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    PQ | Features | Mailbag | November 21, 1998
   

Our Kingdom Come

This week's editorial, "The Community To Come", unleashed a torrent of (well, three) e-mails...


From : Dan
Subject : Re: The Community To Come > 11/20/98

Reading through the recent PlanetQuake editorial, I found myself agreeing with nearly everything that was said. The Quake community was indeed somewhat divided when Quake II came out, and now these non-Quake games are forming there own little communites which don't amount to a whole heck of a lot, but still steal away Quake enthusiasts.

One point the author made that stuck in my mind was his remark about Quake being the only game of its kind at the time, which is why it was a revolution in itself. This is very true -- Doom was a classic and Duke Nukem was kinda neat, but none of them could compete with Quake's flexibility and online features. Quake was, no doubt, one of a kind back in those days... however, I don't think the Quake community will just shrivel up and die just because Quake has some company now.

Take a look at what's out there -- SiN is fun, but a revolution it's not. Blood II is already catching flak (and I mean a lot of flak) for its less than great demo. Shogo is very interesting and innovative, but again, it just isn't going to conquer the world. The only game that I feel may give Quake a run for its money is Half-Life, but I still wonder about that one... after all, how could a Quake engine game dethrone Quake once and for all? I don't think it can.

In short, while these "new breed" shooters all seem to have their fans, not one of them will knock Quake from the top. And believe me, Quake is sitting quite well on the top, no matter what anyone says. It may not be the only game of its kind anymore, but it's still alive and kicking -- hell, it's alive and dancing on the damn table. Quake III Arena will only propel this further (in terms of an online community).

The Quake Community may lose some of its fans to the other shooters (at least for awhile), but it will never be knocked down.

"I get knocked down, but I get up again, dah de dah, can't remember the next line..."

Um, sorry.


From : John Rector
Subject : Re: The Community to Come

With all due respect, you point out the flaw in your own argument when you state that there was exactly this kind of hand-wringing before about the end of the community with the introduction of Q2 and Unreal.

Even after those shocks, the community still exists for you to worry about it falling apart again. Frankly, have faith my brother - the community will hold together during these troubled times until the prophet John of Carmack brings forth into the world the savior of the community.

It held together last time, so we have every indication it will continue to do so.


From : Dragon
Subject : RE: Community to Come

I disagree with Marc. One thing you'll notice about a lot of the upcoming FPS games is that a lot of them are based off the Quake 2 engine, and a great deal of them share many common features.

Another thing to notice is that all of the FPS websites are linked... PlanetQuake links to PlanetUnreal, which links back to PQ, and Hexenworld, Ritualistic, Hereticii.com, etc, etc... now what this really means is that new players who have enjoyed one game enough to look into it more on the internet will also be introduced to many other impressive games, maybe enough so that they will try them out as well.

In the end, it can only bring more players into the community.

From an editing standpoint, it is also a good thing- Quake 2, Sin, Heretic II... all use the same editors and compilers, so someone skilled with one game can easily edit another.

Basic skill also carry over, even when specific editing techniques do not. I learned level editing on JED for Jedi Knight. It works entirely differently than Qoole, as it's sector based rather than brush based. But after a short adaptation period, I find that I'm just as good, if not better, with Qoole, and, more importantly, all basic level design and item placement techniques carry over, no matter what game you're playing.

With a broader learning base, it becomes easier and easier to work with different games, allowing you to switch between whichever game fits your envisioned results the best; gun levels for Q/Q2, bladestaff levels for Heretic II, CTF levels, Holywars levels, etc, etc.

It also means that mod makers can draw upon a broad variety of skills developed from editing all the different games, which ultimately makes things fresher, and easier.

And finally, for the hard-core gamer, variety is the spice of life. As I said, I started with Jedi Knight, where I learned saber skills and basic gun techniques. Later, I switched over to Q2 for a while, and my gun techniques improved immensely. When I played Jedi Knight again, I was a much more rounded player, able to cope with varied strategies and changing conditions.

Now I'm working with Heretic II, and, fortunately, the light saber skills carry over as well as the gun skills, making me a very capable player in whichever game I want to play at the moment.

So, I feel the large variety of FPS games out there can only help the internet community in general, rather than become its downfall.

And on that (unusually for the Mailbag) positive note...


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