Ultimate Quad Capture
Remember Nerf Arena Blast? It was an attempt using Unreal's technology to make a "family friendly" FPS where you ran around shooting relatively non-threatening characters with virtual sponge ammo. For all I know it tanked, but CocoT was so impressed by one play mode that he had to port it to Quake, along with extra play modes and the almighty Frikbot.
Since there are special impulses bound to particular keys, CocoT has included his config.cfg file. Unfortunately he didn't strip off all the video mode tweakage, so before playing slice off everything after the key definitions, just to be safe.
Basic Play Mode Capture quads to win
The basic play mode is fairly simple. Scattered around the map are eight quad-flag pairs, along with a red ring called "the arch". You pick up these colourful quads and "capture" them by running through the arch. The first clown to capture all eight different quads causes a ninth white one to spawn: capturing this winds up the game.
The flags actually give indications as to the quad's status. X means "available", D is for "dropped", and a number means you should find the player with a matching digit, blow his freakin' head off and take the quad from his cold, dead fingers.
Map support is currently hardwired into the QuakeC code; also, no maps are provided in the zip, you have to get them separately. I actually approve, since this means you can still play those maps as straight DM without funny messages.
DOSQuake users are out of luck here: Some of the models use long filenames, and thus UQC will not run under DOS. You'll need WinQuake at the very least.
On a hardcoded map the Frikbots do very well and play very cruelly. Then again, I do suck.
Extra game modes A mixed bag
There are eight different versions of the game, in addition to options to adjust how many quads a player can carry, what speed rockets fly at, etc. The basic game mode has been discussed already.
When using the menu system to change the game, return to the main menu before exiting. Otherwise, when you go to change weapons you'll get the gameplay changing instead.
Two of these modes are versions of Holy Wars: In the straight HW mode, you want to be the Saint and collect all eight quads while everyone else tries to kill you. There's also Quad Asshole, where one guy has to kill someone else in order to make them the Asshole, who is unable to collect anything. Frankly I found this "inverse Holy Wars" mode extremely frustrating.
There's also an extremely enjoyable straight Domination variety where you just "touch" the quads, and with eight of them on a level there's a lot of running around involved. Versions of Quad Hunt, Last Man Standing and an interesting take on Headhunters also exist.
In addition, two modes use the quads as "power-ups"; Runic Wars causes the quads to give the collector special powers, like runes; Weapons & Quads uses them to "upgrade" your weapon, with corresponding penalties (i.e. the more powerful your weapon, the less frags you get per kill.)
There are also five "hidden" modes, which can only be unlocked by performing to a certain level of skill. One of these is a sort of "speedrun" where each quad is guarded by an ogre, and you have to capture them within a time limit (I think.)
Adding spawns Fiddly as
There is a special editing mode where you can place and orient the flags and quads in a map, and have the info saved to a console log. However, it's not that easy to use; for one thing, the sequence of placement is hardwired, so you can't plop the arch down first and work from there. Also, you must view the selected location at least once or no info is reported.
The location data produced is in QuakeC code (intended to be sent to CocoT for inclusion in a later patch release), but the readme file explains what all the entity names are, so you can stick them thangs directly into the map. However you'll have to set temp1 to 1 in order to use such map-coded items.
There is also a "quick-place" mode where you just drop 'em down and get going, which is kinda fun to start off a quick game.
Overall Bring on v1.3
Ultimate Quad Capture is a multiplayer modification of grand scope, with its multitude of game modes and "out of the box" support for over thirty maps. The basic play mode is well developed and most of the alternate modes are nicely designed and sometimes balanced (*cough* Quad Asshole *cough*).
The matter of the menus and the fiddly system for placing UQC items could do with some streamlining; for instance, the use of console variables as an alternate means of mode setting (e.g. temp1)
As a final nitpick, the "E"s that adorn the quads and arch (that's "E" for "Expo") could do with being removed, as they mean nothing to the great unwashed who missed QExpo 2001.
Despite this, UQC is a very good mod that deserves more coverage, more downloads and more playing.