Box art - Quake Champions

5 Tips I Wish I Knew Before Starting Quake Champions

With Quake Champions having entered Early Access, players are flocking to the game with the introduction of the $29.99 Champions Pack, which grants access to all the current Champions in-game and other goodies. The latest installment in id Software’s long-running arena shooter franchise, Quake Champion exists as a free-to-play shooter that matches you up with players all over the world so you can shoot, jump, frag, and hurdle the dead to your heart’s content. I’ve just begun to play through Quake Champions, and now that it’s in Early Access and I’m seeing friends and acquaintances slipping in and trying it on for size, there are tips and tricks I certainly wish I had known before taking the plunge. Let my failures become your successes with these five tips.

Utilize your warm-up time


Just like Overwatch’s skirmishes while you’re waiting to be loaded into a game, Quake Champions will allow you a little bit of time to run around like a chicken with its head head cut off, and you’ll want to use this time to your advantage. Don’t just stand still or turn around in circles like an impatient slug. This is your time to survey your surroundings and see what the terrain has to offer. You can also practice with your champion’s selected active ability, test out its powers and cooldown, and get some perspective on how you’re going to play in a certain arena.

Because there’s a first time for every arena when you’re a newbie, and sometimes you’re going to need some time to get to know each one if you ever want to emerge victorious. You may want to do this before each arena match begins for some time, because it’s a boon for you to know where things are if you’re going to use certain areas for strategic purposes. Or camping, if that’s the kind of person you are. This isn’t a camping game, but to each his own.

Use your Rocket Launcher wisely


Don’t underestimate the power of your rocket launcher. You can use it for several things, including the very useful rocket jump you’ve probably seen before in the original Quake from back in 1996. You’ll need to aim toward the ground, fire a rocket, and jump at the exact time as you shoot, and though you’ll lose a little bit of health, you’ll perform a massive high jump that can propel you out of the path of enemies and into safety if you find yourself dying at an exponential rate. When you turn your launcher on the enemy, aim near the ground too instead of point-blank for a better spread and to ensure you take at least a bit of your enemy’s health if you can’t take it all.

Customize your keys and layout


This is a first-person shooter that you’ll be playing on PC, so make sure you’ve got key bindings that make sense for you. There’s no use learning a new set of keys mapped to entirely different key if there’s something that works better for you. If you want your shotgun mapped to a different key, then by all means go for it. The default keys are’t immovable, so change them up to your liking, and you’ll find yourself performing a whole lot more positively in the end.

Learn the art of the strafe jump


This could very well save your life if you learn how to do it, over and over and over. Originally a bug in the original Quake, you can certainly use it in Quake Champions. essentially, you press the forward key, and while releasing it you’ll jump and press left or right, which is referred to as the “strafe-jump.” Then you’ve got to move your mouse in the direction you’re strafing while holding down the keys. It can be very difficult to do, but done correctly, you’ll gain some impressive speed and zip past the enemies like it’s no thing.

Never, ever stop moving


This should go without saying, but this is a Quake game, so you don’t want to take the time to stop and smell the roses. You need to make sure you’re on the move at all times. If not, you may as well stop and play Overwatch or Call of Duty, because this is not your kind of game.