QuakeCon 2015 opening day thoughts, impressions and what we saw!

Bethesda is one of the largest game publishers in the world, with huge brands like The Elder Scrolls, Doom, and Quake to its name. This year the publisher stepped up its E3 performance in a big way, hosting an E3 press conference and announcing several big titles such as Fallout 4 and Dishonored 2.

The E3 presentation might be new, but Bethesda is no stranger to sharing game news and reveals to its fans. Every year the publisher hosts a fan convention called QuakeCon in Dallas, TX. This year marks the 20th anniversary of QuakeCon, and Bethesda has several exciting events going on throughout the convention (which runs through Saturday the 25th at the Hilton Anatole and is FREE to attend).

I'm at QuakeCon right now, where the opening ceremony kicked off earlier today. Read on for full details and what we've seen and will be seeing at the latest and greatest QuakeCon!

QuakeCon 2015 opening ceremony

Welcome to QuakeCon 2015

As always, QuakeCon opened with an energetic presentation that highlighted the events and goings on of the show, and even included a few big announcements.

Highlights for attendees:

  • Numerous tournaments will go on throughout the convention with prizes provided by Intel. All tournament computers and servers come from Alienware and Dell. Network infrastructure provided by AT&T.
  • Donate blood to the American Red Cross and receive a free Doom blood water bottle bag (which looks very cool).
  • Donate money to the Dallas Pets Alive charity to get a free Fallout 4 frisbee.
  • Friday movie night: Watch the original Jurassic Park presented by Master Pancake (who provide comedic commentary) or Paddington Bear for the kiddies.

QuakeCon 2015 swag

QuakeCon 2015 swag: shirts, hoodie, and power bank

QuakeCon 2015 Panels and sales

Friday has two exciting panels in store: an exclusive Fallout 4 presentation starring the game's director Todd Howard and an Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited panel. Attendees of the latter will receive 500 free crowns (premium currency). We'll be there to report on both panels!

Saturday has two more panels in store. First up, Geoff Keighley moderates a panel focusing on the evolution of gaming over the last 20 years. Most excitingly, attendees can catch the Doom panel for an in-depth look at next year's Doom game.

Gamers who can't attend the convention can still celebrate Bethesda by picking up many of the publisher's games on sale over the weekend.

Today through Saturday on Steam, a different selection of Bethesda titles will go on sale for cheap. PC gamers can even pick up the publisher's full catalog of Steam titles for $99.99, including the Fallout, Elder Scrolls, Doom, and Quake series, as well as The Evil Within, Dishonored, and more. Check this link for the full Steam sale lineup.

Xbox One has Elder Scrolls Online discounted, and several Xbox 360 games and DLC have sales as well.

QuakeCon 2015 opening day Paul Acevedo Doom

Paul Acevedo revs up for Doom

Getting our Doom on

The QuakeCon 2015 opening ceremony ended with a brief look at the new Doom. First we watched a fast-paced trailer featuring lots of gory monster kills.

Next Marty Stratton of Bethesda dropped some details about the Doom alpha and beta that will precede the full game's spring 2016 release. Players who preordered or purchased the first printing of Wolfenstein: the New Order can sign up for beta access to Doom. Some of those gamers will randomly be chosen to join the multiplayer alpha that starts within the next month or two. See our story for more details.

An audience member exclaimed that he wanted to play Doom today, and Marty replied that might just happen. It turns out that Doom multiplayer is playable right now at QuakeCon! All attendees can line up at the back of the exhibit hall for a chance to play a networked multiplayer game in team deathmatch mode.

Nobody but the British likes lines, though! Thankfully, Bethesda hid a number of red, blue, and yellow tickets themed after Doom keycards beneath some of the audience's chairs. Everyone madly scrambled for these tickets – I scored a couple of red ones myself. With a ticket in hand, attendees can jump ahead of the line and get their first taste at player-versus-player fragging in the new Doom.

QuakeCon 2015 opening day Sega Dreamcast Dead or Alive 2

Attendees playing Dead or Alive 2 on a Sega Dreamcast console as they wait in line

Plenty of QuakeCon news to come

Besides the Doom alpha and beta news, Bethesda also announced Fallout Anthology for PCs. The Anthology contains all five PC games released to date and comes in a striking "Mini nuke" bombshell case. The case even makes a sound effect! It will be available in limited quantities starting on September 29. Read our story for more deets.

Bethesda has also just launched its new Bethesda.net website. The publisher considers this to be a cross-platform way to connect to Bethesda games. In real world terms, it's a site dedicated to publishing professional blogs and announcements on Bethesda titles. The site has launched with a strong selection of articles so far, and I hope Bethesda keeps it going.

Although Bethesda already made its major announcements during the opening ceremony, we still have more QuakeCon news to come. Check back this weekend for our impressions of the Fallout 4, Doom, and Elder Scrolls Online panels from QuakeCon 2015!

Follow me on Twitter @PaulRAcevedo for QuakeCon and more gaming related tweets. If you're attending the convention in Dallas (remember, it's free), be sure to tweet and let me know!

Related: Our full DOOM Eternal Xbox One review

Paul Acevedo

Paul Acevedo is the Games Editor at Windows Central. A lifelong gamer, he has written about videogames for over 15 years and reviewed over 350 games for our site. Follow him on Twitter @PaulRAcevedo. Don’t hate. Appreciate!