Customizing your Quake Live config

A well customized Quake Live config that fits your preferences well enough is the beginning of good game play. Quake is one of the few games that allows extreme config customization. This is one aspect that makes Quake, in my opinion, better than all other shooters and creates extra opportunities.

Config Location

Let’s begin with finding the config file as Id software has done a great effort hiding it for us. You can find your config file in the following locations:

Windows Vista, Windows 7 or Windows 8(.1) (Standalone game): %userprofile%\AppData\LocalLow\id Software\quakelive\home\baseq3

Steam version: %ProgramFiles(x86)%\Steam\SteamApps\common\Quake Live\<yoursteamID>\baseq3

Windows XP (Standalone game): %appdata%\id Software\quakelive\home\baseq3

Please note you have to allow to see hidden files before you can actually go to this map in Windows.

You will find several configs in the baseq3 folder, such as autoexec.cfg and qzconfig. I personally prefer to create and customize a personal config because other methods are not optimal, yet.

Now lets take a look at some of the things you can change or add in your config.


For Capture The Flag following team binds can be useful:

bind [KEY] “say_team BASE LOST, NEED HELP”
bind [KEY] “say_team READY FOR ATTACK”

Customization commands

Here you can find a few of the important commands to distinguish your config from another one.Values are indicative and examples. Customize to your personal preference.

  • seta sensitivity “value” change your mouse sensitivity
  • seta cg_crosshairPulse “0” 0 – crosshair will not enlarge when you pickup an item, 1 – crosshair will enlarge when you pickup an item
  • seta cg_crosshairColor “2” values 0 – 7 to set the color of your crosshair (needs cg_crosshairhealth 0 to work)
  • seta cg_bob “0” removes bobbing while moving (bobbing = the slightly moving up/down from your screen as you walk)
  • seta cg_autoswitch “0” 1 – switch gun when picking it up, 2 – doesn’t switch gun when picking it up.
  • seta cg_kickscale “0” your screen won’t shake anymore when you get hit
  • seta cg_newWeaponBar “1” 1 – weaponbar constantly on the left, 0 – weaponbar above health and armor upon switching
  • seta cg_truelightning “0.75” values 0 – 1 to determine the stiffness of your lightning beam. 0 considers lag, 1 is totally stiff. A good mix used by many is 0.75.
  • seta r_picmip “5” values 0 – 10 to determine the level of detail of the walls. 0 being the highest detail.
  • seta r_vertexlight “1” vertex lighting, this should increase your FPS.
  • seta cg_fov “100” change your field of view
  • seta cg_noprojectiletrail “1” removes smoke trail from rockets and grenades and increases visibility.
  • seta cg_leveltimerdirection “0” 1 – timer counts down, 0 – timer counts up.
  • cg_crosshairBrightness “1” Lower values between 0-1 will make the crosshair appear darker, becoming black at “0”
  • seta r_drawSun “0” remove the sun.
  • seta cg_drawGun  “2” value “0” will hide your weapon – “1” value will show your weapon, but swaying as you walk – “2” value will show your weapon and it will not sway as you walk – “3” will show a translucent weapon model
  • seta r_dynamiclight “0” remove rocket flash, etc.
  • seta cg_switchOnEmpty “1” 1 – switch gun when empty, 2 – doesn’t switch gun when empty.
  • seta s_ambient “0” turn off the ambient sound.
  • seta model “Mynx” your model.
  • seta cg_forceTeamModel “Mynx” Force all team models to be this same model.
  • seta cg_forceEnemyModel “tankjr/bright” Force all enemy models to be the same model.

Custom HUD

A lot of custom huds and custom crosshairs can be found on the internet. Once you found one that suits you, place the hud into your base folder: /baseq3/ui/.
Following line should then be added in your config: seta cg_hudFiles “ui/HUDNAME.cfg”

There’s a more detailed quakelive hud Installation guide on this site written by EmSixTeen as well.

There are still more possibilities to tweak your config and more ways to customize will become available soon. This post should get you started to get a decent config, though.

Example Configs

If you want some examples of Quake Live configs check out the configs on our quake live configs section, which features some configs of the best players in the world such as Fox or Stermy.


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