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Quake II Is 15, You Are Old

I remember when I turned 15. It was pretty unspectacular. I couldn’t drive yet, I didn’t really have much of a party to speak of, and hardly any of the entire Internet used it as an opportunity to fondly reminisce about rocket jumps and murder. But now, Quake II turns 15, and suddenly it gets the royal treatment. Bizarre, right? It really is just the darndest thing. Maybe everyone’s still waiting to leap out and surprise me. I bet that’s it. Any second now. While we’re waiting, though, I suppose we can discuss some crazy Quake II factoids. But only just for a bit. And you have to put on this party hat and pretend to be having fun. I demand it.

On the official Bethesblog, the publishing powerhouse used the occasion as an opportunity to dig out some of the legendary arena shooter’s dirtiest secrets. For example:

  • Only three artists made all the 2D and 3D art for the entire game.
  • One of the original suggested names for QUAKE II was WOR, but the game’s fast-paced, tactile feel felt closer to a QUAKE game than a new franchise.
  • ‘The Edge’ (Tim Willits’ favorite deathmatch level in QUAKE II or any other game), has over 50 trick jumps possible in the map. Tim only designed two of them, and the rest were discovered by the QUAKE II community.

Enlightening! But also, WOR? Really? That was 15 years ago. Fact is, there were only three videogames out at that point. id could’ve chosen almost any other name.

Still though, happy 15 years, Quake II. And happy probably-a-lot-more-years-than-that to everyone reading this. Did you all know that Gamecubes are “retro” now? Yep. But why lament our own fragile mortality when we can gleefully remember the times we put an end to other people’s? What’s your best Quake II memory? Favorite weapon? Level? Let’s leave no stone unturned and no jump pad un-sproinged.

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Nathan Grayson


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