Multiplayer games have the unique ability of both creating and destroying friendships. Staying up til 3:00am beating a Left 4 Dead campaign on Expert will make you seriously consider adding that stranger who swooped in to replace the useless Bot after your 45th attempt to your last will & testament. And yet, sometimes they could cause a serious rift in your friendship with your BFF deeper than that of Protoss and Zergs. And much of the time, it's all about the map. We now present the 10 best multiplayer maps in videogame history.
First time you spawn in Nuketown, you know that something is up. Something really, really bizarre. You ain't in Kansas anymore. Well, you might be if Kansas was ever picked to have U.S. suburban nuclear testing grounds.
The map itself bursts at the seams with easter eggs. The population sign in town changes with how many people are in game. If you shoot off all the heads of the mannequins spread throughout their tiny houses (yep, one of them happens to be an exact replica of the Brady household), The Rolling Stones' "Sympathy for the Devil" erupts from government loudspeakers. If you take a break from navigating your explosive RC car through perfectly-manicured lawns, you can spot the infamous "double rainbow" in the skyline.
This may be less of multiplayer map than it is a three ring circus. Not to spoil anything, but if you snipe the same guy three times in a row, you'll get called some pretty nasty slurs.
Hands down, one of the best Capture The Flag maps of all time is Halo's Blood Gulch. I could go on about how it is one of the most balanced multiplayer maps out there or how it has some of the choicest sniping locations. However, the best part of Blood Gulch is the emotion it brings out of the gamer. Nothing gets your heart pumping faster than snatching the flag from your enemy's base and hauling Spartan ass to a Warthog where your buddies are furiously waving you in (while at the same time, nearly blowing your eardrums out when they are sitting right next to you). You can't replicate that kind of adrenaline rush.
Sometimes, getting just one flag returned could take hours. A successful capture would emit a victorious, pure-testosteronic chest thump that would rival Donkey Kong and yet, on the other side, a crucial missed sniper shot would bring ultimate shame on your head. That or the remnants of a discarded Bud Light can.
Valve takes on the Karate Kid Cobra Kai mantra for this particular map: no mercy. You can almost see the programmers laughing maniacally, rubbing their sadistic mitts together when they plotted out this brutal obstacle course. The final portion of the map is where it really sizzles. To finish off the campaign, your party is expected rev up three generators spread across the map. This causes the bridge to rise where you can expect to then 21-gun-salute your way to victory. Sounds easy enough. Reviving generators is Zombie Survival 101. But just when you start to wipe the zombie brains from your jeans, you start to think to yourself, "Huh. Come to think of it, I wonder why they decided to call this map The SacrifOHMYGOD."
One of the generators sputters out and someone in your survival party must leave the safety of the partially elevated bridge to turn it back on. No amount of carefully hoarded molotov cocktails or pipe-bombs will save you from this map. Valve forces you to choose. It truly is a sacrifice. This map takes it to a place I've never experience. I haven't forgiven you for this, Valve (but slip me whatever you got on Half-Life 3 so far and we'll call it even).