The transformative power of ray tracing has proven itself across many different games but perhaps the most impressive upgrades come from revisiting older, classic PC titles, and a recent mod for the original Quake delivers frankly astonishing results. This is less a mod and more a full-on RT remaster for one of PC’s finest games, arriving courtesy of Sultim Tsyrendashiev, the maker of path-traced renditions of Serious Sam and Doom, and who’s currently working on RT Half-Life. Tsyrendashiev has taken the Vulkan port of Quake by id Software’s Axel Gneiting and delivered something very, very special.
But first up, how do you get your hands on the modified game? Simply download the necessary files from the VKQuake-RT github page and merge them with the version of Quake you own per the instructions on the page. It’s all relatively straightforward, but I do recommend making one small change to the instructions. DLSS and FSR2 are supported – and both deliver great results overall, by the way – but the recommended DLSS 2.4.0 should be swapped out for the earlier DLSS 2.2.6. Doing this eliminates blurring issues that kick in with the more recent rendition of Nvidia’s machine-learning upscaling technology.
Beyond image reconstruction, gamers actually get two different RT implementations with this mod – a ‘classic’ option that looks more like the original game with some very nice ray-traced upgrades, alongside a full path-tracer, radically transforming the aesthetic of the game.