It's kinda sad how disliked Creative Labs seems to be these days. It was probably the first hardware I ever installed in one of my PCs (back around early 1993), and right up through the Sound Blaster 16s, it was the most trouble free hardware I ever used. It seemed like the fancier they got with the cards, the more problematic they became (at least in my experience fwiw).
'these days'? Try 'for years' instead. IMHO, if you constantly got the newer cards and used them, you were fine. Driver support sorta fell through the floor of all the cards older than 6-12 months, and that ultimately was the problem.
I still remember the day that I yanked out my Creative card and went to motherboard sound - all my computer lockups/reboots/whatever stopped for good at that moment. And I'm good with computers. I know my way around.
And yes, I remember my first Creative card too. I tossed that thing into my 486/25MHz and was amazed at the speech that Wing Commander had. It was so amazingly lifelike and such.