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    PQ | Features | Mailbag | December 19, 1998
   

The big news this week was Bill Clinton's launching of air strikes against Iraq in a (probably futile) attempt to hold up impeachment proceedings against him.

However, this time Saddam unleashed his secret weapon... After secret negotiations with the Makron, Saddam Hussein has come into possession of some war surplus left over from the Strogg war.

Don't believe me? Check this shot taken from CNN (courtesy of Chris Hargrove's .plan)

One American pilot returning from a sortie over Baghdad was heard to say "F*cking BFG lamer" before storming back to his quarters on the USS Eisenhower in a huff...


Choose Quake Arena

"Choose Quake Arena. Choose air acceleration, choose zero knockback, choose low gravity and fast rockets, choose running around faster than a Doom marine on speed..."

With a recent IRC chat with Brian Hook, Disruptor and Zoid making Quake Arena sound like Lithium on .. um .. lithium when it comes to server customisation, this week's editorial "Choose Your Own Adventure" asked if this was taking things too far.

Unsurprisingly we've been flooded with mail on the subject.


From : Mr Shambler
Subject : Fooz's editorial.

I agree entirely with the Fooz - after reading the IRC log, I had exactly the same worry. This is going to make Q3A even less of a "game" and more of an engine, divide the Quake scene even further (when Q3A should be bringing it together), reduce motivation and purpose to mod makers, as well as cause the innummerate logistical problems Fooz mentioned.

A grave mistake on Id's behalf when it turns out that the ultimate deathmatch game is not even going to be a single game at all....


From : Gryphin
Subject : Q3A customizablity

Man, if they are going to let the server-ops set up Q3 anyway they like, it's gonna be total chaos. just think of it as playing a game of Doom, then jumping into Q1, then back to Doom, then jump into a game of Q2 post-.15, then play a game of Q2 pre-.15.

it's gonna be like trying to learn a new game everytime you jump on a server. i mean, customization is great (i.e. Lithium2 Mod, excellent cusomtization without ruining the overall game) but from what i see, Q3A is going to go overboard. I mean, you can't go changing around basics like running speed, gravity, etc.

Take all the pissed off people that happened when they were toying with air-physics in the 3.15 era, and multiply by every player of Quake. I don't mind resetting my learning curve on a new game, but don't make me relearn everything for every time i play, it's gonna kill the game.


From : Big Me
Subject : Choose Your Own Adventure - Comments

I think Dan Miller was hitting the Paranoid Pills™ a little too hard when he wrote this editorial. I think that this much control will be a boon for players. It wouldnt be that hard to come up with a "Clan Standard" configuration. The only problem would be all the other 2,000 servers.

I think it would be a good idea for the guys at Gamespy to turn the server info you get into easy to understand phrases like "fast" or "swag". so then when you are wondering what the air acceleration is on a certain server, you just fire up gamespy, highlight a server and a box will open up saying if the air acceleration is more jiggy than swaggy, so we can all understand.

A lot of people will die in the process, but im sure net profit will rise by at least 5%.


From : James Rex
Subject : Recent Article about Q3A...

*SNIP*

Dan mentioned about how clans will argue about how to play. I doubt this will be a problem either. In the chat log, they said there were going to be several predetermined settings, like setting it to play like Quake 2, Doom, or any other id game (from what I can tell.) Clans will probably divide themselves up among the defaults set by the game. PGL will probably, too.

[ I think that was the problem Dan was talking about - if the clans split themselves up between four different settings and the PGL has to run four Q3A tournaments it's going to dilute the community. ]

I bet Quake 3 probably as the next generation of multiplayer internet gaming simply because of the variety... and not to mention giving Gestalt more ammo for PQ articles.

Actually StarSiege Tribes is the "next generation" multiplayer game I'm looking forward to most. And best of all it should be on shelves by the New Year, leaving behind Unreal Tournament and Quake III Arena in a cloud of dust...


From : Ethan Hartman
Subject : Q3 Customisability

Mr. "Foozmelon" Miller certainly made some interesting points in his editorial. While it is true it might be a chore to learn different kinds of servers, I think that most agree that it will add a new level of richness to the experience of Quake. And after all, many of us don't play only vanilla DM.

The truth is, even before Quake II came out, these types of debates were growing in the Quake community. Last week, there was a dialogue on player speed in Doom, Quake, and Quake II on firingsquad.com, which is just an expression of a long-standing debate (No, man, I like Quake 1 better!)

Just the other day, I argued with a friend who runs a Lithium II server about nonstandard weapons settings (or, more specifically, why he had the railgun set to do 175 damage and enabled strength rune, while he could shrug off rockets as if they were paper airplanes.)

It seems to me that if we are to simulate a world, we should be able to make a lot of decisions about it, and not simply accept decisions made by even the wisest game designers. Mr. Carmack and the other members of Id's design team understand that Quake is the most libertarian of worlds, and they simply want to make it even easier for the players of their game to make the decisions which affect them.

I think it is clear that Quake is and will continue to be a non-standardized game; and it is equally clear that this is one of the most important reasons why Quake is and will be so exciting.

Choice is a great thing, if you can trust the people to choose wisely. Democracy seems like a great idea as well, until you end up with a decade under a Margaret Thatcher or a Ronald Reagan... Um .. let me rephrase that.

As your example of the Lithium II server shows, even server ops can be idiots. And given that Q3A will have four "standard" settings, it means even before you start tinkering with options that the Quake community is at risk of being split in four.


And finally...


From : Stupid Newbie
[ No, I'm not being rude - that's his nickname. ]
Subject : Quake III..or is it Quake 1.5?

After reading an IRC log of some of the Quake III designers, I'm wondering if they should rename it to Quake 1.5?

They are bringing back all of the lame shit that turned me off to Classic Quake. The Lightning gun, the generic weapons, the chunky system requirements. Well, at least id has admitted that they couldn't think up a good story unless one crawled up Paul Steed's ass and started playing hackeysack with his spleen. [ An image I could well have lived without... ]

All theyre doing is releasing the source code, a sort of Team-Fortress, RA, Mortal Kombat hybrid modification and some maps. Sorta like when the First Quake came out and the single player maps were just a technology demo of the Quake technology.

And they got Thresh playtesting the thing. I mean, come-on, Thresh is the lamest sack of turd I have ever had the misfortune of laying my eyes on. Anyone remember when he did editorials for PC GAMER? That lasted..what? 4 or 5 months? And he calls himself a professional gamer...WTF is that? He isn't even that good, just because he won John Romero's ferrari he becomes some kinda fucking superhero. The man gets PAID to play games..damn I think I need a smoke...ahh nothin beats cigars. [ A slight case of jealousy? Having seen Thresh in action I can confirm the guy is nothing short of amazing - probably not the best player in the world, but certainly one of the best. ]

Anyway, I think id should join up with Ritual. id just codes the engine, and Ritual makes the game because, well, Levelord kicks ass.

Let's hear it for his Lordness! Bah. Now there's a definite case of hype exceeding performance...


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