Excerpts Cocerning Quake from a 1994 Doom2 Interview
"In most of our game we’ll write something and just throw it away, because we’ve got better ideas of the way we want our file structures or whatever. Like Quake, our next game, has nothing to do with the way the Doom world are. The data and technology are totally different. So the Doom editor is useless to us; our licensees use that.
Quake will require a totally new editor. That’s going to take a long time to do. With Quake, there isn’t even a premise yet. There’s just kind of a feel for the thing. There isn’t any story… Well, there is kind of a vague story, but there isn’t anything solid because halfway through the development of the game we’ll probably have to throw it out and redo it.”
"With Quake, we’re going to move the design along further. The 3D engine has gotten to the point where it’s going to be almost as much fun to experience the environment as it is to actually play the game. You should be walking around in Quake just in awe, looking around and going, "This looks awesome!"
And there won’t be background music. In every game we’ve done there have always been background music and sound effects, right? The soundtrack is always there while you’re playing. There will be no soundtrack. We’re really going to make you feel like you’re in a real world. There will be bugs and birds flying around. You’ll be looking around, going, “This is great! Hey, I wonder what’s over there.” So you start walking over toward some forest. There will be a lot more cinematic things in the game. Of course we’ll never stop the game just for a cinematic. We never do that. What we will do, like this: Say you’re walking into a forest, which looks just awesome, and all of the sounds are different, and it’s dark, and to the right you see this dark cave or something. As soon as you look at that cave, something is going to happen. You’ll hear some kind of low, evil kind of sound, and something will trigger, even just from your looking at this area. Maybe some red eyes will start glowing in there and maybe a growl or something. So you can take off or you can charge in there, whatever you want to do.
Of course, you’ll still be able to pulverize stuff. That’s just something to do and it’s a lot of fun. I mean, when you play DeathMatch, it’s just great blowing people away. It is just totally fun. And we think that’s still really important. You get lots of feedback from it. Its a fun thing that you can’t do in real life unless you want to go to jail, and its a guy thing. So you’re still gonna kill things in Quake, but not like in Doom II. In Doom II, you mow down things by the dozen. In Quake you’ll fight, say, three monsters at the max. Probably you’ll fight three guys, but it’s going to be like a virtual fighter. There will be more skill involved in the fighting. You won’t be holding the gun in front of you. In the game you’ve played before, you’re still kind of distanced from the death. You’re pointing the shotgun at something, you’re pulling the trigger, and it shoots and the thing is dead. All you had to do was press the button - you move the mouse and press the button - and it’s as easy as that. In Quake, you’ll have to really kill things. You won’t just press the trigger and hit it, you’ll have to really beat the living shit out of the thing until it’s dead. So you’ll have this huge hammer and you’ll pound it into blood paste on the floor, and you’re going to have to take a while, too. You’re going to have to work on it. You won’t just have this arrow point-and-click kind of thing.”
Quake will be the ultimate. You are not going to believe Quake. Quake is going to be an industry when it comes out.
Interviewer: *Grunt of disbelief.*
It will! We’re going to encourage people to start businesses based on Quake. We’ll upload the server software for Quake onto the net, which means that anyone can take the Quake game and create a whole new game off it, a totally different game off the server software. Like a location-based center. We’re going to allow people to go location-based Quake as much as they want. No fees. We upload the server software and if you want to start a location-based Quake center, do it. The only way we make money is that you have to buy the client. So let’s say someone wants to start a location-based Quake center and they think this SGI is an awesome powerhouse server that can supply 10 nodes with no problem. So they buy this awesome SGI machine, they recompile Quake on the machine because we’ve supplied all the source code, and then the code that runs on the PCs - the guy has to buy from us. So we just sold 10 copies of the game to this guy; that’s it. We sold 10 copies of the game and we’re happy. And the guy got himself a business where people come in and pay him to let them play Quake. It’s gonna be great, we’re going to let people create new games.
The game industry will really have kind of a tough time with it, because we’re going to give away the ultimate game engine for free and let people create whatever they want. There won’t be any licensing-the-technology thing. It will just be “Buy the client from us.” There’s gonna be kind of a mini-shakedown-type thing about who’s going to take the Quake technology and create games and who isn’t. I mean, why waste your own development effort when the coolest 3D engine is out there? And we’ll develop another one and do the same thing.
So we’ll supply you with the industry while everyone else is using it for cool stuff. And [the users] can rewrite the rules of the game - no problem - because they have the server software to create any game they want based off it. And they have this incredible 3D universe where they can create any kind of game they want and they don’t have to pay for it, except for the client, which interprets all the information being sent and does the actual 3D rendering and everything. So Quake will be huge when it comes out.
We think that when people get the game, most of them should have a fun time. The people who won’t have a fun time are people who we consider are going into the dark ages; they should consider upgrading. You need to look at the benchmark systems that people have - what does everyone have? Most of them have 486s. So even Quake, when it comes out in the fall of next year, is going to be built for a 486; it isn’t going to be built for a Pentium.