15 Nov Gaming: Quake Live
Category: Gaming, Goodies

In this day and age, with a variety of handheld and TV-set bound consoles vying for the attention of the modern gamer, making a distinctly different and yet approachable game is a challenge worthy of a Nobel Prize. If there actually were such a thing, id Software‘s web-savvy Quake Live would be a worthy nominee.


Quake Live is actually the (almost) 10-years old Quake 3 Arena with a lot of tweaks and adjustments. Not only have the graphics been improved: the overall gameplay has been balanced, and the entire game is launched through a website that also facilitates chatting and meeting friends, keeping tracks of your statistics, and finding servers to play on. It’s also entirely free. There’s no catch.

A Quake 3 / Quake Live icon is included in this post, so you can put it in your Dock when this all sounds appealing.

It’s not a big secret that I’m a huge, long-time fan of Quake 3 Arena. More recent parts of the series failed to interest me, but Q3A has always fascinated me thanks to its pace, balance, and art direction and despite being almost ten years old. Since its release, it has been ported to a vast range of platforms (including the iPhone during the jailbreak days) and open-sourced by id Software, which was followed by a lot of free and non-free games coming out using its engine. Eliminate, an iPhone shooter recently released by ngmoco uses it, for instance. Quake 3 is still played in competitive ‘eSport’ tournaments and ladders, using the Challenge Promode Arena (CPMA) mod, much like the aged Counter-Strike 1.6. A true classic.


Apart from the practice mode, that lets you fight bots or try your tricks, the entire game is played online on servers in your vicinity. For me, server locations range from Amsterdam, to France, Germany, Poland, and the UK. This ensures a minimal ping time, which the pace of this game absolutely mandates. The slightest increase in your ping time can mean the difference between virtual life and death. Coupled with its social features like friend lists and realtime chatting (which is done via XMPP – the same protocol Gtalk and Jabber use), it’s a very nice integrated gaming platform. I hope to see more of these ‘web-based’ games, where the game is an actual native application as opposed to something done in Flash, but the online services are neatly knit together in an intuitive and usable way.


As a goodie, here’s an icon for a Fluid or Prism version of Quake Live, so you can put it in your dock as if it were any other game.

Grab Quake Live for free – Mac, Linux and of course Windows are all supported. My Quake Live profile is here, where you can also add me as a friend so you can play with or against me.

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7 Responses

  1. 1

    Nice icon! I’ll give it a shot :)

  2. 2

    But it’s a Quake III icon! :]
    Anyway, it looks way better than standard 16×16 one. :]

  3. 3

    Yep, good for use for Quake 3 or Quake Live, since both are brothers :)

  4. 4

    Hey! Very nice icon!

    Just tried QuakeLive – it is very addictive…I think you got me. Just don’t have much time, but it is like Eliminate for the iPhone but bigger :D

    Please accept me in QuakeLive, I’m AsKING, made you an invite.


  5. Great share, thanks!

  6. It’s a cool service but the web interface seems very very buggy… I’m having a very hard time even adding my friends; after clicking accept they disappear both from my invitation box and friends list, and all kinds of weird stuff… Accepting the friend request in Windows works, however o_O

    And you can’t challenge your friends! Only join a game they are in. No private matches. WTF? (please correct me if I’m wrong)

    Id’s not the developers on this project, and you can tell.

  1. […] realize that Quake Live was available for the Macintosh now. Thanks to Sebastiaan de With for letting me know (and for the fancy Fluid […]