Scopes up, safety catches off and trigger fingers at the ready? The best first person shooters ever made in no particular order are
Halo: Reach (2010)
This prequel follows the eclectic Noble Team as they battle to save planet Reach from a Covenant invasion. A gripping campaign is supported by Firefight mode and a revamped online multiplayer experience, featuring jetpacks, shields and other powerups to add to the legendary mayhem.
Golden Eye 007 (1997)
Based on the 1995 Bond Flick starring Pierce Brosnan, GoldenEye is regarded as one of the most important milestones in the FPS genre. Its array of gadgets and weapons was only overshadowed by the revolutionary multiplayer deathmatch mode where the tricky-to-see Oddjob reigned supreme.
Team Fortress 2 (2007)
Now free to play via Steam on PCs and Macs, TF2 is a game which consists of three parts manic action to two parts charming humour, peppered here and there with crazy weapons and novelty collectible items. Choose from nine unique classes and go give ‘em hell, soldier.
Quake III Arena (1999)
Ditching the single campaign altogether, the third instalment in the popular Quake series focused solely on multiplayer action against computer controlled bots. The ability to also play with up to 16 real-life fleshy people offered new challenges and no doubt resulted in a slew of geek-filled LAN parties.
Duke Nukem 3D (1996)
Featuring more than questionable language, naked strippers and a body count almost as high as the 3.5million copies it sold, Duke Nukem 3D was a roller coaster ride of alien shooting, stripper-tipping mayhem that stuck a middle finger up at political correctness.
Half Life 2 (2004)
Fifteen years after the first Half Life, the crowbar-wielding theoretical physicist returns to join the resistance against the tyrannical Combine rulers. Winning 39 game of the year gongs and numerous game of the decade accolades, this is a must-play for any FPS fan.
Unreal Tournament (1999)
Unreal Tournament focused primarily on head to head player and bot deathmatches where the AI could be set anywhere between novice and godlike. Classic battles such as team deathmatch and capture the flag ensured that a fully blown frag-fest was always on the cards.
The plot of a space marine fighting demons from Hell on Mars couldn’t get much manlier if it tried but – story aside – Doom is also undeniably considered to have been an FPS trailblazer, having pioneered immersive 3D graphics, networked gaming and bespoke mods.
Metroid Prime (2002)
The first 3D instalment in the legendary Metroid series sees an adventurous shooter in which you play Samus Aran, a female bounty hunter kitted out with a hi-tech power suit in which she must solve puzzles and blast down foes in order to progress through the levels.
If your gaming rig could run Crysis at max settings upon its release chances are it was a quantum computer. Eye-watering visuals enhanced the sheer awesomeness of your advanced nano-suit which offered super strength, lightning speed, armour and invisibility.
Perfect Dark (2000)
Perfect Dark resonated with echoes of GoldenEye throughout – both titles were crafted by developers Rare who decided to throw in an alluring female protagonist in the form of special agent Joanna Dark. Hi-res graphics and Dolby surround sound complimented the polished shooter perfectly.
Deus Ex: Human Revolution (2011)
Having augmented your body with technology, your new found abilities are used to take down your foes by any means necessary. The freedom to achieve your objectives with ninja-like stealth or all-out trigger spraying is a refreshing feature and ensures plenty or replay opportunities. Read the full review here
More after the break...
Counter Strike Source (2004)
This remake of the classic Counter Strike was well known as the hardcore FPS players’ game of choice. Little touches like body-location shot damage, recoil and no respawns meant no room for n00b errors. Boom, headshot.
Call of Duty: Black Ops (2010)
It may be a series plagued with obnoxious prepubescent teens, but that hasn’t stopped COD: Black Ops from grossing over a billion dollars in sales and selling over seven million copies in its first 24 hours. Shoot, blow up or knife down enemy soldiers in fast-paced battles of modern warfare.
Killzone 3 (2011)
Taking advantage of the latest tech, Killzone 3’s 3D playability and PlayStation Move compatibility offer the chance for a previously unseen level of immersive gameplay. 24 player multiplayer matches coupled with various gametypes ensure plenty of fragging action when the campaign is completed.
Created by Bungie (the mastermind behind Halo), Marathon had a reputation as a well-polished shooter with a refreshingly intricate storyline following a security officer’s response to a spacecraft’s mysterious distress call. At the time, it was hailed as the Macintosh’s counterpart to Doom – a comparison in which it more than held its own.
Soldier of Fortune (2000)
Built on a modified Quake II engine, Soldier of Fortune was famous for graphical representations of body dismemberment – note the exploding cranium depicted in exhibit A above. Naturally, the controversy surrounding the gore only made us want it more...
Resistance 3 (2011)
Chock full of explosive action, Resistance 3 conveys a powerful sense of desperation in the human race’s fight against the Chimera alien forces. A cavalcade of fancy weapons is an adequate solution to painting the walls red with alien insides and online multiplayer offers a chance to hone your l337 skillz. Read the full review here
Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 2 (2007)
Improvements in enemy AI made this sequel to the first Advanced Warfighter a much more polished experience, in which teammates could be usefully controlled thanks to the Crosscom 2.0 technology – if only ordering around people in real life were as easy.
Battlefield Bad Company 2 (2010)
There’s nothing more satisfying than pulling the trigger of an M95, taking down a helicopter pilot and watching the whole thing plummet to the ground in a fiery explosion of twisted metal. Featuring destructible environments, tanks, and choppers, Bad Company 2 can proudly stand shoulder to shoulder with its CoD nemesis.
Bioshock 2 (2010)
Returning to the incredibly immersive world of Rapture a whole eight years after the events of the first Bioshock, you play as a prototype Big Daddy, wielding weapons and Plasmid to destroy all that stand in your path. A multiplayer experience set just before the events of Bioshock is a nice addition to the compelling campaign.
Rainbow Six: Vegas (2006)
This trip to Vegas for the new Rainbow team is strictly business. Invaded by terrorists, the city of debauchery is entirely in the hands of your highly skilled team. A few window-smashing rappels and a couple of headshots later, it’s job done and time for a poolside cocktail back at the hotel.
Medal of Honor: Frontline (2002)
American spelling aside, Frontline’s epic portrayal of the D-Day landing from a first person perspective was supplemented by historically correct speeches and footage. One for the history buffs as well as trigger-pulling virtual soldiers, earning medals has never felt better.
Return to Castle Wolfenstein (2001)
Wolfenstein’s multiplayer experience pitted Axis and Allie teams against each other, with classes and different weapons available on each side. The campaign has you battling SS soldiers, undead beings and chemically-engineered supersoldiers – thankfully not based on a true story.
Heretic featured the ability to look up and down as well as having an interactive inventory – novel concepts for its time. The game’s soundtrack featured evil laughter and other chilling sounds that were randomly generated to make fighting hordes of undead creatures a menacing experience.