Top 10 First-Person Shooters of All Time

First Person Shooters are one of the most beloved, yet over-saturated genres currently in the gaming industry. While there are a lot of great ones out there, there are an exceptional bunch that stand out over the others. Here are my personal favorites in the industry that truly stood out:

10) Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Vegas

Ubisoft welcomed gamers with the tactical FPS, Rainbow Six Vegas, when it hit the market back in the Fall of 2006. With it’s hybrid of FPS mechanics and TPS cover system, you got a nice blend that gave gamers something different from your typical FPS. Couple that with some great environmental design, strong soundtrack and gripping story, with an ending no one sees coming, and you’ve got a stellar game here that FPS fans owe themselves to play.

9) Doom 64

Doom has always been a sweet FPS that many hold dear to them. However, what set Doom 64 apart from the prior installments was the creepy mood it captured. Environments were much more expansive than ever before and the audio really set a strikingly creepy vibe. In the previous ones, you’d have bumpin’ rock tunes to listen to while shooting away at mutants. This one had you sitting tensely thanks to atmospheric tunes that set your mind in a more “horror” mentality. It was still the same game we grew to love, only evolved into a horror state.

8) Half-Life 2

When it comes to FPSs, Valve is certainly known for providing groundbreaking experiences and that came with Half-Life. We had never seen or played any game like it before and to this day, still stands out as a revolutionary experience. Many years later, after much hype and demand, Valve released the highly anticipated sequel, Half-Life 2, to much critical and consumer reception. Implementing a whole new physics engine that had never been seen before, along with a gripping narrative, Half-Life 2 set out to create a new standard in FPSs and did exactly that.

7) BioShock

“Son, you were born to do great things…” Upon hearing that line, the airline you’re on begins to malfunction and crashes in the ocean. As you swim to the surface, you look at the remnants of plane, astounded by the visuals Irrational Games achieved. BioShock easily has a lot going for it. Set in alternate 1960s era, you’ll be greeted with a mystifying narrative, outstanding visuals, strong environment designs, fine-tuned combat and some of the best water effects seen in a game to date. The city of Rapture was a joy to explore as you never knew what to expect next.

6) Resistance: Fall of Man

To start off, Insomniac Games is one of my favorite developers. Granted, I never really got around to playing the Spyro games on PS1 but I started with their Ratchet & Clank titles on PS2 and damn, were those flawless games. At the release of the PS3, there’s no denying that there was a lack of solid titles to pick up alongside the pricey system…except for Insomniac’s “Resistance: Fall of Man”. Not only was it the best PS3 launch title, it was one of the best FPSs ever created. Solid visuals, a mystifying story, tight gameplay, lengthy campaign, intense 32 player online mode, suspenseful soundtrack and some of the best sound effects in a shooter, Resistance: Fall of Man is one FPS that should not have been missed.

5) Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare

While Call of Duty is turning into a mundane yearly affair for many, there was a recent time where we didn’t trash on the game as much. COD4: MW was simply the best one as it wasn’t too heavily structured as being a mindless shooter. Easily the best campaign in the series, it also had the most polished and fine tuned multiplayer. As the series went on, they aimed for a “more is better” approach on multiplayer which in turn, made the series become a turn off to many die-hard fans of COD4.

4) Turok 2

Turok 2 is the definition of how an FPS adventure is done right. Brilliant weapons, sharp visuals, environments full of detail, phenomenal cinematic soundtrack and finely tuned shooting mechanics. This game would eat up an easy 20-40 hours just to get through the rich campaign. After this installment, the franchise fell from grace with the questionable Turok 3: Shadow of Oblivion, atrocious Turok: Evolution and mediocre reboot that hit the current gen simply known as Turok.

3) Perfect Dark

Another stellar FPS to hit the N64 (and later with an HD remaster on XBLA) was toward the end of the system’s lifecycle. Perfect Dark pushed the visuals of the N64 beyond anything thought imaginable on the system at the time. It built upon and perfected the gameplay mechanics made for GoldenEye and had a ton of content to take on. Awesome weaponry, outstanding soundtrack, a mostly solid campaign (starts amazing but begins to feel a bit jarring towards the end), one of the most robust multiplayers that still competes with today’s standards, and flawless mechanics made this an FPS that couldn’t be missed.

2) GoldenEye 007 (N64)

No matter how you put it, GoldenEye was one of the pinnacles of FPSs to ever grace gamers. At the time, there was really nothing quite like it. A solid campaign that made players complete a variety of objectives, along with an untouchable 4-player multiplayer that provided for some of the most memorable moments when playing with friends. The game added further complexity by adding cheats to unlock by completing missions on specific difficulties while speed running them. Simple unlocks consisted of the infamous DK Mode and Paintball Mode, but truly skilled players could unlock Invincibility by completing the Facility level on 00 Agent in under 2:10, which is incredibly impressive.

1) TimeSplitters 2

TimeSplitters 2 was developed by the same team that was behind the flawless GoldenEye 007 back on the N64 but also behind the game that shut them down, Haze. Regardless, TimesSplitters 2 had it all. An over-the-top, fun campaign, deep and fully customizable multiplayer and a full-blown Map Maker so that you can not only make your own multiplayer maps for you and your friends to duke it out on, but also create Single Player missions! Top this with nostalgic mechanics from GoldenEye, a brilliant soundtrack and a rock solid 60 fps and you’ve got a package that is truly astonishing.

Did you play these titles? If so, which ones were your favorites? Sound off in the comments below!

Be sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook!

Top 10 Nintendo 64 Soundtracks

The Nintendo 64 was revolutionary upon it’s release in 1996.  It was the first time we got to play a 3D platformer on a console that truly redefined the way we play games today.  The N64 had a ton of great titles…but which ones had the best soundtracks?  Let’s find out what my personal top 10 soundtracks were for the N64.

 

– The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time

What is considered to be not only the greatest Zelda game of all time, but the greatest overall game of all time, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time really set a whole new standard for future adventure games.  The amount of gameplay elements incorporated into this game were simply stunning.  However, the soundtrack is easily one of the N64’s strongest.  From it’s variety of cheerful tracks, to adventurous ones, to just downright creepy, this soundtrack was absolutely brilliant.

 

– Super Mario 64

Hands down, Super Mario 64 was my favorite Mario game of all time.  Lengthy, challenging and downright addictive, Super Mario 64 was my introduction into the 3D world of gaming.  The soundtrack alone was a motivation for me to keep playing.  The tunes normally stuck in your head during and after your play session but there was one tune that really kept me going, Bowser’s Stage Theme.  Whenever you get up to the level leading up to a battle with Bowser, it got you completely pumped up for overcoming the challenges ahead to tackle the King of Koopas himself.  If you’ve never played Super Mario 64, I pity you…

 

-Castlevania

Castlevania for the N64 didn’t sit well with most fans of the franchise.  Fans considered it too much of a departure from your standard Castlevania title and felt the gameplay was too basic.  I completely disagree with their thoughts and feel, as a diehard Castlevania fan, that it was one of the best installments.  Why?  More like why not.  It was a creepy adventure with a good storyline and fun gameplay mechanics.  Sure, it wasn’t a perfect Castlevania title, but it was very addictive…and to this day, still is for me.  To be fair, the soundtrack greatly enhanced my experience with Castlevania.  The songs in this game were chilling and intense at the same time, which perfectly incorporated into the atmosphere of the game.  Plus, Castlevania is about going up against vampires (and I’m not talking about the emo “Twilight” ones)…this game did just that!  The track attached below is from the “bull boss battle” in the Castle Center stage and the “final boss battle.”  This track alone masterfully depicted the intensity of these boss fights and really brought you further into the experience.

 

– Conker’s Bad Fur Day

“Ah, that’s better.”  Conker’s Bad Fur Day was, in my opinion, Rareware’s last classic game they’ve developed.  It was gruesome, vulgar and downright hilarious!  From the moment you started Conker and saw it’s dark opening, you weren’t quite sure what to expect from the game.  Then when you start playing and encounter “Beerdy…er…Birdy the Scarecrow,”  you know you’re in for a one of a kind experience.  The soundtrack greatly varied depending on the situations at hand.  If you were out in the field, it was normally cheery music.  Get to the haunted house stage and naturally it becomes very creepy.  Reach the “lobby scene” from “The Matrix” and it gets very techno-y.  No matter what, the music perfectly fit each scenario.  However, my personal favorite song in this game was from the “Rock Solid” nightclub.  Everytime I hear that, I feel the need to get drunk, unzip my pants and start taking a piss on anyone in front of me.  Ah Conker, you’ve taught me many good things in life.

 

– Jet Force Gemini

Jet Force Gemini is a completely underrated gem from Rareware.  This sci-fi action/adventure shooter was very impressive in terms of…well, everything.  It really displayed some beautiful visuals for the N64, had great controls, addictive gameplay mechanics and an epic soundtrack.  The soundtrack was very cinematic and to this day, still stands the testament of time.  From the character select screen, to the first time you reach the SS Anubis, the music alone prepared you for how insane the game was going to be.  A true N64 classic that many people unfortunately missed…

 

– GoldenEye 007

Of course GoldenEye was going to be on this list.  Graeme Norgate is a genius when it came to composing music for Rareware.  Always creating intense tracks for games that set the mood brilliantly, GoldenEye was strongly enhanced due to it’s incredibly memorable soundtrack.  Every single level had a unique feel to it thanks to the variety in each track.  I could literally go on for days about what made GoldenEye so incredible, but I’m sure most of you readers know how amazing of a game it was.

 

– Perfect Dark

The spiritual successor to GoldenEye, Perfect Dark was Rareware’s return to the FPS genre…and wow, did it return with a bang.  Perfect Dark had outstanding visuals, flawless gameplay, a multiplayer mode that has yet to be matched (in my opinion) and a rockin’ soundtrack.  One of the coolest features within the deep customization of the multiplayer was the fact that you can choose the song to listen to during the multiplayer match (something many other games really need to start utilizing).  However, the moment you start the first campaign mission, you know the soundtrack is going to be killer to listen to.

 

– Spider-Man

Spider-Man for the N64 wasn’t just an awesome superhero game, it was just an awesome game in general.  Sure, the game lacked length, but it also allowed for multiple playthroughs that way.  The soundtrack was a strong highlight for the game.  Whether you were chasing Venom, fighting lizardmen on top of a subway train to get to Mary Jane, or being chased by an NYPD helicopter in an intense sequence, the music always deeply contributed to the set pieces.

 

– Extreme G

Futuristic motorcycles?  Check.  Ludicrous speed?  Check.  Bumpin’ techno soundtrack that you could rave to no matter where you are?  Checkity check check!  Extreme G was one of the fastest racing games available for the N64 and was also one of the best.  The soundtrack literally drove this game though.  Every song played for each stage fit perfectly into the game and increased the intensity of the game by doing so.

 

– Turok 2: Seeds of Evil

Back when FPS’s weren’t only about running forward and shooting anything that moves, Turok 2: Seeds of Evil was one of the best FPS’s available for the N64.  A massive campaign, excellent graphics that showcased the N64’s capabilities, some of the coolest weapons seen in a game to this day and a truly magnificent soundtrack made this one hell of a package.  The soundtrack really depicted the atmosphere in a brilliant manner, whether you were in a city port (Port of Adia) or in a Mantid Hive, these tracks would last anywhere between 5 to 11 minutes each!  Realistically, most games nowadays have music that only lasts for two minutes, then loops again.  Every song sounded completely unique and never repetitive by any means.  Turok 2: Seeds of Evil is an example of how to score a soundtrack for an FPS.

 

The Nintendo 64 was one of my favorite consoles of all time and I have numerous memories of many games on the system.  There were a lot of games lined up for this “Top 10 Soundtracks” list and it was tough to eliminate them, but in the long run, these were the games that had the most memorable soundtracks to me.  Sound off your thoughts in the comments below!