What’s the First 3D Game in the World 2023?

Which is the first 3D game video game? This might seem like one of those random thoughts that arise in your mind now and then, but when you see how many 3D video games are being made all over the world, it’s hard not to think about what started it all.

So, before we get to the main point of this article, let’s go over the definition of 3D games.

In 2023, the first 3D game in the world holds a special place in the history of gaming. The game was a groundbreaking innovation that revolutionized the way we interact with video games. It paved the way for modern gaming and influenced the development of countless 3D games that followed.

The first 3D game in the world was Maze War, which was created in 1974 by Steve Colley, Howard Palmer, and Greg Thompson. It was a first-person shooter game where players navigated through a maze and tried to shoot their opponents.

Maze War may not be as well-known as modern games like Fortnite or Call of Duty, but its impact on the gaming industry cannot be denied. It laid the foundation for the 3D games we play today and set the stage for the future of gaming. So, next time you play a 3D game, remember the groundbreaking innovation that started it all – Maze War.

 First 3d game in the world

Most people agree that “3D Monster Maze,” which came out in 1981 for the Sinclair ZX81 computer, was the First 3d game in the world ever made. This game was a big deal because it was the first to use 3D graphics and let players get through a maze while a Tyrannosaurus Rex chased them.

J.K. Greye, who lived in the United Kingdom and worked as a programmer and game creator, made the game. Greye was one of the first people to make computer games. He made several famous text-based adventure games. He saw how 3D images could be used in games and set out to make one that would go beyond what was possible at the time.

“3D Monster Maze” was made for the famous home computer in the UK at the time. The maze was made up of simple geometric shapes, and a wireframe model of a T-Rex moved slowly and steadily through it.

Playthrough of the first 3D game, Battlezone, by Shane McComas on YouTube


Even though “3D Monster Maze” was popular, it was only played on the Sinclair ZX81 computer. But it had a big effect on the gaming business, and it paved the way for a new generation of 3D games that came after it.

First 3d game console

The Nintendo 64 (N64), which came out in 1996, was the first 3d game console. The N64 was a big deal in the history of video games because it was the first home system with 3D graphics and had a lot of game-play features that were new at the time.

The N64 was made by Nintendo, a company that has been a leader in video games for a long time. The console had a powerful 64-bit processor and could make 3D graphics of a high grade. The N64 also brought a new type of controller to the market. This controller had an analog stick that let players move their figures in three dimensions.

Nintendo 64 (N64)
Figure 1: source; https://goombastomp.com/nintendo-64-twenty-years-later/ (date accessed28 April 2023)

“Super Mario 64,” which came out at the same time as the N64, was one of its most famous games. This game was a big deal because it was the first one to let you play in an open world. This was made possible by the N64’s 3D graphics. “Super Mario 64” had a huge 3D world that players could explore, achieving goals and collecting stars as they went.

Super Mario 64
Figure 2: source; https://www.nintendo.co.uk/Games/Nintendo-64/Super-Mario-64-269745.html (date accessed28 April 2023)

The Nintendo 64 was the first 3d game console, and it had several groundbreaking features that changed the video game industry for good. The N64’s powerful 64-bit processor and 3D images made games more immersive and interesting than ever before, and the console’s unique controller opened up new ways to play.

First 3d game engine

A team of experts at NASA’s Ames Research Center made the “Maze War” engine in 1974. It was the first 3d game engine. “Maze War,” a game where players navigated a 3D path and shot at each other, was made with this engine. Even though the game itself wasn’t very complicated, the engine that ran it was a big step forward in computer images and set the stage for the first 3d game engine that came after it.

Maze War

The Maze War engine wasn’t used much outside of study, but many of the 3D game engines that came after it were influenced by it. The “Doom” engine, which was made by id Software in 1993, was one of the most important. The Doom engine was a big step forward in 3D game technology. It was used to make some of the most important games of the 1990s, like “Doom,” “Quake,” and “Half-Life.”

Since then, the first 3d game engine has continued to change. Every year, new engines are made and old ones are made better. Unity, Unreal Engine, and CryEngine are three of the most well-known 3D game systems right now.

First 3d game system

The Sega Master System 3-D was the first 3d game system. It came out in 1987. Using special glasses, the Master System 3-D was an add-on for the Sega Master System console that let people play games in 3D.

Sega Master System 3-D
Figure 4: source; https://www.destructoid.com/lets-revisit-nintendos-first-3d-system-the-virtual-boy/ (date accessed28 April 2023)

The “SegaScope” device was used to make the 3D effect on the Master device 3-D. The method worked by showing two different images on the screen, one for each eye. The glasses would filter out the right image for each eye. This made a 3D effect where the games looked like they were coming out of the screen.

There were a few games that worked with the 3d game system that were made to take advantage of the 3D effect. Some of the most famous 3D games for the Master System 3-D were “Zaxxon 3-D,” “Poseidon Wars 3-D,” and “Space Harrier 3-D.”

Even though the first 3d game system was a big deal in the history of video games, it didn’t sell very well. The system was pricey, and there were not many games that worked with it. Also, the 3D effect wasn’t as good as many players had hoped, and the special glasses were hard to wear for a long period.

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First 3d game with polygons

“Star Fox” (called “Starwing” in Europe) for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) was the first 3d game with polygons. It came out in 1993. “Star Fox” was a rail shooter made by Nintendo’s EAD division and written by Argonaut Software. It used the Super FX chip, a custom-made graphics chip, to show 3D polygonal graphics on the SNES.

Star Fox
Figure 5: source; https://www.nintendolife.com/news/2022/04/star-fox-character-designer-wants-nintendo-to-port-the-wii-u-entry-to-switch (date accessed28 April 2023)

Before “Star Fox,” most 3D games used wireframe graphics, which were made up of lines and points to make a 3D world. But “Star Fox” used textured polygons to make graphics that were more lifelike and had more detail. Different special effects, like scaling and rotation, were also used to improve the 3D graphics and make the game more realistic.

“Star Fox” was a big hit with both critics and customers, and its use of 3D graphics was hailed as being unique. The success of the game paved the way for more 3D games, and it encouraged other game makers to look into what 3D graphics could do.

Since “Star Fox,” 3D graphics have become common in current video games, and polygonal graphics are now the standard way to make 3D environments. A lot of famous game engines, like Unity and Unreal Engine, use polygonal graphics to make 3D graphics.

List of the first 3D games

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The first 3D games were:

Here are a few of the oldest 3D games:

  1. Spasim

This game came out in 1974 and is thought to be one of the first 3D online games. It was made by Jim Bowery, and it was played on the mainframe computers on the PLATO network.

  1. Maze War

This game came out in 1974, making it one of the first first-person gun games. Steve Colley made it, and you could play it on the Imlac PDS-1 computer.

  1. Battlezone

Battlezone is a tank shooter game that came out in 1980. It used vector graphics to make a 3D world. It was made and sold by Atari, and arcades were full of people playing it.

  1. Elite

Elite is a space trading and battle simulator game that came out in 1984. It has a 3D environment. It was made by David Braben and Ian Bell, and the BBC Micro and Acorn Electron computers were the first ones to use it.

  1. Starglider

Starglider is a 3D shoot ”em-up game that came out in 1986. It was made by Argonaut Software. It came out on the Atari ST, the Commodore Amiga, and the IBM PC.

  1. 3D Monster Maze

3D Monster Maze is a horror-themed game that came out in 1982. It used wireframe graphics to make a 3D world. Malcolm Evans made it, and it came out for the Sinclair ZX81 computer.

  1. Star Fox

Star Fox is a rail shooter game that came out in 1993 and used polygonal graphics to make a 3D world. Nintendo made it and put it out for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES).

These games were important steps in the growth of 3D gaming and helped pave the way for future games that would use 3D graphics to create immersive gameplay experiences.


In short, 3D gaming is a major change in the world of video games that has changed the way we play and interact with games. The first 3d game in the world was very innovative for their time and helped build the basis for the games we play today. From the first 3d game engine to the first 3d game console, each step in the development of 3D gaming has been a big deal that has pushed the limits of technology and creativity.

As technology keeps getting better, there are more and more ways to play 3d games. As virtual reality and augmented reality get better, 3d games are becoming more engaging and real than ever before. The way we play games is changing because of these new tools, and they are also giving us new ways to have fun and learn.

In closing, the future of 3d gaming is exciting, and it will be interesting to see what innovations and technologies come out in the years to come. Since the beginning, 3d gaming has come a long way, and it will continue to change and grow in the years to come.

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