The days of playing Quake Live in your browser are over. id Software are leaving web browsers behind and adopting a downloadable standalone client for the free-to-play shooter. The move comes as a result of decreasing support for browser plug-ins, and a client offering much more control over the game environment.
The announcement occurred over on the Quake Live forums, where id explained that the change between browser and client would be fairly painless, and the difference almost unnoticeable.
“With the recent announcement of Google Chrome's roadmap to turning off plugin support and the upcoming changes in Firefox, it seems that now is the time to make the transition,” says the post. “This change will allow us to have greater control over the game environment, and more tightly integrate the game with the online components going forward. Some of these benefits will be apparent from day one: getting in and out of games is a smoother experience, and you will be able to view server pings from the match browser before joining the game to better judge connection quality.”
With the client installed, the Quake Live website will still be used for certain functions, such as viewing profiles and managing clans.
An unfortunate side of migrating to a different software solution is that the Quake Live client will support Windows only, leaving Mac and Linux users in the cold. id suggest using emulation or virtualization software to continue playing on those platforms, but offer no reassurance that Mac/Linux friendly clients will ever be developed.