Installing Quake III Arena for Linux (especially x64 bit)

The original installer for Quake III Arena will not work on my Ubuntu 12.10 x64 – I have tried many solutions with no luck 🙁 However, Quake III Arena is opensource (except data such as music and graphics) now and some nice people have made a great installer (link) where we only need to add the non-opensource stuff (called pak0.pk3) from the quake 3 arena cd and then we have a fully functional Quake III Arena. This is not a weird Quake III Arena clone – it is the real thing – essentially just with a different installer. Here is what you do…

1. Download the engine and data files installers from link. You should get two files called something like: and
2. Open a terminal (press CTRL+ALT+T on Ubuntu) and navigate to the directory containing the installer files – use the “cd” (change directory) command – e.g. “cd Downloads” in Ubuntu to go to your Downloads folder.
3. Write “chmod +x” and “chmod +x” to make it possible to execute the installers.
4. Install the engine by writing “./” and run through the wizard.
5. Copy the “pak0.pk3” file from the Quake III Arena CD to the baseq3 subfolder of the IOQuake3 install directory. On my computer I just copy “/media/<username>/Quake III Arena/Quake3/baseq3/PAK0.PK3” to “/home/<username>/ioquake/baseq3/PAK0.PK3”. You can copy the files using the “cp” command in the terminal or use the File Manager Nautilus on Ubuntu (start it by writing “nautilus&“).
6. Install the game files by writing “./” and run through the wizard.
7. Run the game by writing “./ioquake3” from the IOQuake3 install directory – happy fragging 🙂

Please let me know if this guide was helpful or if you have any questions.

Published by Anders Aaberg

IT-development consultant at Nine A/S MSc. Advanced Computer Science @ University of Leeds, UK

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    1. Hi Pete.

      I am not sure that I understand your question. When you run the wizard (./, then you can choose where you would like to install the game. All you need to copy from the cd is pak0.pk3

  1. when i installed it it worked fine but the colours, they were lime green light red all the but thr right colours could you help me?

    1. Oh I am very sorry for the late answer, my life has been turned upside down the past year.

      Are you sure that you are using the correct video card drivers? Maybe you need to use the proprietary ones. Try to Google for: ubuntu install proprietary graphics drivers.

  2. Guide was “spot on” – I’d been having a bit of trouble getting ioquake to run my original Quake3 paks, and your guide got me up and running fast.

  3. Hello, I just come from the ioquake website, because I was seeking for help, (ctrl+v — aka paste — is not working).
    Literally after hours to get ioquake working (not that familiar with linux), they just told me, that the official and “stable” install packets on their site are more than 5(!) years old and nobody is using “that shit” (how they called it at the chat room on the ioq-site) anymore. I should use the “angst-builds” ( instead. Sure, “ANGST-builds”
    Wow! A perfect trap there to fuck up users, I would say!
    Not your fault Anders, I found and installed ioquake on my own. But as I just walked by here, I like to warn you and your readers.
    I am now thinking of installing the original Quake 3 Arena on Linux, which is possible and should run without a virtual machine, as far as I know.

    1. Hey thanks for your comment, though I am sorry that you are in the mood to kill 🙂 And sorry for the late reply – busy life!

      I just tried to install the game again – it seems to work perfect for me with “Ubuntu 14.04.1 LTS”. No bugs at all.

      What linux distribution and version are you running? Could it perhaps be a hardware issue?

  4. it dont work like i downloaded the two files but when i put the command it’s saying that there is no such files can you help me ?

    1. Sorry for the crazy late reply 🙂 Did you remember to copy the pak0 files from the Quake 3 Arena cd? (step 5)

      If possible, can you show me which files that you have in the folder and which commands that you run?

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