Building on the memorably excellent space-combat mechanics of Star Wars: X-Wing, Totally Games’ Star Wars: TIE Fighter gave us our first real taste of the dark side – and we liked it.
Sitting in the seat of an Imperial starfighter and hearing the signature scream of the twin ion engines and deadly squawking of green blasters makes the story of fighting to keep Emperor Palpatine in power seem like a great idea.
For this, we had to figure out the best of the best.
So with that in mind, we put less emphasis on whether decades-old games can “hold up” against the modern AAA greats, and placed more importance on how incredible that gaming experience felt in its own era.After all, which is a greater achievement — a game that breaks significant new ground and feels a decade ahead of its time, or a game that comes out a generation later and finally manages to make some small improvements to the formula?There are few games I remember playing for the first time as vividly as Final Fantasy VII.After an opening cinematic that absolutely melted my brain, I watched slack-jawed as a soldier named Cloud and his Avalanche buddies leapt off a train and embarked on their grand adventure through Midgar and beyond.A few other considerations: Pokémon Go is as relevant for what happens outside of the game as what happens in it.
A game that can only be played by exploring the world around you, Pokémon Go made its mark by inspiring huge groups to explore together and established a sense of community that made it an absolute cultural phenomenon.Sure, in retrospect, better RPGs came before it (Chrono Trigger), and better RPGs have come after it (Persona 5), but the depth in which FFVII resonated with me at the time was unparalleled.Growing up primarily on consoles, Final Fantasy VII showed me just how vast, sprawling, and emotional video game adventures could be.I’ve played 40-minute games that felt like they lasted five, and once came very near to missing a redeye flight because I didn’t want to walk away from a hot Galaga streak in an airport arcade.You really do have to play Galaga on arcade hardware to get the full experience.Which made putting together this list of the Top 100 Video Games of All Time such a daunting, but ultimately rewarding experience.