buy Q2 on sites like Steam and Gog. While the graghic design looks a bit dated, the graphics still look decent for this old classic.

To this day, Q2 still has a dedicated fan base, as well as a cult following. I can't recommend Quake II enough, and for the price it's well worth it. If you do buy it then do yourself a favor and finish the single player arc before going multiplayer. And find all of the secret locations because that will help you out a lot when competing against others. If you're short on spending money then join my mailing list because I give out free Steam keys once a month and from time to time I have copies of Q2 to give away. Or just skip a meal and buy it, it's super cheap these days.