Presenting my OGAM for April 2013. QuakeCraft!


This one is a bit of a mash-up. I wanted to see if Minecraft-like gameplay could have been prototyped back in the 1996 era Quake tech. The short answer is: Absolutely!



Poorly Written Details

Starting with vanilla Quake1 and QuakeC I was able to create a new entity called func_minecraft_block that behaves like Minecraft’s blocks in that they take damage, provide feedback when hit (colored particles in Quake1 vs texture damage in MC), and when “killed” drop themselves for pickup into the player inventory. While this worked beautifully, a limitation arose pretty quickly with the vanilla Quake1 entity limit. I could only place a very small number of blocks before running out entities. To get over this hump, I picked the Darkplaces Quake1 sourceport since they had changelogs relating to cranking up the number of edicts/ents.

Once the level was up and running in Darkplaces, it took off. As soon as I could build a Minecraft’ish looking level using Trenchbroom the core proof of concept in my eyes was essentially complete. It’s incredibly fun to run around with the Quake1 axe and chop down some Minecraft blocks. Turning on quad-damage and drilling through a bunch of blocks with the lightning gun is also very fun.

I made several short attempts to go deeper and add block placement, generative terrain, proper inventory, Minecraft’ish “weapons”, and menus. While the weapons are totally possible using just QuakeC, anything beyond a hacky text menu for inventory and menus would require engine modifications. Block placement and generative terrain could definitely be done using QuakeC as well, but without engine mods the blocks would look terrible since Quake1 dynamic b-models either have pre-baked lightmaps or are fullbright.

To take it to the next level and turn Quake1 into Minecraft. Other limitations would need to be overcome. The biggies would be world size, day/night cycles, lightmapping, and 1996 PC performance issues. Beyond that, I think everything else would be possible in Quake1.

Either way, I think this experiment was a success. With Quake1 tech back in 1996 it would have been totally possible to have modified the engine to build a game that would have felt very similar to Minecraft with just about every core features that makes Minecraft what it is. Fun fun.


Here are the various bits and pieces you’ll need to play the QuakeCraft level!

  • Quake1 pak files. Get Quake1 from steam and locate the pak files in \steamapps\common\Quake\Id1\
  • A modern Quake1 source port. I only tested this with Darkplaces but I don’t see any reason why it wouldn’t work in another sourceport.
  • Unzip this file into your Quake1 (source port) folder and run Quakecraft.bat
  • Sources

    The zip file for Quakecraft contains a few items lifted from various sources. Nobody sue me please! Of you want me to remove anything from this zip just drop me an email or tweet me @tmustaine. These files include sounds from Minecraft and Textures from the totally badass Minecraft skin pack Sphax PureBDCraft.

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *