Post Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:20 am

Quake Live

Another paper I wrote for my video game class! :D Hope you like it!

Quake Live is an online-based multiplayer first-person shooter for the PC. To play it, you need a special plug-in for your web browser. The game is composed of many, many online matches and even after the matches are over, you can continue to interact with the game and other players through the game’s community-based clans and friend’s list. To start your own matches with your clan or friends, it costs money, so I did not get to explore that section of the game.
The environment of this game is a collection of various stages that are designed to either be maze-like maps, two-sided areas, or other shapes depending on their use in their appropriate game modes. For the ‘Capture the Flag’ mode, there is usually two central stations that each team starts and is linked directly to the next station. The other modes add complexity to the maps in order to add places for strategies to be created and learned. Because of the lack of story-line or established setting within the game, the themes of each level are either space-themed and futuristic, or grudgy and dark medieval.
The levels can be separated into two main groups of levels: One group of levels of floating platforms where nearly anyone is within sight from any other position on the map, and the other of the insides of a building or a map with a physical ground and walls. Many of the platform-based levels include boosters and jumpers to make navigating and getting from place to place easier. The other group of levels uses these, but not nearly as often. However, all levels are littered with weapons and ammunition, and health. Most levels also feature a secret location or a hard-to-reach location that gives and advantage while shooting other players.
This game has absolutely no story-line except that you are put into an area and you either kill the others or you grab a flag and run. In the other Quake games, there is, but for Quake Live, there is no story. As for the emotional aspect of this game, the details and gameplay make the user think and react fast and try to evoke a sense of urgency while playing. Alongside that, the theme and surroundings of each level try to portray the fighting and killing as brutal as possible. It is plausible that the developers and designers were trying to set this game at a level above other fighting games that are acceptable or more acceptable to parents. Portraying bodies exploding into hundreds of chunks of meat is not exactly what most parents would allow their children to play whenever Quake was big in the past and because of that, the game was marketed towards older teens and young adults. The developers know that those who know the Quake franchise and remember it from this era and hopefully will return to play Quake Live. The designers are trying to keep younger kids from playing this game.
Missing from this game are many major elements that have to do with the story-line, but others are still around. One big one is the seemingly randomly laid ammunition, guns, and power-ups. It seems that the more adventurous one is, and the more into the level the player explores, the better and better weapons and power-ups that player will find. It is a reward for not only being curious, but also for surviving longer, because many, many other players will be trying to reach for the same items, too. Obviously, the designers included this into the game so that the players would feel like every time they spawned that their chance of living would be different than the previous. It adds replay value to the game. Also, it takes away the idea that the player is purposely roaming around the map. This is the determining factor whenever a player reaches a fork in the road when searching for another player in a game such as Quake Live.
Weapons sometimes do not seem to make much different during the game unless you are going from a basic weapon to one of the best weapons. Items lay around, too. Sometimes they give you more health or more defenses, but they rarely make a difference during the gameplay, too. It obviously can change the odds of dying or surviving, but whenever you are a novice during the game, an expert will kill you before you have enough time to take these other items or power-ups into your advantage.
I do not believe that there is any greater point to this game besides running around and evoking needless violence. I believe that the designers of this game just wanted to have people have a fun experience so that they could sell their ‘pro’ grade package.