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Top 100 Video Games of All Time
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Position #10 (34,786) chart-peak (5)
Street Fighter IISNES, July 1992
Frequently referred to as the "grandfather" of the fighters, Street Fighter II remains quite strongly as the number one fighting game of all time. Released in July of '92, Street Fighter II would become the one game to judge all other fighters by. There was professional tournaments held and every arcade had the big screen system of Street Fighter II set up right inside the front doors. No fighting game has since matched the play control and configuration, character originality, game design, and balance that this game accomplished. On top of all that, it was the original, and generally, imitations can often make improvements over the design of the original, but in the case of Street Fighter II, no fighting game since has come close in even matching its design. Graphics and music are all that can be upgraded because the original was done absolutely perfect- as the single most skill-involved fighting game, and the best balance and design to match.



Position #9 (34,824) chart-peak (1)
Super Mario Bros.NES, October 1, 1985






The original. That's all that needs to be said, although there is so much more that should be. It is officially the highest selling video game of all time and almost single-handedly ended the video game crash of 1983. The storyline however, is often forgotten in a haze of statistics and the legacy that Mario has since created.

The story of this first side-scrolling platform adventure featuring the Italian plumber brothers begins in the once peaceful Mushroom Kingdom. But peace resides no more, as it has been invaded by the Koopas; a tribe of turtles known for their use of black magic. The inhabitants of the Mushroom Kingdom were turned into stones, bricks, and plants, and the Mushroom Kingdom fell into ruin. Princess Toadstool, the daughter of the Mushroom King, was the only one who could undo the black magic of the Koopas, but she had been captured by the Koopa King, Bowser. Mario hears about this and sets out on a quest to rescue Princess Toadstool, restore the Mushroom Kingdom and put an end to the evil Bowser. The story was nothing spectacular, but the originality of the design was a marvel. It featured 36 stages divided among 8 levels with varied qualities, such as underground sewers, castle dungeons, water worlds, dangerous and lengthy bridges, massive mushroom levels, and the regular outdoor levels through both night and day, each offering their own distinct aspect to the overall variety of the game. Through these often challenging levels there was many minimally challenging enemies including Goombas, Koopa Troopas and a few difficult ones like the Hammer Brothers. Regardless of all else, however, the innovation of Super Mario Bros. is the primary origin of every platform game available today. And if you need some motivation to play it again, there's always both minus worlds, the infinite life turtle-hop, the mushrooms that make you small, and the ability to get fireballs at that size. Glitches? Most of them, yes. But they all add to the thrill beyond the innovation that keeps this absolute classic alive so many years after its release.



Position #8 (35,205) chart-peak (7)
Mike Tyson's Punch OutNES, October 21, 1987
It was a genius design of character personality combined with tactical finger speed. The graphics were clear and detailed, the action was smooth and quick, the play control, music and sound effects were all perfect, and the formula was entirely original and absolutely flawless. With the help of Mario as a referee, your character, Little Mac, makes his journey up the boxing ranks, starting with the brutally easy Joe Glass and works his way all the way up to the simply brutal Mike Tyson, challenging the now-legendary opponents such as Piston Honda, Great Tiger, Bald Bull, Sandman, Machoman, and many more, each with their own fantastic personality.

In 1990, Punch-Out was re-released with Mr. Dream standing in place of Mike Tyson. A notable misconception is that the change was resultant Mike Tyson's legal troubles, when in fact it was simply an expired contract with the boxer. His legal disputes did not begin until after the game was re-released with Mr. Dream. Though it may not be the most influential and reproduced game design by other developers, the classic title retains impressive popularity on the game circuit today, despite its age of about 20 years. And as an added bonus, if you type in 800 422 2602 in the password section (Nintendo's old phone number), you get to listen to a busy signal - just as if you had dialed it on the phone.



Position #7 (35,643) chart peak (7)
Zelda: Ocarina of TimeN64, November 23, 1998


Being the first Nintendo 64 Zelda title, and boasting beautiful 3-D environments for the first time, this one made the Guinness Book of World Records when it sold more than 325,000 before it was released. This record would not be broken until the first Gamecube Zelda made it's debut. But Ocarina maintains its hold on notable awards, including game of the year by every major publication that year, and a perfect ranking (in some instances the first ever perfect ranking) by virtually all sources.

As the story goes, Hyrule was entering into a darker age. Clouds were gathered over the land brining evil armies to strike the most sacred and powerful artifact of all, the Triforce. The only remaining hope in the world of chaos fell in an elfin boy from the magical Kokiri Forest, and a young princess named Zelda. Regarded as the prequel to the Zelda series, Ocarina of Time reveals the genesis of the land of Hyrule, the origin of the Triforce, and follows the tale of the first adventure of Link and Zelda. The game was absolutely amazing. It was marketed to be an epic, and the game topped the marketing. That's a rare find in the modern industry. In today's times, games are marketed to be incredible and they end up satisfactory. This one on the other hand was marketed to be far beyond amazing, and the marketing fell short of living up to the actual game. It played in a vibrant 3-D world with full freedom of movement and a map more than suitable for hours of exploration. You must travel through dense forests, windy deserts, through raging rivers, up giant mountains, through the hills and open fields on horseback, dark and evil dungeons, all on your way to facing the ultimate evil face to face.



Position #6 (36,388) chart-peak (3)
Dragon Quest/WarriorNES, March 27, 1986





This is it, history's first ever home-console role playing game. This is the game that started the series that has since sold well over 40 million copies. By the third installment, Dragon Quest became the only game ever to be written into Japanese legislation, and the seventh installment became the highest selling role playing game in Japanese history as well as the the third highest selling video game overall. But the influence began with this title, with the first notable influence coming in the form of vocabulary. In the Japanese version, spell names were nonsensical, made up words, but the word chosen for the heal spell, Hoimi, soon became the official word meaning "heal" in Japan.

The influnce was not limited to Japan however, as Dragon Warrior (its U.S. counterpart) sparked the RPG craze that would eventually fuel the creation, and be the sole influence of every other RPG title to date, including both Pokemon and the Final Fantasy series.

Dragon Quest was a story of the magic of old with amazing depth to an enchanting story. It began in the land of Alefgard, where civilizations would rise and fall, but the ball of light ensured that prosperous times would never cease. Far off in the mountains of this land lived one man who discovered an ability to control the dragons. He began his sorcery over all beasts of the wild, building his army for his coming reign. Launched his attack on Tantegel Castle, he stole the ball of light and brought the fall of Alefgard. From then on he was known as the Dragonlord and was feared by all. But one man resisted. Erdrick would leave his countryside in quest to destroy the Dragonlord and bring peace back to Alefgard. Only stories were told of what actually happened, but years passed and the kingdom laid dormant. You come in years later, at the turn of the tide when the Dragonlord is witnessed again, his second coming more horrific than the first. He abducted Princess Gwaelin, the daughter of the king, and released his wrath across the land. Now you, the descendent of Erdrick, must follow in his footsteps, and set out in the new resistance.



Position #5 (36,410) chart-peak (4)
The Legend of ZeldaNES, July 17, 1987






Zelda was the first title in the series that has since sold more than 47 million copies and influenced the entire adventure genre. From the release of this first installment, there has existed an undying popularity craze with each subsequent release. For these reasons alongside many others, this particular title would not only become the single most classic adventure of all time, but it set virtually unattainable standards for other series' to compete against.

Link begins his quest in an age of chaos, when the mysterious Ganon's army has invaded Hyrule and stolen the Triforce of Power. Princess Zelda was afraid of the consequences of Ganon gaining rule, so she split the Triforce of Wisdom, hiding the pieces in hopes that they wouldn't be found by Ganon. The game follows the heroic adventure of a young man named Link, attempting to recover the eight pieces of the Triforce from the underworld labyrinths in hopes to save Zelda and defeat Ganon. The game featured an overhead view, which offered great exploration, incredible puzzles, varying environments, real time fighting, and numerous dangerous and tricky dungeons that end with the defeat of a wicked, yet always creative, original boss. Different weapons and items along the way assist your journey and there's a trick around every corner whether you can figure it out or not. And once Ganon has been pierced by the silver arrows, a whole new quest opens. In the new gaming age, adventure games have become quite common, but none more classic or original than Zelda.



Position #4 (40,202) chart-peak (3)
Dragon Quest/Warrior IVNES, February 11, 1990






Since the Dragon Quest series created history's first ever home-console RPG, it has since never lost it's position as the best roll playing game series of all time. This fourth installment (Dragon Warrior IV in the U.S.) is not only the highest scoring RPG of all time by votes, it's regarded as the best of all time by the majority of game designers and producers. In Japan on the day of its release, there was a national celebration held in its honor. Its influence went as far as every Japanese dictionary immediately printing revised copies to include the games new spell names as official new words. Although the U.S. has seen so few of these games, outside of the U.S., and in Japan especially, the series is responsible for eight of the nine most popular RPG games of all time, and some of the highest selling games in history. This final installment on the NES was the largest and most in-depth game of this series, and still, in those respects, hardly challenged today. The character development, as the game unfolded like a book through the chapters, the originality and innovation of the design, the environmental changes through day and night, incredible exploration through a colossal map and multiple original methods of travel, and the seemingly endless range of different weapons, helmets, armors, shields, and different items, make this game the best RPG of all time. Over fifteen years later, graphics have become amazing in the new era of games, but this rare title has yet to be matched on the depth, storyline, and gameplay, and in the most likely case, never will.



Position #3 (42,399) chart-peak (1)
Super Mario 64N64, September 29, 1996






More than 11 million sales doesn't quite encompass the importance of this title. As one of the most influential games of all time, it's difficult to give Mario 64 enough credit since so many games have since been created to resemble it. At the time it was released, the innovation in the graphical layout, character movement patterns, and control made it the most advanced game of its time by a great distance. Underneath all of this, there was one of the most classic games ever designed. Whether you were exploring outside the castle, exploring the hidden areas inside, or the hidden worlds behind the painting, surfing on a shell through grassy plains or snow-capped villages, or on your way to one of the epic battles with Bowser, it offered all the creativity of the previous Mario titles, with no technological limits. It was the first ever three dimensional Mario title, and worked basically as an extension to the original Super Mario Brothers, but this time with the technology driving the most fluent movement through the most beautiful and varied environments. The game leads Mario passed little tricks and secrets everywhere through an amazing adventure that comes in as the third greatest game of all time, and as of late, consistently attaining votes at a faster pace than the two titles ahead of it.



Position #2 (42,607) chart-peak (1)
Zelda: A Link to the PastSNES, April 13, 1992


The Power Charts in Nintendo Power magazine held this game at number one for all Super Nintendo titles for 67 consecutive months, and still remained strong in that slot when they cancelled the publication of the SNES chart. In those 67 months, it earned more votes than any other game on any system since Nintendo Power's first issue, and the votes here reflect that as well. Miyamoto's Zelda series has become the single most popular adventure games of all time, and the majority of those who have been a fan of them all, rank this Super Nintendo classic in as the pinnacle of the series. The storyline was deeper, the game play was much better, the freedom of exploration was excellent through both the light and dark worlds, the graphical environments were amazing for the time, and the broad range of weapons and items Link could utilize made this the number one adventure game of all to date, and the number two game of all time.



Position #1 (43,192) chart-peak (1)
NES, February 12, 1990






Another one of Shigeru Miyamoto's numerous titles in this list made February of 1990 a giant month. The votes prove that, as they have held Super Mario Brothers 3 in the number one slot as the best game of all time for more than seven consecutive years now. This original NES classic was the highest selling "sold-seperately" game on any system in history, selling over 18 million copies. But sales doesn't say everything. A full length major motion picture staring Fred Savage and Christian Slater might say a little more about the impact of this game. Super Mario Bros. 3 was first unveiled in this 1989 blockbuster, The Wizard, with never before seen game play. The movie spent a good length of time showing previews of the game and a couple of now-classic little tricks- the flute, etc. At its release, the game proved to be much more than the product of hype. It offered a linear map with some directional variation for players to have more variety in completing levels. Variety also proved to be key in the changing environments of each individual world. From endless desert to endless water, and even a land where everything but Mario is giant, this game captured it all. Mario is now a more well-known figure than Mickey Mouse, and few would argue that Super Mario Bros. 3 was one of the most unique, original, and influential games ever created, and nearly untouchable in the position of the greatest game in history.