Disclaimer: I did not translate the original interview. The interview is wholly translated by /u/acidreign3 and all credits go to him. I just thought it'd be convenient to have this on the site as it's quite an interesting read.

Editor's Note: I have attempted to the best of my ability to interpret a translated copy of this interview to accurately, and honestly reflect the point, and context of each question, and answer. If you have any questions, remarks, concerns or complaints about the accuracy or veracity of the below interview then I ask you the publicly comment below, or privately message me, about specific part(s), and the nature of your concerns. -- xero.


The interview below was hosted by gg.ru with Tim Willits of id Software where he discusses Quake Champions. This interview sheds significant new light about the game, it's reception by the general public, where the developers envision the game going, it's place in the current e-sports scene, Champion Balance, maps, the business model, and dealing with cheaters. He also announced players that buy the "Champion Pack" will have access to all current and future Champions.

The first question will be about PAX East, which has just ended. This is the first event where Quake Champions has been widely shown, and available for public play. So -- What are your impressions of the event, and what sort of responses did you receive? Quake Champions?

We brought the game out to PAX East and it was very nice for us. The most common comment I heard: "Yes! This is the Quake!" This was very important to us as it tells us that we are on the right track and heading to where planned. What we have preserved is the spirit and heart of Quake, which we all love. We received a lot positive of feedback and comments, and as , such that the Champions did not kill the game process, it is still Quake. It was fun to watch people impacting the game with the different Champions' abilities. So I'm absolutely happy with the display of the game at PAX last weekend.

Congratulations. Now you've received a significant volume of feed back. How do you take advantage of it? Who will process the information and how?

There was a lot of feedback from professional, and casual fans who tried the game out which we will pay close attention to.

We took the game to the Intel Extreme Masters in Katowice, Poland, which took place a couple of weeks ago and there we have showed to a large number of professional competitive players.

We took their thoughts and comments, and made some changes "in the command mode" of the game. They also had some very specific requests with respect to the mechanics of the game such requesting faster weapon switch times, comments on movement techniques, some of which we tested. As players are aware they can now register for the closed beta, and our plan is to utilize a small of group of testers, and collect their feedback as wish to take into account the concerns of the community. If all goes well, we will expand the beta to a larger amount of players.

So, closed beta testing is just around the corner?

Yes! Yes! Yes! If you go to quakechampions.com, you can register for the beta, and in a few weeks we will begin to invite people to test. Wait for your invitation! Very soon. Bear in mind that the number of invitees will be increased gradually, as we want to test the server infrastructure, and the the so-called "backend," things like matchmaking, Champion balance, game modes, as well as collect statistics. We will expand the number of participants in closed beta so stay tuned!

Another question about the closed beta. Can you name the number of people who are currently signed-up?

It's a big number, which amazing for us. We are very happy with the response, and the current amount of willing participants is enough for all of our closed beta plans. We want to test the balance of Champions AND make sure that none of the Champions has a big advantage.

It is hundreds, thousands, or even tens of thousands?

I can't talk about the numbers ;) I can say one thing, you know what the second country in the number of registrations in the beta test after the United States? Russia!

On the top of "e-sports" how do you plan to promote Quake Champions? Will third party organizations like ESL be involved, or will the events schedule generally run through id Software, and Quakecon?

As we've said before we intend to push the game into the e-sports scene. We can't disclose any agreements with third parties at the moment, but yes, we are negotiating with large companies such as ESL. We're designing the game with e-sports in mind including the sort of options which might make viewing or broadcasting matches easier. We'd also like to introduce a suitable game mode for e-sports, and we talked about this stuff with some professional players. We feel that a duel game is absent in the market, and so we decided to implement it in a Quake Champions. We are committed to e-sports. Quake has the longest history of competitive gaming and we most definitely are planning to hold as many tournaments as we can for Quake Champions.

Will we see on Quake Champions competition at the upcoming QuakeCon?

Yes, definitely. We want to hold on Quake Champions tournament at QuakeCon this year, and I already talked about this at the last QuakeCon. So yes, there will be a tournament and soon you'll learn more about it. This is very important for us.

You mentioned game modes, and I'd like to ask about the competitive, and ranked modes. What will they be?

You will be able to play in ranked duel, and TDM games. We have a new e-sports game mode called "Sacrifice." We had a famous Quake player tell us last year that it needed to be completely replaced! (ha ha). In developing a competitive mode we relied quite heavily on the feedback from professional players and we knew that we need both a team mode, and a duel mode.

Can you tell us how the matchmaking system will work?

We've continued to the improved the system thorough development, and it will work in a pretty standard fashion. Players will select their region, click search and the game will match them with other players of their skill level.

Lets talk maps. Blood Covenant is Campgrounds, taken from Quake III Arena. Are there any other famous maps, such as Bloodrun or Aerowalk, that have made it to Quake Champions?

This is a very good question. We have another classic map which is almost ready for release. I can't say what kind of a map, but I am absolutely sure that will be all to painfully familiar. This map is for dueling, and people will be happy to see and play it.

We're glad to hear. Each previous game Quake had its own unique movement mechanics, Quake World had bunny hopping, in Quake 3 it was strafe jumping, and Quake 4 had crouch sliding. The movement mechanics of these games have influence the design, and balance of maps. It is always influenced the balance of maps and their design. How will Quake Champions deal with the issue of having so many different movement mechanics?

Another great question. As you said, different Champions have different movement mechanics. Anarki has air control like in Quake World, and Ranger strafe jumping as it was in Quake 3. This presents a certain challenge to design maps, for example in Blood Covenant, there is a place where Anarki or Slash can get to much faster and easier than other champions. This is also taken into account in the design of a balance between the Champions. We are trying to find a delicate balance but here's another Blood Covenant example: If you play Nyx you can jump, wall-run, and get to the railgun from bridge, and do the same to get back. Sorlag on the other hand can only rocket jump across, but playing with Anarki you can gain enough speed to make the jump outright. So, depending on the Champion you play, you need to understand your options applicable to that particular map. We hope to further delve into this process and find the perfect balance.

Now we have a few questions about the technical side of the game. The first one of the servers. Will you be able to run your own server Quake Champions?

In the beginning we'll run the server themselves. We'll need servers in the right places to provide playable settings for the greatest number of players. More so, it is very important for us to manage servers as we will need to test them for load and stability. The game will be free-to-play and we expect a huge number of players. Players will be able to run custom-servers, to invite people to play with, but the official server will be will be managed by us.

The server for the official ranked matches will all be under your control?

Yes, the server for the matchmaking will be exclusively under our control. You can start the server, but matchmaking would not work.

The next question is about the notorious 120 Hz. In one of your interviews that you gave a few years ago about Rage, said that most games run at 30 Hz, and Rage will run at 60Hz. In Quake Champions we are talking about 120 Hz, what impact will this have on the game.

So, it's about the hertz? It is necessary to separate the concept of frames per section (FPS) and hertz. Hertz is a concept which is embedded in the rate of change of the game space, and FPS is simply the number of frames per second drawn. Quake Champions we strive to get 120 Hz to ensure excellent responsiveness of the game. We want to make it as smooth and as fast as possible.

Does that mean that the server will send updates to the client 120 per second? Or it is this only the client side?

This is only on the client side. Internet would get cluttered up if you put games in 120 packets per second. This is a client-side responsiveness we're talking about.

What is currently the general hardware requirements Quake Champions?

We are currently focused on debugging game-play and balancing Champions. We have not really started doing any work on optimization. We want to try to do everything possible to make the game playable on as many setups as possible. We have not yet begun on optimization. We should have some information on hardware requirements soon, and will publish it once we know.

How do you plan to deal with cheaters, and cheating, especially with the game utilizing a free-to-play model.

We know the problem and we are working on two things to tackle this issue. Firstly, we try to push as much as possible of the critical game moments from the client to the server. Secondly, we are now working with an third party to help us with this issue, the details of which we have not announced. All that I can say we work with a certain company, which helps us with the anti-cheat, and that we have a whole group that works with the company. We will announce more details soon hopefully.

So we're almost at the end, can you please go over the business model.

The game itself is free but the free part is only one champion -- Ranger. You can buy a Champions Pack with all champions or buy individual Champions temporarily or permanently.

If I buy a Champions Pack at the start of the game do I get access to the Champions who appear later in the game?

Yes, the complete package includes full access to the current set of Champions and all future Champions.

Thank you, Tim, for your time, we hope to speak to you again in the near future. Thank you, and good bye!

Thank you and good evening!

Sources: goodgame.ru, translation