FPS stands for First Person Shooter and is one of the most popular genres of gaming today. The concept of an FPS is to shoot and shoot some more along with the customary close-quarters combat. This all happens in the first-person view and the action all takes place in either a fast-paced explosive environment or something more subtle. FPS back in the early and late ’90s was just an ordinary genre. There were only a few games in the genre that have made their mark. Those games have paved the way for the genre to be one of the most successful today. Granted the genre exploded today but it should be noted that if it wasn’t for the earliest games, the FPS genre today wouldn’t be where it’s at.
Counter-Strike was released back in 1999 and was a modification of the classic Half-Life. Counter-Strike was one of the first FPS games that incorporated the aspect of team play and cooperation. Players chose from either the Terrorist or Counter-Terrorist teams to incorporate a full game. The classic objective was to have the most number of team wins after a time limit or until the players get bored. There were some maps that needed different objectives like the Counter-Terrorists rescuing hostages or disarming a bomb.
The game was played through a Local Area Network connection back in the day but now there are various sequels to the game. The online connectivity of today’s games allows the Counter-Strike sequels to connect online allowing players from around the world to play against each other.
Half-Life was released in 1998 and was the progenitor of Counter-Strike as it was a modification of the game. Half-Life unlike Counter-Strike was focused on two aspects and they were single and multiplayer games. Single Player mode allows the player to play the campaign or story mode. The story mode was something that helped make Half-Life a good game. The story was about an alien infestation which left the players the instinct to survive the outbreak.
Multiplayer was something that also made the game good. There were various modes that allowed players to enjoy such as team play but the free for was where the fun was at. There were no alliances and you could pretty much kill anyone you want along with an arsenal of high-tech science fiction weapons.
3. Quake 3
Quake 1 was released back in 1996 and is one of the most successful FPS franchises with 4 games under its name. Quake 3 is considered to be the best in the series as it is still being played in world tournaments even to this day. Quake 3 also known as Quake 3 Arena is a game that features single and multiplayer gameplay. Single-player is good and fine but the multiplayer aspect is what really pumps up everyone. There are also various game modes available for multiplayer.
The Melee mode is the classic free for all style where it’s every man for himself where everyone races to have the high score after a time or score limit. Capture the Flag is another mode that incorporates team play and is usually the mode popular for tournaments and competitions. Quake 3 also features an arsenal of out-of-this-world weapons and power-ups.
4. Wolfenstein 3D
Wolfenstein 3D was released for the PC as early as 1992. It was one of the first FPS games to have a violent theme and tone to it. Wolfenstein was more immersed in single-player as multiplayer wasn’t as abundant back in the day. Wolfenstein 3D’s story takes place sometime during the Nazi Era. The player takes control of William B.J. Blazkowicz who was an American Spy with a little bit of Polish lineage in him.
He is captured and imprisoned in Castle Wolfenstein where he needs to make his way out. He battles with a series of Nazi soldiers and some make-shift monsters. The last boss is a doppelganger of Hitler himself which sparked some controversy at the time. Wolfenstein’s gameplay was as easy as shooting and survive.
Doom was made by ID who also made Wolfenstein 3D and the Quake series. Doom was released in 1993 following the success of Wolfenstein. Just like its predecessor, Doom was more into the single-player mode as the multiplayer aspect became available with its sequels. Doom had the players control an unnamed hero or as he is called by the fan base as simply “The Doom Guy” The plot involves the Doom Guy requiring escaping a scenario after a failed space exploration to Mars.
The Doom Guy realizes that he is overrun by make-shift monsters and creatures. He uses his arsenal to bust away through the horde. The game is really bloody and violent even sparking outrages back in the day. Its success did lead to multiple sequels and is considered by a lot of fans as one of the best FPS games of all time.
FPS games are undoubtedly one of the most dominant genres today. The current generation FPS games boast their graphical capabilities as well as worldwide connectivity. Regardless of the generation, FPS still remains as simple as point and shoot.
The FPS genre had a slow start back in the early ’90s but that could also be attributed to the simplicity of the technology. Single-player and Local Area Networks were the only means of enjoying the FPS genre to its full potential. There were some games that delivered but some just passed on to be dust in the wind. During the advancement of technology, FPS games have gotten better and graphical presentation was one of the least concerns. Gameplay and connectivity really uplifted the genre in the early 2000s and has now boomed to be a dominant genre in the industry. The only negativity is that today, tons of companies try to cash in on the FPS genre. There have been multiple clones and subpar FPS games just for the sake of cashing in. To be fair there are those games that are good and live up to standard while some just tend to be mediocre.