Raven Software

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Raven Software is a computer game software developer based in Madison, Wisconsin. The company was founded in 1990 by brothers Brian and Steve Raffel. The company formed with five men, one computer, a basement and a vision of creating a role-playing game for the Amiga computer platform.

Raven has a history of working with id Software, the latest such project being Quake 4, which was released on October 17, 2005 for PC, and November 22 for Xbox 360. During his tenure at id, John Romero was the primary link between the two companies. Following ZeniMax Media's acquisition of id Software, further partnerships ceased.

Since id's acquisition by ZeniMax Media, the Heretic and Hexen brands appear to remain with Activision and Raven, rather than id, although this appears to only apply to new products created within those brands (or new ports of the original products); id still has distribution rights over the original releases of 3 of the 4 games in those series (sans Heretic II, which id did not co-publish originally), and in fact publishes them on Steam.

In 1997, Raven Software joined forces with Activision in a publishing deal to combine Activision's publishing and distribution resources with Raven Software's development team. The same year, six of Raven's developers left to create Human Head Studios: Chris Rhinehart, Paul MacArthur, Shane Gurno, Ben Gokey, James Sumwalt, and Ted Halsted.

As of October 13, 2023, Raven Software's parent company Activision was purchased by Microsoft for US $68.7 billion, bringing Raven Software under the same ownership as id Software.[1]


Raven Software developed two Doom engine games, and two Doom 3 engine games:

Raven Software also created Shadowcaster using a post-Wolfenstein 3D, but pre-Doom engine created by John Carmack, the sequel for Hexen (Hexen II) using the Quake engine, and the sequel for Heretic (Heretic II) using the Quake II engine. Other games released by Raven include the Soldier of Fortune and its sequel, Star Trek: Voyager – Elite Force, Star Wars Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast, Singularity and others. Raven also worked on the Xbox port of Doom 3.

External links[edit]



  1. Welsh, Oli (13 October 2023). "21 months later, Microsoft finally owns Activision Blizzard." Polygon. Retrieved 13 October 2023.

Raven Software
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id Software
Doom era
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Doom 3 era
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ZeniMax era
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