Quake 2 RTX gets June release date for PC and Linux

Quake 2 RTX will be available for PC and Linux players this June, so be on the lookout.


Looking to jump into Quake 2? The next time you play it, the game will have had a considerable overhaul, with Quake 2 RTX on the horizon.

Nvidia announced that its Quake 2 RTX ray-traced remaster of the classic shooter is finally getting a release date in June, meaning now's the perfect time to kit out you computer, grab a great new gaming mouse and keyboard, and get ready to frag.

For players with a GeForce RTX graphics card or other hardware capable of supporting the graphical pull the game will take on your computer, you can grab the first three levels of the game for free, complete with path-traced graphics and a suite of other enhancements that will make your return to the world of Quake that much sweeter. What's more, if you already have a copy of Quake 2, you can play through the game in its entirety and go up against others in multiplayer.

The game's source code will also be posted to GitHub so that others can tweak it to their liking or use the same code to ray trace Quake 2 modes and other total conversion options.

How did this come together? It's the work of a bunch of fans, basically.

"We’re massive fans of the original, and even-bigger fans of technology, so when presented with the opportunity to remaster a classic game with all that ray tracing can offer, we jumped at the chance," Nvidia wrote on its official blog. "Quake II RTX demonstrates the possibilities of ray tracing, and offers a glimpse at the future of gaming, with realistic real-time lighting, shadows and effects."

Here's a slew of other improvements the game will have, for those curious about what it will feature:

  • Improved Global Illumination rendering, with three selectable quality presets, including two-bounce GI
  • Multiplayer support
  • Time of day options that radically change the appearance of some levels
  • New weapon models & textures
  • New dynamic environments (Stroggos surface, and space)
  • Better physically based atmospheric scattering, including settings for Stroggos sky
  • Real-time reflectivity of the player and weapon model on water and glass surfaces, and player model shadows, for owners of the complete game (the original Shareware release does not include player models)
  • Improved ray tracing denoising technology
  • All 3,000+ original game textures have been updated with a mix of Q2XP mod-pack textures and our own enhancements
  • Updated effects with new sprites and particle animations
  • Dynamic lighting for items such as blinking lights, signs, switches, elevators and moving objects
  • Caustics approximation to improve water lighting effects
  • High-quality screenshot mode that makes your screenshots look even better
  • Support for the old OpenGL renderer, enabling you to switch between RTX ON and RTX OFF
  • Cylindrical projection mode for wide-angle field of view on widescreen displays

Ready to check it out? Quake 2 RTX is coming to PC and Linux on June 6. That's just enough time to get through the first game, which we totally know you have, right? Right. 

Senior Editor

Fueled by horror, rainbow-sugar-pixel-rushes, and video games, Brittany is a Senior Editor at Shacknews who thrives on surrealism and ultraviolence. Follow her on Twitter @MolotovCupcake and check out her portfolio for more. Like a fabulous shooter once said, get psyched!

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