Gaming Made Us

When we were younger so much younger than today

Over the years, we’ve built up a vast stock of Gaming Made Mes – highly, unashamedly, gloriously subjective features about the videogames that proved, for one reason or another, formative to writers including the RPS Hivemind and associates, and developers such as Ken Levine, Erik Wolpaw and Soren Johnson. This is the complete collection.

Some spectacular reading awaits you below, on a huge array of even more spectacular games.

Click on author names to go read the various features, by the way. Not sure if that’s self-evident or not.

Team RPS

  • Speedball 2: Brutal Deluxe; Hired Guns; Eve Online; Half-Lifeby Jim Rossignol
  • XCOM; Scorched Earth; Legends of Valour; Dune II: Battle for Arrakis; Gobliins 2by Alec Meer
  • The Hobbit; Kung-Fu Master; Gauntlet; Transformers 2005 MUSH; Thief: The Dark Project by Kieron Gillen
  • Ingrid’s Back!; Dungeon Master; Day of the Tentacle; Lemmings; The Longest Journeyby John Walker
  • Ultima VIIby Adam Smith



  • Adventure; Castle Wolfenstein; The Legend of Zelda; Ultima Underworldby Ken Levine (Irrational)
  • Legacy of the Ancients; Seven Cities of Gold; Adventure Construction Set by Soren Johnson (designer, Civ 4, Spore )
  • Mattel Footballby Erik Wolpaw (Valve)
  • Alternate Reality: The Cityby Rod Humble (The Sims 3, Second Life)
  • Rick Dangerous; Mario Bros. Game and Watch; Wolfenstein 3D, Doom, Quakeby Ed Stern (Splash Damage)


  1. McDan says:

    These were, and are it has to be said, amazing. Amazing content and that you got so many figures from around the gaming world to contribute as well. Have a good new years gentleman, I’ll just be spending mine alone, and reading, mainly alone.

    • nomad says:

      Ditto McDan. But at the risk of sounding like an RPS philistine, I’d like to insert my own gaming made me.

      Contra (NES), Doom 2 , Gods (DOS) – Nomad

    • 0positivo says:

      If you consider going over the same motions and doing the same things as a sign of being together in solitude, then no, you are not alone. That’s how I like to see it, anyway, while I listen to my younger brother planning one of those awful parties

      Also, Homeworld. Heh, I’m a little younger than the average here

    • rayne117 says:

      I’d like to throw mine out there too. Remember I’m a little younger than must of you, I believe so anyways (17):

      Halo: Combat Evolved (Xbox); Freedom Fighters (Xbox); Kingdom Hearts (PS2) – rayne117

  2. bfandreas says:

    I’m with Adam and Ultima 7. Although I will include Ultima 6 in it. And the Underworlds(especially the first one). Everything else on that list is just fluff. This is the winning hand. During my early years as a young adult that’s something that shaped me.
    I’m one of the second generation of gamers who grew up with the medium and frankly can’t grasp how on earth this still isn’t accepted by those blasted baby boomer who simply refuse to die.
    Also as much as I respect the man and his judgement and his insight: Roger Ebert, if you still think games can’t be art due to how unstructured either their tale or how railroaded you are, take a good long look at Bastion. I’d hang this one next to the Boticelli paintings burnt by that arch-moron Savonarola. Who I got to conciously to mercy kill. In another video game. That’s also up there.

    Yes, as with other means of telling a story, we can learn from video games. As long as it isn’t one of that brain-dead, approved by a comitee major league stuff that also pollutes the movie industry.

    If you find yourself in a focus group and feel as if you belong then you are seriously fraked.

  3. Wizardry says:

    No turn-based RPGs (with a party) represented? Looks like bad taste is more widespread than I thought possible!

    Oh and it’s “Legacy of the Ancients”, not “Legends of the Ancients”. Needs correcting.

  4. MiniMatt says:

    I was just thinking I should write some “gaming made me” post, sell the publishing rights to RPS for a pack of ginger nut biscuits and half a flat bottle of left over champagne (that’s the going rate, yes?) and now I realise you’ve collectively scribbled far more eloquently than I about ALL THE BLOODY GAMES I WOULD HAVE PICKED.

    Had to have a re-read of KG’s Hobbit article as I still to this day remember getting lost in the forest with the pale bulbous eyes.

  5. Rao Dao Zao says:

    I think that bottom image should say “DEUS EX MADE EVERYONE“.

    • nomad says:

      True that, in a way, it made a gamer for life (pardon my street langue) in most of us. Deus Ex refreshed the FPS genre in a major way, I remember playing dues Ex many years after it first came out (around when Max Payne was the in thing). But I just absolutely lost it, for me, at that moment the future of gaming had arrived. And While i toiled away countless hours playing the Max Payne demo, I truly felt fulfilled after a few minutes in the bionic boots of Denton.

      P.S: Another New Year, trolling on my new found love, RPS – A ban seems under way.

    • Vegard Pompey says:

      I fully agree.

      @RDZ: On a totally unrelated note (for which I apologize), I thought I recognized your nickname; you’re the guy who made When the Freedom Slips away and a bunch of other Warcraft III maps. I was the first person on one of the main WC3 map sites (forgot its name) who gave WtFS a rating lower than 5, and also wrote a mean review (for which I apologize).

    • nomad says:

      I doesn;t knows if it was me you were referring to – but I haven’t haad the skills to make fan loved maps since I was a mere foetus, but I’m sure your mean review has gone a long way in in improving (said Nomad’s) map making skills. It’s the brink (no pun intended) of a New Year. So past misgivings should indeed be forgiven. [I hope so at least.]

    • Rao Dao Zao says:

      Don’t worry, Vegard, I was daft back then too.

  6. Navagon says:

    Easily some of the best articles on the subject of gaming I’ve read. Thanks for compiling them!

  7. nomad says:

    Well it’s already New years where I’m at Wishing all you lovers of the digital story realm a happy and prosperous new year. Hope this year is filled with awesome game releases and revolutions in gaming (hope devs read this). It’s been a great year so far, what with Skyrim, Arkham City and LA Noire for PC. But I hope the unexpected happens this year. Peace, love and a million frags. -Nomad.

  8. Skabooga says:

    Haha, the title picture for Ed Stern’s Gaming Made Me entry has the caption ‘Someone finally chose Deus Ex!’ Good to see that it got much more love in the couple of years since.

  9. Raiyan 1.0 says:

    Guys, what’s the 7th pic from? The one with the blue bike?

  10. DeanLearner says:

    Eugh, I hate these Christmas specials which are full of clips. Like does anyone remember that episode of friends which was just full of clips?


  11. shoptroll says:

    Please please please keep this series going next year. It’s one of the best things on this site and I love reading about other people’s experiences with games growing up.