I’ve been in a particularly listy mood the past week. I’ve been trying to think of something good to list about for a while now; maybe about some movie genre or current TV shows or something… But then I thought why not do a completely introverted list of all the video games I’ve played in my life that have meant something to me?
If you’re in your mid-20s / late-30s (I’m 27), then this list may be particularly nostalgic for you. I’ve basically owned video game systems my entire life, most often times being in the target demographic for the system when it came out. I wasn’t a 20-year-old college student when Genesis came out, playing it in my dorm room or something. I was like 6 years old! Starting when I was a kid I’ve owned NES, Game Boy, Genesis, N64, Virtual Boy, Playstation, Dreamcast, Playstation 2, GameCube, Game Boy Advance, Wii and Playstation 3. In addition to that I used to play a bunch of shitty-yet-awesome CD-ROM games on our family computer too. I was practically raised on this mind numbing interactive entertainment.
This is NOT a list of the best video games of all time. While that is a highly subjective topic (well, what list isn’t?), I don’t claim to be listing anything resembling a remotely universal collection of masterpieces. These are just the games I’ve played over the last 20-some years that I’ve enjoyed the most.
So why might this list be of value to you to read?
1. I hate almost all first person shooters and massively multiplayer online thingamajigs. And also a lot of adventure games involving shooting. I’m just not good at shooting things. There might be one or two on the list, but you won’t find anything like Call of Duty, Halo, Resident Evil, Metal Gear Solid, or World of Warcraft taking up spots.
2. I tend to enjoy very weird and gimmicky things. Throw in some peripheral equipment and/or a nonsensical gameplay element, and you’ve got my attention.
3. I had a very nerdy childhood, and spent a lot of time open-mouthed gawking at games I look back on now as something that would keep a mentally disturbed person occupied for long periods of time in an insane asylum.
4. I don’t actually play that many modern games. Mainly because the market caters to FPS and MMO games, which I just said I don’t play. So you might get a few “Oh yeah, I remember that game!” nostalgic moments from some of the older games.
5. I’ve never owned any form of the Xbox. I’ve held an Xbox controller in my hand maybe 20 times in my life. So there are zero Xbox games on this list. Because, well, fuck Xbox…
75. The 7th Guest (PC)
This game was kind of like Mist, only there were ghosts, and stuff actually happened. It was basically a classic PC adventure game, where you go around and solve spooky puzzles to advance to other parts of the haunted mansion. I know very early in the game two ghosts had invisible, yet audible sex. I was in elementary school when I played this. The game was pretty creepy for being so poorly made. I made it pretty far, but I don’t think I ever fully beat it. I still have the original game in its original case, maybe I should reinstall it and give it another go around now that I’ve advanced and gotten my elementary school diploma since then.
74. To the Earth (NES)
Awesomely retarded blaster game for NES where you have to shoot aliens and asteroids flying at the window of your space ship. It would almost always end up with me standing a foot away from the TV rapid firing shit everywhere, and I would still lose. Did that stop me from playing it over and over again for several years? No.
73. Spy vs. Spy (NES)
Pretty simple game: you go around a mapless building, setting traps in every fucking thing you see (windows, closets, desk drawers, coat racks), then hope that the other spy ends up setting off one of your traps. That, or you end up in the same room together in which a hilariously frantic knife fight breaks out.
72. Super Paper Mario (Nintendo Wii)
Cool twist to regular Paper Mario, because now you can go in between 2D and 3D. It’s fun switching between dimensions, and a pretty fun game to play overall. I think I may have gotten hung up on a stage and took a hiatus from playing it for a while. But it’s still a good game to play despite that. It’s got Wiinnovations!
71. Mario’s Tennis (Virtual Boy)
It was the only good game for Virtual Boy. And believe you me, I had my eyes glued in that dumb device for hours (without taking the recommended vertigo breaks), playing this game for several weeks straight. It was legit fun. On a possibly related note: I got my first pair of glasses a few months after I got the Virtual Boy for Christmas. Must be coincidence.
70. Bomberman 64 (Nintendo 64)
I’ve always enjoyed the Bomberman games but didn’t really love them. Maybe it’s because I never owned any of them until Bomberman 64. I just played earlier versions at friend’s houses. But B64 had the classic gameplay that led to awesome multiplayer, and the single player platforming modes kept me busy during lonely times. I don’t know if this game holds up at all, but I remember having a ton of fun playing it for a period of time 13 or 14 years ago.
69. Toejam & Earl (Sega Genesis)
Two stoner aliens wandering around outer space getting attacked by random bullshit while looking for their spaceship. Such elegant beauty.
68. Chip and Dale’s Rescue Rangers (NES)
Underrated side scrolling platformer featuring everyone’s favorite Indiana Jones chipmunk cosplayer and his gay lover. Gadget remains a sexy anthropomorphic lady.
67. Battletoads (NES)
Fun, really challenging, and innovative side scroller about SOME CHILL ASS TOADZ WITH GNARLY SUNGLASSES. RIGHTEOUS! I don’t think I ever actually beat it all the way through without the help of Game Genie, but it was still really fun regardless.
66. The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker
After my lone play-through of this game right when it came out, I was actually pretty disappointed with it. I think of all the Zelda games it had the least emotional impact. Not really that I was hoping it would make me cry or happy or anything, but it just didn’t give me the “wow” factor that other Zelda games have. I never felt amazed that I was playing it. And there’s even less in the story department than the already slim story lines Zelda games usually have. It was just a huge pile of gameplay and neat cell shaded visuals. But in retrospect, the gameplay was pretty fun, and I had a good time overall playing it. Tingle has slightly too large a role in this game, however… No excuse for letting the Jar-Jar of the Zelda games get that much screen time. The game also helped ensure I definitely wouldn’t be meeting any girls during the month I played it my freshman year of college. Thanks…
65. Super Mario World (Super Nintendo)
I know this is a jerk off worthy game for a lot of people, but in terms of my life, I never owned a Super Nintendo or this game. I had a lot of fun playing it, but I never had any alone time with it. So I’m saying, yes it’s a great game, but it didn’t impact me as much as it should have. I think I’ve collectively played every stage at some point or another in my life, however.
64. Mutant League Hockey (Sega Genesis)
I’m not a huge hockey fan, but you put a team of skeletons against a team of goblins, I’m there. Good lord I am there. Much more fun (or at least; functional) than Mutant League Football. By the way, why have they never rebooted this series of games? I’m pretty sure Madden 2012 would instantly be better if all the players were Halloween characters and could murder each other on the field.
63. Day of the Tentacle (PC)
Another game I couldn’t quite beat as a child, but I did get pretty far. I would love to play this one again nowadays since, once again, I’m now smarter than 5th grade Scott. It was hilariously offbeat, and I miss games like that.
62. Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz (Nintendo Wii)
Seems like a really stupid game upon first glance. But then you start playing it and four hours later you realize you haven’t eaten dinner and you’ve pissed your pants.
61. Ren and Stimpy: Stimpy’s Invention (Sega Genesis)
All of my current immaturity, profanity, and lack of general hygiene probably stem from my childhood obsession with Ren & Stimpy. I was (hey, still am actually) one of the the biggest fans of that show there ever was. I bet if you played the Royal Canadian Kilted Yaksmen song right now, I would start singing along to it loudly. From memory. I owned all the VHS tapes, all of the soundtracks, currently own everything on DVD (including the Adult Party Cartoons), and you take ALL of that away from me… I’d still say this was a fantastic side scrolling game.
60. Mario Golf (Nintendo 64)
Like all Mario products, you ended up getting something so much more than the simple concept of “golf” indicated. I like the 64 one better than the GameCube one, though, the Cube one had the ability to taunt your opponents in the most annoying way possible. u-u-u-u-u-u-una-uuna-una-una-uu-u-u-u-u-unabe-unabel-u-u-u-una-unnabelieve-una-unabelievada-u-u-u-una-una-unabelievadabALL. Ah, ya just mashin it…
59. X-Men (Arcade)
Whenever I would take a jolly old trip to Enchanted Castle (i.e. the place where parents could drop their kids off with $15 and not have to come back for 6 hours), it was always a thrill to get a 6 person game of X-Men going. I was always Nightcrawler. Best mutant power in that game next to Colossus and his rage bursts. WELCOME TO DIE!
58. Streets of Rage 2 (Sega Genesis)
When you think of “brawler” games… c’mon, isn’t this the first thing that comes to your mind? YOU CAN BE A BOXING KANGAROO AS A PLAYABLE CHARACTER.
57. SimCity 2000 (PC)
I actually ended up building some decent cities in this game. Nothing to brag about, really. But pretty good for an underachieving dolt. They were fully functional societies; with growing population, efficient energy supply, low crime, and plenty of things to do. Then I would get frustrated and unleash tornadoes all over the place. I WAS GOD.
56. Aladdin (Sega Genesis)
Set a pretty solid standard for movie based video games that has more often than has not been met. Just realizing it right now as I type this… Aladdin murders a TON of people throughout the course of this game.
55. Street Fighter II (Arcade)
Another game I loved to dump my tokens into on Enchanted Castle visits. I loved being Blanca and trying to trap people in the corner and electrocute them to death. It was all fun and games until the smelly nerd with the dragon shirt showed up and actually knew how to play the game correctly. Fuck that guy.
54. Diddy Kong Racing (Nintendo 64)
It was never as good as Mario Kart, but I’m pretty damn sure this game took up plenty of our time for a several month stretch.
53. Final Fantasy III (Super Nintendo)
Admission: I’ve never actually played this game myself all the way through. But I have watched my friend Eitan (the current keyboardist for Company of Thieves [BUY THEIR ALBUMS]) beat the game more than once just from hanging out at his house and watching him play it from start to finish when we were kids. It was darkly themed, the turn based gameplay near perfect for the time, and it had a deeply engaging storyline. I should probably pick up the three dimensional converted Game Boy Advance version and play through the whole thing by myself, but ya know, I’m still trying to catch up on Breaking Bad or some shit.
52. Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?
I spent a bunch of time as a kid trying to track down that bitch. And I loved doing it. I even had an almanac to help me figure out facts, even busted out an encyclopedia someti- wait a second… I WAS LEARNING THINGS THE WHOLE TIME! IT WAS AN EDUCATIONAL GAME DISGUISED AS A FUN DETECTIVE GAME… DAMN YOU SANDIEGO!!!!
51. Contra (NES)
UP UP DOWN DOWN LEFT RIGHT LEFT RIGHT B A START. That’s the only way this game wasn’t a total fart.
50. Driver (Playstation)
Before GTA 3 there was Driver. You never got out of your car, though. Still, this was one of the first games I got for Playstation ( I got the system some time after release), and I was blown away by how fun it was. Very fond memories of having 50 cop cars chasing me all over the hilly streets of San Fransisco.
49. Baten Kaitos (Nintendo GameCube)
Totally overlooked and underrated RPG for the GameCube. It had a good fighting system, and a neat Magnus developmental system that kept things interesting. to be honest, I don’t remember the specific story all that much, but I definitely do remember liking it a lot during the time I actually played it. Was this like the only RPG ever released for GameCube?
48. Turtles in Time (Super Nintendo)
Undeniably fun game, though, unbearably easy to beat in like an hour with 4 of your friends. ooooOOOOOOOO SHELLLLL SHOCK!
47. Donkey Konga (Nintendo GameCube)
Now, while this was an incredibly fun game to play, I would also like to point out that we were way to old to enjoy it when we were playing it. But damn, did we enjoy it. KONGA. KONGA. DON. DON. KEY. KONGA. I let Keith win that Donkey Konga tournament we had, by the way. We were both too good, it would have went on for hours! Ohhhh, how I wish I could smash a plastic drum and clap to “On the Road Again” once more…
46. Road Rash II (Sega Genesis)
So many times in my real life do I want to beat the person driving next to me with a metal chain…
45. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III: The Manhattan Project (NES)
I give this the edge over Turtles in Time if only because it was actually challenging.
44. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2 (Nintendo 64)
Like every other boy who owned a N64, I played this game a ridiculous amount of months. That soundtrack is probably forever woven into our brains.
43. Donkey Kong Country Returns (Nintendo Wii)
As I said before, I never owned a Super Nintendo, so I never had a strong attachment to the original Donkey Kong Country. But I did however have a blast playing the new side scrolling version for Wii. I played the original a decent amount, and in my opinion, Returns was superior in every way, other than being a classic, which I hope it will be one day.
42. Soulcalibur (Sega Dreamcast)
A fighting game with an actual storyline, and a ton of mini-game like stages…? uhhh SCHYEAH. I was totally hooked on this game for a solid couple months.
41. General Chaos (Sega Genesis)
Countless hours spent torching my friends with flamethrowers and shooting them with bazookas. Scorchers and launchers for life! General Havok, YA DONE, SON!
40. Mario Kart 64 (Nintendo 64)
Double Dash sort of made me forget everything specific about this game, as Mario Kart 64 is inferior in comparison; but I know for a fact that many, many hours were spent playing this game.
39. Virtua Tennis (Sega Dreamcast)
It accomplished things Pong could only dream about.
38. Banjo-Kazooie (Nintendo 64)
Looking back, it was the most randomly created, awesome 3D platformer made from that era. They introduced a completely new character, made it into an extremely fun game, and took up a good chunk of my summer of 1998.
37. NBA Jam (Super Nintendo)
I haven’t yet tried the updated version now available on PS3, but I imagine it’s not as great as the SNES version. BOOM-SHAKA-LAKA.
36. Super Mario Sunshine (Nintendo GameCube)
The wackiest concept ever for a Mario game (cleaning up sludge with a water pack?) actually turned out to be an incredibly awesome Mario game.
35. Phantasy Star Online (Sega Dreamcast)
The gameplay was just alright, it was actually kind of redundant (but fun for a few solid weeks at first). But it was really fun taking this game online. My friend Saad and I were basically super trolls, and well-known thieves. We would go around literally doing a two-man con artist job where we would pretend to be people who didn’t know each other, and he would trade me a generic Mag in front of a group of people, but he would say it was the mythical Sonic Mag. Then I would start freaking out with joy and everyone would be like “Me next! Me next!” And they would trade him all their best equipment, and he would drop them like shitty Mags from the beginning of the game, and they would cry, and we would laugh in their faces until they left the room. Then Saad would give me half of the loot. We were such glorious assholes. And it was awesome. Eventually it got to the point where we would go around and talk to people saying that we had a bunch of Sonic Mags, and everybody recognized us by name as con artists and told us to fuck off. We were a pair of famous bandits. It’s still one of my favorite accomplishments in video game playing to date. But the gameplay was just alright. If my memory serves me correctly, I was a bright red robot named Biz Markie.
34. Pilotwings 64 (Nintendo 64)
Did anyone else fly as high as they could with the wings, then super speed free fall until you crashed into the island? OH YEAH, NEITHER DID I.
33. Warcraft 2: Tides of Darkness (PC)
My family was super slow about getting the internet when I was a teenager. So I pretty much just played this game by myself, going through campaign mode multiple times, and setting up custom games like it’s no one’s business. I had immense amounts of fun playing this game solo for years. The first time I took it online, I got rocked almost instantly, and never tried it again. Good story.
32. World Class Track Meet (NES)
The best game to utilize the Powerpad. You basically just run on the one and two buttons back and forth while looking like a spaz, hoping that you can beat that bastard Cheetah. Of course, we got lazy and just got on our knees and hit the buttons with our hands after a while but it was always satisfying to school Cheetah legit with my legs. Triple jump and hurdles were also fun. Man, i wish I could have watched myself play this game, I guarantee I looked like I had mental problems.
31. Mortal Kombat Trilogy (Nintendo 64)
Best fighting game of all time! Burn in hell Marvel vs. Capcom! You don’t have Animalities!
30. Pokemon Red/Blue (Game Boy)
I bought the Red version, and my friend Eric bought the Blue version, and we both collected each Pokemon on our cartridges and traded each other the ones exclusive to the other versions so we could have the entire collections. We were huge fucking nerds. By the way, we played this game (this is the first one) before it exploded as the Pokemon as it is now known. Pokemon Red/Blue is a really solid video game. NO ONE DENIES THIS!
29. Jet Grind Radio (Sega Dreamcast)
Awesomely unique game at the time, about cell shaded punks who graffiti up Japan. It looked awesome, had an awesome soundtrack, and most of all was awesomely fun to play. God damn, I want to play this game again… I miss Dreamcast…
28. Final Fantasy VII (Playstation)
This is poison to the ears of our very own Dino Boner admin, Keith. But I got to the game later in life, and wasn’t as emotionally attached to it as a lot of people were who played it in their youthful days. That being said, I still thought it was an amazing game. The first chunk of the game in Midgar is one of my favorite RPG chunks of all time. SPOILER ALERT: Bruce Willis was a ghost the whole time.
27. Crazy Taxi (Sega Dreamcast)
Fast paced arcade style gameplay, with a ton of mini challenges that were actually really challenging. I recently just downloaded the full game on the Playstation store. Excited to go through it all again!
26. Madden (various systems)
I’m definitely one of those assholes who plays Madden every year. Going all the way back to playing Madden 93 on my friend’s SNES. For all the good times Madden has provided me over the years, there are equal amounts of painfully shitty times. The cheapness, the unexplainable bullshit, the lack of features… It seems like if I could just pick and choose elements from a whole bunch of Madden’s I could create the perfect football game. But EA Sports is the worst company in all of video games, and they take away and replace features like it’s the only thing that keeps them alive. They even managed to ruin franchise mode in the latest version, which is my go to time waster in my life (simming seasons) when I get sick of actually playing the football games. Now Madden 2012 is basically a coaster for my beer. But I metaphorically masturbated to Madden 64 when I was a kid, and I have too many great memories from playing a lot of other versions throughout my life to give the entire series the shaft. But seriously, it kind of sucks now. Yet, me playing as them in a video game is still the closest the Miami Dolphins will get to winning the Superbowl. (cries into hands)
25. Earthworm Jim 2 (Sega Genesis)
Might be the most insane video game of all time. You play a level as a blind salamander. In another level you have a balloon for a head. All of the levels had different gameplay styles. None of it made any sense. What a great game.
24. Bully (Playstation 2)
Surprisingly deep game. Well, I guess it’s not that surprising; Rockstar knows their shit. Aside from the missions that were really fun, you could actually go to class, kiss girls, wander the school, do a whole bunch of side missions. Even though I would normally hate people like the protagonist Jimmy, I rooted for him because I hated those preppy jerks even more! It almost had an 80s college movie vibe to it. (puts down drink; points) NEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRD!
23. Lords of the Realm (PC)
Awesome medieval strategy game I used to play all the time when I was a kid. The graphics were dogshit, but it didn’t matter. You start off as lord of your realm, and there are several other lords too. You are supposed to maintain a well balanced society, maybe even strike peace among the land. But more often than not, I would make all of my peasants harvest metals so I could make weapons, take over all surrounding counties, and generate a super army of hate and destruction that would sweep across the land. mwahahahahaha! Another fun note was that you could send compliments or taunts to the other computer lords, but it let you type them in. So, being like 10 years old when I played this, I would often write classy things like “I have pooped in the mouths of your wife and all of your daughters. Then created a scale model of your castle out of poop, too.” And he would reply with something like “You nave! How dare you speak ill will of the House of the Baron! We shall now go to war!” Soooooooooo many wars started over poop-related insults…
22. Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Sega Genesis)
Still, to this day, a go-to game if I want to kill an hour or so while waiting for something.
21. Super Mario Galaxy (Nintendo Wii)
They did everything right to utilize the Wiimote in a Mario game. And it was glorious. It’s hard to overlook all the crap that Wii has put out over the years, but crowning achievements like this help me forget some of it. It’s like a little look at what the Wii could have been. Which I guess is depressing that it never lived up to this kind of potential for 90% of its other releases. I have Galaxy 2 in my possession but haven’t started it yet. I assume it’s just as awesome.
20. Grandia II (Sega Dreamcast)
Dark themes, great story, and possibly the best turn-based RPG fighting system ever created. I miss this game.
19. Sam & Max Hit the Road (PC)
One of the funniest games I’ve ever played. It’s incredible how much story this game covers once you finish playing it. I desperately want to play this game again. I wonder if the CD-ROM is still at my parents house…?
18. Kirby’s Dream Land (Game Boy)
This game got me through just about every road trip my family took when I was a little kid. I’ve probably beaten it 50 times. Literally.
17. Wave Race 64 (Nintendo 64)
I absolutely loved this game. I beat it on all of the difficulty levels, knew all the shortcuts, hell, I think I may have even gotten 100% completion if that exists. I was a wave MASTER. I also had a funny little moment involving this game and my dad a long time ago. My family has had a summer cottage by a lake in Michigan for around 60 years that they rent. I spent every summer of my childhood in that non-air conditioned, cable-less cottage. Instead of going outside, I would often bring up video games and play them during the day, and only come outside at night. Anyway, when I was around 12-years-old, it was like noon on the most glorious sunny day in Michigan. My dad came in the cottage to see me in full recline mode in a chair, open mouthed playing Wave Race 64, and he looked at the TV, and had to like double take what was happening here. He almost got legitimately angry at me and frustratingly yelled “Are you serious? Are you aware that you have access to an ACTUAL waverunner if you just go outside and walk 100 feet…?”. My response: eeeeeeeeeeeeEEEEEEEEEHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. Kind of a symbolic story for my entire life.
16. WWF Wrestlemania 2000 (Nintendo 64)
Like many dudes my age, I watched wrestling during the “WWF Attitude” era of the late 90s. And this game was basically the greatest thing ever. Well, I’m actually not sure if I technically put more hours into this or WCW vs NWO World Tour, but Wrestlemania 2000 was definitely superior to that in just about every way. I guess I’m always slightly embarrassed to say I was a wrestling fan, but if there’s one aspect of that time period of my life that I will always defend, it’s that the N64 wrestling games were intense amounts of fun. Especially the multiplayer.
15. Super Mario Bros. 3 (NES)
Always a good go-to game. Any time. Any place. Almost always use warp whistles.
14. Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem (Nintendo GameCube)
Unique spin on a standard action game, where you play as 12 different characters spanning many different time periods, all with a tied together story. The most unique part is the fact that you have a “sanity meter”. As this meter goes down, awful things start happening during gameplay. Ranging from the walls bleeding, to sound effects getting really loud, to imaginary bad guys that disappear when they attack you, to the game giving fake GameCube error messages saying your system is malfunctioning and you’re about to lose your save data… I thought it was a pretty good game even without that stuff. But with the insanity effects, well, it just made it fucking crazy. In a good way. Very odd title that was released exclusively on GameCube for some reason. Probably overlooked by most.
13. Final Fantasy X (Playstation 2)
I know, I know… This is probably super lame that this game is so high on the list… For whatever reason I just really got into it. Maybe it was the first Playstation 2 game I ever owned, and I was wowed by the scope of the system. I don’t know. Actually, I thought the story in this game is probably the best of any of the Final Fantasy games I’ve played. Titus is kind of a doucher, but the story/visuals/gameplay/leveling system were compelling enough to look past the fact he was lame. Regardless, I have almost nothing but fond memories of my time playing through this game. GUILTY PLEASURE.
12. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (Nintendo 64)
Amazing landmark game that I (and countless others) loved. Why is it only #12? Probably because I’m really fond of the 11 games ahead of it.
11. Oregon Trail 2 (PC)
Ahead of Ocarina? Yup. I played this game ENDLESSLY when I was a kid. I was obsessed with it. I didn’t take it as a learning experience, it was a crucial voyage of survival. I always left the first camp spending my money on a few blankets and then the rest on bullets (medicine is for pussies). Then I’d go on an animal hunting voyage of survival trying to get to California before my entire party died of scurvy or got bit by rattle snakes. No, Bessie Sue, I won’t suck the poison out of your leg, you should have thought about that before you decided to take a stroll through that long grass… I ran a hardcore wagon party.
10. GoldenEye 007 (Nintendo 64)
The only first person shooter game I ever loved. I’m sure everyone has great stories of playing with their group of friends, so I won’t bore you with mine; as they are probably the same amazing experiences everyone has had. But on a personal note, I loved throwing remote mines all over a room and just waiting there doing nothing until someone tried to kill me, then blowing up the entire god damn room.
9. Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (Playstation 2)
I was late to the Playstation 2 party, and only played GTA 3 and GTA Vice City at friend’s houses, never really going through missions, but just causing crime and running from the cops. When I finally did get a PS2, I immediately got my hands on San Andreas and was completely lost in that game for a good chunk of my junior year of college. The story was pretty riveting (much more so than the disappointing GTA 4), and aside from that it was still fun to put in a weapon code, blow some shit up and fight off the cops with a five star wanted meter.
8. Heavy Rain (Playstation 3)
Awesome game where you basically watch a film cinema scene during the best parts, and hit buttons as they come on the screen relation to an action you must perform. This results in many sweaty, edge of your seat moments of panic as a crazy doctor is trying to cut you with a bone saw or holding down buttons in insane combinations to navigate through electric wiring. I’ve never been in a more consistent state of manic fear than when going through the action scenes of this game. Aside from the action, Heavy Rain presented a dark, amazing storyline about a serial killer, with very complex, human characters. If one of the several playable characters in the game ends up getting killed because of your poor reflexes, you don’t get a game over screen. The story will continue without them, resulting in one of many different endings. It was a video game experience like no other. I need a sequel please!
7. Star Fox 64 (Nintendo 64)
Fantastic single player mode filled with secrets and many different paths to chose. Like any respectable player who owned this game, I explored every possible path one could take. Such a deep gameplay experience. Couple that with an awesome multiplayer mode, and you got yourself a classic.
6. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess (Nintendo Wii)
For the first time since Ocarina of Time, a Zelda game actually went back to giving me flutters of delight and wonder. I was excited every time I turned on my Wii back in 2006, because this version of Hyrule was done to near perfection. As gimmicky as the Wii is/was, Twilight Princess had the most fluid experience ever utilized with the Wiimote. Even the possibly shitty concept of turning into a wolf version of Link was nailed, and didn’t seem shitty at all in execution. It also touts the best visuals ever for a Zelda game, and in my opinion the best and most impactful story. I couldn’t be more excited to blow the dust off my Wii in less than two weeks and dominate Skyward Sword when it comes out.
5. Rock Band (Playstation3)
Here are a few reasons why people don’t like Rock Band:
1. They’ve never actually played it. It just seems stupid to them.
2. They played it with some other people, weren’t very good at it immediately, felt a little embarrassed, and as a defense mechanism called it stupid.
3. They are uptight and/or hate having fun with other people.
4. They play real instruments and don’t understand the concept of untalented people playing fake instruments for fun. Well, sooooooorrrrrrry Mr. Talented.
I will never learn to play a real instrument. Let me have my time with these fake instruments. Is it that wrong to get drunk with my friends and play a fun video game that corresponds to listening to music we like? Because we’ve done that countless times and had some amazing times. It’s like having a complex karaoke machine in your living room, with better songs. And from someone who’s never touched a drumstick in his life before this game, learning to master the drum peripheral going from “Holy shit this song is super god damn challenging on Medium difficulty” to being able to get through Expert difficulty songs through sheer determination… well, that was pretty fucking cool to me.
4. Super Mario 64 (Nintendo 64)
The official “holy shit” game of almost every video game player my age.
3. Mario Kart: Double Dash
We have had some intense multiplayer nights with this game. Dodging blue shells, punching walls, getting blackout drunk, and most memorably having a multi-hour 75-75-75 Tilt-a-Kart battle between myself, Keith (dinosaurboner) and Lai (lainosaur), that resulted in that bastard Keith claiming the ultimate bragging rights with the 76th win. Best multiplayer game of all time. In the words of Birdo: Bwwwwwooooooowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww.
2. Shining Force 2 (Sega Genesis)
No, I haven’t played Final Fantasy Tactics. Quit asking me. It’s probably not as good as this.
1. Skies of Arcadia (Sega Dreamcast)
Such a sense of exploration. It was such an open world game with amazing characters and the best story I’ve ever experienced in a video game. It even had a nice take on the turn based gameplay that was slightly more improved than the norm. Featured a whole bunch of cool gameplay features. It had excitement (airship battles, shit, customizable airships!) and emotion (Drachma and the arcwhale [tear down face]). Some have criticized it for its upbeat nature. But I don’t know I thought it got pretty dark and complex at times, at one point an entire continent of innocent people gets destroyed. It’s an RPG of incredible scope, with a story that presents complex ideas and characters you actually cared about. Character’s that actually had a voice and mattered in the storyline. It was a game that I almost felt like playing again the minute I was done playing it. I think I might pick up the GameCube re-release version again and play through it all the way once more. God, I love this game. It’s very long, but I was never bored with it, as there’s so much to do. I would recommend it to anybody who likes RPGs in a heartbeat.