Quake Champions is free if you get it now (or much later)


I’ve never been a Quaker. I’ve always thought a life spent pursuing peace and friendship through a religious lens was at odds with the Quaker’s requirement that you spend 5 hours of every day playing a version of Id Software’s hyper-violent shooter, but I won’t pretend to understand such ecclesiastical matters.

I just got myself all tangled up over something that’s quite simple, now that I’ve managed to spell it out. Quake Champions is an upcoming free-to-play arena shooter, only for now it’s in paid for early access. Except for right now and up until June 18th – until which you can get free permanent access to the early access version if you download it and play at least one match. If you’re like me and have barely dipped your toes into Quake before, this seems like a good opportunity to fix that.

Well, maybe an OK opportunity. At this point playing without paying only gives you access to one Champion, which is what this latest iteration of Quake calls classes. You do at least get all the maps and game modes, but if you want to play around with the defining feature of Quake Champions you’ll need to pony up £13/$20/€20 for the Champions pack. Note that that normally costs £20, and nets you “all current and future Champions alongside custom matchmaking and other in-game goodies”.

If you’ve got Quake on your brain, that might be because a few days ago Dominic Tarason told you about a big ‘ol Quake Champions update that added bots, gore and balance tweaks.

I might have been content to let this one pass me by, but Bunker Punks recently got me in its robo-clutches. That’s a single player roguelikelike, but it puts a similar emphasis on running and jumping while gunning – so now I’m keen to pit my strafing skills against other people’s.

You can download Quake Champions for free on Steam until 6pm GMT/10am PST on June 18th, and remember that you’ll need to play one match if you want it for keepsies. There’s no word on when it’ll come out of early access.


  1. Ham Solo says:

    No, thanks. I’ll stick to Quake Live. No “classes” and “abilities” and “fucked up matchmaker” there.

  2. Hunchback says:

    It’s really worth a shot (oh lol), to be honest. I’ve been in it since closed beta and it’s constantly improving.

    It’s biggest problem is, as with all things Quake, that it’ll never be Q3A. And that probably eliminates 60% or more of the player base who will remain forever stuck in their childhood. Other than that, it’s a fine game, fast paced, feels right, the weapons are practically 1:1 Q3A except 1, and it’s actually F2P, especially after the last patch.

  3. Evan_ says:

    I loved Quake back in the day, but I wasn’t hardcore enough to be good at it, or to still play it.

    I also like F2P titles. With a reasonable grindwall. Rental only characters doesn’t sound like it.

    I decided to check on the new F2P Unreal Tournament instead.

  4. Ribonizer says:

    I’m pretty annoyed that I bought in, wanting the do custom matches with Bots only to find out Phase 1 is basically only bots with people who won’t want to play with boths. They’re only used as replacement for ragequiting players and long match making queues. In which case, putting bots with players who were hoping to have a full team of human players.

    Meanwhile those who want to actually play with bots, say in practice and custom match. Sorry no. Thanks for buying it!

    Worse yet, since it’s “bought” via an upgrade microtransaction bought using funds from my steam wallet. Refund is not an option.

    • ZXDunny says:

      No bots? I only ever played Q3A with bots as I cannot bear to play with other humans. I was tempted to get this when they mentioned bots above, but if I have to play against other actual people then I guess no.

  5. ludde says:

    Ugh, shitty free to play tactics before it’s even out. No thanks.

  6. Dawkinzz says:

    Just create an Only Railgun TDM, disable that garbage abilities and enable custom games to everyone. Thats all u have to do to get increase the player base you greedy bastards. Just base on Q3A, it’s like the developers never played it…

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