The basic gun, to which all other guns compare favorably.

Quake Manual

The pump-action Shotgun is the starting Weapon in Quake. Players always spawn in with it, 25 Shells and an Axe. Generally weaker than the other weapons, the Shotgun is nonetheless a decent default weapon which can be used to spam or to acquire a more powerful weapon. The Shotgun and Double-Barrelled Shotgun are the only hitscan weapons in the game.


Single Player

  • You'll always spawn with it at the start of every episode, with 25 Shells.
  • It can down a Grunt and Rottweiler in two shots and an Enforcer and Knight in four shots, so it's quite effective against them. Thus weapon is also useful against Scrags.
  • The Shotgun can be used as a medium-to-long range weapon when you're conserving ammo. Having a decent rate of fire and a quite tight spread, spamming it will rack up some damage on faraway enemies. This can be useful against Shamblers, if you first make sure you get in a safe distance from them. Most damage can be avoided while shooting from afar, but due to the shotgun's low damage output you will soon find yourself low on shells.
  • Shells are very plentiful in most levels, so don't worry about using them up.


  • In multiplayer, the Shotgun should only be used to take pot-shots at occupied targets while you're running to a better weapon.
  • Rushing a target with it is suicide, as they'll almost always have a better weapon. If you only have it and the Double-Barrelled Shotgun, use it as the long-range weapon, as the Double-Barrelled Shotgun ineffective past medium range.
  • While it's not powerful, it is a hitscan weapon along with the Double-Barrelled Shotgun, meaning that hits register instantly. Getting a Quad Damage can compensate for the shotgun's lack of power, and enemies swimming in water move slowly and can be reliably hit with the shotgun for more damage than on land.



  • Starting Weapon
  • Hitscan
  • Good rate of fire
  • Acceptable damage
  • Very good accuracy and tight spread, great for sniping Enemies
  • Useful for shooting Buttons to conserve more valuable Ammo
  • Can be used to conserve ammo by weakening tougher Enemies to finish them with some other weapon
  • Players may as well be tripping over Shell boxes due to how common they are
  • Can gib Zombies with Quad Damage


  • Takes a while to kill stronger Enemies
  • May start rusting from disuse when the player acquires the Double-Barrelled Shotgun

Death Messages

  • "Player" chewed on "Attacker"'s boomstick


  • As a default weapon and not a pickup, the Shotgun is one of the only two weapons in Quake that does not possess a world model (the other being the Axe).
  • Quake's shotgun model seems to be based around a Remington 870, but with a shorter barrel.
  • The "boomstick" death message is a reference to a line spoken by Ash (Evil Dead Series) in the movie Army Of Darkness to describe his Shotgun.