Some comparisons between original Quake’s “large, open areas” and their counterparts in RMQ’s Episode 1. All the episode 1 shots are pretty sketchy, because they’re not detailed or even finished yet. Anyway, I’ll talk about them for a bit.
This is the familiar first outside area of the game, which has a little bridge right after you exit a lift, and something that looks like the entrance to the slipgate complex.
In the original, this wasn’t much of a setpiece nor much of an outdoor area. Translated to real world scale, you’re basically crossing a quiet village street here. It can’t be more than 25 meters between the lift exit and the base entrance.
The remake interprets this place as a small valley with several bunker entrances scattered around, and some military stuff and gadgets located around these entrances. The bridge is still there, only it’s now a road bridge and it rotates across the river, which is your first task as a player before you can cross it. The lift is still there, and the entrance to the slipgate complex is still there. The progression is much the same. The concrete texture is referencing the original, the brown metal parts are just not complete yet.
The scale is bigger. Let’s say the distance is now like 100, 150 meters. I haven’t measured it. Anyway, it now includes an objective (get the bridge moving) and something that hopefully looks like a setpiece when you approach it.
The largeish outdoor area will help a lot in hiding the keys the player must collect later. Thanks to Lardarse’s randomizer code, we can put the keys into different spots each time you play, so you’ll have to actually visit all of the map during your search for the damn keys. We’re cruel like that.
This is the area from e1m2 where you first meet a Fiend. It’s a box with the fiend door and button, the door you came in through, and a rounded structure with a barred exit (opens when you release the fiend).
The remake interprets the rounded structure as a tower, the barred exit as the tower entrance (consequently opened by way of a Tower key), the area in front of it as a large courtyard surrounded by some other buildings, the fiend door as the castle barbican (fortified entrance), and the door you entered from as a portcullis separating the courtyard from the inner parts of the castle (Castle of the Damned, remember).
The tower key is hidden around the area; the portcullis that was the silver key door is opened in a completely new and pretty medieval manner. The fiend box still has fiends, but is actually the castle entrance and leads into the outside. Meaning, the surrounding terrain (still missing from the image).
Instead of fiends and ogres, this courtyard is easily big enough for a horde of knights (and dragons). The tower will need to be climbed. The rest of the map is totally open and connected, so you could parachute down the tower and bunny hop across the roofs if you wanted (and if you had a parachute).
The roofed buildings are not props; they are complete on the inside and you’ll see those during the first part of playing the level.
Gloom Keep. The original has only the front part of the keep, set into a surrounding rock wall. There is a short bridge across a sort of moat. Again, the size of a quiet alley.
For the remake, I thought it would be nice to have the thing shown in its entirety, sitting inside a somewhat larger moat, with a kind of dam or bridge leading towards it. The large moat can again be surrounded by outlying terrain eventually, but the keep is no longer jammed with its back into a rock-textured brush. Instead it’s a pretty big, fat fortress that’s not too friendly towards intruders. And this means instead of being attacked by two scrags and a lowly knight, you will be greeted by the biggest guns the Middle Ages had to offer (along with some more sci-fi means of mass destruction, freshly assimilated into Shub’s mindless horde) while you dash across that bridge trying to avoid the impacts. Good luck.
The player will need to traverse the entire outside of the keep in order to access four branches of underground dungeon, again collecting keyitems at the end of each. Routing the player through the structure will be fun.
There are similarly large outdoor setpieces in other RMQ maps.