Yeah, I chose Paperboy as the header image for this post and you’re just going to have to deal with it. Best of lists are bound to attract controversy so prepare yourself to have some opinions on Time Magazine’s list of the 100 best video games.
Time’s Techland compiled the list, which for some reason, is organized not from 1-100 but by the decade the games were released. Perhaps it was an attempt to limit the number of complaints that one game should have been ranked higher than another.
Regardless, in the 1970s, they’ve of course listed Pong. They write, “When it was released in 1972, Pong wasn’t the first video game. Depending on how you write the rules, there might have been as many as a dozen before it. But it was the first one to become wildly popular and commercially successful, which is its own kind of glory.”
The 80s lists games like Pac-Man, Donkey Kong, Tetris, The Legend of Zelda, Metroid, and Super Mario Bros.
This is the game that defined so much of what we’ve been doing in games since its arrival on the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1985: coin-collecting, hidden power-ups that rendered Mario bigger and more powerful or awarded abilities like fireball-tossing or invincibility, jumping on enemies to defeat them, battling end-level “bosses,” using “warp” zones to shortcut between levels and jamming to musical themes now as recognizable as any top 10 pop tune.
The next Mario game to make the list was in the 90s with Super Mario 64. It shares the decade’s accolaids along with Street Fighter II, Sonic the Hedgehog, Resident Evil (the only one of that series on the list), Tomb Raider, Metal Gear Solid, and more.
Once we hit the 2000s, things like Angry Birds come into play. They write, “It’s the ultimate modern-day casual game series. Hand your smartphone to a toddler with Angry Birds loaded up and watch what happens.” Indie game Braid also made the cut.
Rock Band, Portal, BioShock, Katmari Damacy, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, The Sims, World of Warcraft, and Guitar Hero are just a few of the other video games from the 2000s. “Portal came about just as video game success and meta-awareness hit significant crests. Big money was being made, big ambitions yielded complex worlds and the big ideas about where the medium was going hung heavy in the air,” they write. “So it surprised everyone that 2007′s best game was a small gem of minimalism built around a singular, brilliantly executed mechanic.”
Just two from the 2010s made the cut: Mass Effect 3 and Batman: Arkham City.
So, what do you think of their choices? Check out the entire list and let us know if you think there are any glaring omissions. For me, it’s Wizards and Warriors or Golden Axe.