Top positive review
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QUAKE IS SUPERB
on 15 December 2000
Quake 3 Arena is quite possibly the greatest multiplayer Dreamcast game so far. It is a PC port but is so much better on Dreamcast it is unbelievable! The graphics are crystal clear and the frame rate is fantastic even in multiplayer games. The single player is great fun but is easy to complete, but multiplayer gaming is far better and is comparable to that of Golden Eye's in my view.
Right from the opening start up FMV you get a real sense that Quake 3 will be more than your average shoot 'em up - you will not be disappointed I can assure you. The sound is superb and there is a real sense of atmosphere when you play the game: each and every character, level and weapon has been meticulously designed making the game even more amazing. You may well have heard that Quake 3 Arena offers a full online experience to compliment the offline game modes - it does, and it is stunning.
There are so many characters to choose from, each having a selection of 3 colours. There are robots, aliens, skeletons, a giant eyeball, as well as many 'regular' people. The online play is absolutely brilliant. Firstly you should enter your player details in the player profile before going online. You can change your name, character and other options here. When you connect you must obviously ensure that the phone line is connected to your Dreamcast and then select the online option from the game main menu. Connecting will take around 30 seconds but you will then be greeted with a message displaying the number of online games available, no. Scanning and number found (I think there are about 901 in total!). You can either wait for the lot to download or just press stop and join a game that has already got people in it (you'll see that every game has an out of 4players sign).
All the modes from the multi player game are included online so you can play capture the Flag (CTF), Death Match (Death) or team battle mode. I don't think the tournament option is included though. When you join a game you will have 15 seconds to walk around before the battle commences. In this time it is wise to chat to a fellow team member, and discuss strategies etc. In order to do this you can use your control pad by pressing start and selecting a pre-set message, or alternatively, and preferably, using a keyboard press '`' (the key next to the number '1') and you will be able to type in what you like! I have played in many death matches (this is an all against all!), but haven't done that well losing to 'BLAINE' many a time! However, I much prefer the superb Capture the flag mode as you can work in a team and discuss tactics and chat in general. I managed to rake up a score of 32 against 5/4/6 which was rather pleasing considering the other 3 players ganged up on me! I've played alongside 'Dan D Man', which was a fantastic battle - of course, we won!
I simply could not believe the quality of the online gaming due to the fact that there is less slow down than a MACLAREN F1's accelerating! It's amazing! The reviews that I have read stated that you would need to get used to the slight online lag - what online lag? The only time that the game even hinted at slowing down was when I fired around 18 Rockets from my Rocket Launcher! I really recommend that you get yourself this superb game, as it will provide one of the most exhilarating times of your life.
Q3A is just so realistic without taking itself too seriously. By this I mean that the game is violent, really violent and you can cause blood to spill from your opponents dead body (this is quite funny actually) but it doesn't seem like a violent game - its really light hearted fun, and any parent objecting to their son or daughter getting Quake should really test out the game first to realise that it isn't that bad at all. You can adjust the gravity levels, your handicap level and many more.
Quake 3 is simply a must have title and will last you longer than anything out there. Fantastic! Available to buy from many retailers, but the best deal I have found is at amazon.co.uk where you can get Quake 3, the keyboard AND the mouse fo.. instead of the RRP of £.... You do not have to purchase a mouse, but I recommend getting a keyboard, as your Internet surfing will also speed up. The deal mentioned is very good though as you'll effectively get the mouse for free anyway, and it will be compatible with the forthcoming Dream Arena version 2.0 released in early 2001. I am currently using the control pad for offline games as well as online. Experienced Quakers will tell you that the mouse and keyboard provides better control, but at present the current pad is fine. The controls do take a few games to get used to, but become second nature: the four buttons 'X, Y, A and B' are used to move forward, back, left and right with the right trigger acting as a fire button, the left trigger as a jump, the D-Pad as the weapon select and the analogue pad is used to look around.
A truly triple 'A' title that should win even more non-DC owners to the format. This is one of the most enjoyable games that I have ever played in my life and has won its way permanently into my Dreamcast. Even with top titles like Shenmue, MSR and JSR around I really do believe that Quake 3 Arena is the must have this Christmas. You'd be foolish to miss out on such an enthralling game. 10/10