Modding is generally not a thing that many people can say that they are good at. I for one wouldn’t even know where to start if say I wanted to mod an amazing laser beam gun into my favourite game or even start to do more complicated things like generating whole new maps and in some cases games for people to enjoy. It is a good thing for me and for the gaming community then that there are a few very dedicated bunch of people that do know what they are doing and some of the things they have produced have been astounding. So here is a rundown of my favourite mods of the past few years (in no particular order).

Nightmare House 2- Developed by (Source engine mod)

Forget F.E.A.R, forget Resident Evil, this game is truly scary. One of the scariest and weirdly enjoyable horror games I have ever played, Nightmare House 2 uses the might of the source engine to deliver some great lateral thinking due to the awesome physics engine and really engulfs you into the world. The story may be a bit guff and somewhat watered down in terms of actual plot, but there are some outstanding coding behind the stuff these guys do. In one part of the game, you enter a long corridor which you continue to walk down only to find a dead end wall. You turn around to travel back and the doors which you used to get into the room have now disappeared. Turn around and walk back up the hallway and you notice the hallway is slightly shorter. Finding no way of escaping you turn around again to find the ends of the corridor even closer. You keep pacing the corridor looking to see if you missed something, the walls continuing to move while you aren’t looking. The walls finally reach a metre apart with you in the middle, the lights burst into nothing and once you return to sanity all that is left in the smell of poo rising up from your pants. The subtle scares in this are really what makes the game so brilliant and many people don’t even see some of them. Nightmare house 2 is a great mod which will fill up at least 8 hours of play time.

Garry’s Mod- Developed by Garry Newman (not that one) and Valve (Source  engine mod)

How many games can you say you were creating a rocket powered car that had hundreds of turret on the front one minute and building a huge complicated chain reaction of boulders and explosions the next? Garry’s mod hands you a huge bunch of tools and give you the freedom to do whatever the heck you want with them. Also running behind the graphics is the source engine so the physics yet again are spot on. The community that is behind the game is what makes the game even more incredible releasing new items, maps and sounds for the players to tinker with and make what they want. A highlight of mine was the nuke gun which would do exactly what is said on the tin releasing a deadly explosive charge screaming in the direction where you point the rather small gun’s barrel. The machine gun fire mode suitably recreated the same explosion on the screen inside my laptop though instantly closing the game. However, as I know all too well, crash the game 500 times and you get an achievement. Mad eh? Garry’s mod is pretty much a way of pushing the source engine to the max and gaining a lot in the way of fun while doing so.

Yogbox- Mod compilation put together by the Yogscast (Minecraft mod)

Minecraft, not exactly a game where you think, “Well there’s not much to do really”. Well, imagine taking everything that Minecraft has, multiplying it by the biggest number you can count to, doubling that and taking off one then you may just be close to how much this huge collection of mods adds to the game. There are many mods gathered in this collection, some subtle like the timber mods which allows you to cut down the stump of a tree and the whole thing will fall down to the huge ridiculous ones like equivalent exchange which revolves around gathering as much waste as you can and trading it using some weird type of magic to get the next best thing and so forth. For instance 512 cobblestones will bag you one diamond block. However, if you manage to make dark matter, a whole bunch of new tools are given to you which will destroy blocks almost instantaneously and make your job of collecting blocks much easier. Weird and wonderful at times, the YogBox truly is a great mod to have.

The Cube Experimental- developed by SureAI (Fallout 3 mod)

Fallout 3 in terms of DLC was a bit pants bar Broken Steel maybe. It’s a good thing that there was an absolute tonne of people who loved the game enough to get to work adding more and more to the game. One of the best and if not the best mod one the game was The Cube Experimental which was a technically astounding quest added to Fallout 3. You wake up in a bedroom not knowing how you got there and as you spend more and more time trying to get out of THE CUBE you realise things aren’t quite as they seem. This mod has everything. Great story, voice acting, a huge map full of hidden routes and paths and some amazing yet not overpowered guns. This mod not only challenges your ability to kill everything but also your brain as you will constantly have to solve increasingly hard puzzles to progress through the map. Everything is so slick and flawless it feels like it was destined to be part of the Fallout universe and if you don’t use a walkthrough, the mod can last around 6-8 hours of play.

San Adreas Multiplayer (SAMP)- developed by (GTA: San Andreas mod)

San Andreas was a stellar game, more than that it was incredible to be frank, a huge world with so much to do. The only thing missing was multiplayer (although it was offered as an Easter egg type of thing where you could do co-op on console with countless restrictions). Some guys brought it upon themselves then to build up SAMP one of the most incredible mods I’ve seen which runs countless server with thousands of people each day joining them. You can earn money from jobs, buy cars, guns and run away from the cops. Everything you love about GTA is brought online.