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Letters from the Front

The 2010’s was a revolutionary time for the gaming industry. The past 10 years have seen more change than any other time in gaming; from new engines to better mechanics and FPS games went through that magnificent change.

The following games are the best 12 FPS games of the past decade. Some of these games have revolutionized how we play shooter games. As a big fan of the genre, I am very pleased what the following games did for one of my favorite genres in gaming.

12: Call of Duty: Black Ops (2010)

Treyarch already had a great reputation before the original Black Ops. World at War saw a great change of pace in the Call of Duty franchise, it was gritty and very gory and was a true World War II shooter in every sense of the word. Furthermore, it introduced us to Nazi Zombies which has become a staple in every Treyarch game since then.

In 2010, the sequel to World at War was released which gave birth to an entire franchise. Black Ops was praised for it’s fun and energtic multiplayer while the campaign gave a lot to think about. It was truly one of the most revolutionary Call of Duty’s of all time.

11: Crysis 2 (2011)

For many, Crysis 2 would not be the first pick when it comes to FPS games that released in 2011. People would usually go with Modern Warfare 3 or Battlefield 3 or Bulletstorm but Crysis 2 is an excellent FPS that shows a lot of heart and spirit and was one of the best games or underrated games of 2011 if you ask around. For me, it falls into both categories.

The story combined excellent mechanics with gorgeous graphics, using Crytek’s own CryEngine which is still one of the best engines to this day.

10: Battlefield 4 (2013)

2013 was an excellent time for the Battlefield franchise. Battlefield 4 was the biggest game in the series at the time, something that hasn’t been seen as Battlefield 1 and Battlefield V turned into something more resembling Call of Duty then actual Battlefield. Maps were huge and the destruction was unlike anything anything before and the game was filled with content, so much content that the game has prevailed into the modern day.

Multiplayer was very intense, chaotic, and a lot of fun and the only issues were it’s glaring bugs and glitches that has now been fixed but it was bad at the time. Despite my issues with Battlefield 4 and I am in the minority when it comes to this game, I need to praise it as it is one of the best shooters of the 2010’s decade.

9: Battlefield 1 (2016)

Battlefield 1 is probably one of the most immersive military games ever. Set during the course of World War I, it shined a light on a conflict that was forgotten and the stories of a century ago lost in the wind due to time and the natural progression of history.

The Great War was a conflict marked by change and human loss, a human loss so profound that it couldn’t happen again but it did. The world went from 1870 to 1940 in just under four years, soldiers began the war with technology of the era and ended it with technology that forever changed the course of warfare and brought the beginning of the modern day into the 20th century. Battlefield 1 brought the conflict to life in a way that only the old WW2 games of the 2000’s only could have pulled off; history at every turn, lessons being taught at every turn, the door was now open to forgotten stories and shining a light on a generation that was now gone and lost to history and the changing winds of time. If it wasn’t for Battlefield 1 then perhaps, the Great War would have been forgotten forever. We need more games like Battlefield 1.

8: Battlefield: Bad Company 2 (2010)

Battlefield: Bad Company 2 is one of the greatest military shooters of the 2010’s and it released 3 months into the new decade. Much like Battlefield 3, Battlefield 1, and Battlefield 4, Bad Company 2 put Battlefield onto the scene and made the franchise explode into the mainstream.

For all it’s steely eyed militarism, it turns out that Battlefield has a real personality. Building upon the very goofy Bad Company that released in 2008 and was one of the games that made 2008 so iconic, Bad Company 2 featured the best campaign in the franchise up until Battlefield 1 with very good writing, unique scenarios, and a cast of characters that were relatable and made you laugh. It’s a unique port of calling, a military game that barely ever comes. While the campaign was great, Bad Company 2’s multiplayer was carefree and chaotic which ended with the Vietnam expansion pack. An expansion pack that is criminally underrated and brought the Vietnam setting to life in ways that not many military games do. Bad Company 2 is Battlefield unshackled and is still the one of the greatest Battlefield games ever made.

7: Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 (2012)

Building upon the original Black Ops, Black Ops 2 is the last great Call of Duty before the downfall of the franchise with what came after in the years following Black Ops 2’s release.

In 2012, the Call of Duty franchise was at it’s absolute peak but at the same time it was like going to the same amusement park and riding the same ride every time you went back so it began to take it’s toll but Black Ops II was like a mission impossible, aiming to deliver innovation which Treyarch did and they did well.

While, the campaign was familiar as it once again took place in the throes of the Cold War in the mid 1980s, the campaign brought innovation to the franchise in the form of optional squad based strategy missions and plot lines that include choice making, it isn’t the reason why Black Ops II is considered to be the last great Call of Duty, that sole reason falls onto the multiplayer and it’s the multiplayer that has made Black Ops II fall into the annals of history. The multiplayer breathed fresh air into the staleness of CoD multiplayer, it incorporated every feature that a fan wanted and the matchmaking synced into a league system that gave a progression arc other than the EXP grind. While the multiplayer was still the same old Call of Duty multiplayer, it brought some fresh air into a formula that was stale and cranky. Much like the original Black Ops, Black Ops II was a revolution.

6: Titanfall 2 (2016)

Arguably the most underrated shooter of this generation. 2016 saw big first person shooter releases and Titanfall 2 sadly was stuck in between two of the biggest names in the FPS name: Call of Duty Infinite Warfare and Battlefield 1. Titanfall 2 featured excellent multiplayer with silky smooth controls and a campaign that was one of the best campaigns in FPS games in a very long time.

The campaign featured Jack Cooper and his BT-7274 Titan. The relationship was strong because of the dialogue and the events that both of them went through. Hoping we get a Titanfall 3 one day.

5: Rainbow Six Siege (2015)

Shooters have come a very long way from the early days of the 1990s and the 2000’s where every shooter just happened to be a World War II and Modern Warfare clone. In the last ten years, shooters have increasingly shifted towards multiplayer with games like Battlefield and Call of Duty increasing in popularity with each new installment, however, these games have lacked innovation and have done little to push said innovation in the genre.

A different type of multiplayer experience can be found within Rainbow Six: Siege. Although Rainbow Six is in the name, Siege is a very different beast from the early Rainbow Six games like Rainbow Six 3 and the Vegas franchise. In practice Siege plays out like a hybrid between SWAT 4 and Counter Strike and what results in a exciting cat and mouse game as both sides attempt to out think and out maneuver one another.

Siege has come a very long way from it’s release and it can be said that Siege is the GTA V of the FPS genre. Massively successful.

4: Wolfenstein: The New Order (2014)

Shooters and Storytelling never goes hand in hand. Even a good enough story can fall ill and derail the flow and action that usually comes with a FPS game but MachineGames did it and that is why Wolfenstein: TNO is here on this list, especially at the number 4 spot.

Not only has MachineGames manage to create a compelling story of resistance and actually make BJ, the ultimate action hero, a believable human being but in the process of making a very good story never forgot that Wolfenstein is a video game and never forgot what the franchise is all about.

3: Halo: Reach (2010)

The shift from Master Chief to a small fire team by the name of Noble Six was a big one. It gave the characters more character if you will and you got to personally know them as you accompanied them on a ill fated mission to try and save the planet Reach from the Covenant. Halo Reach is, to me, the most personal Halo game to date. It was a good send off from Bungie.

2: Battlefield 3 (2011)

The best military shooter on this planet and the height of the Battlefield franchise. This was EA DICE’s magnum opus.

After several years of DICE releasing spin-off games like Bad Company and 1943, DICE released a snippet of Battlefield 3 after rumors had been around for years, the next game in the mainline franchise, and what came after would be a masterclass in not only hype but marketing. Battlefield 3 transcended the military shooter genre with how it portrayed conflict in the 21st century and how it portrayed modern military. The game was such a hit that even years later, we are still talking about it. There will never be another Battlefield 3.

1: DOOM (2016)

The 2016 reboot rose from the expectations set forth from years and years of FPS games and from the very same expectations that has been expected from very single FPS game in the 2010s and it did it by sticking true to its guns and being true to what it is, it sent forth ideas from the original game and very game that came after that very iconic game at a time when things were the same. That is why DOOM is at the very top of this list. A complete masterclass from top to bottom.

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