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Author Topic: What "gateway games" turned you into a serious gamer?  (Read 2269 times)
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Dante Rising
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« on: May 20, 2009, 06:10:06 PM »

At some point I think a few specific games move us out of the casual gamer crowd and into the group that ultimately view gaming as one of their core hobbies.  For a significant portion of my life, I never even played a video game, with the exception of dropping a few coins into an arcade game at the local pizza shop. That all changed when my friends introduced me to a few forms of video cocaine. The first was Master of Orion on the PC, and the second was Romance of the Three Kingdoms on the SNES. I can still vividly recall the first time my homeworld was destroyed in MOO, and the first time Lu Bu turned on my army after being bribed by a rival general.

After becoming completely addicted to these games I started branching out in a variety of directions. And while I would no longer consider either of those titles to be among my top 20, they were the two games that placed me on the road to becoming a serious gamer. So what were your "gateway games"?

A few of my friend's responses:

Final fantasy VII (Playstation)
Everquest (PC)
Adventure (Atari 2600)
Baldur's Gate (PC)
Wing Commander Series (PC)
Resident Evil (Playstation)



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« Reply #1 on: May 20, 2009, 06:11:29 PM »

Marijuana.
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« Reply #2 on: May 20, 2009, 06:16:41 PM »

uhm..Pong? Eliza? Wumpus?
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« Reply #3 on: May 20, 2009, 06:19:55 PM »

In all seriousness:

I don't know when I was officially hard-core. I think I may have started there as I was into Vectrex at one point as well as Amiga games and the C64 library. From a PC perspective:

Eye of the Beholder I & II.
Ultima VII was the next big one
Wolfenstein
Wing Commander
Syndicate
Dune II
System Shock
Duke Nukem
Quake
Thief
Might and Magic 2 and up to World of Xeen.

In console land I'd have to say that Zelda, Mario, Dragon Warrior and FF1 and Phantasy Star did it for me. I suppose Y's Book 1 and 2 count, and then I ate up Return Fire and Need For Speed 1 (with Driver X) with a big-ass spoon long before the PS1 consumed me. (Vandal Hearts, FFVII, etc...)
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« Reply #4 on: May 20, 2009, 06:27:50 PM »

Stellar Emperor. The greatest game ever made. I guess it was pretty much my first MMO.

woah, this trade count thing is new?
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« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2009, 06:28:39 PM »

XCom: UFO Defense. 

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« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2009, 06:30:07 PM »

pc: just about every infocom game smile ...

console: pc versions of ffvii, mgs, & re1&2, plus what turned out to be my first ps2 purchase - ico...
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« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2009, 06:35:50 PM »

Playing MULE,  7 Cities of Gold and Neuromancer among other things on my friend's C64.
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« Reply #8 on: May 20, 2009, 06:52:13 PM »

I think I've been a serious gamer since I first typed "OPEN DOOR" in King's Quest, but if I had to a definitive "ok, now I'm a serious gamer" moment it would probably be when I first started modifying autoexec.bat and config.sys on a regular basis to get games to work better (or at all).
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Dante Rising
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« Reply #9 on: May 20, 2009, 06:55:36 PM »

Quote from: hepcat on May 20, 2009, 06:28:39 PM

XCom: UFO Defense. 



I always had the worst luck in that game. My best guys always had the worst resistance to mind control. In XCom I would always rename the characters after friends of mine. I can't even recall how many of my friends I was forced to kill in the field. smile
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TK-421
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« Reply #10 on: May 20, 2009, 06:59:31 PM »

Quote from: hepcat on May 20, 2009, 06:28:39 PM

XCom: UFO Defense. 

This.

Also, X-Wing.

Then Privateer came along and that sealed my doom.
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« Reply #11 on: May 20, 2009, 07:25:23 PM »

Ultima IV. Before that it was just some lame games on the 2600 and C64, but Ultima introduced me to games with more depth.
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« Reply #12 on: May 20, 2009, 07:42:45 PM »

Ultima IV was huge, particularly with all the trinkets in the box.  Additionally, I was a big fan of, oh, every Infocom game made after I purchased Zorks I and II for my C64.
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« Reply #13 on: May 20, 2009, 07:59:29 PM »

Civilization.  Just one more turn... 
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« Reply #14 on: May 20, 2009, 08:22:00 PM »

Doom for FPS.

HOMMIII for TBS
CIV II for TBS

Gears of War and GRAW 2 for MP
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« Reply #15 on: May 20, 2009, 08:23:39 PM »

Prior to Final Fantasy VII, I only played sports and racing games.  Since then, I've become a complete RPG whore.

HOMM 3 got me hooked on TBS games, although my interest in that genre has waned significantly.
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« Reply #16 on: May 20, 2009, 08:33:14 PM »

Ultima 5 - I didnt have the manual or box, so I sat down, and laboriously translated every sign and text ingame made with runes, to real letters, based on assumptions of what I knew - for instance, the sign near lord british's castle was a great start for me.... I also drew maps of everything in the old SSI rpgs, Pool of radiance, and wrote down every conversation there was...

gods I was such a geek!
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« Reply #17 on: May 20, 2009, 08:39:57 PM »

prolly Final Fantasy 7..that really made me open my eyes to how Games could be more than just the usual stuff

since then,story has been one of the most important factors in games for me,sometimes taking over from gameplay at times..kinda like the Resident Evils(although Unimited Saga could of had an amazing story,but damn that sucked hard)


before the Playstation 1,it was mainly Nintendo and Spectrum games...go Chase HQ!!!
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« Reply #18 on: May 20, 2009, 09:34:09 PM »

Autoduel and the original Castle Wolfenstein for the Apple II.
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kratz
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« Reply #19 on: May 20, 2009, 09:35:04 PM »

X-COM: UFO Defense
Tie Fighter
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Harkonis
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« Reply #20 on: May 20, 2009, 09:46:23 PM »

Enchanter and Wizardry: Proving Grounds
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rickfc
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Why so serious?


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« Reply #21 on: May 20, 2009, 09:48:52 PM »

I played games since a pretty early age until my parents got my brother and I the Sega Genesis.  For years after the Genesis, I didn't really play games much, nor did I get any new systems.

Fast-forward a good 5 years or so, and my ex really wanted a N64 because of Mario 64.  We went out and bought it, but Mario was all sold out, so we settled for another game (some racing PoS).  A few days later I went to Hollywood Video to rent Mario for her, and for the hell of it, I rented The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.  

I remember playing the game for the first time very vividly.  At some point, my ex got up from the couch and said she was going to bed, and I told her I'd be right behind her.  Next thing I know, she comes back out to the living room, sits down next to me again and lights a cigarette.  I told her that I thought she was going to bed to which she proceeded to inform me that it was morning and that I needed to get ready for work.   I had played the entire night and I did not notice. eek

That game alone turned me back into a serious gamer.  I will always have a soft spot for OoT.  In fact, I think I'll probably start it up on Virtual Console this weekend.
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« Reply #22 on: May 20, 2009, 09:53:38 PM »

Right out of the gate with Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy.

I've grown far less hardcore the older I get, just due to available time and patience.
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« Reply #23 on: May 20, 2009, 10:20:00 PM »

R.B.I. Baseball
and
The EA NHL Series
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« Reply #24 on: May 20, 2009, 10:30:04 PM »

Ever since I played Pong for the first time.  It really did start from there...I was totally hooked and I was a junkie in arcades.
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« Reply #25 on: May 20, 2009, 11:50:42 PM »

I bit with the original Wizardry and the hook was set with Might and Magic.
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« Reply #26 on: May 21, 2009, 12:28:35 AM »

Kings Quest 1 on the Apple IIe
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« Reply #27 on: May 21, 2009, 12:43:06 AM »

I was hooked back in the 70s from Arcade hits like Space Invaders, Asteroids, Defender, Spy Hunter, Zaxxon, etc
Add to that getting an Atari 2600 for Christmas in 76/77? (Can't remember, but it was when it first came out)

I also played the old school D&D in the mid to late 70's (Just dice and graph paper) as well as the tabletop games they sold in the back of Comic books.

That pretty much rounded out what continues to be the only hobby I never gave up.
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« Reply #28 on: May 21, 2009, 02:32:07 AM »

Ancient Art of War.
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« Reply #29 on: May 21, 2009, 02:37:01 AM »

Pong and combat on the atari.  Then maybe lunar lander.  My first real programming project was lunar lander on an Apple II.
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« Reply #30 on: May 21, 2009, 02:52:06 AM »

I couldn't identify a single game that originally got me into video games... perhaps (Colossal Cave) Adventure, or Space Invaders for the 2600. 

I stopped gaming when I entered high school, but eventually got back into it in college - RPGs were definitely the catalyst there... Ultima 6 & 7 (all of the Ultima games, really), Eye of the Beholder, Sword of the Samurai, etc.
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« Reply #31 on: May 22, 2009, 08:43:25 AM »

Quote from: Purge on May 20, 2009, 06:11:29 PM

Marijuana.



I read no further. And Id say Counterstrike beta 1 ish. Fun fun fun.
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« Reply #32 on: May 22, 2009, 11:27:51 AM »

Quote from: Harkonis on May 20, 2009, 09:46:23 PM

Wizardry: Proving Grounds

If you ever have a taste to relive something very similar, check out Dark Spire on DS. It even has a classic mode with vector-line art etc.
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« Reply #33 on: May 22, 2009, 12:28:19 PM »

You know, I guess I was hooked on gaming with the first home pong console we got (which had handball, too!), but the 2600 sealed the deal (if you like Adventure, by the way, check this out: http://www.gamingtrend.com/forums/index.php?topic=33592.0).

However, I guess I didn't see myself as a "serious gamer" until I tried tackling HHGTTG, as I mentioned earlier.  Weird, though, given that I was hooked from a very early age.
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« Reply #34 on: May 22, 2009, 05:52:44 PM »

I dabbled in a few PC games (Myst, King's Quest, etc.) but can't say I was hooked at all, plus my PC was never quite good enough for the better games, so PC gaming never really took hold of me. Thinking about that reminded me of a very funny gaming moment, probably my first belly-laugh from a "video game."  A friend gave me his old copy of that simple game where someone is throwing babies from a rooftop on a burning building, for you to catch them to save them.  When I got a newer, faster PC and put that game in, it was hilarious - babies flying left and right at a rate impossible to keep up with - but hysterical to watch.

I really started video gaming when I was 37 and picked up one of those new-fangled NES machines.  I got Mario Bros. with it, and had fun watching myself run into things I was supposed to jump on, and falling down everywhere I wasn't supposed to.

BUT THEN... someone told me about The Legend of Zelda, and my life changed forever.  I played until 2 AM when I had to be up for work at 5 AM, I'd leave the game on while working because I just knew I'd never find that dungeon again, and I'd play non-stop until I had to quit for whatever reason.  Sounds a lot like me and Morrowind and FFXI, but Zelda was definitely the gateway.

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« Reply #35 on: May 22, 2009, 06:11:01 PM »

The original Mario Bros. on the NES.
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« Reply #36 on: May 22, 2009, 06:36:23 PM »

Quote from: mytocles on May 22, 2009, 05:52:44 PM

...I'd leave the game on while working because I just knew I'd never find that dungeon again, and I'd play non-stop until I had to quit for whatever reason...

Zelda ate up a lot of power when I was a kid, too.  But that's what I get for playing with power.
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« Reply #37 on: May 22, 2009, 06:41:21 PM »

I suppose it was Super Mario Bros. on the NES. 
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« Reply #38 on: May 22, 2009, 11:20:27 PM »

Infocom and Chuck Yeagers Flight Sim on my friends PC.

Then when I got a C64 it was Bard's Tale and Gunship that created my RPG and Simlust.
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« Reply #39 on: May 23, 2009, 03:36:23 AM »

Adventure and the Swordquest games (earthworld, fireworld and waterworld) on the Atari 2600.

After that it was probably Wizardry and the Ultima games. Ultima IV and V stand out the most through the hazy fog of age.

I think something they all have in common is they had a lot of loot in the boxes.
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