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A Look At Successful Game Mods

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the what-no-rocket-arena? dept.

Programming 287

Parz writes "Mods have been an important part of gaming for well over 15 years. Not only have they provided plenty of additional free gaming to players, but they've acted as a launch pad for independent and amateur programmers to show off their skills to potential employers. This Gameplayer article highlights the programmers who are doing it best, and what mods have made biggest and most enjoyable impact on gaming. The article not only provides details for each game, but also links to the downloads, and is a great resource for those interesting in getting up-to-date with this exciting scene." Obviously, this list will seem incomplete to anyone whose favorite mod was omitted. What mods contributed most to your enjoyment?

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Warcraft III (4, Interesting)

Drakin020 (980931) | more than 5 years ago | (#25473865)

I think Warcraft III was the only game that I played where I never actually played the normal game. I always had some kind of mod like Tower D, or DoTa.

Re:Warcraft III (5, Insightful)

Brian Gordon (987471) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474091)

Really. A list of history's greatest mods, and no Counter-Strike? No Team Fortress? No Ricochet?.....

Re:Warcraft III (4, Insightful)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474119)

No NES ROM hacks?! [i-mockery.com] They've been around since the late nineties.

Re:Warcraft III (4, Interesting)

KillerBob (217953) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474591)

Blocked by work firewall... but my first thought when I heard about successful mods were things like GameGenie or Gameshark....

Re:Warcraft III (1)

Creepy (93888) | more than 5 years ago | (#25475003)

No smurfs? [uic.edu]

and I mean, really - mods from the early 1990s? That's a decade late ;)

Re:Warcraft III (1, Redundant)

Jaggo (1045148) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474415)

Really. A list of history's greatest mods, and no Counter-Strike? No Team Fortress? No Ricochet?.....

+1 agree to that.

Re:Warcraft III (5, Insightful)

ProzacPatient (915544) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474743)

They must mean best current mods.
Otherwise this list would probably be very different and would include the original Counter-Strike and Team Fortress mods, amongst others.

Re:Warcraft III (2, Insightful)

bmccartney (938596) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474463)

For all those who own WC3 and don't know how to find games, log onto Battle.net then click on "Custom Games". When you join a game, you will download the map which contains all the models/graphics/sounds/game logic for a given mod. Tower Defense++ I would also recommend http://btanks.net/v2/ [btanks.net]

Re:Warcraft III (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474585)

DotA basically re-invented WC3 for Blizzard. The guys there give a lot of praise for the community. I think the DotA community is larger than the regular WC3 community.

Homeworld 2 (3, Informative)

newgalactic (840363) | more than 5 years ago | (#25473911)

I loved the PDS mod for Homeworld 2. Really enhanced the flight mechanics of some of the ships.

TWCTF (2, Informative)

mfh (56) | more than 5 years ago | (#25473915)

TWCTF [twctf.org] for the original Quake is probably the best mod of all time. Not Counterstrike, or Team Fortress (lol sorry). Not only because the inventor of the Geek Code Block [geekcode.com] had something to do with it. KTHXBYE!

Re:TWCTF (1)

UnknownSoldier (67820) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474015)

Yup agree! CTF, Thunder Walker, Team Fortress, and Mega-Team Fortress, were all great mods for Quake.

Re:TWCTF (1)

conteXXt (249905) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474219)

No love for Quake 2 mods at all eh? Loki's Minions was awesome to play. Spent at least 2000 hours playing that crack-mod.

Re:TWCTF (1)

mfh (56) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474343)

No love for Quake 2 mods at all eh? Loki's Minions was awesome to play. Spent at least 2000 hours playing that crack-mod.

It's funny you would say that considering how poorly TW2 was received for Quake 2!!! LOL

LMCTF was pretty spiffy. The first CTF of merit really since Zoid's official Q2CTF version took too long.

My all-time favourite (4, Funny)

Finallyjoined!!! (1158431) | more than 5 years ago | (#25473919)

Was "PornDoom"

Yay

Re:My all-time favourite (5, Interesting)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474341)

I'd have to put in my vote for Discovery mod [discoveryfl.com] for Freelancer. Not only does it add great features to multiplay,but it really makes the original single player game shine. If you have ever played the original Freelance,you know that battles often are a turkey shoot,either you die instantly or they do. With Discovery the battles from the very start are challenging,because the AI IMHO acts more like playing a real player. They really give you a good fight. And there are so many new things to see and do in Discovery I don't even know where to start. Really a great example IMHO of a great mod.

And this article is a good example of why I still prefer PC gaming. Thanks to modders after a game is beaten often you can go online and find so many new things to try and do with your game that IMHO it really adds value to the games that allow modding.

Re:My all-time favourite (4, Funny)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474543)

Was "PornDoom"

Look... I enjoyed blowing away that purple monstrosity as well. But I'd hardly call Barney DOOM "porn."

My favorite mod (1)

Wiarumas (919682) | more than 5 years ago | (#25473921)

My favorite mod actually introduced me to a new gaming genre that no other developer has tried yet (or at least I think - please let me know if they did). For Operation Flashpoint, there was a Planet of War (I think) mod that basically turned the (multiplayer) game into a FPS with RTS aspects. You could build fences, buildings, more units, weapon caches, etc. Also being a city builder fan, I thought it was a really nice addition to have that strategy involved in a FPS.

Re:My favorite mod (2, Informative)

thepotoo (829391) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474305)

You should RTFA, they have a mod for HL2 you might like. Also, ever heard of Savage? Or CnC Renegade? If you like free, how about Tremulous?

This subgenera has a lot of potential, and has never been fully realized, but it has been tried before.

Re:My favorite mod (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474853)

Actually there was a really good retail one many years back. I really wish I could remember the name of it. It involved the U.S. and Russia? having established bases on the moon and you were fighting over the resources or some such thing. You could control any vehicle you wanted in an fps mode as well as fly around and tell units to build defense platforms and other structures. Yes I realize that's pretty vague.

Re:My favorite mod (2, Informative)

FishAdmin (1288708) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474869)

There's also Giants: Citizen Kabuto [wikipedia.org] , which is exactly that: an action-RTS game, with an interesting story and a GREAT sense of humor! If you missed it, you can pick it up for $6.00 from Good Old Games [gog.com] .

Counter Strike (4, Interesting)

spandex_panda (1168381) | more than 5 years ago | (#25473935)

I played the original (not source) counter strike for countless hours! The source version was faithful to the original, almost exactly the same but with a couple of new guns and physics like ragdoll bodies and barrels moving with explosions! Fast frantic team based strategy shooter. Great.

Re:Counter Strike (2, Interesting)

megamerican (1073936) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474437)

I have never played through much of Half-Life, but I've spent countless hours playing Day of Defeat and Counter Strike.

The same goes for Warcraft 3. I haven't even touched the single-player part of the game and just did various mods like DoTA or some form of Tower Wars.

Re:Counter Strike (2, Interesting)

ZirbMonkey (999495) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474659)

How in the hell did they leave Counter-Strike off the list?

Not only was it the most popular mod for Half-life, but also Half-life 2. In my opinion, this is THE definitive mod that has been recognized as a game of its own. There were actually mods of CS itself. And they forgot CS from this list?

Re:Counter Strike (2, Interesting)

Miseph (979059) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474899)

In fact, last I knew CS was still the most widely played multiplayer FPS around. Leaving it off of the list is simply unfathomable to me.

So you don't have to click through 12 pages: (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25473945)

Re:So you don't have to click through 12 pages: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474009)

MOD UP! GOOD TROLL!

Flame. Sex. Obama == McCain, all the same. Don't vote.

Re:So you don't have to click through 12 pages: (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474021)

Don't click the link. I don't know what I saw (because I closed it as fast as I could), but it definitely wasn't a printable page.

One of the first, but still the best... (4, Interesting)

jejones (115979) | more than 5 years ago | (#25473955)

...the Doom (or was it Wolfenstein?) mod that let you blast Barney into oblivion.

teh hell??? (3, Interesting)

narkosys (110639) | more than 5 years ago | (#25473961)

not even a mention of one of the original FPS mods. I am talking about Team Fortress for Quake. I think, (and people can/will correct me if I am wrong), that it was one of if not the first mod out there.

it is a shame to not have mentioned the mod that started it all.

Re:teh hell??? (4, Insightful)

Sandman1971 (516283) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474033)

I agree. The lack of Team Fortress for Quake makes me feel like the article is full of fail. I'm not sure if it was the first mod (I seem to remember some Star Wars graphic mods for Warcraft 1), but I do think it was the first extremely popular mod. It was absolutely amazing.

Re:teh hell??? (2, Informative)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474203)

Team Fortress was an early mod, but it came after Three Wave CTF which added the whole concept of Capture the Flag as a game type to the FPS dictionary, and was probably the most-played mod at least in the pre-Quakeworld era. TF owes a lot to the existence of TWCTF, though on the other hand TWCTF was a partial mod and TF was a "full conversion" mod, maybe the first truly popular one. Mentioning at least one of these would seem appropriate.

Re:teh hell??? (2, Interesting)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474911)

Started it all? People have been modding games forever. The earliest I can think of is the Bards Tale, with the Bard's Tale Construction Set (1991). But I'm sure some grey-bearded gamer can beat that.

Let me see... (2, Interesting)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 5 years ago | (#25473979)

The Unreal4Ever & ChaosUT mods for the Unreal series.

The TeamBG tools & mods for Infinity Engine games (Baldur's Gate, Torment, etc) I made a few mods for these games, you can still fine them at purveyors of fine Infinity Engine mods.

More mods than I can even recount for Morrowind & to a lesser extent Oblivion.

Anything that adds content that was cut from Knights of the Old Republic II (replaying it now)

My really cool space mines for GalCiv I :D

Neverwinter Nights. nuff said.

Re:Let me see... (1)

popeye44 (929152) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474837)

The OOO mod for Oblivion made it a FAR better game than the original Oblivion. As for modding others I've played various ones since the original TF. However games designed with modding in mind take the proverbial cake. Oblivion, Morrowind, The Quake series to some extent. These folks all provided tools for the user to crack open their stuff and get at it and even patched some games to make the mods work better "desert combat comes to mind for Battlefield 1942" Sims2 and Sims1 comes to mind for user created content that went WAY beyond what the devs ever hoped you'd be able to do "not tools were included yet people made their own animations and scripted actions". People have made some quite funny hacks. One of my Fav mods was action quake 2 and then Action half-life. I believe the devs split from counter-strike way back when. I never liked CS as much as I'm not really a team oriented player.

Re:Let me see... (1)

Romanmir Cumelon (471593) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474913)

The Unreal4Ever & ChaosUT mods for the Unreal series.

Wow, I remember playing Chaos with a buddy of mine for weeks.

The only map we'd play was warehouse as there were only a couple of ways the level itself could kill you..
Load up a few player model packs, maybe some skins..

Oh, and also, you had to set the computer on variable skill. 'course, if you played long enough the computer players would Rail you as soon as any of the bounding box was "Visible" to them. made for a few minutes of cheap shots by the computer until we figured out that the computer's ability was reset if the map changed...

About the only other mod that gets any love from me every now and again is the "Alien Swarm" Mod for UT2k4. Love me some top down action.

Well, that and my own home-blend of tweaks for Sins of a Solar Empire.

Re:Let me see... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474969)

Frankly, TDD, the main TeamBG mod, was a piece of crap.

The tools helped start the community but the real tool was the Dragonlance Total Conversion Editor Pro, at least for the latter part.

The problem is that no really big mod has really been that good, even DLTC was more or less abandoned before completion.

NWN mods? Well, Darkness Over Daggerford would beat the pants off of most of the stuff there, granted, but those are few. ALFA got mentioned, even if misspelled, but I'm not a fan.

12 half empty pages WTF! Text follows (5, Informative)

splatter (39844) | more than 5 years ago | (#25473997)

Way back in the annals of gaming history - the early nineties to be precise - an incredibly important game was released on the PC. That game was iD Software's now permanently immortalised Doom. We don't have to tell you about it, you already know, but depending on just how old you are and just how much you tinker with your games you might not realise Doom possessed one of the first heavily modded game engines.

By the time Doom was released people had already dabbled in modding on earlier games like Wolfenstien 3D and A Bard's Tale with such fervour that iD co-founder Tom Hall made one of his early goals with Doom to allow user created content to be designed with as much ease as possible. At release users could alter the graphics, levels, sounds and even core design of Doom by taking to its internal 'WAD' file format with an array of MS-DOS based tools creating new, funny and downright stupid content for the 'father-figure' FPS game. Enterprising folk created new maps, new themes or even comedic endeavours like 'Mock 2: The Speed of Stupid' - a bundle of Doom maps whose designs were intentionally bizarre, boring or downright freaky.

From early forays like this an unspoken partnership was born between developers and end users that has exploded into a fiery dynamic world of user created content that takes the games we know and love, and makes them better. Counter-Strike is a case in point; a mod that turned the alien infested Half-Life into a detailed tactical shooter. It became so damned popular it overshadowed the original game engine it was built on, like the student outshining the teacher. Counter-Strike - like other big names in the modding world - only served to fan the flames.

The advantages of modding are easily spotted; the consumer gets to purchase a new game that once conquered, can be re-played in a new setting with new content or environments, while old games have their shelf life extended considerably through modding teams pushing the engine further with their own imagination and ingenuity. For the developer, the trade-off of spending time bundling good tools to expose the inner workings of its games for the modding community begets better sales of the title thanks to the attractiveness of the extra content available. And happily nestled in the middle of all this are the modders themselves, who get unprecedented exposure online to sell their own skills by building on the foundations of commercially released games.

Developers now look to the modding community for fresh talent to scoop up into professional roles and some of the best in the business have risen through the ranks from a starting point of game mods. The one downside of this gigantic orgy of creativity and content is the admittedly haphazard quality. With a few freeware tools and a decent game engine any nut and their army of trained monkeys can create and release a mod onto the market, resulting in the good stuff hidden amongst great wads of less than shining work.

That's where we come in. Gameplayer has scoured the length and breadth of the internet to find you some of the most promising game mods for some of the best games, and we're going to take you through each one. Some are new, some are old, some are finished while others are still very much a work-in-progress, but each one is well worth a look if you're on the hunt to get the most out of your games. Read on, and have your browser ready to do some serious downloading but just remember - the modding scene is big, huge in fact, so what we're showing here is just a drop in the ocean.

First Person Shooter Mods

BFWoWMod (Battlefield 2)
Complete and utter insanity often breeds excellent results, and there's no denying whoever thought up the concept of combining Blizzard's rich fantasy World of Warcraft setting with the anti-tank tomfoolery of EA's Battlefield 2 was a few elves short of an enchanted forest. The mod is an almost complete conversion of the graphics, sounds and playable classes of Battlefield 2, allowing WoW fans to take up the mantle of their favourite Azaroth character - Night Elf, Orc et al - and fight in a team based FPS setting that features well known locations stripped from WoW's own Player-versus-Player environment.

Care to try your hand at capture the flag in Warsong Gulch? Or perhaps the points driven scenario of Arathi Basin? The Battlefield 2 roots are exposed by the fact that rather than characters sporting glowing swords or hurling fireballs, the original BF2 weapons are available for each match. Could there be a sweeter sight for fans of World of Warcraft than being able to take out an undead Warlock from the other side of Stormwind with a Dragunov SVD 7.62mm sniper rifle.

Completely crazy, but with loads of potential for fans of cross genre FPS fun. While far from complete, the bfwowmod.net website indicates beta keys are available for the grabbing, so if you're keen head on over and see if you can get in on the ground floor of one of the more unusual game mods.

Project Reality (Battlefield 2)
As the name suggest, Project Reality takes the reasonably accurate game mechanics of Battlefield 2 and makes them so realistic, the only word left to describe the gameplay is unforgiving. This mod is one of the most polished and professional released on the scene, and features a complete overhaul of the in-game environment.

Gone are the friendly messages and descriptive HUD displays, replaced with longer spawn times, tweaked rate-of-fire and physics for weapons and even more authentic sounds to draw you into each match. Project Reality is not for the feint of heart, if you're not a crack online soldier you won't last very long in the maps thanks to the total focus on true skill and a move away from the more arcade aspects of BF2.

Not only has the game itself been made more realistic, but the various incarnations of the mod have managed to add new maps, new weapons and even entirely new factions to the fray. Project Reality has been runner-up twice in the mod of the year competition and has among its team folk who have served in the armed forces, lending all kinds of authentic flavour to the project. Check out Reality Mod to whet your appetite.

Stargate SG-27 (Crysis)
Stargate has become the definitive Sci-Fi series over the past few years, and the mere thought of injecting its special brand of wormhole hopping win into the gorgeous CryEngine has us - and now you - drooling all over yourselves. Or is that really just us? Anyway, while it's very early days for this mod yet, the promise has been made of a game that'll drop us into the heart of an intergalactic conflict, with the players as a part of the SG-27 special ops team sent to deal with hostile 'off world' situations.

Done right, this mod has the potential for an incredible fan base in light of the seeming inability for commercial developers to release a decent Stargate themed game, so we're keeping tabs on Stargate SG-27. There are some recent screenshots on the SG-27 site showing off weapon models and designs for the game, and if the quality of the models is anything to go by there won't be many people able to resist locking in chevron 7 and hitting up SG-27 when it's released.

Besides, it's the modified Crysis engine, even if it's crap it'll be very, very pretty crap. Did we just type that? SG-27 is also not the only Stargate mod for Crysis that's in the works, with several others - all slightly unique - under various stages of construction.

Goldeneye 00 Heaven (Crysis)
The release of Goldeneye 007 for the Nintendo 64 changed the way people viewed the console. No longer was it a games machine, but merely a vessel through which one could play 007, again and again and again. Yes, it really was that good a game, and the fact a mod team has devoted themselves to letting us relive Goldeneye all over again on top of the CryEngine is well worth mentioning.

Goldeneye 00 Heaven aims to re-create the classic gameplay of the original game in single and multiplayer, while not being shy to play around with some of the more modern advancements in game technology since the classic game's release in 1997.

There's a fair bit of flexibility intended for the final release, with options to have the in-game AI behave as closely to the original as possible, or tweaked up to be more indicative of current gaming AI. Multiple HUD styles, re-created and remixed soundtrack and cut-scenes and a whole host of old and new maps are set to make an appearance in the finished product.

Like so many other Crysis mods, everything is in its infancy, but we couldn't go without mentioning a mod that has the potential to take one of the most enjoyable games of the FPS 'old guard', give it a fresh coat of 3D paint and let it loose amongst hungry gamers. If you want to track the progress of Goldeneye 00 Heaven, feel free to bookmark the official site

Mechwarrior: Living Legends (Crysis)
Were you around to indulge in the incredible greatness that was the Mechwarrior PC games? If you weren't, you're lucky that we were so we can tell you it was a key figure in a golden era of PC gaming. While looking completely and utterly dated now, the Mechwarrior series of games was about as much fun as you could have in a simulated robotic war machine with shoulder mounted missiles.

Strangely, there's been little movement with this franchise in the last few years, despite advances in gaming tech that makes a rebirth of Mech goodness begging to be had. Once again, it's the modding world to the rescue, with the CryEngine about to become home to a 31st century Mechwarrior mod that'll take us all on a total conversion of the Crysis world into an ever-changing outdoor environment. There are promises of over 28 unique battle-mechs to pilot, advancements on the already spectacular CryEngine visuals and limitless weapon combinations all bundled up in team or competitive game modes.

Seriously, we're so sweaty just thinking about the potential behind Mechwarrior: Living Legends it's by some divine intervention that we can still keep our fingers on the keyboard. The mod is (unfortunately) nowhere near completion, but there is a whole stack of screenshots, information and even some videos to keep you interested over at the Mod Database and from all indications, there's a lot of love, patience and professionalism going into this conversion. If you've ever had a hankering to wield destruction in a really, really big robotic armour suit there's just no other mod to even consider.

Hidden Source (Half-Life 2)
A good deal of game mods are little more than skins - altering the appearance of the game - without any underlying change to the gameplay. The Hidden Source mod tosses out the standard Half-Life 2 team deathmatch multiplayer and replaces it with something far more clever and enjoyable. One player takes on the role of a near invisible killer (think Predator) while everyone else in the game is part of a high tech tactical squad designed to hunt and kill the 'Hidden'.

Whoever gets to play as the Hidden will have access to a variety of special abilities like near invisibility, increased speed and the ability to hug walls. Playing as the Hidden is massive amounts of fun as you stalk around the map picking off the tactical squad member by member, or watching them from a vantage point as they blindly try sweeping the map to find you.

It's a bit slower paced than your standard FPS fare, very much about sneaking and teamwork than running around with your trigger finger held down. If you choose to play as one of the 'I.R.I.S' team members, you'll get several funky toys to make up for your lack of genetic enhancement, with laser trip wires, motion sensors and more available to help you catch and kill the Hidden. At the end of each map, whoever actually disposes of the invisible killer actually becomes him for the next round.

The visuals are a little drab in comparison with other Half-Life 2 mods, but with a reasonable storyline attached to the whole affair and a style of gameplay that's enjoyably repeatable, Hidden Source is definitely one to get. The mod has been completed for a while now, but there are still active revisions and map additions taking place, so even if you've mucked around with Hidden Source before, check it out again.

Garry's Mod (Half-Life 2)
Not all mods need a point as such, and Garry's mod has been proving that since its inception in 2006. The team behind this little gem took the fantastic physics component of the 'Source' engine that powers Half-Life 2, removed all of the predefined gameplay constructs, and created a giant virtual 'sandbox' where users can feel free to create objects, environments and gigantic 3D messes using bits and pieces from Half-Life 2.

It's difficult to explain without encouraging you to give it a shot, but in essence Garry's mod is an excuse to have fun without any limitations. With a few clicks of the mouse add NPCs, chairs, balloons, motors or hundreds of other objects - each with accurate physics parameters - to an environment. Can you see the potential for madness and fun? We can. People are using Garry's mod to make movies, cartoons, or even to answer the age old question of what happens to 350 chairs if you stack them on top of each other and throw a grenade into the middle.

While the appeal here is certainly in the freeform randomness of it all, it speaks volumes about the versatility of Garry's mod that people are now making 'gamemode' mods for it to mix the crazy physics with defined goals and gameplay! A mod for a mod, that's head exploding material, we know. Garry's mod has a huge following on the web, with video tutorials, forums, fan sites, the works - so get your hands dirty if you own a copy of Half-Life 2.

Alien Swarm (Unreal Tournament 2004)
Old school, that's the market Alien Swarm is tapping into. Taking the Unreal UT2004 engine, a clever group of modders have created an overhead tactical shooter that involves your squad of marines - ripped straight from 'Aliens' the film - an arsenal of weaponry, and an angry alien menace. If you've ever played some of the classic 16-bit overhead shooters like 'Alien Breed' you'll know where Alien Swarm is coming from.

The simplicity of the premise results in a game that's perfectly suited to LAN environments, so if you have a few friends and some old copies of UT2004 lying around, this is the mod to install. Supporting up to 8 players in co-op mod, gamers can get their hands on mines, flamethrowers and assault rifles in their quest to rid various bases and outposts of alien infestation.

Originality is at an all-time low in Alien Swarm, but you won't care - you'll be too busy soaking up the intense fire-fights and team based play as you work your way through either single missions or the larger campaign mode. For a freebie, this mod is pure gold and guaranteed to get another few gaming hours out of your copy of UT2004 for zero cost.

Realism Mod (S.T.A.L.K.E.R)
While S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 does the rounds there's no harm in looking at the mods available for the original gritty Russian FPS. The Realism Mod - as the name suggests - takes S.T.A.L.K.E.R and makes it more realistic to play, and therefore harder. How much harder? Insanely, that's how much. Seriously, S.T.A.L.K.E.R was no walk in the park the first time around, but this little gem ripped our arms out of our sockets and beat us to death with them, before it was even installed.

The properties of most of the weapons have been tweaked, player effects like hunger have been magnified and radioactive anomalies can be completely invisible to the player's eye. S.T.A.L.K.E.R was an unforgiving environment before this mod, and now - now it's a candidate for sending people to the funny farm for sheer difficulty. If you like immense challenge in your games, and have the original Stalker floating around - we'd recommend you install, setup the mod and spend the next few days issuing blood-curdling screams of frustration at your constant death.

The only letdown is the proliferation of Russian language descriptions for weapons, and the 404 you get trying to visit the mod-makers website (rest assured though, mod portals like moddb still have the Realism mod for download).

Real-Time Strategy Mods

Half-Life 2: Wars (Half-Life 2)
This is so cool it deserves to be downloaded purely so you can say you've played it, seriously - even if RTS games aren't your thing, it's still incredible to see a team of talented chaps take the Source engine (specifically created for FPS titles) and use it to create a polished RTS title.

Playing as either the Resistance or the Combine, players take part in base building, troop positioning and map-wide shootouts with units and props from Half-Life 2. There's a great level of detail in individual troops on the battlefield thanks to the use of the actual character models from Half-Life 2 itself, and credit to the team involved for making a slick RTS interface with everything you'd expect if you're a mad keen PC strategist with a craving for loud explosions.

One of the fringe benefits of the entire thing being based on a first-person-shooter, is that the player can actually zoom right into individual battles and get that rich 'first person' level of detail, as well as zooming out to the more traditional top-down RTS view. With version 0.5 released earlier this year, Half-Life 2: Wars is just the thing to get a little more life out of your copy of Half-Life 2. Stop by the official site if you want to turn your copy of Half-Life 2 into a free RTS, or simply get a massive kick out of what creative people can do when they put their minds to it.

Star Trek: Sacrifice of Angels (Homeworld)
Yeah, we know - Homeworld is an old game, and since then there's been the far shinier and more technically up-to-date release of Homeworld 2. But this mod, dredged up from 2004, is a fantastic way to revitalise that elder statesman of space RTS titles, particularly if you enjoy the Trek universe. Sacrifice of Angels is a total conversion - giving the player two sides to choose from, one which comprises all the 'good' races from the Trek universe, the other of course - the 'bad'.

The modelling is simply superb here, even for an OpenGL title that's showing its age, the ships look great and the sampled sounds back the whole thing up nicely. Photon torpedoes sound like they're meant to, and the constant hum of warp engines can be heard as your fleet of ships passes within camera view. Sadly, there are no plans to release this mod for Homeworld 2 so to re-create your favourite Star Trek battles, Sacrifice of Angels is not easily the best.

So it might be time to go hunting for that Homeworld disc, eh? There was a Sacrifice of Angels mod released August this year to take advantage of the new 'Sins of a Solar' empire space RTS, so that's also worth checking out if Trek is your thing and you own a copy of Sins instead of Homeworld.

Mid-East Crisis 2 (Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars)
While Command & Conquer 3 was a polished RTS, some players hankered for a return to the quasi-present day units and surroundings that made C&C Generals such a popular game. Perhaps as a reflection on the political climate of the world, people were interested in playing out scenarios of terrorist insurgents, desert warfare and rolling tanks.

To this end, mod team 'Isotx' are busy working away on Mid-East Crisis 2 (no - we don't know what happened to Mid-East Crisis 1) which should give us the modern visual splendo9r of C&C 3 with more relevant faction based warfare between UN peacekeepers, IDF and the guardians of Islam. There appears to be a strong push towards close-quarters 'urban' warfare, which should give some great scope for city-based maps, lots of buildings to garrison in and dense surroundings.

The team behind this total conversion mod have a history of tinkering with the C&C series, having worked on changes to the original C&C Generals, and the Zero Hour expansion. If anyone can be trusted to breathe new life into C&C without losing the good stuff, it's these guys. Keep floating back to its site for more news on the mod and hopefully a downloadable BETA at some point.

Fall From Heaven (Civilization IV)
Civ IV isn't an RTS, being rooted firmly in turn-based mechanics, but we thought we'd include it here because there's no point making a turn based section just for one game and Civilization is quite simply the best game of its kind. The Fall from Heaven mod is a sexy dark fantasy total conversion that uses the awesome core gameplay of the Civ series to portray a world of elves, dark sorceresses and primal magic.

Everything in the engine has been painted with the fantasy brush, so you've got all kinds of bizarre fictional religions, quirky technologies and near-immortal hero units at your disposal. While Civilization IV has around eleven billion years of playing time in it anyway, Fall from Heaven is the answer to extending the life of the game even further, draping it in a gritty sword & sorcery setting where attention to detail has been made paramount.

The mod has been available for public consumption for some time now, but the developer's site indicates updates as recent as a couple of months ago - so if you invest in Fall from Heaven, expect healthy community support.

Sins of a Galactic Empire (Sins of a Solar Empire)
Sins of a Solar Empire is a strategy game so utterly enjoyable it really doesn't need any mods made for it. That being said, the community can't resist taking most space RTS games and turning them into either Star Trek or Star Wars. It's just one of those 'expected' things. Sins of a Galactic Empire seems to be one of the better mods being worked on, and despite the BETA release only having the Empire side to play with, we've been assured the rebel faction is close to completion (and judging from the available model screenshots, is looking fantastic).

The sounds from the original Star Wars films have been carefully injected into the environment, so operatic soundtracks precede screaming lasers in the heat of battle, and really, considering how cheap Sins of a Solar Empire is to purchase, you'd be crazy not to take a look at Sins of a Galactic Empire, it's free value stacked on an already bargain-priced game.

Be warned though, there's no strict following of the Star Wars canon here folks, it's purely a military strategy game that happens to use Star Wars ships, so don't go looking for a storyline involving plots within the Jedi council and the rise of the Republic. Still interested? Head here to check out Sins of a Galactic Empire.

Battle for Middle-Earth 2: Arcade Edition (Battle for Middle-Earth 2)
Do you ever get that itch when you're playing a game, just to blow all the doors open and get access to everything it has to offer? Usually that means breaking out cheat codes, but thanks to the creators of the 'Arcade Edition' of Battle for Middle-Earth 2, if you happen to be a fan of the Lord of the Rings inspired RTS, you can plug in this mod and have chaos at your fingertips.

Gone are the restrictions on good or evil races, you can now create multi-race armies of humans and elves and dwarves. Buildings have been made to auto-rebuild themselves and the super powered hero units are available from the very beginning of the game. Yes, this all sounds completely unbalanced and crazy - and that's because it is.

The Arcade Edition is for those who can't be arsed hanging around for an hour building up enough resources and technology to unlock all the cool stuff BFME2 has to offer. In addition to all the gameplay tweaks, the Arcade Edition also adds a few new units and buildings here and there, including Smaug the Dragon as a hero unit. Utterly worth the 70MB download from here.

Stargate: The War Begins (Nexus: The Jupiter Incident)
Another Stargate mod? Are we completely mad? Well, maybe a little, but let's face it, Stargate is a damn fine show with a mythos that's ripe for digital exploitation. We put this mod in the round-up because - although Nexus: TJI isn't the worlds prettiest or deepest space RTS - after watching the footage of Stargate: The War Begins in action, you just couldn't fault any part of this endeavour.

It's as though the in-game scenes are ripped from an episode of the show itself, with almost flawless re-creations of just about every fan favourite ship you can imagine, Goa'uld motherships, Asgard cruisers, even the almighty 'take no shit' Ori feature prominently among the constructible vessels. The various groups responsible for Stargate: The War Begins have also been kind enough to implement Stargate themed missions and multi-part campaigns into the mod, so not only do you get to fight within the Stargate universe, you get to do it with some sense of narrative and storyline attached.

This is just another example of how commercial developers need to wake up and realise that gamers are starved for Stargate themed titles, and if it's not provided in the commercial sector, mods are the obvious answer. Check out this location for up-to-date info.

Role Playing Game Mods

Myriad Islands (Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas)
Myriad Islands takes an 'open source' approach to modding with incredible results. The idea is simple, replace the entire map of San Andreas with a gigantic island that's populated entirely by user-generated content. The island is divided into various lots, which individual modders can request to own and then introduce characters, models and textures into the environment.

This has resulted in a monolithic content pack that brings with it the collaborative efforts of hundreds of different people albeit with mixed, often chaotic results. What makes the mod worthwhile is the sheer beauty of a completely open environment where the total sum of talent from many hundreds of people can be navigated through by players, from one end of the island to the other. Regardless of what you think of Myriad Islands or the GTA franchise, the idea of an entire environment created by a global community of artists, modelers and just plain bored people is something worth taking note of.

The entire world holds together pretty well considering it's a Frankenstein creation of so many different minds, but the Myriad Islands documentation does warn that while you'll get hours of play in the virtual world, there are oddities that can either look visually bad or cause the game engine to crash to the desktop. Head over to the official site to grab the end user files or claim your spot on the island.

Qarls Texture Pack III (Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion)
If there was an award - a glittering golden trophy - for the worlds most modded game, Oblivion would have to come close. Since release it's had so many mods, community expansions and skinned models released for it that most people aren't really sure what the original Oblivion was like, not that we're complaining. Qarls Texture pack is probably the foundation mod, the first one you should get, if you really want to unlock the potential of the engine and the title.

The pack contains an absolute bucket load of new textures for Oblivion, each one at a higher resolution and offering a more photorealistic image than the default ones, and once loaded you'll be honestly gob smacked at the difference in visuals. We're talking texture files that are three or four times the size of the originals, the one caveat being your machine really needs serious GPU grunt and memory to cope with the changes.

Many of the meshes in the game have also been re-worked, along with some of the colour and normal maps. Basically, anything that could improve the overall visual quality of Bethesda's already impressive engine has been done in this mod pack. Get it from here, apply it and drool over it.

Oblivion Online (Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion)
This was a pipedream for the original players of Oblivion: taking the rich and detailed fantasy world online. Bethesda decided - for reasons of their own - not to include a multiplayer component to its massively successful RPG, so the modding community did what they do best, and made one themselves.

Now the detail as to how all this works is a little vague from the sources we could find (at the time of writing the Oblivion Online forums were down) but from what we can tell it's just a big shared environment - no forced co-op or team versus team, just one big Elder Scrolls environment in which many players can interact while working their way through the single player quests and dungeons. Sounds pretty damned fun to us, so we're hanging on the edge of our seats for the first public BETA which is apparently just around the corner.

From the mod developers themselves we know there's support for up to 12 players initially, with more expected down the track, and apart from some synching issues across servers with characters, NPCs and bad guys, the mod looks to give gamers a new reason to get into the world of Oblivion. Get the info here.

A Land Faraway (Neverwinter Nights 2)
Neverwinter Nights games have always been completely mod-friendly. This has been reflected in the wealth of toolkits and level editors available at release for players to immediately delve into creating their own scenarios or 'modules' for NWN 1 & 2, complete with custom graphics, characters and sounds. Neverwinter Nights 1 was the role-playing fanatic's wet dream, and its sequel was the same wet dream but with far better graphics, so it's no surprise there are some fantastic modules out there for Neverwinter Nights 2 designed by people with a passion for the RPG genre.

One that stands out - head and shoulders - above the rest is 'A Land Faraway'. A community module that began forming in 2001, it has since grown to become one of the many 'persistent' worlds in the Neverwinter Nights universe. More than just an add-on scenario, 'persistent worlds' are in some ways very close to an MMO experience; a server loaded with the land faraway environment is kept constantly running for many users to connect to at the same time, allowing a shared experience and one where the timeline continues whether your character is logged on or not.

While persistent worlds are actually quite common in NWN1 and 2, few have reached the stability or maturity of A Land Faraway. With seven servers to connect to and an apparently healthy population, A Land Faraway is also populated with live GMs (Game Masters) who seek to create ad-hoc plots and campaigns to help the world seem alive to the players, something sorely lacking from big boy MMO games like World of Warcraft or Warhammer Online. There are separate Land Faraway environments for Neverwinter Nights 1 & 2, so whichever you own, stop by the official site and see if the immersive style of a persistent world module is for you.

Re:12 half empty pages WTF! Text follows (2, Interesting)

hoover (3292) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474311)

Thanks a ton for posting the textual content of the article. Before even reading / searching through it, I somehow knew in my heart that not a single racing simulation related mod would be mentioned.

No GPLEA (the folks who continue to breathe new life into "Grand Prix Legends" on an annual basis, a sim that is over a decade old), no mention of rfactor (a racing sim essentially designed to allow easy modding by the community which right now has over 500 mods and tracks, on separate counts available), heck not even a single flight sim on this list.

Well, I guess I'm just not mainstream enough anymore ;-)

Vampire Bloodlines Unofficial Patch? (4, Interesting)

thepotoo (829391) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474023)

I can't believe they left off the Unofficial Patch for Vampire the Masquerade Bloodlines.

Seriously, it is probably the most professionally done mod I've ever seen.

They took the buggy piece of crap that was vanilla Bloodlines and turned it into one of the most immersive role playing worlds I've ever seen.

You could argue that the dev team should have done this job, but I say that it's the end gameplay that counts, and this mod really delivers. Check it out. [patches-scrolls.de]

Re:Vampire Bloodlines Unofficial Patch? (4, Interesting)

Nasarius (593729) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474613)

The whole article is full of fail; half the listed mods haven't even been released yet.

But yeah, VTM: Bloodlines is pretty goddamn fantastic, and the Unofficial Patch makes it playable, though there's been some breakage in recent versions. It's unique (somehow, the vampire theme is rare in RPG format), creepy, funny, at times very scary, and just extraordinarily well-written, with a dark, gritty, very real atmosphere throughout. And I say this as someone who usually has little patience for epic stories in RPGs. Give me an engaging setting and I'll pay attention to your story.

Unfortunately, Bloodlines stops being fun about 2/3 of the way through the game. Starting with the sewers and continuing through the end game, it turns a fantastic, deep RPG into an unremarkable FPS. It's as if they suddenly fired all their writers and designers, and got some level designers well-versed in recycled FPS cliches to build the rest of the game.

Good Grief (4, Insightful)

Torinaga-Sama (189890) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474031)

I know there is some kind of page click metric that people get paid on, but honestly, would it hurt to put a list on the first page so I don't have to try to click through a site that is probably already getting hammered.

Star Wars Jedi Knight: Dark Forces II (1)

PearsSoap (1384741) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474067)

Nearly the first PC game that I played was Jedi Knight: Dark Forces II. Apart from being immensly fun on local multiplayer (over a serial cable!), it was really easy to modify. IIRC, you just had to change a value in a human-readable text file to make a weapon fire a different projectile, or have a really short reload time. This, of course, meant that a huge number of mods were released. Although I didn't develop anything particularly advanced, it was fun to disguise myself as a crate and sneak up on my brother with a blaster modified to fire force lightning.
Now that I think about it, that's probably why I started programming and web development as a hobby.

Re:Star Wars Jedi Knight: Dark Forces II (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474261)

Not to mention that people were making gmod style building weapons there FAR before tribes2 had construction mod.

Honestly this list is pathetic. it's a random collection of mods, not a list of truly revolutionary or successful mods. Where's the tribes2 mods? Where's QWTF? Threewave? Instagib? CS? TFC? DoD? Natural Selection? SvenCoop? The thousand and one UT mods?

Eh? (3, Informative)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474075)

No mention of Counter-Strike or Day of Defeat, in a collection of great mods, is shameful.

Also, the article doesn't mention Goldeneye: Source, which disappoints me. That mod has serious potential to scratch my Goldeneye itch.

Re:Eh? (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474567)

Agreed the HL engine spawned many many great mods, including CS which is probably one of the most played online games ever.

Best mod ever: nocd (5, Insightful)

bugnuts (94678) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474081)

NoCD patches are incredibly useful.

I buy software. I don't abide most of the bullshit copy protection, though. I didn't carry a CD player in my laptop, I don't like the battery drain, and I don't like having to have the disk with me. NoCD patches made such games tolerable.

What a load of crap (4, Insightful)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474101)

It states:
"This Gameplayer article highlights the programmers who are doing it best, and what mods have made biggest and most enjoyable impact on gaming."

The biggest impact on gaming when, in the last 6 months? Seriously most of those mods can't even begin to call themselves the best when compared to some of the originals done in Quake, Quake 2, Half-Life, etc.

My guess is the author is like 12 years old or something like that.

Re:What a load of crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474333)

Ecen worse. I have to admit that I only looked at the first 3 mods but two of them are not even playable right now and like 95% of all started mods will probably never be finished.

Re:What a load of crap (1)

Farmer Pete (1350093) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474459)

Any list of best mods that doesn't even include CS is for sure a load of crap. I would have added Team Fortress to the list as well (Any mod that has survived for something like 15 years deserves to be pretty high on the list, or at least ON the list)

Re:What a load of crap (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474581)

> My guess is the author is like 12 years old or something like that.

Not much younger than you, I guess?

The Dungeons of Dr Creep was a nice "mod" of The Castles of Dr Creep:
http://moon.descentforum.net/creep/

Re:What a load of crap (1)

hairykrishna (740240) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474655)

I know. What kind of 'biggest impact on gaming'/'best mods' list includes some kind of Battlefield 2 Warcraft mod and skips over Team Fortress? Desert Combat?

Alien Quake - One of The best IMO (1)

bagboy (630125) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474137)

Played it before FOX pulled the plug on the Mod. http://baron.tri6.net/alien_credit.htm [tri6.net] http://www.student.nada.kth.se/~nv91-gta/quake/ [nada.kth.se]

Re:Alien Quake - One of The best IMO (1)

Finallyjoined!!! (1158431) | more than 5 years ago | (#25475029)

Agree 100%, it was awesome. We played it endlessly on the network at work, back in the Netware days.

I'll vote warcraft III also (1)

techess (1322623) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474189)

The freedom that Blizzard gave map creators for WC3 allowed some really cool mods. You could download a map that was a truly unique game within itself. My lan party group still grabs RPG maps for WC3 for us all to get together and do a little co-op dungeon crawling. Some of the mods made the game completely unrecognizable as WC3.

The only game I found unplayable without a mod is Temple of Elemental Evil. I started playing it and I had a really good start with a party that I liked and then found a small problem. The NPC's are rabid looters. The worst part is they would loot unique items they couldn't even use. I've got no problems w/ NPC's getting a piece of the action, but them taking items they couldn't use drove me crazy.

The final straw was the NPC druid I picked up looted a set of full plate mail. The mail was too heavy for her to carry so she was encumbered (and moved terribly slow). I got her back to the city and normally once you entered a store the NPC's would sell the loot they couldn't use. She refused to sell the item and couldn't get unencumbered. I looked online and found a mod that let you modify NPC's inventory like they were a true party member. Got the armor out of her inventory and proceeded to enjoy the rest of the game.

Re:I'll vote warcraft III also (2, Interesting)

VeNoM0619 (1058216) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474299)

I believe "maps" aren't really mods, sorry.

And if you wish to take that route, then the many maps in Starcraft were the original "mods". Warcraft 3 just took most of Starcraft and made it 3D with a "hero" system. Guess that's why I never really enjoyed WC3, but loved Starcraft to death (SC2 and its now many 'expansions')

Re:I'll vote warcraft III also (2, Insightful)

KillerBob (217953) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474851)

Um... Doom predates Warcraft 3. And I was creating maps for my friends in Wolfenstein 3D before Doom was even released.

Re:I'll vote warcraft III also (1)

KillerBob (217953) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474863)

Right... proofread, post when awake... Doom predates Starcraft, too. The rest stands....

That was a horrible list. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474221)

The list only covered mods for current games and games that are hardly old. There was no mention of Counter-Strike, the mod that exploded and practically brought millions of gamers back to half-life. There was no mention of mods for games like Diablo or Diablo II. It mentioned Doom, but didn't explore any of the fantastic mods that arose. Not even similar games like Hexen or Duke Nukem. Lame list. Period.

The ZDoom rickroll mod, of course! (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474241)

ZDoom [zdoom.org] is an excellent Doom update, and, although I can't find the rickroll mod itself at the moment, check this video example out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8aJjMOy-Ops [youtube.com]

Re:The ZDoom rickroll mod, of course! (1)

rev_g33k_101 (886348) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474309)

oooh! now that looks cool

Quake Beyond Belief (1)

PhilipMatarese (609325) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474273)

As for single-player Quake mods, Beyond Belief surpassed many of the original level designs.

Rome Total Realism (2, Insightful)

glwtta (532858) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474275)

Rome Total Realism (for Rome Total War) - still the best strategy game ever made.

Not even one Total Annihilation mod mentioned? (4, Interesting)

macraig (621737) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474297)

The reviewer is obviously too young or too obsessed with the present state of modding, since not even one of the many dozens of mods and thousands of units created by fans for Total Annihilation was mentioned. It's still being actively modded now, even though the game is over ten years old and has more recent "sequels".

Total Annihilation is very likely the most heavily modded game of all time, and it wasn't even mentioned? Pffft.

Re:Not even one Total Annihilation mod mentioned? (2, Informative)

maackey (1323081) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474761)

I'm glad you mentioned it, because there is even a complete engine that was created to run Total Annihilation in fully rendered 3D, called Spring [clan-sy.com] . It has since surpassed its main goals and has become something even bigger, with many more games that have been developed (or currently being developed) including WWII based, Gundam, Star Wars, and even games based on the internal systems and parts of a computer (Kernel Panic).

It has been the only source of entertainment (besides occasional bouts of fallout) that I've had for months. If you do go check it out, and you should, the Complete Annihilation mod is in my opinion one of the very best mods available. The technical and artistic ability of the main developers and contributors is awe inspiring. There is some more information on the trac page [caspring.org] .

RTS games in general are the most heavily modded (1)

WraithCube (1391567) | more than 5 years ago | (#25475025)

The modding communities for most rts games always seem to be great as many of the games mentioned are from that genre. My favorite has been the Shockwave mod [shockwavemod.com] for C&C Generals Zero Hour which made the game into what EA should have. It was very well done for the graphics too compared to most mods I've seen.

First game I ever modded (4, Interesting)

Drooling Iguana (61479) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474301)

First game I ever modded was QBasic Gorillas. I found the variable that determined the blast radius of the bananas and increased it to ridiculous amounts, discovered that the game used colour-checking to do collision detection and gave the gorillas armoured helmets, found the palette entries and made the gorillas green, and composed my own song for the intro. That game was quite possibly the only good piece of software Microsoft ever produced.

Re:First game I ever modded (4, Funny)

BrentH (1154987) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474515)

It was also the only MS program that came with the source. ;)

Re:First game I ever modded (2, Interesting)

glwtta (532858) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474527)

That, and immortal snakes in Nibbles (or infinite lives), that takes me back to the high school computer lab.

Re:First game I ever modded (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474747)

you sir should be quoted!

Quake - Action Quake, Future vs. Fantasy (4, Interesting)

squisher (212661) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474307)

For me Quake had some of the best mods ever. For Quake I there was Future vs. Fantasy, a great mod where you could play as different characters either from the future, or from the fantasy realm.

Quake II had a great one called Action Quake, which is somewhat similar in playing-style to counterstrike. But it had nice things like if you got hit in the leg, you'd bleed, and have trouble walking, until you applied a bandage. Thery were so much fun at the time!

They stayed a lot in my mind, though lately all I've been playing is DotA... :-)

Re:Quake - Action Quake, Future vs. Fantasy (1)

pak9rabid (1011935) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474513)

Heh, I used to actually work with one of the developers of Action Quake (or so he said).

They missed WOG for HOMM3 SOD (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474353)

That add one ads a lot of cool stuff to the game.

ZeldaC (1)

PhilipMatarese (609325) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474359)

Playing ZeldaC had so many new puzzles and variations on the standard engine, it felt like playing Zelda for the first time.

It's a good demonstration of how versatile a solidly built game-engine can be.

No Desert Combat? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474373)

I'm excited for the BF:WOW Mod, but seriously, it isn't even in open beta yet.

Desert Combat (Battlefield 1942) should get a nod.

The NetworkAddon for Sim City 4 RH adds a lot of s (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474439)

The NetworkAddon for Sim City 4 RH adds a lot of stuff that should of been in the game.

I hope that CITIES XL does fully custom roads in it. As that is the biggest thing that sim city is missing.

"Recent" and not "All Time" (4, Insightful)

ChopsMIDI (613634) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474489)

It's clear that this list is a list of recent popular mods, rather than a list of the most successful and influential mods of all time, since pretty much every game listed is a rather current game, and that the submitter clearly didn't even read his own submitted article.

It even says it in the article itself:

Gameplayer has scoured the length and breadth of the internet to find you some of the most promising game mods for some of the best games, and weâ(TM)re going to take you through each one. Some are new, some are old, some are finished while others are still very much a work-in-progress

Leaving off mods like Counter Strike (hello, most played FPS ever), DotA (played more than vanilla War3), Team Fortress and Enemy Territory (both have real-game sequels), and TWCTF (which introduced CTF to FPSes) completely disqualifies it from being a serious list of the most influential mods of all time. I mean, the first mod listed, "BFWoWMod" for BF2, is still in beta.

This is akin to listing the "Most influential programmers of all time" and excluding Don Knuth while listing "that kid down the street that likes computers."

The article itself isn't half bad once you realize that it's the "Current Best Mods Available" and not "The Best Mods of All Time."

Re:"Recent" and not "All Time" (4, Insightful)

Catharsis (246331) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474811)

Actually, it's worse than that. I made the mistake of reading the whole article. Several of the mods are completely unreleased. Several are clearly poor examples of vibrant modding communities. One of them is scarcely more than a *cheat* *mod* for an RTS of little note.

This list is an utter failure and completely fails to represent many of the brilliant and creative mods out there now, let alone recognize the influence of mods on the history of game development.

I have no problem with the author. He has his opinion and is entitled to post it as he pleases, but this is pathetic content to bring to the attention of the entire Slashdotting world.

For shame, Soulskill. For shame.

(So much for my excellent karma!)

Re:"Recent" and not "All Time" (1)

KZigurs (638781) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474993)

Well, to be fair, Knuth might have some objections to being called a "computer programmer".

Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory mod (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474493)

I actually never played it without a mod, always played with mods like etpro, etpub and jaymod... i still play it today A LOT... 4 years and counting.
Best team work fps ever (for me :P)

Hidden Source? Are They Serious? (1)

Kneo24 (688412) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474501)

I mean, really, Hidden? That mod is a joke. It's not fun, period. I'd rather play Source Forts, which isn't very fun once you get past the whole "oh I can build forts" aspect of it. Hell, I'd rather play the campfest that's Insurgency, which is loathesome to say the least. Eternal Silence would have been a better pick. And all I've done so far is list other mods I can't stand to play anymore for various different reasons.

Seriously, people who write these types of articles don't play a lot of mods, and that's why they're always a failure. They pick a few with a few concepts that sound neat, play them for a total of ten minutes, and then try to write some half-hearted attempt as something that resembles an "article". I'm not saying all of these mods are terrible, I haven't played most of them, but by picking Hidden: Source, it only shows that the author has probably skipped a large portion of the mods that are better, far far better. Either better int he innovation department, or better in the gameplay department, or both.

I fear for Mods (1)

Joker1980 (891225) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474509)

in the current climate i fear for the future of mods, games publishers are already trying to destroy the aspects they dont have control over, we have seen blizzard go after glider, sony's attempts to destroy the used game market and to a certain degree your actual ownership of the game you purchased (EA im looking at you). Its only a matter of time before extending the life of a game is akin to piracy.

No Steam games? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474519)

Although they had a few Half-Life 2 metions in the article. They failed to mention the fact that Steam [steampowered.com] was made mainly for the purpose of creating and maintaining a MOD community for Half-Life.

Re:No Steam games? (1)

Nos. (179609) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474835)

As much as I love Steam, it not made mainly for the mod community. It was made as a content distribution platform.

Urban Terror (2, Informative)

LegionKK (1298769) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474523)

Clearly the most enjoyable and addictive Quake 4 mod, now a standalone. Are you having a good semester? A little too good? Then fuck it up by playing Urt 12h/day.

Best mod EVER. (1)

WeblionX (675030) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474541)

Banimod > *

Hands down.

QED.

&c.

Article is very short sided. (1)

Buzz_Litebeer (539463) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474571)

Here is my list, by significance of impact.

1. Action Quake 2 - This mod inspired the game mechanics of Counterstrike, counterstrike used to be a community based mod, and was heavily influenced by action quake2 which put real life "feal" to dieing. IE you could die in a few hits and had to hide etc... TF would have been first except that action quake 2 spawned counterstrike.

2. Team Fortress

The mother of mods to prove that total conversion mods could take a mass amount of players from the core game. As mentioned earlier CTF was important, but TeamFortress actually changed how the game was played.

Note: I only have 2. These mods were good, they were the main mods that totally gripped the community at the time.

Action Quake2! (1)

antdude (79039) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474653)

AQ2 [telefragged.com] was a big one for me during Quake 2 server. I even hosted a server ("Ant's AQ2 Movie Set") on my friend's cable modem server until it got hacked. :(

Game Genie?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474681)

What about old school nintendo and game genie? My brother and I used to spend hours seeing what mods we could hack into games without them freezing up.

Later on there was also GameShark, I think that was for N64.

Old Quake Mods - Marcher Fortress! (1)

end15 (607595) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474695)

Hi All, If there is anyone who's still looking at the Quake mods (a game I still love for pure run and gun pleasure!), please check out Marcher Fortress. This was the best of the Quake mods that I've played. http://retroquake.planetquake.gamespy.com/blog/?p=270 [gamespy.com] It has a good length, some nasty new creatures, and is plenty difficult.

DotA and Counterstrike (1)

Markimedes (1292762) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474857)

Don't know if DotA would be considered a mod or not, but it is such a heavily modified version of Warcraft III that I don't know what else to call it. Huge amounts of fun derived from that. And I didn't see Counterstrike mentioned, which I believe is the most successful mod of all time. Next to Windows Vista.

Garys mod anyone? (1)

Ieatsyou (1383005) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474865)

I looked through all these replies and didn't see garys mod! A mod that puts modding into the hands of everyday people! I've seen some of the most complex user created things using it, and some of the simplest too! I rather enjoyed it, even if it costs a bit of money.

Re:Garys mod anyone? (1)

nomessages (1160509) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474909)

Gary's Mod is in there. One of the first few mentioned, iirc.

Re:Garys mod anyone? (1)

everynerd (1252610) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474925)

RTFA

1 of 12 pages? WTF!?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474903)

WTF? I didn't RTFA because the link went to "1 of 12" pages. Again, WTF? You know, most computer mice these days have this thing called a "scroll" button. IF your mouse doesn't have scroll buttons, I think that most modern browsers have scroll bars on the side.

There is no need for 12 fucking pages.

no Xtended? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474921)

No mention of Xtended for X3?

Battlefield 1942 - Desert Combat (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25474967)

This what IMHO the BEST game mod ever. Of course, the boys/girls(?) ended up making BF2 if memory serves. I loved Desert Combat, but no one liked it when I was in the chopper and spawn camped.

I'd play this game now if I had time. 3

AnonymousAdventurer (2, Interesting)

Whirligig (1182227) | more than 5 years ago | (#25474979)

The article is loaded with phrases like 'our research indicates' and half the mods aren't even released. How can you decide what the best mods are if you've not even played them? Having ALFA (A Land Far Away) listed is amusing considering it was the laughing stock of the NWN community for years and despite its 'ambition' never did anything dozens of other persistent worlds hadn't already done.

Look at Original Title (2, Informative)

Parz (1353593) | more than 5 years ago | (#25475015)

hi guys, I just wanted to say that the original title was Mods that Matter in 2008. It just seems like a lot of the comments are specifically reacting to the work 'successful' which was not added by me in the submission and is a bit misleading. Also to the person who copy and pasted the whole article. That is a pretty big breach of copyright, you shoud probably remove it.

A "So Awsome" list (1)

Yacoby (1295064) | more than 5 years ago | (#25475017)

This list seems very... oriented towards new games. I am not an old school gamer, I started gaming about 98, and seriously in 02, but these mods seem very orientated towards new games. I was also expect mods that were amazing, that became a game, Team Fortress for example... Infact, Yeah, where the hell is Team Fortress?

Next time this list is compiled, I want it compiled by someone who has forgotten more than I know about gaming, has been and done it all.

*Wanders off muttering*

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