#15: Warcraft: Orcs & Humans Platform: PCYear: 1994
Original review score: Not Reviewed
Though Dune II technically set the modern real-time strategy (RTS) genre into motion, it was Blizzard Entertainment's Warcraft: Orcs & Humans that turned a fringe game style into an international sensation.
Why It Was Innovative:
Warcraft's original website says it best: "Set in the mythic kingdom of Azeroth, players are given the task of maintaining a thriving economy while building a war machine with which to destroy the enemy." Warcraft built upon this simple premise by embracing use of the mouse with an intuitive graphical user interface. Warcraft played a key role in popularizing the mouse, which was soon to become the signature controller of all PC games to come. Blizzard Entertainment capitalized on Warcraft
's success with more trend-setting sequels and spinoffs
, most notably 1998's seminal Starcraft
. Though RTS games aren't quite a mainstream phenomenon in the United States, they enjoy an enormous international following, particularly in the Far East.