Sometimes a game is more than a game. Sometimes the content of our beloved little boxes breaks free from the shackles of time and space to leap into a scared spot in the world of video games where it can influence forever more.
On the rarest of occasions, our virtual vices can have impact on a cultural level too, and that's when we as gamers can stand proud and say we were there first.
These are games throughout time that have spawned something special and managed to dictate the state of play ever since. They helped mould the gaming world as we know it today. Pay your respects.
CALL OF DUTY: MODERN WARFARE
Love Call of Duty or loathe it, there's no getting away from the fact that Modern Warfare is the definitive FPS experience. In fact, if you are a CoD hater, it's probably because you wish today's efforts were closer to recreating the magic of 2007.
Praise goes to Infinity Ward for the game's graphical fidelity and well balanced mechanics, of course, but it was Modern Warfare's online mode that really kicked off the Call of Duty phenomenon.
Fast-paced, accessible, rewarding and incredibly addictive, Modern Warfare came with a multiplayer formula that has informed how we expect to go into online battle ever since. Many have tried to replicate the Modern Warfare feel, none have truly matched it.
Mario and Sonic aside, we can't think of a bigger household name in gaming than Lara Croft. The original Tomb Raider quickly propelled the perfectly proportioned protagonist to iconic status, as she somehow managed to be both a sex symbol for blokes and one of strength and empowerment to girls of all ages.
Let's not forget the actual game itself. Tomb Raider kicked off the action-adventure genre as we know it today with vast environments packed with puzzles, traps and treachery around every corner.
It's a formula that's been replicated over and over and we're sure the developers of a certain other jungle-based actioner wouldn't mind admitting they took some inspiration from Core in 1996.
METAL GEAR SOLID
Metal Gear Solid is now considered the pinnacle of stealth action, but Hideo Kojima's original espionage adventure was the beginning of something much bigger than a bag of great game mechanics.
The story, flavour and legacy of the Metal Gear Solid universe has since become just as legendary as the creator himself. With plots more twisted than an evil pretzel and characters that would look epic eating a banana, Kojima created a world that wrapped people up for the duration, so much that they had to readjust to the real world once they slipped out the other side.
Okay so the cut-scenes are a bit long and there's a lot of talking but never has a title been so cinematic and involving, and so prolific in its gaming credentials at the same time.
In a world where the AK47 is king and kids aren't satisfied unless something is blowing up in their face, LittleBigPlanet was fresh and original but also incredibly positive in terms of the message sent out about video games.
With little Sackboy taking the never previously established role of PlayStation mascot, the platforming title added a creative visual approach to some solid gameplay elements.
LittleBigPlanet shone though because of the way in which it empowered gamers, giving them the tools to create their own LBP levels. And we're not talking about the equivalent of a basic track editor here; the LittleBigPlanet online community suddenly blossomed with bedroom designers creating and sharing platforming levels of such ingenuity that developer Media Molecule actually felt compelled to hire a few of them.