1. Half-Life (1998)
You can point to a ton of reasons as to why the first Half Life is one of the best shooters ever made, but for the purposes of being brief, we’ll pick out our favourite: the immersion factor. Unlike a ton of other FPS games, Half-Life’s plot and environment conspired to make players feel they were starring in their own action film and made them feel a part of a world they could affect in immediate ways. That may not sound revolutionary today – since that aspect of shooter is now industry-standard – but back when shooters like Quake and Duke Nukem didn’t give a hoot about things like narrative or plot, Half Life seemed not only fresh, but vital too.
Next Red Faction (2001)