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Genre-Defining Games?

Zonk posted about 9 years ago | from the because-who-doesn't-love-maniac-mansion? dept.

Games 231

Gamasutra has up responses from its frequent feature, the question of the Week. This week's question was a call for the best of the best. "For any genre of your choice, what is the game that defines that genre for you?" From the article: "For the RPG, simply Final Fantasy 6. It has the best story, greatest variety of characters, tons of different music, and added many secret areas. It was the first game to truly to define a real experience of an RPG to the player. -Anonymous" What games would you refer to as Genre Defining?

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Action FPS (0)

K9black (620592) | about 9 years ago | (#12250849)

Of course Half-life As of right now.. MMORPG - World of Warcraft

Re:Action FPS (1)

DarthMAD (805372) | about 9 years ago | (#12250944)

World of Warcraft may be beloved by many but it is not the genre-defining game for MMORPGs. That would probably have to be Everquest or possibly Ultima Online, classics without which WoW would not be possible.

Re:Action FPS (1)

theclam159 (833616) | about 9 years ago | (#12252031)

Blizzard is excellent at producing genre-defining games. Sure, EQ and UO came out earlier than WoW and invented many of the concepts that are used in modern MMORPGs. However, WoW refined the genre so much that I'd say that it is a genre-defining game, because it will probably define every single MMORPG that comes after it.

Re:Action FPS (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12251132)

I knew some fucking clueless fagot would mention WOW.

The Blizzard-astroturfers have become as notorious as the Mac-zealot-astroturfs.

Fucking company-paid trolls.

Sports Games (4, Funny)

g-san (93038) | about 9 years ago | (#12250853)

Gotta be pong!

Re:Sports Games (2, Funny)

bigman2003 (671309) | about 9 years ago | (#12251836)

Well a lot of times they put Racing in the sports category. So, I'll talk about racing...

One of the crack-addict submitters to the original story said: "PC racers include Burnout, Need for Speed, and so on, with the same dull, lifeless AI."

If he thinks Burnout 3 (he mentioned the '3' earlier in the story) has dull, lifeless AI he is completely insane.

That game has the most aggressive AI I have ever played against. The first time the other cars came after me and rammed me off the road in a big ball of flames I nearly shit my pants. And it was like that hour after hour after hour. (I changed my pants a lot.)

So...take their list with a grain of salt...

Genre Defining? (3, Insightful)

BridgeBum (11413) | about 9 years ago | (#12250873)

Wouldn't a genre defining game have to be something which MADE a genre? To me, FF6 isn't even close for RPG's. Pick one of 'Wizardry' or 'Bard's Tale'. For FPS, Castle Wolfenstein. (I'd accept Doom, since that's what really made FPS 'take off'.)

A genre defining game is hardly the same as 'best game in genre'.

Re:Genre Defining? (1)

wed128 (722152) | about 9 years ago | (#12250908)

I thought castle wolfenstein was a top-down shooter for the C64. anyway, there are FPSes that predate Wolfenstein 3d for years, with vector graphics and such.

Re:Genre Defining? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12251349)

Jesus you are a pedantic fuck. Everybody on Slashdot hates you, why don't you stop posting?

Re:Genre Defining? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12252204)

Seconded. That guy blows ass.

Oh, by the way - anonymous posting to Slashdot isn't anonymous. Make a comment logged in. Then reply to your comment but check the post anonymously box. You won't get a message that says there was a reply to your message. Slashdot not only promotes and loves socialism/communism but they run the fucking thing like the USSR was run. DESTROY SLASHDOT!!!

Re:Genre Defining? (2, Interesting)

fwice (841569) | about 9 years ago | (#12250961)

As far as interaction with the environment, Duke Nukem 3D completely changed the way I thought about fps. Unlike Doom, you could jump, duck, fly (jetpack), and interact with the environment other than going into elevators and opening doors. And the multiplayer fun was amazing and brilliant. From being able to demolish buildins, starting moving projectors, blowing halls, and giving strippers money to see those horribly drawn boobies, it paved the way for the FPS series' to come (Quake & Half Life).

Re:Genre Defining? (1)

secolactico (519805) | about 9 years ago | (#12250980)

Pick one of 'Wizardry' or 'Bard's Tale'.

Pfft. Ultima Series. It set the standard for stand alone RPG. Then "evolved" into Ultima Online. It was not the first online RPG (MUDs, Meridian 59 pre-date it), but it was the first truly massive and inmersive.

Re:Genre Defining? (2, Informative)

eurasian (786214) | about 9 years ago | (#12251054)

Quake is genre defining quite apart from Doom, as Quake was ACTUAL 3D, Wolfenstein 3D and Doom were just tons and tons of pretty sprites.

Re:Genre Defining? (4, Insightful)

orkysoft (93727) | about 9 years ago | (#12251094)

How about Dungeon Master? I'd say that would be one of the CRPG-defining games, if not the CRPG-defining game...

Not Exactly (1, Insightful)

beakerMeep (716990) | about 9 years ago | (#12251119)

"Genre defining" I think means the game that best represents what the genre is about. So not necessarily what made a genre take off or started a genre but more like the first game that comes to mind when someone mentions a genre.

Re:Not Exactly (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12251360)

"Genre defining" I think means the game that best represents what the genre is about.

This whole discussion, then, is the AKC dog show of gaming. Great dogs, sure, but...look at that one! Teehee, it's all fur!

Re:Not Exactly (2, Insightful)

Koiu Lpoi (632570) | about 9 years ago | (#12251634)

I must disagree with the article. If Final Fantasy 6 defines RPGs as a genere, then I hate RPGs. Experience has shown I do not hate RPGs, just the Final Fantasy series/style. I would submit KOTOR. Or Phantasy Star 4.

Re:Not Exactly (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12252221)

Final Fantasy defines the Console RPG, which is to real RPGs what tofu is to beef: a poor substitute that people will continue to try and insist somehow fills the niche.

Console RPGs are, without fail, really "turn based battle simulators," in that the game, such as there is, does not consist of "playing a role" but instead repeatedly fighting the same stupid battles over and over again. A console RPG is all about leveling.

Real RPGs focus on an environment and the role your character plays in it. Console RPGs focus on battles, with the story thrown in to kind of tie them together.

Think "Dragon Ball Z": a poor story drawn out far longer than necessary due to an excessive number of battles. (And a legion of fans that thing it's The Best Thing Ever! and will not stop talking about them.)

So, anyway, Final Fantasy defines the Console RPG, which is not the same thing as the RPG.

Re:Genre Defining? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12252675)

The Japanese console RPG was "defined" well before even the first Final Fantasy game, not even to mention the sixth in the series.

This feat was accomplished in the original Dragon Quest/Dragon Warrior. Just ask Sakaguchi what game series he was thinking about when he tried to turn Square around - "only" the game series that had started taking Japan by storm and making some serious money for Enix at the time. That Final Fantasy did so much to innovate within the genre is Square's only real credit...the real birth of the Japanese console RPG occurred much earlier than Square even entered the picture.

As for home computer RPGs, I have to say that I'm a few years short of having any real experience with the early days of this type of game (being just shy of 30 hurts me here). But I've heard huge things about both Ultima I and Ultima III having been huge influences to my favorite childhood series, Bard's Tale and Might & Magic, that they are probably the ones I'd point to. Along with Wizardry, Ultima is the series all the gamer mags raved about as being the RPG innovators in the early 80s. I've played both of the mentioned Ultimas since then, and they really are very good games, especially Ultima III. It's very easy to see the legacy of Ultima III in the Japanese console RPGs of the 8-bit era, which alone makes it worth playing even today.

[At this point, I'd recommend that anyone who wants some easy karma post the links to the shareware enhanced remakes of the Ultimas for the various modern platforms. I played through Ultima III on the Mac, so aim for +5 by finding as many platform ports as possible.] :)

Populous (3, Interesting)

andyh1978 (173377) | about 9 years ago | (#12250895)

No mention of the pure classic that is Populous? It's the classic God-genre game; although it's a genre mostly consisting of Peter Molyneux games. It's got to be a strong influence for many RTS games, though. I also see the infamous Brandon Every puts his (apparently) unqualified oar into the proceedings...

Re:Populous (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12251330)

Populous, and to a less extent Powermonger, were classic games. But I wonder whether God-genre and RTS games share a common ancestry in the original SimCity?

Re:Populous (1)

andyh1978 (173377) | about 9 years ago | (#12251549)

Populous, and to a less extent Powermonger, were classic games. But I wonder whether God-genre and RTS games share a common ancestry in the original SimCity?
Populous was released in 1987, and was the first (?) God-genre game.
The original SimCity was released in 1989.

Re:Populous (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12252187)

Populous defined the god game.

Dune 2 defined RTS.

Kick Off defined football games for a long time (until the trend moved away from overhead view).

Mario defined the platformer.

Duke Nukem defined the shareware platformer.

Wolfenstein 3D defined FPS.

Duh (1)

Apreche (239272) | about 9 years ago | (#12250897)

Fighting:Street Fighter 2 (championship edition if you want)
Platform:Mega Man 2
RTS:Warcraft 2
Space:TIE Fighter

and I don't know the genre, but Civilizaition 2

Re:Duh (1)

evilNomad (807119) | about 9 years ago | (#12251028)

Nah, dune 2 defined RTS, not Warcraft..

Re:Duh (1)

Randolpho (628485) | about 9 years ago | (#12251098)

I was gonna mention Dune 2, too, but on second thought I agree with the grandparent post. Dune 2 may have inspired Warcraft, but Warcraft did a helluva lot better than Dune 2 did.

I loved 'em both, of course. :)

Mega Man (1)

dnixon112 (663069) | about 9 years ago | (#12251160)

I think it's a toss up between Mega Man 1 (Rock Man) or Mega Man 2. If memory serves me correctly, Mega Man 2 was released stateside before Rock Man. Otherwise I would say Rock Man deserves the 'genre defining' title. Both games are amazing though. If you were to create a new category of 3D platform, then I think without question Mario64 would be the game that defined that genre.

Re:Duh (1)

glaeven (845193) | about 9 years ago | (#12251245)

Platforming would have to either Super Mario Bros. or even Pitfall.

Re:Duh (1)

Dizzle (781717) | about 9 years ago | (#12251311)

Correct. I do not associate platformer with Mega Man, though I do hold that series very dear to my heart. SMB is it for me, possibly SMB 3.

Street Fighter invented hot chick fighters (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12251323)

Fighting:Street Fighter 2 (championship edition if you want)

Indeed. Street Fighter 2 brought a welcome new addition to the realm of fighting games: sexy girl fighters! Think about it: before that, fighting games were just one brute fighting another. With SF2, all of the sudden you could choose to fight with Chun Li or Cammy instead of some overmuscled brute! Needless to say, it was a brilliant way to stimulate young hormonally-charged boys even more and pretty much every fighting game since then has featured some sexy babe character!

Re:Duh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12251412)

Street Fighter 2?!

Come on.. Give me Karate Champ over that junk any day. (Barbarian on the C64 would be a close second; love that head chop)

Re:Duh (1)

mooingyak (720677) | about 9 years ago | (#12251981)

I was always more into Mortal Kombat than street fighter, and quake more than half life. The rest are dead on.

Add to that
Sports: Tecmo Bowl.
RPG: Dragon Warrior (The whole series)

Not Genre defining, but... (4, Interesting)

TrippTDF (513419) | about 9 years ago | (#12250900)

There is a moment in Max Payne 2 where you can listen to recorded messages from Max's tapped phone lines. You hear a couple of phone conversations that push the story a little, and then there is one where Max calls a phone sex line. He sounds depressed, lonely and in a way, confused.

The whole game you have Max in your ear, talking in this very noir tone. He's narrating his own story, if you will, and telling the player what he wants them to hear. That moment when you hear the phone sex call was almost like a breach of privacy between the player and Max. It was on Max's intention for the player to hear this low moment in his life.

Games are great at making one scared, surprised, intrigued and a bunch of other emmotions, but that was the first time that I felt empathy towards a video game. It's not genre defining, but it was a moment that shows that there can be a lot of depth to what games can be. They can be more than just shoot-em-ups. They can convey some serious, complex emmotions. We will see more of this in games in the future.

Re:Not Genre defining, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12251303)

They can even convey emotions with only ONE "m"!

Re:Not Genre defining, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12251491)

Similar experience with Ultima 7 Serpent Isle while trying to find Cantra, the 14 year old girl who had gone missing. (spoiler warning - heh) When I came to the end of the trail and beat Batlin's minions into the ground, I felt sure her rescue was near. When Batlin said the girl was dead, and I saw her butchered corpse upstairs, I actually felt rage towards a fictional character. Quite impressive for a game to evoke that depth of emotion.

That was one my favorite games of all time. Once you reached the point where you killed Foozle (Batlin), you were only about half way through the game. I was a little disappointed that Cantra could never be fully restored, though.

Re:Not Genre defining, but... (1)

Koiu Lpoi (632570) | about 9 years ago | (#12251650)

I played through Max Payne 2, but never found that point in the game. Where was it? Can you point me to any audio clips of it on the 'net, seeing as I don't want to play through it again?

Re:Not Genre defining, but... (-1, Troll)

metalhed77 (250273) | about 9 years ago | (#12252570)

Sadly, any real intimacy was immediately erased from the players face when they realized they were trying to empathize with a guy named Max Payne whose raison d'etre is to engage in slow motion gun fights.

DOOM (1)

NiTr|c (130325) | about 9 years ago | (#12250903)

I would say that the original DOOM would have to define FPS for me. I remember, and also played, Wolfenstein 3D, but seeing the levels in DOOM with the graphics and new weaponry was just fantastic. Even today, DOOM is still mentioned as one of the pioneering, and defining, games of the genre. The DOOM pack (DOOM, DOOM 2, and Ultimate DOOM) makes for quite a nice weekend every once in a while.

The Legend of Zelda (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12250906)

The Legend of Zelda: Link to the Past was amazing. One of the best 2d games ever IMO.

Not "genre-defining" (1, Interesting)

pudding7 (584715) | about 9 years ago | (#12250927)

That list was more like "My favorite games". Starcraft didn't define the RTS genre, it was just a popular RTS game. Plenty of games before Starcraft defined what Starcraft would eventually become.

same with all the other genres.

Disgusting (2, Insightful)

Nasarius (593729) | about 9 years ago | (#12250940)

For the RPG, simply Final Fantasy 6.

The Final Fantasy games are considered RPGs? Oh right, they're "console RPGs".

It has the best story, greatest variety of characters.


tons of different music

So? If the music is really exceptional, it might be worth noting, but quantity is different from quality.

and added many secret areas


It was the first game to truly to define a real experience of an RPG to the player.

Hilarious. So prior to FF6 (released in 1999?), there were no "real RPG experiences"? What does that even mean?

And how old are these people? I'm only 19, but I'd go with Ultima VII as the genre-defining RPG.

Re:Disgusting (4, Insightful)

Yobgod Ababua (68687) | about 9 years ago | (#12251252)

I'm afraid I must agree, although the term "RPG" is really way too broad to be defined by any one single game.

Wasteland helped define the post-apocalyptic party-based RPG "genre".

Bard's Tale defined the standard form for many party-based RPGs for quite some time.

Ultima IV was a defining game for RPGs where your in-game choices changed your character, and where certain situations would have no "correct" solution.

Ultima VII showed that you could create a surprisingly living world.

FF6 may be genre defining for it's little niche of the RPG landscape... I haven't played it myself and can't really say.

Re:Disgusting (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12252256)

FF6 may be genre defining for it's little niche of the RPG landscape... I haven't played it myself and can't really say.

How about "Pointless Level Grind"? All the Final Fantasy games are about leveling up, and the battles to do so. The story is only there to lead you through the battles.

The decisions you make have no effect. Characters can never die, unless the story says they have to, in which case there is no way to prevent it. Your actions have absolutely no effect on the world you exist in. You can't improve anyone's life. Everything you do has no effect on anything.

About the only thing you can do is gain levels, or run pointless side quests to get better items or abilities. While these side quests may suggest you've improved someone's life, nothing else will change. They just won't give you the side quest any more.

So, I'd call the Final Fantasy genre "Pointless Level Grind" or maybe "Character Battle Simulator" or something like that. It has absolutely nothing to do with playing any role. It is a game, though...

Re:Disgusting (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12252681)

What's really amusing is that while what you say is true of some console RPGs, FF6 has exceptions to everything you listed.

Re:Disgusting (3, Interesting)

Bongo Bill (853669) | about 9 years ago | (#12251328)

(released in 1999?)

I don't mean to nit-pick (except really I do), but FF6 was 1994, and was ported to the Playstation in 1999. Still, it's hardly genre-defining. Perhaps it defines the 16-bit subset of console RPGs... but then you're getting far too specific for this issue.

I think it's safe to assume that console RPGs are a whole different animal than PC RPGs. They're only likely to diverge farther, too.

If there were a defining game for console RPGs, I'd put it at Dragon Warrior III.

Slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12250949)

Definitely was a ground-breaker in FPS (First PostS) games.

what they mean to say is.... (1)

urdine (775754) | about 9 years ago | (#12250950)

"What game is the most archtypical for its genre, and is also a great game?" The flavor of the experiment is to find a title that defines the ideal of the genre - add anything and it gets weaker, take anything away and it gets weaker. I agree with World of Warcraft for MMORPG. It has every generic MMORPG feature, but does them all in a great way. For FPS I'd say Doom. Everything since then has been window-dressing, unless you want to say Q2 or Half-Life for the modding scene. RPG has a lot of flavors, but FF6 is a good choice. I've always loved the SNES RPG types best (Secret of Mana, etc). Hell, I might go with Dragon Warrior, though. Sports game, you have to give it to Madden, the original. Well, for me '95 is The Year of Madden, but Tecmo Super Bowl is STILL the best football game.

Re:what they mean to say is.... (1)

demondawn (840015) | about 9 years ago | (#12250981)

Well, I'd have to say that Secret of Mana is a different TYPE of RPG (the action-RPG, which is probably more well "defined" by Legend of Zelda). Final Fantasy VI, on the other hand, didn't really define the console RPG (if you want to go that route, quite possibly Final Fantasy I.) It REDEFINED the genre.

What they mean to say is... (1)

urdine (775754) | about 9 years ago | (#12250987)

"What game is the most archtypical for its genre, and is also a great game?"

The flavor of the experiment is to find a title that defines the ideal of the genre - add anything and it gets weaker, take anything away and it gets weaker.

I agree with World of Warcraft for MMORPG. It has every generic MMORPG feature, but does them all in a great way.

For FPS I'd say Doom. Everything since then has been window-dressing, unless you want to say Q2 or Half-Life for the modding scene.

RPG has a lot of flavors, but FF6 is a good choice. I've always loved the SNES RPG types best (Secret of Mana, etc). Hell, I might go with Dragon Warrior, though.

Sports game, you have to give it to Madden, the original. Well, for me '95 is The Year of Madden, but Tecmo Super Bowl is STILL the best football game.

GTA (2, Interesting)

wed128 (722152) | about 9 years ago | (#12250997)

I think that grand theft auto and it's sequels are their own genre, and a fun one at that!

Re:GTA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12252425)

The genre of "games we can blame our violent behaviour on"?

rpg? ff6? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 9 years ago | (#12251009)

it's in it's own style a good game.

but heck.. not a lot of role playing going on there. pre-determined story that you advance with fighting, that's what it is.

As far as RPG's go (1)

Immercenary_2000 (863998) | about 9 years ago | (#12251021)

I think my absolute favorite would have to be Final Fantasy Tactics for the PSX. It had a great storyline, the music is probably the best i've heard in any video game, and to top it all off, the job system is well balanced. Mostly I like the tactical aspects of the game, as battles can be won and lost by where on the map you start your party. Hell, this game was released a little after FFVII and I'm still loading it up and playing it at least once every few months. As far as replay value goes you can't beat that.

Re:As far as RPG's go (1)

antifoidulus (807088) | about 9 years ago | (#12251552)

It's incredibly hard to find, but you should try tactics ogre for the playstation, IMHO an even better tactical game than FF Tactics. You can also pick up a version of the game for the gba. Well, it's a different game, but the art style is pretty identical, the story almost as equally epic(and there are actually multiple endings to each of the games), but the gameplay is a bit different.

Re:As far as RPG's go (1)

Immercenary_2000 (863998) | about 9 years ago | (#12251625)

I also hear Disgaea for PS2 is pretty good... as soon as I get a PS2 I'm going to have to try it out. I know it's sad I don't have one yet, but i'm more into PC games.

clearly defining genre game (2, Insightful)

OleMoudi (624829) | about 9 years ago | (#12251048)

Gotta be Metal Gear Solid(PSX version). IMHO he was the first to truly introduce the concept of stealth play in a seductive way to the masses.

Nowadays its hard not to find an action game without at least a level or mission in which you must avoid being spotted or setting off the alarm. Stealth game play its the perfect complement to action gameplay enriching the experience.

MGS also one of the first and better aproaches to film-like videogames according to the frame of reference of mainstream movies. RPG's always have been better at storytelling but the true aproach to plots, cinematics and characteres following hollywood films was first made with games like MGS or Silent Hill.

Re:clearly defining genre game (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12251211)

Crusader: No Remorse (1995) and Crusader: No regret (1996, an expansion rather than a whole new game) had plenty of stealth, if you chose to follow that path; depending on the dificulty level, triggering the alarm could be sure death. And I think it was No Regret that had a level in which you couldn't set off the alarm. It had real actors and video (the acting sucked, but that's still common in videogames), I haven't played enough of MGS to talk about the storyline and the world of the game, but Crusader's world is pretty damn deep, of course you had to bother to read some stuff (some I think was off game). In-game you could talk with a few people if you wished (at the bar, etc), and of course the video sequences that advanced the plot during and between missions. Frankly, I'm very sad there was never a third part, since the second ended in a way inconsistant with the Resistance's rules (I don't want to say much, but your final actions in the game can turn out to hurt more people than they help, with no 3rd part, it's hard to know).

Re:clearly defining genre game (1)

beerman2k (521609) | about 9 years ago | (#12251214)

I think you forgot about Metal Gear for NES. That game was fucking awsome.

Re:clearly defining genre game (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12251318)

The truck have started to move !!

Re:clearly defining genre game (2, Insightful)

roystgnr (4015) | about 9 years ago | (#12251845)

Gotta be Metal Gear Solid(PSX version). IMHO he was the first to truly introduce the concept of stealth play in a seductive way to the masses.

Which masses? When I think "stealth play" the first games that come to mind are Thief (came out the same year) and Deus Ex (two years later).

Naming a genre-defining movie is hard enough. I think naming a genre-defining game is impossible. The lists that come to my mind include PC-only games, Mac-only games, and console games that only ran on one of several simultaneously competing systems. If a genre-defining movie comes out, anyone can rent it or see it in the theater for 5 or 10 bucks, but unless you've had way too much money on your hands for the last decade, you probably passed up games that other gamers would consider "genre-defining" because it cost four times as much to buy or rent the yet-another-hardware-platform it was compatible with.

Re:clearly defining genre game (1)

Zangief (461457) | about 9 years ago | (#12252468)

MGS predates Thief just for a couple of months. However, Konami gave advances of the game years before its release, so Thief MIGHT have been influenced for it.

However, in any discusion about which one defined the genre, Thief will always lose, because MGS had a LOT more people who played it, maybe even on the PC.

Maybe the PSX just flew under your radar, but the fact that the PC has better graphics for more money, doesn't actually means that its games are always the best.

If I may be serious for a moment: (1)

Headcase88 (828620) | about 9 years ago | (#12252136)

There is only room for one genre-defining slealth game, and it's Pac-Man! Pac-Man ownzorz your boxxors !!!1



eurasian (786214) | about 9 years ago | (#12251092)

Granted, it's a very very youngish genre, but important, nonetheless. Natural Selection, of course. The most popular to date multiplayer RTS/FPS out there. I give points to Savage for prettiness, and Allegiance for intricacy and hardcore fanbase. But NS really brought the genre to the fore, imho.

Genre Definers (1)

rooskie (741631) | about 9 years ago | (#12251105)

It's fair to say Warcraft defines the Real Time Strategy genre. Most all features you see in today's RTS games were pioneered by Blizzard - unit selection, shortcuts, GUI, and multiplayer. FPS games? Doom, and Half-life for the sub-genre of multi-player FPS.

Zork, you insensitive yougins! (3, Insightful)

EnronHaliburton2004 (815366) | about 9 years ago | (#12251136)

Most of you are probably two young to remember, but before these fancy-schmanzy E-G-A video cards and Mice, we had (mostly) text games. AND WE LIKED IT!

Zork was one of the first, and one of the best. It established some classic puns (See my .sig), and influenced the humor in many games.

Now, go find that Grue.

Re:Zork, you insensitive yougins! (2, Insightful)

cphilo (768807) | about 9 years ago | (#12251586)

Zork for text games (1980s) I was taking a class in personal computers in the 80s and was told by the professor that my 5 hours of personal design should be used to get him past the point in Zork where he was stuck. Great fun. Might and Magic (early 1990s)Classic Dungeons and Dragons. Morrowind and Arcanum for innovation. (late 1990s) Cant comment on the MMORPGs, as when I tried to play those, my husband would come in and want dinner or attention or something and then my group would grumble or or die (I play clerics), so I had to give them up.

Re:Zork, you insensitive yougins! (1)

Koiu Lpoi (632570) | about 9 years ago | (#12251659)

Being young has nothing to do with it. I've played through the first three zork games, and I'm only 18. I wasn't even born when zork came out! And yes, I liked it. Great games, in my opinion. I haven't since seen anything like it. Well, there was this MUCK called Crossroads. Oh, and nice sig.

Ragnarok Online (1)

demondawn (840015) | about 9 years ago | (#12251195)

It DEFINED the super-cutesy Korean anime-based MMORPG!

Re:Ragnarok Online (1)

djdanlib (732853) | about 9 years ago | (#12251817)

RO was my first MMO, and I still miss some aspects of it (now playing FFXI) ... RO is the closest to perfect I've experienced, and I've been regaled with tales of EQ, PSO, and all the others till I was bored to tears. It's a GREAT game.

FF 6 zealots. (1)

incom (570967) | about 9 years ago | (#12251200)

I'm sick of all these FF6 zealots, FF4 is the best.

Re:FF 4 zealots. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12252448)

I'm sick of all these FF4 zealots, FF6 is the best

No, i'm not going to defend my position because i'm being sarcastic

Katamari Damacy (3, Funny)

rsilvergun (571051) | about 9 years ago | (#12251269)

It really got the ball rolling on the whole genre.

Re:Katamari Damacy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12252151)

Nah, it simply extended the 'Games Best Experienced while High' genre.

Hype strikes again (1)

frikazoyd (845667) | about 9 years ago | (#12251274)

I hate how people will go out and buy hype, then manifest their current eagerness everywhere they can. I guarantee you, in a year, God of War won't be considered the platform game. Besides, isn't God of War technically a hack 'n slash? When I think platformer, I think of games were half the difficulty comes from maneuvering. Prince of Persia: Sands of Time is a good modern one, but Mario Brothers 3 perfected the art, if you ask me.

Back to my point, it just seems that a lot of these entries are either hype-mongers or uber-nostalgists. I don't care that Guy #1 is old enough to remember getting an insane score in Pitfall, nor do I believe that a game that came out a month ago is the best of its series. If the same guy can play four really good games in the same genre six months from now, and go back to God of War, and still say it is the best in the genre, then I'll believe him.

Re:Hype strikes again (1)

bVork (772426) | about 9 years ago | (#12252354)

God Of War is closer to a beat-em-up than anything else. Yes, a very modernized 3D beat-em-up with intricate combos and minigames, but a beat-em-up nonetheless.

Double Dragon is, of course, the genre-defining beat-em-up, though not my favourite in the genre. My pick is River City Ransom [seanbaby.com].

One thing to notice is that many of the best games don't fit easily into a single genre. The aforementioned River City Ransom is my favourite beat-em-up, but there are enough statistics and moves to learn that one could argue that its an action/rpg. Rez is a rail-shooter that could be also considered a rhythm game, due to the way the music is directly affected by the action. Crazy Taxi is sort of a racing game, but also has elements of Paperboy (which is another difficult-to-classify game) and takes place in a wide-open 3D city (pre-dating GTA's move to 3D). And how exactly would you classify NiGHTS [emulationzone.org]? 3D-Platform-2D-Flight-Racing-Collecting-GodGame?

OT: Goddamn popups (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12251379)

In the last few weeks, a new breed of popups have appeared at Slashdot and a few other sites I visit. THEY BREAK MY WEB BROWSER. It's as if they steal focus permanently for a page, and I can't do damn thing with it.

Advertisers: fix it or I'm making a list of who is being advertised in these things and making a point to never give them money. I can't take this anymore.

Turn based Strategy (4, Interesting)

Casisiempre (691255) | about 9 years ago | (#12251383)

Empire or Civilization 1 were genre defining games for turn based strategy. Civilization had descent graphics for its time and endless playtime.

Re:Turn based Strategy (1)

Allaran (557295) | about 9 years ago | (#12251540)

Civilization had descent graphics for its time and endless playtime.

That's odd. I don't remember Civilization looking anything like Descent. I mean, one was an overhead view, and the other was first person 3D. How can you say such thing?

Oh...maybe you meant something else. ;)

Best Racing Simulator would be Grand Prix Legends (1)

aegilops (307943) | about 9 years ago | (#12251564)

If you want arcade fun, then GT4 certainly sounds the business. But for serious racing, even 7 years after its release there's still nothing like it for accuracy and immersion - although LFS [liveforspeed.net] and our own favourite open source project Motorsport [motorsport-sim.org] are getting close.

Don't make the mistake of thinking this is a nostalgic sympathy vote for a game that would look dismal to fresh eyes. See for yourself. [speedgeezers.com] If you're seriously into driving, you owe it to yourself to spend the $10 or so to check it out. If you're up for the challenge, start with this [rscnet.org].


Wing Commander 2 (2, Interesting)

failedlogic (627314) | about 9 years ago | (#12251579)

Wing Commander 2 was the best of the series. It broke the modern-video game industry (esp. if you bought the speech pack).

The system requiements were really high, the graphics were awesome, the interactivity (and changes in story line as you progressed were somewhat unheard of). I remember as a kid saving up to buy the first soundcard in my PC just so I could buy the speech pack and play.

Of the modern games which are listed, I must agree - Legend of Zelda Ocarina in Time is probably the greatest game made. Dare, I say, one of the best made in the last 10 years!

best game (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12251606)

sp2 was the best game


Fallout (4, Insightful)

GebsBeard (665887) | about 9 years ago | (#12251756)

I'm suprised Fallout didn't show up on that list. The game and its spiritual predecessor Wasteland were genre defining in a way - post holocaust RPGs. Granted, a very small genre but on their strength alone they should have gotten at least honorable mention.

THIEF!! (4, Insightful)

Axis of Weasel (700706) | about 9 years ago | (#12251771)

the only genre-creating and defining game

First Person Sneakers!!!!

Re:THIEF!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12252147)

Wow. You need more mod points. This is the most insightful, informational post in the whole topic.

Go deeper: (1)

Noodlenose (537591) | about 9 years ago | (#12251852)

Platform Game: Manic Miner

Adventure: The Hobbit and Myst

Real Time Strategy: Total Annihilation

Turn based Strategy: Alpha Centauri.

First Person Shooter: Battlezones (Atari Arcade)

Cheers, N

get over your acronyms... gawd (0, Troll)

funkify (749441) | about 9 years ago | (#12251873)

Oh gawd, there are just SO MANY GENRE DEFINING GAMES... ddr, gta, wow, moh, mgs, smb, loz, hl, cs, rtcw, pos, sol, stfu, bfh, wb, afk, ffa, wwf, kkk, peta, asd, qwe, ert, uio, opa, sdf, fhj, jkl, zxc, vbn, oh yes and of course the famous eew... and that's just to name a few!!!!!!

FF6 is awesome, but... (1)

Mmm coffee (679570) | about 9 years ago | (#12251882)

Final Fantasy 6 is an awesome game and I personally don't think that a game has bested it yet. However, to me it didn't define the modern console RPG. That honor goes to its grandfather, Final Fantasy 4.

While it wasn't the first of its kind, FF4 defines all the aspects of a modern console RPG and was the framework on which everything else built on top of. It gave us ATB and a battle system that was fast, fun, and at times totally insane. (Remember Plague?) The storyline was fairly deep for its time, and you gained a lot of respect for the characters even in the crappy US translation. In the real Japanese FF4 you had a small yet noticable amount of strategy in battles.

Moreover, while it seems primitive today it was mindblowingly awesome when it came out. Everything was simply perfect in its simplicity - nothing really stood out on its own but instead everything just blended together seamlessly to produce this memorable piece of art. The music was the best of its time. The graphics were primitive, but blended into the game wonderfully. The story gripped you. (Name a single video game character that went through half the crap Cecil went through by the first quarter of the game.) The characters were the most well developed of its time. (Rydia is the penultimate video game heroine, IMO.)

It all just came together so perfectly that you can literally see a "pre-FF4" and a "post-FF4" split in console RPGS. FF6 is a work of art, but those who played FF4 when it was released will know that it can easily hold its own against FF6.

It's a shame that the "young pups" can't see past a game's graphics. This is a often overlooked gem that made a huge mark in video game history.

Grasshopper games.. (1)

AltaMannen (568693) | about 9 years ago | (#12251946)

Mr. Boogaloo will always be the genre defining grasshopper game to me. I don't think any other game has quite captured the act of grasshopping like that game.

FFIV (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12252314)

First console RPG with dynamic characters. You changed class in the middle of the game, and it isn't fighter-knight stuff. Your character actually does a 180 turn in style.

FFVI was overly epic. It wasn't simple and sweet like FFIV.

Genres named after games. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#12252366)

Advenutre: Adventure [wikipedia.org] Roguelike: Rogue Rogue [wikipedia.org]

Ones that stand out for me (4, Interesting)

DanthemaninVA1 (750886) | about 9 years ago | (#12252458)

I'm just going to point out some things that I think.

I would take Planescape: Torment for RPGs over any Final Fantasy game, hands down.

Ico had an emotional pull like few other games I've played.

Not that I don't love Splinter Cell, but I'd rather play any of the Metal Gear Solid games any day.

I hate to use newer games that have just come out really recently, but in WWII shooters, Call of Duty and Brothers in Arms are just head an shoulders above the rest.

Graphic Adventure Games (3, Interesting)

Thenomain (537937) | about 9 years ago | (#12252497)

In the category of Graphic-Based Adventure Games, I nominate The Secret of Monkey Island. It was not the first by a long shot. If this were a thread about "created the genre" I'd probably put King's Quest in this place.

I almost said Grim Fandango, but really Grim Fandango is just as good as Monkey Island or Sam & Max Hit the Road or Day of the Tentacle but not so hugely better that I'd think it defined the genre. Re-introduced it, yeah, and that was wonderful. Monkey Island was funny, intelligent, not so entirely hard that I couldn't finish it, and has a fantastic soundtrack. (MI2's was even better.)

My love of Monkey Island 1 & 2 was what made the cancellation of the second Sam & Max harder to take. We all want to re-live the glory days in new and interesting ways.
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