As much as the gaming industry loves new and shiny, it loves nostalgia, so here are some cult classics you’ve probably overlooked.
In an ever-moving industry, it’s easy for even high-profile games to get lost in the shuffle and be forgotten. Sometimes it’s deserved (Anthem, anyone?) but sometimes it’s such a shame because a truly great game ends up being unfairly relegated to history.
Luckily, while the gaming industry loves the new and the shiny, it also loves nostalgia, which ultimately means that these old games earning their recognition as “cult classics”. So the next time you fancy an old game, instead of going back to Skyrim for thousands of times, why not try one of these gems instead?
Sometimes it’s hard to top an undisputed king of the genre. As for the hero shooter, Surveillance firmly won this war before anything else could have an impact. There were several casualties along the way, Born Warrior is the most important, but Offenders is perhaps the least well served. Although he had the makeup of a hero shooter, his style was different enough to stand out in a major way. The way the movement fueled the fight was smooth as butter, and if he had room to breathe, maybe history would consider him more favorably.
The reason asura’s fury perhaps forgotten is due to its overwhelming nature. Described as an interactive anime, this game threw you all over the place. The gameplay changed from a beat ’em up style to an on-rails shooter, which are two genres considered pretty dated in 2012. However, the action was jaw-dropping and the combat was ridiculous. You never knew what was coming next and, if you play it, you will definitely never forget it.
The slow and sad death of Evolve is a story for the ages. It burst onto the scene with such promise, but a glut of DLC caused opinion to turn against it, then it went free, then it was shut down in 2018. It’s a shame because few long after Evolve’s death, his final death, Dead by daylightt took off, proving that the asymmetric PvP formula could work. It makes you wonder how Evolve would have done had it been released just a year or two later.
It’s not so surprising that Binary domain was overlooked as he came out just as cover gunner fatigue was beginning. Uncharted 3 and Mass Effect 3 both came out around the same time, so there was simply no room in the public consciousness for an unknown IP address. However, coming back to it now, without that context, is a fun experience. It’s nothing earth-shattering, but it was as good as any cover shooter of the era, so worth a look if you’re a fan of the genre.
Detangle is a sad indictment of how even the best linear single-player games quickly lose their relevance. Unravel was praised by critics and consumers alike when it launched, and it even did well enough to get a sequel in 2018, but it faded from memory in an instant. The era of live service games has changed our perception of what’s good, and if something doesn’t stick around for months, we think it wasn’t worth it, but it’s important to remember just how sweet a short, single-player experience can be.
When conversations about old underrated games arise, Alpha Protocol is still one of the first games mentioned. That would surely disqualify it from a list of forgotten games, but the fact is that most people who rave about its underrated status haven’t played it themselves. It’s one of those games where it’s fashionable to agree that it’s underrated even if you don’t know much about it. It’s a shame because the story of a spy thriller with stealth shooter action is quite an adventure.
Despite what it seems from the outside, shooters have never really been about guns. Sure, Call of Duty the pros might know all the names and how much damage they cause, but do they care about the guns themselves? Of course not, they just like to shoot them, and that’s fair enough. However, Black make sure you realize how ridiculously powerful and dangerous guns can be. Shots sound like thunder even on the base pistol, enemies are knocked back when hit, and even buildings can be dented by your explosions.
If you were into gaming in the mid 2000s you’ve probably seen Darwinia at some point, the voxel graphics combined with the weird gameplay may have made an impression on you back then, but not enough for it remains for decades. . Looking back, it’s a fun throwback to when real-time strategy games were better than ever. There’s something oddly hypnotic about watching little stick men fight off low-poly bugs representing viruses. It’s even on Steam now, so you have no excuse.
An online FPS with parkour gameplay and different classes with slightly different abilities. Yeah, it looks like we’re talking Apex: Legends, is not it ? But no, it’s 2011 Edge. Arena shooters were a market in their own right in 2011. Call of Duty covered the brand and smaller maps, while Battlefield focused on much larger maps and on a larger scale. Poor Brink just couldn’t get off the ground, which is a requirement for parkour. That’s not even the last time this happened; titan fall 2 Say hello.
There’s a good premise behind this game, but unfortunately if anyone remembers it, it’s probably just because of the protagonist’s horrible Irish accent. If you can look past that, you can cry time liberating occupied France in WWII as a race car driver/parkour expert. In an alternate timeline, this could have been Assassin’s Creed before Assassin’s Creed. Alas, it’s just The saboteur.
Written by Ryan Woodrow on behalf of GLHF.