Quake 3 Engine Game Data
4.0 | 81 Votes
What is a PK3 file?
A PK3 file is a game data archive used by Quake 3 or another id Tech 3 video game. It may contain game maps, textures, audio files, or other game data. PK3 files are renamed .ZIP files, so you can extract their contents with any Zip-decompression utility.
Quake III Arena, also known as Quake 3, was the third entry in id Software's popular Quake series. id Software developed Quake 3 using the id Tech 3 game engine. Between 1999 and 2010, various developers developed several other games using id Tech 3, including:
- Return to Castle Wolfenstein
- Medal of Honor: Allied Assault
- Star Wars Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast
- Call of Duty
- James Bond 007: Everything or Nothing
All games developed using id Tech 3 store various game data in PK3 files. Additionally, modders may distribute mods for id Tech 3 games as PK3 files. To use a mod saved as a PK3 file with an id Tech 3 game, you must place the PK3 file in the appropriate game subdirectory, which varies from game to game. (For Quake 3, this directory is quake3/baseq3).
How to open a PK3 file
If you want to view or edit a PK3 file's contents, the easiest way to do so is to open the file in SLADE, an editor for Quake and id Tech engine games. SLADE will list your PK3 file's contents and allow you to preview and edit those contents in-app.
However, because PK3 files are simply renamed ZIP files, you can also extract a PK3 file's contents by:
Programs that open or reference PK3 files
4.2 | 21 Votes
PK3 files are primarily used by ZDoom, an application used for running older games such as Doom, Heretic, and Hexen. However, they may also be used by Sonic Robo Blast 2 (SRB2), a fan-made, open-source Sonic the Hedgehog game.
SRB2 began using PK3 files in version 2.2, replacing .SRB files to store game resources. SRB2 also utilizes PK3 files to store game add-ons, along with Doom WAD files.
Common PK3 Filenames
srb2.pk3 - The name of the main resource archive used by Sonic Robo Blast 2 (version 2.2 and later).
How to open a PK3 file
Various games, such as ZDoom, GZDoom, and Sonic Robo Blast 2 support PK3 files.
If you are a game modder looking to edit the content in the PK3 file, you can use SLADE, a free utility for Windows, macOS, and Linux.
Since PK3 files are Zip-compressed, you can unpackage and access the resources in the files with Zip utility, such as Microsoft File Explorer (Windows), Corel WinZip (Windows), Apple Archive Utility (macOS), and PeaZip (multiplatform).