Location: Van Buren, AR
Location: Van Buren, AR
Wow. Those are the three words that describe my second impressions of the fourth Quake, or Quake 4, id Software's latest proverbial addition to the figurative table of some analogous king feasting not on video games, but food, which is like video games in the sense that he enjoys the food. I enjoy the video games, and though I did not eat Quake 4, I certainly did digest it, and digest it I did!
There are five necessary points to address when reviewing a video game. These five points allow for as fair a review as possible, they are (in no particular order):
Single Player Gameplay
Storyline (single player)
Each point addressed will be rated on a possible score out of 1,000,000,000,000 Extreme Points. These Extreme Points will then be added up to form a complete Extremely Radical Points total, which will then be printed and posted on my wall to be read by my 20 cats and a random homeless man as of yet unnamed.
The graphics in Quake 4 are, in a word, absolutely amazing! Based on the Quake 3: Arena engine, they simply do not show their age. Perhaps this is due in part to Valve Software's incredible attention to texture detail, or perhaps to America Maggie's superb modelling abilities, whatever the case Quake 4 does not fail to please. In fact, it pleases.
I had a chance to sit down with John Carmack, director of public relations for Atari, who are distributing the game. Here's a snippet of our conversation:
Me (Brandan): Hello, Mr. Carmike. How are you?
John Carmack: I'm well, I'm well, I'm well.
Me (Brandan): I like your game.
John Carmack: Ohhhh, yeah.
Me (Brandan): It has nice graphics.
John Carmack: Hehe.
Me (Brandan): Hah.
As you can plainly see from this conversation, John Carmack is a genius. He frequently posts on Slashdot about technical issues, and often times I do not even know what the words he is using mean! He graduated from MIT with flying colors and a 100% grade point average. He also took the heavyweight title from Mike Tyson in 1999, and later developed a cure for cancer that was used to free Africa from the slavechains of AIDs.
These ingredients, when mixed together, form a great dish. John Carmack is a master chef, and his keyboard is his chef knife, and his hair sort of like a chef hat but a little less inclined to blow off in a quick convertible. What we have is a great looking game based on the Quake 3: Arena engine showing no signs of age and a lot of signs pointing in the general direction of 'awesome.'
The only downside to the graphics is that the model design seems a bit too reminiscent of Quake 2: Arena, a video game which had you fighting the Strongs for control of the known universe. Many of the models are recycled, showing a complete lack of inspiration on part of the model making team. Luckily the amount of intelligently designed weaponry, like the never-before-seen nailgun and the spanking new hyper-blaster, more than makes up for the single player mishaps in modelling.
Graphics Score: 1,000,728,983,110,002 Extreme Points!
The Quake 4 menu system is very intuitively designed. It was built with the blind and deaf in mind, having both visual and audio cues for when your mouse cursor hovers above certain choices. There are also very brightly designed logos and interesting button shapes and choices. Overall this is the most extreme menu system I've seen in ages, and clicking through every option is a video game in itself. If you enjoyed Monkey Island, check out the Quake 4 menu system. You won't be disappointed.
Menu System Score: 10/10
Holy cow? Did I just hear a rocket launcher? Yes I did, because I am literally shell-shocked by how shockingly brutal and realistic Quake 4's display of futuristic war is. Your guns fire and people die, their guns fire and you die. If both of your guns fire both of you die, and if neither of you fire neither of you die. The robotic Stroggs, an obvious play off the Strongs from Quake 2: Arena, are very large and very angry. John Carmack explains in this quick interview:
Me (Brandan): Why are the Stroggs so angry?
John Carmack: None of them have fathers.
Me (Brandan): So how do they make babies?
John Carmack: lol poop
Me (brandan): omg ur bad
So not only does Quake 4 give you full blown, in-your-face, sit-down-right-now, blow-you-out-of-your-seat action, it also delivers in an educational way. John Carmack cites Sigmund Freud as an inspiration for such deep gameplay elements, as showcased by his Freudian slip at a recent video gaming expo:
John Carmack: The Strogg are a lot like dad....Oh my god, did I say dad? LOL (Laugh out Loud) I meant to say tacos.
For this subtle amount of storyline detail, Quake 4 receives a score of 5 stars.
Imagine my excitement as I unwrapped Quake 4, popped in the diskette, installed the game, then set it up to match my personality and finally started a server when I noticed it: there were no people playing! Not a single person other than myself on the server. I tried restarting the server at least 20 times, but still no results. Finally I gave up, and instead played some Quake 3: Arena free for all on the world-famous Q3DM17. I've heard that Quake 4 is a lot like Quake 3: Arena, and judging by how exciting my time was spent playing Q3DM17 I can honestly say Quake 4 has some amazing features. Here's to a long life for the best multiplayer game around!
Multiplayer Score: 100%
The Extreme Radical Score for Quake 4 is 20,000,148,088,099,112!!!! An ESReality Review Crew record by at least 7 points!
Edited by Nicky at 04:32 CST, 2 January 2008 - 13430 Hits