Codex Gamicus

Forsaken is a 3D first person shooter video game. The game was developed by Probe Entertainment for the Microsoft Windows and PlayStation and by Iguana UK for the Nintendo 64, and distributed by Acclaim Entertainment. The game was released on April 30, 1998 in North America, June 3, 1998 in Europe & Australia, and in late 1999 in Japan.

Similar to Descent, Forsaken had a strong following due to its "six degrees of freedom" gameplay, but suffered in popularity to the conventional ground-based 3D first-person shooter games because of its challenging nature.


In the distant future, the advancement of science has exceeded humanity's ability to control it. During a subatomic experiment, an accident causes an uncontrollable fusion reaction, utterly destroying the surface of the planet Earth.

One year later, Earth has been classified as "condemned" by the ruling imperial theocracy, meaning that it is now legal for anyone to salvage anything left on the planet. Mercenaries from all over come to raid the dead planet, forced to battle not only each other, but the robot sentinels that the government has left behind.

Development history[]

The game was developed by Probe Entertainment during the 1996–1998 period as the company became amalgamated into its parent company (Acclaim). At that time, Microsoft's newly bought and re-branded rendering engine (DirectX) had just started to dominate PC development.

The game was heavily technology driven at the beginning and was titled ProjectX. This was changed to Condemned when the story elements were added although it was later changed to Forsaken due to a potential naming conflict.

Due to the heavy technology focus of the game it was often bundled with hardware to show off the cards and was used as a benchmark for many years after the initial release of the game.

This game has an ESRB rating of "M for Mature," it was so rated for violent deaths in the introductory cutscene and the player character's death, which is shown to be flown to wall and gibbed, complete with splotch sound.


Forsaken is primarily a multiplayer first-person shooter. The game may be played in singleplayer or multiplayer modes. The game is based on a 3D-engine that allows unlimited 360-degree movements. This concept is similar to the Descent series. According to a GameSpot review, "Forsaken is, at its core, a Descent clone. But stunning graphics, a dazzling array of weapons, and above-average level design make the whole thing seem fresh."[1]


The singleplayer-mode has four difficulty modes: easy, normal, hard and total mayhem. Each has progressively stronger enemies and less ammo to spare. Due to the near-impossible challenge presented by the latter mode, Acclaim provided the patch 1.00 that (among other things) decreased the difficulty of the game dramatically. There are 15 levels which have to be completed by the player — sometimes within a time limit — and occasionally include a huge end-boss against which the player must exhaust a fair amount of ammunition while dodging excessive retaliatory fire. In order to complete a mission, different efforts must be made by the player such as finding the exit or activating triggers to open locked doors. The primary objective is to destroy the enemies within a level. The enemies are static (turrets launching homing missiles, drones, other mercenaries, etc.), though not all will be spawned at the start of a level. Each level includes a hidden crystal, and once all are collected a secret map is unlocked.


There are six different types of multiplayer games: Free For All (deathmatch), Team Game, Capture The Flag, Flag Chase, Bounty Hunt, and Team Bounty Hunt. There are various sub-options for each.


The Swarm (by Dominic Glynn) performed and produced the Forsaken sound track which features dynamic drum and bass and electronica tracks.


  1. Jeff Gerstmann (1998-05-25). Forsaken 64. GameSpot. Retrieved on 2007-10-05

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