10 Classic FPS games that have been the pride and joy of PC gamers

First person shooters have been the pride and joy of PC gamers ever since Wolfenstein 3-D was available in floppy disks. The FPS genre survived an attack on it by clueless politicians and managed to come back stronger than ever. Here are ten of the classic FPS titles that helped to define the genre as we know it today.

by on 3rd Jan, 2011

I often look back at my childhood and think about the games that defined it. Aside from the hundreds of hours I spent playing games like X-Com and Monkey Island 2, the games I remember the most are the old FPS games. This article is reflection of the first person shooters that lead up to today's Calls of Duty, Killzones and Halos. 

Wolfenstein 3D

Wolfenstein 3D

Wolfenstein 3D is the game that started it all. It may not be the most popular FPS, but it was a historic milestone for the genre. Developed by a little known studio called id Software, Wolfenstein 3D was a game that singlehandedly pioneered the first person shooter. 

The premise was simple--you're a Polish-American prisoner of war who breaks out of a German prison called Wolfenstein, leaving hundreds of dead Nazis in your wake. Eventually, you go on to battle Adolf Hitler (who happens to be in a robot suit) to bring an end to the second world war. 

It's crazy, but Wolfenstein 3D epitomizes the early days of gaming. 

Doom & Doom II

DOOM

Although there were a number of games between the release of Wolfenstein 3D and Doom, Doom was the first to become a household name, and not just in the homes of gamers. I recall hearing the game referenced by Fox Mulder in an early X-Files episode. The game was even given an homage in one of its later episodes which had a Chinese character who resembled pro-gamer Thresh. 

In Doom, you play a nameless Space Marine who wakes up aboard a space station orbiting Mars's moon of Deimos, where all your fellow soldiers have turned into undead, gun-wielding monstrosities. Demons, too, have invaded the base. In typical space marine fashion, you must take the fight to them and find a way to get back to Earth. 

In the second game, Doom II: Hell on Earth, it would appear that your descent to the planet is days late, as the demons who first appeared in space have since invaded earth. To make things personal, they even killed your pet rabbit. The only thing you can do is answer their actions with bullets. Lots of them. 

Hexen II

hexen II

Not to be confused with "hexane" (not that you would do that, but Apple's autocorrect certainly did), Hexen II was the third game in the Heretic/Hexen series by Raven Software. Developed on id Software's Quake engine, Hexen II allowed you to play four distinct classes (Paladin, Crusader, Assassin, Necromancer). It even featured a rudimentary RPG system in a medieval fantasy world. 

The best part about the game was its online mode, called HexenWorld (like QuakeWorld) which featured something called Siege, a game where two opposing teams filled with different classes took on the role of attackers or defenders of a keep. It was a lot like the original TeamFortress or Onslaught mode in the Battlefield games. 


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