November 17, 2012

100 greatest video games (by decade).

So TIME thinks. Do you agree?

Reader poll here.


Sorun said...

My favorite from the 80s was StarFlight. Not on the list.

edutcher said...

They've got to be kidding.


The only good one there is Prince of Persia.

They have Wolfenstein, which, for its time wasn't bad, but where's it's glorious descendant, Duke Nukem?

Especially, Duke Nukem 3D?

Where's Commandos?

Where's Gunship?

Where's The 7th Guest?

Where's Delta Force?

edutcher said...

PS Let's not forget C&C.

Anonymous said...

Yes to Oregon Trail, Super Mario Brothers, and Street Fighter. We had a Sega instead of Nintendo so a few of my childhood faves didn't make the cut. My favorite was a game called Fantasy Land (I think, it has been a long time).

Anonymous said...

Fantasy Zone not Fantasy Land.

rehajm said...

Most of the biggies are there, but there are glaring omissions from each era, and the order is odd- as if an alien anthropologist examined the history and assembled them best they could.

Did I just dream Missile Command? Pole Position? Spy Hunter?

Anonymous said...

That's a whole 'nother world that I know little about these days even though I once worked for a company that did games and wrote a Carmen San Diego for them.

It's an amazing aspect of current America that computer games are a bigger entertainment industry than Hollywood, but unless you're a gamer that world is almost entirely invisible beyond the racks of game packages and consoles at BestBuy.

Known Unknown said...

Galaga was the bomb. No Zaxxon?

Black Ops 2 opened with $500m in sales in the first 24 hours. That's crazy.

Ben Morris said...

This reads like a list written by people who don't really play video games, or haven't in a really long time.

It's also weird how they apparently picked representatives for various series, like Super Mario Bros. and Super Mario 64 to represent the Mario franchise which would more accurately probably have 8+ games on the list (SMB 2&3, SM World, Paper Mario, SM Galaxy 1&2, at least).

Which is fine if they just chose like the breakthroughs (SMB 1 for being the original side-scroller and 64 for being first 3D platformer), but then in other areas they went the opposite direction. E.g., picking Mass Effect 3, which was actually criticized for not being as innovative as its predecessors.

Also, shame on them for picking "Punch Out!" the post-controversy sterilized version of "Mike Tyson's Punch Out!" (which did deserve a spot) that no one ever played.

TerriW said...

Oh, I used to love Zaxxon -- its side scrolling "3d" graphics looked like The Future to me on our old Colecovision.

And Arkham City really is legitimately great. (Except, and I hate to be a whiner, they really went overboard with the catcalls and nasty stuff said about Catwoman when she's onscreen. It bums out our Batman-loving kids that we can't play it when they're awake.)

Saint Croix said...

Elevator Action is the Casablanca of video games.

There was an awesome game on the Sega, Dracula Unleashed. I spent 3 or 4 insane days trying to kill that damn vampire. I did it, too!

Saint Croix said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Known Unknown said...

Impossible Mission was pretty awesome for the time.

Epyx Summer Games, too.

Clyde said...

They've conflated coin-op video games like Asteroids, Battlezone, Pac-Man, etc., with computer games like Wizardry and Civilization. VERY different experiences (and price points!). I fed a lot of quarters into the former.

Also, they should have Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim for the 2010s. It's leaps and bounds better than Oblivion was.

Ironclad said...

Ico and Shadow of the Colossus prove that games can have a great story and be totally out of the normal mode.

Demon's Souls has so much play depth while retaining difficulty in replays.

And Skyrim should have been on the list. Mass Effect 3 was an overrated mess with a terrible ending.

owlish said...

Why NetHack and not Rogue?

No version of Fallout? X-com? Heroes of Might and Magic?

And if we're talking story, why not Alpha Centauri?

Joe said...

Any list missing "Half-Life" is bogus. "Far Cry" is another glaring omission.

Moreover, "Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic" was so boring, even my Star Wars loving teenage kids stop playing after a few hours.

It's also missing "Command & Conquer" which had a big influence on RTS games.

One again, this is a "games I liked" list, not anything resembling objectivity.

(My favorite game is "No One Lives Forever" followed by "World of Warcraft." I just finished playing through "Half Life 2" and its sequels yet again and am still impressed.)

Levi Starks said...

Well I couldn't have survived 80's without ROBOTRON. I mean who could get tire of saving the last human family on earth.

Christopher said...

Those not listed:

-Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
-Command and Conquer
-Silent Hill 2
-Final Fantasy 6 (3 if it's the original US numbering)

Ignorance is Bliss said...

For 80s arcade games: Gauntlet.

For 90s console: Beetle Adventure Racing.

For 00s console: Kingdom Hearts.

Russell said...

As Joe said. The list excludes Half-Life therefore its pretty useless. Half-life is regularly ranked in the top three or so of any all-time PC gamer lists (I know, not all these games are PC games). It includes Half-Life 2, which was a great game but not near the impact on how games are built that the original was.

George Grady said...

It's also missing Baldur's Gate I/II and Planescape: Torment.

Icepick said...

Leaving ROBOTRON and Gauntlet off the list is stupid. ("Warrior ... SHOT the food!") Gauntlet II was a helluva lot of fun, too, what with "IT" and reflecting shots! Nothing like a Warrior having those axes bounce of the walls. ("SHOTS now hurt other players!") The Gauntlet games were the greatest quarter eaters of all time.

As rehajm states, dropping Missile Command and Pole Position is wrong. No Centipede? The girls didn't JUST play Frogger and Ms. PAC-MAN! Speaking of which, leaving Ms. PAC-MAN off the list is just plain wrong.

And I can understand leaving off a couple of my favorites: TRON and Wizard of Wor weren't that important. But leaving off both DEFENDER and DEFENDER: STARGATE? These people are clueless!


Also, no Piranha! No Zoo Keeper! No Burger Time! No Reactor!

Tarzan said...

There will never again be a moment for me as pivotal as online gaming via dial-up modem with Quake 1. That game changed everything, and it was a blast to be in it at that time, before it all became the norm. It really blew my mind at the time to play in real time with others and then chat a bit (inside the game) and find that they were from Eastern Europe or something. Now it's all old hat, but at the time it really threw me for a loop in a good way.

I also love the game design of Quake 1. First game with monsters and sound fx that actually scared me! The Trent Reznor NIN tie-in was great, and I LOVE the weird sic-fi / goth design of the game, something I sorely missed in every version that game after. It devolved after that into a consistently bland on-line athletic event.

Quake 1, for me, is the best computer game of all time, even surpassing (if only by a hair) the mighty LoadRunner.

Don't even get me started on THAT!