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Screenshot of ne_ruins
Title:The Altar of Storms (3b8327def936f283255c8087a5c77d06)
Filesize:47680 Kilobytes
Release date:22.06.2011
Additional Links: SP Map Corner
Type:Partial conversion
BSP: ✔ • PAK: ✔ • PROGS.DAT: ✔ • Custom Models/Sounds: ✔

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The Altar of Storms

Large ancient temple ruins hidden deep beneath a snowy mountain valley. The theme of the map is inspired by the Ayleid ruins from TES4: Oblivion. The map has all new textures, many modified or new monsters from Hexen 2 including a fearsome boss demon, and a custom quad-barrel shotgun.

Tags: large, temple, textures, monsters, snow, boss, ayleid, weapons, hexen 2, cold, epic, mustplay, episode, unique

Editor's Rating: Excellent
User Rating:
4.7/5 with 122 ratings
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Nahuel 28 June 2011, 3:26
Dani 28 June 2011, 23:43
One of the best I've ever seen.. Congratulations!
d3l0r 29 June 2011, 0:59 last some visual variatons from obnoxious usual quake theme!
NightFright 1 July 2011, 17:08
Amazing architecture and gameplay! If you don't play this - why have you played Quake before?
Denizen T 26 July 2011, 23:00
Lord of the Undead 6 August 2011, 7:05
Incredible. Several brilliant ideas that should be more frequently incorporated. The quad shotgun was nice, but I never really warmed up to it that much. The zombies were actually really really scary the first two or three times, and if well used, could easily continue to scare me. Why no one used the zombies like that before is beyond me. All of the new monsters were a lot of fun to fight and the architecture was phenomenal. I couldn't get it to work on the Quake Injector, you'll have to do this one manually. It's well worth it.
Lord Graga 29 December 2011, 19:37
I LOVED it. First Quake SP map I play in years, and it just hit the spot. I absolutely loved the new monsters and the way they played together, and the bossfights were quite good, even though I had to use some saves for the final boss.

The visuals were amazing, the zombies kicked ass, and the quad shotgun was sweet. Approved.
El Hombre 4 January 2012, 1:45
Great and innovative map, and the zombies are brilliant. However, best have time on your hands because you might not be able to save. The autosave thing does not work in Quakespasm( at least for me ), and saving proper does not either. This means you must play all the way through or lose where you were. And don't die, either.

Because of the save bugs I had to give an otherwise excellent map 2 hearts. :-(
El Hombre 4 January 2012, 3:56
Perhaps an engine issue, but I removed the pak file and all, re-extracted and started over. Works great now. Voted to 5 stars despite issues as it is such an outstanding map ( got to the rune vault. most excellent ).

Look forward to the rest!
Daz 6 February 2012, 7:36
Map playthrough -
dehlor 4 April 2012, 14:58
Haven't played it yet..
but from what I've seen in YouTube video this is going to be a MASTERPIECE !

Snowy outdoor setting reminds me of Daikatana 2nd chapter (no pun intended :)..)

This is great stuf'
Weavaloid 17 July 2012, 17:28
Awesome made mod, love the fact you added Hexen 2 enemies in it!

Fr3n Registered 19 November 2012, 3:51
Sadly my comp crashes right after the scary-assed lift that raises you to the snowy outside area, but everything before that is E P I C
Spirit Registered 19 November 2012, 17:21
Make sure you use a good engine, Quakespasm works.
Fr3n Registered 21 November 2012, 7:58
Quakespasm crashes even faster than Fitzquake. It's the computer I'm using, not the engine.
Spirit Registered 21 November 2012, 18:31
Make sure you use a good computer!

What kind of PC (poop computer) is that?
Fr3n Registered 22 November 2012, 15:41
P4 3.20 :P
Marquaker Guest 1 February 2013, 12:32
Very Nice Maps, awesome atmosphere! Some textures, map structures, and sounds is familiar with Elder Scrolls Oblivion, but this is a good thing! :)
Lane Powell Registered 14 August 2013, 13:18

Despite some glitches, this gets a strong 5. Stunningly beautiful environments and architecture (reminds me strongly of Skyrim graphics, but I like this better), and one of the best boss fights I've played in any game.

Icantthinkofanickname Registered 4 December 2013, 0:44

Wow. Just astounding. How had I not noticed this map set before? This sets new standards with its incredible scale, superb lighting, beautiful textures, brilliant new and modified monsters, nice new weapon, subtle and sometimes not-so-subtle special effects, atmosphere, pacing, staggering attention to detail ... I … just … words fail me.

Yamato Registered 29 January 2014, 1:07

Absolutely gorgeous and epic in each and every aspect.

Tabe Guest 1 February 2014, 19:30

Marvelous! I have just started playing Quake and of the 10 or so custom maps I have played, this one takes the prize. The only thing stopping it from getting 10 out of 10 is that the enviroments are not that varied.

Tronyn Guest 2 February 2014, 11:07

you will find very few maps as amazing as this one. The whole sequence of start map, dungeon crawl, and final climax is frankly cinematic. This map also shows how ridiculously adaptable Quake is - it has diversity and potential like no other game.

NightFright Registered 16 March 2014, 10:50

Everything here is so cleverly done and looks totally amazing! A start map which you return to after completing the main level (for the end boss battle), new enemies like super-fast zombies, huge stone statues or corpse-resurrecting succubi, some new gameplay elements like urns you can smash for health and armor boni (just don't smash the wrong ones or you'll be in for a nasty surprise) and a lot more! The fights against the ice and lava golems are fantastically scripted and visually very rewarding: When the water melts after the ice golem dies or the lava rises in the catacombs after the fire golem falls were some of my many highlights in this release. The final battle is also very impressive and not too difficult if you stay close to those healing pools and don't waste your ammo. A top-notch release totally worth investing 45-60 minutes into! [For FitzQuake Mk V users: You have to use a different command to increase the amount of edicts, it's not "maxedicts" like in the included nesetup.cfg file, but "hostmaxedicts". So you need to put something like hostmaxedicts "8192" into your autoexec.cfg. Additionally, you WILL need the "-heapsize" commandline parameter. I had to go up to -heapsize 524288 to prevent crashes when trying to leave the starting map. And as a last note, my game crashed whenever a succubus tried to resurrect a corpse. The only workaround was to kill those succubi before any other enemy in that area.]

Spirit Registered 6 July 2014, 14:43

I can't believe someone rated this something else than 5 full points. Just replayed it (yay procrastination) and it is just as awesome as on the first playthrough. So much surprising and impressive "scripting", with the thawing ice, red sky, rising lava etc.

Karl_Delacroix Registered 7 October 2014, 13:53

Well, this map is just brilliant. The architecture, the battles and the atmosphere are genius, the use of custom content is nicely placed and the setup for the final battle iwas awesome. Definitely one of the best.

Baker Guest 30 April 2015, 12:23

Note: Requiem style automatic attempt to fix missing "impulse 12" fix is incompatible with this map. Give all weapons and try to use impulse 12 through each weapon will lock things up when it hits the super shotgun.

azradun Guest 29 September 2015, 18:30

That was so cool! The architecture is breathtaking, the events fantastic, the custom monsters are amongst the best I've seen. Genius use of Hexen 2 assets, plus a lot of original ones.

Azradun Registered 9 October 2015, 17:04

Probably the best custom level for Quake 1 I've ever played. The feeling of Skyrim was sublime. Monsters were perfect, events too. A masterpiece and a work of art.

warp10too Registered 4 January 2016, 2:48

Excellent architecture , amazing monsters . What a masterful piece of workmanship . Who couldn't be in awe....

warp10too Registered 4 January 2016, 2:51

I actually thought I rated this five and should be 5++.

guest Guest 19 January 2016, 3:10

Just played it for first time, was on my backlog. Loved the ending.

Bloughsburgh Registered 29 March 2016, 13:14

Shows just how far you can push Quake into anything you really want if you pour elbow grease into it! Would have loved more maps and that Quad shotgun and running zombies...oh my!

dwere Guest 12 June 2016, 22:04

This mod keeps resetting some of my settings. I think it's the sole reason why I bound executing autoexec.cfg to a key years ago.

Otherwise great.

Solomoriah Registered 13 July 2016, 16:02

I created an account just to comment on this one. It is BEAUTIFUL. And tough. I died a lot, but I died BEAUTIFULLY. Cannot recommend this one enough!

My only complaint was the constant resetting of my "Always Run" setting (I want it off, but it kept switching on). I just created a macro that would manage the situation for me and bound it to SHIFT and all was well.

dwere Registered 28 July 2016, 20:09

It looks like golem's earth pounding attack uses some dirty tricks that rely on client settings. Personally, I don't like this approach. It's intrusive and tends to break things.

cox Registered 24 August 2016, 0:52

Excelent map! Great visuals, really fun enemies (World War Z anyone? :) ). And - once more - great visuals. I was really pleased to see some new textures and new colors - not that I don't like original colors - but it was refreshing. And the ending sequence - really nice. This was first map, on which i didn't search for any secrets. I have to do this map once more on more demanding level of difficulty. But - even on standard difficulty - it was fun to fight those big red ones with 1 HP :) - lucky them i forgot how to turn god mode on! :)

All in all - great map. One o the best maps (in terms of visuals and mechanics) in q1 I have ever played. BRAVO!

bfg666 Registered 4 January 2017, 16:20

Only a 4 for me because basically, it's only the recreation of an ayleid temple from TES: Oblivion. A beautiful recreation, no doubt, but not exactly an original map. I've seen Necros more inspired. Maybe I was spoiled by all the praise this map got but I expected more. Progression is very linear and though the new 28-Days-Later type of zombie is unexpected and refreshing the first time around, it loses its novelty appeal after the 3rd or 4th attack wave. The lava spawns that freeze over time are a nice idea on paper but not that interesting gameplay-wise in an open arena since all you have to do to be safe is take some distance for a few seconds until they become icicles. These guys should be much more interesting in close quarters or a sealed-off arena, though.

oil_moon Guest 12 March 2017, 11:53

Feels like playing Painkiller on the Quake engine. Extremely well made!

Atzuras Guest 26 March 2017, 19:28

One of the most interesting single-level maps ever played. It makes you rethink the way to play a Quake map. Brillant, clever and inspired. I would like to play more maps in this fashion. The final round a bit too deadly for my taste but still great.

Ajora Registered 21 July 2017, 2:25

It's a very good map, but I don't think it's quite on the level that everyone else here is making it out to be.

unlicensedlurker Registered 20 September 2017, 16:59

Amazing the architecture might be, original it's not if it's just taken straight from Oblivion. The same can be said for the zombies; they're just L4D zombies with Quake skins and Doom 3 sounds. And the Quad Shotgun's model.

Anyway. I liked the snowy outdoor areas and the very Elder Scrolls feel of the maps, including the interiors. Didn't like the glitchy visuals, but that's what you get for stretching an old engine far beyond it's intended limits.

3.5 / 5

Greed Registered 8 November 2017, 21:44

Felt compelled to comment on the "glitchy" visuals.

This is one of the maps that glitches out on the more recent builds of DarkPlaces, because the authors of the latter had the bright idea to recalculate map portals on map load in order to "improve performance" of their real-time world mode. As the result, big, spacious maps tend to have flickering polygons all over.

Solutions are as follows:

  • Don't use DarkPlaces. It's more of a testing bed for various graphics feature than an engine to play Quake. There's a reason it's got so many console commands to turn various things off for compatibility reasons.

  • Turn off the "smart" portal culling by typing r_useportalculling 0 in the console. Or type mod_bsp_portalize 0 to prevent DarkPlaces from generating new VIS data in the first place. As a bonus, the maps will also load much faster.

As a side note, the first ogre in the map gets telefragged on spawn in DarkPlaces for some reason. I've tried playing with various settings like sv_gameplayfix_droptofloorstartsolid or sv_gameplayfix_nudgeoutofsolid, but it still doesn't work. It's possible that other enemy spawns are also affected.

Just don't use DarkPlaces. Stick to QuakeSpasm, or FTEQW if you must have bloom, HDR or what not.

dumptruck_ds Registered 30 May 2018, 16:30

Finally got a chance to play this. Amazing. A must play for anyone who loves Quake. This mod brings new environments, mechanics and monsters to the universe. Play this ASAP.

MikeTaylor Registered 4 June 2018, 22:19

I found this a ton of fun till I reached the stupidly too-hard boss fight. Even on normal skill I couldn't make any headway. In the end, I god-moded it and felt no shame. Except that it's a shame such a fine level ends so badly. Necros is one of my favourite mappers and has created some delightful maps, but I don't think this is among his best.

MikeTaylor Registered 4 June 2018, 22:43

Wow, on reading everyone else's comments it seems I am very much in the minority! Still, that ending did leave me with a sour taste so I'm sticking with my 3/5 score. But I did love the horde zombies.

RyGuy Registered 30 November 2018, 5:20

I really like the build and the textures, and the zombies were brilliant, but it felt really weird with no ambient sounds. It would be nice to hear some winds here and there, and maybe some rumbling, but the maps were completely silent, other than the music. Other than that, it was great.

Jugador Registered 16 October 2019, 20:09

Great map with amazingly coherent atmosphere. Contrary to MikeTaylor, I found the difficulty of the boss fight just right. I also experienced no graphical glitches on QuakeSpasm.

jaikawan Registered 18 November 2019, 17:57

absolute masterpiece

Dr. Toboggan Registered 20 January 2020, 10:05

Incredible. I don't get people saying "It's from Oblivion" like it's a bad thing. This map is just a blast to play in Quake.

Definitely on tier with Honey and deserves a spot among the best ever. It's equally beautiful to Honey, but I would say the gameplay is more fun than Honey's.

It sent chills down my spine multiple times, encountering the hoards and running from the Statue(?) things. Very, very thrilling (maybe creepy is a better word).

The biggest downside for me was the lack of ambiance/music. Thankfully, Iron Cthulhu Apocalypse fits the Quake vibe absolutely brilliantly. Definitely recommend listening while playing this map.

MC Guest 17 February 2020, 14:21

Visuals are spectacular, gameplay is boring as sin. It's a play-once-and-then-never-again sort of thing.

Gioyo3aa Registered 17 February 2020, 17:00

I'm surprised to see that the map is much shorter than I remembered from my previous try. And I have yet to find any of these secrets ...

Escalate_krsk Registered 7 October 2020, 21:07

Great map with good scripting and action! Fast zombies, architecture and new four-barrel shotgun were extremely cool! The Altar of Storms triggers some nostalgic feelings... memories of Hexen 2 and Oblivion. Never knew I missed Eidolon and golems))

env/gfx 15 January 2021, 11:46

Hi, I am using the markv engine to play Altar Of Storms and it keeps crashing, even though I load it with extra heapsize (I can't set max_editcs to 8192 because it doesn't recognize it as a command). I never had this problem with any of the big releases: Dwell, AD, Warp Spasm, etc.. Can somebody tell me how to get it to not crash?

Also, the game has an autosave feature that I can't disable. Same problem with Dwell and other releases. Can somebody tell me how to disable it? I use a quick save key bind and the autosaves lag the game.


[This comment had to be restored. See this thread for context. This means that there might be problems with its formatting or content missing. The information if the user posted while being logged in was not restored. -Spirit]

onetruepurple 15 January 2021, 17:17

MarkV's dynamic edict allocation fails in this map. Use QuakeSpasm.

[This comment had to be restored. See this thread for context. This means that there might be problems with its formatting or content missing. The information if the user posted while being logged in was not restored. -Spirit]

env/gfx 15 January 2021, 17:59

What about those autosave features on some of the releases. Any tips on how to disable those? "sv_autosave 0" doesn't disable them.

[This comment had to be restored. See this thread for context. This means that there might be problems with its formatting or content missing. The information if the user posted while being logged in was not restored. -Spirit]

triple_agent Registered 19 June 2021, 15:36

My friend, what an epic, arcane adventure. Even though I did not play any of the famous 'Bethesda' RPG games, I can sense the inspiration, just following the common wisdom. Anyhow, I am deeply impressed with the grand architecture - in particular how the architecture drives the progress in a dynamic manner - but even more than that, am I impressed with the new plethora of enemies; particularly the rabid zombies, which I would definitely steal even for a science-fiction genre! The slime in the pottery, combined with the stone golem smashing attack, is such an interesting combo. I also like the 'Quake 2' style quad-shotgun! Everything seems custom made for this map pack; you have put a lot of heart and effort into it and even though not all may be perfect, it is great.

ibloodheuer Registered 20 June 2021, 4:05

Epic, so fucking mega epic map, the start feels a little too empty at first, but when things start to roll... WOW...

Only issue I had with this mini-episode was with the low ammo count on the map... And about the epic boss fight... Awesome!

There is a small gap on some vertex in the lower part of the icy mountains... black on white doesn't feel quite right... But apart from that, perfect map. 5/5.


What an epic map.

Unknown Guest 9 July 2021, 10:50

How the hell do I turn off this autosave nonsense? Please stop turning PC into a nanny state like consoles and at least give the option to disable rather than force enabling hand holding services.

smallfish robocat Guest 11 September 2021, 9:49


could you make a version of this map compatible with Arcane Dimensions?

Thank you in advance. :)

Stop Guest 11 September 2021, 11:37


Alex Ros Registered 10 January 2022, 22:20

Well that was an experience! I played it twice and at 1st I played like 25% and stopped. I got bored by all-the-same "oblivion" dungeons bluish designs. I got lost... so I stopped. But later on I kept hearing "altar of storms", "altar of storms", "altar of storms"... on discord forums. And decided to play it again. Could I miss the point when played the 1st time? Yes! I did miss the point. And on 2nd playthru I appreciated everything. Designs. Layout. Brushwork. New mobs & weapons & coins... non linearity! How much I loved non linearity. All in all this episode (not just a map pack but a full scale episode for sure) goes for 10 out of 10. It's something exclusive and unique. PS. Loved fast zombies!!!

Shikadi Registered 9 March 2022, 15:12

Wow, what an incredible map! It's amazing how well this is made, but sometimes with the Quad Shotgun you ran out easily on shells. Not a hard map at all, and enemies were on point. Traps are interesting too, fell for the first one.

Definetively this has a 4.6/5

Michael Guest 26 June 2022, 18:27

Overall I disliked it

Pros for me -

Atmosphere Architecture

Cons -

The quad shotgun The enemy types Lack of ammo around molten golem

I quit after I ran into the molten golem. There was not enough ammo to take out 4 golem plus him. I noclipped to safety, killed him, but golems still remained. It just felt wrong at that point

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