The Greatest Games Of All-Time
Posted on Saturday, January 21 @ 14:48:06 PST by GR_Staff
The Greatest Games of All-Time (or The Quest for the A+)
With Game Revolution's transition from our notorious letter grades to the five-star system for reviews, we were fated to crash into one unfinished matter of business: What would we have given an A+?
Anyone who has referenced our grading system at the bottom of the site knows what we call an A+ title: "The Holy Grail of Gaming. The Perfect Game. We have never given one." Indeed, Game Revolution has never given an A+, which would coincide with the philosophy that there is truly no such thing as absolute perfection—somewhat depressing but certainly realistic.
But with this notable cloud over our heads, we posed the inevitable question and realized immediately that, in fact, we're just writing a feature on what we think is the greatest game of all-time. We've never written that feature, either. So why not kill two birds with one... you know what, that's mean.... how about killing two congressional bills with one Internet? Is that idiom worth an A+? (Maybe.) ~ Nick Tan
Anthony Severino - Final Fantasy III
There isn’t a perfect game, and there never will be. But there are a few games that do come close. Josh and Dave’s picks were among my three-way tie for what I’d consider as close to perfection as possible. The SNES seemed to be a breeding ground for greatness. The third title, and the one they didn’t already picked, edged out the rest as my one A+ game.
There’s a special place in my heart for Final Fantasy III (VI in Japan). It’s my childhood video game equivalent of the N64 kid. And to this day, I don’t think any game has pulled me in so deeply into the story or built as strong a bond as I did with Terra, Locke, Edgar, and the rest of the crew.
I cherish the hours I spent dungeon-crawling in search of Esper-filled Magicite. I’ll never forget the shock I felt when (*spoilers*, but yeah, this game's quite old already) Kefka killed Gestahl and brought the world to ruin. The entire game is filled with moments that not only shaped me as a gamer, but will also stay with me forever. And nothing yet has ever touched me the same way.
Nick Tan - The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
This is neither the first nor the last time that The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time will grace "best of" video game lists. Nearly every game reviewer gave Ocarina of Time their highest accolades in 1998, and according to GameRankings, for games with 20 or more reviews, it still has the highest average score of all-time.
Objectively, I could dissect the reasons for its timelessness: mythical structure, intricate yet whimsical level design, the innovative use of music, the Z-targeting system, and the 3D graphics that were a powerhouse in 1998. Ocarina of Time laid the groundwork for future 3D "open-world" titles, more immediately Majora's Mask but also Batman: Arkham City.
It's one of the rare games I've played to full completion, let alone three times through. It has an elegant sense of balance that escapes even today's best titles, whose designs can be just a bit too gimmicky, too overdone, or too instantly gratifying. It's, purely and simple, video game magic.
Daniel Bischoff - The Simpsons Arcade
I don't think any game deserves an A+ or whatever.... "The Perfect Score". It's elusive for a reason. Even 5 out of 5 stars doesn't mean "perfect" in my critical mind. Regardless, I think it's okay to call a game perfect based purely on how much fun you had. That's why I'm basing my decision purely on nostalgia.
You wouldn't think The Simpsons Arcade would be a "perfect" game, and it wasn't, but it was perfect for a 10-year-old with a little brother and a pocket full of quarters. Popping coin after coin in the machine to progress through each level as Bart and Homer never got old. As we neared the end of the game, other kids joined in. With four players in all, we powered through to the finale and defeated the boss to rescue Maggie.
Our parents were so pissed that we had them waiting at the pizza place for so long.
Jessica Vazquez - Bioshock
In order to explain why I would give Bioshock a perfect score, I have to first explain why I wouldn't give one to my favorite video game series, Mass Effect. The one thing Mass Effect lacks that Bioshock doesn't can be summed up in one word: consistency. Both games implement incredible storytelling, but Bioshock has been able to preserve core shooting mechanics. Mass Effect's drastic change in RPG elements and overall style between the original and the sequel were too stark.
Bioshock's ambiance carries over from one incarnation to the next. Its nightmarish underwater world stayed with me weeks after I had finished the game. Just the thought of lurking in the shadows trying to figure out how to evade a group of splicers as they engaged each other in morbid conversation was enough to make my skin crawl.
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