Halo: Combat Evolved, a defining console first-person shooter and one of the first big console esports, has been inducted into the World Video Game Hall of Fame, the Associated Press reports.
The class of 2017 marks the third year of inductees to the hall, which is located at the Strong museum in Rochester, New York. Other inductees this year include Donkey Kong, Pokémon Red and Pokémon Green, and Street Fighter II.
“Until ‘Halo’s’ launch, the most successful shooters required a personal computer and the precision offered by a high-quality mouse,” said Strong Associate Curator Shannon Symonds to the AP. “‘Halo’ proved a console could be just as effective, if not better, than a PC.”
Halo: CE marked the beginning of the franchise and a new era in gaming, as it was a launch title for Microsoft’s original Xbox in 2001. Since then, there have been numerous sequels, spinoffs, books, action figures, and even a TV series. Microsoft even named its virtual personal assistant in its Windows operating system after the game’s artificial intelligence character, Cortana.
Halo also changed the way that people thought about competitive gaming on consoles. As the game was released before the inception of Xbox Live, LAN was the only way to play the game competitively and the game helped give birth to console esports as a whole—it was featured in competitive play until late 2004, when it was replaced by Halo 2.
Over $264,000 across 38 tournaments was awarded in Halo: CE, according to esports payout tracking site Esports Earnings. A remastered version of the game, Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary, was released in 2011.
The class of 2017 joins the likes of Super Mario Bros., Tetris, Pong, Sonic the Hedgehog, Pac-Man, and World of Warcraft in the Hall of Fame.