It’s a curious direction that Quake 4 has taken this time around, with the heavy emphasis on single-player, apparently at the development cost of multiplayer, previously its very selling point. And while the SP production values are certainly expensive-looking and sounding, the actual combat mechanics feel a step behind the evolution of the genre, and not in an intentionally retro way.
Despite its shortcomings, Quake 4 is a genuinely fun game. It just won’t keep you entertained for as long as you expect. It’s also in the midst of some stiff competition, notably FEAR and Call of Duty 2 (and even Day of Defeat: Source, for that matter). There’s a lot of shiny wrapping, but the gift inside is disappointingly small. Score: 8.2.
Published in: Gaming on 2005-10-19