What Games Were You Playing When You Were 18?

What a trip down memory lane.

That was first year in university right after I quit CS 1.5 (or was it 1.6).

FFIX was the standout game on PS; otherwise I spent a lot of time on my PC mooning over Aribeth from Neverwinter Nights (curse the writers for that late game plot twist!), playing Microsoft's Dungeon Siege and Age of Mythology. This was an interesting time in gaming, a few years before I fell into the very deep MMORPG rabbit hole that was FFXI.

Warriorpoet897 wrote:
JeremyK wrote:

I was 18 in 1998. AKA one of the best years of gaming known to man. Looking back they're still amazing.

Metal Gear Solid
Half Life
Grim Fandango
Ocarina of Time
Baldur's Gate
Suikoden II
Final Fantasy Tactics

1998 represent. I was obsessing over MGS and Ocarina of Time myself as well as Resident Evil 2 and Starcraft.

We are one. The 1998 Archon of gaming.

Reading posts about the late 80's makes me wish I had a PC gaming rig back then.

I do remember a brief affair with OG King's Quest on a friend's PC in the mid-80's, but outside of that the closest I got was Parsec & text adventures (on cassette tape!) on the TI-99/4A or an early WRPG like D&D: Treasure of Tarmin on Intellivision (swoon).

Didn't get into PC-gaming proper until just before Unreal/HL landed in the late-90s.

I'm not sure I agree. Most of us are still kind of dumbsh*ts at 18... I think many need another four or five years to really appreciate more adult themes, instead of just THINKING you know everything. (Maybe I'm projecting?) It's also the first year of college/university for many of us, which kind of throws your life into chaos.

TAZ89 wrote:

I was 18 in 1989 and am shocked at how much gaming time I had back then. I was big on military sims/strategy at the time, largely SSI, Microprose etc.

'89 represent!

Prince of Persia - hated this game. It was amazing but incredibly difficult at timing the jumps. Just a couple of frames off and, oh look, dead again!

Sim City - Spend hours building and moments destroying. Even got my mom interested in this game, she was a county manager. May be the only one worth revisiting even for a moment

Golden Axe - this game was awesome in the arcade. Played it for hours with my brother

Populous - I'm a God! what more do I need?

Shadow of the Beast - this game really showed off what the Amiga could do. Played it over and over. Loved anything Psygnosis put out.

All Quake, all the time. The age of the real Team Fortress and the dawn of the consumer 3d card.

Quake did so many ground-breaking things, had an incredible array of mods, and the client was amazingly tunable and customizable. The keybinding system was utterly perfect, and I'm amazed by how much worse that particular area has gotten in modern games. Just copy Carmack from 20 years ago, chumps!

GLQuakeWorld still holds up today, and every few years one of my college buddies will put up a server and get some of us on there for some Arena or this goofy class-based campaign mod that we enjoy.

2001 was when I turned 18 so freshman year of college. If I recall correctly I was mostly playing on my dorm PC (as I didn't take a console with me to school until junior year):

Diablo II. Still one of the best ARPGs. Didn't really get a chance to play it in High School, so this was my first time playing it.

Unreal Tournament. Still one of my favorite FPS games. Played a ton of this on the dorm LAN. Relics + Strangelove mod + Facing Worlds ][ for life.

The Sims. I would occasionally noodle around with this. Still a classic on my hard drive.

Syndicate. Had a blast playing all the way through this, although not sure I would have the attention span or patience for it nowadays. Thank you Home of the Underdogs.

Unreal. Came with my copy of UT. Not sure how well it holds up but I think it gets lost in the FPS discussion due to Half-Life launching in the same year?

shoptroll wrote:

Unreal. Came with my copy of UT. Not sure how well it holds up but I think it gets lost in the FPS discussion due to Half-Life launching in the same year?

Unreal the game has largely been overshadowed by Unreal Tournament and the Unreal Engine itself. Unreal Engine was amazing for what it was capable of and how easy it was to work with. The game itself is interesting and did some things Half-Life is better known for, but the power and legacy of the engine have made a lot of people dismiss it as more tech demo than game.



It also never came to Nintendo 64

That would be 1990 and I was an Amiga guy so I think:

F19 Stealth Fighter.
Leaderboard Golf

Thanks BadKen for being older than me. So where's the really old fart?

Bruce wrote:

That would be 1990 and I was an Amiga guy so I think:

F19 Stealth Fighter.
Leaderboard Golf

Speedball 2 (and everything by The Bitmap Brothers) was awesome!

My 18th year was 1989. I spent the first half of the year preparing for, and taking, my A-levels. I don't think I touched a game until university that October, and even then I only played whatever was in my college bar.

I (very) dimly remember:

Winning Run, Pit Fighter and Altered Beast.

I don't remember all of them, but probably a ton of Metal Gear Solid, Final Fantasy VII, Final Fantasy VIII, and Castlevania SotN.

It seems I was playing Guild Wars, and only Guild Wars. To this day I believe it's the only good MMO ever made, so there's that.

When I was 18, we had a sega genesis and non-stop mortal Kombat tournaments with two controllers, one of which kinda worked. We thought life could not get any better.

nako wrote:

It seems I was playing Guild Wars, and only Guild Wars. To this day I believe it's the only good MMO ever made, so there's that.

While I don't agree that it's the only good MMO ever made, and I was a bit older than 18 when it came out I still have very fond memories of Guild Wars. I still enjoy the sequel regularly, but I would have liked something a bit more in the spirit of the original.

1998 represent! I played...

ClockworkHouse wrote:


I sold my SNES to buy Foo Fighters tickets when I was 18, and took my ancient 486 to university where I played only Tempest 2000 on it until I dropped out (having accomplished nothing but play a lot of Tempest 2000, and score a friend's student film with Impulse Tracker).

Tempest 2000 probably still holds up. I enjoyed uni a lot more the second time around. The 486 was replaced by a PC with a GeForce 2 on which I caught up on games from 1998. I tried ModPlug Tracker once but it wasn't the same.

Hmmmn, at 18 ? That would have been circa 1981. The only games played were on unix machines:
1. rogue https://nethackwiki.com/wiki/Rogue_(game)
2. planets (Think Spaceward Ho! but with no graphical interface on an ascii terminal).

Good times,


BadKen wrote:


I remember my brother pointing to the back of To The Earth and yelling LOOK AT THOSE GRAPHICS!


nako wrote:

It seems I was playing Guild Wars, and only Guild Wars. To this day I believe it's the only good MMO ever made, so there's that.

Guild Wars was great. I was just into my early 20s' and played the heck out of it. Tried the sequel and bounced off quickly.

Scrolling through these, I didn't realise I might be quite a few years younger than the average GWJer...! I was 18 in 2008, and the gap in games then and now isn't as drastic as you'd think ~10 years would be.

A few standouts:

Mirror's Edge
I loved this game when it released, it genuinely felt like something new and different. It was one of the prettiest games I'd played, and I still think it holds up well. Honestly, I still fire it up from time to time -- it left a real impression on me. I'll play it whenever I'm feeling stressed or flustered, as the repetition and attempts to improve previous times is very soothing.

Company of Heroes
Another game which has really stuck with me. I've literally got hundreds of hours logged in this. At the time I was pretty high up on the competitive ladder. I loved how active it was, and that it removed the "swarming" aspect a lot of RTS games have. You have a few small squads, and losing units really affects your gameplan. Lots of micro-managing, lots of positioning, and cover/flanking actually makes a difference. Later games such as Dawn of War 2 and Company of Heroes 2 tried to improve on it, but they didn't quite grab me the same.

I really ought to go back and finish the single-player modes. I never touched them!

Warcraft 3 (it's a bit older, I know...But I played this thing so much)
I hadn't yet discovered Dota, but my friends and I would constantly visit the internet cafe (or just play on the school computers) to play custom maps. I remember Footman Apocalypse and Enfo's Team Survival were very popular. This is another one I've got far too many hours in, but never actually finished single-player. It definitely left it's mark though, giving me an unhealthy addiction to Dota and tower defence games in later years.

Sins of a Solar Empire
Has it really been 9 years? Ouch, OK. I clearly remember my first girlfriend buying me this game from a thrift store after I was a few dollars short. I played it to death, and really enjoyed what it was. I had never really played a 4x game before, so I lapped it up; I had the time to do so! I don't really play these games much any more due to the time investment, but for years I've been telling myself to try this beauty again. I just can't believe I've been saying that for...what, 8 years now?

Finally, around 17-18 was when I was gifted one of those R4 flash carts for the Nintendo DS. I didn't have a job when I was 18, so my games were often freebies or cheap <$20 titles from the local gamestore. This thing broadened my gaming horizons like nothing else, and really showed me what was out there. The DS still has one of the absolute best libraries, so that seemingly small gift was probably one of the most profound gaming discoveries of my life at the time.

2002: I didn't get to play a lot of new games unless I "sampled" them from a 56k modem. Hitman 2 and Nolf 2 I got new. I was replaying FF6 a lot at the time and was about to start my X-ray school so I wasn't allowed to bring my stuff from home. I did rewatch a ton of Futurama and the Critic.

I did scrape some money the following year to buy a DS.

A_Unicycle, you've managed to make some of us feel very old indeed!

I'll only start feeling better if someone comes along to reminisce about the games they played on the Magnavox Odyssey!

Let's be honest, most of my gaming time was still consumed by WoW Vanilla and TBC at this point.

Outside of that, ES: Oblivion was happening about this time and I remember it as the shiny new title I bought for my new college laptop.

So when I was 18 in 1994, I was working at a Babbages store both in high school, and then transferred to another one when I went off to college. I was playing anything and everything thanks to our policy where I could take anything home for for 2 days and play it in order to give the customer's feedback. I played lots of forgettable stuff, but memorable ones were:

Doom: What more needs to be said. Yes the original still holds up. Some of the best memories were lan parties in college where we played a map that my roommate made called Minideath, which was essentially a 10ft by 10ft room loaded with rocket launchers and chainsaws and 4 players. Respawning and staying alive for a few seconds was a major accomplishment, and it was just stupid fun to play and swear at each other.

Tie Fighter: I was huge into space flight sims. Went back and tried to play, and I think I just struggled with the joystick emulation, and I just couldn't get my HOTAS configured correctly with dosbox.

Wing Commander III: Roommate decided he was going to pirate what I brought home thanks to his new SCSI CD-R. Blank CD-R's were like $4-$5 apiece and he messed up a few times learning how to do it, and a few more times when we realized jumping near his computer produced a big enough vibration to make him make a coaster. As the game came on 4 CD's we realized it cost him roughly $65 to pirate a $60 game. As far as going back, I watched the live action parts again recently, but still preferred the flying of Wing Commander 2. While it is great that space flight is coming back, I'm not interested in an open world, rather I loved the single player stories that Wing Commander produced.

Syndicate: Really got into this for a while. Found my old floppy disks and tried to play it again, but just couldn't get past the interface.

X-Com UFO Unknown: I remember one marathon session of this where I knew I had to get up and go to the bathroom, and I spent several seconds trying to remember if I (myself) had enough movement points to perform that action. Glad this was updated, as again I struggled playing with the interface again.

WarCraft Orcs and Humans: Played a ton of this over the Kali VPN service, was like nationally ranked on some ladder system for a while when it came out, but then people started devoting webpages to various strategies, build orders and things like that, and if I wanted to memorize openings, I'd go and play chess

B17 Flying Fortress, and Secret Weapons of the Luftwaffe: both came out a few years earlier, but I played the hell out of them all through high school and into early college. While most kids had posters of their favorite bands on their bedroom walls, I had posters of WWII aircraft

NHL 94/95: our college floor had enough Genesis systems that we had a full NHL league going where each person had their own team and we played through an entire season of 95 with nobody simulating any games. I was the Whalers because I wanted my opponents to hear Brass Bonanza as often as possible

NBA Jam: And working in the mall meant tons of time in the arcades, most of it trying to keep Mark Price on fire. Boomshakalaka

(and yes, I did drop out of college a year later, looking at the above list, I know why...)

This thread is making me feel old.

I was 18 in 1992. Truth be told I spent the first half of 18 trying to recreate myself at college - no time for geeky pursuits. The second half of the year I had dropped out and joined the Army, so my "free time" consisted of shining boots and studying my butt off in intel school. About the only game I remember playing were Mortal Combat at a run down bar off post.