Posted on Tuesday, December 25 @ 11:30:05 Eastern by Jonathan_Leack
10. Rome: Total War
Why battle with 100 units when you can battle with thousands? That’s the basic principle that Rome: Total War followed. Commanding hoplites and trebuchets into an opposing civilization’s territory before bombarding its cities was fully brought to life in 3D. What made Rome: Total War such a standout game was how well everything was presented. There was a world map where important strategy would take place before the advent of sizeable battles, and once you became commander of thousands of troops, it was hard to go back to the smaller scale of other RTS games.
SimCity was one of the first games to be truly addicting. The intricacies of turning a block of land into a sprawling city were realized with Will Wright’s second creation, a game that would go on to receive overwhelming acclaim in 1989. It eventually paved the way for future Sim games, as well as many strategy titles that would later be inspired by its creative qualities.
8. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
It was only a matter of time before gaming would properly meet the award-winning Star Wars universe, and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic did it with passion. It featured all of the IP’s greatest qualities including locations, characters, and intense sci-fi battles. It championed huge RPG worlds backed by voice-acting, and was a grand undertaking by none other than BioWare. All future Star Wars titles are now burdened with having to match the brilliance of KOTOR.
7. System Shock
The fact that it’s been hailed as the inspiration behind BioShock and Deus Ex says it all: System Shock was something special. It was the pioneer for what would become the sci-fi horror genre, a group of games with cold, desolate environments and advanced technologies. Its environments were laden with intricate puzzles, horrifying moments, and catchy electronic music.
6. Sid Meier’s Civilization IV
One minute you’re developing your agrarian empire; the next minute you realize you should have been in bed four hours ago. There’s something to be said about a game that draws you in so far that you forget about your existence. Civilization’s roots began to grow 14 years earlier but it wasn’t until the fourth game that its formula was perfected. Advancing through eras and growing an empire while competing for resources isn’t just a challenge, it’s an addiction.