Tuesday, September 20, 2011

This List Brought To You By The Word FUN.

TGS made my brain explode with all of the goodies expected to release over the next year. And Sony made me sad by retracting a release of Chrono Trigger and FFVI from the PSN. Hopefully it'll still happen.

But while my brain pulls back into normal mode, it's time for another one of my lists!

I think I'm the only one that's enjoying them.

My 10 favorite games of all time!

I know I've done a top 10 favorite cartridge games, but this is all encompassing. Though it should be of no surprise that some of those cartridges will make an appearance.



10.) Halo: Combat Evolved

I’ve played Doom, Half-Life, and Call of Duty (as much as I rag on the franchise it started out with good intentions). None of them hooked me as much as Halo. It took the FPS genre to a new level of game play, design, graphics, user interface, and multiplayer action. Which resulted in solidifying the Xbox console into the gaming market (for us Westerners at least). The XBrick wouldn’t have survived without Halo.

What I love about it: It transformed the FPS into a new, fun experience.
What I hate about it: Popularized the Xbox and caused a surge of headset rage.


9.) The Sims 2

I thought The Sims was a fantastic entry into the Will Wright legacy. The Sims 2 made everything a million times better. The concept of The Sims was meant to be a building simulation derived from Sim City. What emerged was an interest in the everyday lives of the Sims in this city that we have created for them. You could create the character of your dreams, still sporting one of the best cc systems to date. You can give them their dream job, or the worse job ever (and follow them to work too!). You can teach them to cook, to sing, to garden, or shove them into a pool with no stairs and watch them drown (it’s ok! They’re just computer characters). This is simulation gaming at it’s finest.

What I love about it: Endless story possibilities.
What I hate about it: Spawned the mess that is The Sims 3, Sims Online, and Medieval Sims.


8.) Chrono Trigger

Widely argued as one of the best RPG’s of all time. It’s a Square masterpiece. You are a group of travelers through time and space attempting to stop impending doom. With a wide array of unusual characters (Frog comes to mind), the ability to time travel, and see monsters on the screen (this was pretty new at the time; random battles were normal for RPG’s), and 13 unique endings, not to mention an awesome story that you could manipulate, it really was an innovation for games back then and today.

What I love about it: Every decision you make in the game affects what happens next. You can never play the same game twice!
What I hate about it: The Chrono franchise never took off like it should have. Which has nothing to do with the game, but more of the reality that we live in where innovation can sometimes cause death to a series.


I love and hate Rainbow Road so much.
7.) Mario Kart DS

I’ve love Mario Kart since it was first released on the SNES. It’s a simple concept. Memorable Nintendo characters from the Mario series race against one another in go-karts that shoot turtle shells and mushroom speed boosts. It’s also the first time we saw Mario rendered in more of a 3D environment, allowing you to see all of the characters from multiple angles amongst the roaming background. What I love about the DS version is that it captures the joy of the SNES game while bringing it into modern times. And the online play. By far the best use of online gaming for any Nintendo system.

What I love about it: It’s Mario fun for all ages.
What I hate about it: Needs more retro inspired levels.
 

6.) Resident Evil 4/Biohazard 4

The Merchant always creeped me out.
Long time RE fan, but this is the one game that put fear back into horror games. Past versions focused more on the exploration aspect, with minimal zombies. RE4 incorporated fast gun-play, quick controls and button cutscene, massive shootouts, and hoards of enemies in open areas. This is also when the series removed the “slow-moving, dimwitted zombie element.” Las Plagas gave a zombie-like appearance, but those infected still retained some intelligence. They were fast, strong, and wielded weapons. Shot-gun farmer not so fun to play against. And it was the type of story fans have been wanting from an RE game.

What I love about it: It’s still a great game after all of these years.
What I hate about it: Ashley Graham.
 

5.) GTA: Vice City

I’m one of those people that has played GTA from the beginning, back when it was only a PC game with a top-down view. It’s one of those games that is deceptively simple. With the release of Vice City, I found a whole new respect for the series. By far this is one of my favorite stories of all of the GTA games. And it perfectly captured the essence of the 1980’s in the U.S. The clothing, the colors, the music, the cars, the people, the dialogue, everything was SO TOTALLY 80’s. But it maintained the action, drama, and creativity we’ve come to expect from Rockstar. I can play this game a million times and never tire of it.

What I love about it: Retro done right.
What I hate about it: 80’s songs get stuck in my head for months on end.


4.) LittleBigPlanet 2

This is my only entry for games made for current gen consoles because it is the most innovative, imaginative, outspoken game in decades. LBP2 captures the magic of the first game, and really ramps it up. The story line for 2 felt more compelling. Sure you wanted to finish it to get all the stickers and items, but it wasn’t a grind doing so (like the first game). It also provide a wide array of new gadgets to play with for level design, including microchips, complex coding statements, and larger thermometer space. The things people have managed to create could easily rival some of the top games being made today. It is simply awe-inspiring what MediaMolecule has unleashed to the masses.

What I love about it: It allows you to explore your creativity in your way. Design a level, make music, make costumes, make stickers, whatever it is to your hearts content!
What I hate about it: The levels that get the most plays are copy/paste/h2h from LBP1.


Real sneaking requires a croc head.
3.) MGS 3: Snake Eater

My favorite in the series. It had the best story, the best characters, the best game play, and a wonderful nod to the NES sneaking style. This was the first game to use camouflage (I know, it only took 3 games for them to do this?), close quarters combat, a stamina gauge, and an injury-treatment system. Something that a real soldier in Naked Snake’s position would probably have to utilize. It was smart, witty, and the perfect game for the PS2. It’s also the first time you truly feel that this is a stealth game, deep in a jungle, making use of the materials around you as you try to stop an evil threat from nuclear war.

What I love about it: Hide and seek done right.
What I hate about it: There are 4 versions of this game.


2.) Final Fantasy IV

Anyone who reads my blog, you’ll probably ask why the heck I have FF4 on here and not 6, seeing as I listed it above 6 in my favoritecartridge games. Truthfully? I always have a debate between 4 and 6. They swap positions on fav at least once every 2 months. But I also didn’t want this list to be an homage to Square and Final Fantasy as I have a great appreciation for other games out there. FF4 was the first game that I remember playing where I gave a damn about the characters, this mission, and the fate of the world they lived in. It was the first time the music really captured the majesty and power of the events transpiring. I felt sad when certain characters died, and triumph when others succeeded at their goals. This game became everything that I loved about Final Fantasy.

What I love about it: Story, characters, music, and originality even in the repetition of the RPG universe.
What I hate about it: Why did so many people have to die?


This isn't the Wii version. This is the Saturn image!
1.) NiGHTS: Into Dreams

Clearly I’m a FF geek and I have sold my soul to SquareEnix. But even my love for FF can not compare to the power that is NiGHTS: Into Dreams. This game was the reason why I wanted a Sega Saturn. I remember the day when my mom and I went to Toys R’Us and purchased this game as I jumped up and down with glee when the man behind the counter handed me NiGHTS to take to the register. We got the special controller too. It was magic in a CD.

The story is a pretty simple concept with a emphasis on the importance of doubles (light and dark, two kids releasing the power of NiGHTS, twin seed city, two dream realms, etc.). The game controls were very intuitive as you fly around the level, with its strange nightmare creatures, collecting orbs to form high chains, in these elaborate and colorful levels. The game is just beautiful to watch and listen to. Smart level design and control schematics, catchy music, colorful levels, and a simple story make it a winning combo. It’s the one game I can play over and over again and it will always put a smile on my face.

What I love about it: Just about everything.
What I hate about it: Spawned Journey into Dreams (Wii game), and if you lose against a boss you had to start the level all over again.

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