If there’s one thing that’s unfortunate about gaming today, it’s that kids growing up now have completely missed out on the heyday of browser-based Flash games from the early 2000s. While it’s still possible to play many of these old games even after the discontinuation of Flash, it’s not like any new games are being made, and the idea of continuing to play these games after all these years has all but left the collective gaming consciousness for the most part.
Fortunately, there are plenty of people around who still remember this golden era of easily accessible, simple, and free computer games. With this in mind, here is a list of some of the best old-school Flash games from back in the day.
Updated on July 14th, 2023, by Gregory Louis Gomez: Few eras in gaming are as nostalgic as the Flash era has become. For over a decade people made, played, and shared these games all over the internet on websites like Newgrounds.com, addictinggames.com, and many others. While Flash itself is no longer supported, many of the games that relied upon it have been given new life through various means, allowing those who remember them fondly to replay them to this day. Bearing this in mind, we’ve updated this list to include a few more old-school Flash games to the list for fans of the genre to check out if they haven’t already.
11 Territory War (2007)
Territory War is like a simplistic version of the Worms games. It’s a turn-based PVE game where the player and the CPU play as stick figures in a small arena. There are really only four maneuvers the player can make during their turn: move, kick, shoot, or throw a grenade.
Impressively, however, there is an online version where players can battle against other players if they wish. In fact, for many kids growing up around this time, Territory War may have been their first taste of online multiplayer.
10 Interactive Buddy (2004)
What person over the age of 25 doesn’t remember playing Interactive Buddy? This is a game where the only thing the player has to do is simply “interact” with the character on the screen, a little guy made of orbs. He can be blown up, shot at, or tossed around, and he will ragdoll across the screen in a humorous fashion. He will also react to the player’s actions in various ways.
There are even skins for Buddy and all of them are hilarious. He can be made to look like George W. Bush, a Teletubby, or even Napoleon Dynamite (among others).
9 Whack Your Boss (2004)
Flash games from this era often had a dark sense of humor. Considering the state of the internet at the time, this isn’t all that surprising. Whack Your Boss is an excellent example of this because it is simply a game where the player has to choose from a number of different ways to brutally murder their (admittedly rather rude) boss.
The game is a point-and-click affair, with the player merely clicking on an object in their office and watching a cutscene play of the boss character being killed with that object. Once that’s all done, a shadowy man will come and clean up the mess. Rinse and repeat until players find every method with which to whack their boss.
8 Line Rider (2006)
Though it went on to become a huge hit, Line Rider started as perhaps one of the simplest games in the world. All the player has to do is draw a line on the screen, and then watch as the rider traverses it. The game has some physics, so the track has to be drawn in such a way as to account for this. Coupled with a practically limitless drawing capacity, this led to utterly insane course designs for the Rider over the years.
He could be gliding through a forest, plunging into the jaws of a giant monster, or getting thrown around some ridiculously complicated Rube Goldberg-esque track; any one of these would be a common sight during this era.
7 Raft Wars (2007)
If there’s any Flash game that is perfect for siblings to play together, it would be Raft Wars. It’s a simple, turn-based game where the player has to battle various enemies such as pirates, Vikings, and even the next-door neighbors in raft-on-raft combat.
The default weapon is a tennis ball launcher; however, the player can obtain grenades and rockets, and even upgrade their raft, which increases their team from two to three members. There’s also a par score for each level that rewards good players with extra money, so be on the lookout!
6 Madness Series (2003)
The Madness series actually began as a series of animated videos made by Krinkels on Newgrounds in 2002, and shortly thereafter was made into a flash game series by the user, Flecko (with the former supplying the sprites). The first game in the series, Madness Interactive, is a simplistic brawler not unlike the first Thing Thing game (which undoubtedly drew inspiration from Madness).
From here, the series has blossomed into a long-running family of 2D side-scrolling action shooters and animations. In fact, Newgrounds still celebrates Madness Day every year on September 11th. The newest game in the series, MADNESS: Project Nexus, is available on Steam and is a 3D successor to the original Flash version that was released on Newgrounds.
While it was never one of the most popular Flash games ever made, Canabalt is definitely one of the most fun. The premise of the game is simple; run fast and avoid obstacles. The speed at which the player moves increases the longer they run, which is conveniently tracked in the corner of the screen. This means that the longer the player is alive the more difficult it is to avoid crashing into walls and other debris, though there are some strategies to deal with this. The game also has a killer soundtrack that fits very well with the world-ending, alien invasion background.
4 The Fancy Pants Adventures (2006)
When it first came out in 2006, Fancy Pants was a fun and unique twist on the side-scrolling 2D platform genre. Since then, it has evolved into a franchise of its own and has even been ported to several other platforms over the years. The bread and butter of this series has always been its extremely fluid movement and how it’s been integrated, with the traditional simplicity of something like Super Mario Bros.
Fancy Pants can run along and jump between walls at high speeds, slide under barriers, fling himself great distances, and much more. It’s a game series that primarily stresses speed and timing. It’s also got a cute art design and a silly sense of humor that ought to please most fans of the Flash game genre.
3 Thing Thing Series (2005)
The Thing Thing series is a fun side-scrolling action-shooter series with an emphasis on enormous weaponry. The formula is simple and drenched in violence, as the player takes control of Gamma-Class Bio-Weapon Project #154 on his quest for revenge.
Unlike many Flash games, Thing Thing featured a loose story that progressed with each new mainline installment (excluding the Arena releases). The player would progress through each level, violently killing every enemy they can find, and adding new weapons to their collection as they go. The series arguably improves significantly with each release, with the highlight being Thing Thing 4, the edgiest and most gory game in the series.
2 Happy Wheels (2010)
The game that jump-started many YouTube careers, Happy Wheels is one of the most played flash games ever thanks in part to its massive collection of user-generated content. For a while, it seemed like everyone who had a YouTube channel and their mothers were playing this hilariously violent side-scroller, in which players take control of several different characters in order to complete platforming levels.
1 The Last Stand Series(2007)
Zombies were getting to be hugely popular again by the mid-2000s. The Last Stand was kind of like a teaser of what was to come since it was actually what inspired Treyarch to include Nazi Zombies in Call of Duty: World at War. This is rather impressive considering how simple the first two installments are.
The third game, The Last Stand: Union City is more or less a side scrolling open world game that features scavenging, trading and more than a few RPG elements that make it a kind of homage to Fallout 3. It also was one of the few flash games at the time to feature save states, so the player need not start a new game every time they played. The Last Stand series is currently available for purchase on Steam.
More: RPGs That Support Pacifist Runs
#Unforgettable #Flash #Games #Day