Gaming archivists have discovered the long-lost Quake GBA port, which is made by the same porter who created the legendary ‘impossible’ Doom SNES port – and what’s more, you can play this version of the classic FPS game for yourself.
There are many surprising things about the Doom port to the Super Nintendo from 1995, such as the technical wonder of having the FPS on a 16-bit console and that it claimed Doom was set in the far-off future of 2022. However, the coolest fact about it is that the port was mostly made by a single programmer – Randy Linden.
According to archivists Forest Illusion, in 2002 Linden put his skills to the test porting Quake to Nintendo’s Game Boy Advance handheld. He created an example demo to show how Quake could run on the console, but it didn’t get the go-ahead – mostly because, by the time it was working, the public was moving on from the GBA. Recently, that Quake demo was rediscovered on a random flash drive in Linden’s storage – and is now available to download on Forest Illusion. You’ll need a GBA emulator to play it, of course.
Technically speaking though, this demo is not really Quake. It’s a tech demo with the look and feel of Quake that is designed to show off how the game would run on the GBA hardware – it’s fully 3D-rendered, unlike most FPS games on GBA. However, it doesn’t use any assets from Quake, not even music or sound effects. It just looks a lot like it.
Apparently, Linden repurposed the engine he used and created his own original FPS called Cyboid – which you can download from his website. Funnily enough, it bears a strong resemblance to Quake.
As for Quake itself, it got an official remaster in 2021 and even a horde mode. With the Xbox Bethesda showcase coming up, it’s possible a new Quake game could be revealed. It probably won’t be available on GBA, however.