This is a transcription of the Quake manual. Thanks to Kell (who made it look a lot better than the mess you see below). You can also download the manual as PDF. The Steam version does not include it so this is considered community service.

TODO: Remove the background color from the images and make them fit in well.




You get the phone call at 4 a.m. By 5:30 you're in the secret installation.

The commander explains tersely, "It's about the Slipgate device. Once we perfect these, we'll be able to use them to transport people and cargo from one place to another instantly.

"An enemy, codenamed Quake, is using his own slipgates to insert death squads inside our bases to kill, steal and kidnap…

"The hell of it is we have no idea where he's from. Our top scientists think Quake's not from earth, but another dimension. They say Quake's preparing to unleash his real army, whatever that is.

"You're our best man. This is Operation Counterstrike and you're in charge. Find Quake, and stop him…or it… You have full autonomy to requisition anything you need. If the eggheads are right, all our lives are expendable…"

Prelude to Destruction:

While scouting the neighbourhood, you hear shots back at the base. Damn, that Quake bastard works fast! He heard about Operation Counterstrike, and hit first. Racing back, you see the place is overrun. You are almost certainly the only survivor. Operation Counterstrike is over. Except for you.

You know that the heart of the installation holds a slipgate. Since Quake's killers came through, it is still set to his dimension. You can use it to get loose in his hometown. Maybe you can get to the asshole personally. You pump a round into your shotgun, and get moving.


Goal of the Game

Quake has two basic goals. First, stay alive. Second, get out of the place you're in.

The first level of each episode ends in a slipgate - these signify that you've entered another dimension. When you complete an entire dimension ( this takes five to eight levels ), you encounter another slipgate, which returns you to the start.


The start area has three short hallways. The one you go down selects the Skill you wish to play at.

Easy: This is meant for little kids and grandmas.

Medium: Most people should start Quake at Medium skill.

Hard: Here at id, we play Hard skill, and we think you should too, once you're ready.

(Nightmare): This is so bad that the entry is hidden, so people won't wander in by accident. If you find it, don't say we didn't warn you.


After the Skill halls, you're in a room with four exits. Each exit leads to a different military complex, at the end of which is a slipgate leading to a new dimension ( i.e. episode ). If you have not registered, the first episode, Dimension of the Doomed, is the only place you can go. After registration, all four episodes are available.

The other three episodes, in order from second to fourth, are Realm of Black Magic, Netherworld, and The Elder World.

TIP: From episode 1 to episode 4, the dimensions become progressively more difficult. We suggest you play the episodes in sequence to get the maximum fun out of Quake.

Getting About

Walk: Use the arrow keys or the mouse. To walk steadily forward, hold down the Forward key ( up arrow or center mouse button ). Turn left or right with the left or right arrow key, or by sliding your mouse in the desired direction.

Run: Hold down the shift key to increase your speed.

Jumping: Tap the space bar or the Enter key to jump. You jump further if you're moving forward at the time, and you jump higher if you're moving up a slope at the time. You'll be surprised at the spots you can reach in a jump. You can even avoid some attacks this way.

Swimming: When underwater, aim yourself in the direction you wish to go, and press the forward key to go in that direction. You have full three-dimensional freedom. Unfortunately, as in real life, you may lose your bearings while underwater. Use jump ( the sapce bar or Enter key ) to kick straight up towards the surface.

Once on the surface, tread water by holding down jump. To get out of the drink, swim towards the shore. Once there, use jump to clamber up. If you're down a well or you can't get a grip, you may not be able to climb out. There is always another way out, but you may have to submerge to find it.

Shooting: Tap the Ctrl key or the left mousebutton to fire. Hold shoot down to keep firing.

Use: Quake has no "use" function. To push a button or open a door, walk up to it or, in some cases, shoot it. To ride a platform, step onto it. If a door won't open or a platform won't lower, you may need to do something special to activate it.

Picking up stuff: To pick up items, weapons and power-ups, walk over them. If you can't pick up something, it means you already have the maximum possible. If it is armor, it means the stuff you're trying to get is worse than what you now have.

Finding Things

Buttons and Floorplates: Buttons activate with a touch, and floorplates must be stepped on. If you see a distinctive-looking button in a spot you cannot reach, it's probably a shootable button - fire at it.

Doors: Most doors open at your approach. If one doesn't, seek a button, floorplate, or key.

Secret Doors: Some doors are camouflaged. Almost all secret doors open when they are shot or hit with an axe. The rest are opened by hidden pressure plates or buttons.

Platforms: Most platforms only go up and down, while some follow tracks around rooms or levels. Normally, when you step onto a platform, it rises to its full height, and lowers when you step off. Some platforms drop when you step onto them, and some don't work until you activate them via a button or pressure plate.

Pressure Plates & Motion Detectors: Invisible or visible sensors which can open doors, unleash traps, warn monsters, etc.

Uncovering Secrets: Secrets are hidden lots of ways. You might need to shoot a button, kill a monster, walk through a secret motion detector, etc.

The Secret of Secrets: All secrets in Quake are indicated by clues. Don't waste your time hacking at every wall. It's much more productive ( and fun ) to use your brain and your eyes. Look up. An angled texture, a light shining under a wall, a strange sound…anything…might be the clue. Something prominent in a room might be decoration…or it might be the clue.

TIP: Bouncing a grenade off a shootable button or secret door won't open it, but if the grenade's explosion goes off nearby, this may well activate such secrets.


Keyboard Commands

Press F1 ( the Help key ) or select the Help option from the Main Menu to get a list of keyboard commands. In addition, MANUAL.TXT contains a full list.

TIP: Help lists the default keys; if you've customized your configuration, Help won't be totally accurate anymore.

The Main Menu

Tap the Escape key to pop up the Main Menu. While you are in the menu, the game is paused. The Main Menu is pretty much self-explanatory, but if you have questions, README.TXT explains all.

TIP: Quake saves your current key configuration when you quit, so that next time you play, you have the same configuration.


Tap the ~ key to bring down the console. As with the Main Menu, when the console is down, a single player game is paused. A wide variety of esoteric commands can be entered at the console. If your keyboard has no ฌ, the Options submenu from the Main Menu has a "Go To Console" selection. The README.TXT file contains advanced Console commands.

Command Line

For special command line parameters, see README.TXT.

Cheat Codes

Id software, as in our previous games, has removed all cheat codes from Quake.


The Screen

The large top part of the screen is the view area, in which you see monsters and architecture. Immediately below is the Inventory Bar. Below that is the Status Bar. You can enlarge the viewing area ( tap the + key ), so much that it engulfs first the Inventory Bar and then the Status Bar. The - key shrinks the view area.

Inventory Bar: Lists ammo, weapons, deathmatch scores, and power-ups.

The active weapon is lit up. Each weapon has a number by it - type the appropriate number key to switch to that weapon. In deathmatch, the top four scores are displayed, along with the color(s) of those players.

Status Bar: A vital part of the screen. When your armour, hit points, or ammo get low, the number turns red. That's a hint, pal.

While in multiplayer Mode, pressing TAB shows the normal stuff you would see in Single Player Mode, but over the game screen the entire Rankings List will be displayed ( just like when you die in Deathmatch Mode ).

Score Bar: Hold down the Tab key to replace the Status Bar with the Score Bar. This lists the proportion of monsters you've killed, secrets you've found, and time you've spent, along with the level name.


Quake talks to you from time to time. Some messages appear at the top of the screen. These are non-critical, and tell you that you've picked up an object, or you've died in an interesting fashion. Ignore these messages if you like.

Certain messages appear inconveniently right in the middle of your view. These are always important, and you do not want to ignore them!

Ending a Level

Once you finish a level, you'll find a slipgate or a distinctive archway leading to the next level. Pass through to emerge onto a new level.

You start the new level with the same hit points, armor, weapons, and ammo you had at the end of the previous one. Except that if you have over 100 hit points ( due to the megahealth power-up ), you start the new level at 100. If a power-up was active at the end of the previous level, sadly, it is no longer in effect. Make the best of it.

Ending a Dimension

Once you've finished all the levels in a particualr dimension, you return to the starting hall. New dimensions are started from sratch - you, your shotgun, and axe.



You are blessed with eight different Means o' Mass Destruction. Each has its place in a balanced diet.

Axe: The last resort. Face it - going toe-to-toe with the uglies in Quake demonstrates all the good sense of a man parachuting into an alligator farm.
Double-barrelled Shotgun: A worthy weapon with three minor drawbacks: first, it uses up 2 shells per blast; second, it's slow; third, its shot pattern is very loose at long range. But in general, once you find this puppy, the other shotgun starts rusting from disuse.
Nailgun: A two-barrel dingus that prickles bad guys with armor-piercing darts, technically termed "nails".
Perforator: The great equalizer. Four cyclic barrels that hose out spikes like crazy. Pro: foes drop like flies. Con: eats ammo like popcorn.
Grenade Launcher: Thumps neat exploding bombs into the air. You can even bounce a grenade off the wall or floor. When a grenade hits someone, it explodes. If it misses, the bomb sits on the floor for a moment, then explodes. Even though I sometimes bounce grenades into myself, this gun's still my favorite.
Rocket Launcher: For when a grenade positively, absolutely, has to be there on time.
Thunderbolt: Try it. You'll like it. Use the same technique as watering your rosebush.

Switching Between Weapons: If you are firing a weapon and run out of ammo, Quake automatically switches you to another weapon. It will never switch to the grenade launcher or rocket launcher, however, for reasons that ought to be obvious. So if you're firing away happily and suddenly switch to the axe, it doesn't mean you're out of all ammo - you probably still have grenades. But Quake requires you to switch to these dangerous explosives on your own.

TIP: If you shoot the thunderbolt underwater, it discharges all its cells in every direction in a single gigantic KA-ZAP! With you at the center. Don't try this at home.


The eight weapons use four types of ammo. Each ammo type comes in two flavours - small and large. The large boxes carry twice as much as the small.

Shells: For shotguns and double-barrelled shotguns. A small box holds 20.
Nails: For nailguns and perforators. A small box holds 25.
Grenades: For grenade launchers and rocket launchers. A small crate holds 5.
Cells: For Mr. Thunderbolt. A small battery has 6 charges, lasting a little over a second.


All power-ups except armor burn out after a while, so smoke 'em while you got 'em.

Armor: Comes in three flavors; green, yellow, and red, from weakest to most powerful.
Megahealth: Adds 100 hit points on to whatever you had. The extra points start burning off after a while.
Biosuit: Lets you breathe underwater and swim through slime without harm. Does not protect against lava.
Ring Of Shadows: Turns you almost totally invisible. Only your eyes can be seen. Monsters won't detect your presence unless you do something stupid.
Pentagram Of Protection: Renders you invulnerable.
Quad Damage: Magnum upgrade! You now deliver four times the pain!

TIP: When quad damage is activated, use the grenade or rocket launcher with care - their bursts are four times as deadly to you, as well as your enemies.

Bad Guys

Quake critters are extremely tough, but you have the firepower to vent your grievances on them anyway. Good hunting.

Rottweiler: Bad, bad doggie! Play dead! - blam! blam! - yipe! Good dog!
Grunt: Goons with probes inserted into their pleasure centers; wired up so when they kill someone, they get paroxysms of ecstasy. In essence, customized serial killers. Easy to kill, and they tote shotgun shells. It's like a little Christmas each time you kill one!
Enforcer: Grunt, Mark Two. Grunts who are surlier and beefier than the rest get outfitted in combat armor and built-in blasters.
Knight: Canned meat. Open 'er up and see if it's still fresh.
Death Knight: This particular canned meat tends to open you up instead.
Rotfish: Disgusting little critters who dish it out, but can't take it.
Zombie: Thou canst not kill that which doth not live. But you can blast it into chunky kibbles.
Scrag: Floats like a butterfly, stings like a bee. Ugly as hell. They're not real tough, but like to bushwhack you.
Ogre: What's worse than a cannibal monster eight feet tall? One with a chainsaw. And a sackful of grenades.
Spawn: A merrily bouncing blob as dangerous to kill as to ignore. Blech.
Fiend: In essence, organic buzzsaws, rife with pummeling power!
Vore: A spideresque hybrid horror. Keep your eye on the firepod he hurls.
Shambler: Even other monsters fear him, so expect a clobbering. He shrugs off explosions. Good luck.

TIP: Some weapons are better vs. particular monsters than others. If a new monster seems real tough, switch weapons.

Environmental Hazards and Effects

Explosions: Radioactive containers are in some military bases. Shooting these things unleashes a big boom, so be careful - you may not want to stand too close in a firefight.

Your own grenades and rockets cause explosions too, of course - the blast can hurt you if you're too close.

Water: Safe enough unless you stay under so long you start to drown. Come up for air periodically to prevent this.

Slime: Hurts you instantly and keeps on hurting. Stay out of slime unless you have a very good reason to take a dip.

Lava: If you're quick and the lava's shallow, you might escape before you're burnt to a crisp, but don't bet on it.

Traps: Quake has many different traps. Don't be paranoid, because traps aren't really very common, but be aware of their existence. Traps can't be classified because they come in many varieties - monsters in ambush, spike shooters, crushing walls, trapdoors, etc.

Teleporters: These are distinctive in appearance and emit a unique sound. When you step into a teleporter, you're instantly transported to another teleporter, or atop a teleport pad. If you teleport directly right atop somebody else, he or she is killed instantly.

TIP: Monsters are smart enough not to activate their own traps, but if you activate the traps, monsters can get caught by them.


Quake can be even more fun when you're playing with friends than when you're playing by yourself.

When you are using the console or Main Menu in Multiplayer, the game does not pause. Irresponsible players and monsters can freely shoot you, and your only recourse is blood-thirsty vengeance.

The Talk function is useful here. When you talk, the message appears at the top of all players' screens, preceded by the speaker's name.

To set up, run, or join a multiplayer game, use the Main Menu Multiplayer option. README.TXT contains details that may be useful if your network or modem need special configurations.


In a co-op game, you and your friends work together to finish the level. When one person exits, everyone else exits too, wherever they might be. If you are killed in co-op, you reappear at the start area, and have to catch up to your buddies. Use Talk to find out where they are. See the Multiplayer options on the Main Menu for more info.


In a deathmatch, play is totally cutthroat. No monsters exist, and when you are killed, you reappear in a random spot. After you pick up an item, it respawns ( i.e. pops back into existence ) after a while. ( Some items take longer to respawn than others. ) Every time you kill someone, you get a Frag. The person with the most Frags wins, so wreak slaughter amongst your pals!

If you kill yourself, whether intentionally or by accident, you lose a Frag. This includes drowning, getting crushed, and so forth. See the Multiplayer options on the Main Menu for more info.

Team Games

Team play is a cool combination of co-op and deathmatch. Each team picks a "uniform" and everyone on that team changes their color to the team color. The team with the most Frags wins. See MANUAL.TXT or the Main Menu for details.

TIP: If you have the Team Color Rules set to No Friendly Fire, your weapons won't hurt other players wearing the same color pants as you. ( You can still have differently-colored shirts. ) Your shots still wear away their armor, and your own grenades and rocket explosions still hurt you, but not them.


I'm stuck. How do I get through the level?

Take a stroll around and look for a place you haven't been yet. Sometimes you have to kill a particular monster in order to progress, so exterminate them all!

How can I find all the secrets?

Don't worry about it. You never have to find a secret to finish a level. Also, some secrets are intentionally hard to find.

I've cleared out the whole level, but my monster kill score isn't 100%. Where are they hiding?

Some monsters hide inside secrets, or are released by them. You won't be able to kill those monsters until you find their secrets. Also, some monsters might lurk underwater. Go fishing.

Don't you worry that Quake teaches people that all problems can be solved by the misuse of deadly force?


Did I really see two monsters fighting each other?

Probably. Some monsters hate one another almost as much as they hate you. You can use this to your advantage ( exercise left up to the reader ).

How do I prevent motion sickness when watching Quake?

If you're one of the unlucky sufferers from motion sickness in Quake, we're sorry to say the answer seems to differ from person to person. Try sitting closer to the screen, or further away. Dim the lights in your room, or turn them up high. Adjust screen brightness up or down. Take a break from Quake and rest your eyes every hour or so. One or more of these tricks, or a combination, ought to work.

Are you guys Satan-worshippers?