T.J.’s Best Game of 1993:
Star Wars: X-Wing
Take Wing Commander and set it in the universe I spent most of my preteen years almost unhealthily obsessed with and you can’t come out with anything but a winning formula. X-Wing was the first game that made me feel like I’d been transported into the Star Wars films, and its highly immersive (for the time) 3D graphics laid that magic on thick. It was challenging, hectic, and fun as hell. It’s one of the first games I remember where getting good at it, after lots of practice, made me feel like an absolute hot-shot, barrel-rolling and blasting my way through danger like my favorite movie heroes. And it just felt like Star Wars, which not all licensed game at the time did. Few games since have had the same ability to make me lean back and forth in my chair during an intense dogfight. I was giddy almost every moment I played X-Wing, and that’s a tough quality to replicate even with modern game engines.
D.M.’s Best Game of 1993:
Doom is the original king of the shooter genre; In no way was the meteoric rise of id’s masterpiece not a game changer. From the sprawling, interesting level design to the highly varied, challenging hordes of foes, Doom is throwing fast balls at you from the word “go”. I remember my first time at the controls of this one, my heart rate up, circle-strafing like mad as I unloaded my entire arsenal at what felt like a never-ending tide of demonic foes. It was invigorating. It was powerful. It was an arrival. The shooter was on the stage and taking a bow, and it’s been hogging the spotlight in true diva fashion ever since. Oh, and Cyberdemon? Screw that guy. But in a good way.