We all have our favourite games outside of the Half-Life series and after reading Blue Lightning’s introduction comment, which included a reference to an underrated FPS game, I thought it might be nice if we had a special place to do that.
I would like to you name the game, tell us a little about and then why you liked it. Would be good if you could link to the Steam page for the game but it’s not compulsory.
Don’t forget to use the new HEADING button in the comments section.
I have two to mention.
I think the game starts on Earth but moves to a space station and then back to Earth. It was released in 2003 and is a slight step up from Half-Life in graphical quality.
There’s a story similar to a classic Sci-Fi idea and plenty of voice acting. I’ll be honest and say I can’t remember must more than that.
I played it at a time before I really started to get into mods and could devout more time to actual game gaming. Can’t remember how long I took to play it but it was pretty longer – definitely felt longer than Half-Life.
It has a grungy feel to it and there’s always pelnty going on. There are even a few SP mods available for it and I used to have them on the site.
It’s currently on sale for 2.49€ which I think is a great bargin. Unfortuantely, there’s no demo for it.
Steam Page: http://store.steampowered.com/app/39670/
Steam Forum: http://forums.steampowered.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=932
Think Doom 3 but less scary. Set on Mars I think with some fun breathing emchanics, you get to run around a space base.
The story is a little cliched, but what do you expect?
Plenty of action and exploring to do.
I used to ahve the developer codes for the cheats – straight from the developer – but I lost them. In fact, I used to own this game but it’s not in my library, so I might buy it again.
It’s currently on sale for 1.24€ which is amazing. There’s a demo for it if you want to try it first.
Steam Page: http://store.steampowered.com/app/2590/
Steam Forum: http://forums.steampowered.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=328
I added both of these to my wishlist, and will likely buy them on the final day of the sale.
Hey, I actually bought that game not too long ago.
Although, the voice acting, story, enemy AI and physics are a little on the wonky side, I enjoyed the experience 🙂
The story is a bit corny, but the game mechanics are surprisingly good.
A comet carrying alien life crashes on earth. The alien life infests soldiers, taking control of them. You (and your team mate) are tasked with various missions to contain and to eventually defeat the contagion.
The game has a good shooting mechanics (bullet drop, lead the target), an inventory system, and the possibility to choose (for each mission) if you want to play it in day time or on night time.
Add to it large levels and you get the idea.
I am pretty sure I have this in my basement. I’ve never played it though.
It’s got great gameplay and a good story. There are a few parts that don’t fit with the rest of the game (such as the cut scenes the train level, nowhere else in the entire game is there a cut scene). Also features a butt-load of time travel.
I really enjoyed this game as well. It kept me focused and it was the perfect length.
Well now im playing one terrific right now, and I mean is not outside valve and even outside the graphs of HL1, im talking about:
Counter Strike Condition Zero, Deleted Scenes
http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/326.293817-Reviews-from-the-Backroom-Counter-Strike-Condition-Zero-Deleted-scenes (This link, shows a bad review to CS CZ DS, but I think is just an example of how underrated and sometimes unfair life is with some ok games, I mean this one has definitely it’s shortfalls, but anyway is just like a strange creature or a strange jewel, almost a poor unfair treated dark horse, in my op.)
Is a great game, a great kind of add-on like the oldie Op. Force is, developed by ritual, I actually don’t know why valve didn’t release a CS CZ DS2 for Source engine, that would be just awsome!!
I love the short realistic anti-terrorist missions in there, divided in an average of 3-4 maps per mission(some maps are awsome sp combat ones), is totally a single player and it has the fun of the weapons in CS1, and the environment and feeling of that old school HL1 single player experience, I think the stuff that gets closer to this one in source is definitely the CSS Hradwire mod.
I don’t know you guys, but if valve would release Deleted Scenes Source I would definitely buy it without a blink.
And well, I also don’t really know why, are not many more add-on missions or mods for this specific title, maybe because is limited to a little fan audience or so, if you know released propper mods for this great game, please LET ME KNOW!!, i’ll thank you that till I die!!
MEN OF VALOR
Is a really great vietnam title, and I dare to say is the best in a pure SP experience, i’d aprecieate so much if anyone who knows this title and also know mods for it please let me know.
they should work in a second title, this Nam title hook me up in there because is so atmospheric and has that unique great felling of the Nam war, in the 60 and early 70’s, the story is also pretty cool and cinematic.
here’s a cool descreptive review: http://www.gamespot.com/men-of-valor/reviews/men-of-valor-review-6111770/
…is a FANTASTIC FPS. Unfortunately it’s not on steam, but everyone should play it!
Hope multiplayers are allowed.. Surprisingly mine is just another Valve game, but not Ricochet 2.
Half-Life 2: Deathmatch
I thoroughly enjoy it almost on a day to day basis, very addictive once you get into it. It’s a lot faster than CS:S, most compare it to Quake, if you ever played that. It’s also a lot harder with a long but oh so fun learning curve. It’s unique since no other mp game has the gravity gun which in addition to the sp, introduces new weapon mechanics when you combine it with alternate fires and grenades.
Because Valve just copy pasted some code and maps from HL2 and released this in just 2 weeks after it, it’s got plenty of bugs which they got tired of fixing just a few years after release. Then came the controversial Orange Box update which narrowed the community even more. But all these bugs and engine changes only end up becoming part of the actual game, after being accepted as elements of normal gameplay. They also add complexity to it in the sense that you can never truly reach a point and say “I know this game in its entirety, I’m done learning it and everything about it”.
Here’s a rather long but appropriate gameplay trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ARyDjviN4w
And for those that fear it’s too competitive for their liking, hl2dm has many game modes, besides the free-for-all, team deathmatch and capture-the-flag, that allow a more laid back approach. Here’s a list of the ones I know and tried: build, co-op (very similar to fighting alongside rebels in the singleplayer), deathrun, fishing (you heard me!), jumping, puzzle, role-play and zombies (or phoneburnia).
Used to come free-to-play with the Nvidia/Ati offer for some good years, but today you can find it in the store for about 2 euros:
I agree with the recommendation of Tron 2.0 and add
to the mix. Both are more like FPS/RPG hybrids, while the latter is a follow up or prequel to Boiling Point, the first one is a real classic not only mixing FPS and RPG, but Elite style space trading and space combat as well! Not on Steam though…
Precursors is hard to find, but is an extremely ambitious RPG/FPS hybrid, with real-time space-sim elements. I’d even go so far as to say it’s Star Wars meets Mass Effect crossed with Red Faction.
Also agree with Singularity as a unique concept for a game.
Phillip mentioned me on the post header, so the least I should do is come in and explain myself 🙂
DARK MESSIAH OF MIGHT AND MAGIC
PC – 2006 / FPS-fantasy – elements of RPG/Source engine/Available on Steam / Arkane Studios, France / Publisher – Ubisoft
This game is about mid-evil times in France. It has a great story that goes along with it, and the player will interact with the story. There are a few times during the game where the player must make choices…and the choice can decide what position the player is in later in the game. Also, there are several different ending possibilities. It was overlooked in 2006 because it’s first release was full of terrible bugs (a result of Ubisoft pushing the studio) A few months later a wonderful patch was released that fixed 98% of all problems…but it was too late. The reviews had been done already, and many American reviews discounted the game, scoring it in the 70’s because of the bugs. Interestingly, most Europian reviews gave it scores in the 90’s, where it belonged.
Full body awareness is nice, I wish HL2 had it.
For combat, Dark Messiah uses a skill tree system…you earn skill points as you go along, and can spend those skill points on different abilities (theif, mage, warrior, assasian (including stealth and archery), or a combination of all or some of those), and also spend skill points to “unlock” different weapons and magic. It can be wonderfully complex, and it gives the game a tremendous replay value. I have gone through the game 16 times since 2007, and am about to start the 17th. Not the least bit bored yet.
But it is warrior combat where this game truley stands out. The melee mechanics are something that Oblivion WISH’s it had. The player with his sword, staff, or daggers, can power strike, block, uppercut, stab, lock weapons, steal oppenents weapon (with the right skill unlocked), and several other moves. Even chop off heads or impale! The melee action alone is worth the price of admission! I STILL havent seen melee like this in any other game.
After enemies in this game get injured, they begin to slow down. They limp. They lose some of their power. This natural injury progression is something I wish Half Life 2 had.
The game is linear so it doesnt get boring (like Oblivion), but still there are plenty of off-paths and dead end routes, and espicially FANTASTIC secret places which makes it FEEL non-linear. What more the game adds a vertical twist with the “rope-bow” which the player aquires early in the game. The rope bow’s arrows have a rope attached, and anything that is made of wood, the rope bows arrow will stick. Then the player climbs the rope to his destination! This gives the player the ability to go many places they are not supposed to, adding a new dimension of fun to the game. 🙂
Many traps abound, like spikes and cliffs and other things the player can use to dispatch enemies. And there is a nice array of mid-evil enemies…goblins, orcs, ghouls, cyclops, and many others. You can take your bow and arrow, dip in on a lit torch, and now you have a flaming arrow! Or from the middle onward the player can take a demon form by pushing the “v” key, and turn into a powerful demon with a long whipping tail (but it costs health). Little details like that are everywhere in this game (too many to mention).
I mentioned I “wish Valve would of learned from them”…what I meant is I had hoped Valve (for Ep2) would of incorporated a few of the things we see in Dark Messiah since Arkane uses Valve’s own Source engine…mabye the injury progression, or mabye (like the rope bow) the ability to use the crowbar to hook it and pull yourself up, or mabye full body awareness or a host of other things. Instead Valve used it’s resources on HDR, which I keep turned off because I find it annoying and useless. (my opinion only).
Bottom line with Dark Messiah you cant go wrong. Available on Steam for a cheap price too! I rank it 100/100.
Oh I forgot to post a steam link to Dark Messiah
It’s on sale for 6.99! Plus there is a free demo if you like.
This game is just amazing.
The sun have grown hotter and all living things are forced to live underground. And of course, if everyone is underground, so are the baddies and there is nowhere to run.
You start with the classic. A dude in prison with memory loss. But this game does it so well, I didn’t notice it at first.
At least I think its hard to explain what’s so great about it. Just get it on steam.
Call of Cthulhu – Dark Corneres of The Earth
If you ever heard or read H.P Lovecrafts amazing books, you are gonna love this game.
Its about a unknown cult of “fish-men” who worship all kinds of crazy gods. You are Jack Walters, a regular cop wich gets a orninary case; Find out more about a robbery in Insmoth. But it turns out to be so much more. Jack begins to hallucinate. At least he thinks he is. He sees things we couldn’t even dream of.
I’m not going to spoil it all but this game is freaky and amazing. PLAY IT.
There is more unknown FPSs but these 2 have a special place in my heart.
And Yes, I do enjoy being a nerd.
I definitely want to try that someday is available on steam.
Wow, sure u have play this awsome mod for HL1 http://philg.home.xs4all.nl/about.htm If not try it please is just cool!
Arx Fatalis is definitely an understated classic RPG. I played it several months ago, and it still holds up.
Call of Cthulhu is an extremely challenging game, but it seriously gives me the willies in certain parts, like the very first escape scene.
SiN Episodes: Emergence
Pretty cool game, it’s a little short and sadly there will never be more episodes. But the game is very fun and action packed.
Star Wars: Republic Commando
A very immersive FPS game, very good squad based mechanics. Also the inventory of the jelly screen view popularized by Call of Duty.
I also agree on Call of Cthulhu, very good game if you can get past the bugs. I wish Bethesda would do an HD remake of it.
I LIVE. AGAIN.
This game is disturbing, and that’s how I like it. At the time of it’s release, this game got good reviews but I don’t think it has enough attention like games like Duke Nukem 3D and Doom. Speaking of Duke Nukem 3D, this uses a slightly modified Build engine and was developed mostly by 3D Realms and finished by Monolith. The controls are kind of weird. Since the source code has not been released, no source ports can be made. I suggest using bmouse to fix the mouse aiming.
Holy Balls of Steel, this game was awesome! This got mediocre to terrible reviews. I think the press took this game to seriously, this game is just about having fun. Sure, it isn’t amazing, but it wasn’t trying to be. This game couldn’t ever live up to 14 years of hype, but it was still really damn fun.
I know what you’re thinking, but I don’t even like Video Games. This game is like Metroid + Grand Theft Auto + Duke Nukem 3D + General Insanity. This game also got bad reviews and again I think the press just took this game too seriously. It’s a non linear (the expansion was more linear) game where you can do what you want. In this game, you can piss on someone, make them puke, cut off their head while they are puking, watch as their puke comes out of the hole where their head used to be, then go to someone else, cut off their legs, then get on top of them while they try to crawl away only using their arms, then shove a gun up a cats ass ,use the cat as a silencer to shoot the bodies and then piss on the bodies again.
Hm I haven’t played any shooter in years besides Half-Life so I can only recommend old shooters which I often played as a youngster.
Chasm – The Rift:
Don’t really ask me for the story because I can’t remember it but back then this game was very good and also rather unknown. All I remember is that you fight in Duke Nukem style against Aliens or high tech enemies. The game had flying monsters spiders and many other things and I believe it used the same engine that also was used in Duke Nukem 3D many shooters used that engine back then.
Another interesting game which even received some Addons and sequels. You and your buddy were were fighting against all sorts of people & animals. The game had dark humor as well as many cliches.
That game was one of my favorites back then. You’re a GI going on many dangerous missions in Vietnam. The best part in that game was probably the fact that you had some soldiers following you and medics like we have em in Opposing Force. Even though they were stupid as hell it was nice having them with you. The music and entire audio was really cool. In 1 map you stormed a beach while planes bombarded the coast that was awesome script work back then.
These days of course every free fps engine will show better results than in that oldie.. 😛
Starship Troopers FPS:
Finally a newer FPS released in 2005. While this game was underrated for reason bad story telling stupid AI comrades it still was a great shooter never the less. The graphics were ok and I had personal fun fighting against all sorts of different arachnoid hordes. Every weapon or alternate fire attack was better or worse vs a certain type of bug and that was really interesting. As for you story you basically just replayed some of the movies but there were also many new places to discover of course. If you like the movie Starship Troopers and you never heard about this game you may want to check it out. Shouldn’t cost much these days. Back then I actually returned it to the seller cause 50 bucks were to much for a game like that. But 5bucks should be totally fine.
There’s also a nice Starship Troopers RTS game very unknown but x10 better than the shooter was so check that out as well:
Starship Troopers: Terran Ascendancy
In there you play beyond the movie. So basically you replay the events based on the entire original book.
Shogo – Mobile Armor Division:
Now that one was an epic shooter. You were fighting as infantry soldier and in huge mechs too. I can’t remember much about the story but the missions were very challenging and refreshing. Each mission required a new game approach. The shooter was fully voice acted and played in a futuristic world were 2 factions fought for domination. Released back in 1998 same as Half-Life.
This game was for the Game Cube, and basically you were a ghost who could take over people when they get frightened. It was pretty boss but got some terrible reviews.
[/Not on PC]
Thief – Sure, it’s a First Person Sneaker / Stealth game, but it’s also an FPS overall. I’m still in awe of the original. The levels were exceptionally well-designed and becoming a master of the shadows and making decisions before acting on them– It’s such an amazing game that while critically acclaimed, has never quite gotten the attention it deserves.
Brink – I know there are a ton of team-based multiplayer games out there, and Brink was only moderately well-received, but I enjoy the pacing of this game so much. I do wish there was a proper single-player & coop campaign, rather than the “with bots” modes they have, but still the core gameplay feels so damn good to me.
Generally underrated, though it has since acquired a bit of cult status, this game mostly focuses on First Person Parkour and doesn’t actually require you to shoot.
Amazing art, sound and visuals and overall great gameplay.
This is in no way underrated. It may have received a tenth of its hype worth but over at steamgifts there’s thousands who would want this game.
Meaning they don’t have it yet and don’t want to pay the 10 dollars/euros (5 now on sale) it costs now?
But you are right, perhaps the cult status has caught up with it enough to call it underrated.
The Marathon Trilogy (1994-1996)
I grew up on this game, so to speak, so my opinion may be a little biased, but this was one of the best FPS game series I’ve ever played, if not THE best ever. It was an early Bungie title, before the Halo series caused them to take off (parts of Halo are in direct homage to Marathon). First developed and released at about the same time as Doom, but I thought it was miles better, in part because, aside from superior graphics, it included several at-the-time new or newish features that are now standard fare in the FPS genre, including:
-Reloadable Weapons (some had alt-fire functions, also pretty new at the time)
-Friendly NPC allies
-A depletable oxygen bar that reacts to vacuum or underwater environments
-Wall-mounted health recharging stations (seems like they inspired the HEV/Health chargers from HL)
But for me, all this really paled in comparison to its story, which was told entirely through reading computer terminal messages and entries (voice acting wasn’t really present in the games except for some throwaway lines randomly shouted by human npcs). The story was, in my opinion, much better than Halo, and was obviously well-planned and composed.
However, it was (at first) only released on the Macintosh, which is why maybe 100 people around the world have heard of the games, and 50 of them were because I told them, haha.
The good news is that there is a multi-platform port of the entire trilogy available for free (just google it, it’s on an engine called Aleph One).
And if all that isn’t enough reason to give the series a try, Adam Foster of Minerva/Someplace Else fame has cited in the past Marathon as an inspiration, and it definitely shows in his work. Highly recommended!
I second Shogo and Chaser. I’m not sure if these are underrated enough but add Alien vs. Predator Gold Edition (Classic 2000 now). If you want to torture yourself, play the last level waterfall saving every single marine throughout (think if it were possible to save all the Black Mesa scientists), that was really really challenging. Another oldie but goodie is the 1st Red Faction, as in just Red Faction. Enjoyed the many vehicles. Get both on Steam now for $10.00.
Pretty good FPS that gives you the ability to pause, slow, and rewind time.
They had a railgun type of weapon that was cool to stake dudes to walls and such. Good fun!
No need for intros on this one…it’s a fine enough FPS.
I enjoyed the tactical, stealth feel of this game. Each kill was rewarding.
WHEEL OF TIME
I cannot get this game to work in Win7 for the life of me…if I could I’d play it today.
NO ONE LIVES FOREVER 1 & 2
Funny stuff, and the action was great!
Not sure if it’s underrated or I never see anyone play it…
STALKER: Call of Pripyat
This still remains one of my favourite all time games.
The mixture of sci-fi, horror and russians really makes this game really interesting when it’s put into the open-world environment the game uses
Realms of the Haunting
I don’t know why this didn’t get rave reviews, it’s a personal favourite, cult status in fact, there are websites and Fb pages about it. If ever a game deserved to be remade, modernised and sequeled…this’d be it.
Definitely Chasm – The Rift, No One Lives Forever series (NOLF 1+2) and Shadow Warrior (SW).
SW (1997) was made with the Build Engine by 3D Realms whom also made Duke Nukem 3D.
It has Asian “shooting star” Lo Wang as hero and because him being a Japanese it has an Asian touch but with nice humor, action and neat leveldesign with kicky weapons.
It wasn’t that popular as Duke 3D, but still fun to play! I remember there was a 3Dfx patch later on for that game 🙂 It’s underrated in my eyes and also not very well known.
NOLF series (2000+2002) should be known by most of the players, besides part 2 is already 10 years old now. The NOLF series wasn’t that underrated but somehow it wasn’t the (expected?) Bestseller although both games are simply great and unique with very very cool design and gadgets, lot of humor and of course action en masse!
Chasm (1997) is one of the old Quake-like shooters, it’s dark, sometimes creepy and only consists of plenty of action, as good as no puzzles but that wasn’t the intention anyway.
Altho 23-down wrote it uses the Duke Nukem 3D engine I’m not sure, I think it’s some unique engine.
There’s also an even more nice official Addon for this game, containing 3 new levels, new graphics, enemies etc.
Only the keyboard gameplay was a bit weird as there was no jumping if I’m right (?) Nonetheless, worth playing! And indeed underrated.
Shadow Warrior was awesome
You no miss with Lo Wang… BOOYA! 😀
One game I really enjoyed was KISS Psycho Circus: Nightmare Child
The game’s story revolves around a KISS tribute band, who suddenly receive superhuman powers.
You can get the demo here: GameFront
I think I played this but not for long 😛 is this where you play 4 different characters?
Gamefront describes it well:
Its a game about two factions fighting over an over-water city.
There used to be 2000 people playing it at a time once in May of 2011, now its dropped down to about…23?
It wasn’t so well received because it was buggy and built up a lot of anticipation. I still think its a fun game because it has a sort of feel to it, an aura that makes me play it so much
I love its graphics, and the tower defense style that it has. I just sometimes wish it had some more weapons…but there are plenty of DLC maps and towers so its pretty fun once in a while.
It’s about a SF squad in vietnam war near the Cambodian border. I think it’s a really realistic game in terms of weapons and gameplay and keeps you on your toes the whole game.
I bought this game during the Steam QuakeCon sale for $9.99.
This game is really amazing. I loved everything about it. On full AA/AF and V-Sync, this game is truly gorgeous. Best played with an XBOX controller. Possibly the best looking game I’ve played. So much love and attention to detail has gone in to the game. Great variety of environments and gamestyles.
Truly one of the best games I’ve ever played. Unfortunately the ending is horrendous.
Here are some of the games that I feel are underrated (and FREE)
Stranded 2 (FPS) A fun and somewhat realistic 3D survival game where the player is stranded on an island and must find a way off it. The graphics are rather simple which can give the impression that its a very shallow game, but its not. You will have to fend for yourself, in the beginning you will get some freebies like juice and some meat but after that you must find a source of water as well as food. You can hunt animals like lions and monkeys as well as collect and grow fruits and crops. You can even do some mining! It also has item crafting and combining too. What makes it realistic is not the graphics but the constant need to stay alive, you always need to eat and drink every day and still make a plan on how to get out of the island. It also has a island editor so you can make your own islands!
Trascendence (2D space exploration, trading and combat game) Inspired by games like Nethack and Star Control, transcendence is fantastic freeware space sim where the player must reach the core of the universe under the guidance (and protection) of the Domina ( a God), it plays very much like Escape Velocity, but (IMHO) is better quality. You must choose 1 of 3 ships each with its own capabilities and must travel through various star systems to get to the core, the star systems themselves are actually randomly generated which means it has a lot of replay value! There is also a large modding community.
Ok I was reading through this and I thought this game should be mentioned.
This game is a first person “point and click” but don’t take this the wrong way! The pictures are very well made and experience is well worth it. you go through several areas to solve certain my boggling puzzles to (what I remember) stop a certain person. Riven is my all time favorite and when you finish the game the ending is AWESOME. All I say now is PLAY THIS GAME!!! You wont regret it if you like a good adventure! Check out the pictures and buy the game here: http://store.steampowered.com/app/63610/
I played very few games outside the Half Life series (and other Valve games).
One of my favorite underrated games was Strife. Strife is a 1996 FPS game using the old Doom engine. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strife_%28video_game%29 It was an underrated game because it was using the outdated doom engine.
The second game is Counter Strike Condition Zero – Counter Strike Condition Zero Deleted Scenes. I don’t know why it was underrated, I like it because it has a big graphical improvement over Counter Strike 1.6, and it has a nice singleplayer campaign.
Harmony, probably the best freeware FPS I’ve ever played. It’s built on the Doom engine but it is not a mod, you don’t need to own Doom to play it. It got some recognition in the Doom community, even winning a Cacoward, but it is sadly obscure outside the community. If you like classic first person shooters built on the Doom engine, BUILD engine or other similar engines, you need to play Harmony.
I also second Blood, Dark Messiah of Might and Magic and Chasm: The Rift, along with many others already mentioned. There are a few I haven’t played (I haven’t played either of Phillip’s suggestions) so I’ll try to get those soon (I always get physical copies if there is one).
I’d like to thank everybody here for great suggestions!
[Comment edited to remove snide content]
And here’s a couple from me:
Soldier of Fortune – amazing, gory, fast-paced action, some of the most powerful rifles and shotguns ever to be put in an FPS
Soldier of Fortune 2: Double Helix – this one takes a more tactical approach and require patience, if you try to play it like the first game, which encourages running and gunning, you’re not going to have easy time here. The weapons are still amazing and the gore is even more exaggerated
Star Trek Voyager: Elite Force and Star Trek Elite Force 2 – The best Star Trek games ever made, period! Amazing storytelling, these games make you feel like you’re a part of a Star Trek episode.
Powerslave (on PC) – an underrated Build Engine game, with an ancient Egypiptian setting. It has the most intricate and complex level design among the Build games. If you like solving map puzzles and getting occasionally lost, then this game is for you. This game is also the closest thing to what would an Indiana Jones FPS be like.
I edited your comment to remove the shit. You’re welcome to participate in the community, even on a 9 year old thread, but don’t be a dick.