Welcome to a new segment on Another Dungeon; “Palaver” – a monthly discussion where the Another Dungeon team answer a question presented to them. If you have a burning question you’d like to ask you can post a comment below or send us an email.
This weeks question is:
With the release of the kid friendly multiplayer Splatoon, there’s no better time to take a look back on what the Another Dungeon team feel is their favourite multiplayer game from their childhood.
Dave: Wow, that’s a tough call – a single favourite multiplayer game from when I was growing up! While honourable mentions shall go out to Road Rash and Master of Monsters (both favourites for different reasons), I think my winner has to be Snow Bros. My sister and I used spend much of our pocket money at the local milk bar playing this on the arcade! Might not be the greatest multiplayer game around, but it was a solid, fun game and I have loads of great memories courtesy of it.
Ben: Goldeneye 007 would have to take the cake for me. Between the awesome level design, and the quick death/respawn shooting mechanics, Goldeneye 007 offered me and my friends what nothing else could until Unreal Tournament 2004. And that was? You bet – the chance to kill each other spectacularly, over and over again. Looking back, the graphics were atrocious even for then, and the controls down right whacky. But they were our atrocious graphics, and our whacky controls. And they let us kill each other over and over again. What more can you ask from a game?
Amelia: I don’t even have to think about this one. Crash Team Racing was the multiplayer game that defined my childhood, followed closely by Crash Bash. I remember spending many afternoons with my brother and our neighbourhood friends furiously attempting to beat the time trials for every last track. To this day, whenever I return to the game for a good ol’ boost of nostalgia, I find myself remembering every shortcut and secret of all the tracks – though my skill level is no longer what it once was.
Greg: I guess I did a lot more multiplayer in my teenage years, given a lot of games from my childhood were singleplayer games (with the occasional multiplayer “pass the controller” mode thrown in as a bit of an afterthought). However, my greatest early memories of multiplayer would be around the “Games” games. If that makes no sense to you, let me be clearer: Summer Games, Winter Games, and the ever-popular California Games. While these do follow the “pass the controller” format, it is decidedly NOT an afterthought. And while these games may well have burned themselves into memory as a result of the (at times) excruciating controls, they were fun, memorable, and a big part of the 80s.
Jair: Ah, back in the day of local multiplayer in which you actually had to be in the same room as someone else in order to play with them… I fondly remember playing Goldeneye 007 on N64, as well as Lylat Wars (aka Star Fox) and Super Smash Bro’s 64 on the floor of my best friend’s living room after school each day. Not only was it a huge novelty actually being near a console (having never had one myself as a kid), but the excitement of being able to battle your friend for bragging rights, or to have your pick of their favourite Tazos as a reward, was unmatched. If I had to name one title that really stands out as my favourite multiplayer game, it was probably Runescape (circa 2001). It was my first foray in to (and for a long time my only contact with) the online world in which I’d meet up with my friends from primary school and explore the world of Gielinor, continuing our banter that started during the day.
Tim: This is a pretty simple one for me. I got into gaming in my early teens and at the time the Nintendo 64 was the console to have. By far the most fun I’ve probably ever had playing a multiplayer game was getting 3 mates around and having a massive Goldeneye 007 session. For me this was the game that got me into multiplayer shooters and the variety that it had was great. I don’t think there’s really been anything that matches how much fun we had playing Goldeneye 007. Ahh, those were the golden days…
Andrew: It’s really hard to choose one specific game that I loved the most as a kid playing multiplayer. Was it sitting around a computer with a bunch of mates trying to defeat the Devil Birds in Lode Runner? Or maybe competing against my sister to try and beat the amount of yarn balls the daily chump had to play Bubsy on A*Mazing? Well, neither of those, even though they are great memories. Super Mario Bros 3’s two-player versus mode was where most of my time was spent. The joy of throwing a turtle shell through a pipe in order to hit the other player is still something I cherish.
Noel: As a kid, multiplayer (as we know it today) wasn’t really around, it was more co-op, and most of the time I hated it. In games like Golden Axe, Gauntlet, 1942, etc., if you were playing with friends, it was awesome, but most of the time you were playing with random kids that just wanted to survive long enough to make the 20 cents they invested (yes you heard me, I’m that old….shuddup) last long enough to make it worthwhile, which meant screwing the other players out of health, potions, power ups, etc. For me, I didn’t really enjoy multiplayer until the era of PS2 and Xbox when I was an adult, and my favourites were Halo and Socom. However, the one that holds a special place in my heart was HOA (Hardware Online Arena) for the PS2. It was the first true online multiplayer experience I ever had, it was practically vehicle-based gladiatorial combat and it was utterly amazing.
Mike: Though the younger me always preferred a single player experience, the exception was when I entered an arcade. I was quick to master Street Fighter II: The World Warrior and often had a line-up of enthusiastic gamers ready to challenge me. Unfortunately, those skills have waned over the years and I’m back to playing by myself. [eww – Ed.]
Chris: Honestly, it depends on what you consider “multiplayer,” although I do have a few titles that spring to mind. I remember switching out every time we died in Grand Theft Auto (yes, the first one), hunting down each other with knives in Syphon Filter 3, and probably my favourite, working together with my cousins to beat Toejam and Earl. Sure, they were older and sometimes took the best stuff for themselves, but I was young. I was just happy to have someone to play video games with.