First-person shooter games have been around for a long time, and some of them can still be played today.
The first-person shooter type is probably the most well-known in gaming. In fact, the term “first-person shooter” is often used to refer to all video games. And for good reason: first-person shooters are action-packed, exciting, and usually have a story to tie everything together.
In the past, games weren’t as linear as they are now. Besides point-and-click adventure games, which follow a plot, narrative games weren’t very common. Even though niche games like Maze War and first-person shooters were being tried out in the 1970s, they didn’t really take off until the 1990s, when iD Software made some great new games. Also, not many first-person shooter games from before 1991 can be played on current computers. You can play all of these games on Steam or GOG.
Catacomb 3D (1991)
Catacomb 3D was iD Software’s first first-person shooter. It was made possible by the technical skills of John Carmack and the work of Co-Founders John Romero, Tom Hall, and Adrian Carmack. For people interested in gaming history, it’s fun, but as a game that came before the probably better DOOM, it’s more of an oddity than a masterpiece.
This game was one of the first to use “raycasting” in video games. It took place in a dark fantasy world and had players cast magic with fully animated hands.Catacomb 3D was very important because it could render the world based on the camera instead of displaying the whole level at once. This made it possible for levels to be bigger and greatly improved efficiency.
Wolfenstein 3D (1992)
As a player in this fast-paced, violent shooter, you have to kill Nazis during WWII and fight your way out of a Nazi prison’s many mazes. This vague but effective story theme went well with iD Software’s ground-breaking technology and new ways of playing, which were built on Catacomb 3D.
Wolfenstein 3D was one of the most important first-person shooter games of its time. Its episodic structure, wide range of weapons and foes, and intense, visceral combat made it an instant hit that set the tone for future iD Software games.
DOOM is one of the most renowned and well-known games of all time. Some might even say that it was the start of modern gaming, paving the way for the many games that would come after.
Thanks to John Carmack’s continued technical skills, DOOM had better lighting and more interesting geometry than iD’s earlier attempts with Wolfenstein 3D. A space marine facing endless waves of demons was a good theme and story that players could get behind. The fast-paced gameplay was fueled by an iconic soundtrack.
System Shock (1994)
System Shock was a groundbreaking first-person shooter game with a strong story and immersive gameplay that supported player agency and freedom. It is widely thought to be one of the first and best immersive simulations of all time.
System Shock isn’t very linear, so players can easily move around the space station while trying to stop an AI that has gone bad. Other games on this list, like DOOM, are easier to get into than System Shock because of its more complicated design and gameplay. However, the new “Enhanced Edition” makes it easier to enjoy. A new version of the game came out in 2023 for people who want a more current experience.
Star Wars: Dark Forces (1995)
Video games have been based on the Star Wars franchise for a long time, but Star Wars: Dark Forces is probably one of the best. It’s a good first-person shooter with well-detailed environments and characters, and it has a classic Star Wars story that fits with the series’s themes and universe.
Star Wars: Dark Forces doesn’t have a save system. Instead, players have to complete tasks all at once using their limited number of lives. This might not be for everyone, but the game’s dedication to the Star Wars franchise, great support for fans, and good first-person shooter gameplay more than make up for it.
In 1996, Quake pushed the limits of current hardware with its detailed textures and geometry, excessive gore in the form of “gibs” (blood and guts flying out of enemies), and even 3D models for the weapons and enemies. It is thought to be one of the most important first-person shooter games of all time.
One of the things you could do in Quake was jump and “rocket jump” over bodies of water.Quake would have many follow-up games, and it would finally pave the way for competitive multiplayer gaming. Besides that, Quake is often used as the basis for new old games like DUSK, and it’s still a fun and well-made game that you should play today.
This gruesome Lovecraftian horror first-person shooter has a great mood and a lot of scary, highly detailed creatures. People who play Blood take on the role of the crazy and violent Caleb and have to kill cultists and monsters with a notoriously creative arsenal of weapons.
Even though Blood is tough and cruel, it’s still one of the best “boomer shooters” of all time and a great first-person shooter that you should play. There are also a lot of funny pop culture references in the game, and Stephan Weyte does a great job as the evil main character’s voice actor. In 2019, a better version of the game called Blood Fresh Supply came out.
In Valve’s famous Half-Life, players took control of scientist Gordon Freeman and had to help him deal with an outbreak of horrible creatures in a lab. The game was one of the first to use a linear storyline and visual storytelling.
Half-Life still works well on current hardware, and the way it told its story and structured its gameplay makes it one of the most important first-person shooter games ever made. The sound design is also great, the AI is good, and there is some light exploration in the game, mostly in the bigger levels. However, the most important thing to say is that Slope Game may be the game that made storylines famous in video games.
SWAT 3 (1999)
Police Quest: SWAT games were isometric, 2D real-time tactics games. SWAT 3 added 3D settings and characters, as well as first-person view, controls, and FPS mechanics. This made a huge difference in how the game was played. It added more of a “boots-on-the-ground” feel to the series, making it rougher and more engaging than the others.
Another point of view is that SWAT 3’s focus on realism, squad orders, and easy-to-use controls had a big impact on later tactical shooters. However, the original Rainbow Six games should not be ignored. But games like SWAT 3 don’t come out very often these days. This makes it (and its respected sequel, SWAT 4) a worthwhile game to play even now, since there aren’t many other options besides the dark and gritty FPS Ready Or Not. While the game did come out in 1999, the more popular “Game Of The Year Edition” didn’t come out until 2001.
Soldier Of Fortune (2000)
It was made by Raven Software, which is better known for making Call of Duty games. Soldier of Fortune, on the other hand, was a good and unique addition to the huge number of first-person shooter games that were out at the end of the 1990s and beginning of the 2000s.
For its time, Soldier of Fortune was known for having very detailed graphics. It also had a character “gibbing” and damage system that let players do different kinds of damage to enemies depending on where they were hit, which is something that current players often take for granted.