Self-reflection can be a powerful tool and knowledge about one’s own self often provides more knowledge about your own being than you may initially realize. I have tried to reflect more on my own self recently in order to find out who I really am. To that end, I decided to create a list of my top 10 favorite games of all time.
I looked back at every game that I played over the course of my short life and made a list. That list happened to be 27 games long and will continue to grow as I play more games. I was originally just going to post the list of 27 games, but I found it easy to parse that list down to just my top 10. These games just stood out to me and looking back at them, they actually make sense. I enjoy a certain type of game that I think is abundantly clear after looking at the list. I’ve listed the games chronologically, I do not think I could pick a favorite favorite from this list. Enjoy!
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (N64, 1998)
The game that started it all. I love this game. I have played through the game countless times, on countless systems, and watched speed runners dominate the game’s mechanics effortlessly. My favorite part is the titular ocarina, I still remember all of the songs and I love that the game forced you to memorize the songs in order to use them.
Pokémon Red/Blue (Game Boy, 1998)
I have enjoyed most every Pokémon game since the first releases, but nothing has quite lived up to the magic of the these games. I caught all 150 monsters and have played through the game multiple times. I always have a soft spot for Generation 1 Pokémon and Gold/Silver are also my favorites because of their return to Kanto.
Resident Evil (GameCube, 2002)
The atmosphere of this game scared me shitless the first time I put the disc in. But I kept coming back for more. I loved the graphics on the GameCube version, I have gone back and played the PlayStation original, but the Remake is much better in my opinion, I also enjoy the HD Remaster for the Xbox One. I can’t count the number of times that I have played through this game.
Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (Xbox, 2003)
This was such a great role playing game, with a story that I often think about. I wish that Star Wars: The Old Republic was better, I’ve put hundreds of hours into that MMO because I like this game so much. I’ve played through as Light Side and Dark Side and own about six copies of this game. I will play through it again soon.
Mass Effect (Xbox 360, 2007)
Even thought the combat and menus are a bit funky, the first game in the trilogy is still my favorite by far. The story sets up the world so brilliantly and the love connection with Liara T’Soni is a highlight moment in all of video games for me. I actually prefer the mechanics of this system because of the unlimited ammo cartridges. The growth of Commander Shepard during this game is a story beyond worthy of video games, and the main antagonist keeps the player motivated to continue the fight.
Bravely Default (3DS, 2014)
I am thankful that this game came to the United States. The battle systems is unlike anything I have ever played, but the story really makes this game stand out. The game gets some flack for forcing the player to replay the first act about five times, but that tedium adds to the story and the feeling of helplessness that the players perceive. Plus I am a sucker for a good time travel narrative. As a bonus the characters are adorable.
Alien: Isolation (Xbox One, 2014)
I enjoy a good space opera and the Alien universe is the perfect setting for a horror filled romp through a decaying space station. I enjoy this game so much because of the player growth that is experienced throughout the journey. You start with nothing, and end the game with a flame thrower, EMP grenades, and a shot gun as the game asks you to take on a nest of Xenomorphs. That progression makes the player connect with the game on an internal level, I need to play through the game again soon.
The Witcher III: Wild Hunt (Xbox One, 2015)
Everyone loves the Witcher III, but I love the Witcher III because of gwent. The combat is fine and the story is great. I enjoyed the world so much that I picked up some of the novels by Andrzej Sapkowski. Strangely I was often more motivated to find the next gwent card and play another round, than fight some more monsters. For most of the game I kept the difficulty low because I felt challenged enough and was still getting the hang of using the spells and countering. Eventually I got some better gear and weapons and the combat became a lot more fluid, but I kept coming back for some gwent.
Dark Souls III (Xbox One, 2016)
I never thought I would enjoy a Dark Souls game. I heard the stories about the most unforgiving game and the insane difficulty and I steered clear. Until Dark Souls III was on sale for $12 and I thought I should try it out. From the moment that I defeated the first boss until the final blow to the last boss, the game challenged me. The game also allowed me and my character to grow, I learned the combat, gained better weapons, and increased my health and stamina. Eventually difficult enemies did not seem too bad and big bosses fell to my blade. I would enjoy another play through using some different weapons.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Switch, 2017)
There is nothing like returning to a place unchanged to see how you yourself has changed. The Legend of Zelda has always remained one of my favorite games series, and I preordered the Switch based on the promises within this game. It delivered in spades. I love exploring the world of Hyrule and I love the puzzles within each shrine. I often laid in bed and thought, one more shrine again and again. I scoured the world for secrets and hunted down some of Link’s past memories in an open ended adventure that let me play at my own pace. The puzzles were challenging and rewarding, and fun. I recently downloaded the extra content and can’t wait to dive back in soon.
So there you have it. I really like role playing games that have a deep sense of character progression. I like leveling up my character through experience points, like Pokémon or Bravely Default, but even just gathering new items as in the Resident Evil and Alien: Isolation games fill that need. But really the sense of progression within the Zelda series sums up why I love games. I love being able to return to a starting area with a whole new arsenal and find new secrets. I also really like building a character through my own personal choices. It also helps when games have great music.
Games that I think Could be my favorites:
Shenmue 2 (Xbox, 2002)
Shadow of the Colossus (PS2, 2005)
Bloodborne (PS4, 2015)
Nier: Automata (PS4, 2017)
Monster Hunter: World (Xbox One, 2018)
Super Metroid (Super Nintendo, 1994)
Golden Sun (Game Boy Advance, 2001)
Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem (GameCube, 2002)
Mass Effect 3 (Xbox 360, 2012)
Resident Evil 7 (Xbox One, 2018)
Which game am I missing? Did I list any of your favorites?
Jake “prettyboyplaid” Fredericks