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Quake 4
(hx) 10:51 AM EDT - Oct,28 2005

Quake 4 is a true sequel for Quake II, and you will play as a marine named Matthew Kane, a member of a military unit called the Rhino Squad. You're not a squad commander in Quake 4. You're a guy who is taking orders, not barking orders. This should seem odd for people that played the first three Quake games, because this is the first time that we know the name of the character we are playing. The marines are supposed to be securing and cleaning up the planet Stroggos, which is the home planet of the Strogg aliens.

The game's objectives might not be the most interesting thing in the world, but the game's combat is generally pretty satisfying. While you won't see hundreds of combatants killing each other at once you will get to see some great firefights, tons of explosions and huge weaponry at the same time. Basically, you'll have missions where you may have to escort or protect a VIP, meet up with your squad mates and so on. There're also some vehicle-based missions which are are quite fun. You have a chance to utilize a tank and a two-legged mechanical walker to advance yourself through the Strogg ground defenses.

What about weapons? Don't worry! You've got your useless pistol, the machinegun, a shotgun, the nail gun, hyperblaster, rocket launcher, lightning gun, grenade launcher and the new BFG replacement, the Dark Matter gun. The weapons can be upgraded during the game. Which means even your weaker weapons at the beginning of the game can be used later in the game for more punch. For instance, the rocket launcher will be upgraded to hold three rockets instead of one and the nailgun will gain the ability to lock onto targets. On other side, some weapons seem to be a little lacking in area's - in particular the grenade launcher seems to be almost useless while the Shotgun feel a little unsatisfying - indeed, most of the time you'll just end up sticking to the assault rifle. You can carry as many weapons as you want, so the only tactics you have to worry about are keeping an eye on your ammo and health count and using the appropriate weapons for each enemy.



Quake manages to throw up much more enemies on screen than Doom 3 was able to, though it isn't going to approach Serious Sam numbers at any time. All of the Strogg enemies from Quake II return, including Grunts, Gunners and Berzerkers (who have a nasty new ground attack). Unlike the hellspawn from Doom 3, you won't find them hiding in cupboards waiting to pounce on you just as soon as you pick up that medkit and nor will they spawn directly behind you out of thin air. However, the AI in this game is, to be fair, pretty non-existant. The enemies revert to simply rushing at you. Your team mates are a slightly different cup of tea, they can be trusted to look after themselves reasonably competently, however they display no real signs of team intelligence and tactics, instead they either run to and hold pre-determined cover, or wait for you to take the lead.

Finally, the multiplayer -I've only played a little thus far but I've gathered a good first impression. Unlike the single player experience the multiplayer aspect in more heavily influenced by Q3A. Supporting up to 16 players, the typical multiplayer modes are present: Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, One-on-One, Capture the Flag (CTF) and CTF Arena. There're nine Deathmatch (ten if you include the 1v1 version of one) maps, and five Capture the Flag maps. Players can elect either marine or Strogg models for any mode, and CTF teams are racially divided - marines vs Strogg. The multiplayer is very fast paced, with plenty of jump pads found to make the game even more hectic. It is a prettier version of Q3A, which is quite disappointing given the number of years that have passed since that game launched. Clearly developers have embraced the "if it ain't broke don't fix it" philosophy and that will simultaneously work for and against it.

Quake 4 basically is another first-person shooter where you don't really have to think what to do - just shoot. Don't expect the dark, creepy atmosphere of Doom 3, Quake is more fast paced (but still a bit slower than Unreal games or the original Quake) and in my opinion, looks sharper. The single player campaign is involving and never really gets boring. The few levels using the vehicles do seem a bit out of place in the game but they are few and far between so it is really not a big issue. The campaign features some good old fashioned boss fights worthy of the Quake name. Multiplayer is just Quake 3 which isn't a bad thing. Well, a few more maps would have been nice. But with its mod support Multiplayer will probably only get better so you might just have to wait.

Overall, Quake 4 is a good game but not revolutionary in any way. The gameplay is just fun, and as classified, Highly Addictive. Wait until you can pick it up for $25-$30, and it will be worth it.

related links: homepage, cheats, savegames, Buy Quake 4.

Minimum System Requirements: Pentium 4 2.0 GHz or Athlon XP 2000+ processor, 512MB RAM, 3D hardware Accelerator Card - 100% DirectX 9.0c compatible 64MB*, 100% DirectX 9.0c compatible 16-bit sound card and latest drivers, 4x Speed DVD-ROM drive and latest drivers, 2.8GB of uncompressed free hard disk space (plus 400MB for Windows swap file)
 
* supported cards ATI Radeon 9700/9800/X300/X550/X600/X700/X800/X850 series, Nvidia GeForce 3/Ti series, GeForce 4/Ti series, GeForce FX series, GeForce 6 series, Nvidia GeForce 7 series.

Multiplayer Requirements: Internet (TCP/IP) and LAN (TCP/IP) play supported, Internet play requires broadband connection and latest drivers, LAN play requires network interface card and latest drivers.

Bandwidth: QUAKE 4 Multiplayer is bandwidth intensive. This means that a slower upload speed will be able to support fewer combatants. Recommended maximum players for broadband upload speeds under OPTIMAL conditions are provided below:
128Kbps - 4 players 512Kbps - 10 players
256Kbps - 6 players 768Kbps - 12 players
384Kbps - 10 players LAN - 16 players

* There are two versions of Quake 4 available - the basic version which comes with Quake 4 on CD's only, and the Special DVD Edition, which comes with Quake 4 on a DVD plus a Bonus DVD featuring the Making of Quake 4, as well as Quake 2 and both Quake 2 addon packs - The Reckoning and Ground Zero. What's amazing about this is both versions cost the same.



snd: 5/5 - absolutely no complaints, excellent music selection, great voice-acting
gfx: 4/5 - pretty as Doom 3 (in fact, aesthetically it's almost a carbon copy of Doom 3 - albeit a little bit lighter), character models are amazingly detailed, nice outdoor levels, too many Doom 3-like shadowy areas
playability: 4/5 - frenetic gameplay, addictive, pretty linear and exploration is almost entirely non-existent, weak plot, Quake 3-style multiplayer (w/o bots), vehicles feel a bit clumsy to control, dated AI
genre: sci-fi first-person shooter
release: October 2005
developer: Raven Software/id Software
publisher: Activision
Very_good
Overall: 81%


last 10 comments:

Nosferatu(12:26 PM EDT - Oct,28 2005 )
I think I'll get it. As long as I don't expect smth extraordinary I believe I'll remain satisfied.

xxxx(01:37 PM EDT - Oct,28 2005 )
@ 59 US, go ahead. LOL! I'll play Call of Duty 2 thanks. 8)

Nosferatu(06:34 PM EDT - Oct,28 2005 )
Me and my friends will get it for 10 bucks or maybe even less. You people might have problems with getting a pirated version, in Ukraine it's a problem to get a legit version... no it's not a problem, that's almost impossible! I've got a friend from Germany who comes to us every summer and drools with eyes wide open and tongue down on the floor: he has to pay 50-30 bucks for a game, here he can buy those for 10-5 $. Wonderland for him :)

gramulho(07:23 PM EDT - Oct,28 2005 )
I might be crazy, but the first paragraph is repeated twice. Btw, I love your site! I'm here everyday!

About quake 4... *cof cof* doom3 mod *cof cof*

xxxx(04:01 PM EST - Oct,30 2005 )
well I just got the game for free and so far played about an hour. From my view, settings pretty darn high.

-models are more polished than Doom3
-weapons are ok so far, no lean in sp sucks
-ai is dumb, but I believe I'm playing 'second' to hardest skill level.
-texture system still stinks, nice map design but textures make it look fake
(play cod 2 or even ut2k4, texturing is poor in doom, af, pixel shading cant make those bad textures any better) Look at your own player model. They insist on putting these trinkets on their costume however if you pay attention, it's just bitmaps and bad ones. Like the rivots on their suits.
-game play is linear as they come, and it's still constantly dark not much brighter than doom3, if you can believe that

based on my results of playing the single player, I imagine the fps is not that bad in MP. Even though I have the game, doubt I will buy it. Just don't see enough worth. HX did a good review. I got to check out this Huxley I have been hearing about.. See what it's about, from what I saw in my mag, looked pretty damn nice..

Nosferatu(04:20 AM EST - Oct,31 2005 )
Every texturemap is a bitmap. Those that are used for more sophisticated mapping techniques apply different actions on the bitmaps (procedures etc). But if the resolution is very low then the illusion of a believable world is shattered. Coming too close to an object results in a very unpleasant view. So even a normal-mapped character would look ugly if you use a low-res normal map.
I guess the engine was already slow so the extra resolution for textures would give a slide-show performance.

xxxx(02:37 PM EST - Oct,31 2005 )
well, turn on high quality on UT2k4. Textures are prettty damn impressive or even COD 2.. I don't lag. I think it's just a bad engine. I also don't see how anyone can sit there and say the graphics are amazing when in reality they aren't even with AF and AA all the way up.

As I was claiming from the start. Doom 3 and iD and John Carmack are overrated. The competition left them in the dark back at Quake 3. John might have been a Pioneer but he's nothing but another name now in a sea of MANY good developers. I guess when things start going bad, time to start spitting out continuations of old masters.

All in all, glad I didn't buy Quake 4. All in all, my satisfaction levels of quality are just too far out of reach for iD and Raven. And man, I don't know when I'll ever see light in Quake 4 but someone said there was more light! LOL! Where? at the end of the game?

Nosferatu(01:36 AM EST - Nov,01 2005 )
Well, I think AF and AA don't make the game look great. Probably my point of view is a bit biased, because I have bad eyesight, so I don't need any AA, I get it for free :) Agree, AF is very useful in some cases, especially when objects like grates on the floor are displayed, such kind of objects result into artifacts because of mipmap levels more than others. But what I really care about is artwork. I just finished Fable and I think it is more beautiful than some other games which are technologically much more advanced. I would say the graphics in Fable are amazing, even though the poly-count might be low at times, the shadows aren't as cool as the could be... etc. The awesome artwork compensates for those fancy shadows and other things.
So, if Q4 has better artwork than D3 has, I gladly believe it looks better. And I don't care for the texture resolution that much. It's not that ugly after all.

thejunglegod(10:44 PM EST - Dec,24 2005 )
I think Quake 4 is one of the better fps games ve played.Usually some games boast graphics and practically no gameplay,think doom 3.even though its a clone of doom i must admit that the game gt me gripped unlike doom in which i lost the interest after 3 levels.

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