- Free for all
Free for all, also simply called deathmatch, is the basest form of Quake and has its roots in previous version of Quake, as well as back to Doom. Free for all is just like it says -- each player is completely on their own, and the sole goal is to rack up as many frags as is possible.
Just like the name says, you're on your own. Everyone is a viable target.
- Team deathmatch
In team deathmatch, there are two teams -- the reds and the blues. Players join either team, and fight the other. Members of one's own team are conveniently indicated with a yellow triangle above their head, to prevent accidents. In team deathmatch, the weapons respawn rate is by default lower than in deathmatch, which unfortunately can encourage weapon camping in some circumstances.
Don't shoot your own team members!
- Capture the flag
Capture the flag is Quake's version of the classic. As in team deathmatch, there are two teams: blue and red. At two points on each map are the bases, one for red and one for blue. Each side has a flag, which starts out at its respective base. The goal of each team is to penetrate the enemy's base, capture their flag (by touching it), and return it to their own base while their own flag is present at the base; when they do so, their team's score increases by one (individual scores are also kept, but only to track individual progress; it's the capture score that counts). If the flag holder is killed, his flag drops where it is; if it drops into a void or some other inaccessible area, then it automatically returns to its base. When a flag is on the ground outside its base, if it is touched by an enemy, he becomes the flag holder and must take it to his base; if touched by its own team, the flag is immediately returned to its base.
Get the enemy's flag and bring it back to your base, while your own flag is still there.
Tournament, or one-on-one, separates play into rounds; in each round, only two players are chosen to fight. They continue fighting until one reaches the fraglimit, when that player receives a point and the round ends and another two players fight to the death. Players fight the winner; as long as the winner can continue winning rounds, he/she continues to fight. The remainder of the players are forced to spectate and form a queue, in the order they appear in the player list screen, to play against the winner.
Kill 'em all -- one at a time.
- One flag CTF (Team Arena)
One flag CTF is a clever twist on the classic capture the flag scenario. Instead of having two flags -- one at each base -- there is only one flag that can be picked up -- the white flag -- which roughly midway between the red and blue bases. The goal is to take the one flag and then run it into the enemy's base -- returning it to your own base does nothing.
Get the white flag, and take it to the enemy base to score a capture.
- Overload (Team Arena)
In overload there are skull obelisks in each base in place of the flag that is usually there in capture the flag. The goal of each team is to enter the other team's base and destroy their obelisk. The obelisks take damage as if they were very tough opponents; as they take more and more damage they go from clear from progressively redder and redder, until finally they are destroyed and the destroying team scores one capture. After a few moments the skull regenerates and play continues. The obelisk can really take a massive amount of damage -- the equivalent of two dozen direct hits with rockets -- so a sustained attack is necessary to score if the enemy has any semblance of defense.
When the enemy is defending, your team must attack in squads, otherwise there is no hope of destroying their obelisk before they stop you.
- Harvester (Team Arena)
Harvester is the most unique and involved game type available in Quake III: Team Arena, and so requires a little explanation. At each base is a skull receptacle -- it looks like the flag base without the flag. In between the two bases -- in the same location that the white flag appears in one flag CTF games -- there is a skull generator. When players are killed, a skull of the appropriate color pops out of the generator and stays for a fair period of time before spontaneously disappearing. To score, one must collect enemy skulls and bring them to the enemy's skull receptacle; a capture is scored for each skull that is brought back this way. When a player touches one of his own team's skulls, the skull is removed from play (so the enemy cannot collect it). When a player has collected skulls, they trail behind him as he moves, and when a player holding skulls is killed, those skulls are removed from play.
Take in a few skulls at a time -- that way if you're killed it's no great potential loss.