The Longest Yard has been a fan favourite since it's first release as a part of Q3Test and the Quake III Arena Demo, and enjoys continued popularity in Quake Live.
The level consists of a series of wide platforms across three levels suspended in space, a small sniper's post accessible only by bounce pads and another high above the main structure containing a Quad Damage and a teleporter back to the main structure. There are a further two teleporters on the the first level of the arena which lead back to the red armour, as does the first one near the Quad.
The single-player campaign squares you off against Major, Sorlag and Doom in this arena, but it is one of the easiest to master, serving as a good level to introduce gamers to air control and working with bounce pads, both necessary for survival and in most of the arenas in Quake III. As with the other levels in tier six, Q3DM17 is suspended in space, and falling off the platforms leads to certain death.
As all three teleporters lead to the same destination, it becomes a prime target of easy prediction for snipers wishing to pick someone off who has just zoned in and is still getting their bearings, but holding any of the defence platforms is not easy, they offer little cover and skilled opponents will counter any camping swiftly.
The Quad platform can become an important vantage point in team games, and can be defended easily as it's only access point is via the bounce pads. Anyone launching themselves toward it can easily be knocked out into empty space with a few well placed railgun slugs.
The lowest level of the arena is light on guns and ammo, but contains two gold healths at the far corners of it's platform. Enemies running towards these make for easy targets however, as there's quite a distance to move and anyone making that run is bound to be low on health. The two acceleration pads on the second level platforms often form a jousting scenario wherein players bounce backwards and forth in continued attacks, and in team games they serve as the most natural gathering points.
The upper platforms of the main section and the railgun / quad platforms are the keys to control here, especially in free for alls and team games, where you can easily rack up a large number of frags with either the shotgun, railgun or rocket launcher. By contrast the other sections of the level tend to be more frantic and harder to take and hold for any length of time.
DM17 is probably the most popular of the space arenas, but doesn't offer as many strategic opportunities as later ones like Space Chamber.
There are no secrets in this level.
Opponents: Major, Sorlag, Doom.
Weapons: Shotgun, Rocket Launcher, Railgun.
Power-ups: Quad Damage, Megahealth.
Frag Limit: 20.