1.) Sonic the Hedgehog (Sega) – Playing the first game now evokes both warm nostalgia and saddened wonderment. The first game in the series, though not as refined as part 2 or the CD version, was this wonderful game full of bright colors, catchy J-Pop music and fast speed. And really, that’s all Sonic ever needs to be. When he starts to deviate from that, he loses his charm, but his first adventure is what really pushed the Genesis into the spotlight, and still remains an incredibly fun game. I just wish Sega had taken better care of their lead mascot.

2.) Super Metroid (Nintendo) – Quite arguably, the greatest side-scrolling adventure ever created. The game is a true masterpiece of graphics, sound, control, exploration and mood. There’s so much to like about this game, not to mention the surprise ending and just the utter “cool” factor of the final battle. One of Nintendo’s few games not to get released 1,000 times by now, this is one I’ll be eagerly waiting for when it hits the Virtual Console.

3.) Leisure Suit Larry in the Land of the Lounge Lizards
(Sierra) – The first “adult” game I ever played, back at a tender young age when I was innocent, and not ready for such harshness of life’s seedier lessons. Ha. Goofy, filled with cheesy stereotypes and puns, and a diverse language system that could understand the best of a young gamer’s profanity level, the game also boasted a funny story, a bit of gambling, and a neat little Vegas-esque world to explore. It was a far cry from the arcade-style games of the time on my home consoles, and made owning an Apple IIc just that much cooler when friends stopped by for all-night gaming sessions.

4.) Super Star Wars (Lucasarts) – One of the best movie to game ports of the 16-bit era, Super Star Wars put players in control of Luke, Han and Chewbacca in multiple scenes from the movie, with all the sound effects and music. For it’s time, it was a really great game, and one of the best uses of the Star Wars license. Of course, it was also a fairly difficult game that allows for limited continues. I had played the NES version a year or so prior to this version, and the NES version (even the wacky Japanese version of the game) simply doesn’t compare.

5.) Nintendogs (Nintendo) – Unless you hate animals, or have a heart of stone, there’s a lot to like about this virtual pet simulator. The little dogs retain all of their cute puppy charm, training is interactive, allowing users to voice their commands for training, there’s contests to enter, frisbees and balls to throw, and even little hats and accessories to find. When I first played the game, the gameplay became quickly intuitive, and it’s near impossible not to become attached to your little furry friend as you care for it. It works as a DS game simply because it is so different, and can be taken with you on the go.

I would have written a little more tonight, but I’m tired, and about ready for “Sleep Land”. Still, all 5 games are ones I’d recommend for some fun play time. who knows what will be referenced next?

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Filed under: favorite games