Occasionally, when I get the chance, I do a lot of gaming. I don’t do as much as I did back then, but I’m still pretty learned on video game knowledge. I thought about doing one of these Top # things for a while, so I figured, “why the heck not?”
Let’s start with number 20.
20. Lego Games
I remember when I was eight, and these friends of mine decided to loan me their copy of the first Lego Star Wars game for PS2. I couldn’t stop playing it. Pretty soon, I got the second, but that’s pretty much where I stopped. I don’t know why, but I haven’t gotten a Lego game since then. I’ve tried out Lego Batman 2, and I think it’s probably my favorite.
The best thing about these Lego games is the fact that it’s best with two people. The gags and jokes are always funnier with a friend. Recently, they started adding new game mechanics, like voice acting in Lego Batman 2, and GTA style open world rampaging in Lego City: Undercover.
First: Lego Island (PC, 1997)
Latest: Lego Marvel Super Heroes (PC, DS, 3DS, Wii U, Xbox 360, PS3, Vita, 2013)
Highest Rated: Lego Harry Potter: Years 1-4 (iOS, 2010, 87%)
Bestselling: Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga (Wii, 2007, 5.07 mil)
Personal Favorite: Lego Batman 2: DC Superheroes (PC, PS3, Vita, 3DS, Wii, DS, 360, Wii U, 2012)
19. Ace Attorney
Honestly, what’s more fun than gathering evidence to solve a crime while screaming, “OBJECTION!!”? That pretty much summarizes the whole point of the Ace Attorney series. You mainly play as Phoenix Wright, but there has also been spin-offs like Miles Edgeworth. It feels right at home on a portable, with touch controls for us Americans. Yes, just about the whole series was released on the GBA in Japan first, but now that we have our hands on it, we are happy to play it.
First: Gyakuten Saiban (Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney) (GBA, DS, PC, Mobile, Wiiware, iOS, 2001)
Latest: Professor Layton vs. Ace Attorney (3DS, 2012)
Highest Rated: Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney (DS, 2005, 81%)
Bestselling: Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney (DS, 2007, 0.9 mil)
Personal Favorite: Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney (DS, 2005)
Automatically a classic, this puzzle game series is easily one of the most recognizable games of all time. Who knew that lining up falling blocks could be fun? It’d be stupid not to see this series on the list.
First: Tetris (E60, 1984)
Latest: Tetris Axis (3DS, 2011)
Highest Rated: Tetris Party (WiiWare, 2008, 86%)
Bestselling: Tetris (GB, 1989, 30.25 mil)
Personal Favorite: Tetris (GB, 1989)
17. Crash Bandicoot
This franchise is the whole reason I even got into gaming. One Christmas, I got a PS2 with the game, “Crash Bandicoot: The Wrath of Cortex”. It is still one of my personal classics, and I love pulling it out every once in a while. The blend of platforming, wackiness, and absurdity make this one of my personal favorites.
First: Crash Bandicoot (PSX, PSN, 1996)
Latest: Crash Bandicoot Nitro Kart 2 (iOS, 2010)
Highest Rated: Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped (PSX, PSN, 1998, 91%)
Bestselling: Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back (PSX, PSN, 1997, 7.58 mil)
Personal Favorite: Crash Bandicoot: The Wrath of Cortex (PS2, GCN, Xbox, 2001)
Face it. It’s a pink ball of fluff. You can’t get any better than that. One of Nintendo’s classic platformer series, and what made it so special was the fact that Kirby could change into any enemy that he gobbled up. Also, it was probably the fact that he could eat stuff in the first place that drew in many gamers to it’s cutesy demeanor.
First: Kirby’s Dream Land (GB, 3DSVC, 1992)
Latest: Kirby’s Dream Collection (Wii, 2012)
Highest Rated: Kirby’s Epic Yarn (Wii, 2010, 86%)
Bestselling: Kirby’s Dream Land (GB, 3DSVC, 1992, 5.13 mil)
Personal Favorite: Kirby’s Adventure (NES, VC, eShop, 1993)
15. Star Fox
This series has a fantastic past. The first game used a 3D engine so you could move around in a 3D environment rather than a side scrolling 2D approach. Then the next game had voice acting…and it was in perfect American English! Yeah, it’s had a couple of bumps, like Adventures and Assault, but they’re still great games in their own rights, just not as Star Fox games. Still, whether you’re commanding an Arwing, or blasting away on foot, Star Fox has brought us many great gaming memories.
First: Star Fox (SNES, 1993)
Latest: Star Fox 64 3D (3DS, 2011)
Highest Rated: Star Fox 64 (N64, iQ, VC, 1997, 88%)
Bestselling: Star Fox 64 (N64, iQ, VC, 1997, 4.03 mil)
Personal Favorite: Star Fox Assault (GCN, 2005)
One of gamings most suspenseful offerings, the first game introduced the ability to move left. It provided an open world for you to explore, but it still made a haunting sense of loneliness. Imagine our surprise when we found out that all along, Samus, the main hero, was female! This has gone on to other Metroid games, and Prime is still one of my favorite FPS’s ever.
First: Metroid (FCDS, NES, GBA, VC, 1986)
Latest: Metroid: Other M (Wii, 2010)
Highest Rated: Metroid Prime (GCN, Wii, 2002, 97%)
Bestselling: Metroid Prime (GCN, Wii, 2002, 2.82 mil)
Personal Favorite: Metroid Prime Trilogy (Wii, 2009)
Everyone can agree that the first Spyro games were the best. It was simple, you had a purple dragon going on exciting adventures, and maintained a sense of charm and wit. Then came the Legend of Spyro. Although it’s definitely not the best games in the series, they’re ok (except for the Eternal Night, that one was awful). Then we got a ‘reboot’ fairly recently, but turns out it was just a bootleg to promote sales to the Skylanders. Despite the series’ flaws, we all still love Spyro for who he is.
First: Spyro the Dragon (PSX, PSN, 1998)
Latest: Skylanders: Swap Force (PS3, 360, Wii U, PC, 2013)
Highest Rated: Spyro: Year of the Dragon (PSX, PSN, 2000, 91%)
Bestselling: Spyro: Year of the Dragon (PSX, PSN, 2000, 3.71 mil)
Personal Favorite: Spyro: A Hero’s Tail (PS2, Xbox, GCN, 2004)
12. Team Ico Projects
Yes, this isn’t necessarily a ‘franchise’, but we can consider Ico and Shadow of the Colossus as the same series. With the imminent upcoming release of The Last Guardian, it’s great to look back on gamings most majestic team projects. It’s amazing when you realize that these seemingly HD games ran on little old PS2. Although the franchise doesn’t have the best sales, it is most definitely one of gaming’s favorites.
First: Ico (PS2, PS3, 2001)
Latest: The Last Guardian (PS3, TBA)
Highest Rated: Ico and Shadow of the Colossus Collection (PS3, 2011, 92%)
Bestselling: Shadow of the Colossus (PS2, PS3, 2005, 1.41 mil)
Personal Favorite: Shadow of the Colossus (PS2, PS3, 2005)
11. Mega Man
The Blue Bomber hasn’t been seen since Mega Man 10, except in fan-made PC spinoff, Street Fighter X Mega Man. Back then, Mega Man used to have game after game after game coming out, but now, he’s a little quiet. This little shooter is one of gaming’s favorite series, as it combines platforming, shooting, and brutal difficulty to give us a surprising after-product of fun. We love Mega Man. Please bring him back, Capcom.
First: Mega Man (NES, PSX, Mobile, VC, PSN, Android, PSP, 1987)
Latest: Street Fighter X Mega Man (PC, 2012)
Highest Rated: Mega Man 9 (WiiWare, PSN, XBLA, Mobile, 2008, 83%)
Bestselling: Mega Man 2 (NES, PSX, Mobile, VC, iOS, PSN, 1988, 1.51 mil)
Personal Favorite: Mega Man 2 (NES, PSX, Mobile, VC, iOS, PSN, 1988)
10. Sonic the Hedgehog
It’s hard not to love the Blue Blur. Yeah, his haughtiness can be cringe-worthy at some points, but we still love him, because he’s just cool. Plus, he can run pretty fast, which is why we love his games so much. We love speeding down slopes, jumping around all over the place in a crazy vertigo. Yeah, there are some dips, but thanks to Sonic Generations, we’re ready to love him again.
First: Sonic the Hedgehog (GNS, iPod, iOS, Java, VC, GBA, XBLA, PSN, 1991)
Latest: Sonic Dash (iOS, 2013)
Highest Rated: Sonic CD (SCD, PC, GCN, PS2, XBLA, PSN, iOS, Android, WP, 1993, 93%)
Bestselling: Sonic the Hedgehog (Mobile) (iOS, Android, WP, 2009, 8 mil)
Personal Favorite: Sonic Generations (PS3, PSN, 360, PC, 3DS, 2011)
9. Kingdom Hearts
We were skeptical at first at the announcement of a Disney-Final Fantasy crossover, but 10 years later, we are still impressed. With fantastic Action-RPG elements, this game is one of our favorite RPG’s ever, with it’s interesting plot-line and premise. It’s plot can be pretty confusing, but that’s just another reason to get started with the first game.
First: Kingdom Hearts (PS2, PS3, 2002)
Latest: Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 Remix (PS3, 2013)
Highest Rated: Kingdom Hearts II (PS2, 2005, 87%)
Bestselling: Kingdom Hearts (PS2, PS3, 2002, 4.68 mil)
Personal Favorite: Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance (3DS, 2011)
8. Super Smash Bros.
Another game that we were skeptical about. A giant fighting game crossover with all of Nintendo’s franchises? Impossible. However, we love it as our favorite fighting game of all time, with everybody flying all over the place, crazy finishing moves, and just plain mashing up characters together. This is a Nintendo dream come true.
First: Super Smash Bros. (N64, iQ, VC, 1999)
Latest: Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii, 2008)
Highest Rated: Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii, 2008, 93%)
Bestselling: Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii, 2008, 10.79 mil)
Personal Favorite: Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii, 2008)
7. Final Fantasy
One of gaming’s most famous success stories, the first Final Fantasy was supposed to be Square’s last game. However, due to fantastic sales, they made a Final Fantasy II, followed by III, IV, V, VI, and so on. Today, we are on number XIV!! Final Fantasy is now Square Enix’s iconic franchise, and we have lots of main installments, as well as uncountable spinoffs. And each one has a totally different and unique story! Sure, it’s made it’s mistakes, (XIII endless hallway anyone?) but we shall always have this franchise in our hearts.
First: Final Fantasy (NES, MSX2, WSC, PSX, GBA, Mobile, PSP, VC, PSN, iOS, WP, Android, 1987)
Latest: Final Fantasy V (iOS, Android, 2013)
Highest Rated: Final Fantasy IX (PSX, PSN, 2000, 94%)
Bestselling: Final Fantasy VII (PSX, PC, PSN, 1997, 10 mil)
Personal Favorite: Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift (DS, 2007)
Even though it only has two installments, this franchise is one of the most perfect RPG franchises of all time. Starting with Chrono Trigger, we have a fantastic tale of friendship and time travel, and it continued with Chrono Cross. If we told you how Chrono Trigger ties into Chrono Cross, we would be providing spoilers. That’s just how fantastic it is. Just take my word for it, this game series is awesome.
First: Chrono Trigger (SNES, PSX, DS, Mobile, VC, PSN, iOS, Android, 1995)
Latest: Chrono Cross (PSX, PSN, 1999)
Highest Rated: Chrono Cross (PSX, PSN, 1999, 94%)
Bestselling: Chrono Trigger (SNES, PSX, DS, Mobile, VC, PSN, iOS, Android, 1995, 2.65 mil)
Personal Favorite: Chrono Trigger (SNES, PSX, DS, Mobile, VC, PSN, iOS, Android, 1995)
5. Sly Cooper
This is probably fanboyism speaking here, but Sly Cooper is amazing. Stealth and platforming blended together, along with a Saturday morning cartoon story, art, and feel, it blends together to make a smooth and satisfying formula. Sly Cooper, the character is very thick, charming, funny, witty, and deep, all at the same time. It’s ridiculous. If you’re looking for a platformer other than Mario, this is where you should be heading.
First: Sly Cooper and the Thievious Raccoonus (PS2, 2002)
Latest: Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time (PS3, Vita, 2013)
Highest Rated: Sly 2: Band of Thieves (PS2, 2004, 88%)
Bestselling: Sly Cooper and the Thievious Raccoonus (PS2, 2002, 1 mil)
Personal Favorite: Sly 2: Band of Thieves (PS2, 2004)
The very definition of a modern classic, Portal uses an interesting game mechanic, you shoot two portals, and walk through one, and come out the other, and made it unique. Add in twisted humor, a surprisingly deep plotline, and great graphics and puzzles, and you have a recipe for success.
First: Portal (PC, Xbox 360, PS3, 2007)
Latest: Portal 2 (PC, Xbox 360, PS3, 2011)
Highest Rated: Portal 2 (PC, Xbox 360, PS3, 2011, 95%)
Bestselling: Portal 2 (PC, Xbox 360, PS3, 2011, 1.1 mil)
Personal Favorite: Portal 2 (PC, Xbox 360, PS3, 2011)
3. The Legend of Zelda
It’s hard to mess up Zelda. You have a character who doesn’t speak, but embarks on epic quests, with dungeons to conquer, and great plotlines. Lots of items, and unique game mechanics make the Zelda series one of the best series of all time.
First: The Legend of Zelda (NES, 1986)
Latest: The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword (Wii, 2011)
Highest Rated: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (N64, 1998, 99%)
Bestselling: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (N64, 1998, 7.6 mil)
Personal Favorite: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (N64, 1998, 7.6 mil)
2. Fire Emblem
I can’t stop playing Fire Emblem. I just can’t. It’s impossible. It’s that good. Strategy RPG has never been better, with interesting plotlines, lots of content, and it makes you think. Plus, it’s fun to see your army raiding the opposing army. The most recent offering, Awakening, has some of the best cutscenes that I’ve ever seen from Nintendo. They are magnificently gorgeous, as is the rest of the game, nay, the rest of the series.
First: Fire Emblem: Ankoku Ryū to Hikari no Tsurugi (FC, VC, 1990)
Latest: Fire Emblem: Awakening (3DS, 2012)
Highest Rated: Fire Emblem: Awakening (3DS, 2012, 91%)
Bestselling: Fire Emblem (GBA, 2003, .97 mil)
Personal Favorite: Fire Emblem: Awakening (3DS, 2012)
This choice is a no-brainer. Ever since his appearance in Donkey Kong, we all loved him, as did Nintendo, of which he is now their mascot. Mario is the classic of all classics. There are just too many games of him to count. Everybody knows him. We all do. There’s no mistaking the fact that he is number one in gaming.
First: Donkey Kong (Arcade, 1981)
Latest: New Super Mario Bros. U (Wii U, 2012)
Highest Rated: Super Mario Galaxy 2 (Wii, 2010, 97%)
Bestselling: Super Mario Bros. (NES, 1985, 40.24 mil)
Personal Favorite: Super Mario 3D Land (3DS, 2011)
That’s pretty much all I have to say about my favorite gaming franchises. Notice that I didn’t put anything like Halo, Half-Life, or Call of Duty. I haven’t played those games, and I just don’t plan to.
Now which of these franchises is your favorite? Sound off in the comments below!