The next Quake title may go back to its space/fantasy-themed, Cthulhu-inspired roots.
id Software's John Carmack recently confirmed that the studio currently isn't working on another Quake title. But he also admitted to Eurogamer in an interview that there are "strong factions" within the studio that want to create another Quake title, one that goes back to the gritty, Lovecraftian roots that started it all.
"We went from the Quake 2 and the Quake 4 Strogg universe," he said. "We are at least tossing around the possibilities of going back to the bizarre, mixed up Cthulhu-ish Quake 1 world and rebooting that direction. We think that would be a more interesting direction than doing more Strogg stuff after Quake 4. We certainly have strong factions internally that want to go do this. But we could do something pretty grand like that, that still tweaks the memory right in all of those ways, but is actually cohesive and plays with all of the strengths of the level we're at right now."
Although DOOM put the FPS genre on the map and is still considered as the "grandaddy" FPS today, Quake seemingly transformed PC gaming by popularizing the use of polygons and supporting the emerging GPU sector to create a more realistic, deep virtual space. The game also pioneered online gaming and invited users to be creative, leading to many popular multiplayer modes still in use today like Capture the Flag and Rocket Arena.
Overall the Quake franchise feels somewhat fragmented, with the first installment featuring a palate of browns and creatures inspired by H.P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu Mythos. Quake 2 actually set out to be a completely new IP, but the studio wasn't able to acquire the rights to the desired title, so the team decided to use the project's nickname, Quake 2, instead. The third installment, Quake III Arena, was multiplayer only and featured the settings of both worlds. The lackluster Quake 4, developed by Raven Software, was a direct sequel to Quake 2.
But the mere mention of the original title brings innovation to mind, and still serves up fond memories even after all these years. "The way I think about some of those things, and I actually get into arguments with my wife about this, who loved the original Quake game, I looked at the original Quake as this random thing, because we really didn't have our act together very well," he said, looking back on the original title and what it brought to the gaming industry. "But because it was so seminal about the 3D world and the internet gaming, it's imprinted on so many people. It made such an impact in so many ways. Memory cuts us a lot of slack."
"People shouldn't worry that we're ever going to orphan or abandon Quake," id Software CEO Todd Hollenshead added. "We are huge fans of the game internally."
Seriously, bring on the Shamblers, the Scrags and all those bizarre, blood-thirsty ghouls we came to love back in 1996. Just don't take 14 years to bring them back. Please.