While initially exclusive to the PC platform, the extensive replayability offered through expanding multiplayer options to the internet has been a driving force behind gaming's success.
Whether it's Steam, Xbox Live or the PlayStation Network, online gaming is now more popular than ever, with millions of gamers logging in every day to test their skills against others around the world. Online communities have grown substantially, cultivating their fanbases and growing their audiences in the process. How much fun you'll get out of these features often depends on your overall skill level.
The following ten games boast enormous online communities who have often dedicated thousands of hours into mastering every element of their gameplay; they're certainly not friendly to newcomers, kerb-stomping those less skilled and smashing those who attempt to improve. They have also broken into the competitive scene, with the best players participating in the hopes of winning substantial cash prizes every year.
Across both PC and console, these ten games are a serious test of player's mettle, often putting off newcomers or boasting a substantial learning curve that's tough to get to grips with.
10. Counter Strike: Global Offensive
Kicking off the list is Valve's wildly popular competitive shooter. Counter-Strike started off as a mod developed by Minh "Gooseman" Le and Jess "Cliffe" Cliffe, and it has gone on to become one of the most popular entries in the industry.
Its premise is incredibly simple: five players as Counter-Terrorists, the other five as Terrorists. One side plants the bomb, the other attempts to stop them, no respawns allowed. The pacing is tense and unforgiving, its carefully crafted weapon handling tailored over four main releases. The latest and most well known is Global Offensive from 2012.
Counter Strike has been a constant fixture of the PC platform for years and by barely changing its core gameplay, the players you'll encounter rank among the most dedicated and viciously skilled in the FPS genre. Be prepared for instant death time after time from much of the community as you attempt to get to grips with weapon shop management, tracking the enemy through sound and taking careful aim at the enemy team as you make your way through the tight levels. The challenge is doubled if you attempt to take on competitive mode, with coordinated teams making mincemeat of those that challenge them the higher you climb up the ranking.