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Who Did It First?


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Ah man Wave Race. What a game. 

 

I've often thought about Mario 64's innovation from a player perspective point of view - the 3D camera following perspective thing I guess started there (did it? I think it did?) and runs through to the likes of GTA etc.

 

Also rocket launchers (would that be Wolfenstein for the purposes of this thread?) - is there a single FPS that doesn't involve rocket launchers somewhere?

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Oh. Also, extra lives:

 

First game to offer an extra life? Space Invaders would be a good shout here, but I'll bet something earlier did way before that.

 

And the unlimited lives mechanic a-la GTA and Watchdogs. Where did that start?

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The pipe bombs in Duke Nukem Time To Kill were a first for me. Throwing down bombs as traps, watching my dad crawl into a vent and then detonating them was really fun at the time, and the first time I experienced being able to actually choose when something exploded.

 

Doing the same sort of thing, throwing them onto other people’s cars on GTA Online, brought back great memories. But wasn’t as funny cos it wasn’t my dad getting outsmarted by his 12 year old son. :)

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12 minutes ago, disperse and recoagulate said:

 

The pipe bombs in Duke Nukem Time To Kill were a first for me. Throwing down bombs as traps, watching my dad crawl into a vent and then detonating them was really fun at the time

 

Sounds like a weird game 

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There were a whole load of spurious patents from the early 1980s where Atari tried to claim ownership of loads of basics. They re-emerged years later attempting to sue people for using their property, such as having items scrolling off the bottom of the screen then reappearing at the top, that sort of thing. 

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3 hours ago, Mr Do 71 said:

First open-world game - Ant Attack. It's the size of a postage stamp, compared to GTA V though.

 

Not even close to being the first, surely? Ultima on the Apple II came out in 1981, and that had a whole world with four continents to explore. Plus dungeons, space travel, loads of other stuff. It was primitive, but you could go wherever you liked.

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Here's one - what was the first FPS to introduce mouse and keyboard controls? Marathon came out in late 1994 with M&K, but could you do it in Doom? Obviously, you couldn't look up and down in Doom, but did the original release let you look left and right with the mouse while moving with the keys?

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I remember clicking the thumbstick to light up the way to the next main mission objective in Dead Space feeling like a revelation at the time, largely so I could ignore it and explore all other avenues first. Perhaps it was present in stuff I hadn't played before it, though. I know one of the Fable sequels introduced a breadcrumb trail or something similar that might have been at a similar kind of time.

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4 hours ago, Benny said:

Cell shading: Wacky Races.

I didn't think that sounded right so I checked wikipedia. And you are correct. By three days.

 

Here's a question. What was the first racing game to use drifting as a mechanic? Not the first game that had drifting, there are loads of 8-bit games where you would drift outwards if you took a sharp corner, but the first game that encouraged the player to kick the back end out to obtain the fastest route round a corner.

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6 minutes ago, DukeOfEarlsfield said:

I didn't think that sounded right so I checked wikipedia. And you are correct. By three days.

 

Here's a question. What was the first racing game to use drifting as a mechanic? Not the first game that had drifting, there are loads of 8-bit games where you would drift outwards if you took a sharp corner, but the first game that encouraged the player to kick the back end out to obtain the fastest route round a corner.


Super Mario Kart? It’s a tricky question, because they used to just call it power sliding, and you could do that in any semi-realistic game that let you skid. But SMK is the first one I can think of that made it an actual game mechanic. 
 

Powerdrift had you putting the back end out in corners, but I think that was just how you steered in the game, I don’t think you had to actually learn how to drift. 

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Sure are a lot of things that were commonplace in PC FPS games in the early to mid 90s getting invented in Goldeneye and Halo in this thread!

 

I'm not sure which game had sticky grenades first, I recall them being in one of the Dark Forces games and seeming novel at the time, but they might have been a staple of mods even before then.

 

Obviously loads of games had "sniper rifle, mission objectives, stealth, dual wielding" before GoldenEye.

 

In answer to K's question, yes Doom supported the mouse. When did WASD become the standard keybinding for movement though? It definitely wasn't for Doom and I don't think it was for Quake originally (although re-releases set up more modern controls as a default).

 

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I remember some US academic effort to try and make a wiki of the 'firsts' in game design a few years ago, they reckoned Metroid was the first game that let you traverse a multi-screen map.

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34 minutes ago, MK-1601 said:

Sure are a lot of things that were commonplace in PC FPS games in the early to mid 90s getting invented in Goldeneye and Halo in this thread!

 

I'm not sure which game had sticky grenades first, I recall them being in one of the Dark Forces games and seeming novel at the time, but they might have been a staple of mods even before then.

 

Obviously loads of games had "sniper rifle, mission objectives, stealth, dual wielding" before GoldenEye.

 

In answer to K's question, yes Doom supported the mouse. When did WASD become the standard keybinding for movement though? It definitely wasn't for Doom and I don't think it was for Quake originally (although re-releases set up more modern controls as a default).

 


Could you use mouse and keyboard at the same time in Doom, though? You can in source ports like Chocolate Doom that try to replicate the original release exactly, but I’m not sure if you could do it out of the box in 1993. 
 

Goldeneye didn’t invent any of those things to my knowledge, but it feels like a game that did them all so well that those implementations are the ones people copied (ie Looking Glass copying the mission objective structure for Thief). Thing is, as you say, things like sniper rifles have been around in games for so long that you can’t really say anyone invented them. Midwinter had a sniper rifle with a zoomable scope in 1989, but it’s hard to say whether it really influenced anyone. I imagine actual sniper rifles were probably more of an inspiration for future developers. 

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As an aside, I find it kind of amazing that videogames are so young as an artform and has such relatively limited history, but yet fairly basic things like the date games were released or the time a particular mechanic was first introduced are basically unknown.
 

Like, there seems to be no agreement as to when Eye of the Beholder was released. Wikipedia says it was released in 1991 (and says it was released the same year as the sequel, which strikes me as a little unlikely), there are a few reviews from 1991, but the box and manual (which I have in front of me) are copyrighted 1990. Some sources have one date, some have another. Similarly, there’s a Rise of the Triad expansion where nobody, not even the developer, has a record of the release date. 
 

It strikes me as odd given that despite most video game enthusiasts are the kinds of people who like to keep neat records of things, a lot of histories of gaming are absolutely full of myths and fairy tales. It’s perhaps down to the fact that video game history got passed on as a kind of oral history on message boards and forums, but it still strikes me as weird that a lot of this stuff isn’t set in stone. 

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I think that sort of unclear genealogy pretty common technical media. Even in the next-nearest medium, film, there are a lot of techniques where the first time it was used - or was put in something public - is disputed. That some things tend to be independently invented by several people once the technological foundations exist just adds to the confusion.

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25 minutes ago, K said:


Could you use mouse and keyboard at the same time in Doom, though? You can in source ports like Chocolate Doom that try to replicate the original release exactly, but I’m not sure if you could do it out of the box in 1993. 
 

 

 

I'm pretty sure you could? You would still need to use keys for changing weapons etc., I don't think the movement keys were disabled. The original instructions seem to suggest you could use whatever combination, although oddly moving, shooting and action button are all mapped to the mouse buttons by default (I remember this being the case for Quake as well, although that had no action button).

 

http://www.classicdoom.com/doominfo.htm

 

 

Edit: I don't think they ever conclusively nailed down the release date of Super Mario Bros. in the US, did they?

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7 minutes ago, Thwomp said:

The hot/ quick wheel. I first saw in in Red Faction Guerilla, but no doubt it was done before. 

And still one of the best implementations! I use the 'shift' function on the Xbox Elite controller to emulate it for games that relegate weapon selection to the d-pad (Gears, Dishonored etc). So much better.

 

Resi 4's camera is a classic. It immediately rendered the 'over the bonce' view of earlier third-person games like Hitman and Red Dead Revolver redundant. Third person games are so much better with a massive off-centre player character and the over-the-shoulder aiming view.

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5 hours ago, Mr Do 71 said:

First open-world game - Ant Attack. It's the size of a postage stamp, compared to GTA V though.

 

I think Pac Man has something to say about being the first open world video game... 

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2 hours ago, K said:

Here's one - what was the first FPS to introduce mouse and keyboard controls? Marathon came out in late 1994 with M&K, but could you do it in Doom? Obviously, you couldn't look up and down in Doom, but did the original release let you look left and right with the mouse while moving with the keys?

 

I played Wolfenstein 3D entirely with a trackball.

 

But yes, mouse and keyboard was possible with keyboard strafing for example.

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5 hours ago, AI said:

Analogue stick as standard - N64

I think there was an 8-bit console that came with an analogue stick. I want to say it was one of the Ataris, but it might be something random like the CoCo.

 

5 hours ago, AI said:

First true 3D platformer - Super Mario 64

I would say Jumping Flash was the first. Not as popular or (presumably, I've never played Mario 64) as good as the Mario game, though.

 

5 hours ago, AI said:

dual wielding

Rise of the Triad on PC had dual wielding way before Goldeneye.

 

5 hours ago, AI said:

optional twin analogue control

Descent on PS1 supported dual analogue controls. I broke a couple of the analogue joysticks playing it.

 

5 hours ago, AI said:

day/night cycle - Zelda Ocarina of Time

Xcom is the first game I remember playing that had a day / night cycle that was intrinsic to gameplay. Or is that not what you mean?

 

5 hours ago, AI said:

Lock on to an enemy in 3D space - Zelda Ocarina of Time

In what way? Like target a specific enemy for attacks? I seem to remember ultra crappy beat em up The Crow: City of Angels had that. I think possibly Tekken Force mode in Tekken 3 did as well. I have a vague inkling that one of the Alone in the Dark series did it too.

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1 hour ago, Billy Brown said:

I remember clicking the thumbstick to light up the way to the next main mission objective in Dead Space feeling like a revelation at the time, largely so I could ignore it and explore all other avenues first. Perhaps it was present in stuff I hadn't played before it, though. I know one of the Fable sequels introduced a breadcrumb trail or something similar that might have been at a similar kind of time.

 

I'm sure it wasn't the first, but I also loved how your ammo and health were clearly visable without the need for cluttered icons covering the screen. 

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5 hours ago, AI said:

Controller vibration - Lylat Wars

Sorry, feel like I'm picking on you now. Are we taking console only here? Arcade games had vibrating controllers way before this. Afterburner being one that immediately springs to mind.

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8 minutes ago, ScouserInExile said:

Wolfenstein, maybe?

 

It definitely was. Only the mouse look method wasn't widely adopted until later, so many played with just the keyboard.

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19 minutes ago, ScouserInExile said:

I think there was an 8-bit console that came with an analogue stick. I want to say it was one of the Ataris, but it might be something random like the CoCo.

 

I think the 5200 joystick had analogue movement, but I don't know if it was the first...

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1 hour ago, MK-1601 said:

I remember some US academic effort to try and make a wiki of the 'firsts' in game design a few years ago, they reckoned Metroid was the first game that let you traverse a multi-screen map.

 

:lol:

 

It's like the early 80s never happened.

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I think even Jumping Flash was far from the first 3D platformer. I Robot in the arcade is arguably a platform game and came out in 1984; Alpha Waves (1990) on the Amiga was pretty abstract, but the core game is about jumping / bouncing from platform to platform in a 3D space. 


Again though, it feels like there isn’t really any one game that invented the 3D platformer - more like lots of wildly different ideas and implementations that gradually coalesced into what we class as a 3D platform game today. 

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