Review by LOTRfan4ever

"A fitting sequel to one of the greatest series of all time."

Quake 4 is a direct sequel to Quake 2. For those of you who do not know, Quake 1 and 2 were mostly single-player focused, although they both packed a good multiplayer as well. Quake 3 Arena was 100% multiplayer, with no “story mode” at all. Quake 4 continues the story where Quake 2 left off. This game is mainly single-player focused, and although it does have a multiplayer mode, those expecting “Quake 4 Arena” will be in for a disappointment. With this in mind, let us move on to the actual review:

Graphics – 10/10

If I could give this category and 11/10, I would. Quake 4's graphics are better than anything on the market, including FEAR, Doom 3, Far Cry, Half Life 2, Call of Duty 2, or…wait for it…the next-generation consoles. The level of detail is simply amazing; the characters all look like real people, the textures are extremely sharp, the lighting/shadows and particles both look simply incredible. Please be warned, this game's beauty comes at a high price. Do not expect to experience a high level of graphics with anything less than a high-end computer from last generation. My computer is no slouch, it contains a regular GeForce 6800, 1GB of RAM, and a 2.8GHz Pentium 4. Even with these specs, I get slowdowns running at High Details, and a resolution of 1024x768. This issue aside, I cannot put into words how beautiful this game is. A picture is worth 1,000 words, I highly suggest finding some high-resolution-high-detail screenshots to see for yourself how good it looks.

Gameplay – 10/10

This game continues Quake 2's story, and thus keeps the elements of Quake 2's gameplay. The concept is simple: get a big gun, kill stuff, find some health and ammo, rinse, repeat. This game is a sequel to a game from 1997, and therefore it plays like a game from 1997. Please do not buy this game expecting a “super-realistic” game with such lame concepts as one-hit-your-dead and floating sniper scopes. This game is not about realism, it is about the Quake experience. It carriers over the Quake experience flawlessly and therefore receives a 10/10 in my book for doing such a good job at it.

Sound/Music – 8/10

The music in this game is starting to follow the trend of the “music” of today's games. Instead of actual music, it contains more ambient sounds that repeat over and over until you want to scream. What happened to ID's tradition of headbanger music? Where is Trent Renzor, Chris Vrenna, and Sonic Mayhem? The lack of music in this game is a disappointment, as it is just about the only thing that deviates from the Quake essence.

Despite the disappointment of the music, the sounds part of the game is just fine. Some of the bangs and booms are a bit generic, but nothing terrible.

Multiplayer – 9/10

This game continues the tradition of killer multiplayer in ID games. Deathmatch (DM), Team Deathmatch (TDM), Capture the Flag (CTF), and Tournament (Tourney) modes are all present. There is also an “Arena CTF” mode, which incorporates the four team powerups found in “Quake 3 Team Arena.” Doubler doubles your damage, Guard doubles your defense, Scout doubles your speed, and Ammo Regen makes your bullets replenish themselves. All around the multiplayer captures all the Quake elements from 1 and 2, but is not quite as insanely fast-paced as Quake 3's. One gripe I have is that the multiplayer is much more demanding than single player. A machine that plays singleplayer mode just fine might struggle in multiplayer. As a result, one may find themselves continually switching graphics settings.

Quake 4 is truly a fitting sequel to the Quake series. It keeps the essence of Quake (with the exception of the music) intact and improved upon. This game does not try to be Far Cry, Counter Strike, or Call of Duty. This game stands apart from the rest of the crowd in a genre of it's own: the Quake genre. And it does a killer job at it. The final score is an average of the groups, rounded off accordingly.

Final Score – 9/10

Quake 4 deserves the titles of Quake, with the only disappointment being the lack of good music. Kudos to ID and Raven for making this game, they truly outdid themselves.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 11/21/05

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