< Manual | Redirected from Runes

370pages on
this wiki

There are many different items you can find around the arena, and you may find them very useful.

Some kinds of items are dropped when the caracter owning them dies. In base game you cannot drop any item you have, unless you die, but some mods may include additional commands to drop some kind of item.

Most items in OpenArena come from Quake III Arena, plus some which come from Team Arena and are not available in most old mods.

Tip: learning where the items and the weapons will spawn, and the right timings to grab them before your oppents do it, is an important technique (in this case, tactic) known as control (item control, resource control).

Note: if you are searching info about the weapons in the game, please read Manual/Weapons. For other things in the maps that you can interact with (flags, obelisks, bouncepads, doors, lava, etc.), please read Manual/Map elements.

Health bonusesEdit

When your health reaches 0, your character will die. You will usually enter a match with a health value of 125, it it will slowly go down to 100. If you get bonuses and you health goes over 100, it will slowly go down to 100 again. If you set an handicap, your maximum health level will be lower. Some gametypes and special game options manage the health differently.
Health pickups respawn after 35 seconds. The mapper can change this.

Green healthEdit

  • Green health bonus (a.k.a. "5 health", "+5" or "small health") : gives you 5 health points, even beyond the value of 100 (up to 200).

Yellow healthEdit

  • Yellow health bonus (a.k.a. "25 health", "+25" or "health"): gives you 25 health points, up to the maximum of 100.

Gold healthEdit

  • Gold health bonus (a.k.a. "50 health", "+50" or "large health"): gives you 50 health points, up to the maximum of 100. With cg_simpleItems 1 it is a red plus symbol.


  • Megahealth (a.k.a. "blue health bonus", "mega", "+100 health" or "+100"): gives you 100 health points, up to 200.

Armor bonusesEdit

You will usually enter the game with no armor. If your armor gets over 100, it will slowly go down to 100. If you set an handicap, your maximum armor level will be lower. Some gametypes and special game options manage the armor differently.
Armor pickups respawn after 25 seconds. The mapper can change this.

If you have enough armor, it does absorb 66% of the damage you get, while the remaining 34% affects your health. When you run out of armor points, all the remaining damage directly affects your health. If your health reaches 0, not counting how much armor you still have, your character dies.

Armor shardEdit

Greenshard Armor shard (green shard): gives you 5 armor points, even beyond the value of 100 (up to 200).

Combat armorEdit

Yellowarmor Combat armor (yellow armor), also known simply as armor: gives you 50 armor points, up to 200.

Heavy armorEdit

Redarmor Heavy armor (red armor), also known as body armor: gives you 100 armor points, up to 200.


These are items that are immediately effective when you grab them, and their effect is limited in time (a timer appear on the bottom right corner of the screen). These powerups usually last for 30 seconds (but the map creator can change their duration); if the player that holds the powerup becomes killed, it will be dropped and another player may take it and use it for its remaining time. It is possible to have more of them at the same time; if a player gets two of the same kind before the first one expired, the total duration of the second one will be added to the residual time of the first one.
Power-ups respawn after 2 minutes. The mapper can change this. After a gamestart power-ups appear sometime between 0:30 and 1:00 for the first time.

Battle suitEdit

  • Battle suit (sometimes also known as Environment suit): complete protection from drowning, lava, slime, splash damage from weapons (e.g. you may step over proximity mines without fear) and normal falling damage. Also cuts normal damage in half. It allows you to perform rocket jumps without getting damage. If you encounter a player that holds it, remember that the usual tactic of firing rockets at his feet will not work at all, unless you get a direct hit. Its user is surrounded by a yellow/orange glow.


  • Flight: a flight pack that allows the carrier to fly. You cannot gain speed by strafejumping while carrying it, and jump-pads do not "push" you. By default this item lasts for 60 seconds.


  • Speed (also known as Haste): increases your movement speed and fire rate by 30%. While running with it, you leave a trail of small dust clouds behind you.


  • Invisibility: makes you almost completely invisible, thus it will be difficult for other players to see and aim at you. If you get both this and quad damage powerup, the blue light caused by quad will still be visible on the ground. Speed powerup dust clouds will still be visible, too.
    Starting with OpenArena 0.8.8, an optional dmflags value allows to make the model of the player holding the item totally invisible, instead of almost invisibile as usual.

Quad damageEdit

  • Quad damage (quad for short): the damage caused by your weapons (including to yourself, be careful!) will be multiplied (by 3 by default, customizable with \g_quadfactor variable).[1] Any player holding it becomes very dangerous. Its user is surrounded by a blue glow (red glow if the player is part of the red team), plus it emits a blue light visible on the ground under him.


  • Regeneration: your health will slowly and automatically regenerate, up to 200. While holding it, you will slowly "blink" with a red glow appearing for a while around you.

Holdable itemsEdit

Also called "portable items", "carried items" or "useable items", you can hold only one of them at once. After you get one, you will activate it by pressing a specific key (usually, ENTER; custominzable from Setup -> Controls -> Misc menu).
Holdable items respawn after one minute. The mapper can change this.


  • Medkit, or Portable medkit: when activated, it will immediately bring your health to 125.[2] If your health is already higher than the value medkit would give you, it is not possible to activate the item. If you are equipped with the "guard" rune, medkit gets boosted: in that case, medkit would bring your health up to 225 HP!

Personal teleporterEdit

  • Personal teleporter: when activated, it will immediately transport you to a random spawnpoint somewhere in the arena. It can be used as an emergency escape device. If you were carrying a flag, you will lose it.


  • Kamikaze: when activated, your character will suicide with a big explosion, killing himself and probably the enemies in the area. If a player dies while holding the kamikaze without activating it and the body is still intact, an icon will appear above the corpse and if the corpse is not "gibbed" (reduced into pieces) within 3 seconds, the explosion will be triggered.[3] The item ignores the friendly fire settings and will damage allies too. The shock can be felt by anyone in the arena (movement is affected, screen shakes). This item comes from Team Arena.


  • Invulnerability: when activated, an energy shield will surround the user, that will not be able to move (including falling or being pushed: the energy sphere may float mid-air, where it has been activated; be aware that momentum is not kept, and thus you will fall vertically when the energy sphere disappears) until its effect disappears; he can however look around. The effect lasts about 10 seconds. He will be able to shoot from inside to outside the shield, while the other players shots (except proximity mines) will not be able to penetrate it and will be reflected away. A single proximity mine entering the sphere (his own do not count) would kill the invulnerability user, that would explode in a bubble of blood (also known as "the juiced effect"). OpenArena versions up to 0.8.5 lacked the 3D model and all graphic effects for the item, that is completely working in 0.8.8 instead. This item comes from Team Arena.


"Runes", also known as "Team Power-ups", "Permanent Power-ups", "Persistent Power-ups" or "Permanent runes", are special items that were first introduced in Quake III: Team Arena (thus, are not supported in most other old mods designed for Q3).

They are "permanent" because, after you get one, you will have it until you die. They are "team" because usually you can get only the ones dedicated to your team (usually, those you find in your own base), but this depends from the map creator (you can take a look here, here and here). A player can have only one of them at once, and to have more players with the same rune at the same time, there must be more spawn points for it.

In the "base" OpenArena, they are disabled by default, but you can enable them, if you wish, using the g_runes variable (0=disabled, 1=enabled). They are always used instead in The Mission Pack mod (at the time of this writing, the one you find bundled with OpenArena 0.8.8). G_runes variable has been added by OpenArena 0.8.5: up to OpenArena 0.8.1, runes were never shown in baseoa (the main game), but in Missionpack and Team Arena mods only (mods based upon OA 0.8.5 and later gamecode, instead, should follow your g_runes value).

"Ammo regen" is thought for players defending the base, while "Scout" and "Guard" are for players attacking the enemy base and "Doubler" is good for both attack and defense. Anyway, you can use them the way you prefer.

Since the only way to release one of these permanent powerups is to die, one may have to ask a team-mate to commit suicide (using \kill command or in some other way), in order to let another player get that specific rune from its spawning point.

Before picking them up, they are easily identified due to appearing as floating alphabet letters. When a player holds one, a "text belt" turns around him (he's surrounded by the name of his rune): reading the text is not so easy during a gunfight, so it's advisable to learn each rune distinctive color, to quickly understand which one your opponent is wearing.

Your HUD shows the letter of the rune you are holding, if you have one. Team overlay feature also indicates runes your team-mates are equipped with.


  • Doubler, identified by a "D", doubles the damage caused by your weapons (including self damage). Absolutely devastating if used together with quad damage. Color: crimson (red)/pink.

Ammo regenEdit

  • Ammo regen, identified by a "A", automatically regenerates your ammo for the weapons you have, up to a certain level for each weapon. And it increases the fire-rate a bit (regeneration rate is slower than fire rate). Color: orange/yellow.


  • Scout, identified by a "S", increases movement[4] and firing speed, but prevents you from wearing any armor. Color: "icy" light blue/light green.


  • Guard, identified by a "G", instantly gives you 200 health and 200 armor, and then automatically regenerates your health, slowly up to 200. Your armor level will not go slowly down to 100 as usual. When having "guard" rune, using portable medkit would bring your health up to 225! Color: blue/purple (violet).

Other itemsEdit

There are some more items you can pick-up.

  • Weapons, obviously. Please read Manual/Weapons for info about them. You can also pickup the weapon lost by a killed character.
  • Ammo boxes. Useless if you don't have the corresponding weapon yet, but very useful to do not run out of ammo.
  • Gametype-related items. In some particular gametypes, you will have to transport flags or skulls: please read Manual/Map elements#Gametype-related items for more info.


  1. Why a "quad" name with a "triple" damage, you ask? Well, you have to consider that "quad damage" was a distinctive powerup for the Quake game series (the symbol of the powerup, in those games, was a stylized "Q", derived from the symbol that identified the whole game); Quake 1 and Quake 2 were primary "campaign" single-player games againts quantities of monsters (where the firepower is never enough, and x4 damage was good); for Quake 3, being a deathmatch-based game, iD Software chose to balance things changing damage to x3, but keeping the distincitive name, even if a bit misleading. In OpenArena, its symbol is no more a "Q", but the name is still the same for compatibility reasons. G_quadfactor holds fractonary values (e.g. setting it to 1.5 will cause "quad damage" user to make only 1.5 times normal damage). G_quadfactor should be kept to "sane" values: excessive values (anything above 6, maybe?) may make the player really too powerful, while fractions below 1 (e.g. 0.5) would make the "quad damage" player cause less damage than standard players (and negative values would even cause weird knockback effects).
  2. If you are using handicap, the actual value will be lower.
  3. If the server has got /com_blood 0 (default value is 1), it is not possible to gip corpses, thus it is not possible to prevent the Kamikaze explosion. See also Manual/Graphic options#Blood and gibs.
  4. Even faster than Speed powerup. Having both "Speed" and "Scout" at the same time does not further accelerate your moving speed than the Scout speed.

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit

Around Wikia's network

Random Wiki