Alright! Time to get this thing kicked off! If you missed my introduction to this list, be sure to click here and check that out! These first ten games are a bit odd – in fact I think a lot of games on my honorable mention list probably deserve these spots more. But what I wanted to do here was go for some fun and quirky games that were a little more off the beaten path. I think I accomplished that.
100. Blades of Steel (NES)
I’m kicking off the list with this NES classic. Because FUN. It’s simple and accessible, with addictive gameplay and very satisfying matches. It’s everything you could want an 8-bit sports game to be. Those fight scenes though… Ok fine – I’ll concede that there are definitely better games than this which I left out. But I wanted this one to be number 100, so deal with it.
99. Duck Hunt (NES)
How can this game NOT be on a list?! Talk about first person shooters… Everything about this game is fun. From the maddening clay shooter, to the love/hate relationship we all had with that dog.
98. Counter Strike (PC)
I’m not particularly fond of most FPS (first person shooter) games. I find that the gameplay gets old after a relatively short time, as it tends to be pretty repetitive. As I mentioned before, this especially holds true for games that are exclusively multiplayer – which Counter Strike is. But this was just such a quality game. Well done controls, fun scenarios, and really accessible gameplay make it one of the few FPS games on my list. I didn’t go to a lot of LAN parties, but when I did we played Counter Strike. (Shout outs to Half Life.)
97. 1080 Snowboarding (N64)
This is the game that put action sports games on the map – at least for me. This game had really interesting courses, fun gameplay, unique characters, and a pretty good amount of things to do and complete. It introduced the concept of snowboarding to me, as well as the basics of gameplay elements that I would eventually come to enjoy greatly in the Tony Hawk series.
96. Mortal Kombat 2 (SNES/GameBoy)
One of the greatest fighting games ever made, and, in my opinion, the best of the Mortal Kombat series. It took the formula developed in MK1 and amped it up to another level. With more (and more interesting) characters, more levels, and more fatalities, this game was a ton of fun. Personally, I played the Game Boy version, and I played it into the ground. But the SNES and arcade versions were a lot of fun as well. Later games started to feel more repetitive, and they certainly started to get too gruesome for my tastes. MK2 was just plain fun. Street Fighter 2 could have (should have?) easily held this spot on the list, but I went ahead and gave Mortal Kombat the nod.
95. Angry Birds (Mobile)
I know, I know – these are just “casual” games, so they really shouldn’t be on here, right? That would be true if they weren’t such darn good games. They might be tremendously accessible and easy to play – but to actually get through all the levels is quite a challenge. Beyond that, they’re insanely difficult and require a great deal of skill if you’re going for three stars on every level. I don’t like the direction Rovio has taken the franchise – adding way too many power ups and DLC options. And now there’s just too much content – they’re milking this cash cow for all it’s worth. But it started out as pretty fun and awesome. I am particularly fond of the Star Wars versions.
94. Oregon Trail (Apple II)
Such good memories with this game. The fact that they let us play it AT SCHOOL just took it to a whole new level. While there have been plenty of iterations of this game, I’m talking about the original on early 90s Macs. While the strategy and decision-making components were certainly fun, the hunting and hilarious deaths were arguably the best. Few things were as satisfying to 8-year old me as making it all the way to Oregon.
93. Wii Sports (Wii)
The game that really put the Wii on the map, and made gaming an almost mainstream thing to do. A lot of self-professed “hardcore” gamers have a problem with it because of its “casual” nature, but I don’t buy that. It’s just plain fun! The obvious party game/multiplayer aspects aside, it actually is a very challenging and entertaining game. Trying to get top scores in each category of each event can lead to quite a bit of game play. It was so unique and memorable that there just had to be a place for it on this list.
92. Splatoon (Wii U)
One of the best games on Wii U and one of Nintendo’s best new properties in years. Splatoon is a unique and edgy shooter with loveable characters and excellent gameplay. I personally haven’t gotten super invested in the turf war component of this game, but the little bit I have played is quite fun. It’s just very satisfying to see that ink splashing everywhere! It hits all the positive feedback buttons when you see your color of ink covering your opponents’. With the exception of the excellent final boss, there’s nothing super memorable about the campaign, but it’s still a very fun playthrough all the same.
91. Star Wars: Episode I – Racer (N64)
Pretty fun little racing game. The game came out at a time when the air was abuzz with all the excitement of the Star Wars prequels (which I like! don’t hate! ), and this game really helped you feel immersed in that world- like you were really on the podracing circuit! All the basic racing elements are there, and the tracks are very unique and a lot of fun. Plenty of fun extras to collect as well.
I’ll leave you with a tease of the next game… but you’ll have to wait until tomorrow to find out why!
Star Wars: Rebellion (PC)
Reminder: I’ve considered things like gameplay, replay value, timelessness, story, unique qualities, cultural impact, personal impact, and overall just how much fun a game is. Except for the times when I don’t consider them at all. I may even think a lower-rated game is “better” than one higher than it, or even more fun. Ultimately, the criteria are entirely my own. I make the decisions, I make the ratings, and I don’t claim to be either fair or logical in any of this.