The absence of a proper single-player campaign, if not a story, in Star Wars: Battlefront was making me nostalgic. After all, the Star Wars shooter games had great single-player levels — and arguably decent stories, too.
So I decided to return to something that was even more classic than the Star Wars games — and had a single-player campaign that was just as much fun to run through.
I was wavering on a while whether to run with the original Quake, Quake 2 or go through Quake 4‘s campaign, but I decided to pick the second in the series. It gets left by the wayside a little, which is a tad unfair: it’s a good game for duelling, it’s perhaps the most visually vibrant of the series and the campaign is more enjoyable and has plenty of shortcuts if you want to bunnyhop around.
I didn’t make much use of those in this playthrough, but that allowed me to take more time answering questions from TAYbies.
I want to be clear here: when I say Quake 2 was underrated, I think it’s a bit underrated when people today look back on the games of that era. Quake 2 got a ton of plaudits in 1997, although it quickly faded away after Unreal Tournament and Quake 3: Arena dropped two years later. And there were a ton of really, really good single-player FPS campaigns in the years after – Soldier of Fortune, the Project IGI games, Halo, and the biggest one of all, Deus Ex.
I think Quake 2 still holds up. It’s a ton of fun and the rise of retro-centric shooters like Project Warlock, DUSK, AMID EVIL and Ion Fury are a reminder of how much fun those intricate single-player shooters could be. And thanks to the tireless work of modders and fan-made plugins and workarounds, Quake 2‘s graphics – even without going the ray-traced route, which is brutal to your frame rate even with an RTX 2080 Ti – still have a certain charm today.
This story has been updated since it was originally published.