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Quake 2 RTX is now available for free

The glory of ray-tracing graphics arrive in Quake 2 RTX, which is now available to download and play entirely for free.


It's time to make another dive back into classic FPS action, as Quake 2 RTX is now available to download and play for free. As one of the most revered shooter titles in video game history, Quake 2 was seen as a slick opportunity to showcase the power of ray tracing graphics. Now, anyone with access to an RTX enabled GPU can check out the technology's power without paying a dime.

Quake 2 is over two decades old at this rate, but it's an iconic game recognized the world over. Of course, it's safe to say that the game's graphics haven't been seen as cutting-edge for a very long time. However, the beauty of RTX technology is that it can render just about anything with rich and stunning detail.

Clearly this was the thinking behind Nvidia's Lightspeed Studios, which decided to give the game an RTX-enabled makeover. The team obviously worked out ray tracing — in this instance path tracing — but also threw in some improved textures as well as a new flare gun that players can use as something of a toy to play with RTX lighting.

Of course, Quake 2 RTX isn't exactly Quake 2 — it won't run on the old Windows 98 machine tucked away in your basement. Users will need at least an RTX 2060 graphics card, but aside from that, an i3 3220 should be enough to do the trick. If anyone out there is actually running an RTX GPU with a third-generation Intel i3 processor, please, let us know how that's working out in the Chatty below.

As the popularity of ray traced graphics grow, so too will the influence of RTX. Quake 2 RTX is a great way for players to check out the technology in a form factor that's intimately familiar, and it's available to download and play right now for free through Steam as well as the Nvidia website. For the latest RTX coverage, stop by Shacknews' Nvidia RTX home page.

Guides Editor

Kevin Tucker is a core component of Shacknews' powerful guide development team. For questions, concerns, tips, or to share constructive criticism, he can be reached on Twitter @dukeofgnar or through e-mail at

From The Chatty
  • reply
    June 6, 2019 12:05 PM

    Kevin Tucker posted a new article, Quake 2 RTX is now available for free

    • reply
      June 6, 2019 9:48 PM

      I don't think it's entirely free. It gave me an option to either "locate my install files" or run the shareware version of the game. I was a bit surprised they aren't just releasing it in its entirety.

    • reply
      June 7, 2019 12:51 AM

      Quake II RTX is nice but where is my Quake (1996) RTX now?

      • reply
        June 7, 2019 5:19 AM

        Someone buy me a 2080 and I’ll see what I can do.

    • reply
      June 7, 2019 5:55 AM

      On a 1080 I get no skybox in the first map and no outdoor lighting -- that first outside area is pitch black. Anybody know what's up?

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