10 Games You Have to Play Before The World Ends

Depending on who you believe you may have anywhere form only a few hours left to a dozen or so years before this thing we know as existence simply goes poof.  When facing Armageddon it is important to ensure that you have experienced as much as possible, that is why we bring to you this completely thrown together at the last minute list of 10 games you have to play before the world ends.  Do note, this isn’t a top ten, as that is pretty much impossible and far too difficult to come up with on such sort notice, consider this more a guideline on how to spend your last few virtual hours.

So in no particular order, here are ten games you have to play before the world ends:
Very few games have taken the world by storm like Tetris has.  While there are various incarnations and knock-offs of the now classic formula out there, the original (in the US anyway) version for the original GameBoy remains one of the best.  Tetris single handedly helped to launch the hand-held gaming industry and is one of the first games to truly bring in the “casual” gaming crowd.  I can count the number of video games my mom has played on one finger, and that game is Tetris.

Halo (Series):
As a series, Halo helped to launch a console and redefined what an FPS would be for years to come. While classics such as Goldeneye 007 and Perfect Dark laid the groundwork, Halo took what used to be the exceptions in console gaming and made them the rule. Each iteration of the franchise continued the success of the previous efforts and even helped to make Xbox Live a household name and played a major part in shaping the modern online gaming experience. The games are pretty good too.

Super Mario Brothers 3:
This should come as no big surprise.  Super Mario Brothers 3 is basically the pinnacle of gaming on the NES and one of, if not the greatest game to come out of the era.  It pushed the boundaries of what a game could do visually at the time, and most importantly, was, and still is one of the best platforming experiences in gaming.  If you haven’t yet experienced the awesomeness that is Super Mario Brothers 3, don’t wait for a tomorrow that may not come.

Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time:
Ocarina of Time may not seem incredibly impressive by today’s standards, but it was undoubtedly the jewel of the Nintendo 64 era of gaming.  Maddeningly difficult puzzles and more nooks and crannies than any cartridge-based game should rightfully have are just some of aspects that make Ocarina of Time one of the best gaming experiences of all time.  There is a good reason why essentially every Nintendo system since the N64 has had some version of Ocarina of Time added to its library.

Grand Theft Auto III:
The term “Sandbox” meant a wooden box full of sand, buried action figures and concerning wet spots in your local park for most people in the days before GTA III.  The first game to really give gamers the feeling that they could do whatever they wanted opened the floodgates for a Machiavellian experience many copies tried but never truly replicated since.  Coming out of an era that had been dominated by Mario, Ratchet & Clank and Lara Croft among others, GTA III was violent, gritty and a shock to our senses in more ways than one.  Gaming grew up, and for some reason really liked killing hookers; and it all started here.

Super Mario 64:
I purposely set out to not allow too many games with Mario in the title make it onto this list, but Nintendo has made it exceedingly difficult to do so.  Super Mario 64 may be the only Mario game to actually outshine Mario Brothers 3, and managed to maintain its’ title as one of the best games on the Nintendo 64 despite having actually launched with the system.  Mario’s first adventure in 3D was on an epic scale, and what is more important, it was an amazingly good time that I must of played through at least a half dozen times.

Warcraft II/Starcraft:
I’ve decided to make what will likely be a controversial decision and group both Warcraft II and Starcraft together.  Blizzard redefined the RTS game with Warcraft II and created a gaming sensation that would only be topped by their next release, Starcraft.  Combined, the two games make for some of the best RTS experiences available anywhere, a fact still true today.  For the WoW players out there, and even those who are just curious, this is where your adventure really started.  Embrace your roots and give these classic RTS campaigns a look.

Pokemon Blue/Red:
For several years there was very little bigger than Pokemon.  The franchise took the youth of the world by storm, and managed to capture the interest of quite a few of the world’s adults in the process. The original Pokemon games for the GameBoy Color started a phenomenon that still continues to outsell other games at market over a decade later.  Solid gameplay, memorable characters and an overwhelming need to not only catch em’ all but to train them to be unstoppable killing machines made this game like crack in the hands of children (and many adults) everywhere.

Star Wars: Rouge Squadron (Series):
This is a personal one for me, and one I think many list would likely skip over.  While the original Rogue Squadron on N64 obviously started it all and had arguably the best storyline, the 2nd game, released on GameCube had the best combination of graphics and story.  The third was largely forgettable with too much focus on getting out of the ships for extended periods of time but still had its’ moments.  Whatever game in the series you choose though, Rouge Squadron not only represents one of the best series in the significantly underutilized genre of spaceship combat, it gave us all the ability to finally feel like we were playing a Star Wars movie.  Plus, we got to fly an X-Wing, which pretty much every adolescent boy who has seen Star Wars wants to do.

Mario Kart 64:
The last game on our list once again contains the word Mario in the title and comes from Nintendo.  Super Mario Kart may have started it, but in my humble opinion Mario Kart 64 was and still is the example by which all kart racers should and often do measure themselves by.  For a game to still be so much fun so many years after it was released is a true testament to its’ quality.  Easy to pickup, whether you are an avid gamer or not, and loads of fun whether playing by yourself or with a group of friends, Mario Kart is definitely one game you need to experience before the world slips on a banana and spirals out of control.

Agree? Disagree? Tell us what games would make your list in the comments below!

  • It saddens me that Starfox 64 would not make this list. How else will people know to barrel roll?

    • I’m also kicking myself for the lack of Portal. Things happen when you try to hurry up and make a list before the end of the world.

  • I am happy to say that I played most on this list.
    Still, I feel it is lacking on the fighting game/ j rpg side.
    Though they are not the best, they are defly worth trying before Armageddon ^^

  • I’ve played majority of those except for maybe three of them. Well since we didn’t end yet people should also try out Chrono Trigger, BioShock, Borderlands and Fallout series. Also yes they’re either about the world ending or after the end there’s a bunch more but you can find them out by yourselves. 😛

  • I can say I played all of that except for Zelda. Never got into that series.

    What you’re missing is some Fallout. The second one, to be specific. And MechWarrior 2 Mercenaries. And possibly Black & White, to help you understand why gods destroy their creations. 😀

  • The world can’t end until Yu Suzuki finishes the Shenmue series. And the Dreamcast 2 is released.

    Conversely, the world will definitely end if there’s ever a sequel to Night Trap (even though I desperately want one).

  • Kemera Vollrath

    Love me some tetris

  • Pingback: Backlog Quest II: Day 28 – Kung Fu Panda 2 (Kinect) – Wax off

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