The Top 100 Greatest Video Games of All Time (IMO)

Nuu

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I started making this list almost a year ago. It not only lists all of my top 100 video games but it also gives detailed explanations and summaries about the titles. I'm curious to see what GAF thinks about it, so I'm posting it here. I realize that this seems rather "bloggy" but I see people doing write-up series on games all the time, so this is kind of like either one huge write-up series or a bunch of small ones. The summary of the entries start out moderate, but become much more detailed past a quarter way through.


100| Red Earth

Released: November 21st, 1996

Available on: Arcade



In the mid-nineties traditional 2D gaming was quickly being replaced by polygons. The amount of immersion and possibilities 3D gave players at the time made 2D seem very antiquated. This was especially true in the arcades as near limitless high-end hardware resulted in games looking, at the time, photorealistic with graphics that wouldn’t be matched on consoles until a full generation later. However, there was one developer who stayed committed to 2D, and that was Capcom. While competitors Namco and Sega strived to push with 3D, Capcom decided to continue to push 2D as much as possible. In 1996 they released the CPS3 board which was the last piece of hardware of its kind, one that solely focused on pushing 2D graphics and capabilities to their limit. The board is best known for Street Fighter III. However, the unit launched with a different game.

Red Earth can best be described as a single player focused fighting game. While it does have a two player versus mode, the meat of the game is in the single player mode which involves fighting eight unique boss battles. This ranges from creatures similar to a griffin, octopus, and tyrannosaurs rex. Now while the game may not be too much to write home about, it (barely) makes this list primarily due to two reasons. The first is that the game’s unique single player focus is appealing. If you ever found yourself bored one night and want to play a fighting game but have no one to play with Red Earth is pretty much made for you. The bosses are diverse and difficult as they require the player to plan out strategies to overcome them. The second reason, as shallow as it sounds, are the graphics. I mean holy hell just look at these:



How could you see these sprites and not want to play the game? Capcom took a hell of a gamble with Red Earth. It was arguably the last 2D game that really pushed gaming hardware to its limit. It was unfortunate that the gamble didn’t pay off.


99| NeoTokyo

Released: July 3rd, 2009

Available on: PC




Counter-Strike is one of the most popular online first person shooters of all-time. It is a game played by millions from nations all around the world. Therefore, it comes with much surprise of just how few first person shooters there are that emulate its formula. One such game is NeoTokyo. A Half-Life 2 mod that marries CounterStrike's tactical gameplay with the aesthtic of late '90s cyberpunk anime, the end result is more or less as good as it sounds. Now while it is true the gameplay takes heavy influence from CounterStrike, the game is easily different enough to be its own thing. Sure it revolves around two small groups of opposing teams starting at the other end of each map as opponents pick rival teammates one by one until a team runs out of players, but the similarities end there. The game adds many concepts that make it stand out from its juggernaut idol such as the option to choose different classes, offering players special abilities like invisibility, and matches based more on a capture the flag type concept.

The game certainly isn't without its flaws though. The movement and feel of the game is a little dated compared to modern FPSs, especially when controlling your gun. Some of the maps are far too large for their own good, resulting in some awkward sessions where the last two opponents on a map spend a full two minutes trying to find each other. Worst of all the game's heyday is long past as the community is hardly active with it being difficult to find a single person playing online. However, the gameplay is still solid, the soundtrack is fantastic, the atmopshere is immersive, and if you log in on the right time of day you will find an active game session. All of this lends to a game that is a reasonable alternative to CounterStrike. And best of all? It is completely free.


98| Rodea the Sky Soldier

Released: November 10th, 2015

Avaliable on: Wii



There was a lot of skepticism at the time the Wii ruled the marketplace. On one side you had those who embraced the console's control scheme and were excited about all of the potential possibilities it had to offer in seemingly stagnant console marketplace. On the other side you had those who saw the control scheme as nothing but a gimmick and were very uncomfrotable by the huge influx of casual gamers into the market solely thanks to the little console that could. Unforunately/fortunately (depending on the side you were on) the Wii and its control scheme began to fade away from market favorability at the turn of the decade. By 2011 the "revolution" was clearly over, and by 2012 it was dead. However, one thing any reasonable person can agree on was that due to the system's "blue ocean strategy" and the unique control scheme, it had a variety of unique games that took advantage of these factors. There is one game in particular that sparks some interest.

Rodea the Sky Soldier was a game lost in time. It was stuck in development hell and didn't release until three full years after the successor to the Wii was launched. Playing the game in 2015 was a trip, it was a game solely designed around the Wii's unique control scheme and let off that classic "Wii" feel. It was as if the game was taken out of a time machine. The title takes advantage of the motion controls and pointer to create a modern version of a Sega Genesis action-platformer that could best be described as 3D entry of Rocket Knight Adventures. Players will find themselves using the intuitive controls to effortlessly fly through the skies and scale buildings. All the while racking up collectables and fighting baddies. It is a stereotype that the Wii's motion controls were inaccurate, and regrettably at times it was true. However, Rodea is the exception to the rule. The player has a lot of control over Rodea as they flick their wrist to guide the direction and arc the character flies in. The pointer controls are very accurate as well as Rodea goes exactly where the player tells him where to go. Another major reason for controls being so good is due to the fact that the game is designed around them. Levels are very open and sprase so the player knows exactly where they are aiming to take Rodea to. The game also is very forgiving just where Rodea is allowed to fly toward, as well as has his fall speed is incredibly slow so there is little penalty in trying to find where Rodea is close enough to fly to next.

The game is cultivation of everything the Wii should have been to gamers to begin with. The developers should have never focused on shoehorning motion controls in games that weren't designed for them, but rather should have re-imagined the games we know and love around motion controls. Rodea is the perfect example of this. It takes relatively known and stale genre and breathes life back into it. The game looks and plays just like the old arcadey action platformers of the '90s while still feeling fresh and new. This is what the Wii should have been all about to hardcore gamers. Unfortunately it arguably took until the system was long dead and buried before such a game was released.


97| Hotline Miami

Released: October 23rd, 2012

Definitive Version: PC (All major OSes); Also on: PS3, PS4, PSVita, Android.



The previous generation saw the rise of independent developers. This was the largely the result of two factors. The first was the growing popularity of a digital distribution through platforms such as Steam. The second is that due to the enormous cost and difficulty of developing games for modern consoles, it pushed many developers to leave the traditional console market go their own way. Fuel met fire when these two factors met which led to a massive explosion of independent titles. One of the most notable titles of this era was Hotline Miami. Developed by a single person on a game engine that was widely seen as a joke at that time, Hotline Miami brought the beat-em-up genre back as it hypnotized its players through addictive gameplay, non-apologtic violence, trendy style, and party music.

Playing through the game is like an acid trip of a hyperviolent 1980's Miami dominated by violence, drugs, crime, club music, animal masks. The player barges through doors as they use their hands, firearm, or any object lying in the ground to turn their enemies into pools of blood. The player has the choice in the begining of each level to select an animal mask to which each one grants the player a unique ability such as superspeed or stronger firearm damage. The game is hardly forgiving as the player will find themselves dying A LOT. However, this is the appeal of the game. To deduct what went wrong and what strategy could lead to elminating all of the enemies as clean as possible. It is actually what makes the game so addictive. Just how perfect can an area be cleared.

Going from dying at the first open of the door to achieving this



is highly rewarding.

That said the game isn't without faults. While the game is guaranteed to have you play through it a second time around, it isn't something you are likely to keep going back to after that. The story and "lore" are also a little too nonsensical to truly appreciate. Yet these faults don't override Hotline Miami's strengths. It's a game that is fun, additicitve, hypnotic, and definitely worth your time.


96| Undertale

Released: September 15th, 2015

Avaliable on: PC (Windows & OSX)




Word of mouth is a powerful thing. Big name companies can spend tens of millions in advertising, yet their products can still flop. On the other hand you can have a product that is released with virtually no advertising and can become a smash hit. The latter is what perfectly describes Undertale. Created by one person with absolutely no marketing budget, the game had a quiet release. Seven months later it is pushing a million and a half copies sold. What made such an obscure title a powerhouse seller? The answer lies in the game's charm. Heavily inspired by the Mother series, developer tobyfox created a whimsical world of bizzare and likable characters, serene environments, and a relaxing atmosphere. Undertale is a great game to just pick up and enjoy your time with.

This isn't to say that the game solely rests its laurels on with the character merely taking in their surroundings. The actual gameplay has some unique aspects of it as well. Rather than focusing on battles consisting of navigating a menu of attacks, skills and spells (though you can play the game like that if you want to) Undertale takes a radically different approach. The player controls a heart icon confined in a box as they try to avoid enemy attacks. When the enemy's attack is finished the player will attempt to talk the enemy down so they will quit fighting them. Other times, usually during boss battles, the player can manipulate the enemies tricks against them in an attempt to hurt them. The process looks like so:



It's a very fresh and innovative concept in the RPG genre, and it deserves to be expanded upon. To add to this the game also contains top notch writing and a glourious soundtrack that you will be listening to for months after playing the game. The game also has multiple endings making it perfect for multiple playthroughs. This is specifically true for the "Pacifist Ending" which adds a significant amount of content to the game which is arguably the best part of it. Underale isn't "The Greatest Game of All-Time", but it is a very fun ride.


95| The Last of Us

Released: June 14th, 2013

Definitive Version: PS4; Also on: PS3





No, The Last of Us isn't "the greatest video game of all-time". Far from it. However, it would be asinine to suggest that the game isn't high quality. Continuing Sony's philosophy of merging games and film, The Last of Us set new bars for games focused on a cinematic experience. The game is so cinematic infact that people often refer to the game as a "cinematic action game" due to how cinematic the game's highly cinematic cinematic moments are... The game plays like a typical linear stealth-action game. The objective often boils down to getting from point A to point B while sneaking past and taking out enemies. The enemies can be divided into two types. Smart enemies, typically humans, and dumb enemies, which are typically the undead. The player will spend much of their time navigating through various buildings and underground passage ways as they avoid being seen by enemies and strike them at just the right moment.

However, where the game really excels at is its pacing and narrative. These two things mix so well with one another that often you feel less like you are playing a game and more that you are playing a movie. This is acheived by just when and how the cutscenes are implemented, as well as the game's top notch writing giving life and depth to the characters. This has the game really always holds the player's interest, at least when it comes to wondering what will happen to the protagonists next.

So why does this game take such low priority on the list? Much like other cinematic focused games, most notably the Bioshock franchise, the game's cinematics are taken priority to the point that the actual gameplay feels secondary. Now this doesn't necessarily have to be a bad thing, but the problem with The Last of Us is that the gameplay just isn't particularly good. For starters it is highly generic. How many games use the stealth based combat approach in which the player hides by crouching a distance away from the enemy, and then when the enemy isn't looking, slowly crouch walk toward them in order to stab or snap their neck? To add to that, the actual stealth based gameplay is fairly shallow. It relies on the bare basics of crouch walking, the ability to throw objects to distract your enemies, and sneak attacks. Now this wouldn't be as big of a problem if it wasn't for my second complaint of the game. It is pretty repetitive. These stealth sections feel that they make up at least 50% of the game. The majority of the other 50% are the shooting segments which feel just as shallow.

That said, The Last of Us is not a bad game. It's a great one in fact. The game is highly engaging and will make anyone who plays it be very connected to the characters and the world around them. Unfortunately due to the lacking depth in gameplay I didn't appreciate this one as much as others.


94| Dance Dance Revolution Extreme

Released: December 25th, 2002

Definitive Version: Arcade; Also on: PS2




Dance Dance Revolution was truly the last hurrah for the arcades. Not only was it the last major series to be a big hit in the arcades, but it also started the last arcade scene. What I mean by this is that it was the last time people would gather in the arcades to play the game, make friends, and hold little tournaments rather than doing so at home. This is primarily due to the fact that to truly experience the game one must have the arcade quality step controller. They were very sturdy, could take a beating, and weren't cheap. In an age where paying an extra $100 for a music game due to a peripheral wouldn't be in style for another few years, it gave Dance Dance Revolution the perfect reason to find its home on the arcade floor rather than the living room. I actually witnessed it first hand due to my first job being in the arcades. It was the first, and likely the last, time I would ever experience a "scene" at the arcades. While King of Fighters '98, Tekken 5, and Capcom vs SNK 2 laid barren, Dance Dance Revolution Extreme almost always got play. It was very common for a group of people to meet up and just chill playing the game for a few hours at a time. They would often compete with one another, cheer each other on, and help newcomers. It was the type of environment that you just couldn't find anywhere else in games at the time.

So what makes this game stand out so much? Well no other reason than that it is just simply fun to play. The game revolves around the player "dancing" to music as arrows scroll up on the screen and the player has to step on the correct area of the floor mat in the correct order when the arrow lines up to its designated place on screen perfectly. It may seem simple at first but the game has a gradual learning curve that ranges from the screen scrolling so slow that your six year old could do it, to what seems like hundreds of arrows scrolling by per minute. Highest play levels look something like this



This skill curve as well as other people witnessing it is large reason to what makes the game so popular. Individually the player wants to get a better and better as they want to be able to competently complete their preferred songs, socially you always want to be on the same level as your friend that got you into the game who is an expert player. I feel that this is what made arcades so successful to begin with. They offered games that anyone could pick up and have fun with, however were very difficult and appealing to master. Not to mention that the games were just as much of a social activity as a recreational one. Dance Dance Revolution was the last major series to find its home at malls and movie theaters rather than the living room and bed room. Sure it may not tickle the fancy of more tradtional gamers who are more attuned with beat-em-ups and fighting games, but it is damn fun to play.


93| Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV: Turtles in Time

Released: September 18th, 1991

Definitive Version: SNES; Also on: Arcade




Licensed video games have come a very long way. Today we plently of prominent examples of licensed games getting it right when it comes to handling their properties. The Batman Arkham games look and feel like Batman both in gameplay, atmosphere, and design. The same goes with other games such as South Park: The Stick of Truth and The Walking Dead. However, it wasn't too long ago that licensed games were almost universally terribly. Luckily back in the '90s Konami managed to often break the mold with some of the hottest licenses possible. The most standout of these licenses was the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. From the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Arcade game to Tournament Fighters, Konami released many quality turtle titles. However, their magnum opus was definitely Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV: Turtles in Time. Often hailed as the best beat-em-up ever, the game, like any beat-em-up, has players walking to the right end of the screen beating up baddies as they punch, strike, and smash them into oblivion.

So what makes this game stand out so much compared to the other countless amount of beat-em-ups avaliable during the time period? The fact that it nailed the world of turtles to a tee. From the game looking like the cartoon, to the SFX chip putting in work to sound like the show, to the mauling down enemies in the same way the turtles do every Saturday morning, the game was arguably the first example of feeling like you are truly playing the license the game is based off of. However, the game didn't rest solely on its license, as the actual gameplay and design matched the effort of the presentation.The game played very smooth and felt great as you run around the screen bashing in enemies with the weapon of your choice. Possibly an even bigger feat was the Super Nintendo port. Not only did it have an alternative level that used its Mode 7 capabilities, but it also managed to look graphically close to the arcade version while having zero slowdown. This proves that the Super Nintendo was capable of providing arcade-like experiences, just if it was in the hands of the right developer.

Now to be fair, while this game was the shit twenty five years ago, today it shows a bit of its age. For starters while it is still fun tearing up the foot clan, the combat in the game is no Bayonetta. The game also doesn't save your progress or even have a password system (at least in non-Japanese versions) which can make completing the game a pain. Nevertheless it is still a very entertaining game to play today, and if you want to be hit with waves of '80s Ninja Turtles nostalgia you can't go wrong with this still deifnitive gaming experience of it.
 
Dec 2, 2010
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#8
I made a top 50 a few years back with similar write-ups. I eventually expanded it to a top 100 although I never had time to detail the additional 50. I get the feeling our lists will have almost nothing in common based on your choices but some of them do indicate a shared sensibility or two. I'm interested in how the rest of the list shakes out.
 

Nuu

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Nov 21, 2015
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#10
92| Yu Yu Hakusho Makyou Toitsusen

Released: September 30th, 1994 (JPN)

Available on: Sega Megadrive



We are very lucky to currently be in a time where quality games not getting localized is practically unheard of. Even games such as Project X Zone and Tokyo Mirage Sessions which would never have been localized say ten years ago are receive releases. To add to that publishers such as XSeed, Aksys, and Playism do their best to make sure no quality game doesn't get localized. Of course there are still games missed here and there, including ones that hurt such as Phantasy Star Online 2 and The Great Ace Attorney. But in today's gaming market if there is a quality game from another country, especially Japan, chances are it's coming to the West.

Unfortunately this was not the reality in the gaming world during the '90s, much less during the 16-bit era. Back then it wasn't uncommon for quality games not to be brought over to the West. And if the game was based off of an unfamiliar licensed property and was too "foreign" for American or European tastes then you were out of luck to be able to play the game in English. Sure there were some studios like Working Designs willing to bring things over, but they were few and far in between.This resulted in many quality games tragically not being released in the West which significantly hampered a console's potential library.

A perfect example of this was Yu Yu Hakusho Makyou Toitsusen. Developedby Treasure the game plays sort of like the evolutionn of a traditional fighting game. First off rather than being 1 on 1 on fighter the game is a 4 player thow down. Like Super Smash Bros., multiple players go head to head with each other beating one another up until only one character is left standing. Unlike Super Smash Bros.though the game plays and feels just like a traditonal fighting game. The characters have combos, specific inputs for special moves, and even a super meter. The game's uniqueness doesn't end there. There are also two planes work with as the player can hop between the foreground and background to fight their opponents. All of this leads to a very interesting and innovative game that still stands out today.

As a huge fan of fighting games, I have to admit it is a bit of a double edge sword that the genre stays so conservative. On one hand the genre doesn't seem to be plagued by the bullshit found in other genres. Things such as lowering the skill ceiling for the sake accessibility or implementing pay to win mechanics so that frustrated players can find an easy route to victory as well as companies utilizing a new cash cow. That isn't to say that there aren't already fighting games that do these things, just that it isn't common to find games in the fighting genre that do these things as it is say in the competitive shooter genre. On the flip side, it does seem a bit depressing that so many fighting games are similar. Almost all of them are one vs one fighters, or at most liberal one vs one with assists, have a super meter, and rely on specific inputs for doing specials. The genre hasn't changed significantly since this game's release. It was clear that Treasure was trying to do something new and exciting to evolve the genre, but alas it didn't catch on. To be fair, Treasure did continue making spritual sequels to this game which did get a Western release with Bleach: Blade of Fate and Bleach: Dark Souls for the Nintendo DS. These games play almost exactly like Makyou Toitsusen as they have two planes players can hop back and forth between as well as being able to accomodate four players at once. But at the end of the day there is just something about the original that makes it stand out. Not sure what it is, but it is just so enjoyable booting the game up, even if it is just me playing by myself to knock out my computer opponent. The game is just feels so fun to play.



91| Life is Strange

Released: January 30th, 2015 (first episode) - October 20th, 2015 (final episode)

Definitive Version: PC (All major OSes); Also on: PS4, Xbox One, PS3, and Xbox 360




In many ways Life is Strange is sort of a counterpoint to the typical mainstream video game. There is a reason why Dudebro is a meme. Most mainstream games tend to put focus on the 18 to 35 year old male demographic which results in games being fueled with testosterone involving men with big biceps, scantily clad women, constant action going on screen, blood and gore, and a gritty art style. Now of course there are exceptions to this rule, but Life Strange manages to break every single bullet point. For starters rather than focusing on a thirty something year old man roaming around as he constantly kills enemies to save the world, it instead focuses on a young woman who attempts to reconnect with her home and friendship. Rather than being a first person shooter with enemies lined up on the screen to be used as blood bags, Life is Strange involves the character calmly walking around each area solving mini-puzzles as they interact with the environment around them. This may sound boring to this A.D.D. generation of gamers, but if one is patient and gives the game a chance it is a very enjoyable experience.

As explained before, the player controls a character who returns back to a previous hometown where she goes to a private art school for her photography. Much of her dilemma focuses on her previous best friend who has been getting into all sorts of trouble ever since the main character left. It also turns out that there is a dark mystery hidden in the town that needs to be unearthed, so the protagonist and her long lost companion team up to solve it. The game is often criticized as being a "walking simulator", but there is a bit more to it than that. In order to progress the player has to figure out various objectives, such as how to break open a lock or distract a bystander so you can sneak through an area. What's also interesting is that your choices actually have a significant effect on the game's story as something as simple as answering a phone call could significantly alter the game's plotline. The good thing about this is that if you immediately regret your choice, your character can go back in time to change that choice. Oh that's right, I forgot to mention that this game heavily involves the use of time travel.

I wouldn't really call Life is Strange a masterpiece as it is not without its flaws. The most glaring one is how stupidly off tone the game gets during the final chapter. Nevertheless this is a game that had me glued to my seat as I played it for hours on end for a few days until I completed it. The story is very compelling and addictive, and the minimalistic gameplay complements it very well. It’s a game that stands out in a market that while diverse, can feel very homogeneous at times.



90| Star Fox 64

Released: June 30th, 1997

Definitive Version: 3DS; Also on: N64, Wii & Wii U eShop




The original Star Fox was ground breaking. At the time, a console being able to put out polygonal graphics, let alone without one having to shell out a few hundreds of dollars for an attachment, was unheard of at the time. For a comparison, it would be like if someone released a full VR game for consoles that came packaged in with a VR helmet for the average price of a video game. Now most people are well aware just how Argonaut Games achieved this with the lowly Super Nintendo hardware. They used something called the Super FX chip, which was a chip they developed themselves that was inserted into the game cartridge to give the Super Nintendo an extra oomph of power. This undoubtedly gave Star Fox a significant amount of attention.

However, by the time Star Fox 64 rolled around, 3D was hardly a novelty. The console it released on was based solely around the concept of playing three dimensional games, so merely being polygonal was no longer enough for a game stand out. What's more is that 3D was being pushed further both design wise with games like Super Mario 64 and presentation wise with games such as Resident Evil. This meant that the formula left by Star Fox wasn't just no longer cutting edge, but also outdated. As usual however, Nintendo EAD worked their magic and created a game that stood apart from others both due to ground breaking innovations and tried and true gameplay. One immediate notable thing was that Star Fox 64 was the first game to ever use rumble. Sure today this seems standard, but at the time rumble was a unique feature that really helped the immersion of a game. Another thing to note is how well the game's presentation was done. The short but sweet debriefings and hearing your copilots interact with you and each other really added to the experience of the game. But what really made the game stand out was the gameplay. While it did add new features such as l ground vehicles and "free range mode" segments, by and large the main game remains unchanged. It stays true to the classic on-rail shooting gameplay that we all know and love. To sum it up this game is fun, accessible, and highly replayable.

It is a bit of a shame that since Star Fox 64, the series has never gone back to its roots. It keeps trying to be something it is not in order to "keep up with the times" as adventure elements and on foot segments keep creeping into each iteration. Here's hoping that one day the series will return to the design that made it so popular and beloved in the first place.



89| Portal 2

Released: April 19th, 2011

Definitive Version: PC (All major OSes); Also on: PS3 and Xbox 360






In 2007 Valve released The Orange Box. Widely considered the best deal in gaming history at the time, users were treated with a bundle of five titles (or three depending on how you look at it) that were high quality and mostly new. However, the game that really stood out in the package was a little game called Portal. As the the title suggests the game involves the use of portals. The player is equipped with a portal gun as they set out to do various puzzles and trials put forth to them as they jump into and then through walls, manipulate the environment, and break the laws of physics as we know them. The game was short as it only took a few hours to complete, but it was brilliantly paced and had tons of charm which results in it being criminal to not go through at least another playthrough. The game managed to gain a huge following due to the love of its innovative mechanics, humor, and general appeal. Due to the game's success Valve released a sequel in 2011.

Launching on nearly everything it could at the time, Portal 2 delivered the same strengths found in the first game and dialed them up to eleven. No longer was the game a short and sweet experience that the player completed in one sitting, it was now a full fledged game that required multiple sittings to beat. Despite the increase length Valve managed to have the game every bit as well paced and polish as the first. The game even introduces as many new concepts as the first game. The portal gun could now be used to create walkways, wall barriers, speed rails, and trampolines. This alone would have made the game live up to its predecessor, yet this doesn't even take into account of how the presentation got turned up the ante as well. The game now has a focused "story" as, in Valve fashion, the environment and background gives the player many clues to what it going on. The game contains many more lines of dialogue as well as far more musical pieces, which both complement the game perfectly. It is rare for me to actually legitimately laugh at a video game or get chills down my spine due to a soundtrack, but Portal 2 manages to do both. On top of all of this the game also has online multiplayer which involves two players cooperating with one another as they complete the puzzles and trials the game puts forth for them.

The game really only has two faults. The first is that it isn't quite as replayable as the first one. I don't know what it is, but I can't find myself wanting to play the game more than twice. The second is that the multiplayer just isn't as good as it should be. On paper it sounds great but playing online just makes me wish I could play some new maps in the main game as those felt like much more care was put into them compared to the online maps. Still these flaws are merely scuffs on a well crafted title.



88| Super Smash Bros. for Wii U

Released: November 21st, 2014

Definitive Version: Wii U; Also on:3DS (sort of)



I have a very...complicated relationship with Super Smash Bros. The thing is that, for the most part, I find the games pretty boring. I don't care playing the latest game on-line. There are at least a dozen other fighting games I would rather play. However, due to the fact that everyone and their mother asking me if they could play the game when my Wii U is around, that has led to a lot of great memories. Now I'll just say it right off the bat. Playing Super Smash Bros. local multiplayer is obviously where the fun is at. I actually legitimately enjoy playing the game in this mode as it can become very frantic with more than two players and there is a lot of satisfaction seeing your friends face after you have pummeled them. The key to the series success is its accessibility. There are no inputs, combos, or six buttons to memorize. The entire game is primarily played by an analog stick and one button, with a trigger as a block and occasionally one other button for strong attacks. What's more is that for the longest time there were up to four players in the game so due to the lack of focus on every player and the chaos going on in the screen everyone can get their lick in on an opponent compared to other fighting games where a new comer wouldn't even be able to get a hit in. And with this iteration of the series, there are now up to eight players.

To point out the elephant in the room, the series is mostly known for the ability of having all of the most popular Nintendo franchise character duke it out in a fighting arena. And due to the game's popularity many third party characters have been added in the latest releases including Sonic, Megaman, Pacman, Ryu, Cloud, and Solid Snake (RIP). Slowly the game is going from a Nintendo Battle Royal title to a Video Games in General Battle Royal title. This alone would make the game absurdly popular, but add in the fact that the game is so accessible and presented a unique take on fighting games and the series became a mega hit.

Now don't get me wrong, I enjoy the game very much. I love the fact that it is different than other fighting games. I really like being able to play with more than one player at a time. It is very cool being able to play a game as some of my favorite video game characters. Bashing my opponents sky high and out of the ring gives me a lot of satisfaction. The problems I have with this game are essentially what makes them so appealing to most in the first place. For starters is the accessibility. It is great and all that there are hardly any inputs to memorize. That said this seriously limits the amount of attack each characters have. On top of that there is very little execution in actually performing these moves. Games like Marvel vs Capcom 2 and Skullgirls are extremely fun to play to see just how much you can exploit the character's movement and moveset to do over the top combos and attacks. With Smash everything is done with a simple push of a button, so there isn't much to play around with. The other problem is the fact that everyone who plays can get a lick in on an opponent. Sure getting constantly overkilled in fighting games is not fun. However, that is what makes the genre so magical. You have to actually work to get good at the genre. There is a huge satisfaction training and practicing for dozens of hours until you go up against a player who would previously spank you but due to all of your hard work you actually managed to get out a win out of them. Smash is not like that at all and is in fact designed not to be like that. Hence why for competitive play the community has to alter the game significantly to even make it such as only playing on two stages or omega stages, only playing as a handful of characters, as well as turning items off. Super Smash Bros. for Wii U is a great game that I enjoy playing. It just frustrates me that I feel like a lot of my positive experiences came by being practically forced to play the game as nobody wants to take the time to learn how to play more traditional fighters.



87| Metro 2033

Released: March 16th, 2010

Definitive Version: PC (All major OSes); Also on: PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360




It is very common in the industry to make clones of highly influential and successful games. After the release of the highly successful World of Warcraft there were a huge slew of "WoW clones" trying to cash in on the game's popularity. Due to the success of Goldeneye there were plenty of split screen multiplayer shooters for years. However, there are some successful and influential games which don't get enough imitators. One of the most infamous examples is The Legend of Zelda series. Despite being a staple of the gaming industry for decades games using its formula come few and far in between (Beyond Oasis, Alundra, DarkSiders). Resident Evil 4 is another good example. Besides the Dead Space franchise and the budget title Cold Fear you'd be hard pressed to find a game that focuses on the game's formula. But one type formula that stands out to me is Half-Life 2's. The way the game mixes interactive story telling with first person shooter and puzzle based gameplay is ingenious. Unfortunately few developers have dared to try and copy its formula. Fortunately A4 Games took the risk in adapting the popular online novel Metro series into a game that uses Half-Life 2's formula. And the result is a game that, while not as good as Half-Life 2, is still great and easily manages to stand on its own.

Before I say anything, I cannot recommend playing this game on "Ranger Mode" enough. Seriously, I played the game for two hours and hated it as enemies took far too long to kill and things became really boring. But playing the game in "Ranger Mode" reduces the hit points for both the enemies and the player leading to more quick and risky enemy interactions. So, play the game in "Ranger Mode". Also make sure the voice acting language is changed to "Russian". It makes the game feel a lot more authentic and brings the world to life.

With that out of the way, now to describe the actual game. Metro 2033 is based of the popular Russian online books series about a dystopian future where humanity is forced to live underground in the subway system due to nuclear winter. What is even more unfortunate is that due to the radiation of the nuclear material, strange creatures called "The Dark Ones" have popped up that target humans. Thus a "war" between humans and The Dark Ones is underway. The only way humans can survive under such conditions is to live inside heavily guarded camps. The way the game presents this world is top notch. There are extremely few games that I have played that have such an engrossing atmosphere. Playing the games makes the player truly feel that they are living in a post apocalyptic Russian underground world. The environments are extremely well detailed as everything looks dirty and worn. The characters all look gloom and demonstrate that they are struggling to survive as they beg for food or partake in risky activities. And just like Half-Life 2, the game's standout scenes are presented in a first person view point as the character can interact with much of the cinematics. But where the game really shines is when there is nothing to see at all. Much of the game takes place where the player is outside the comforts of the camps and into the dangerous wilderness of the tunnels filled with dark ones, paramilitary groups, ghosts, and anything else imaginable. Like Metroid, the game does a wonderful job in making you feel that you are cut off from civilization. For hours you will be exploring dark tunnels, caverns, and ruins only often only greeted by the sound of ambiance. When something does pop up, it is usually unfriendly and a threat.

Truth be told a lot of the reason why the game succeeds is due to the fact of the feeling of vulnerability. While most first person shooters are obsessed with stocking the player with as much ammunition as humanely possible, Metro 2033 gives the player the bare minimum to be able to survive. Every shot counts and there is a lot of stress knowingly walking into an area filled with a group of enemies or a nest of monsters with less than half a dozen bullets to your name. Because of this Metro 2033 feels more like a first person survival horror game than a first person shooter. Truth be told the player will be sneaking more than shooting in order to conserve their resources.

While the game has many strengths, it has many weaknesses as well. For starters while the graphics are incredible, the animation is definitely not. Characters move stiff and at times lifeless. There are games on the original Playstation with better animation. Another problem is the difficulty. The game seems to use the save anywhere system it incorporates as a crutch as instead of properly tuning the difficulty, it relies on the player reloading their previous save multiple times until they are able to take out enemies without taking too much damage. Admittedly it works well enough sometimes, but other times it is nearly impossible to get passed a certain area and it just makes things frustrating. There is also a cool alternate ending for the game that has requirements that are so obtuse for the player to meet, that it makes one wonder why they even put it in the game. Nevertheless, the positives easily over-ride the negatives and Metro 2033 is one of the previous generations best single player experiences. If you are looking for a highly immersive single player experience then the choice of whether or not to pick this one up is a no brainer.
 

Nuu

Banned
Nov 21, 2015
1,346
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#15
86| Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master

Released: August 22nd, 1993

Definitive Version: Sega Mega Drive; Also on: PC, PS3, Xbox 360, Wii Virtual Console, PS2, 3DS eShop, PSP, iOS




During the 1980s and the early 1990s, Nintendo had a death grip on the video game market in North America. Competitors came and went as they continuingly got stomped by the Godzilla sized monster known as Nintendo. It wasn't until juggernaut arcade manufacturer Sega took them on with the Sega Genesis (known as Mega Drive everywhere else) that Nintendo's grip began to loosen. One of the main reasons why Sega was successful while noone else was revolved around the fact that the company perfectly predicted the market. The toddlers and tykes who began playing games with the NES due to a jumpy plumber with magical abilities were now tweens and teens, thus demanded something more edgy and mature. Sega recognized this and brillantly decided to release a more mature looking console that stood for realistic sports games and flashy action games rather than cutesy platformers. This worked so well to the point that the Sega Genesis actually old sold the successor of the NES, the Super Nintendo, in North America. This is something nobody would have predicted a few years earlier.

If one were to give a game as an example that would define this whole strategy, at least in terms of gearing up Sega's existing Japanese products to market toward Westerners, I would say Shinobi III would be the best example. Despite being Japanese up the ass with a Japanese style soundtrack, mechs, and even Godzilla, the game was very successful in the United States. This is because rather than being marketed like some '90s anime, it was marketed as a "cool violent ninja game". While the game technically fulfills those requirements as it is certainly cool, is violent enough to have blood (at times), and stars a ninja, it is much more than that. The game is arguably the greatest action sidescrolling game of its era. The reason for this is really nothing special as the game isn't particularly innovative or even unique for its time. It often holds this title due to its quality. For starters, the game feels great. Controlling the main character feels like actually controlling a ninja as they are equipped with shurikens, a long sword, and dive kicks. It may sounds simple, and it is, but it perfectly gets the job done. The beauty of this game is in its level design. From the enemy placements to the location of platforms, everything feels like it was meticulously placed to enhance your enjoyment. Add in multiple stages that add diversity such as a horse riding stage and a surf/hoverboard stage, and you have yourself a game that is paced well and is infinitely replayable. Shinobi III is pretty much the quietessential "Sega action game that you replay every week or so for the hell of it", and that's a title it deserves.

It's a little sad that the series went to the way side after this game's release. A Sega Saturn entry was made but had shitty digitized graphics and poor gameplay thus was panned. A Playstation 2 reboot of the series was released and actually managed to sell reasonably well and have a large following. Unforunately a direct sequel was released that didn't even have "Shinobi" in the title and bombed. The franchise was dormant for years until a 3DS entry was released which was met with slightly positive reviews. It's unfortuante that Sega hasn't been able to capitalize on the Shinobi franchise since the early '90s, but that is understandable as the series success was a product of its time. The Sega "cool" factor of the early '90s was a transition period for the gaming market rather than the end result.


85| Blade Symphony

Released: May 7th, 2014

Avaliable on: PC




It's always interesting to see a genre develop on two different platforms and see how they compare with one another. A prominent example of this is the role playing genre as console role playing games were quite different from the computer counterparts in both tone, design, and player interaction. This at times makes one wonder how other genres would have been different if they found their way on different platforms. For example, the fighting game genre was born and bred in the arcades. It focused on one on one, face to face interactions with players as they duke it out with one another on the tried and true arcade setup. So what would happen if you move the fighting game genre from the local arcade scene and into the interconnected global PC scene and traded in the arcade stick for a mouse and keyboard? The end result is Blade Symphony.

Having its roots from a Jed Knights II mod, Blade Symphony is a fighting game that pins players together with nothing but a sword and an endless supply of shuriken. Rather than character movement being controlled by rigged inputs and having attacks register during certain button presses, the game has fluid movement and an interesting implementation of performing different attacks. To elaborate, the left mouse button has the player perform a sword attack, while the right mouse button has the player block. To change the character's type of attacks, the player can press the "1", "2", or "3" keys for different stances. "1" has the player perform a weak attack, "2" has the player perform an average attack, and "3" results in a heavy attack. As one could guess the weaker the attack the less damage while the stronger attacks perform higher damage. There is also the fact that if one player uses a stronger attack than the other and both players blades meet, the player with the stronger attack will push the other player back leaving them open. However, weaker attacks have the advantage of being fast and thus more likely to hit their opponent on time compared to one using stronger attacks. There is much more to the game's combat system, but that is a quick rundown of it.

Now this unique system alone would make this game standout from other fighting games. However, there is something else that makes the game not only very unique, but also has it get in touch with its PC gaming roots. There are three game modes to play online. 1 vs. 1, 2 vs. 2, and Free for All. 1 vs. 1 is the typical one on one fighting game mode. 2 vs. 2 is team based fighting where two players on each side go up against each other. But where the game really shines is in Free for All mode. This mode revolves around up to dozens of players entering a lobby as they run around a map filled with potentially dozens of other players. Here they can talk, spectate and fight other players. There are around a handful maps not counting the usual user created ones that often scream "internet culture". It is very fun just running around the area watching other people fight, talking with others, and forming bonds and rivalries. It's also interesting as the community has managed to make certain rules and customs when in cyberspace. A quick example is that, like almost any online game, the game features a gesture system. It is considered disrespectful to some users if each player doesn't bow before the start of each match. Sure it's something small, but it really adds to the experience.

Unfortunately, while the game is certainly unique and innovative, Street Fighter this is not. For starters you can only pick between four characters to fight as. Sure each one of these four have completely different play styles, but that doesn't save the game from having such a limited roster. Even worse is that the game just isn't designed for high level play. The game is hardly balanced as some characters are significantly more at an advantage than others. On top of that, it is far too easy to win by spamming certain attacks. Thus this isn't the type of game you will find at EVO. Finally, as of this entry, the online for the game isn't that active. Games can be found but only in a lobby or two. It's clear that the game is likely on its last legs. Regardless, the concept of the game is as cool as it sounds, and that is more than enough to take the $10 plunge to try it out.



84| Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura

Released: August 21st, 2001

Avaliable on: PC




If Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura was person I wouldn't know whether I should punch them or have sex with them. On one hand it is a buggy, broken, nonsensical, terribly paced, unbalanced, terribly designed, and above all else frustrating game. On the other it contains arguably the most deepest and most complex role playing ever to grace the industry. "Fluid" and "open-ended" don't even begin to describe the amount of possibilities the game offers. Not only can the player choose to be good, bad, or neutral during main story plotlines, but they can managed to talk their way out of anything no matter how relevant or irrelevant the situation. In fact the entire game can be completed just by talking, the player doesn't even need to click on the attack button. Depending on the character's traits such as looks, intelligence, race, gender, and what not different options, quests, and playstyles will be open to the player. You can manage to get yourself out of a sticky situation by being a smooth talker, or by being a mentally handicapped being and having people feel sympathy for you and thus do your bidding. There also other options as well such as being able to pick pocket them, finish an alternative quest to earn their respect, or performing a good old fashion beat down on those giving you a hard time. The choices are numerous and the player has these opportunities at nearly every crossroad no matter how small.

Now that I got the good out of the way, I'll get on to the bad. Everything else about this game is bad. Everything. For starters the theme of the game is suppose to be something akin to the Industrial Revolution but with humans living alongside of orcs, elves, gnomes, mages and what have you. This is awesome for the most part as the music and character designs are great, the problem is with inconsistency. While there are many times in the game the player feels like they are walking through a Victorian City, other times the scenery looks just like any other Medieval themed RPG. It's as if the developers were making a traditionally Medieval themed game from the get-go and changed course half-way through and were too lazy to redo the backgrounds, characters, and other assets.

The combat is atrocious. The game offers the option to use real time or turn based combat. The real time combat does not function at all what so ever. When an enemy gets clothes enough the NPCs and enemies will all just flock around and perform all of their attacks randomly and the "battle" is over within seconds. There is also no strategy at all to this. After an enemy encounter you will either be left standing or die, simple as that. In turn based it's much more manageable, but is very basic and has little strategy to none at all. The balance is also broken. If you play as a warrior class you will find yourself consistently out matched. However, if you play as a mage you basically cannot lose to enemies as your attacks are laughably overpowered. It's as if you entered a cheat code for God mode.

The dungeon "design" is the worst I have played in any game. I put "design" in quotes because there is practically no design at all. Dungeons are seemingly endless corridors with practically endless amount of enemies. They are more of a patience test than anything and are horrendous if you don't play as a mage.The game is also a bit cryptic as well. I love games that don't hold your hand, but there were a few too many times that I had to use a walkthrough in order to figure things out. But the cherry on top of all of this is how buggy the game is. I came across at least two progression breaking bugs that I had to work around, and that is after I installed the fan patch that really cleaned up the game. All of these caused me many hours of great frustration.

So after those paragraphs of problems, why does this game make the list? Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura is essentially a video game version of the classic cliche of an underdog hero who underperforms in every aspect. However, it turns out that in a twist this is solely due to the fact that the hero has focused all of their training on one specific super-ability that when used is insurmountable. With Arcanum that super-ability is role playing, and that is where it excels above all.



83| Metro: Last Light

Released: May 14th, 2013

Definitive Version: PC (All major OSes); Also on: PS4, Xbox One, PS3, and Xbox 360




Metro: Last Light is a sequel that is superior to its predecessor in every way. While I admit that the game isn't superior to a significant degree, it is at least to a notable degree. The story is more interesting, the in-game cinematics have more care put into them, the animations are slightly better, and the game has more ambitious set pieces. What's more is that everything from the previous game has been expanded. The player sees more sides of the Metro as towns are much more lively, the different political factions are much more fleshed out, and the encompassing plot is explained in greater detail. It's the classic "more of what you love" sequel.

Truth be told, there isn't much to say about this entry that I haven't said with its predecessor. The game is essentially Half-Life 2 but with more of a survivor horror touch. Once again players will be traveling the Metro as they scavenger bullets, medical packs, and anything else they can find as they sneak past enemies as in order to get to the next destination. Much of the game has the player isolated from civilization which results in a very creepy and oppressive atmosphere. Often the player will be greeted with in-game cinematics which are very well done and do a fantastic job in immersing the player into Metro's tragic world, specifically during the rare parts of the game where the player is actually in habited town. The graphics are beautiful and could be argued to be the first game released with current generation graphical standards. Unlike the stereotype with most of these technically impressive European PC games, the art style complements these graphics wonderfully, as the game can look like a painting at times.

Unfortunately due to being a sequel that plays it so close to the chest, the game also has the same flaws as the previous title. The difficulty relying on the save anywhere system to fix its faults is still present. The character animations, while improved, are still terrible.There is a way to get a "true ending of the game that is much more satisfactory than the common ending, but it is very cryptic and near impossible to get.

All in all, Metro: Last Light is a great game. It isn't perfect, but it provides more than enough enjoyment for a satisfactory play through. If you enjoyed the first game be sure to pick up this marginally superior sequel.



82| The King of Fighters 2002

Released: October 10th, 2002

Definitive Version: Arcade; Also On: Neo Geo, PC, PSN for PS3, XBLA for Xbox 360, PS2, Xbox, DC




The King of Fighters series is arguably the gold standard in fighting games. Developed and published by legendary arcade manufacturer SNK, the series was, for the longest time, a yearly release of all of SNKs most infamous fighting game characters duking it out with one another. Part of the reason why this worked so well was because SNK released a lot of fighting games. So many in fact that I've been looking online for a comprehensive list and I still can't find one that lists all, or even most, of the fighting games they've published. To explain to the layman, SNK was to fighting games as Squaresoft was to RPGs. It was more or less all that they worked on besides a few outliers such as Metal Slug. SNK was THE fighting game company.

The series being designed by the man who created Street Fighter, the original Street Fighter, they are traditional 2D fighting games that rely on a four button layout that give the player a few moves choose from, but still manages to offer numerous options. While things vary entry to entry, on average players will have the ability to perform grabs, rolls, counters, special attacks, ex specials, desperation moves, super attacks, parries, cancels, hops, hyper hops, etc.It's really surprising just how much the developers managed to cram into a four button layout. This isn't surprising however, as just like King of Fighters incorporates characters from SNKs various fighting game series, it also incorporates various aspects of their fighting systems. The result is an extremely versatile and well rounded fighting system.

There is a reason why this write-up seems to be less about The King of Fighters 2002 and more about The King of Fighters in general. The reality is that it is difficult to pick just which games in the series that I enjoyed the most. One of the reasons is because the best games in the series are of similar quality to one another. XIII is the most modern version and has jaw dropping gorgeous graphics. XI feels the most unique as it is a cross between The King of Fighters and Street Fighter. 2002 "feels" the best out of all of them. 98 is...well 98. Unfortunately, another reason to why it is so hard to choose is because I just haven't spent as much time with this series as I have with other fighting games. While I can appreciate the series and definitely see the quality of the games, they just aren't that very fun to play compared to other mainstays in the genre. The characters feel too stiff and the game plays a too slow for my taste. There was also an awkward period in the 2000s when the series felt like it was in limbo as the production values were just very low. Possibly it is due to me growing up with A.D.D like fighting games such as Guilty Gear, but while I have tried to get into the series multiple times it just isn't for me.

That said, if I had to choose one game in the series, it would be 2002. Yes, I realize it falls into the "awkward period" I just described, but to me this game was the best "feeling" King of Fighters game and was the most fun to play. It clearly isn't a bad choice as the game is still regularly played today and even got an update called "Unlimited Match" for the Playstation 2 and Xbox Live Arcade in 2009, and for the PC last year. There are still couple dozen people playing online on the PC version everyday, and that doesn't take into account the other versions of the game.The fact that the game had had fourteen years of staying power is nothing to overlook, and speaks volumes of its quality.



81| Ys II: Ancient Ys Vanished - The Final Chapter

Released: December 21st, 1989

Definitive Version: PC; Also on: PCECD, DS, PSP, iOS, Android



There is a very good reason why I am listing Ys II and not Ys I, despite the games always being packed together. Ys I isn't a good game. To be fair most of the faults in the game lie in the ridiculously long incomprehensible "end" dungeon that takes up literally half the game. I could go into more detail, but this entry is about it's far superior continuation, Ys II. The best way to describe the game is that it is like Zelda but more focus on combat, story, and RPG elements. The game uses the same bump combat as Ys I, which involves the player just merely running at an enemy to damage them. This may sound too simplistic at first but depending on the timing and what angle the player hits the enemy, the amount of damage the player inflicts on the enemy and vice versa changes. It's actually really cool once one gets the hang of things.

Being honest, there isn't much to say about this game other than it really illuminates the classic "16-bit" adventure feel from games of that era. The game will give you "nostalgia chills" that you received from playing more well known 16-bit games from back in the day such as A Link to the Past and Beyond Oasis. The world is varied with a lot of charm and attention to detail put into it. While the story isn't the most lore heavy, it's engaging just enough to have your mind fill in the blanks. The game is also well paced as it seems whenever the player completes an objective, there is something else that interests them to keep them going.

Another shoutout that is well deserved is the quality of the remaster. Ys Chronicles I and II + for the Playstation Portable, Nintendo DS, and PC is wonderful. Falcom did a perfect job in updating the game for the modern era with redone sprite work, a choice of music between versions, and a retranslation. The game could seriously pass as being developed from the ground up rather than a reworking of an existing product. Truly the definitive version of the game.

Falcom is one of the best developers in the industry, and Ys II standing the test of time so well proves why. Since its inception, the company has always focused on charming characters and tight game design first and foremost. The company doesn't always follow the flavor of the month trends many other companies do and it truly shows. If you want to play a game that is a testament to Falcom's game design, Ys II isn't a bad choice.
 
Nov 8, 2011
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#20
I disagree with all Top 100 lists on concept alone. The number is so big it just becomes a list of all good games ever made, and there are so many that the listmaker can't keep it all straight in his head so you end up with oddities placed 10 positions higher/lower than they should be.
 
Dec 7, 2014
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#21
i think TLOU is by far the most overrated game of all time

i keep seeing how everyone praises the story while shits on the gameplay and says it's bad

for me, TLOU had a typical Hollywood zombie movie story that we have seen hundreds of times and i really didn't like it, even the characters were unlikeable except for Joel, but what i liked about the game was the gameplay, never felt so good to beat the shit out of someone in a game, smashing their heads to the wall was satisfying, it was the best gamelay i have ever played until MGS V came, but still TLOU is the king of melee combat
 
Jun 2, 2014
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#22
You have a very wide-range of choices spanning several platforms. It looks like a good list to pick out forgotten titles. I wouldn't rank Hotline Miami above any Capcom game ever made though, but that's just me. Subscribed.

i think TLOU is by far the most overrated game of all time.
It is. It's a mediocre game ranked next to a masterpiece like Resident Evil 4.
 
Dec 2, 2010
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#23
I disagree with all Top 100 lists on concept alone. The number is so big it just becomes a list of all good games ever made, and there are so many that the listmaker can't keep it all straight in his head so you end up with oddities placed 10 positions higher/lower than they should be.
so far his top 100 and mine still have 0 games in common. There are tons of amazing games out there that 100 doesn't come close to covering them. Add different tastes and age ranges and you can still find a ton of variance.
 

Nuu

Banned
Nov 21, 2015
1,346
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#25
80| Wii Sports

Released: November 19th, 2006

Available On: Wii




Likely the most hated game in all of gaming history, Wii Sports to many represented a scary turn the industry made during mid-2000s. Due to Nintendo getting trounced with the Gamecube, they knew they had to try something different with their next platform. It was obvious that the core gaming audience was no longer interested in most of Nintendo's offerings. While Nintendo tried to win them back with the Gamecube with games like Eternal Darkness as well as exclusive titles in the Resident Evil and Metal Gear franchises, at the end of the day it wasn't enough. As a result Nintendo decided to go after a very different market, adults, specifically adult women. Initially people thought Nintendo was crazy for trying to capture such a demographic. Then the sales numbers for December came in and the Wii was the best selling console. This initially was met with a warm response due to the fact that it didn't trounce the other consoles as well as people being ecstatic that Sony's death grip on the console market was no longer a reality. However, something began to happen. The Wii was very successful...too successful. It was successful to the extent that it began to outsell the Playstation 3 and the Xbox 360 combined. On top of that many traditionally core publishers such as EA and Ubisoft began to put their laurels behind more casual game development. Frightened by this, gamers began panicking as they feared a future where Halo and Grand Theft Auto would lose priority to Carnival Games and Just Dance.

This fear proved to be unwarranted. Eventually the Wii's casual audience moved on to far cheaper mobile games. Ironically the fear of the Wii hasn't died out, the animosity has just moved toward the mobile platform. Looking at the era today is like looking at a snapshot in time. It bring back a lot of memories both good and bad. It also leads us to be a lot more objective of certain games of that era as we are no longer in the thick of it. So how good is Wii Sports exactly? It is after all the game that started off this whole thing, or at least in the console space. Truth be told, Wii Sports is actually a very good game. It was just very misunderstood at the time. Sure it isn't the deepest game out there, but it is definitely very fun to play. And that's what made the game so successful, it is fun to play. There is a certain tingly feeling you get when you barely manage a squeeze of a win after playing your friend in Wii tennis. What also made the game so successful is accessibility. Anyone can pick up and play the game, even your parents. The controller is just a remote control where you have to make the same motions you do as in actually playing the sport. It's so simple and intuitive that I have yet to run into anyone who doesn't know how to use the controls within the first minute or so. This results in a lot of potential players as well as potential consumers for the Wii console.

The game offers a variety of different games to choose from. This includes golf, bowling, boxing, tennis, and baseball. All of these games are implemented reasonably enough, except perhaps for boxing, but I found bowling and tennis to be the best. One can also not mention Wii Sports without Miis. Miis were cute little cartoony avatars players created on their Wii console in which certain games would incorporate them as playable characters. Wii Sports was the most well known game to do this. Players would control their Mii as they played one of the five sports available in the game. So not only could you trounce your friend in your favorite sport on the Wii, but you can also physically see it as well.

As I said before, I feel that Wii Sports, as well as that entire era of games, was very misunderstood. Miyamoto said it best in what Nintendo was trying to achieve. He talked about how games use to be enjoyed by all demographics with titles such as Space Invaders and Pong. However, after the Atari era, and much to Nintendo's credit, games began to become a little more complicated with more buttons, multiple character actions, input memorization, map screens, attributes, etc. While this certainly isn't a bad thing and satisfied the teenage boy in the family, but it left the mother and father alienated toward games. They didn't want to memorize combos or engage in resource management, they just simply wanted to play. And that's what Wii Sports is, it isn't a sports simulation or an adrenaline based arcade titles, it is simply a game that you play. Nintendo didn't want to cannibalize core games, they wanted to expand the market by opening the gates to more casual players. And they succeeded.



79| Quake III Arena / Quake Live

Released: December 2nd, 1999

Definitive Version: PC (All major OSes); Also on: XBLA for Xbox 360, DC, PS2




Let's get this out of the way. I was originally an Unreal Tournament guy. I was introduced to that series through my cousins who, at the time, recently purchased a new PC. I was confused about the game at first because it seemed very strange as they installed some mods in the game that allowed them to play as strange characters, such as The Mask from the movie "The Mask", the Jim Carrey film. However, when they actually started playing the game it looked very cool. It was a lightening fast paced multiplayer first person shooter. When I tried the game I was hooked. Unfortunately it wouldn't be for another seven years or so before I would play the series again. When I got Unreal Tournament 2004 with my newly built PC, I fell in love. The speed, the adrenaline, and the chaos. At the time I heard about Quake III, but never really gave it a shot. I finally did after a period where I no longer had a high-end computer, and I was very surprised. Sure the game didn't have the variety of Unreal Tournament, but it made up for it with it by dialing up the speed and chaos a few more notches. And overall felt like a more competitive game as most maps were small to moderately sized with occasional open areas designed for deathmatch. This is in contrast to many of Unreal Tournament's maps which were often huge landscapes and felt more akin to something like Halo. These two things combined made me prefer Quake over Unreal.

The gist of this game is that it is an arena shooter through and through. If you want to give someone of an example of a platformer, you give Super Mario Bros. If you want to give someone an example of an arena shooter, you give Quake III Arena. The game starts off with the player choosing which mode they want to play. The most popular mode, deathmatch, involves multiple players online moving across the map shooting one another, as they gather weapons and health until who ever racks up the most kills wins. It's a very simple concept, but it works flawlessly. Another thing that makes the game stand out from typical first person shooters, isn't just the speed, but the mobility. Players will be able to jump and hop all throughout the arena as they can go up platforms and different levels of the map in order to get to the perfect spot to raise hell on your opponents. However, the maps are designed in such a way that makes camping dangerous. There isn't a spot you can stay in too long before you won't be spotted as no place is too well hidden. All these things add up into a very frantic and fun game.

The game was updated and released as a free to play browser game on August 6th, 2010, however it was later changed to be priced at a whooping $10. What was once the most technically demanding game on the market can now be played on a Chromebook. The game is fantastic, but like all updated iterations has old fans complaining about the changes. No matter where you stand though, both games have active communities and both games are a blast to play. Almost twenty years later Quake III is still one of the most active first person shooters around. Its staying power really displays how timeless it is. With an entry price of $10, there is no reason not to at least try the game.



78| Castlevania: Rondo of Blood

Released: October 29th, 1993

Definitive Version: PC Engine CD; Also on: Virtual Console for Wii, PSP



When one brings up Castlevania the first thing that comes to mind are the recent "Metroidvania" games. Essentially side-scrolling action-adventure games with RPG elements. While these games are certainly great, they aren't what the series was originally known for. Castlevania built its name by being a side-scrolling action series that was focused on airtight level mechanics and design. Armed with a whip and a choice of a special sub-weapon, the player guided their vampire hunter as they scaled platforms and fought enemies along the way until they reached the boss at the end of the level. A criticism could be given that this was all very simplistic, but that was the beauty of the games. There were no distractions or gimmicks, just tried and true gameplay.

Castlevania: Rondo of Blood is seen as many as the not only the magnum opus of these style of games, but also the swan song. Released on the PC Engine CD n Japan in 1993, it brought Castlevania to the disc age as it took advantage of the CD medium by having animated cutscenes, voices, and a killer soundtrack. Castlevania was widely acknowledged as having some of the most catchiest and memorable music in gaming and the developers capitalized that on the CD medium by composing what is arguably the best soundtrack in the series. However, the game didn't stand out due to its presentation. The gameplay is why it gets so much love. Rather than continuing down the path set out by Super Castlevania IV which made the game easier and more accessible, Rondo of Blood lines up closer to its NES counterparts as it offers more limited mobility and tougher difficulty. It takes the "less is more" approach and manages to pull it off strikingly.

Of course mechanics can only take a game so far, design is a crucial part of games too, and here Rondo of Blood also excels. The levels are carefully crafted as it seems that ever inch of them seem to be tailored around the player's experience. No platform is close enough to be too easy of a jump, no enemy is placed where they will be a sure kill, no sub-weapon is designed to be abused for too long. The game makes you work to progress and it makes completing each level that much sweeter. To be honest though, the same is true in inverse. No platform is too far away to be nearly impossible to get to, no enemy is placed in an area where they'd surely kill the player, and every sub-weapon that the player receives will find some use in its area for some time. The game may be tough, but it is also fair.

Yet another category where this game impresses is with the bosses. They aren't the greatest bosses in gaming, but they are all unique, memorable, and challenging. From a golem, to a dragon, to a werewolf, these bosses may seem cliche but they all behave differently and require the player to retool their strategy. The game might not be Dark Souls, but nevertheless fighting the bosses is still one of the most enjoyable parts of it.

It's really easy to see why this game is so loved. It is not only arguably the last high quality entry in the same vein as the classic series, but also for the longest time the lost entry. Up until the PSP remake in 2007, which also included the original game, there was no English release of the game available. Sure one doesn't exactly require the knowledge of Japanese to play it, but unless you imported the game from Japan you were shit out of luck. On top of that it was only available on the Turbograffx CD, which in the West was seen was one of those "other" platforms. These two things combined resulted in the game gaining a mystical status among the gaming community. Does the game live up to the hype? It certainly does.


77| Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest

Released: November 20th, 1995

Definitive Version: Super Nintendo; Also on: eShop for New 3DS, Virtual Console for Wii U and Wii, GBA




Everyone during the '90s was familiar with Donkey Kong Country. Whether they owned it, rented it, or played it at a friend's house, they were familiar with it. What made the game stand out so much were its graphics. Never before had pre-rendered graphics been implemented so well on a console. Sure there were games like Mortal Kombat that used pre-rendered sprites and what not, but they looked nowhere near as good as Donkey Kong Country. With the help of the Super FX chip, as well as a peculiar art style, Donkey Kong Country looked as if you were playing Toy Story, before Toy Story even existed. Unfortunately, a side effect of popularity is a group of vocal haters. Many claimed that the game had lukewarm gameplay at best and its graphics were the only thing carrying its success. Even Nintendo legend Shigeru Miyamoto said as much, which added more fuel to the fire. Truth be told these comments are unwarranted. Like all of Rare's platformers, Donkey Kong Country is a game a with very tight mechanics and polished game design, even though they went a little overboard at times with mini-games and collectibles (this would just be a mere taste of things to come). While it is true that much of its success was built on its revolutionary graphics technology, it doesn't mean that the game didn't have quality gameplay to match its success.

Donkey Kong Country is one of the best platformers out there, but the sequel managed to outdo it in every single aspect. Diddy's Kong Quest built upon everything Rare learned from the first entry and expanded it even more. The game now featured more ambitious levels with even more variety, more interesting animals to control, bigger and better bosses, and even better graphics. It was essentially Donkey Kong Country with added hot sauce. The only real significant difference between the two games is the lack of Donkey Kong. This is due to the fact that the plot revolves around Donkey Kong being kidnapped and thus his brother Diddy and his girlfriend Dixie have to save him. Diddy plays exactly like he did in the previous entry. In fact they use he exact same sprite. Dixie however is a bit a different. Her main feature is the abilities to twirl her body so her hair acts like a helicopter, thus she glides in the air. This is a lot like the tanooki suit in Super Mario Bros series but covers a much shorter distance. Dixie is a very welcome change in the series. Donkey Kong in the first game was big, bulky, and slow. Thus using two small, nimble, and quick characters is a welcome change that noticeably speeds up the game.

There is also the matter of the music in the game. The music in the Donkey Country game's are all great, and the second game in the series is no exception. It is so good in fact that it deserves its own paragraph.Throughout the game, you will find many high quality tracks, that are often a cross between being ambient and melodic.It is the absolute perfect match for the game.

The Donkey Kong Country series was a turning point for Rare. It was when the studio stopped being just another developer and began being the well renowned developer we know today...or at least used to know. During the '90s Rare made groundbreaking games that transformed their respected genres and the Donkey Kong Country series was certainly part of that. Rare gave it there all when working on the series to make a name for themselves, and it shows. Being that the second entry is the best by a good margin makes it a must play.



76| 999: Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors

Released: November 16th, 2010

Avaliable On: Nintendo DS




For most of the Nintendo DS's lifespan, if you were to ask someone what the best adventure game was on the system you would almost unanimously get the Phoenix Wright series as an answer, with possibly Hotel Dusk as the sole exception. Being the best in the genre for the portable was quite a title as due to its touch screen and portability it became the go to system for adventure games, specifically point and click and visual novels. Four months before the release of the system's three dimensional successor, a new game for the aging handheld arrived. Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors (often called 999 by sane people) was yet another adventure game for the platform that began making rounds. It quickly became a cult hit due to its unique storyline, relatable characters, and mysterious setting.

The gist of the game is that the player has been abducted and put on a ship. They wake up bewildered in a small room when it begins to fill up with water. The only exit is locked and needs a specific combination to open. The player then has to solve a series of puzzles in order to figure out the correct combination to open the door. When they exit the room eight other strangers emerge. It turns out all of them have been kidnapped as well. Suddenly the intercom for the ship comes on and apparently all nine passengers are being tested as they have a set amount of time to figure out all of the puzzles and leave the ship or else the ship will sink. As one could imagine, there is some initial sense of discord as strangers don't always seem to want to work together. To capitalize on this, according to the intercom, the broadcast is just a recording as the one who put all the passengers on the ship and is the brains behind the operation is one of the nine passengers among them.

The introduction perfectly sets the tone for the game. Story and atmosphere wise, the entire game is built on the lack of trust. Passengers are often divided into teams in order to go into specific rooms to solve puzzles. Obviously not everyone trusts one another so being forced to work with others they aren't comfortable with makes for some great dialogue and story telling. Suspicion seems to take constant priority as each character and even the player constantly guess who is the one really behind this twisted experiment and why. To further peak the player's interest, each character is unique and has an intriguing background. In a way the player bonds with the characters, but knows that they shouldn't get too attached as they all seem to have some type of skeletons in their closet.

The introduction also does a good job laying out the actual gameplay. The entire game progresses as such: engaging puzzle in room -> lengthy story segment -> rinse and repeat until the end. This is the game's biggest flaw by far. It is just far too repetitive as the same basic formula is repeated over and over again. To the game's credit many of the puzzles are very well done and memorable. However, some are also a huge headache. At times the puzzles are just a bit too cryptic and the fact that the room's can be confusing to navigate through doesn't help. Still if the player puts their mind to it they will be able to clear the room, and there is a certain satisfaction one gets from the "aha!" moment one gets after being stuck on one step for fifteen minutes and finally figuring things out.

Last but not least, the game has a fantastic soundtrack that everyone should listen to. Its electronic beats mixed with suspenseful chords really give the game its own identity. The soundtrack also ventures into music that sounds a bit unsettling, as the game really capitalizing on the question of "who is this person and why are they doing these things to us?"

999 is one of the last games in the DS's long list of adventure titles. Over the years it has gained a strong cult following and the Zero Escape series is one of the most recognizable in the genre. If one is curious to see just how the series got its start or is merely interested in a game that will keep them guessing both with quality puzzles and opaque story, you can't go wrong with 999.
 

SolVanderlyn

Thanos acquires the fully powered Infinity Gauntlet in The Avengers: Infinity War, but loses when all the superheroes team up together to stop him.
Oct 14, 2012
27,300
2
895
za warudo
creditconcerto.blogspot.com
#26
I love top lists. They offer a unique perspective that only that author can give. There's also an inherent appeal in the concept of the list - will my favorite game make it? Will I agree? What's next!?

Subbed.
 
Sep 19, 2016
1,742
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#29
i think TLOU is by far the most overrated game of all time

i keep seeing how everyone praises the story while shits on the gameplay and says it's bad

for me, TLOU had a typical Hollywood zombie movie story that we have seen hundreds of times and i really didn't like it, even the characters were unlikeable except for Joel, but what i liked about the game was the gameplay, never felt so good to beat the shit out of someone in a game, smashing their heads to the wall was satisfying, it was the best gamelay i have ever played until MGS V came, but still TLOU is the king of melee combat
As a wise dunkey once said,

https://youtu.be/tTsBn36yPrg?t=12s
 
Dec 7, 2014
3,120
708
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#31
(IMO) any top 10 list that doesn't include the following games, it's broken, Resident evil 4, Shadow of the colossus, MGS 3, Demon's souls and The witcher 3( my personal top 5 games of all time )
 
Jun 27, 2015
1,908
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#32
Game x is not on the list? List is garbage confirmed.
Game Y is too high/low. Your opinion is wrong, OP.
Tell me what your #1 game is so i will know to stop following the list.
Here, I hope that covers everything

Edit:looks i'm too late
 

Nuu

Banned
Nov 21, 2015
1,346
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#35
75| Chrono Trigger

Released: August 22nd, 1995

Definitive Version: Nintendo DS; Also on: Virtual Console for Wii, SNES, Playstation, iOS, Android




Frequently said to be the greatest RPG of all-time, Chrono Trigger is as timeless as its premise. Released in 1995, the game broke many barriers and conventions in the JRPG subgenre. The game didn't have random battles, it didn't really have a Medieval setting, it allowed the player to make choices to effect the overarching story, and finally the game was made to be replayed as it even offered a new game plus option. While many of these things are standard in the genre today, back in 1995 these things were practically never seen before, and to have them all in one single game was revolutionary.

Chrono Trigger's plot revolves around a boy who goes to an annual festival. Not long after arriving he physically runs into a girl. Due to his generosity, or more accurately the girl's persistence, he ends up showing her around the event. Eventually the boy bumps into a friend of his who wants him to test our her latest invention, the telepod. It is more or less a teleporter. The boy volunteers and goes through unscathed, unfortunately this can't be said for his female companion when she tries it. It turns out due to her having on a mysterious pendant she ends up going back in time. Thus the boy grabs the pendant and goes through the same telepod to retrieve the girl. This is just the very tip of the story which extends far further. Throughout the game the player will go as far back in the past as the Jurassic Age to so far in the future they reach the end of time itself. The only thing that matches the variety of time periods you will explore is the set of cast and characters you will encounter. Each major character has their own unique traits and personality that is melded within the era they reside. This results in a very engaging story that manages to even stand out in the modern age of CGI-like graphics and cinematic story telling. To add on to this, the story itself seems to hit the perfect medium as it is not so thin that it is practically non-existent like most 16-bit JRPGs, but not so text heavy that it is basically a visual novel like most JRPGs in the 32-bit era. It achieves the perfect balance of telling the story and having the player's mind fill in the gaps.

The presentation of the game was second to none at the time. For starters the graphics are incredible. They look great even today, and there are some scenes in the game that makes one wonder just how this was all achieved without the Super FX chip. That said, the game just doesn't look pretty, but it also moves pretty. The animation is very smooth for a Super Nintendo game as it seems that almost every animation has at least three frames to it. The soundtrack is one of the best of the era. There is a reason why so much of the games music is still to this day recycled in so many Youtube videos. Not only are the songs catchy and memorable, but Squaresoft somehow got one of Rareware's technical wizards on board to have the sound come out clear and modern. But what really steals the show is the script. Translator Ted Woosley managed to bring modern localization standards to a Super Nintendo game. The writing is virtually free from spelling errors, the plot in the game makes perfect sense, and the characters all have weight and emotion when they speak. Keep in mind this was an era where dialog boxes would often be limited to four or five words with countless spelling errors. Ted Woosley didn't just raise the bar, he kicked it sky high.

Unfortunately, while the story and presentation of the game is timeless, the actual game design is less so. While the battle system is far ahead of most RPGs of its era, in the modern day it is a bit dated. Battles are won by often performing the same attacks over and over again. Occasionally the game throws a curve ball by having bosses with multiple limbs and different attributes, but they are few and far in between. While the areas in the game look pretty, it is at times difficult to tell where a path and exit is. There is one particular map in the Jurassic time period that made me want to pull my hair out. Save points also can be placed in questionable parts in the game leading to some significant pacing issues as it isn't that fun replaying the same area again and again. The difficulty of the game can also fluctuate. Most of the time the difficulty is perfect, however there are a few parts of the game that I felt were a bit too difficult, specifically some of the bosses two thirds through the game. Where the game really stands out in gameplay are its choices and side quests. As said before, the choices in the game have a lot of weight to them as they can shift the story and even change the entire ending of the game. There are also multiple sides quests in the game that will force the player to explore different time periods to complete. Reading this on paper one may be worried that this may make things too confusing, but it works seamlessly while rarely holding the player's hand.

Chrono Trigger is one of gaming's most infamously legendary titles. After playing the game it is easy to see why. The plot, characters, writing, music, and graphics are all so timeless. While I concur that the game has aged well, it doesn't mean it hasn't been surpassed. The story and characters in the game are great, however being that there are twenty years worth of games that have been released in the genre since the game's initial release, a few are bound to surpass it in that category. While the story and presentation are as ripe as ever, the game design has become a little stale. The combat system is archaic by today's standards and the maps could use a little work. Overall, Chrono Trigger could indeed be called a masterpiece as its faults are few and its strengths are many. Even when comparing it to most JRPGs today it still does many things games in the genre could learn from, and that's saying something from a game that is over twenty years old that was released when its respected genre was only ten.



74| Ghost Trick

Released: January 11th, 2011

Definitive Version: iOS; Also on: DS



New IPs are a very tough thing to do. Gamers and publishers alike enjoy the familiar. There is far less risk of being burned when investing one's money in a known product rather than an unknown one. During the late 2000s the Ace Attorney series was red hot. Being given a second breath of life in Japan due to the Nintendo DS re-releases and the localization being a sleeper hit in Western markets resulted in the series being amongst the most recognized in the gaming community. However, when series creator Shu Taukumi was asked if he wanted to be involved in the fourth entry, the first new entry in the series since it became so renowned, he declined. Instead he wanted to work on a new game, a different game. Ghost Trick is that game.

The biggest difference between Ghost Trick and Ace Attorney is that the former is a lot more ""puzzly"" than the other. Rather than undergoing detective work as you explore rooms, find items, and use gizmos and gadgets, Ghost Trick has the player interact with their surrounding environment. The plot revolves around a man who recently died and is now a disembodied ghost. The first thing he sees is a young woman about to be assassinated. She unfortunately meets an unfortunate end. However, it is then discovered that the ghost has the power to not only briefly rewind time, but also the ability to possess and manipulate objects. With this power the player saves the young woman's life and proceeds to venture toward the mystery of how the young woman, the assassin, and himself are all connected.

The game uses a sideview angle, like a play stage, as the player can scroll through the entire map as they can possess and manipulate objects to do their bidding. Often these manipulations are just simple things such as opening the cabinet door, ringing a phone, or opening an umbrella. When all of these minor actions add up one could solve quite a dilemma such as letting a young woman escape a killer, cluing the police to a suspect's whereabouts, or leading a character away from a car crash. The game essentially has the player in control of the butterfly effect.This may seem mundane, but it is surprisingly fun. It is always very enjoyable going through trial and error to see what works and what doesn't, what object you can and can't reach, etc. The puzzles are difficult enough that they will require multiple playthroughs, but fair enough that you won't be spending hours on end trying to solve one.

The Ace Attorney series is known for having charming characters and light-hearted murder mysteries. Ghost Trick continues on with this tradition with a diverse cast of likable characters who you just want to see more of. This particularly lends itself to the gameplay as one not only wants to complete a stage to progress, but also to protect the characters.The writing is very humorous and it isn't uncommon for many of the lines to give the player a chuckle. Each cast member has their own personality and backstory that is told with great detail which really gives the game a much deeper lore than it is required to. Or if you want a short summary of the quality of the characters, story, and writing, it is from the creator of the Ace Attorney series. Yeah that sums up things pretty nicely.

The graphics in the game are mesmerizing. Despite having 2D gameplay and being developed for the Nintendo DS, the game uses 3D models and then transfers them into pre-rendered sprites. Normally this would be looked down upon, but the developers managed to use the advantages of 3D while mimicking the parts of 2D that matter. For starters the game uses simple polygonal models, shaders, and textures. Sure this means that the game wouldn't win any awards in the tech department, but it does mean that the game has very clean look to it that stands the test of time. But where the game really stands out is in the animation. It's really better to show than to tell:



The developers continued to use 3D models to their advantage as they incorporated tons of keyframes for each animation to make them look seamless. Keep in mind this was for the Nintendo DS which didn't exactly have a lot of RAM to work with. The clean 3D models coupled with the smooth animation results in the game pioneering its own unique style.

Being honest, the game doesn't really have any faults. I mean sure the soundtrack isn't the best out there but it's still great. The story isn't going to make any top ten lists but it is still a very fun ride. The puzzles aren't the most engrossing out there but they still give your brain a workout. Unfortunately this is exactly what keeps the game from ranking higher on the list. It's a game where the whole is better than the sums of its parts. However, even considered that, when the parts combine it may make for a high quality product, but not something that would get too far on a list of the greatest games ever produced. Regardless the game is more than worth being played and anyone who enjoys Ace Attorney should pick it up. It is unfortunate that the game performed so poorly. Being released at the tail end of the Nintendo DS's lifespan did the game no favors. Luckily the game isn't rare at all and can be found for a dozen dollars or two for the DS. I don't say this often, but I would recommend the iPad version of the game instead. Sure it runs at half the frame-rate than the DS version, which is a huge disadvantage. But the disadvantages end there as the graphics are much clearer, the sound is much better, and the controls are sharp with the ability to tween and drag the camera with ease and accurately select objects on a huge screen rather than a 3 inch one. Like its protagonist and sister series, it is a game that deserves to be resurrected and given a second chance.



73| Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake

Released: July 20th, 1990

Definitive Version: Any; Available On: MSX2, PSV, PS3, Xbox 360, PS2




It isn't uncommon when a traditionally 2D game series makes the jump to 3D that it takes a lot of influences from its previous two dimensional entry. Ocarina of Time took a lot of influence from A Link to the Past as it included many areas and situations from the previous game. The same goes for Metroid Prime as it took a lot of influence from Super Metroid. However, there is a certain other series that took a lot of influence from its pixelated predecessor. Metal Gear Solid for the Playstation broke a lot of ground with its cinematic tone, blockbuster story, unique gameplay, and several quirks in game design. The stealth gameplay, the theme of a mixture of Japanese anime robots and Western spy thriller, finding specific codec numbers by looking at the game's disc case, etc. What most people don't know, is that it turns out that many of these things really weren't that unique. In fact almost all of this was taken directly from the first two games in the series. Specifically from Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake.

The game plays exactly like Metal Gear Solid. You play as Solid Snake an elite spy for the U.S. government who's objective is to infiltrate the enemy base. In a top down perspective, Snake will be walking and crawling throughout the entire facility as he tries to avoid enemies. The top right of the screen has a map system that shows exactly where each enemy is. It's good to pay attention to this as much as possible because if an enemy catches sight of Snake an alarm will go off and every enemy on the map will attack him, as well as back up being called. If Snake manages to escape and remain undetected for a few minutes then the alarm will stop and the enemies will let down their guard again. Snake can equip himself with a variety of weapons ranging from pistols, to machine guns, to rocket launchers, to his bare fists. On top of that he can also use items such as key cards to open up doors, cigarettes to slowly kill himself, or a box to hide himself in.

As demonstrated by the previous paragraph, all of Metal Gear's core designs are perfectly present in this game. However, the similarities don't just end there. Many of Metal Gear Solid's unique "think outside the box" design decisions are present in this entry as well. For example there is a point in the game where you have to look through the game's manual to see a picture of a codec call that you have to enter to contact an important individual. Another part of the game revolves around the player trying to find a hollow part of a wall, so the player has to knock on all of the walls in a room to find it and use some C4 to blow a hole in it. Being honest I was halfway expecting to come across a boss fight where I'd have to plug my controller into the number 2 port.

If there is one thing that Metal Gear Solid has that Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake lacks, it is a quality presentation and story. Now don't get me wrong, for its time Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake was on the bleeding edge when it came to story and cinematic presentation in games...for its time. Things changed a lot in regards to presentation and story from 1990 to 1998, and even more so from 1990 until today. For starters the characters are all very generic and one dimensional. They virtually have no personality what so ever. This shouldn't come to much surprise as the characters are completely ripped off from popular American movies, as thier portraits from the codec calls of the original MSX2 version demonstrate.



The story is also very straight forward. "Stop the infamous underground terrorist group from creating a super-secret high end weapon so they can't take over the world." To be fair, Metal Gear Solid uses the same premise, but manages to make things a bit more complex and interesting due to various side-stories and secrets told throughout the game. Really, what salvages the story is seeing various tidbits you hear about from subsequent Metal Gear games such as Big Boss's demise and Frank Jaeger's betrayal. You keep hearing about these things in even the most modern Metal Gear games, and it's satisfying to finally play through it.

Overall, Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake was a game way ahead of its time. It may not have all the flash and pizazz of its more contemporary entries; however that is also its charm. While modern entries of the series tend to be loaded with cutscenes and intense action segments, these things can also result in bloat and too much of a deviation from the core gameplay. One could view Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake as lacking substance compared to the other games in the series, while one could also see it as trimming the fat.



72| Muramasa: The Demon Blade

Released: September 8th, 2009

Definitive Version: Playstation Vita; Also on: Wii



"Like a painting" is a saying that is thrown around a little too loosely in gaming. The term has been used to describe games from God of War III to The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. While those games do in fact look pretty, we have to remember just what a painting actually looks like. Japanese developer Vanillaware is one of the extremely rare development studios that actually manages to actually achieve the statement. Rather than using 3D cel-shaded models, pixel art sprites, or even tradigital animation, Vanillaware paints characters and backgrounds on a computer and break them up into multiple parts in layers so they can animate them. The game looks like a painting because the game is a painting.

Throughout the game the player will be hypnotized by the attention to detail on the backgrounds and characters. The game's unique traditional Japanese art style elevates the eye candy by a significant degree and also really sets the tone and atmosphere for the game. While the animation isn't the best, it is still reasonable enough. When these things all come together the result is visual wizardry where you will often find yourself standing in multiple locations just to embrace the scenery.



Or some times running around, whatever works best.



Now while a game can look pretty, that doesn't necessarily mean that it plays well. Luckily for Muramasa, it seems that the attention to the art didn't shift much attention away from the gameplay. The game is best described as an evolution of the classic 16-bit action side-scroller. You can choose between two characters a young man and a teenage girl. Both wield samurai blades and have fairly simple action and combo sequences. The world is explored by moving left or right. Eventually you will reach a "door" to which you can enter and open up a new route with additional "doors" to multiple pathways. While exploring the world the player will come across a variety of enemies including ninjas, samurai, eagles, ghosts, and what have you. Fighting these enemies is simplistic, but also fun. Again, it feels like a modern day take of a 16-bit game with simple inputs and most of the skill in avoiding and countering enemy attacks.

Where the gameplay really shines though is the boss battles. The bosses tend to be very ambitious and intimidating. They include heavenly giants that tower over the player, snake-like dragons that fly through the sky as the player dodges their flames, a giant Octopus in a stormy sea, etc. It is during these encounters where the combat shines the most as the player's skill and patience will be put to the test. These segments also look beautiful with huge characters with a massive amount of detail put into them.

The story of the game is very run of the mill. It features two characters, six on Vita, a young swordsman and a teenage girl who is possessed by a ruthless tyrant. The former involves the swordsman fighting for his country and commander, who is also his lover. The later involves a girl being controlled by the sprit of an outlaw who is out to get revenge. Personally I enjoyed the latter story significantly more as I felt that that those two protagonists were more developed character wise than the two protagonists in the other story.

While the gameplay is very good, I will admit that it is not enough alone to prop up the game to be ranked so high. In reality the reason why this game is remembered so much is due to the art. Beholding the game is indeed a spectacle. However, being pretty will only push a game so far. And while the game is still high in quality if one takes the gorgeous art off the table it is nothing groundbreaking. This doesn't mean that the game isn't an experience you will remember for quite some time, and like many 16-bit games it is highly replayable. There isn't that much better of a pitch for a game than it being a painting that you can also play.
 
Dec 2, 2010
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(IMO) any top 10 list that doesn't include the following games, it's broken, Resident evil 4, Shadow of the colossus, MGS 3, Demon's souls and The witcher 3( my personal top 5 games of all time )

You'll be happy to know MGS3 is the only one of those on my top 100 and its ranked at number 73.
 
Jun 2, 2014
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#46
Just letting you know OP, this thread will be divided by two warring parties in the future: one group focusing on the top 10 and one group focusing on the placement of Super Mario 64.
 

Nuu

Banned
Nov 21, 2015
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#48
71| X-Men 2: Clone Wars

Released: 1995 (Exact date unknown)

Avaliable on: Sega Genesis




You press the power button on your console, the game starts. No menu screen, no select screen, not even a console boot up. The second your press the power button the game starts with a random X-Men character. You run through the screen taking out enemies and avoiding obstacles. Things are difficult but with enough retries you pull through. Then the boot screen starts up, the license logo appears, and then a debriefing cutscene. You can now select what character to use for the next level. This is the first impression X Men 2: Clone Wars gives. The game delivers the coldest open possible. It sets the tone of the game from the start. Less fluff, more action.

X Men 2: Clone Wars is 16-bit side-scrolling action at its finest.You know the drill, keep running right, and occasionally left, while defeating a bunch of enemies until you get to the end boss. Defeat the boss and repeat. It may sound mundane, but with this game it really is not. The controls are tight, the jumping feels accurate, and attacking enemies leave the player with a feeling of satisfaction. The platforms in the levels are well spaced out, the enemies are placed in all of the correct spots, and the objective of each part of the level varies so the player doesn't get bored. The game certainly isn't innovative, it just does everything so right.

Having "X Men" in the title obviously means that it is a comic book game. The game uses the license very well as there are a good share of playable characters and they all play just like they do in the comics. Wolverine is great for close up and personal attacks, Cyclops beam attack is very useful for getting rid of enemies from afar, Gambit is designed to take advantage of his poles long reach, Nightcrawler is very sneaky and quick, etc. Not only does this offer the player to try out what playstyle they prefer (as long as the character survives), but it also results in the game being very replayable. In a way it makes the cold open make sense as it forces the player to play as a character they may not like, but could enjoy the way they play.

Graphically the game looks great. Developer Headgames manages to make the game look close to the comic as possible due to a wide variety of colors on the characters and the backgrounds. The game also spots a lot of nifty effects. Such as in the cold open level it is snowing and you can see tons of individual snow particles on the screen.



Sure you can see the effect is similar to putting static on the screen, but it is nevertheless a cool effect to see on the Genesis.

Unfortunately while the game looks good, it doesn't sound good. While the sound effects and music go well with the game, the quality is of the classic muted and muffled early '90s Genesis games. I mean just listen to this shit. At a time when Treasure, Game Freak, and Bluesky Software were putting out high quality music this just doesn't meet the standards.

There isn't much else to say about the game. It is your typical action oriented 16-bit sidescroller. What makes it stand out are the X Men property and that the game is extremely well polished. It is a bit unfortunate that the game seems to be ignored. The game came out just when the 16-bit era was wrapping up and likely was overshadowed by the Sega Saturn, Playstation, and the big Super Nintendo blockbusters. It also got overshadowed by its very successful and shitty predecessor X Men which is a very boring and terrible game. If you want the definitive superhero game of the 16-bit era then look no further.



70| Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies

Released: October 24th, 2013

Definitive Version: Nintendo 3DS; Also on: iOS




The Phoenix Wright series effectively came out of nowhere. With no advertising, on a relatively new platform, and having a very strange premise the games have managed to gain a significant cult following while achieving moderately successful sales in the West. The series left quite a legacy for the fifth entry to fill that was also the first on the next generation portable after the series made it big. Capcom took advantage of the series popularity and the more powerful hardware by incorporating high quality 3D graphics, stunning animation, and anime cutscenes. The series was back and was sure to let the fans know.

Anyone who is familiar with Phoenix Wright knows the gist of the series. You play as a young lawyer who has to defend a practically undefendable defendant. They face overwhelming odds against them and it is up to you to solve the mystery to get them off the hook. Players will be searching for clues as they interview, and outright interrogate, townsfolk and go to the scene of the crime to search for evidence. Once finished the second half of the game begins as the player attends a court room trial as they cross examine testimonials from witnesses. This process repeats around three times and by the end the player manages to turn the whole case on its head and the defendant is free.

This may appeal to some people, but to others not so much. In one's head someone probably thinks the game is akin to a playable version of "Law & Order". In actuality the game is a light-hearted and comical game filled with charming characters, intriguing mysteries, and a lot of humorous writing. Dual Destinies continues to fulfill these expectations. The game brings back a lot of old characters but introduces a lot of new ones as well. Phoenix, Apollo, Trucy, and Pearl make their way back to series with their same lovable personalities...well for the most part. A bit of time has passed since the last game so the characters have matured. While Phoenix is still a goofball at times he has also gained confidence and more experience as a lawyer. Apollo is no longer the rookie lawyer from the previous entry and now has a bit more experience under his belt, as well as seems to be more determined in finding the truth. Trucy is her same loveable and upbeat self. Pearl is still cute and innocent, but also has grown up and is now getting hit on by boys. I really pat Capcom on back for bothering to further mature and develop their characters rather than have them be stuck in arrested development like many other franchises.

The game also introduces a new cast of characters. Athena, who is arguably the protagonist, is likely the best female co-lead the series has had. She is very upbeat, determined, and uses the power of "analytical psychology" during the trial. Blackquill is Dual Destinies main "antagonist" as he is a defense attorney who is also in handcuffs. He's locked up in jail but due to his immense talent as a prosecutor the court system still lets him work his magic. He has the persona of a Samurai which results in him getting hotblooded and competitive, but also has him focused more so on revealing the truth than winning the case. There are many more characters in this entry, both returning and new, but I don't want to spoil too much.

The game adds a lot of new gameplay elements. The first obvious one is that due to the jump toward 3D, the camera has a lot more free movement. Rooms can be viewed in a lot more angles and it seems that every item can be turned 360 degrees every which way to be inspected. Every Phoenix Wright game since the second one always has some gimmick they introduce in the courtroom. For Dual Destinies this gimmick is the reading of emotions. Due to Athena's power of "analytical psychology" she can pick up when a witness feels strong emotions, much like a lie detector. It is up to the player to select what phrase is triggering that emotion, as well as just what emotion the witness is feeling. Another new feature is the "closer" in which at the end of each case the player has to choose from a selection bit by bit to piece together what really occured during the events of each case. Besides these things the game is more or less the usual Ace Attorney affair wth interrogations, cross examines, searching for clues, etc.

Perhaps what seperates this entry the most from previous games is the graphics. Rather than using 2D illustrations the game opts for cel-shaded 3D models. This may be a turn off at first but the game look great and the animation is even better. It also lends to some pretty cool effects such as the camera rotating and taking the Nintendo 3DS's 3D effect by the horns as the characters really pop-out.

Dual Destinies is a great entry in a great series. Capcom could have easily botched the series move to a new platform but instead they managed to keep everything fans loved and added some more. The first episode of the game is actually avaliable for free on iOS, and while it isn't the best version it wouldn't hurt to just try it out. It's free after all.



69| Genji Tsuushin Agedama

Released: December 13th, 1991

Available on: PC Engine




People tend to forget that gaming has always been a global marketplace. Never was this more apparent than during the 16-bit era. As most know, the Super Nintendo ended up coming on top in sales over the Sega Megadrive. However, what most don't know is that Sega's console actually outside Nintendo's in America. The primary reason why Nintendo sold so many more consoles than Sega is due to the fact that the Sega Megadrive was a dud in Japan. Much of this was due to the fact that prior to the Megadrive's release there was already a competing console with Nintendo. The NEC PC Engine was a small and sleek system specializing in glorified 8-bit games, the real Super Nintendo so to speak. It had volumes of shoot-em-ups, platformers, and quirky games that highly appealed to the Japanese market. Unfortunately the system pulled a reverse Sega, while it was successful in Japan, it bombed in every other territory. Not only did this result in the system's life getting cut short in the West, but also resulted in the lack of quality titles being localized. The meat of the PC Engine's library actually never left Japanese shores, however due to the age of Youtube, Ebay, and emulation many games have gotten much more exposure.

One of these games is Genji Tsuushin Agedama. Based on the short lived anime series, the game...well it's hard to tell exactly what the game is about being that it is all in Japanese. But it has something to do with a boy with powers in defeating evil monster forces. What makes the game such a gem is its unique gameplay. It combines the shoot-em-up genre and the platformer genre in perfect harmony. Like a shoot-em-up, the screen automatically scrolls to right while enemies pop up on the side of the screen. The player can control the character sprite as they can move them left or right The objective of the game is to shoot projectiles at enemies in order to defeat them. The game has a unique feature where the player can collect different colored gems in order to charge their attacks to do a special move. The longer they hold their attack for, the more powerful of a special move they get to use. These moves often revolve around huge projectiles taking up most of the screen as enemies are mowed down by flames, whirlwinds, genies, and what have you. The other major part of the game is the platforming. The game isn't Mario exactly, but throughout the levels players will be required to jump from platform to platform as they will be forced to time their jumps for a precise landing.

The game features a variety of levels that often have the player doing different things. Some are very straight forward, others will require the player to jump like a madman, some will actually control like a typical platform game even. It's surprising that a game that seems so simple on the surface actually has such a diverse set of stages. At the end of each area is a boss battle. These are actually pretty good. They won't make your head sweat like many acclaimed shoot-em-ups, but they are unique and charming enough to be enjoyable, even if they are a bit easy.

Graphically the game looks pretty good. The PC Engine really struggled to have sprites as detailed as its 16-bit rivals. It had a fraction of the color palette that the Megadrive had, which in turn had a fraction of the color palette that the Super Nintendo had. The silver lining of this is that it resulted in games having a simplistic style that ironically had them age better due to the fact that the graphics don't look as pixealated. Genji Tsuushin Agedama is no exception to this. While it isn't the most detailed game out there, the sprites look clean and inoffensive to the eye. This is especially true for the larger sprites, particularly the boss battles.

Genji Tsuushin Agedama is a game lost in the time. It had three things going against it. It was an anime game, released on a console that was only successful in Japan, and was released in a niche genre that only had a significant following in Japan. There was no way on Earth that the game would be released on Western shores. However due to technology and our connected lifestyles, it is easier than ever before for people to try these games, both through legal and not so legal means. Hopefully this game gets a second look by many Western gamers.



68| Devil May Cry 3: Special Edition

Released: March 1st, 2005

Definitive Version: Playstation 2; Also on: PC, PS3, and Xbox 360




In 2001 Capcom released a game titled Devil May Cry and thus invented a new genre. The "hard action genre" as I like to call it (no not "character action" that is the stupidest name ever and anyone who calls it that is an idiot). This genre separates itself from the likes of beat-em-ups and typical hack-n-slash games as it is a single player game with the franticness and combat complexity of a fighting game, but with the progression of a typical narrative focused single player game. The last point isn't a requirement, but the former two certainly are. Since the launch of Devil May Cry multiple other games in the genre have been released such as Ninja Gaiden, Bayonetta, and Metal Gear Solid: Revengeance. But like Street Fighter, Devil May Cry is always recognized as the mother franchise of the genre.

There was nothing like the original Devil May Cry when it was released. It was so fast paced and intense there was literally nothing to compare it to. It was as if someone who enjoyed playing the end credits scene of Street Fighter EX 3 decided to make a game modeled after it. Finally people who wanted the complexity, pace, and tension of a multiplayer fighting game can get something similar in a single player package. Obviously everybody who enjoyed Devil May Cry was stoked when the sequel was announced. Unfortunately the game turned out to be infamously bad. Capcom realized this and did the right thing by having the series return to its roots with its next entry. The result is that Devil May Cry 3 is widely seen as not only the best game in the series, but arguably the entire genre as well.

Gameplay wise the game is based of the first game, but improved in everyway. For starters the combat has been refined significantly. As usual the player controls a sword-wielding/gunslinging badass named Dante where they can implement a string of sword and gun attacks however way they please. Dante has multiple abilities such as the ability to double jump, slide on the ground, do back flips, run up walls, and juggle enemies. Combining Dante's fluid movement with the flexible combat system results in pulling off combos that are more than impressive and satisfying. Added to this entry is the ability to choose which class, or "style", Dante will be in. Each class results in Dante controlling a little differently and having different moves more inline with the specific class. For example swordsman results in Dante's combat abilities focused on sword wielding, while gunslinger obviously focuses on using his guns. There a six classes to choose from and they are all unique in their own way.

A game's combat system is only as good as the playable area designed around it, and Devil May Cry 3 makes note of this. For starters, the boss battles are incredible. Each boss pushes the player to their limit as every strategy and tactic will be exhausted to beat them. The sadisticness is a fair trade for the intense tension and challenge these fights present to the player and the pure satisfaction once a boss is defeated. Coming from that aspect, in a way the game's boss fights were Dark Souls before Dark Souls. You couldn't even save before the boss, you had to beat the entire area before you could even save. The bosses were also varied as some specialized in projectile attacks, others used their immense size as an advantage, while others fought up close and personal sword to sword.

It just wasn't the bosses that added to the game's tension. The enemy design was top notch as well with levels adding a lot of creativity of just how to approach them. This includes fighting in narrow spaces to do wall runs or in a strip club to twirl on a pole to launch yourself at enemies. There are also some unique segments such as a chessboard battle where the player's objective is to kill the oversized king and queen chess pieces as a horde of pawn pieces, along with a knight and bishop piece, block their way. It really showed the game had a lot of creativity behind it.

The only a few things bad about the game which mostly boils down to the story. Now I know that Capcom wanted the game to be over the top and self-parody itself, but all things considered it is just too much. The game attempts to mock the action hero trope but instead just makes it self look foolish in the process. The main reason is that it never tones it down. It seems that in every single scene Dante is in he is always showing off somehow and saying something cheesy. Outside of this the story is a bit typical for these types of games. A humongous ancient caste appears in the middle of a city. The rebel protagonist is all but forced to explore it. On his way he meets a young woman who is there for alternate reasons. And at the end the protagonist defeats the person who summoned the city. It is a little more complicated than that but that's the gist of it.

Devil May Cry 3 is a masterpiece of an action game. Gameplay wise it hits all the right notes with a deep combat system, challenging bosses, and experimental levels. The game isn't perfect as the story the stupid and the game's difficulty curve is a little to sharp. The music is also atrocious, I mean just listen to this song that plays throughout most of the game's encounters. But being over a decade old, it is pretty impressive that it could still be claimed to be "the best action game ever made" and few would disagree harshly.
 
Dec 7, 2014
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#50
It is. It's a mediocre game ranked next to a masterpiece like Resident Evil 4.
don't get me wrong, i don't dislike TLOU as a whole, no, i think it's an amazing game and one of the best games of the last generation, but hell no it's nowhere near the greatest game of all time

but after Uncharted 4, we know that Naughty dog games are heavily overrated

UC4 had shitty story( as always for the series), good gameplay but not the best because of MGS V, and a GOD DAMN AWFUL PACING FUCKED UP THE ENTIRE GAME

this is how i would sum up UC4: climb, climb, climb, very little combat, climb, climb, climb boring cutscene and repeat

i don't know why the game had very little action compared to the rest of the series but i believe it's because of the jaw dropping graphics that even a PC doesn't have a game as good looking

maybe they minimize the action in order to deliver a stunning looking game ? i don't know, i'm not an expert on these kind of things