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Shooter games are a subgenre of action video game, which often test the player's spatial awareness, reflexes, and speed in both isolated single player or networked multiplayer environments. Shooter games encompass many subgenres that have the commonality of focusing on the actions of the avatar engaging in combat with a weapon against both code-driven NPC enemies or other avatars controlled by other players.
A multiplayer video game is a video game in which more than one person can play in the same game environment at the same time, either locally or over the internet. Multiplayer games usually require players to share the resources of a single game system or use networking technology to play together over a greater distance; players may compete against one or more human contestants, work cooperatively with a human partner to achieve a common goal, supervise other players' activity, co-op. Multiplayer games allow players interaction with other individuals in partnership, competition or rivalry, providing them with social communication absent from single-player games.
In computing, an avatar is the graphical representation of the user or the user's alter ego or character. An icon or figure representing a particular person in a video game, Internet forum, etc. It may take either a three-dimensional form, as in games or virtual worlds, or a two-dimensional form as an icon in Internet forums and other online communities. Avatar images have also been referred to as "picons" in the past, though the usage of this term is uncommon now. It can also refer to a text construct found on early systems such as MUDs. The term "avatar" can also refer to the personality connected with the screen name, or handle, of an Internet user.
Usually this weapon is a firearm or some other long-range weapon, and can be used in combination with other tools such as grenades for indirect offense, armor for additional defense, or accessories such as telescopic sights to modify the behavior of the weapons. A common resource found in many shooter games is ammunition, armor or health, or upgrades which augment the player character's weapons.
A firearm is a portable gun that inflicts damage on targets by launching one or more projectiles driven by rapidly expanding high-pressure gas produced chemically by exothermic combustion (deflagration) of propellant within an ammunition cartridge. If gas pressurization is achieved through mechanical gas compression rather than through chemical propellant combustion, then the gun is technically an air gun, not a firearm.
A grenade is an explosive weapon typically thrown by hand, but can also refer to projectiles shot out of grenade launchers. Generally, a grenade consists of an explosive charge, a detonating mechanism, and firing pin inside the grenade to trigger the detonating mechanism. Once the soldier throws the grenade, the safety lever releases, the striker throws the safety lever away from the grenade body as it rotates to detonate the primer. The primer explodes and ignites the fuze. The fuze burns down to the detonator, which explodes the main charge.
Body armor/armour, personal armor/armour, suits of armour or coats of armour all refer to protective clothing, designed to absorb and/or deflect slashing, bludgeoning and penetrating attacks by weapons. It was historically used to protect military personnel, whereas today, it is also used to protect various types of police, private citizens, private security guards or bodyguards. Today there are two main types: regular non-plated personal armor and hard-plate reinforced personal armor, which is used by combat soldiers, police tactical units, private citizens, and hostage rescue teams.
Most commonly, the purpose of a shooter game is to shoot opponents and proceed through missions without the player character being killed or dying as a result of the player's actions. A shooting game is a genre of video game where the focus is almost entirely on the defeat of the character's enemies using the weapons given to the player.
Shooting is the act or process of discharging a projectile from a ranged weapon (such as a gun, slingshot, crossbow, or bow. Even the acts of launching/discharging artillery, darts, grenades, rockets and guided missiles can be considered acts of shooting. When using a firearm, the act of shooting is often called firing as it involves initiating a combustion process.
A player character is a fictional character in a role-playing game or video game whose actions are directly controlled by a player of the game rather than the rules of the game. The characters that are not controlled by a player are called non-player characters (NPCs). The actions of non-player characters are typically handled by the game itself in video games, or according to rules followed by a gamemaster refereeing tabletop role-playing games. The player character functions as a fictional, alternate body for the player controlling the character.
Shoot 'em ups are a specific subgenre of shooters wherein the player may move up and down and left and right around the screen, typically firing straight forward.
Shoot 'em ups share common gameplay, but are often categorized by viewpoint. This includes fixed shooters on fixed screens, such as Space Invaders and Galaxian ; scrolling shooters that mainly scroll in a single direction, such as Xevious and Darius ; top-down shooters (sometimes referred to as twin-stick shooters) where the levels are controlled from an overhead viewpoint, such as Bosconian and Time Pilot ; rail shooters where player movement is automatically guided down a fixed forward-scrolling "rail", such as Buck Rogers: Planet of Zoom and Space Harrier ; and isometric shooters which use an isometric perspective, such as Zaxxon and Viewpoint . This genre also includes "run and gun" games which emphasize greater maneuvering or even jumping, such as Thexder , Contra and Metal Slug . [ citation needed ]
Space Invaders is a 1978 arcade game created by Tomohiro Nishikado. It was manufactured and sold by Taito in Japan, and licensed in the United States by the Midway division of Bally. Within the shooter genre, Space Invaders was the first fixed shooter and set the template for the shoot 'em up genre. The goal is to defeat wave after wave of descending aliens with a horizontally moving laser to earn as many points as possible.
Galaxian is a fixed shooter arcade game developed and released by Namco in 1979. It would be licensed out to Midway Games for manufacture and distribution in North America. In the game, the player controls a starship at the bottom of the screen as it must destroy the titular Galaxian aliens. Aliens will appear in a set formation towards the top of the screen and perform a dive-bomb towards whilst firing shots, in an effort to hit the player. Bonus points are awarded for destroying aliens in groups or by taking out enemies in mid-flight.
In computer displays, filmmaking, television production, and other kinetic displays, scrolling is sliding text, images or video across a monitor or display, vertically or horizontally. "Scrolling," as such, does not change the layout of the text or pictures but moves the user's view across what is apparently a larger image that is not wholly seen. A common television and movie special effect is to scroll credits, while leaving the background stationary. Scrolling may take place completely without user intervention or, on an interactive device, be triggered by touchscreen or a keypress and continue without further intervention until a further user action, or be entirely controlled by input devices.
Shooting gallery games include light gun games, although many can also be played using a regular joypad and an on-screen cursor to signify where the bullets are being aimed. When these debuted, they were typically played from a first-person perspective, with enemy fire that occurred anywhere on the screen damaging or killing the player. As they evolved away from the use of light guns, the player came to be represented by an on-screen avatar, usually someone on the bottom of the screen, who could move and avoid enemy attacks while returning fire. These sorts of shooters almost always utilize horizontal scrolling to the right to indicate level progression, with enemies appearing in waves from predestined locations in the background or from the sides. One of the earliest examples is the 1985 arcade game Shootout produced by Data East.
A light gun is a pointing device for computers and a control device for arcade and video games, typically shaped to resemble a pistol. In aviation and shipping, it can also be a directional signal lamp.
A gamepad, joypad, or simply controller is a type of game controller held in two hands, where the fingers are used to provide input. They are typically the main input device for video game consoles.
Shootout (シュートアウト) is a 1985 shooting gallery-style arcade game developed and published by Data East in October 1985.
A specific subgenre of this type of game is the Cabal shooter, named for the game Cabal , in which the player controls an on-screen avatar that can run and often jump around the screen in addition to being able to aim their gun. Other games in this subgenre include Blood Bros. , Dynamite Duke , NAM-1975 , Wild Guns , and Sin and Punishment .
Blood Bros. is a 1990 arcade game developed and published by TAD Corporation in Japan and Europe, while it was later published in North America by Fabtek. It is a spiritual sequel to Cabal, with almost identical mechanics. A bootleg of this game is known as West Story.
Dynamite Duke is a 1989 action arcade game developed by Seibu Kaihatsu. It was later ported to the Master System, Mega Drive/Genesis and X68000. Being a Cabal-based shooter, it can be considered a follow-up to Seibu's Empire City: 1931 and Dead Angle.
NAM-1975 is a war shooting gallery arcade video game developed and originally published by SNK on April 26, 1990. It was one of the launch titles for both the Neo Geo MVS (arcade) and Neo Geo AES (home) platforms, in addition of being the only title in the system that does not feature the Neo Geo boot screen in its attract mode.
As light gun games became more prevalent and started to make use of fully 3D backgrounds, such as the Time Crisis or House of the Dead series, these sorts of games fell out of popular production, but many like Blood Bros. still have their fanbase today. Other notable games of this category include Operation Wolf and Laser Invasion .
Light gun shooters are shooting gallery games that use a pointing device for computers and a control device for arcade and video games. The first light guns appeared in the 1930s, following the development of light-sensing vacuum tubes. It was not long before the technology began appearing in arcade shooting games, beginning with the Seeburg Ray-O-Lite in 1936. These early light gun games used small targets (usually moving) onto which a light-sensing tube was mounted; the player used a gun (usually a rifle) that emitted a beam of light when the trigger was pulled. If the beam struck the target, a "hit" was scored. Modern screen-based light guns work on the opposite principle—the sensor is built into the gun itself, and the on-screen target(s) emit light rather than the gun. The first light gun of this type was used on the MIT Whirlwind computer, which used a similar light pen. Like rail shooters, movement is typically limited in light-gun games.
Notable games of this category include the 1974 and 1984 versions of Wild Gunman , Duck Hunt for the NES, the Virtua Cop series, Time Crisis series, House of the Dead series, and Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles & Darkside Chronicles .
First-person shooters are characterized by an on-screen view that simulates the in-game character's point of view. While many rail shooters and light-gun shooters also use a first-person perspective, they are generally not included in this category.
Notable examples of the genre include Doom , Quake , Half-Life , Counter-Strike , GoldenEye 007 , Battlefield , Medal of Honor, Unreal , Call of Duty , Killzone , TimeSplitters , Team Fortress 2 and Halo .
Third-person shooters are characterized by a third-person camera view that fully displays the player character in his/her surroundings. Notable examples of the genre include the Tomb Raider series, Syphon Filter , Max Payne , SOCOM , Star Wars: Battlefront , Resident Evil 4 , Gears of War , and Splatoon . Third person shooter mechanics are often incorporated into open-world adventure and sandbox games, including the Elder Scrolls series and the Grand Theft Auto franchise.
Hero shooters are a variation of multiplayer first- or third-person arena-based shooters, where players, split among two or more teams, select from pre-designed "hero" characters that each possess unique attributes, skills, weapons, and other passive and active abilities; players may have the ability to customize the appearance of these characters, but these changes are usually cosmetic only and do not alter the game's balance or the behavior of the "hero". Hero shooters strongly encourage teamwork between players on a team, guiding players to select effective combinations of hero characters and coordinate the use of hero abilities during a match. Such games are inspired by multiplayer online battle arena games. The class-based shooter Team Fortress 2 is considered to be the codifier of the hero shooter genre. Popular hero shooters include Overwatch , Paladins , Apex Legends and Quake Champions . Hero shooters have been considered to have strong potential as esports games.
Tactical shooters are shooters that generally simulate realistic squad-based or man-to-man skirmishes. Notable examples of the genre include Ubisoft's Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six and Ghost Recon series and Bohemia Software's Operation Flashpoint . A common feature of tactical shooters that is not present in many other shooters is the ability for the player character to lean out of cover, increasing the granularity of a player's movement and stance options to enhance the realism of the game. Tactical shooters also commonly feature more extensive equipment management, more complex healing systems, and greater depth of simulation compared to other shooters. As a result of this, many tactical shooters are commonly played from the first person perspective.
Loot shooters are shooter games where the player's overarching goal is the accumulation of loot; weapons, equipment, armor, accessories and resources. To achieve this players complete tasks framed as quests, missions or campaigns and are rewarded with better weapons, gear and accessories as a result, with the qualities, attributes and perks of such gear generated randomly following certain rarity scales (also known as loot tables). The better gear allows players to take on more difficult missions with potentially more powerful rewards. Loot shooters are inspired by similar loot-based action role-playing games like Diablo . Examples of loot shooters include the Borderlands franchise, Warframe , Destiny and its sequel, Tom Clancy's The Division and its sequel, and Anthem .
Additionally, artillery games have been described as a type of "shooting game", [ citation needed ]though they are more frequently classified as a type of strategy game.
Shooter games have been accused of glorifying and promoting violence and several games have been the cause of notable video game controversies. After school shootings in Erfurt, Emsdetten and Winnenden, German conservative politicians accused violent shooter games, most notably Counter Strike , to incite young gamers to run amok.Several attempts were made to banish the so-called "Killerspiele" (killing games) in Germany and the European Union. Shooter games were further criticised when Anders Breivik, perpetrator of the 2011 Norway attacks, claimed that he developed target acquisition skills by playing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare .
A tactical shooter is a subgenre of shooter games that cover both first-person shooters and third-person shooters genres. These games simulate realistic combat, thus making tactics and caution more important than quick reflexes in other action games. Tactical shooters involving military combat are sometimes known as "soldier sims".
A stealth game is a type of video game in which the player primarily uses stealth to avoid or overcome antagonists. Games in the genre typically allow the player to remain undetected by hiding, sneaking, or using disguises. Some games allow the player to choose between a stealthy approach or directly attacking antagonists, but rewarding the player for greater use of stealth. The genre has employed espionage, counter-terrorism, and rogue themes, with protagonists who are special forces operatives, spies, thieves, ninjas, or assassins. Some games have also combined stealth elements with other genres, such as first-person shooters and platformers.
Shoot 'em up is a subgenre of video games within the shooter subgenre in the action genre. There is no consensus as to which design elements compose a shoot 'em up. Some restrict the definition to games featuring spacecraft and certain types of character movement; others allow a broader definition including characters on foot and a variety of perspectives.
Survival horror is a subgenre of video games inspired by horror fiction that focuses on survival of the character as the game tries to frighten players with either horror graphics or scary ambience. Although combat can be part of the gameplay, the player is made to feel less in control than in typical action games through limited ammunition, health, speed and vision, or through various obstructions of the player's interaction with the game mechanics. The player is also challenged to find items that unlock the path to new areas and solve puzzles to proceed in the game. Games make use of strong horror themes, like dark maze-like environments and unexpected attacks from enemies.
An action game is a video game genre that emphasizes physical challenges, including hand–eye coordination and reaction-time. The genre includes a large variety of sub-genres, such as fighting games, beat 'em ups, shooter games and platform games. Some multiplayer online battle arena and real-time strategy games are also considered action games.
Action-adventure is a video game genre that combine core elements from both the action game and adventure game genres.
The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to video games:
Cooperative gameplay is a feature in video games that allows players to work together as teammates, usually against one or more AI opponents. It is distinct from other multiplayer modes, such as competitive multiplayer modes like player versus player or deathmatch. Playing simultaneously allows players to assist one another in many ways: passing weapons or items, healing, providing covering fire in a firefight, and performing cooperative maneuvers such as boosting a teammate up and over obstacles.
Time Crisis is a first-person on-rails light gun shooter series of arcade video games by Namco. The first installment of the series was released in the arcades in 1995 and later ported to the PlayStation consoles.
A side-scrolling game, side-scroller, or horizontally-scrolling game is a video game in which the gameplay action is viewed from a side-view camera angle, and the onscreen characters can generally only move to the left or right. These games make use of scrolling computer display technology. The move from single-screen or flip-screen graphics to scrolling graphics, during the golden age of video arcade games and during third-generation consoles, would prove to be a pivotal leap in game design, comparable to the move to 3D graphics during the fifth generation. Although side-scrolling games have been supplanted by 3D games, they continue to be produced.
In video games, first person is any graphical perspective rendered from the viewpoint of the player's character, or a viewpoint from the cockpit or front seat of a vehicle driven by the character. Many genres incorporate first-person perspectives, among them adventure games, driving, sailing, and flight simulators. Most notable is the first-person shooter, in which the graphical perspective is an integral component of the gameplay.
Space Gun is a first-person, shoot 'em up arcade game released by Taito in 1990. Space Gun is set aboard a crippled space station that has been overrun by hostile alien creatures. The objective is to rescue human crew members while destroying the alien creatures. The game lets the player shoot limbs off the creatures, resulting in blood splatters.
A variety of computer graphic techniques have been used to display video game content throughout the history of video games. The predominance of individual techniques have evolved over time, primarily due to hardware advances and restrictions such as the processing power of central or graphics processing units.
Third-person shooter (TPS) is a subgenre of 3D shooter games in which the player character is visible on-screen during gaming, and the gameplay consists primarily of shooting.
First-person shooter (FPS) is a video game genre centered around gun and other weapon-based combat in a first-person perspective; that is, the player experiences the action through the eyes of the protagonist. The genre shares common traits with other shooter games, which in turn makes it fall under the heading action game. Since the genre's inception, advanced 3D and pseudo-3D graphics have challenged hardware development, and multiplayer gaming has been integral.
A cover system is a video game gameplay mechanic that allows a virtual avatar to hide from and avoid dangers, usually in a three-dimensional world. This method is a digital adaptation of the real-life military tactic of taking cover behind obstacles, for purposes of attaining protection from enemy ranged or area effect attacks, such as gunfire or explosions.
Gun Buster, also known as Gunbuster (ガンバスター) and released in North America as Operation Gunbuster, is a first-person shooter video game developed by Taito and released for arcades in 1992. In contrast to on-rail light gun shooters at the time, this was one of the first arcade games to feature free-roaming FPS gameplay, the same year Wolfenstein 3D was released on personal computers.
This list includes terms used in video games and the video game industry, as well as slang used by players.