Quake III Arena

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games
Quake III Arena
Quake III Arena cover
id Software
Linux Loki Software
id Tech 3
Release dates
Windows December 2, 1999
Linux December 27, 1999
Mac OS 2000
Quake 1996
Quake II 1997
Quake III Arena 1999
Quake 4 2005
Enemy Territory: Quake Wars 2007
Quake Live 2010

Key points

Engine is open source with modern multi-platform ports available; see Source ports.

General information

Quake Wiki - A detailed wiki for every Quake game made.
Planet Quake - Very old hub for all Quake games. Has mods, guides, and news on the Quake communities.
Func_Msgboard - The mapper hub, new map releases, technique improvements.
bit7.org/quake - Community site with extensive mirrors section, reviews and details on editions of the game.
GOG.com Community Discussions for game series
GOG.com Support Page
Steam Community Discussions
Steam Users' Forums for game series


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Retail Mac OS
GOG.com Quake III: Gold. Not available for purchase in Germany.[1]
Humble Store
Steam Quake III: Gold
Quake III: Gold includes the base game along with the Quake III: Team Arena expansion.

Downloadable content (DLC) and expansions

Name Notes
Quake III: Team Arena Included with Quake III: Gold.

Version differences[edit]


The original, closed-source versions of the game still work for online multiplayer. Many users may prefer to use more recent, improved engines based on the source code release.

Quake Live[edit]

id Software launched a free-to-play browser-based port of Quake III titled Quake Live, that has since migrated to Steam and is no longer free-to-play. Most players have migrated to this service to continue playing, as it adds new features and game modes, and improves compatibility with newer systems.

Essential information[edit]

Source ports[edit]

While the original Quake III Arena point releases still work on modern systems, the release of the engine's source code has enabled the creation of additional variants that improve upon the game but are backwards compatible for multiplayer play. These versions do not support PunkBuster anti-cheat and thus cannot connect to servers using it, though very few still exist.


ioquake3 is a port of the engine to SDL to assist in multi-platform development of stand-alone mods for the Quake III engine. For improvements this port provides, see the Improvements section.


Spearmint is a fork of ioquake3 source port to support XInput controllers and split screen multiplayer up to 4 players.


Patches are available.

Game data[edit]

In-game general settings.
In-game general settings.

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\baseq3
Mac OS

Save game data location[edit]

System Location
Mac OS

Save game cloud syncing[edit]

System Native Notes
Steam Cloud

Video settings[edit]

In-game video settings.
In-game video settings.
Graphics option Option WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
See Widescreen resolution.
A source port is required. See Source ports.
See Widescreen resolution.
4K Ultra HD
See Widescreen resolution.
Field of view (FOV)
Set to 90 by default. From the in game terminal or in a cfg file, adjust the cg_fov value (terminal example: seta cg_fov "90")
Borderless fullscreen windowed
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
A source port is required. See Source ports.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
A source port is required. See Source ports.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
Vsync is the "sync every frame" setting.
60 FPS
120+ FPS
90FPS by default; can be changed by typing /com_maxfps in the console with the number of frames wish. Certain numbers can adversely affect player physics, use at your own risk.
Color blind mode

Widescreen resolution[edit]

The game does not automatically adjust the aspect ratio to match widescreen resolutions. Certain cvars may be set to fix this:

  • r_mode -1 sets the display mode to the custom resolution specified by the following cvars.
  • r_customwidth, r_customheight set the custom display mode.
  • r_customaspect sets the aspect ratio for the 3D scene (not the HUD or menus). Divide your aspect ratio (i.e. 16/10 = 1.6 etc.)

Input settings[edit]

In-game control settings.
In-game control settings.
Keyboard and mouse Native Notes
Mouse acceleration
Mouse sensitivity
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Controller support
Limited modern controller support in vanilla. A source port is required for full xinput controllers support. See Source ports
Full controller support
A source port is required for menu navigation support. See Source ports. Cannot navigate Team Arena menus.
Controller remapping
Controller sensitivity
Controller Y-axis inversion
Needs to be manually mapped to the specific direction.
Additional information
Button prompts
Controller hotplugging
Haptic feedback

Audio settings[edit]

In-game audio settings.
In-game audio settings.
Audio options Native Notes
Separate volume controls
Surround sound
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
EAX support
A3D 2.0[2] only[3]
Broken since one of the first patches[4] (possibly 1.17)[5] 1.25 point release beta is the last version with A3D support.


Language UI Audio CC Notes


Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
Local play
4 A source port is required. See Source ports
LAN play
Online play
All official maps are designed for at most 16 players. However, dedicated servers can be set to have no max player limit.

Connection types


Protocol Port(s) and/or port range(s)
TCP (outbound) 27950, 27952, 27960, 27965
UDP (outbound) 27950, 27952, 27960, 27965

Issues fixed[edit]

Video glitches on the main menu[edit]

Main Menu Graphics Glitches[6]
  1. Disable the Steam Overlay (right-click the game in your Steam library -> Properties, untick "Enable Steam Community In-Game").
  2. Launch Quake III Arena.
  3. Go to Setup -> System -> disable GL Extensions.

Game crashes on exit[edit]

Game Crashes Upon Exit
  1. Right-click the game in your Steam library.
  2. Click Properties.
  3. Uncheck "Enable Steam Community In-Game".

Other information[edit]


Technical specs Supported Notes
OpenGL 1.1
64-bit executable
A source port is required. See Source ports.

System requirements[edit]

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 95, NT 4.0 98, ME, 2000, XP
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium 233 MHz or Pentium II 300 MHz or AMD K6-2 350 MHz or Athlon.
System memory (RAM) 64 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 25 MB 500 MB
Video card (GPU) 8 MB of VRAM
DirectX 7 compatible
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) Any distribution (ports of the engine available in most distros' package repositories)
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium 233 MHz / Pentium II 300 MHz or AMD K6-2 350 MHz / Athlon. Also suitable are CPUs exceeding 400MHz of any ISA.
System memory (RAM) 64 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 25 MB 500 MB
Video card (GPU) 8 MB of VRAM


  2. Games help: Quake III Arena - Vortex of Sound (retrieved)
  3. EAX in Quake3? Nope. - Shacknews
  4. Acoustic Edge and win2k drivers - Neoseeker Forums
  5. [quake3] Re: A3D - icculus.org
  6. Quake III Arena graphics problem - Steam Users' Forums