All massive multiplayer online games: Before There Was ‘Fortnite,’ There Was ‘Starsiege: Tribes’


The formative first-person shooter from Id was a huge hit and a cultural juggernaut , so wanting to top it — or at least grab a slice of the blossoming FPS market — was a worthwhile, if ambitious, goal. Eugene, Oregon–based developers Tunnell and Damon Slye had teamed up to start the generically named Software Entertainment Company in 1983, changing the name to the more distinctive Dynamix the next year. The company, which was acquired by King’s Quest creator and publisher Sierra in 1990, was well known in the ’90s for its adventure games, but it also had a genre-hopping history of flight simulators, tank shooters, and mech games , which came in handy when the studio decided to get serious about entering the FPS arena. Tunnell and Slye’s first game together, 1983’s Stellar 7 , was a futuristic tank sim known for its difficulty, as Tribes would one day be. Author Tom Clancy, who in 1988 named the former one of his two favorite games, said of Stellar 7 , “It is so unforgiving, it is just like life.”

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