10 of the most nostalgic moments for 2000s gamers

12.01.2023 0 By admin

The world of gaming is always trudging forward,and sometimes it’s nice to stop and take a little look back.

It’s Falcon,and today, on Gameranx,10 of the most nostalgic moments for 2000s gamers.

Starting off at number 10,it’s the “Modern Warfare 2” multiplayer experience.

Now, the “Call of Duty”
series was pretty big

by the time “Modern Warfare 2” came out,

but it was really here where the series

became the biggest thing in gaming.

For a lot of people out there,

this was where the series peaked as well.

And even if it was kind of a frustrating

and broken mess at times,

for anybody who was
playing “Modern Warfare 2”

religiously back in 2009,

remembers how big of a deal this was.

Whether you were in
high school playing 1v1

after getting home or
playing in groups online

between classes and college,
this game was everywhere.

People who never talked
to each other before

suddenly became best friends
because of this game.

And even if those friendships

didn’t last past the last day of school…

And I’m not saying that none of them did,

in case you’ve got a lifelong friend

that this is how you met, but
the memories stick with you.

I mean, it wasn’t all great, of course.

The Model 1887s and UMP45s
could really be a nightmare,

along with, you know, all the glitches.

But it didn’t matter. The
game was just that good.

And on top of being
good, it was everywhere.

It was so present.

And number nine is going
on your first rampage

in any GTA game, doesn’t
matter which one it is.

Except “V” which, of
course, came out in 2013.

All the other ones came
out the decade prior.

And you could have started
with “GTA” back in 2001,

all the way up to “GTA IV” in 2008.

I’m gonna exclude “IV’s” DLC

’cause it didn’t really add to the world,

and also came out in 2010.

So we’re talking about the world

that came out in 2008 anyways.

I’m being pedantic here.
None of this matters.

Once you’re free to
explore the open world,

you find a gun somewhere, and
you start shooting, right?

Like, yeah, we all play
a couple of missions

and then the open world is there,

and we’re like, “Eh, let’s try this.”

Usually, you don’t last
long the first time around

’cause, again, you got
like some crappy gun

and you’re just walking around,

you don’t know the cheats yet.

But it didn’t matter.

It was a game that just let
you do whatever you wanted.

You could wander around,
you could cause some mayhem,

get in a police chase, didn’t matter.

And that’s what made it so awesome.

Now throw in the cheat codes.

That’s when it really gets sweet.

Now, these days, it’s not as fun

to just start trouble in games anymore,

at least not most open-world games.

There’s a few exceptions.

But with the “Grand Theft Auto” games

there’s just a real joy to
just start messing around.

It almost feels like a lost art.

(gangster speaking in foreign language)

(guns blasting)
(car horns honking)

– Oh!

– It’s just fun to do stuff

that you know you’re not
supposed to do in a game.

Like, we all know this
stuff is wrong in real life

and would never do it,

and that’s partly why it’s so fun.

At number eight, capping your
friends, like killing them,

from across the map with
the pistol in “Halo.”

If “Modern Warfare 2” wasn’t your big

multiplayer obsession of 2000s,

probably safe to say “Halo” was, right?

Whether it was split-screen
or over a LAN in “Halo 1,”

playing on Xbox Live for
the first time with “2,”

or going nuts with the Forge in “3,”

it doesn’t matter ’cause all
three games were amazing,

especially back then, during
the height of their popularity.

Like there were so many great moments

just playing the original “Halo.”

Realizing how overpowered
the pistol was, for instance.

Or you know, like jousting with Warthogs,

that was a lot of fun.

Rather than being super
competitive like “Modern Warfare,”

“Halo’s” kind of more of a sandbox thing.

It was a place to have
fun and screw around in,

at least, for me.

It’s still a lot of fun to get
into an intense game or two.

Like, that’s not impossible
or anything, and it is great.

But the real entertainment

kind of came from screwing around.

I mean, Rooster Teeth made
an entire media empire

outta just screwing around in “Halo.”

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That’s what “Red vs. Blue” was.

Is? Like, is.

It’s still around. Like, they
make new episodes of that.

And it’s still them
playing around in “Halo.”

Maybe your nostalgic moment

is getting a series of Energy Sword kills

or landing the perfect rocket shot.

It doesn’t actually matter that much.

Just the whole experience

of playing those first “Halo”
games is really nostalgic,

especially for anybody
who grew up with them.

And number seven, installing
Steam to play “Half-Life 2.”

Remember when everybody was complaining

about having to install
Steam to play “Half-Life 2?”

It was one of the most
anticipated sequels of all time,

and Valve had the brass
balls to force people

to install a client to play it,

even if you had the disc version.

I mean, it wasn’t completely unheard of

to have a client in 2004,

like MMOs like “EverQuest”
and “World of Warcraft.”

Actually, just “EverQuest,”

’cause “World of Warcraft,” I think,

came out a week after “Half-Life 2.”

But same thing, right?

More people were complaining
about “Half-Life 2”

if I remember right.

But being forced to sign up for something

was just weird for a single-player game.

And I remember being
pretty skeptical about it.

I mean, looking back
about 20 years later…

It’s been a couple decades, right?

I’m not gonna do the math.

The concern kind of
seems a little ridiculous

considering how ubiquitous Steam is now,

and how beneficial it’s been

for the PC gaming market as a whole.

But at the time we’re all annoyed

about having to install this
seemingly pointless program.

You know, kind of like
how we feel every time

we have to install Uplay
or whatever launcher

some idiot businessman foists
on the gaming division.

Like do they really think

that they’re gonna have another Steam?

I mean, Epic Games had to
massively undercut Steam’s prices,

and their market share is not
even comparable at the moment.

Yeah, Epic is doing pretty
good, but Steam dominates.

They have between 75 and
80% of the market currently,

according to various estimates.

Still, I was really grumbling

through the entire setup process.

But like everyone else I accepted it

’cause I wanted to play “Half-Life 2.”

Back then I probably would’ve let Valve

install a key-logger just
to get “Half-Life 2.”

That’s how much I wanted
to play that game.

And it’s still a classic today.

With the release of “Black Mesa,”

the sort of remake of
the original “Half-Life,”

I mean, that was a while back,

but that’ll always make you
want to play “Half-Life 2.”

But it, it’s just kind
of funny to look back

at all the grumbling
about Steam back then.

Like look at PC gaming today.

Like there are things
about Steam that I like

and things that I don’t,

but I do get a little nostalgic
when I see screenshots,

the old green interface
and the tiny game library.

Back in 2004, I don’t think
anybody would’ve guessed

what Steam would be or how
big it would eventually get.

It’s kind of insane.

At number six, the iconic
start screens of a lot of game.

Like there’s still some
pretty good ones now,

but back in the 2000s, they
really made that into a thing.

Like even before the game started,

the PlayStation 2, GameCube,

and Xbox startup screens were amazing.

Like they were elaborate

and they’d burned through your brain

without being too long or annoying.

(playful upbeat music)

But like, think about
the original “Halo” menu,

that is one of the most
iconic video game things ever.

Every time I would start that game up,

I remember just sitting
for a minute to take it in,

because it would really
put you into that world.

But you could even say the same

for “Need for Speed: Underground,”
which is less atmospheric

and doesn’t have the grandeur
of the “Halo” starting screen,

but it did have “Get Low” from Lil Jon,

which would just hype you to no end.

You were ready to race by
the time you were racing.

Another really good one was
the original “Metro Prime.”

It had this awesome sinister soundtrack

and really good visual effects
that fit the game perfectly.

Like I could list off
iconic intro songs all day.

Like the amazing “Grinder,”
“Red Alert 2’s” theme song.

(upbeat rock music)

The somber menu music to “Max Payne.”

(gentle somber music)

The upbeat earworm that
is “The Sims” theme.

(lively upbeat music)

Like you could probably
list this stuff all day.

This is easily capable of its own video.

There’s little details

you could talk about with all of them.

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But let’s just keep it short

and say there was just some amazing

and nostalgic main menus from the 2000s.

And number five, the rush
of using motion controls

for the first time in “Wii Sports.”

I remember when the Wii was new,

no one really knew quite
what to think about it

when it came out.

A lot of industry people speculated

the gimmicky new machine
would be the end of Nintendo.

And boy, that was dumb.

Not only did the Wii sell
about 20 million more units

than both of its much
more powerful competitors,

the PS3 and the Xbox 360,

but it was pretty much unavoidable.

Like either you had one,
your parents had one,

your friends had one,
somebody in your life had one.

I mean, it was a mega-hit

and it totally reversed
Nintendo’s fortunes.

And the game most people
played first was “Wii Sports.”

That first time you used a Wii controller,

as long as it was working properly

and you were playing a game
that was actually good,

it was kind of magical.

Like you swung the controller

and the guy on the
screen swung the racket.

It felt like this thing would never work

because you’d seen tons
of stuff like this before.

Like maybe you had a Power Glove as a kid

or that weird U-Force thing,

and most of those old
motion control gimmicks

just didn’t work at all.

But this one does.

Like, it works pretty well.

And like, as a novelty, it
does wear off, eventually.

But Nintendo put out a lot
of quality games on the Wii,

so it was a good system
beyond the gimmicks.

Hardly perfect.

Obviously, it was not much more
powerful than the GameCube,

and even the motion
controls weren’t perfect

before the Wii MotionPlus upgrade.

But when it worked, it was a ton of fun,

as long as you didn’t throw it at the TV.

(blows thudding)

(electronic chime)
(audience cheering)

– Down!

– And number four is nailing a
song in front of your friends

playing “Guitar Hero.”

Gimmicky controllers were
all the rage in the 2000s.

We ate them up.

But I cannot think of a gaming phenomenon

that got bigger at the time
that also burnt out so quickly.

Like everyone loved “Guitar Hero” one day,

and the next day, people
stopped caring completely.

I think, again, this is the
subject of its own video.

I don’t think it’s just that
people got bored with it.

I think that there are things

that we can absolutely say about it.

Oversaturated market, too many releases,

the weird splitting of “Rock
Band” and “Guitar Hero,”

et cetera, et cetera.

And then there was that
really awful attempt

to make a new one.

But when it was at its height,

everyone wanted to be the
“Guitar Hero” champion.

Like play all the songs on extreme.

Get a perfect rating on
“Through the Fire and Flames.”

It’s just something you
had to do in the 2000s

to prove your gamer cred.

There’s something so
nostalgic about going back

through the original “Guitar Hero” games

and just screwing around.

I’m nowhere near as good as I used to be,

but it’s fun to try.

The presentation of these
games is still amazing.

And even though any real
guitar player would scoff

at anyone playing these
games with a toy controller,

it’s still a fun game.

Back in the day,

just getting through some of
the harder songs on expert

really made you feel like a god,

especially if you had some friends over

who could barely get through
“I Wanna Rock” on easy, yeah.

At number three,

experiencing Barrens chat
in “World of Warcraft.”

What do you need to say beyond that?

Anyone who played “World of Warcraft”

back when it first came out,
has to remember the Horde chat.

Unless they played Alliance,

but do those people
really matter a whole lot?

What made us so famous
or infamous, whatever,

is how big the Barren zone was.

Basically two massive
zones smushed together,

and all three major starting
zones were connected to it.

So it was there where everyone
in the Horde converged.

Unlike the Alliance,

where everyone’s starting
zones were pretty spread out.

It was inescapable though,
you could try to mute it.

But how many people actually did that?

It was a place where people
argued about politics,

got into petty slap fights,
made tons of stupid jokes.

It was a free for all.

Probably the best and
worst of internet culture

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at least somehow intersects with that.

Like people could be incredibly
generous and helpful,

and they’d be coexisting

with like the most obnoxious
trolls in the world.

It is somehow just kind
of a more innocent time.

And when I think of early
“World of Warcraft,”

Barrens chat’s the thing that
probably sticks out in my mind

more than anything else.

If you were there, you know
what I’m talking about.

And if you weren’t, I
don’t know if you should

consider yourself lucky or unlucky.

But I’ll say, I don’t hang around

“World of Warcraft” anymore,

and part of it is that feeling is gone.

And number two is playing

the iconic openings of various games.

Kind of like the start screen point,

I’m gonna use this as a bit of a catch-all

for some of our favorite
opening moments in games.

Like the first time you see a
chainsaw in “Resident Evil 4.”

That first big combat sequence
in the town was terrifying

for anyone who first played it,

especially when the chainsaw came out.

(chainsaw revving)

“Grand Theft Auto: San
Andreas” has a less flashy

but still amazing opening.

Like who doesn’t remember CJ’s line

after getting dumped in the back alley

at the start of the game?

– Here we go again.

Worst place in the world.

Rolling Heights Ballas country.

– It’s so nostalgic

that it became a meme
more than 10 years later.

I saw someone use that meme yesterday,

like it is that fresh on my mind.

When it comes to open-world reveals

it doesn’t get a lot better
than when you finally exit

Vault 101 in “Fallout 3.”

Or when you see Rapture that
first time in “BioShock,”

what a hell of an intro.

The opening moments of “Arkham Asylum,”

also, still amazing to this day.

Like the entire walk with the Joker,

with the opening credits,
in the multiple fakeouts.

Ah, it’s just, it’s so well done.

“Metal Gear Solid 2’s” freighter sequence

is arguably the best
part of the entire game.

And not just because you’re
playing as Solid Snake

but that does help with
the iconic element of this.

City Escape in “Sonic Adventure 2,”

out running that gun truck.

I mean, come on man.

The 2000s are really just when games

started to go all out with their intros.

There’s, like, too many
good ones to count.

And at number one, playing
Flash games at school

when nobody was looking,

or with teachers who didn’t care

what you did with your time.

It just doesn’t get any
more nostalgic than this.

Like playing Flash games at
school during computer lab,

foundational memory for a lot of us.

And with the Flash format totally dead,

many of these games only
exist in our memories.

Like, the list of freely
available Flash games

is pretty much endless.

Stuff like “Breaking the
Bank” or “Club Penguin,”

hugely popular games.

But my personal affairs were
the Homestar Runner games.

The site itself is pretty nostalgic.

Like you remember Strong
Bad, talking like this?

Yeah, I do.

And you can still play most
of the games on an emulator,

but the experience isn’t quite the same.

Some all-time classics
from that site include

the likes of “Stinkoman,”
“Thy Dungeonman,”

“Peasant’s Quest.”

But pretty much everything on that site

was excellent time-wasters

if you’re a kid with no
money and too much free time.

There’s still plenty of free
games to play online now,

obviously, I’m not saying there aren’t.

But when I think of the
2000s I think of Flash

and all of the insane crap

that turned out to be
incredibly fun, innovative games

that, again, are all pretty
much just gone forever.

And that’s all for today.

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I’m Falcon. You can follow me
on Twitter, @FalconTheHero.

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Right here on Gameranx.