Gaming. We love it because of those moments it gives us. The unexpected that can make you smile, curse, gasp or scream. There’s no other medium like it and why, I like to think, we all love it so.
With that in mind, here are a few gaming moments that stick in my mind.
Assassin’s Creed Unity online
A complete car-crash at launch and not much better when I picked it up a few months later, Assassin’s Creed Unity has gone down as a lesson in how not to do things. Which is a shame because when it went right it went really right.
Online was amazing. I’ll never forget the first time I teamed up with three other assassins and we swarmed over the Parisian rooftops. We were a wave of silent murder, climbing up towers, leaping off, rolling, running, dashing through windows. The guards never stood a chance. It all felt so fluid and free.
Then the game crashed, kicked you out and you had to keep your fingers crossed you’d reconnect. But for the brief moments it worked? Unbelievable.
Mortal Kombat X-Ray Moves
Remember the first time you saw a finishing move? Some made you laugh, others made you say how gross it was and some even made you wince. They are so ridiculous, so over the top though that they arguably lose their impact over time. Not so the X-Ray Moves.
Unleashed in the middle of a fight they zoom in to see ribs crack, backs break, bones shatter and spleens sliced wide open. All in glorious slow motion. Even now I still groan in shared pain every time I see one. They are so brutal, so violent and so well executed that their impact just isn’t diminished. The visuals are complimented by the sounds as slowed down the muffled screams are drowned out by the sharp crack of bones cutting through the fog before it’s all rounded off with a well timed vibration of the controller.
It’s a moment that never gets old.
Halo Warthog escape
At the very end of Halo the player is tasked with escaping the collapsing ring by driving along in the game’s signature vehicle, the Warthog. Might not sound much on paper but when there’s two of you playing (one driving, one shooting), the epic Halo theme music booming out of the speakers, explosions going off all around and the huge Duke controller rumbling in your hands it’s really quite special.
That it all happens after the grand final battle makes it a thrilling, fitting end and I loved it.
Molten Core for the first time
Coordinating 40 people to do anything at the same time is hard. Coordinating 40 people across the world to take down an ancient lava-tornado god-monster armed with a huge, fiery hammer, most of whom have never met in person is bordering on the heroic. That’s what it took to complete one of World of Warcraft’s first and most legendary raids.
It takes time to even get to Ragnaros, taking down multiple sub-bosses on the way. Then the fight itself is epic, and even the slightest deviation from the plan or your specific role can spell certain doom for the entire raid group. It’s a colossal effort all round and the feeling of completion is really quite special. So much so that it was traditional to take a picture of the whole party around the defeated foe’s hammer.
I only did it once and wish I could find the screenshot (it was ten years ago!) to share, but the experience lives long in the memory.
So what are your favourite gaming moments? It could be when The Legend of Zelda theme plays, using the pedal to duck in Time Crisis or zombie-dogs through a window. Maybe it’s a last minute winner in FIFA, a perfectly-timed resurrection in Overwatch or breaking into Shadow Moses. Let us know in the comments!
Dad, Gent, Geek. Occasional grumpy old man. Console Peasant. Should know better.