Era can be defined as a console generation, a decade, one specific year, whatever you want. I’d encourage you to give a list of your favourite games from the generation of choice and why it was the best to you. Nostalgia is a totally viable reason too.

I’ll go first. For me, the 360 era is my GOAT. As someone in their 20s, I grew up with the 360 so nostalgia is definitely a big factor. But on top of that, I still feel like the games during that time were some of the best we’ve had. 2011 alone was a fantastic year, with Dark Souls, Skyrim, Portal 2 and many more great games. I was going to list out my favourite games from 2005-2013 but I love so many it would be far too long of a post.

I’d love to hear some of you talk about your favourite time period of games too, whether it’s agreeing with my choice or giving different opinions

  • @[email protected]
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    312 months ago

    LAN parties. I remember the first time I could connect two PC together. It was Doom, with a serial-to-serial cable. We were two players on the same fucking map. It was awesome!

    Then coax cable networks with friends. We used to have two or three different networks during a LAN party since you could not disconnect the coax cable to add a player without stopping the current games. The players arrived later would plug a new network just for them, and launch a game waiting the first players to finish theirs.

    • @the_ramzay
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      52 months ago

      Yep, we made LAN between three 5 floor houses and we have eventually 10 people in it. That was AWESOME! We are have played: Warcraft 3, cs1.6, quake 3 arena, C&C Generals/Red Alert, Diablo 2, Titan Quest, Disciples II, Heroes of might and Magic III, and freaking World of Warcraft on our private server!

    • codOPM
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      42 months ago

      Oh man that must’ve been a great time. Very jealous you got to experience that being brand new!

  • @[email protected]
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    302 months ago

    The Greatest Era of gaming was when I was between 12 and 22. And this is true for everyone no matter what their age is now. Between 12 and 22 I had enough time and energy to game all night and still go to school and none of life’s problems were stopping me

    • codOPM
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      32 months ago

      You know what, that’s a great answer. I think you probably hit the nail on the head

  • ℕ𝕖𝕞𝕠
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    242 months ago

    The present. I can use emulation to play all my old favorites, often for free, and there’s never been such a rich plethora of indie and studio games available.

    • codOPM
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      72 months ago

      Very logical answer. What are some of your old favourites you like to emulate?

      • ℕ𝕖𝕞𝕠
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        132 months ago

        NES: River City Ransom, Crystalis, Zelda ][

        SNES: Super Mario World, Chrono Trigger, Link to the Past

        GB: Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, Minish Cap, Tetris

        DOS: The Quest for Glory series, ZZT

        • Refurbished Refurbisher
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          If you haven’t played Terranigma, you should do that. It’s on the level of Chrono Trigger in how good it is.

          It was never released in North America, so get the PAL ROM along with the NTSC (60Hz) patch from RHDN

          • ℕ𝕖𝕞𝕠
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            32 months ago

            I did play that on emulator a decade or so ago. It’s part of the same series as Illusion of Gaia, right? I don’t really remember Terranigma that well, maybe it’s time for a replay.

        • codOPM
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          32 months ago

          Great choices! Some classics there for sure

      • ℕ𝕖𝕞𝕠
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        22 months ago

        Adding a separate comment to add, if you’ve never played it, Super Mario X was a very fun, apparently not-entirely-legal fangame made my Redigit (who went on to create Terraria). He took it down at Nintendo’s demand, but you can still find a copy.

        • codOPM
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          22 months ago

          I’ll look into it, thanks for the info

  • @[email protected]
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    202 months ago

    Around the turn of the millennium. Games were designed for offline use and had way more immersive campaigns, were shipped by and large ready and bug-free, and so were add-on campaigns.

    And since graphics were not as refined as they are now, additional efforts were placed on gameplay.

    My top list (by release year):

    • Diablo II (1996)
    • Dungeon Keeper (1997)
    • Half-Life (1998)
    • Thief: The Dark Project (1998)
    • Thief 2 (1999)
    • Dungeon Keeper 2 (1999)
    • Heroes of Might & Magic 3 (1999)
    • Gothic II (2002)

    Never had a console and don’t get along with controllers whatsoever, so those are all referring to the PC versions.

      • @[email protected]
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        32 months ago

        I’ve recently replayed Thief and Thief 2, they still hold up well!

        Tried Gothic II, and unfortunately the controls feel very clunky today. Or maybe it’s just me. But somehow third person view doesn’t really work for me anymore.

    • codOPM
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      22 months ago

      I recently picked up a few of those games on my pc. Wanting to try Gothic II out soon ish, and Thief 1 & 2 as well soon

      • @[email protected]
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        32 months ago

        For Thief and Gothic II there are unofficial graphic mods out there that improve things massively. They basically replace the original models with those from Thief II and Gothic 3, and also fix some bugs.

        https://www.ttlg.com/forums/showthread.php?t=152429 - that’s a user made campaign for Thief, the thread also has links to all the patches and updates. The campaign is also absolutely great with overwhelmingly massive maps, but you should play the original first.

        • codOPM
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          22 months ago

          Awesome, thanks for that! Appreciate it

      • 2xsaiko
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        22 months ago

        I really hope you enjoy Thief 1/2! The two are some of my top games of all time and the second one is after 25 years still the best pure stealth game.

        As was already said, do make sure to install TFix or T2Fix (depending on the game) to get widescreen/high resolution renderer and just modern hardware support in general.

      • @[email protected]
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        22 months ago

        Gothic 1 is my all time favourite RPG. 2 is everything a sequel “should” be: bigger, some mechanics improvements without losing the core, and (with the expansion) callbacks to 1 and familiar characters. And yet it also lost some of the atmosphere. This is why 1 will always be my favourite.

        Despite that, it’s still a great game, and many people’s favourite. I hope you’ll enjoy it.

  • @[email protected]
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    192 months ago

    The era of SCUMM. Point and click adventures were awesome. Day of the Tentacle, Full Throttle, Leisure Suit Larry, Quest for Glory series, Indiana Jones and the fate of Atlantis.

    • @lunarul
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      How is Monkey Island missing from the list? Those games were the peak of SCUMM.

      • @[email protected]
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        22 months ago

        I know, I did try playing them with dosbox years later but I didn’t know anyone that had them to borrow the discs so I hadn’t played them back in the day like all the ones I named.

        • @[email protected]
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          22 months ago

          Scummvm is much better than the old native interpreter. And the Amiga versions are obviously better than dos though any one should work.

    • @[email protected]
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      32 months ago

      Hell yea, Indy Atlantis is absolute peak… then again so is most of lucasarts point&click adventure games.

      Man I wish the teased sequel for atlantis was actually made :/

  • Refurbished Refurbisher
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    172 months ago

    The 90s era of gaming, extending to the early 2000s. SNES, Genesis, PC Engine, N64, PS1, PS2, GameCube.

    It was the era before the Internet and video gaming became extremely linked. The sheer number of classics that still hold up today, even compared to modern games, are very numerous.

    • codOPM
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      72 months ago

      There’s lots of late 90’s-early 2000’s answers here. You’re definitely not alone in that thought

      • @lunarul
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        2 months ago

        Add one more here. Some of the greatest games came out in that period.

        I made before a list of the top 10 games that impacted me the most and a large part are from that period. In no particular order:

        • Worms (particularly Worms World Party)
        • The Settlers II
        • Master of Orion II
        • Heroes of Might and Magic (particularly the first 3)
        • Phantasmagoria
        • WWF WrestleMania
        • Little Big Adventure
        • Monkey Island (especially 1-3)
        • Dizzy (all games in the series)
        • Jet Set Willy
        • Refurbished Refurbisher
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          22 months ago

          The best thing about this reply is that literally none of those games are on my list, since I haven’t played any of them (except for a Flash clone of Worms as a kid). That just goes to show the sheer amount of quality gaming that there was.

          My list is moreso comprised of console games. In no particular order, and includes some later indie games:

          • Chrono Trigger (GOAT, ranked number 1 above all the rest of these. Fantastic story, gameplay, music, pacing, etc. I haven’t played any other game as polished as this one)
          • Terranigma (A surprisingly deep and philosophical game for the time, even compared to other great JRPGs of the same era, or of any era)
          • Yoshi’s Island (just raw fun)
          • Super Mario 64 (also just raw fun)
          • Majora’s Mask (Surprisingly deep and emotional for a Zelda game)
          • Silent Hill 1, 2, and 3 (2 in particular opened my eyes to actually being able to feel emotions for the first time)
          • Super Meat Boy (Addiction: the video game)
          • The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth (Crack: the video game)
          • OMORI (another fantastic and emotional game, almost on the level of Silent Hill 2, but replay value isn’t very high IMO)
          • A Link to the Past (Just raw fun, but in Zelda form)
          • Guitar Hero 1, 2, and 3 (I was especially involved in the customs scene back then)
          • Final Fantasy VI (A fantastic story in general)
          • Super Smash Bros (the series as a whole)
          • @lunarul
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            22 months ago

            I didn’t have any consoles, so couldn’t play a lot of those games. But on PC (and on 8-bit computer before that), I played hundreds of games. There were no copyright laws in my country when I was a kid and my dad got everything he could get his hands on. In the 8-bit era he collected over 40 cassette tapes (8-10 games on each). Then when we got the PC there were boxes and boxes of floppy disks (I remember Need for Speed was on over 30 disks). Then CDs came out and I remember one CD that had 200 games on it. And as my dad collected, I tried every single one of them.

            That just goes to show the sheer amount of quality gaming that there was.

            I made that top 10 list years ago from some silly Facebook game that was going around at the time. The hardest part was picking just 10. My initial list had about 70 games on it.

              • @lunarul
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                22 months ago

                Yeah, I remember when I first got ZSNES and suddenly I had access hundreds of games I wasn’t able to play before. Played through Super Mario RPG, spent so much time in Harvest Moon, and finally played the first Final Fantasy games and Legend of Zelda.

        • @Jarix
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          12 months ago

          Could not play master of orion II

          Played birth of the federation before i even heard of master of orion and it ruined it lol

      • @[email protected]
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        32 months ago

        I’m guessing a lot of people grew up in the late 90s to early 2000s, so it’s largely nostalgia.

        • @[email protected]
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          2 months ago

          It’s not just that. 2023 was a very good year for gaming, right? A lot of the heavy hitters last year were from long-running series. Look and see how many of those series had either their genesis or consensus fan favorite entries in that time period.

          Not only that, Steam, Unreal Engine, e-sports, the mainstreaming of game mods, and even AAA development itself all trace back to innovations from that time. Historically, it’s a massively important time period for video games.

          • @[email protected]
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            12 months ago

            As is the late 70s and early 80s with arcades, or the start of home consoles, or high fidelity 3d gaming in the 2010s (Xbox 360 and on, Nintendo Switch). Or my particular favorite, the rise of Linux gaming starting in 2013 (Steam for Linux launch) to the release of the Steam Deck.

            So why is the late 90s and early 2000s so highly represented here vs those other eras? I think it’s because of nostalgia, that’s around the time when the likely demographic of Lemmy would be getting into games (i.e. they’re old enough to remember the Internet before the last 10-ish years and be mad enough to leave Reddit, but not so old that they’re interested in such things).

            So that’s my hypothesis as to why that era is so popular in this thread.

  • @CleoTheWizard
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    152 months ago

    I loved the PS2 era of gaming a lot. This may be a controversial take, but the PS2 era did not last long enough.

    Everything about the aesthetics of the games that the PS2 produced were excellent. In my opinion, this is the point when low fidelity and high quality assets overlapped just enough to make games more comprehensible to their players. That enabled a lot of innovation that the PS3/360 era handled entirely differently. Forget an era, the PS2 is the last part of an entire age of gaming that delineates what I’m referring to.

    The PS2 was a huge turning point in what games were and could be in 3D. Prior to this, many games were abstract and the characters were a lump of polygons. With the PS2, this began to change. So we began to get games that our minds had to do a lot of interpreting but could see reality through. Nowadays, I’d argue that your mind does less interpreting and so the resulting picture has glaring inaccuracies.

    It also helped that ps2 was primarily played on CRTs or at least plasma which helped the picture look better in plenty of scenes than a PS3. Not to mention the color palette of games after the PS2 turned to muck.

    • @steeznson
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      22 months ago

      PS2 coincided with a lot of good handhelds too. Nintendo DS is a strong contender for best handheld ever, IMO.

      • @CleoTheWizard
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        32 months ago

        Oh absolutely, I was going to reference the Gameboy Advance that I grew up on as a part of this phase. Unfortunately, I don’t think those handhelds even got their time in the light that they could’ve had. It seems like they’ve had a long legacy but the DS and GameBoy came and went in but two generations of consoles.

        I mean imagine what we could do with a gameboy today. Or imagine how we could easily transform a modern phone into a DS form factor. We’re talking now about running a modern resident evil game in the palm of your hand. Insane power really.

        All this is largely due to the mobile play stores having no competition or curation. Our mobile games absolutely suck now. There are gems, sure, but otherwise I hate phone gaming despite my phone being my most used device.

        I think you’re absolutely correct though, the DS is the best handheld. Slim, powerful enough, very interactive, and a great game library. I highly recommend buying one and modding it, you won’t regret it.

        • @steeznson
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          22 months ago

          My first console was an original GameBoy and I probably got the most hours of use out of it compared to any other console. Despite the horrific backlight (lack thereof) and small screen. I love handheld gaming in general. Still play my 3DS all the time.

    • @graymess
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      12 months ago

      I realize I’m biased having experienced this era at my most influential (as another user easily defined it as ages 12 - 22), but this was definitely it for me. I only had a Gameboy before I finally had a PS2. The big mascot character games of this console were formative for me. Jak and Daxter, Ratchet and Clank, Sly Cooper. Kingdom Hearts and Shadow of the Colossus were everything to me. Tons of other huge titles made this generation.

      But it’s the weird little games that I think about fondly. Katamari became a franchise, but it was just a funny novel idea when it dropped on the PS2. Kya: Dark Lineage, an adventure/fighting game absolutely packed with fun ideas from a studio that just made racing games prior. Magic Pengel - basically DIY Pokemon - was pretty much everything I wanted in a game. Even Eye Toy, which completely sucked and barely worked, offered a new way to play games.

      Things were just different then. I think it was maybe the last time we thought of games by their budgets. Most titles were what we would maybe call AA these days, something that almost doesn’t exist anymore. Where indie games didn’t exist yet, but small studios were prolific. For me, any game that let you run around as a fairly detailed 3D character in a cool setting was magic to me in a way the flat, pixelated worlds on my GBC never were. The worlds in my PS2 were believable.

  • @[email protected]
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    122 months ago

    For PC I’d say 1999-2010 was absolutely amazing time to be a gamer. PC parts were dirt cheap, you could overclock the hell out of your hardware, and micro-transactions and pay-to-win didn’t exist.

    • codOPM
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      62 months ago

      Micro-transactions and pay-to-win are reason enough, those are some of the worst things to come to video games

  • @B0NK3RS
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    92 months ago

    Probably the period of '95 thought to '05. Mostly because they were the days of local multiplayer with friends and also the jump in technology made things even more interesting.

    Combined we had all the 4 player games on the N64. So Goldeneye, SSB, F-Zero, Mario Kart, Snowboard Kids, DK Racing, Perfect Dark, WCW vs NWO and more.

      • @B0NK3RS
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        12 months ago

        It’s still there but with family instead friends now. My kids won’t get the same experience though which is sad.

    • codOPM
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      12 months ago

      That must’ve been a great time for sure. I’m jealous I didn’t get to be a teenager through it! That would’ve been a blast

  • kratoz29
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    92 months ago

    I think the handheld era is my favorite, it basically ended with the 3DS, but it is the DS which I really can’t put down, I am playing for the first time Chrono Trigger on it, and it is my Jump Ultimate Stars machine (Wimmfi), also have some other bangers as well, but I’ll bore you if I citate them all.

    But hey, don’t get me wrong, the current handheld era is good too, we have the Switch, The Steam Deck and a plethora of good quality Chinese handhelds.

  • @Nostalgia
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    82 months ago

    The Commodore Amiga in its prime was one of the coolest times to be a teenaged gamer. Though NES was a hell of a thing at its time too.

    • codOPM
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      12 months ago

      I used to have a friend who had an NES that I’d play sometimes. Good times. I never played an Amiga though; but I am aware of its existence

  • @[email protected]
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    72 months ago

    Honestly, I really liked Zork. (I was the right age when it came out.). Never been as captivated by a game. More in the imagination than in the graphics.

    I’ll put Civilization V (and sometimes IV) in second place. Homeworld was great too.

  • PP_GIRL_
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    62 months ago

    2004-2014. That captures the great tail end of the sixth generation of consoles and the golden days of the seventh

    • codOPM
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      12 months ago

      You make a great argument. That’s basically my choice just with a couple extra years of great games so yeah, definitely. Hard to disagree

  • @[email protected]
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    Okay, below the “=” is my previous answer but I admit it was against the spirit of the post so let me think. I choose the years from the launch of EverQuest to Shadows of Luclin. I consider EverQuest to be the greatest MMO ever made. So my answer is 1999-2002.

    To this day I STILL play servers locked at the 2002 version of EverQuest. It’s very populated. That should tell you something.

    =====================================

    Got my first console in 89. First PC in 99.

    My choice is current year, because it encompasses every year before and the amount of emulator projects is greater than it’s ever been.

    I can make any system from history with a Saturday of effort.

    Plus all the indie games that capture the retro feel. Idk, gaming is in a great spot if you don’t bother with big studios.

    Is that a lame answer? O well, it’s sincere.

    • @Essence_of_Meh
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      42 months ago

      Lame? Not really. Cheating? Maybe a little bit but yeah, if we were to go by access to the history of gaming then “current year” always wins.

      • @[email protected]
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        Yeah, my choice is basically, “all of em” lol.

        I like to cheese what can I say.

        But idk, no other era had that. Sure we had emulators in 2005, 2010, but nothing like the selection of today.

        • @Essence_of_Meh
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          42 months ago

          Nothing wrong with that.

          The ability to play all that old stuff is a thing of beauty and seems to be getting stronger, both in practice and as a general concept within the industry, with each passing year. It’s great!

    • codOPM
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      32 months ago

      I knew I’d get one saying that but honestly it’s the most logical choice and I respect it. I guess in a way that’s probably everyone’s choice

      • @[email protected]
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        22 months ago

        Okay, I thought about it and edited my post with a version in line with the spirit of your question :-)

        • codOPM
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          22 months ago

          I like your updated answer! I’m surprised and impressed EverQuest is still populated. That’s awesome. I had a couple friends from college who would play it, and that wasn’t too long ago for me

          • @[email protected]
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            22 months ago

            EQ Live is still populated. But the version I play is called p99, it’s a free to play passion project by former players who took the source and run their own custom servers.

            The most popular custom servers just happen to be the ones locked at 2002.

            pQuarm is the new kid on the block. A server that will lock at PoP.

            • codOPM
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              22 months ago

              How beginner friendly is it? I’ve never played it before but free to play passion project sounds awesome

              • @[email protected]
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                The community is the best of any MMO I’ve ever played. If people find out you are new, it’s not guaranteed, but likely benefactors will find gear to donate to you. Largely because the game is HARD. It’s old school MMO. No hand holding. Press the wrong button and attack your own city guard. Hail the wrong demigod and they kill you for bothering them. Dying is often a huge deal (not at first). All that said, difficulty like that breeds community, and the community is like no other game that exists.

                DM me and I’ll either be a guide for you or direct you to some friends of mine who can recommend starter guilds and such for you. I know quite a few players on p99Green and pQuarm.

                • codOPM
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                  22 months ago

                  I appreciate all the help! I’ve got a few other games to finish up atm but when I find the time to delve into it I’ll send you a DM

  • Quazatron
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    62 months ago

    My first machine was a ZX Spectrum.

    I love the 8 bit games I grew up with but I’m not stuck in that timeframe. I appreciate that I can still play all my old games and the new ones.

    I just wish I had more time to enjoy them.

    Excluding the 8 bit games, the games where I spent more time are: Doom, Half-life, Portal, Bioshock Infinite, Skyrim.

    If I had to choose one, it would be Doom. Such a simple game, so much brainless fun, so many great mods.

    • codOPM
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      22 months ago

      I still regularly play the original Doom on my PC. A couple years ago a friend and I found an RTX mod for it that we played a ton. I still play that all the time

      • Quazatron
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        22 months ago

        Try the Brutal Doom mod if you haven’t already for an added dose of violence and gore. Combine it with mods like Eviternity for huge new maps and enemies. Enjoy!

        • codOPM
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          12 months ago

          I’ll take a look, thanks!