Top 100 Games of All-Time: #74

Worms Armageddon

Release Date: June 24, 1999 (NA)

Platform Played On: PC

2018 Placement: #69 (-5) (nice)

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What It Is:

Imagine utter chaos distilled into a game about worms with guns. That’s Worms Armageddon. There have been many different iterations of Worms since, but Armageddon in my eyes is still the peak of the series. From the Banana Bomb to the Concrete Donkey to the Super Sheep, it has all the best classic weapons with the greatest worm-based multiplayer of all-time.

In Worms Armageddon you have a team of anywhere from 4-8 worms and you’re fighting against other teams of worms on a highly destructible map. There’s a given turn order and on each worm’s turn they have a limited amount of time to navigate around the map and do as much damage as possible to other worms. You have to make your attacks good ones, hoping to take out the other teams before they get around to taking you out. Sometimes using the map is to your advantage as worms can’t swim and there’s ever-present water lurking at the bottom of the level. It’s a wild party game that’s just an absolute blast to play with friends.

Why It’s Important To Me:

Growing up I spent a lot more time playing local multiplayer than online multiplayer because I grew up with 56k internet. Worms was a college favorite for hot-seat multiplayer where we would all crowd around one PC and take turns moving our worms while having a blast. I remember sitting at HarveyZ’s computer my senior year of college with three or four of us taking turns in wormy destruction. I also remember he had an affinity for ninja ropes (and being bad at actually swinging with them, sending his own worms to their doom about as many times as he was successful with them).

Worms Armageddon specifically has a place in my heart because of the nostalgia for those good college times where we all got together and just shot the shit while shooting bazookas. Especially during the pandemic, I miss the camaraderie of local multiplayer and the excitement from getting a particularly grand banana bomb explosion and taking out several opponents. I’ve tried to rekindle the magic with other Worms games but it’s just not the same over the internet. Sitting together is the optimal way to play this game and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

My Strongest Memory:

I don’t have a specific one associated with this game, just the fond memories of playing it with friends. When I think of this game I can immediately picture the layout of my college senior year apartment and the corner the computer was in that we played this on. That the kitchen was to our left along with a table where all our snacks were within easy reach. I remember that table spent the majority of the year having a Heroscape map built on it as we would regularly rearrange the tiles and have epic battles in that when we weren’t playing Worms or Smash or other games.

I can hear HarveyZ shouting “Nooooooo!” as his worm missed the ninja rope jump and landed in the water with a bloop. I can remember that I named one of my worms “Umlaut” because I liked that word. It’s just one of those games that sparks real, tactile memories even if I don’t have a specific moment that I can instantly recall.

Why It’s #74:

This is one of those remarkable “personal connection” games that I will always have a soft spot for. Mechanically it’s still the best Worms in my opinion and has the best assortment of weapons. Sometimes simplicity just works. I don’t fault them for trying new things and expanding the Worms genre, but man you just can’t top this one. And while I love it and it brings me joy every time I think about it, it’s also just the multiplayer. I don’t think I’d ever play a Worms game without the specific friends I played Worms with growing up. And I’m okay with that.