In today’s post, PC and Wii gets lots of love.
Five down, twenty to go! Today, we have my favorite indie game, a PC masterpiece, a couple of fantastic Wii games, and more fun for the GBA!
20: Cave Story+
Developer: Studio Pixel
Publisher: Studio Pixel
Release Date: November 7, 2011
The original Cave Story was released as freeware in 2001. It was created by one man in his free time and quickly became a classic. In 2011, the now “Studio Pixel” released Cave Story+, an upgraded version of Cave Story with extra levels, modes, and updated presentation. And to me, it still stands as one of the greatest PC games ever made. The writing in Cave Story feels so genuine; you can tell Pixel spent a lot of time pouring his heart out into this project. Beautiful pixel art and catchy chip-tune music adds more than enough presentational flare to the overall package. Cave Story is a labor of love, and Cave Story+ is just a more amped up version of that.
Cave Story+ also gets the honor of “Best Indie Game”.
19: Xenoblade Chronicles
Developer: Monolith Soft
Release Date: April 6, 2012
It’s amazing to me how Xenoblade Chronicles almost didn’t make it to America. As one of this generation’s best JRPG’s, Xenoblade engrossed me in its beautiful world full of living and breathing characters. Its combat mixed MMO with traditional JRPG mechanics, creating an innovative battle system that’s both accessible and fun. Add to that a story that goes absolutely nuts and themes that start to question your sanity, and you’ve got one pretty amazing game that you seriously cannot miss. Nintendo’s newest I.P. does not disappoint, and it will stand the test of time as one of the greatest JRPG’s ever made.
You can read my review for Xenoblade Chronicles here.
Xenoblade Chronicles also gets the honor of “Best Original Soundtrack”.
18: Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Developer: Sora, Ltd.
Release Date: March 9, 2008
Super Smash Bros. Brawl isn’t your typical fighting game. It’s a multiplayer mash-up that mixes the elements of action and combat to create the ultimate party fighting game. Characters from Nintendo games of past and present fight to the death in Brawl’s arenas, as well as a few guest characters as Snake and Sonic. Each character has his or her own personality, and each stage is set to challenge the player’s ability to adapt to different situations. Its mechanics are sound, even if arguably imbalanced, and you seriously can’t go wrong at a friendly gathering with SSBB. The best Smash Bros. is also one of the best fighting games around, so if you don’t have this game, what’s stopping you?
Super Smash Bros. Brawl also gets the honor of “Best Fighting Game”.
17: WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$!
Developer: Nintendo R&D
Release Date: May 26, 2003
Platform(s): Game Boy Advance
They say simpler is better, and that’s certainly the case with the first WarioWare. One of the GBA’s glowing titles, WarioWare, Inc. was unlike any other game we’ve played. Who knew racing through a bunch of 5-second microgames could be so much fun? It certainly was ingenious as much as it was addictive, hilarious, and an absolute blast. It doesn’t get much better than the first WarioWare, and while its numerous sequels tried out new gimmicks and ideas, I’ll always appreciate Mega Microgame$ for striving to be both simple and fun. Is that not what video games should be about anyways?
Developer: Valve Corporation
Publisher: Valve Corporation
Release Date: October 9, 2007
Platform(s): PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
Portal is one of those games that feels so smart you have a hard time understanding how no one could have come up with it until midway through the seventh generation. The mechanics are simple: you shoot two portals onto different surfaces, then walk right through them. But the puzzles are complex, forcing you to analyze each test chamber in terms of physics and spatial reasoning. Timing each portal and utilizing every piece of real estate in the room, getting from start to finish becomes more and more complex and challenging, until you finally reach the end of the final test chamber. But don’t go so fast; Portal has a story and it wants to tell it to you, so why not stick around and enjoy it while you can? It’s one of the most innovative titles of this generation, and one that promises cake at the end. Seriously, Portal is unlike anything you’ve ever experienced.
Well that’s enough for today. Be sure to check out yesterday’s post and stay tuned for more of my 25 games of all time!