Competitive Multiplayer Action (99)

Starsiege: Tribes (1998)
Offering an extremely balanced and teamwork-oriented gameplay, Starsiege: Tribes was a game that proved to have more to offer than most people initially anticipated (due to being strictly multiplayer).

The widely varying armor and weapons allowed players to truly customize their experience by complimenting their play styles appropriately all while strategically attempting team-based tactics to achieve victory on a huge list of maps and game modes.

Tribes today: Following their initial success, development house Dynamix released a sequel in the series called Tribes 2. Learning from previous design flaws, several significant improvements were made, an important one being heavy authentication for online play which the initial title lacked and as such suffered a large income loss due to piracy.

Shortly after Tribes 2 debuted, Dynamix was closed by parent company Sierra Entertainment. Despite that, a less successful third installment of Tribes was released by licensee Irrational Games. As of 2004, the first and second Tribes titles were made available as freeware and no future titles appear to be in planning.

Epic Games & Digital Extremes
Unreal Tournament (1999)
Shifting its focus from the single player campaign-type game, Unreal Tournament harnessed the multiplayer potential the original Unreal had but ultimately failed to deliver.

Between the flawless weapon balance, realistically entertaining maps and endless gameplay options, Unreal Tournament was claimed by many to be one of the most well rounded first person shooters of its day. Quake III: Arena (mentioned before) was released only ten days later starting an endless debate among gamers on which title was the best multiplayer shooter.

Unreal Tournament today: A decade later both co-developers Digital Extremes and Epic Games are successfully pressing onward and presenting the industry with fantastic titles both inside and outside the Unreal franchise, not to mention the highly acclaimed Unreal Engine. Unreal Tournament (also known as "UT Classic" or UT'99) sequels remain as some of the finest multiplayer action shooters you can get on today.