Landmark Games...What makes em that way?

Discussion in 'Gaming' started by Kraig Lang, Oct 13, 2003.

  1. Kraig Lang

    Kraig Lang Stunt Coordinator

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    So I got into a really interesting discussion the other day with a friend of mine about games (PC, Console, any and all) and we were trying to trace the landmark games that we remembered. The main issue was we couldn't agree on the terms of the criteria.

    For example, does popularity fit into rating a landmark game? Playability? Technology? Definitely originality.

    So what are the truly landmark games?

    Here's what I think:
    Myst - Wasn't it the first CD-Rom game that brought PC gaming into the main stream?
    Wolfentstein - The Grand Daddy of all things FPS
    Pong - It was first
    Tetris - Wasn't Tetris really the first Puzzle game to completely and totally mesmerize the general populous.
    Zork - Role Playing Masterpiece
    Sim City

    How about Mario Bros 2 or was that just a rehash of a previous side scroller?

    There are others but probably not landmarks. What about Wing Commander, Ultima, Pacman, (or newer) Warcraft, Tomb Raider, Final Fantasy VII, (or even newer still) Metroid, Halo, Half-Life, Zelda,...etc.

    I'm noticing these are all fairly old. When would you say was the last true landmark game and why?

    I thought this would be an interesting discussion.
     
  2. John_Berger

    John_Berger Cinematographer

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    If we're to include playability, technology and originality, my top vote is for "Magic Carpet" from now defunct Bullfrog.

    Even in the days of the 486 this game offered 100% truly deformable terrain (some weapons created canyons or volcanos that formed in front of your eyes), land scorching, gorgeous atmosphere and environment, and total replayability. It was also 100% original. Never had a game of that design been created before.

    To enhance the game, it also included a red/blue anaglyph 3D function which worked very well and a gag "Magic Eye" 3D engine. Yes, the Magic Eye function honestly worked rather well once you got your eyes locked into the correct focus! I've never seen any game that could be played in two different true 3D (as opposed to the fake 3D of almost all FPS games) throughout the game.

    I wish that EA would allow the creation of a new Magic Carpet. The premise and environment of the first game with the incredible power of modern video cards could create a first person action/flight game of unprecendented fun and popularity.

    At the very least I wish that they would recreate the code to make it playable on modern systems. I'm sure that it would be very popular once again.
     
  3. Todd Terwilliger

    Todd Terwilliger Screenwriter

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    I'm not sure I'd put Magic Carpet at the very top of the heap but I agree with everything said about it - an awesome, truly innovative game.

    A couple more games that deserve some attention:
    Civ 2
    The Ultima series, particularly Ultima IV
    Legend of Zelda
    Super Mario Bros.
    Street Fighter 2
    The Final Fantasy series
    Doom
     
  4. JayV

    JayV Supporting Actor

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    What about Populous? Wasn't that the harbinger of real-time strategy?

    And wasn't Doom the first networkable FPS, allowing players to play on their own PC in the same environment?

    -j
     
  5. Kraig Lang

    Kraig Lang Stunt Coordinator

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    I forgot about Populous. That was a great game. Another one that comes to mind was Lemmings.

    Now that I think about it, I'd probably have to put the Hasbro Football Electronic game in the list as granddaddy to all sports games.

    What artificial intelligence. Would Black and White be considered landmark for the learning capability?
     
  6. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    I think a landmark game is a game that redefines a concept or creates one altogether. Mario 64 defined what a 3-D platforming game should be like, and to this day plays better than some of the more recent ones. FF7 did the same for 3-D RPGs.

    It's not so much in doing something as it is in doing it well that makes a game great. Creating a new idea or refining it to perfection in the process makes it a landmark game.
     

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