There are two things I love in this world: Peanut Butter+Marmite (they become one thing) and First-Person shooters. I am also incredibly fond of the promise that this generation of VR gaming brings (i.e. presence). ID’s Doom was obviously the first game to really blow my mind, but Quake 2 was the first game where me and my friends would blow each other’s brains out. Over and over and over and over again. Watching my mates run up a curving staircase and trying to time my rocket to catch them just before they got to their own rocket-launcher at the top was 3D gaming’s equivalent of a skeet shoot (clay pigeons to us yokels). It was hours of fun and we’d spend a whole weekend ordering pizza and drinking way too much beer. LAN-party heaven, courtesy of Quake 2.
Now, all of that fun is available in VR, thanks to Quake2VR, which is the product of several fan-based works; Knightmare Quake 2 and RiftQuake being chiefly among them. It features a higher-resolution UI, which floats in-front of you (rather than being up-close and personal like so many other game ports). You’ll need the original Quake 2 game to serve the base PAK files, but other than that it’s a free and relatively simple mod.
As well as being a VR experience, the mods also include a higher-resolution texture pack and new graphical enhancements, so your trip down memory lane shouldn’t be filled with internal commentary like ‘this looked awesome when I was a teenager’ etc. It should go without saying, but it does also allow network gaming (on the KMQuake2 servers). I am definitely putting this on the list for my next LAN party.