Question of the Week: Paved the Way?

by: Randy -
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Paved the way?

It's not necessary to come up with the origin of species and argue which game spawned an entire genre.  But we're curious about which games may have paved the way (or at least made it safe) for other later-released games.  Did Boom Blox prime us for all-out strategic destruction in Red Faction: Guerrilla?  Did Halo draw up the topographical blueprints for the Citadel in Mass Effect?  Would Tiger Woods 10 be here if it weren't for Tiger Woods 09?  Forget that last one.

What's one game that helped pave the way for a later game?

Charles Husemann:  It's probably a bit hard to see it now but the long lasting impact of Ultima IV is still being felt.  Sure we had RPG's before then but Ultima IV was the first one to force players to follow a particular morale code in order to complete the game.  That meant no stealing, no looting, and watching how you treated people in the game.  Of course you could game some of the attributes of the Avatar but the game really did push you into a way of thinking as your character was the example that everyone in Britannia looked up to.  (Currently Playing:  Red Faction: Guerrilla, Peggle (iTouch), and hopefully Prototype)

Randy KalistaRome: Total War wasn't built in a day.  The Creative Assembly's battlefield RTS par excellence stands upon the pauldrons of EA's 1990 masterpiece, Centurion: Defender of RomeCenturion rocked the 2D overhead map of the Known World, it rocked the real-time battles, and it rocked armadas of triremes, quinqueremes, and galleons some 20 years before Empire: Total War finally brought naval battles to present-day standards.  In Centurion, there was also one-on-one gladitorial matches in the Arena and chariot races in the Circus Romana -- things you can only build in the background in a Total War game.  Plus, after allying with Egypt, Centurion opened up opportunities to seduce Cleopatra.  It was incomparably the hottest thing I'd ever seen in a videogame.  I was 12.  (Currently Playing:  Alabaster (interactive fiction), The Sims 3, EVE Online)

Nathan Murray:  The grand daddy of console 3D platformers is Mario 64. There's no denying that this game sired other great titles such as Ratchet and Clank, Crash Bandicot, and Donkey Kong 64, and Banjo Kazooie. Not only did Mario 64 serve as the catalyst of the revolution of platformers from the 2D to the 3D but also start a trend for game titles that spand the entire lifespan of the Nintendo 64 console. (Currently Playing: Mass Effect, Final Fantasy Tactics, and Rock Band 2)
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