Technically it was 10 years ago last Saturday, but who’s counting. To coincide with it, Quake Expo is running for 11 days to help celebrate the event. The idea is pretty simple, showcase and release various Quake related stuff. QExpo was something that started at around about the time I left the scene, which was about 4 / 5 years ago now. I’ve sort of kept tabs on what was going on but not that well. For this QExpo though I thought I’d try writing some reviews again and RPG is very kindly posting my chaff on his QExpo booth.

It’s also been interesting to see what’s happening with the Speedmaps as well since I used to run the sessions for it when it first started (for Quake. Speedmapping technically started with Quake 3). It’s changed hands a few times since then but it’s still going strong. They’re pumping out some interesting maps, but the problem I always found with it was that you end up with only a couple of people willing to consistently map. That then leads to maps in a particular style.

QExpo also managed a bit of scoop by interviewing John Romero (part one, part two). Everyone knows the story of how after Quake was published John left to start Ion Storm with Tom Hall, but the thing that made me laugh was that the Quake we all know and love is actually the result of id freaking out and being totally pushed for time (yes, the company that says it’ll be ready when it’s done) and scrapping it’s original plans:

John Romero …Quake was one original idea that got changed 7 months before shipping to something totally different and the name remained because the world already knew what the game was called.

…Originally the game was going to be much more like an adventure or experience – you traveled through a full 3D world with your massive hammer which increased in power as you defeated enemies…

…we reached a boiling point where some of the dev team was very worried that we wouldn’t be able to release the game within a year after our first year of development and they started to freak out. We held a vote and the vote was to just slap in DOOM-style weapons and polish it off and get it out the door.

Emphasis mine. Congrats to scar3crow on pulling the interview together, but ouch, it’s not very positive. Hardly something you want read to celebrate Quake’s 10th birthday. More questions about this memories and recollections would have been nice… but then again maybe not. If you’ve read Masters of Doom you’ll already know the turmoil id went through getting Quake out the door (excellent read btw).

Anyhoo, having gone back to Quake for QExpo it’s made me realise just how much fun it still is. I think it’s the only game I’ve kept on every machine I’ve had since I first installed it. Oh and in other news I’m very, very, very slowly recreating MPQArchive in PHP and hope to have it done before the 20th anniversary…

By Paul

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