Author Topic: FPS NIGHTMARES  (Read 82337 times)

Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1110 on: April 08, 2021, 10:42:23 AM »
Edit: New page so quoting your excellent review.

Quake 3 Arena (1999)



 

RELEASE DATE: 2nd December, 1999

STORY: Literally none.

MUSIC: Another great soundtrack - many of the same industrial and dnb sort of influences that Unreal Tournament has, but a "heavier" feel.

NICE GIBS, HONEY: Quake 3 Arena and Unreal Tournament are natural competitors, releasing so close to each other. There's eternal debate, which has gone on for over two decades now, as to which is better. So, in this post I'll take a look at Quake 3, and then compare it with UT99 for the ULTIMATE DEATHMATCH.

The review will be very short, as UT's was, because there's not a lot to say beyond "play it yourself". The arsenal of weapons is wonderfully balanced and all are fun to use, the singleplayer bot AI is great, and the thrill of running around firing rockets into your friends' faces is still unsurpassed by most modern multiplayer FPS games.

Gameplay often leads to the same sort of state as Unreal Tournament, where combat becomes rhythmic and almost instinctive. Being Quake, the game also has rocket-jumping and strafe jumping, both of which will give you the edge if you master them. Rocket-strafe-jump your way around a corner at 120mph and obliterate your enemies. Unless someone else is also rocket jumping at the same time, in which case DIE.

So, when compared with Unreal Tournament... I have to give it to UT, no question. Here's a few very arbitrarily-selected points of comparison:

Weapons: UT99's selection of weapons is incredible and unconventional, while Quake sticks you with the usuals - rocket launcher, shotgun, minigun, plasma gun, the only more exotic one being the electric thingy. The tradeoff is that UT's weapons are less balanced. Every weapon in Q3 feels perfectly tweaked, while UT has shit like the fucking BioRifle, which nobody uses. Regardless, Q3 never matches the highs of the Flak Cannon. But Q3's BFG is ace.

Level Design: Q3's maps are designed with fast-paced combat in mind. They're small, they're often just a couple of symmetrical corridors leading into big rooms, and many of them are quite flat. The plus side of this is that the maps are intended to have players constantly in combat with each other with nowhere to hide or flee, but the downside is that the maps can oftentimes feel like they're a relic from an earlier age of FPS games, when flat corridors were all we had. UT on the other hand has many big maps with a lot of verticality and layouts that take a bit of time to get to grips with. UT wins on this one for me, not least because it does still have some very small, very tight maps that give you a Q3-esque experience of getting constantly fucking shot.

Visuals: The Unreal engine and the Quake 3 engine both look amazing, and we'll be seeing a shitton more of the Quake 3 engine later in the thread. Q3, much like the first two Quake games, tends to have a very dull, industrial art style, with levels being an unending parade of browns and greys representing abstract rooms. UT, on the other hand, has a pretty amazing amount of visual variety, taking you from ancient castles to outer space to ocean-floor bases to high-speed trains, all with vibrant and striking colours.

Music: Unreal Tournament absolutely runs away with it. This isn't even my opinion, it's objectively true. Both soundtracks are great, but UT's is next level.

Gunplay: Both absolutely excellent. It's essentially down to taste - UT's weapons are more esoteric and take a while to learn, while Q3's weapons will feel immediately familiar to anyone who's played basically any 90s FPS. Either way, both games offer a first-rate combat experience.

Movement: Both games have very satisfying movement systems with fair rules, but Quake 3 has rocket jumping and strafe jumping that lets you go at half the speed of light, so Quake 3 wins this one.

Bot AI: Again, both top of the range. UT might just edge it out slightly.

Also worth mentioning that UT has a much wider selection of gamemodes, including the then-unique Assault mode. Another point is that Unreal Tournament has a little bit of cool worldbuilding and setting to dig into, while Quake 3 has quite literally no story at all - not a weakness of Quake 3, since no story is necessary, but rather the icing on the cake for Unreal Tournament.

On balance, while the games are very obviously begging to be pitted against each other, it's not quite that clear - Quake 3 aims to offer a much tighter deathmatch-focused experience, while UT has a bit of a broader scope with a different style of gameplay thanks to the weapons. If we have to make them fight, though, UT is my pick for the winner.

FINAL RATING: Unreal Tournament might be my favourite of the two, but Quake 3 Arena is still another blast of insane fast-paced fun. Anyone who bought both games back in 1999 couldn't go wrong. 4 Gib Clouds out of 5.



THE GAME SUMMARISED IN A BOTTOM QUOTE:


UT definitely the winner for many of the reasons you mention. I'd also add that I didn't find Quake 3 to be that much of an improvement of Quake 2 multiplayer but that's probably just me. I played more Quake 2 multiplayer than Quake 3, but more Unreal Tournament than both of them.

Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1111 on: April 08, 2021, 10:54:30 AM »
I had both UT and Quake 3 and enjoyed both, but I preferred Quake 3. UT is so stuffed with alt-fire modes and crazy features and weapons, which was great fun when you're 13, but after a year or two of playing both online I found I preferred the more pared-back Q3 approach.

Mind you they both faded into irrelevance once I discovered Team Fortress Classic.

Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1112 on: April 08, 2021, 11:00:30 AM »
Also one of the same pricks who insisted it was pronounced "Rouge Spear" borrowed my copy of Quake 3 and gave the CD back snapped in half.

Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1113 on: April 08, 2021, 11:04:53 AM »
I had both UT and Quake 3 and enjoyed both, but I preferred Quake 3. UT is so stuffed with alt-fire modes and crazy features and weapons, which was great fun when you're 13, but after a year or two of playing both online I found I preferred the more pared-back Q3 approach.
I had the opposite experience, all those crazy features and weapons kept me playing it for longer. I got bored with Quake 3 pretty quickly. The visuals and music also helped stop that with UT, it still looks pretty great today whereas Q3 doesn't.

I just watched a couple of gameplay videos and Quake 3 doesn't appeal to me in the slightest whereas I'm tempted to fire up UT again after watching a gameplay video...

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1114 on: April 08, 2021, 11:16:10 AM »
Hold on, I think you edited those Bottom quotes.

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1115 on: April 08, 2021, 03:49:13 PM »
Also one of the same pricks who insisted it was pronounced "Rouge Spear" borrowed my copy of Quake 3 and gave the CD back snapped in half.

I had a similar experience.  I lent my friend my copy of Grand Theft Auto, only to receive the CD back coated with a thick layer of dried in strawberry jam, all over the readable side of the disc.

Hold on, I think you edited those Bottom quotes.

Definitely not.  I have an impeccable memory and fondly remember Richmond's line about multiplayer deathmatch shooters.

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1116 on: April 08, 2021, 04:01:27 PM »
I should give Unreal Tournament another go, but the thing I love about Q3A is all the mods it has spawned, particularly Urban Terror, which counts for most of the people who still play on the Q3 engine, albeit Urban Terror is now standalone and has developed beyond ioquake3 (the last and still working version of original Q3 engine).

And I became quite adept at tweaking Q3A via the console (when CPU was an issue).

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1117 on: April 08, 2021, 04:15:14 PM »
Hold on, I think you edited those Bottom quotes.

Contacted Rik via séance to check, and he assures me that was definitely the original line. Some viewers experienced an audio glitch which oddly made the line sound kind of like "one thing better than having a great play".

I had both UT and Quake 3 and enjoyed both, but I preferred Quake 3. UT is so stuffed with alt-fire modes and crazy features and weapons, which was great fun when you're 13, but after a year or two of playing both online I found I preferred the more pared-back Q3 approach.

I had the opposite experience, all those crazy features and weapons kept me playing it for longer.

This is the core of the difference between the two games, I think - it's easy to see why Q3A became the choice for esports. It's a straightforward battle of skill, where anyone familiar with FPS can drop straight into it and have a chance at winning right off the bat. Weapons are the kind that appear in every other FPS game, level designs are simple and intuitive, and weapons are always spawned in easy-to-reach areas.

A new player, even one very skilled at FPS, will get steamrolled in UT by players more familiar with the game, because you need to learn and then master all the different firing modes (including things like the alt-fire-primary-fire combo for the Shock Rifle, how to use the Razorjack effectively, the arc of the alt-fire on the Flak Cannon and when to use it over the primary fire, etc) and levels require the player to play repeatedly to learn the full layout, along with the out-of-the-way areas in which the best weapons spawn.

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1118 on: April 08, 2021, 04:16:00 PM »
Q3A is so buttery smooth. It just feels better than UT and that always edged it for me, much as I loved both.

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1119 on: April 08, 2021, 04:44:31 PM »
UT alternate-fire only. And I’d know if you didn’t do alternate, I just would.

Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1120 on: April 08, 2021, 07:05:46 PM »
Quake 3 is unequalled in terms of immediacy, I think. Especially for a multiplayer game of the time. It felt like what used to be called an arcade experience - just jump directly in, everything felt real and intuitive from the first nanosecond you played. Totally absorbing, the moment shooters really surpassed one-on-one fighters and racing games as the most immersive and immediate form of game. And the console ports mostly seemed great too, at least what I saw of them.

It was the last time I was really wowed by graphics too. Everything since has felt more or less incremental but Q3 felt like a huge leap forward in the way that DOOM, Mario 64, Quake, etc. all did. And it ran buttery smooth on my old PC - which chugged a bit with Half Life, Unreal Tourney, SS2 and other games mentioned in this thread. Even Shogo. Whereas Q3 shifted at a buttery FPS even over dial up internet, it was amazing. I remember trying to make it drop frames by blasting the thunderbolt or angling in the curved arches to see if the engine would falter. Seeing Q3 in action versus how it looked (boring grey and brown rooms) in magazine screenshots was such a pleasant surprise.

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1121 on: April 09, 2021, 10:57:33 AM »
I liked that map in UT where it was just two towers connected by a bridge of rock floating about in space and you just nuked each other from the towers.

Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1122 on: April 09, 2021, 11:51:01 AM »
I liked that map in UT where it was just two towers connected by a bridge of rock floating about in space and you just nuked each other from the towers.
Easy way to get multiple mmmmmmonster kills by sniping bot cunts from one of the towers as they spawn.

Lemming

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1123 on: April 14, 2021, 10:30:24 PM »
Starting the final game of the 1990s, MORTYR. Played this one before and it's wonderfully atrocious, a real load of shit. Looking forward to trying to summarise the plot.

As a taste of what's to come, here's what PCGamingWiki has to say about it:

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1124 on: April 14, 2021, 11:46:48 PM »
I am so insanely excited for the reviews of TimeSplitters 1 & 2 (and the games inevitably not living up to my fever-dream adoration) I don’t know how to describe it. Gonna be massive!

Lemming

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1125 on: April 16, 2021, 04:25:37 AM »




RELEASE DATE: December 30th, 1999

STORY: Germany won World War II. Just go with it. Anyway, in the year 2093, Earth is faced with an apocalypse, which is apparently because of Nazism, so a man is sent to the year 1944 to change the outcome of the war.

MUSIC: Just blares the fuck out from the CD!

HALT: With an awful engine, mediocre graphics, terrible combat, batshit yet almost absent story, shit AI and dodgy level design, here's MORTYR!

Before you jump into the thrilling world of 1944, you first have to get the game working. This is a game in itself on modern systems - everything's tied to your processor speed, meaning that booting the game up (if you manage to install and launch it without any disasters) will greet you with a complete audiovisual clusterfuck in which everything moves at well over five times the speed its supposed to.

Using a trusty piece of third party software, I set the game to run at 40 FPS... which it did, kind of. It sometimes jumped to several hundred FPS. Whatever. Extra challenge. You can explain it away in the story as being a time travel side effect or some shit.

The adventure of getting Mortyr to run is similar to the adventure the devs had trying to get it published. Read more here on Wikipedia if you like, it's pretty funny.

Either way, with a bit of luck, the game eventually runs, and it's shit! Levels are poorly laid out - made worse by the fact half the fucking game is in pitch darkness, as is the custom with many late 90s 3D games, for some reason. Levels are either laughably straightforward or confusingly laid out, and virtually no care is given to enemy placement. The first level has you assault a castle, for example. If you were a game developer, where might you place enemies to try and make this fun? On the battlements, perhaps? Maybe snipers on the battlements and some machine-gunners in the courtyard? Nah, there's just three guys placed on top of each other in the doorway to the castle, who will just as soon start glitching out and sprinting in place as shoot at you.

It's for the best anyway, because the AI is such a shambles that any placement of enemies would go out the window in about 30 seconds anyway as everyone just rushes towards you in a beeline.

That's half the story on why combat sucks, the other half is that your weapons are almost universally unfun to use. The crosshair lies about where your bullets will actually hit, and if you're not using the MP40 or MG42 you might as well just not bother at all. Later on, you go to the future of 2093, where you get a new aresnal of laser weapons and such, which are at least a little bit more fun to use.

The biggest load of bullshit ever - and the game loves doing this - is that enemies will spawn behind you. This happens when you reach certain triggers, and if you turn around fast enough, you can watch them materialise. This is not because the Nazis are warping in across space and time or anything cool, it's just because the devs fucked it up.

The one good thing you can say in the game's favour is that it has a bit of variety - the World War 2 levels take you through a number of varied landscapes, and the future-based levels (which make up the bulk of the game) look... mostly like shit, but still, it's the future with ray guns and all that shit.

Could write a bit more - about the enemy types (or lack thereof), for example - but really, I doubt anyone's going to play this, I don't know why I played it, so...

FINAL RATING: Awful game to end an incredible decade. 1.5 Desperate Attempts To Make It Run out of 5. If it weren't for numerous visual and technical issues, it might have scraped a 2/5, but with the FPS suddenly and randomly jumping to about 500 at times, occasionally causing me to walk through fucking walls and off the map, I'm subtracting that crucial half a point. Unfair, maybe, but then again the devs shouldn't have tied the game physics to the fucking processor.



THE GAME SUMMARISED IN A PEEP SHOW QUOTE:


That's it, the 90s is over. Thank fuck. Never doing that again. Compared to the glacial pace of the thread in recent times, 2000 should be fairly brisk, since I've already played and written prelimary reviews for a few of the games. Things will only really slow down when I have to force myself to play KISS: Psycho Circus.

Going to do a bunch of administrative stuff now, including trying to catalog all the reviews so far and write a 1999 write-up.
« Last Edit: April 16, 2021, 04:36:10 AM by Lemming »

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1126 on: April 16, 2021, 11:26:41 AM »
The 2000s was my era of FPS nonsense, looking forward to these.

Apologies if I missed this - is there a list of games that will be reviewed? Or is it more fun having them be a surprise each time?

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1127 on: April 16, 2021, 12:53:39 PM »
https://youtu.be/oMl2KDrJeEA

Here is the bit everyone wanted to see: Reichschancellor Adolf Hitler himself who is proper on one by the time you meet.

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1128 on: April 16, 2021, 01:17:02 PM »
Aw, shame to end on a bum note, but the review was funny, at least. Have there been reviews of GoldenEye or Perfect Dark? Or does being in the N64 write them out of it?

Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1129 on: April 16, 2021, 02:41:13 PM »
with the FPS suddenly and randomly jumping to about 500 at times, occasionally causing me to walk through fucking walls and off the map, I'm subtracting that crucial half a point
Well the thread is called FPS NIGHTMARES, after all.

Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1130 on: April 16, 2021, 04:40:15 PM »
https://youtu.be/oMl2KDrJeEA

Here is the bit everyone wanted to see: Reichschancellor Adolf Hitler himself who is proper on one by the time you meet.
A lot of games make it so it is impossible to kill children, not seen one with invincible Hitler before.

Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1131 on: April 16, 2021, 04:57:17 PM »
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LEAVE IT!! LEAVE IT!!

FOR THE THOUSANDTH TIME!

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1132 on: April 16, 2021, 05:48:34 PM »
Apologies if I missed this - is there a list of games that will be reviewed? Or is it more fun having them be a surprise each time?

In the early days there was a list, but since I kept discovering new games mid-year and occasionally having to drop games due to technical issues etc, it's now a surprise, to me as much as anyone else!

Aw, shame to end on a bum note, but the review was funny, at least. Have there been reviews of GoldenEye or Perfect Dark? Or does being in the N64 write them out of it?

Console games have been a bit all over the place so far - I reviewed some where there was a PC port (PowerSlave EX) or I had a physical console with a copy available (Medal of Honor), but for the most part it's just been PC games. I've got a list of console games to try at some point, and I've been looking into emulating Perfect Dark to play as part of 2000.

PS2 games should be a bit easier because the emulators allow for binding the thumbstick to the mouse. Absolutely not how the games are meant to be played, but it's surprisingly functional when you get used to it.

Lemming

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1133 on: April 17, 2021, 05:57:39 AM »
Every game so far:

Quote
1992
Wolfenstein 3D 3/5

1993
The Terminator: Rampage 1/5
Blake Stone: Aliens of Gold 3/5
Doom 4/5

1994 (Retrospective)
Operation: Body Count 3/5
The Elder Scrolls: Arena 2/5
System Shock 5/5
Doom 2 4/5
Super Noah's Ark 3D 1/5
Marathon 4/5
Rise of the Triad 2.5/5
Heretic 5/5
Quarantine 3.5/5

1995 (Retrospective)
Star Wars: Dark Forces 3.5/5 (later revised to 4/5)
Descent 3/5 (I rated this too low as well, deserved 3.5 or 4)
Jumping Flash!  ROBBIT/5
CyberMage: Darklight Awakening 2/5
Witchaven 3/5
William Shatner's TEKWAR Shatner/5
Hexen 3.5/5
The Terminator: Future Shock 3.5/5
BONUS THING: The Terminator (1990)
Marathon 2 2.5/5
In Pursuit of Greed 2.5/5
Mortal Coil: Adrenalin Intelligence 1/5

1996 (Retrospective)
Duke Nukem 3D 3.5/5
Strife 3/5
PowerSlave (console version) 5/5
PowerSlave (DOS version) 3/5
Alien Trilogy 2/5
Quake 4/5
The Elder Scrolls 2: Daggerfall 4/5
Eradicator 3.5/5

1997 (Retrospective)
Blood 5/5
Outlaws 4/5
Hexen 2 3/5
Quake 2 2.5/5
Turok: Dinosaur Hunter 4/5
Chasm: The Rift 3/5
Star Wars: Jedi Knight: Dark Forces 2 3.5/5
Star Trek: Generations 3/5
Redneck Rampage 2/5
Shadow Warrior 3.5/5

1998 (Retrospective)
Klingon Honor Guard 3/5
Star Wars: Jedi Knight: Mysteries of the Sith 3/5
Hexen 2: Portal of Praevus 3/5
Forsaken 4/5
Unreal 3.5/5
NAM 2/5
Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six 3/5
SHOGO: Mobile Armor Division 3/5
Delta Force 2.5/5
LSD Dream Emulator Unrated (but it was good)
Trespasser 3/5
Montezuma's Return! 3/5
SiN 2/5
Half-Life 5/5
Blood 2: The Chosen 1.5/5
Carnivores (mini-review)
Thief: The Dark Project 4/5
South Park 1/5

1999
WWII GI 3/5
Redline (mini-review)
Requiem: Avenging Angel 3/5
Alien vs Predator 3/5
Descent 3 3.5/5
Medal of Honor 3/5
Kingpin: Life of Crime 3.5/5
Half-Life: Opposing Force 3/5
System Shock 2 3.5/5
The Wheel of Time 3.5/5
Unreal Tournament 5/5
SWAT 3 4/5
Rainbow Six: Rogue Spear and Delta Force 2 (mini-reviews)
Quake 3 Arena 4/5
Mortyr 1.5/5

Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1134 on: April 18, 2021, 01:44:34 PM »
Is Kingpin the one where baddies say "Fuck you, motherfucker" and wobble like jelly when you shoot them? I think I played the demo for that at a mate's house.

Lemming

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Re: FPS NIGHTMARES
« Reply #1135 on: April 18, 2021, 06:21:32 PM »
Is Kingpin the one where baddies say "Fuck you, motherfucker" and wobble like jelly when you shoot them? I think I played the demo for that at a mate's house.

Yes! And has excellent dialogue like this:

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