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Underrated and Upcoming Retro Boomer Shooters! Bitter, Dread Templar, KVLT, and, Ashes.

The Boomer shooter revival appeared in the 2010's due to the tiring generic first-person shooter games from mainstream AAA publishers. Quick/fast-paced gameplay, Maps, Secrets, Health/Ammo pick-ups. These are one of the most important key elements in 90's shooters and you don't see these often.

Dusk, Wrath: Aeon of Ruin, and Graven are just a few of the retro-shooters of this revival.

Those games are underrated, but have already been covered multiple times by the press, but lets look at these underrated "underrated" retro shooters. 

Ashes 2063

Developed by Vostyok

Some time in the next century, governments and world leaders embarked on the greatest and most terrible war in our history. Although brief, what started as a local war of attrition soon raged out of control. The weapons the armies of that time wielded were incredibly powerful, reducing much of the planet to cinders. People, cities, even whole continents ceased to exist in a mere few hours.

Not content with a life of toil working the dessicated soil, or a short one fighting in the militia, you are a scavenger, junker, Stalker. The names are many, but the profession remains the same - searching the lost remnants of the old world for whatever valuables you can find. The people around you fear you for what you are and what you may someday bring back. You are a thief, a scoundrel. Without you, humanity would starve. But remember that the old world will not give up it's treasures easily. Bringing back something worth the risk is a miracle. Coming back alive is a success. Everything else is fate.

Ashes is a Post-apocalypse themed Total conversion, designed to be run in the Gzdoom or Qzdoom ports, and includes support for either software or hardware options. Set decades after a worldwide catastrophe has reduced most of the country to toxic wasteland, the player takes on the role of a scavenger searching the ruins of "The City", a once thriving metropolis, for valuable items. You play as a scavenger named Scav, trying to survive in the wasteland. Add bands of mutant cannibals, limited ammunition, and a mysterious group of gas-mask wearing para-military types prowling the rubble. Heavily inspired by 90's FPS games, 80's post-apocalyptic movies, and a shit-ton of other references from Doom, Mad Max, Fallout, etc., Ashes is 10,001% more interesting and engaging than Rage 2. 

This conversion mod is a work of art and Vostyok is a true "game auteur" but other developers were involved too. What also makes the game great is its original soundtrack composed by Primeval a.k.a John S. Weekley. The soundtrack is great, it sounds retro-modern, and full of eargasim compared to generic mainstream music soundtracks. 

This mod captured what most AAA titles can't get right with post apocalyptic settings. I don't know exactly why but I absolutely loved every moment of this mod. The atmosphere, the weapons, the sense of having to scavenge and save ammo. It's amazing and overall, a work of art.

This should be a series on Steam. I wouldn't mind paying for a game like this. 

Episode 1 is available to download via ZDoom (Requires GZDoom)

Ashes 2063: Dead Man Walking

Developed by ReformedJoe

In the wasteland, death comes fast and it comes easy. It doesn't take much: overconfidence, a moments inattention or just a little bit of bad luck. Carpets of parched bones speak to this brutal truth.

You reflect on this thought as you fade in and out of consciousness, lungs half filled with a mixture of brackish ditch slime and your own blood. It only took a second. A moment where you looked right instead of left, and then some bandits bullet was embedded deep in your chest. You didn't even have the strength to fight them off as they stripped your pockets, stole your weapons and rode off on your bike.

But you're harder to kill than most people. And you're going to pull yourself out of that ditch, back onto your feet, and set about finding those bastards.

You are The Scav.

You are a ... Dead Man Walking.

Ashes: DMW is an expansion campaign ( or dlc, as the kids call it these days), for Vostyoks Ashes 2063. You reprise your role as the Scav, hunting the wasteland for those who tried to kill you.

DMW was developed with the approval of Vostyok, who was very helpful throughout the entire process.

It Features:

  • 3 new levels of mutant-blasting, vent-crawling, radiation-sickness-getting action.
  • 1 new town map.
  • 5 New tracks by PRIMEVAL, the very same gentleman who made the awesome Ashes 2063 Soundtrack.
  • The same Ashes gameplay you all know and love

You can download this expansion. (Requires Ashes 2063 and GZDoom to play)

Ashes Afterglow

Developed by Vostyok

Sometime in the last century, a one-megaton blast annihilated the city of New York. Subsequent explosions rippled across the globe, triggered by an unknown aggressor. The face and nature of the world was changed forever. Out of the ruins have emerged bizarre and twisted monsters, strange, otherworldly phenomena and a people driven by savagery.

In the desiccated heart of old America, settlements struggle to survive the eerie wastes, mutated lifeforms... and each other.

You are a scavenger. Stalker. Junker. The names are many but the profession remains the same - discover the lost treasures of the old world and get back home in one piece.

But the world before will not easily give up its secrets, and even now new powers are emerging, also keen to claim their share.

Ashes: Afterglow is the upcoming episode of Ashes.  Following the events of 2063, Afterglow finds the scavenger recovering from the battle within The Spire. Things in The City have taken a turn for the worst, and it looks like you'll be needing to leave town... before they throw you out. Unfortunately, transportation is another issue entirely. You'll need to hurry though. Events have been set in motion that affect the fate of mankind itself. And a mysterious voice from the past returns, promising to remake America... at any cost.

New enemies, locations, weapons and more! 

This seriously needs to be a full-game series, it's got potential.

Download the demo


Developed by Salvador Hernandez Jr

Play as the Sourman as you venture through the hostile jungles in this Retro-FPS platformer powerd by Unity and inspired by the likes of Turok and Powerslave.


In a far distant future, humanity is all but wiped out by the mighty forces of the vile Gormagon. 

In a last ditch effort, they send you, the Sourman on a lone mission to Gormagon's home-world to take the head honcho out on their turf.

The Mission is practically suicide and it'll take a BITTER bastard to pull it off, luckily that's YOU!


Run, Jump, and Shoot through Gormagon's home-world exploring through hostile jungles, enemy tech-bases, and lost temples as you seek the artifacts of power required to defeat them.

Fight through the hordes of Gormagon's army like the ever vicious Hatchet, the squads of Bastards, the mechanical horror of the XR-Minors, and the ever deadly Bosses that await you.

Wield powerful weapons like the Double-Barreled Tomboy Shotgun, the every handy Scrappy Joe Machine Gun, or heck even a Rat.

The game nor a demo is out yet. But there's a development blog to keep you up to date on the game development progress.

Steam Wishlist

Dread Templar

Developed by T19Games

Dread Templar is a fast-paced first-person shooter that combines elements from both modern retro shooters and classics from the 90s. You are a Dread Templar seeking his revenge deep in the evil realm. Explore the levels and solve puzzles to find hidden weapons and upgrades. Face hordes of demons and bloodthirsty fiends using ninja equipment, firearms, and infernal weapons that will make YOU the scariest thing in hell. Gain Dread Powers and customize your skills according to your playstyle, as they will help you in your battle against the dark forces.

The reason for the confusing name change was another company was trying to take the game down and threatening with DMCA and Trademark abuse. Bummer.


  • Dread Templar uses elements from both modern retro FPS and classic shooters such as fast-paced gameplay, dashing, headshots and bullet time so you can enjoy the old-school shooting games in a modern way!
  • Customize your weapon skills to fit your own playstyle and fight against the demon hordes.
  • More than 10 types of weapons in the game including katana swords, firearms and infernal guns!
  • Explore side areas and secret places, solve interesting puzzles and get rewards.
  • Handmade retro art style - all elements in the game including weapons, demons, and levels are done in a retro pixel art style reminiscent of the 90s shooters.

Out now on Steam (Early Acess) and full game expected to be released around Fall 2022

T19's old development log.

Dread Templar GB

Developed by T19Games

A Gameboy style FPS spin-off. It was made just in 7 days. 

Back in 1991, this is what Dread Templar would have looked like if it had a GB version, a total of 3 levels, 3 weapons. Check it now, let's get the feel about what FPS might look like in 1991. 8-bit music is from DavidOburke.

You play this on your browser!


Developed by Evil Guinea Pig

KVLT is an upcoming Retro Shooter set in a obscure and grim version of WW2 created by Argentinian developer, Evil Guinea Pig.

KVLT is brutal and visceral, like your favorite 90's shooters, with a deep focus on level exploration and fast paced combat. You are Lazar, an occultist and cold blooded mercenary, fighting to unveil the eldritch secrets that hide beyond the war theater.

Not much known about the game, except for the reveal trailer. 
The game looks like a combination of Rise of the Triads (2013), Wolfenstein series and a little bit of Doom 3 and The Darkness.


Blood West

Developed by Hyperstrange

Created by Polish developer, Hyperstrange. Blood West, an immersive Wild West FPS where a revenant desperado takes on the twisted demons and eldritch horros in a cursed, desolate mining town. Hell is empty and all the devils are here! Plan your steps, be stealthy, gain advantage, manage your resources, and paint the world dark red!

After you die your soul moves on to where it suppose to. Heaven or hell. But if the body is denied its rest six feet under, the soul is doomed to stick around a little longer. The world's gone mad, broken, and cursed, and the last thing worthy of faith and reverence is the double-barreled shotgun at your side.

■ Challenging FPS combat
■ Stealth tactics or guns blazing bravado
■ Exploration and resource management
■ Trait-based character progression
■ Non-linear immersive gameplay

You can wish-list it now on Steam


Developed by Spytihněv

Some Czech boomer got traumatized in early 90s by the fall of Czechoslovakia, but luckily he was strong enough to overcome by playing Quake and Chasm in his bunker. 25 years later he created this.
And it's a good game.

HROT is a single-player retro FPS set in a small socialist country neighboring Soviet Union (Czechoslovakia) after an unspecified disaster in 1986. Those times were dark and terrifying and so is the game. The game is very brown for it's aesthetic and dark chilling atmosphere.

You start in a civil defense shelter deep under a Prague Metro station. As a proud holder of the military readiness badge you know what your duty is: put on a non-functioning gas mask, load the vz. 52 pistol and protect the peace and your socialist homeland from the strange intruders*.

  • The classic gameplay and vibe of romeric shooters from 1990s including a fitting brown retro aesthetic.
  • You'll find a shotgun, a vz. 13 SMG, a rocket launcher and even some secret experimental Soviet battery-powered weapons (e.g. a ball lightning launcher). If you run out of ammo, you might find the hammer and sickle coming in handy.
  • Handcrafted levels inspired by real locations with an emphasis on historical details. Every level contains socialist paraphernalia which nowadays can only be found in museums or your grandma's attic (Eastern Bloc only).
  • Flushable toilets and destructible light bulbs.
  • A custom engine written in Pascal imitating 1990s software-style rendering with unfiltered textures and polygon jitter.
Czech yourself before you riggity wreck yourself.

Episode 1 is now in early access on Steam.

Just like the Vinyl revival, what goes around comes around. Something old-fashioned will come back eventually.

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