Series Ranked: Super Mario Bros

This past Friday marked the release of the amazing looking Super Mario Odyssey for the Nintendo Switch, which is now one of the highest rated games of all time, joining The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.

To celebrate this exciting occasion, I am going to rank all of the mainline Super Mario games. There are far too many spin offs to include all of them. Unfortunately, this means RPG, the original Mario Bros, Mario Maker and Yoshi’s Island will not be included in this list, but oh well.

I will rank them from worst to best.

#17

Super Mario Land

Game Boy, 1989

Times Beaten-1

The very first handheld Mario game turned out to be a very short adventure, taking no longer than 20 minutes to beat. It is still a fun little game however.

 

#16

Super Mario Bros: The Lost Levels

Famicom, 1986 / SNES 1993

Times Beaten-0

Originally called Super Mario Bros 2, it was somehow never released outside of Japan. Most people didn’t play it until it was called the “Lost Levels” which was added in Super Mario All-Stars several years later. It is very similar to it’s prequel and takes off right where it left off, making this game very infamous for it’s difficulty. I never put too much time into it to really say much about it, for it was so similar to the first game.

#15

Super Mario Bros

NES, 1985

Times Beaten-2 or 3

This is probably the most famous game of all time, and forever will be so. To this day, it is a fun enough game, but I was never that huge a fan of it due to it’s stiff jumping mechanic and constantly having to replay through the same levels to get to the warp pipes so you can continue where you left off.

 

#14

Super Mario Land 2

Game Boy, 1992

Times Beaten-2 or 3

 

This game is quite unique and still a lot of fun to play. The level designs and nifty power ups, not to mention the introduction of Wario, make this a game to be remembered.

 

#13

Super Mario Bros 2

NES, 1988

Times Beaten-2

This game really took the series in a whole new direction. Suddenly instead of jumping oneverything, you were throwing radishes at them. It’s a really bizarre game, but a lot of fun. The fact that there is 4 playable characters, all with unique traits, make this a very ambitious game for the time.

#12

Super Mario 3D Land

3DS, 2011

Times Beaten-1

This was another twist for the beloved series, taking advantage of the 3D graphics to create a different adventure for Mario, combining elements from the side scrolling games with the 3D ones. While it is a fun game, I wished I was playing a regular 2D or 3D Mario most of the time.

#11

New Super Mario Bros

DS, 2006

Times Beaten-1

A return to the side scrolling age after a decade of being in 3D was a most exciting concept. The only bad thing was that this meant it would be facing up against the last 2D Mario, Super Mario World. And it didn’t even come close, having focused more on keeping faithful to the original NES game, but with a ton of new features added to it.

#10

Super Mario 64

N64, 1996

Times Beaten-2

This is also one of the most famous games ever made, responsible for ushering 3D games into the limelight in a good way. Though the game had a few flaws, it was still pretty amazing for the time. I never was too into it, however, for I felt it was far worse than some of the 2D games.

#9

New Super Mario Bros Wii

Wii, 2009

Times Beaten-4

While this game was a huge improvement over the DS game, it still sorely fell behind some other 2D Marios, making me realize they weren’t even trying to create these side-scrollers like they used to. The “New” series seemed to be something completely different, and while not as good as some of the classics, they are still solid games.

#8

New Super Mario Bros 2

3DS, 2012

Times Beaten-1

This game is a lot of fun, especially compared to the previous two on this list. It was so satisfying to just run like crazy, collecting absurd amounts of coins, through some of the best platforming seen in years.

#7

Super Mario Sunshine

GameCube, 2002

Times Beaten-3

This is probably the most unique Mario game around. Cleaning graffiti with a water pack that has all sorts of different settings, while traversing through beautiful landscapes…just awesome. There was plenty of platforming challenges scattered throughout the game as well, making this a fantastic game all around.

#6

New Super Mario Bros U

Wii U, 2012

Times Beaten-1

Now this is what I’ve been waiting for. Amazing platforming chock full of secrets and challenge, new power ups and other ideas, all scattered throughout a massive world. This was the game I have been waiting for ever since they announced the “new” line of platformers back on DS.

#5

Super Mario Bros 3

smb3

NES, 1988

Times Beaten-2

This game was more than anyone could ever have expected at the time of its release. It completely blew every other platformer out of the water, and still does to most even today. It was such a vast improvement over it’s prequels, it’s amazing to think they are in the same series. A huge world, tons of new content, and unique items will keep this one in the record books forever. It is funny I have only ever beat the game twice, for as a small child, I played this game constantly, just goofing around on the many great stages.

#4

Super Mario Galaxy 2

Wii, 2010

Times Beaten-1

The only reason this places lower than the first game is because this was not really the true game. The only reason this game exists is because there was so much that couldn’t fit into the first game, that Nintendo decided to just make another game to put it all in, which is great news for fans! It’s almost like the best DLC ever. So the whole central idea was not fresh at this point, but there were a ton of new ideas and planets to explore and items to grab that made this game stand out by itself.

#3

Super Mario Galaxy

Wii, 2007

Times Beaten-2

This game is a masterpiece. It is probably one of the very few games I can say I could literally not put down. I was so amazed by how good it was, that in only 3 days I got every star and unlocked Luigi, only to immediately beat the game with every star with him too. No other game has had me play so much at one time, and do it over again with no time in between. The game is so unique and incredible, that I long to play it again…(Curse you backlog!)

#2

Super Mario World

SNES, 1990

Times Beaten-At Least 20

This is probably the best platformer ever made, in my opinion. I spent my childhood uncovering every tiny little secret in this diverse, huge world. The game is so vast and just perfect. I absolutely love it and I can pick it up anytime and play through it, taking all the shortcuts to beat the game quickly, or slowly beat every level, and uncover all the secret paths and not stop until I beat Special Land and turn the world into that awesome weirdo place where the Koopas are Marios.

#1

Super Mario 3D World

Wii U, 2013

Times Beaten-1

Here it is, the best Mario game ever made. I was rather disappointed when they announced the next 3D Mario would be in the same 2D/3D combined style like Super Mario 3D Land, seeing that I wasn’t all that impressed with that game.

But the second I played it, I was proven wrong. The new items, particularly the cat, is amazing, the fact that you can play as a variety of characters, each with unique traits, is even more amazing, the humongous world to explore is creative and diverse, and the gameplay is just simply solid. This game delivered everything I could have wanted for this style of game, and I love it to death.

There is plenty to do in the game, giving it some nice replay value too. I had long given up hope that they would ever top Super Mario World, but it seems any game with “world” in the title is destined for greatness.

And there you have it. That is all the mainline games, ranked from worst to best. They are all very good, memorable games, and there are tons of spin off or other series with Mario that are just as good, if not better. It is safe to say that the gaming industry would not be the same without this little fella, so my hat’s off to him. I can’t wait to see where Odyssey fits in this list!

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Series Ranked: Metroid

Back with yet another series ranked of a video game franchise, so soon after my Sonic The Hedgehog one. But I wanted to celebrate the recent release of Metroid: Samus Returns, and the announcement of Metroid Prime 4 back at e3 in June.

Metroid is probably my third favorite game franchise of all time. So it thrills me to compile this list. I will only be ranking the games I own, which is all of them except the brand new 3DS game, Federation Force, and Metroid Prime pinball. But I have played the latter and it is probably one of the best pinball games out there, so I would recommend it to anyone who is interested.

Well, anyway, here they are, all the Metroid games in my collection, ranked from worst to best.

 

#11

Metroid

NES, 1987

Times Beaten-2

The very first in the series is the worst, which makes perfect sense. For the time, the game was incredibly ambitious and really, really good. But it has aged extremely poorly. Every area looks the same, but just changes colors making it hard to navigate, you can’t duck, which is problematic, and when you die, which is often, you start with about 2 hits worth of health to attempt to progress, forcing you to painstakingly kill enemies in the hopes that you get more health without getting hit yourself. But once you manage to find Varia Suit and Wave Beam, it becomes much easier, though the first time I beat it, I failed to find either, so it was a long, hard road for me…

#10

Metroid Prime: Hunters

DS, 2006

Times Beaten-1

This game was more intended for multiplayer, which actually was very fun. The controls felt a bit awkward, but I think mostly because it was confusing playing it sort of backwards, being left handed. The campaign was not great either and their aren’t many abilities to collect in this game. Still decent fun overall, I suppose.

 

#9

Metroid: Other M

Wii, 2010

Times Beaten-1

This game is good, despite what the majority of the internet seems to think. It has many of the abilities you would want in a Metroid game, plus a lot of new additions and ideas in the game that make it stand apart from the rest of the games. That being said, there were a ton of very stupid decisions made as well, decisions that really hurt it and prevented it from being one of the best. Like really stupid…

I always say it’s a good video game, but a bad Nintendo game.

#8

Metroid II: Return of Samus

Game Boy, 1991

Times Beaten-Around 5

If you’ve read my Top 10 Game Boy games post, you’ll know that I find this to be the best game ever made for the legendary handheld. It was just so amazing for the time and is still great today. Tons of new items, a huge, less confusing world and the thrill of the hunt make this something great.

As a side note, from this game onward, I absolutely love them all. They are without a doubt, phenomenal games.

 

#7

Metroid Prime 2: Echoes

GameCube, 2004

Times Beaten-Around 3

This game really shook things up. For the first time, the developers didn’t just recycle all of Samus’ old tricks. They gave her a ton of new, amazing abilities, some awesome looking suits, and threw her in a deadly, atmospheric world with a deeper story. It is easily the hardest of the Prime trilogy as well, but also very rewarding. This game took a lot of risks, but I feel the beam ammo idea hurt it a lot. I usually just wind up using Power Beam for most of the game. Even so, this is nothing short of a great, exciting game.

#6

Metroid Prime 3: Corruption

Wii, 2007

Times Beaten-2

Again, they took a lot of risks with this game and gave us something completely new once again. As with all the Prime games, you get sucked into a gorgeous world, so detailed and amazing. The use of the Wii Remote makes the game a lot of fun, utilizing many different ways to use Samus’ various abilities. On top of all that, it is so, so, so, so, so much fun. The only bad thing about this game is that it is too easy. It is the only Metroid game I ever played that I didn’t die my first run through.

 

#5

Metroid: Fusion

Game Boy Advance, 2002

Times Beaten- Around 7

This was like a gift from the heavens when it came out. At long last, we got a sequel to Super Metroid, something I was waiting my whole life for, and it didn’t disappoint. They really changed up the Metroid formula for this game, introducing a whole slew of things never done before. It made for an interesting time, that’s for sure, and has one of the best stories in the whole series, with great music and sound effects to support the mood and atmosphere of the game. Aside from the first game, this is probably the hardest Metroid game too.

 

#4

Metroid: Zero Mission

Game Boy Advance, 2004

Times Beaten-At least 10

This is what I consider to be the best remake of all time, though it now looks to be rivaled by the new remake of Metroid II now. This took everything from Super Metroid and Fusion and created something truly magnificent. This game has a ton of new ideas mixed in with most of the old, making it something you can play over and over again.

 

#3

Super Metroid

SNES, 1994

Times Beaten-At least 70

This is a game everyone has heard of, as it is considered one of the best games ever made. And rightfully so, though it is just barely better than Zero Mission. It has some of the best gameplay ever created to date. The amount of content added to this over it’s prequel is astounding. The setting takes place on the same planet as the first game, but it comes to life in a way the NES could never hope to achieve. All the abilities are so fun to use, and there are a lot of them. I could go on and on about this game, but I will just stop here before I get too excited.

#2

Metroid Prime

GameCube, 2002

Times Beaten-Around 5

Released alongside Fusion, 2002 turned out to be the best year for Metroid fans. After an 8 year hiatus, not only did we get a side-scrolling sequel to Metroid 3, but we at long last got to see Samus in all her 3D glory, having skipped the N64 completely, with the exception of her appearance in Super Smash Bros.

It turns out, it was worth the wait. The world of Metroid turned out to be amazing, thanks to the graphical capabilities of the GameCube. Nearly every ability you could ask for was in this first-person-shooter, and it was all done to cater to the drastic new gameplay. Of course, there is tons of new content as well. It is just a great game that is only marginally better than Super Metroid. Like it’s really close between them.

Well that’s it for the Metroid games, but the #1 spot has to go to this amazing compilation.

#1

Metroid Prime Trilogy

Wii, 2009

I didn’t really want to buy this. I had all three games already. But yet, I found myself at GameStop the day it released, dropping 50 bucks on three games I already payed $50  each for. And I don’t regret it at all. These games are so good. 1 and 2 are updated with the motion controls used in the third game, and it just makes for a wonderful experience replaying them like that.

Now this game is like dirt cheap digitally, making it the best value out there. Three of the best games around for like $10? How could you go wrong? And that is why it is number 1 on this list.

 

 

And there you have it. Looking at the small number of games here, it is criminal that for such an old franchise, it sees such infrequent releases. It is one of the best franchises out there, yet it sees no love from Nintendo. It’s a darn shame. But I’ll take them as they come out, as long as they don’t say they are done with the franchise completely.

metroid samus-pose

The Future Of Super Smash Bros

I have been hearing a lot lately about how people would very much like to see some “Super Smash Bros For Switch Deluxe” something or other, this title being an updated version of Smash for Wii U and 3DS combined, but with some bonus material as well, much in the same manner they did with Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and Pokken Tournament DX.

Well, I’ve got a better idea. How about a brand new Smash game? Doesn’t that sound better? Sure the other one would likely come out a whole lot quicker, but why spend the resources? A brand new game, fitted just for Switch makes a whole lot more sense to me. And this time, without the limitations of the 3DS holding it back, it could be a truly perfect game, as good as it can be for both home and handheld play. That is what I want. Not a remake.

But while we are on the subject, let’s talk a bit about the series and what I hate about it. Well…hate might be a strong word.

Let’s get this straight. I love the series…all 5 games are incredible and I still play all of them regularly. The matches are the best part about this. Local multiplayer and even yourself fighting against 3 computers for the sheer fun of it is truly something incredible.

I love the varying stages and the creative and different ways to play on each one. I love the huge cast of characters, and yes, I am including clones as well. I realize they are just a generous bonus from the developers and not “taking the place of another character” as so many outraged people claim. It’s nice to see a clone character rather than them being just a costume. Anyway, playing four player with random characters on random stages has brought me thousands of hours of enjoyment.

But then we get to the more single player stuff. I can not stand it anymore. The multi-man challenges, the homerun contest, the target challenges, classic mode, adventure mode, all-star mode. Dear God I am so sick of them all!

I can’t sit there and beat all these modes with every character in the game another time. We’ve already done it 5 times, and with an ever growing list of characters, it becomes more tedious and annoying.

TrophyIf they are insistent on leaving these, then at least allow us to use a large group of characters at once, or stop giving out trophies for beating it with each one. If you give no reward that people want, then only those who want to do it for fun can have at it. The rest of us who want to collect everything shouldn’t have to suffer through such repetitive and tedious things.

So here are my wishes for the next Smash installment. Drop all that crap. We don’t need it. Developers should spend all their time on characters and stages. Obviously, most of their time is already spent on this I would imagine, but without everything else, they can give us some more. Include every stage and character that has already been in each game and then add a bunch more. I know that is a lot of content and very unrealistic, but who cares? This is my dream! This is all I care about, as many characters and stages to use them on as possible. Oh and maybe some more unique costumes instead of just recolors would be nice too, like what Project M did. Though they do generally base the recolors off a other costumes, so that is something at least.

Luigi_Palette_(SSBM)

But if they really need to keep some single player stuff, keep the event matches. They are actually really fun to play, so I wouldn’t mind that.

Oh, and what happened to unlocking stages and characters? In the Wii U version, you started with nearly everything. Unlocking characters in Brawl and especially Melee made everything so satisfying and fun, and you felt so accomplished after getting them all. And yes, I know if they take out all the fluffy crap like Classic Mode, how will you ever unlock characters? And I simply say, they will think of something, whether it be the event matches, or doing something specific in battles with specific characters or what not. It could easily be done.

Make the adventure unlocking characters, not collecting hundreds of trophies from repeating the same tasks over and over again. Keep trophies for sure, but good God, we don’t need classic anymore. Or custom moves…those have to go. That was the worst. They forced us to beat modes with the same characters over and over again, praying that we would get all their move sets, only doing so after getting the same ones 50 times before getting that damned last one. That was the most tedious chore of them all.

And this game shouldn’t be a chore. It should just be what makes the game so fun. All out  fighting and trying to win for no other purpose than to have fun. 5 stock matches with no time limit for me, all day, everyday!

Super-Smash-Bros.-

Series Ranked: Sonic The Hedgehog

Sonic has been in the spotlight a lot the past few months, and especially now with the recent release of Sonic Mania, and for the first time in a long while, all the buzz about the speedster seems to be very positive. Sonic Mania is even being called by many to be the best Sonic game ever made…quite an impressive feat that no one thought would ever be said in modern times.

To celebrate Sonic’s good fortune, I am here to assemble a list of all Sonic’s games, from worst to best. And by all of them, I mean just the ones I own. There are an awful lot of Sonic games, I mean an awful lot, and I probably don’t even have half of them. I will not be including spin off games like the fantastic Sonic Spinball or Sonic and Sega’s All Star Racing. It’s about his main line games today…for the most part.

#22

Sonic The Hedgehog (PlayStation 3, 2006)

Times Beaten-1

 

This game had so much potential. New type of storyline, three awesome hedgehogs with their own campaigns, plus playable minor characters and beautiful level designs. But no…it turned out to be a disaster thanks to the development having been rushed, thus we all got stuck with an unfinished product. When you weren’t waiting for the game to load, you were getting game over after game over due to bugs and glitches, such as springs not bouncing you far enough and many other unavoidable death traps. I only beat this game on sheer luck of no glitches happening within a level. I always say, that if the developers were able to put the right amount of time into the game, it would have been one of Sonic’s finest games, not one of the worst.

#21

Sonic The Hedgehog (GameGear, 1991)

Times Beaten-1

 

This is basically a dumb downed, but different version of the original genesis game. It is very short, but fun. Not much else to say.

#20

Sonic Gems Collection (GameCube, 2005)

Sonic Gems Collection

This is a compilation of some of the crappier Sonic games. It comes with Sonic CD, Sonic The Fighters, Sonic R and a bunch of games on GameGear… Sonic the Hedgehog 2, Sonic the Hedgehog Spinball, Sonic The Hedgehog: Triple Trouble, Sonic Drift 2, Tails’ Skypatrol, and Tails Adventure. Though it’s not fair of me to say they are crappy. I only played 2 of them. I beat Sonic the Fighters which is pretty bad and I didn’t ever have time to beat Sonic CD in one sitting and the stage select is terrible, only allowing you to play part of a stage. Gems technically shouldn’t be on this list, but since I didn’t play most of the games here, I figured I’d throw it in as one, instead of listing them separately.

#19

Sonic Adventure DX: Director’s Cut (GameCube, 2003)

Times Beaten-0

 

This is an updated version of Sega’s ambitious, first 3D Sonic game. It isn’t very good, but it’s a somewhat well put together game. The variety of playable characters makes it diverse and interesting. Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, and that robot whose name I can’t remember have fine campaigns, but Amy walks unbearably slow, making her story miserable, and the last character, Biggs the Cat is just awful beyond description. Each level you just fish. I think fishing in real life is one of the most boring things a person could do, but it is much worse in a not so good game playing as a fat, retarded cat. I quit the game at this point, because I couldn’t catch the fish in the second or third level, and as far as I know, there is no trick, just wait and hope it bites…just like real fishing!

The coolest feature of this game is the Chao Garden, where you can raise little blue alien things and level them and evolve them into cooler little blue alien things. I never dabbled in this though, so I don’t know too much about it.

#18

Sonic and the Secret Rings (Wii, 2007)

Times Beaten-1

 

This is another not so good game. Sonic had it rough in the beginning of this generation of consoles it would seem. But it was still an okay game I suppose. It is certainly playable in any case. It was also very different from previous games, so it had that sort of intrigue going for it. The best part about it is a very, very fun multiplayer party game that could rival the Mario Party series.

#17

Sonic 3D Blast (Genesis, 1996)

Times Beaten-1?

 

This was certainly a change of pace for the Sonic series. As the name implies, you are in a very ugly, confusing, 3D world. It is sometimes hard to land on enemies when you are trying to kill them, but besides that, it’s very fun, but not great.

#16

Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood (DS, 2008)

Times Beaten-1

 

Sonic tries his hand at an RPG game, and I’ve gotta say, it’s not bad. I mean, it’s nothing spectacular, but you get a whole slew of playable characters, an interesting story, and  good use of the DS touchscreen to use special attacks. And I guess this would be sort of considered a spin off game now that I think about it. Oh well.

#15

Sonic and the Black Knight (Wii, 2009)

Times Beaten-1

 

If you ever wondered what all your favorite Sonic characters looked like clad in medieval armor and equipped with matching weapons, then this is the game for you. You even get to play as a bunch of them! It actually is pretty fun thanks to it’s unique qualities. There are a lot of awesome animated cut scenes as well. It has the same control scheme as The Secret Rings, but a bit easier to use. I would recommend this to anyone who hasn’t played it.

#14

Sonic Unleashed (Wii, 2008)

Times Beaten-1

 

You know, making this list has made me realize one thing. Sega really has gone all out in creating new ways to play Sonic, and I must give them huge respect for that. Most of their games are entirely different and completely unique, and whether they are good or not, it is fun just to experience something new.

Sonic Unleashed is no exception, and this one is literally split down the middle between good and bad. The game has two main gameplay styles. The first is running, mostly side scrolling, high speed sections as normal Sonic that are amazing and incredibly fun. It might be the best Sonic gameplay up to the point of this release. It’s that good. Then you turn into a werehog and punch the crap out of things. This kills the flow of the game and is a bit boring and repetitive. Not a bad game overall, though nothing remarkable.

#13

Sonic The Hedgehog 4: Episode I

(Wii, PlayStation 3, 2010)

Times Beaten-Once for each console

 

When they announced a continuation of the Genesis titles, picking up where Sonic 3 & Knuckles left off, it was some of the greatest news I have ever heard in my life. When I played it, it was a major disappointment. It did not have the feel of the old games at all. The controls and handling weren’t the same, and the game seemed to lack the speed and fun of the games it was trying to impersonate. And it was shorter than most of them. A total regression, though it was still enjoyable overall.

#12

Sonic Rush (DS, 2005)

Times Beaten-1

 

This was Sonic’s first adventure on DS and what a thrill it was. Lots of great, high speed, side scrolling action and a new character to play as. Lot of fun, with great music. This is the way Sonic should be.

#11

Sonic The Hedgehog 4: Episode II (PlayStation 3, 2012)

Times Beaten-1

 

Sega seemed to put a lot more effort into this game than episode 1. It is way better, and we had our old buddy Tails tailing us again. It was a bit longer of a game I believe too, and if you had both episodes, you unlocked a short campaign where you play as Metal Sonic. A very enjoyable game, though it’s feel and control scheme was still that of Episode I.

#10

Sonic: Lost World (Wii U, 2013)

Times Beaten-1

 

This game was sort of reminiscent of Super Mario Galaxy for you could jump and walk around all sorts of floating lands and the like. It had a nice mix of 3D and 2D gameplay and both styles are fun. There are some very funny moments in the story; one line made me laugh hysterically. The game is a bit too easy, but quite enjoyable nonetheless. Yet another unique experience for the blue blur.

#9

Sonic Colors (Wii, 2010)

Times Beaten-1

 

When this came out, it was the first undisputed good 3D Sonic game to come out in years. Sticking to mostly 2D gameplay with plenty of speed parts and slower platforming parts, it is a joy to play from beginning to end. The Wisp power ups are diverse and fun to use, and the whole carnival in space setting is quite awesome.

#8

Sonic The Hedgehog Chaos (GameGear, 1993)

Times Beaten-0

 

Okay, this one might not really deserve to be this high up. I haven’t played it in 20 years. My cousin had it and I used to play it all the time. I don’t remember if I beat it ever, I don’t think so. But I remember loving it. Every level was so much fun. This was the best handheld Sonic game I ever played and still is. I think…

#7

Sonic Generations (3DS, 2011)

Times Beaten-1

 

The modern handheld Sonic meets up with old school Sonic to save the world. You get to race through levels of old, as well as levels from more recent handheld games. It is a lot of fun, taking the best of both genres and mashing them into one incredible game.

#6

Sonic Generations (PlayStation 3, 2011)

Times Beaten-1

I know this is technically the same game, but it is not at all. The story is the same. Modern Sonic and old Sonic team up. But this time it is the modern Sonic from home consoles and you play through different levels than the 3DS version, taking them from console Sonic games and different Genesis games instead. It is a truly great game that plays and feels like the Genesis games when playing as old Sonic, something Sonic 4 failed miserably at. The 3D Sonic levels are remastered and some of the most fun you’ll ever have playing a 3D Sonic game.

#5

Sonic The Hedgehog (Genesis, 1991)

Times Beaten-Around 5-10

The game that started it all. It was an amazing game when it first came out, and still is today. This is some of the finest platforming you will ever come by, as well as some of the best music.

#4

Sonic The Hedgehog 2 (Genesis, 1992)

Times Beaten-Around 10

This I believe is the first Genesis game I ever played. It took everything amazing about the first game and simply made it better, adding a few multiplayer modes, a new character, better graphics and the ever so helpful Super Spin Dash. A true classic right here.

#3

Sonic The Hedgehog 3 (Genesis, 1994)

Times Beaten-Around 10

This took everything amazing about the second game and made it better even further. A true masterpiece.

#2

Sonic & Knuckles (Genesis, 1994)

Times Beaten-2 or 3

As a very young child, I probably played this one the most, but could never come close to beating it. I finally did for the first time probably as an early teenager. This game had the most fun and creative levels, some of the best music, the best cover art, best boss fights and the best addition ever, Knuckles. He has different abilities than Sonic and Tails, which makes for some more fun gameplay. He is way cooler than Sonic and Tails and was my favorite character in the franchise until Shadow came along, which ironically, I always wanted to see a black Sonic ever since I saw the cover art of this game.

This game coincides with Sonic 3, for they were meant to be one game, but was much too big. So instead they made Sonic &  Knuckles the coolest cartridge ever and made it so you can connect Sonic 2 & 3 into the top to allow you to play Knuckles in those games. This game also had a very good storyline for a completely nonverbal game.

 

And the best Sonic game is…

#1

Sonic Adventure 2 Battle (GameCube, 2002)

Times Beaten-Hard To Say

 

This game is incredible. A good story told out through 2 campaigns with 3 playable characters in each campaign, each with unique missions to complete. On top of that was the fact that each level had 5 Sonic Emblems to earn by completing various challenges, which gave huge replay value to the game.

A whole slew of awesome upgrades to each character enhanced the gameplay a lot, as well as the new, intriguing characters added to the game. The gameplay is a lot of fun for each character as you travel through amazingly designed stages with awesome music. Each character even has their own style of music for each of their levels.

There is some fun multiplayer too, though nothing mind blowing.

The most time consuming thing is the Chao Garderns. Unlike the first game, I put hours upon hours into growing my Chaos. It is so addictive. I never got bored of replaying the levels to find power-ups for the lil’ buggers. When you beefed them up enough, there are countless events they can participate in against other very strong Chaos. It’s fun. I couldn’t stop playing this game. But eventually a busier lifestyle and new systems and games to play forced me to put a stop to it. If I didn’t have a massive backlog of games, you can bet I would go back to this game.

The reason I say “hard to say” next to Times Beaten is because I’ve played through each level countless times, though only did the full story mode twice.

 

And that’s it! I have a handful of Sonic games in my aforementioned backlog, so I will update this list as I get to them. Who knows what the future will hold for Sonic, but for right now, it looks pretty good.

sonic forces

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Series Ranked: The Legend Of Zelda

Holy crap! In three weeks or so, we are getting the first brand new home console Zelda game for the first time in nearly 6 years! I am pumped, especially since it comes along with a brand new, amazing looking console! What more could you ask for? To celebrate the occasion, I will be ranking every Zelda game that I happen to own from worst to best. Don’t worry, I own nearly all of them, so the list is close enough to complete. After all, I can’t rate a game I have never played before, though that seems to be quite a common thing to do now by many gamers.

I have also ranked all the Nintendo Consoles, if you want to check that out.

But anyway, here is all the Zelda games I own, ranked worst to best. I will be listing also the console they were on, the year released and number of times I’ve beaten them, just so you can get an idea of how much I’ve played them.

#20 The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Anniversary Edition  (DS, 2011)

 

Times Beaten-1

This is the only Zelda game that I have played that I can honestly say I didn’t like. But that’s really because it’s not really a Zelda game. You just run around with 4 Links and solve little puzzles and it’s over before you know it. It was really just a quick cash grab and a way to show off the multiplayer capabilities of the DS using a big franchise to draw people in. I honestly don’t remember too much about it though.

 

#19 Link’s Crossbow Training   (Wii, 2007)

Times Beaten-1

Again, this is not a real Zelda game, but a bonus game that came packaged with the Wii Zapper, which was a gun shaped device that allowed you to insert the Wii Remote and nunchuk into it so that shooter games could be played more…realistically I suppose! Nothing gets you higher than really feeling like blasting away people.

Anyway, this game was surprisingly a lot of fun. It’s very short, but it manages to give you a feel for the Zapper, and having a good time in doing so. The developers put a lot of effort into such a small project, and that is always a great thing to see.

#18 The Legend Of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass  (DS, 2007)

Times Beaten-1

Our first actual Zelda game on the list. This is the only real Zelda game I can say I almost don’t like. It was just annoying to always go into some tower, avoiding some evil mist and Darknuts while finding special lantern fuel or whatever. I haven’t played it in a very long time, and am honestly in no hurry to do so again. But it is not a bad game by any means.

#17 Zelda II: The Adventure of Link  (NES, 1988)

Times Beaten-1

This is the black sheep of the Zelda family. It changed up the formula to a sidescrolling RPG. It’s hard as hell, but very rewarding. The challenge comes from losing all your XP when you die, but if you manage to level, you can pick various stats to level up. It actually is quite a fun game.

#16 The Legend Of Zelda: Majora’s Mask  (N64, 2000)

 

Times Beaten-2

If Zelda 2 was the black sheep, consider this the half-black sheep. This came out a mere year after Ocarina of Time to capitalize on the success of that game. What we got was something completely different, and quite good given the short development time. Instead of collecting tons of items, you collect masks instead (while still getting a large variety of items anyway). Each mask gives you some new type of ability or has some other effect. Some masks turn you into beloved Hylian races that you can go around and kill stuff with. It’s a unique twist on the Zelda formula and keeps up with the time traveling aspect born in Ocarina of Time. It is probably one of the hardest Zelda games too. This all being said, I wasn’t really wowed by this game, however enjoyable it is. I may have only beaten it twice, but I’ve played through more or less half of it at least two other times, each time liking it more and more.

#15 The Legend Of Zelda: Oracle Of Ages  (Game Boy Color, 2001)

Times Beaten-3

Nintendo pulled a pokemon with this game, releasing a sibling alongside it. The story is driven away from the main “rescue Zelda” bit, dealing with other villains and the like as well. This game has a focus on puzzle solving, and let me tell you, some of them are indeed quite tricky! This game included tons of new and returning items, and the ability to switch to different ages. Lot of fun!

 

#14 The Legend Of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons  (Game Boy Color, 2001)

Times Beaten-2

Released alongside “Ages,” this was more or less the same game, but with a different villain, different oracle, and instead of traveling through ages, you could change the seasons. The items may have been a little different too. Another great game, this time more focused on action than puzzle solving. If linked with “ages” it would unlock a new dungeon where you could fight Ganon.

 

#13 The Legend Of Zelda: Spirit Tracks   (DS, 2009)

Times Beaten-1

This game was very similar to Phantom Hourglass, except a whole lot better. Driving around in customizable trains was a great idea and made traveling sort of fun. I don’t really remember too much about it, but I know I really liked it. Playing the flute thing you got was really cool too.

#12 The Legend Of Zelda: Link’s Awakening DX   (Game Boy Color, 1998)

Times Beaten-2

The original game for the Game Boy was the first handheld Zelda game. And let me tell you, they came out swinging. It is an amazing game that is every bit as fun now as it was 20 years ago. I used to have it, but I don’t know what happened to it. But that is okay, because the Director’s Cut version made it all much better. The added color allowed for new tunics found in a “color dungeon” as well as some other minor adjustments. The game has a ton of content for such an old game and can keep you busy for hours on end. It took the incredible fun of the first Zelda game and made the transition onto handheld flawlessly.

#11 The Legend Of Zelda: The Wind Waker   (Gamecube, 2003)

Times Beaten-4

This is another unique Zelda game, but not so much in the gameplay aspect of it. It’s story and setting are what really set it apart. It is a lot of fun and the cel shaded graphics are gorgeous. There are a bunch of new races included, as well as some familiar ones. The amount of content is enormous, spread out over the equally big world. That is where the problem with this game comes in too. The world takes forever to travel on, and collecting the maps and pieces of the Triforce is awfully tedious.

#10 The Legend of Zelda   (NES, 1987)

Times Beaten-1

Holy crap! If ever there was a game that was ahead of it’s time, aspiring and/or innovative, this was it. For the time, this game was massive and unique. Nothing had ever been done remotely close to this. It was a huge undertaking and blew everyone away. Like seriously, the only game that could come close to being as amazing as this for the time is Super Mario Bros. 3. But that was the fourth game in that series and this was the first. It is still just as fun today, and honestly, it holds up to the standards of today’s games as well. It is truly a masterpiece and the best game to come out of the 80’s.

#9 The Legend Of Zelda: The Minish Cap   (Game Boy Advance, 2005)

Times Beaten-1

I am not going to lie, I don’t remember much about this game, other than that it is really good, it has like an origin story to it, and a fun shrinking ability which makes puzzle solving and exploration a lot of fun. A very solid game.

#8 The Legend Of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds   (3DS, 2013)

Times Beaten-1

Say hello to the best handheld Zelda game. My goodness, it is good. Lots of new items, some weird, new renting system for the items, a fabulous story, and great gameplay. It is essentially a remake of A Link to the Past, and actually is a linear sequel. Really wonderful game. It falls just short of its prequel however.

 

#7 The Legend Of Zelda: A Link To The Past  (SNES, 1992)

Times Beaten-3

Heh, funny to see I have only bothered to beat this game 3 times, when I must have at least started new games like 15 times over the years. I had commitment issues as a small child.

Anyway, this game did for it’s generation what the first Zelda did for the 80’s. This game floored everybody. I still remember playing it for the first time and being completely blown away. It took what made the first game perfect and improved upon that perfection. Tons more items, a larger map to explore, all sorts of new tricks and people. It was just crazy. The story was a bit deeper for back then as well, always pushing you to the next challenge, anxious to see what happens next, what new item you will find and how you would get to use it. Just awesome…

#6 The Legend Of Zelda: Twilight Princess   (Gamecube, 2006)

Times Beaten-2

Breath of the Wild is in a very similar situation to the one Twilight Princess was in. It got delayed for about two years and then was released on Gamecube, and as a launch title for the brand new Wii. But whereas both versions of BotW are coming out at the same time, they actually released the Gamecube version a few months later to push Wii sales. But if you were like me, it took about a year to actually get hold of a Wii, so I gave up and bought it on Gamecube. I was really looking forward to this game and was not disappointed. There was tons of new features, a unique and beautiful graphical style, and just an overall great atmosphere to it. This game also features some of my favorite dungeon designs, for they sort of varied from past games.

#5 The Legend Of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD   (Wii U, 2013)

Times Beaten-1

This game is phenomenal. It took everything that made the original version annoying and remedied it. It fixed every little issue, making this one of the best Zelda games ever. I couldn’t believe how much better it was. The gamepad made accessing maps and items very quick and easy as well. Suddenly a game I was not that crazy about became one of my favorites. And the cel shaded visuals are just stunning in HD.

#4 The Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina of Time   (N64, 1998)

Times Beaten-Around 10

Nintendo did it once again. They took everyone by surprise and completely blew away everyone’s expectations. Just like Zelda and Link to the Past, this game was something truly ambitious and unheard of. And it also is incredibly fun to this day. Tons of items, songs, locations and people make this one to remember. The best part is the time travel however. Being able to play as Young Link and Adult Link is such a great feature that makes any of the other games have a hard time comparing to it.

#3 The Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time Master Quest   (Gamecube, 2003)

Times Beaten-2

If I remember correctly, this was a preorder bonus for The Wind Waker. Much better than today’s “bonuses” I must say. Needless to say, I preordered it immediately. The master quest is essentially the same game, except with much more difficult puzzles in it. It was a breath of fresh air, playing one of my favorite games with new adjustments to it. It was truly a great feeling. So that is why it tops the original.

#2 The Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time 3D   (3DS, 2011)

Times Beaten-1

A classic game that benefits from updated visuals, slight motion control and a touchscreen? Obviously this is the best version. It makes quite a few improvements to a masterpiece. Ocarina of Time just continues to shine through and through.

#1 The Legend Of Zelda: Skyward Sword  (Wii, 2011)

Times Beaten-1

Here it is, the best Zelda of all time. Thanks to the Wii’s motion controls, it put Link’s sword and shield in your hands. Though the controls were a bit tricky to figure out, once you learned how to hold the controllers and how to move them, it was a breeze, making for some truly satisfying gameplay. There was a great story and the Loftwing’s were a lot of fun to travel on. Lots of cool and memorable characters, both ally and villain, made the game even better. And this game actually had challenging fights in it. Most 3D Zelda games were quite easy, focusing more on puzzle solving than action. This had a nice balance of both. Tons of brand new items were thrown in the mix as well, along with a new upgrade system for most of your items. I never thought any game would top Ocarina, but this game just makes it feel so dated.

Skyward Sword truly has a unique feel, while having that familiarity as well. As do all the games for that matter. That is what makes them so good. That is why we all crave for another release, for Breath of the Wild looks to fit that formula perfectly. I also love how every game has that awesome gold cover to it, just holding that in your hands gives you a great feeling.

So there you have it. If memory serves correct, the only games I was missing in this list were TriForce Heroes, Link’s Awakening, Twilight Princess HD, Majora’s Mask 3D and Four Swords Adventure.

 

 

Series Ranked: Nintendo Consoles

With the release of Nintendo’s new console, codenamed “NX” slowly creeping closer and closer to its March release, we still have virtually no information about it at all. My guess is that they will finally unveil everything about it in September, giving a good six months for gamers to decide if they want to buy it or not.

Nintendo’s consoles have seen huge success and not so much success. But how well something sells doesn’t grade the quality of the console, so that is what makes this list fun to make. I judge the consoles strictly on the games present on each console, because after all, that is what a video game consoles prime purpose is, right? Playing video games? Though most people have sadly seemed to have forgotten that fact these days.

That’s right, graphics, innovation, all that will not affect the rank of these consoles, unless they somehow add to the gameplay of the games. Because again, we are playing games here.

They are listed from my least favorite, to my favorite.

#6 Nintendo Entertainment System (1983)

NES-Console-Set.jpg

While this is probably regarded as the most famous console of all time, responsible for turning around the practically dead video game industry, it has suffered due to the early age of gaming at this point. Though pretty much everything that wasn’t an arcade port was new and exciting, many of the games were just plain bad. And if that wasn’t annoying enough, most of them were outrageously hard and required you to play for hours and hours at a time if you ever wanted to beat one of them due to the fact that there were no save files for most of the games, Zelda being the first game to implement it; and only a few had passwords.

But among all the bad and terrible games were a few gems that still hold up today.

My top three games for the console are: The Legend Of Zelda, Super Mario Bros. 3, Zelda II: The Adventure of Link.

The top two games especially blow any of the others on this console out of the water, and even many of today’s games as well. They are truly fantastic, especially for the time they came out. All three of these and many more are available on the Nintendo eShop if you have a Wii or Wii U.

#5 Nintendo 64 (1996)

n64

This was about as exciting as it got when this came out. Side-scrolling sprites made the jump to 3D polygons. Everyone can probably remember playing Super Mario 64 for the first time. But other than this huge jump in gaming technology, it was a rather awkward stage in gaming history. It’s competitors, the PlayStation and Dreamcast can also fit into this category. A lot of the games were very bad in this generation. Constant fighting with camera angles and bad controls plagued the systems, most likely due to the developers inexperience at developing games in 3D. Not to mention the controller was just very strange and inefficient, though still comfortable. The graphics themselves looked amazing back then, but playing them now, other than a select few, they are just horrid blobs. This is a console I bought very few games on, but despite all the bad ones, like the NES, this too was home to some of the best games ever made.

My top three are: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Paper Mario, MarioKart 64

These three games were phenomenal when they came out, and my top 2 still are today. Zelda made the jump to 3D better than anyone would have ever imagined, easily the best 2D to 3D jump made by any franchise.

Paper Mario was a unique and interesting idea that was remarkable and an exciting new direction for the Mario series, thanks to 3D graphics.

I played Mariokart 64 nonstop when I was a youngster. Sadly, it has not aged very well at all.

All these games mentioned are also on eShop for Wii and Wii U.

#4 Wii (2006)

nintendo-wii.jpg

Motion controls. Something everyone was looking forward to all their lives. Everybody was excited for the Wii. Everyone remembers how exciting it was to play Wii Sports and Zelda: Twilight Princess with motion controls for the first time. It was a real exiting time and a big step forward in gaming history.

But unfortunately, human beings being the mindless lazy people that we are, motion controls proved to be too much effort to play a game with, and the underpowered graphics of the console failed to hold the attention of the people who need to look at something pretty and shiny. Eventually the motion controls were reduced to almost nothing more than a simple flick to do a thing or two in game, and a lot of third party games never even saw a release on the console due to how underpowered Wii was compared to PS3 and XB360. They also didn’t much feel like making the games with motion controls, finding it easier to just port from PS3 to 360 with all their huge similarities.

This hurt the Wii a lot. Everyone I knew owned a Wii, but I think I was the only one I knew who consistently played it. Sure, I had to buy a PS3 to get a lot of the games I was missing owning just a Wii, but the games that did come out, especially the exclusives, were phenomenal. The games that did motion control right were a lot of fun to play. Heck, even just flicking the remote to swing a sword or something was a lot of fun and more satisfying than pushing a button.

It’s a great console, but the lack of third party support brings this one way down on the list.

My top three games: Xenoblade Chronicles, Super Mario Galaxy, Metroid Prime 3: Corruption

These three are among the best of the many gems that appeared on the console and can also be found on the Wii U eShop.

#3 Wii U (2012)

I was never more excited for a console to come out than this one. When the gamepad controller was revealed, I was ecstatic. This took all the fun of the Wii’s unique controls and added another screen right in the players hands. I found myself imagining all the amazing ways this gamepad could be used in games. Unfortunately, I don’t think anyone else could, players or developers. Initial games like Nintendo Land and ZombiU used the gamepad exceptionally and delivered both single player and multiplayer experiences that you could possibly only find on Wii U, and it was a lot of fun. But all too quickly, the gamepad became nothing more than a mirror image of what was on your TV. Even Nintendo developers couldn’t come up with clever ways to use it for many of their games.And again the system was underpowered, so no one wanted it. It wasn’t shiny enough I guess.

And just like Wii, third parties dropped the console very quickly due to poor sales and the extra time to develop for the gamepad and overall difficulty of developing for the console in general. Except this time around it was much worse. Nearly every third party stopped making games for Wii U, leaving Nintendo to virtually support the console on their own. And I have to say, all things considered, they have done a fantastic job. Every game that has come out from them has been nothing short of a homerun, being some of the best games made in many, many years, and quite frankly, some of the best games ever.

Wii U had the potential to be the greatest console ever. Lack of third party support and use of the gamepad and underpowered hardware hurt this system badly, and every one learned from Wii not to invest their money into this.

I for one am extremely pleased with it, even if there is a severe lack of games for it, simply because the games are incredible that did make their way on it.

My top three: Super Mario 3D World, ZombiU, Wonderful 101, though there are so many Wii U games I have on back log that this could change any time.

#2 Super Nintendo Entertainment System (1991)

SNES-Mod1-Console-Set.jpg

This is a wonderful, wonderful system that I spent all of the 90’s playing, especially since I found it so much better than N64. This was when Nintendo dominated the video game market, getting basically every game developers made back then. Though unfortunately a lot of bad games and over the top, impossibly hard ones made their way onto it, just like its predecessor, it also played host to an incredible and unimaginable increase in game quality. In addition to tons of new and exciting games, we also saw additions to big franchises from the NES make its way over, blazing a trail of glory that continues to shine today. Mario, Zelda, Metroid, Mega Man, Final Fantasy and Castlevania came out with some of the best games ever made back then, all of which can still be considered such today. Many new series started on this console as well, such as Mega Man X and Star Fox. This system just had one great game after another, keeping me very busy in my youth.

My top three games are probably a lot of other peoples. Super Metroid, Super Mario World, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.

These games I still play as often as I can for they are just eternally fun. Don’t just take my word for it. All three of these games can likely be found in most top 10 best games ever made lists, if not the top five.

And they of course can be found on Wii and Wii U eShop.

#1 Gamecube (2001)

gcn

And here we are, my absolute favorite Nintendo console, and favorite console of all time for that matter.

I love everything about the Gamecube. It’s strange, unique look and color, it’s neat little mini discs, heck even the name is awesome. It just says “yeah, I’m a cube that plays games, bitch!” It’s so cool.

The games themselves are what really make this console great however. For the first time, Nintendo did not release the system with a Mario title, but instead shook things up with a Luigi game, where he had to actually rescue Mario. The best part was, this wasn’t simply a Mario game where you played as Luigi, but a whole new concept more closely related to Ghostbusters rather than a Mario game.

And Luigi’s Mansion was not the only game to shake up classic Nintendo franchises. Super Mario Sunshine, Star Fox Adventures, Metroid Prime, Kirby: Air Ride, Donkey Konga/Jungle Beat-all examples of changing up the formula. Plus, we were treated to F-Zero, another Star Fox game, a sequel to Metroid Prime and Paper Mario, two Zelda games with completely contrasting graphics and both featuring innovative/unique elements that make both of them really stand out.

New titles such as Capcom’s Viewtiful Joe were introduced on the Gamecube, this game being one of my favorites of all time, which also got a sequel on the system.Nintendo also came out with a new franchise, the Pikmin series started out here, and that too got a sequel.

Other mind blowing events happened on Gamecube, such as Sonic being put on a Nintendo console! This was something no one ever thought would happen and we were treated to remakes of the Sonic Adventure games from Dreamcast, the second one being my favorite Sonic game ever.

Owners of this system were also treated to remakes and/or re-releases of the entire  Resident Evil series. I still consider the Resident Evil remake to be one of the greatest remakes of all time, maybe only second to Metroid: Zero Mission for GBA. Gamecube even got Resident Evil 4 as an exclusive initially, before its popularity exploded.

And lets talk about all the collections that came out for the system. Going back to Sonic, we had the Sonic Mega Collection, taking all the genesis games and putting them on one disc, and also the Sonic Gems Collection, taking most of the not so great Sonic games and putting them on one disc.

The Mega Man Anniversary Collection was a great gift to gamers, which is much better than the current Mega Man Legacy, as well as the Mega Man X Collection. And don’t forget about the Zelda Collection! There’s probably a few more I can’t think of right now too!

The third party games that made it on the system were incredible as well. There were a ton more games to choose from than compared to Wii and Wii U, and most of them were super fun to play. It seemed gaming as a whole was so much better than compared to the previous generation of gaming, and Gamecube did it best out of the three competing consoles. And most of the games on Gamecube still look gorgeous today. It was truly a lasting console, though ironically, it had very low sales.

And speaking of a lasting console, it has the best controller ever made, absolutely comfortable and amazing. It is so good that it still is being made today for the Wii and Wii U, the latter having a port made for it so people can still play Smash Bros with it.

To me, any company will have a hard time topping this system. I still buy games for it every now and then 15 years later.

My top three games are Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door, Metroid Prime, Viewtiful Joe.

All three of these games rank among my favorites, with Paper Mario actually being my number 1 game of all time.