Quake Live is gunning for a bigger audience

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Quake Live, id Software’s free-to-play version of Quake III: Arena that’s focused on the competitive scene, is being changed to attract a larger, less hardcore audience. Specifically, the developers want it to appeal to the average Steam user. Bethesda announced at QuakeCon in July that Quake Live would be coming to Steam sometime later this year, but had no information about whether the game would receive an update with the Steam version. Yesterday, producer Adam Pyle revealed that there will be some significant changes. The most controversial additions are an “auto-hop” mechanic, a visible timer will be added to item respawns, and players will be able to choose a secondary weapon before they begin a match.

Quake is a masterful game of skill, often compared to Chess by its veteran players. However, with that depth has come a challenge to welcome and capture new players long enough for them to discover the joy to be found in what many consider the finest Deathmatch game ever made.

A “classic” mode will be available for old-school Quakemasters that scoff at making things easy, although some elements of the update will be global and cannot be disabled.