Stuff's Best Games Ever: The 15 best FPS games of all time

10) Battlefield 2 (2005)

Born out of an incredibly successful mod scene, which saw more players dive-bombing Iraqi insurgents in the user-made "Desert Combat" than assaulting the Normandy beaches in the WW2 game it was based on, Battlefield 1942's successor was bigger, browner, and a lot more modern.

Massive maps opened up battles to 64 players at a time, and introduced a persistent progression system to the series for the first time. Want the best kit? Then you're going to have to put in time on the front lines, soldier.

9) Wolfenstein 3D (1992)

Doom gets most of the love, but id Software's Wolfenstein 3D came a year earlier and really established the framework for the modern first-person shooter. As badass B.J. Blazkowicz, you'd haunt the hallways pumping pixelated Nazis full of lead, and despite the rudimentary graphics of the era, damn did it feel great. In fact, it still feels great: the franchise continues on today, still with B.J. but also with a lot more modern flash.

8) Quake (1996)

After a double dose of Doom, id Software made the huge pivot towards Quake, its first shooter to use a proper 3D engine – and the results were spectacular. The grim, gothic look was massively appealing, despite the very sharp angles everywhere, while the Nine Inch Nails (!) soundtrack was even more brilliant. And Quake is where FPS games made a bigger leap into online action, and the entries that followed pushed that point even harder.

7) Counter-Strike (2000)

This may not be the greatest team-based FPS ever made, but it's easily the most tactical. Counter-Strike has evolved over the years, over multiple iterations, but the objective has never changed: terrorists plant bombs, while counter-terrorists try to stop them.

Sounds simple, but incredible levels of communication, map knowledge and tactics are needed to succeed at the top level. As much fun to watch as it is to play, there's a reason Counter-Strike commands some of the biggest payouts in all of esports today.

6) GoldenEye 007 (1997)

Has there ever been a better split-screen gaming experience than GoldenEye 007? Obviously not.

The best Bond game ever was a superb and influential first-person shooter for many reasons, not least through its introduction of stealth elements, its innovative variety of weapons and its excellent, atmospheric single-player mode. But it was the local multiplayer that everyone remembers, and with good reason: gathering three mates round the telly and spending hours shooting each other to bits has never again been such fun.     

If you want proof of this game's impact, consider that it briefly made the N64 the console of choice for all gamers, not just those who liked colourful platformers featuring cartoon characters. Truly groundbreaking.