16 Innovative Games That Were Way Ahead of Their Time

From 'Herzog Zwei' and 'Winback' to 'Elite' and 'Body Harvest,' these are games that provided the blueprint for today's biggest hits

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Shenmue (1999)

Yu Suzuki's 1999 Dreamcast urban action adventure set in 1986 Japan is looked back on with great fondness and is often credited for pioneering two gameplay innovations that we now take for granted. Most significantly, it's widely regarded as the original open world city game – everything from Grand Theft Auto 3 to Yakuza to contemporary RPGs like Fallout 4, The Witcher 3 and Skyrim owe it a debt of gratitude for its scope and attention to detail. Less popularly, Shenmue is also the originator of the term "quick time event" – those timed button presses that remind us of shitty old CD-ROM games like Dragon's Lair that seem to show up in everything from God of War to Tomb Raider and even Insomniac's upcoming Spider-Man.

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