I’m old enough to remember when Quake was the first-person shooter, grabbing the spotlight from Doom thanks to its more advanced visuals. Seriously, my friend Nick and I would spend hours in the game just marveling at how we could see enemy remains from different angles. 3D models were a huge deal back then. Naturally, I was excited to see how one of my most fondly remembered shooters holds up in 2021. Turns out, it doesn’t. At least not at first.
Sure Quake has that fancy 3D modeling, but going back to it now, I can admit that it’s missing its predecessor's personality and colorful style. The early sections of the original Quake are more-or-less textbook examples of a Dull Brown Shooter. As a result, many of the enemies are bland, most of the weapons aren’t interesting, and many of the environments are painfully basic—even with all the secrets.
“There’s something about playing Quake with all the graphical options turned up to full, but with the blocky textures intact, that practically sings.”