Quake On! Non-Linear Quake 4 Campaign False Dawn

You're damn right that's a rusty corridor.

While QuakeCon rages away in Texas, gibsters stuck at home might feel a little left out. Chin up, little buddy: Quake’s coming to you. After missing its plan to launch during QCon 2013, Quake IV single-player mod False Dawn has launched alongside this year’s fragging festivities. It brings a new story with 90-120 minutes of non-linear Strogg-shooting and a few tweaks to good old Q4.

Its single-player side was pretty good fun, from what I remember, so sure, maybe I will revisit that so very brown and frightful planet of meaty cyborgs this weekend.

False Dawn has a new story about a Strogg superweapon or somesuch, complete with enthusiastic new voiced dialogue. Supposedly objectives which can be tackled in any order, and enemies and obstacles will change depending on what you prioritise. Things are prettied up too, thanks to a version of Sikkmod. It also adds a new weapon damage system which means more-armoured enemies won’t fall to bullets and shot as easily as meatbags. That is a list of features it has.

I did enjoy how Q4’s trickle of weapon upgrades meant even early guns were useful against later enemies, so hopefully this rebalancing doesn’t undo that. It was quite nice to revisit old favourites rather than inexorably scaling the number keys towards the rocket launcher as a go-to weapon, and crumbs, that souped-up nailgun was something all right.

As for how False Dawn looks rather than sounds, here’s a trailer, but bear in mind it’s from 2012:


  1. c-Row says:

    I can barely remember anything about Quake 4 except for the rather dull endgame area and the transformation sequence. Maybe it’s time to refreshen my memory.

    • PoulWrist says:

      Thinking back, I remember there was also a lengthy hover-tank sequence.

      And now that I look at those enemies, I kinda want to shoot them again… I somehow lost my copy of Q4 though :( but it may be for cheap on steam atm…

      *edit: checked steam, Q4 is indeed on sale, but only a 25% offer putting it down to 14.99€ which is a bit much.

      • Lemming says:

        It’s £11.24 on Green man gaming at the moment (so, steamkey), which is the best I can find it.

      • gabrielonuris says:

        You won’t be seeing it on sale very soon though. I’m saying this because I have it on my wishlist for years, and 25% off maybe is the best you’ll get. 75% or more is oddly impossible, not even on Summer and Winter sales. Speaking of which, I wish I could understand why some games on Steam simply deny to be on a decent sale, Quake 4 is one of them, together with Singularity, Transformers games, CoD titles, and so on…

        • Conor says:

          Singularity and the Transformers game had a reasonable discount in the Activision sale 2 or 3 months back. I snapped up Singularity with extreme prejudice, I’d been waiting for it to go on sale for literal years :P

      • Siimon says:

        Current Lowest Price: $11.99 at GameFly PC after coupon code JUL20OFF (Activates on Steam)
        Is is also $11.99 at GreenManGaming with P36EYA-K5JYKT-ABO7X9
        Historical Lowest Price: $4.34 at Nuuvem on Thu Aug 01 2013 (Info) [Also been <$6 three times on various services in the past year]

    • Sisco says:

      I remember running around a maze-like canyon area early in the game, shooting and getting bored real quick, thinking how shitty everything looked :/

      • Lemming says:

        Yeah the trenches, near the start. The game gets more visually interesting and much, much longer than you probably imagine.

    • The First Door says:

      That’s basically all I remember too… Although I remember that transformation sequence rather strongly. Also… wasn’t there something about a weapon you had to power up by going to different levels on some sort of train?

      Actually, that’s not entirely true, I remember the multiplayer being disappointing, but I suspect anything would have been after Q3.

    • XhomeB says:

      I remember it having nothing in common with Quake 2. The art design was different (worse), Stroggs lost their charm and character, the level design was nowhere near as good, the guns packed no punch, the movement&physics were sluggish.
      Not a terrible game, just… a horrible sequel to Q2 and totally un-Quakey.

    • Lemming says:

      The game was a solid corridor shooter let down by some ill-conceived vehicle sections and messy skybox textures, in my opinion. It was a worthy sequel to Quake 2, which considering it had to make that plot interesting, is a pretty impressive feat. Mind you, Raven Software have always been pretty decent.

      The true shame lies in Bethesda’s unwillingness to let the game sell on Steam for less than £15. Dishonored GOTY is on there for £6 at the moment, which puts that firmly in perspective.

      Rather than a Doom 4, I would be more excited for a Q4 ‘BFG Edition’ which perhaps nixes the vehicle sections entirely, gives it a graphical upgrade and balances and fosters a new multiplayer to Q3 levels for a new esport. It’d be cheaper for Bethesda/id as well.

    • aoanla says:

      I mostly remember some art and setting changes from Quake 2 (the setting change being the move to Strogg being a hive mind, rather than the “superiority of the toughest” warrior culture from Q2), vastly improved Iron Maiden designs, slightly worse general designs, a very upsetting mission where you have to kill a Strogg food processing creature in a horrific way for no good reason, a more fleshed out (if generic) plot, and a very annoying boss fight.

      Oh, and they removed the “Brains” enemy from Q2, which slightly saddened me.

  2. dethtoll says:

    Quake 4 was the best parts of Call Of Duty (at the time) and Doom 3. The idea of there being a fan campaign has me intrigued. Intrigued, I say!

  3. thelastpointer says:

    To this day I still can’t explain why did I like Quake 4 so much.

    • Lemming says:

      If you’re anything like me, it was the solid gunplay. The weapons just felt fun and right, which wasn’t the case in Doom 3.

      • Cooper says:

        Possibly. I really enjoyed Q4 but got bored by Doom 3 very quickly. Even if movement speed wasn’t very fast, Q4 felt nippy in the way Q2 did, Doom 3 felt very plodding.

        I also quite liked the aesthetics. Especially near the end.

        • Lemming says:

          Currently replaying it now and enjoying it, but it’s anything but nippy. I’m desperate for a speed mod, as I seem be fighting the Strogg from a wheelchair.

      • LionsPhil says:

        Yeah, I also remember being impressed that even in the endgame I was finding myself reaching for most of my range of arsenal, not just the few top-end guns.

    • unit 3000-21 says:

      For me it’s the feeling of being a part of a big military operation in Quake universe as opposed to single-handedly destroying whole Strogg army.

  4. Heliocentric says:

    When I got quake 4 the previous 600 hours I’d spent were in Eldar Scrolls and Battlefield, I was all ‘when does this open up’, it finally did in mod form.

  5. cpt_freakout says:

    Confession time: I didn’t even remember Quake IV existed. And I did play it.

  6. TheBigBookOfTerror says:

    Quake IV had Peter Stormare being grumpy and awesome, so therefore it is my favourite game ever.

  7. Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

    I remember a scripted sequence where I was part of a team storming a Strogg bunker. It was amazing, feeling like part of a team in a single player game. I thought it had to be the future of manshoots.