Over 25,000 people took a highly unscientific poll on the greatest video games of all time. We used the data to compile a list of games everyone must play at least once in their life.
The games are not listed in any particular order.
1. Final Fantasy VII (PS1) shows that blocky mid-90’s polygons could tell a complex story full of twists and emotional nuance.
The remake is coming out soon, so if you can’t adjust to the blocky graphics and new gameplay, wait and see if it translates well to next-generation. They might do a new gameplay system though so it won’t quite be the original.
2. The Last of Us (PS3/PS4) takes character moments to a truly cinematic level and stands up as an iconic work of fiction.
Like this moment where Joel and Ellie stumbled upon a surviving zoo giraffe in the face of fungal zombie apocalypse.
3. Portal (PC) demonstrates that modern gaming can create unique mind-bending experiences unmatched in any other medium.
Also the cake is a lie.
4. The Counter-Strike (PC) games are an exercise in pacing and team-based gameplay in multiplayer.
AWP 4 life.
5. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (N64) is widely considered the best game in a series that has no bad apples.
It’s iconic. It’s beautiful. It’s perfect.
6. The Sims 3 (PC) is an indescribably unique experience – like having tiny, beautiful jibbering human pets.
It makes you wish you spoke Simlish.
7. Super Smash Bros. Melee (GCN) is still the ultimate way to party and compete with your friends.
All of the games in the Smash series are really good, but Melee is still running strong as a competitive e-sport, which speaks to its incredible design.
8. Grand Theft Auto V (PS3/360) is the greatest sandbox for fulfilling your criminal ambitions.
You’ll spend hours getting fly and pimping out your ride.
9. Super Mario World (SNES) is the perfect ’90s platformer and is a blast to play to this day.
It also introduced Yoshi to the world!
10. Metal Gear Solid (PS1) fits cinematic level experiences and international intrigue into a mere 32-bits.
Snake? What happened? SNAAAAAAAAAKE?
11. Mortal Kombat X (PS4/Xbox One)and its predecessor shows that a classic series can find new heights in terms of story and gameplay.
Get over here (and play it with a friend)!
12. The success of Minecraft (PC) demonstrates that art can be found in simple expressions of creativity.
Build your dreams, friends.
13. Diablo II (PC) is still the iconic hack and slash and lives on in Diablo III.
Barb + Whirlwind? Yes.
14. Assassin’s Creed II (PS3/360) makes you feel like a stealthy renaissance badass.
And you probably had no idea you wanted that.
15. God of War 2 (PS2) is a timeless combination of righteous rage and difficult gameplay.
Avenge your family. Don’t mash buttons.
16. Donkey Kong Country 1 and 2 (SNES) are masterpieces in level design and moody, 16-bit music.
Aquatic Ambience is one of the greatest video game songs of all time.
17. The Civilization (PC) series teaches you how to think like a leader.
Never trust Gandhi.
18. Super Metroid (SNES) hit the perfect tone of loneliness, determination, and atmosphere as you explored Zebes in 2-D.
Wait until you get the Screw Attack though.
19. Kingdom Hearts (PS2) is a lot of things – a Disney/Square crossover and an innovative RPG – but most importantly, it’s a powerful story about friendship.
And you get to swing around a Keyblade.
20. The Elder Scrolls series is a breathtaking experience that shows the massive scale that gaming can take.
Are you Dragonborn? Available on multiple platforms.
21. The Secret of Monkey Island (PC) is a legendary point-and-click game with a great story and quippy, smart dialogue that was way ahead of its time.
Guybrush Threepwood is also an iconic character.
22. Mario Kart 8 (Wii U) is a masterful update of the classic formula of the classic series and will have you and your friends hooked if you haven’t played sinceMario Kart 64.
23. Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Genesis) still has blazing fast gameplay that can’t be matched.
Gotta go fast, except when in the face of some chemically tainted water.
24. Borderlands 2’s zany world, unique art direction, and endless variety has to be tried out at least once.
It’s also hilarious and you’ll love to hate Handsome Jack. Available on PS3/PS4/360/One/PC/Mac.
25. Halo II’s (XBox) vehicular combat and multiplayer takes first person shooting to a gloriously fun new heights.
Seriously, the vehicles!!!!
26. Age of Empires II (PC) makes managing resources and building a kingdom into an addiction.
It’s basically a drug.
27. Street Fighter 2 is the first game that made the arcade feel like a real battleground.
28. If you haven’t had a night of a Mario Party 2 (N64) with friends, have you truly lived?
And have you really ever faced pain if you didn’t lose after being 2 stars up the whole game?
29. Super Mario 64 (N64) revolutionized jumping around in 3D space. You can spend hours just running around Peach’s Castle.
It also introduced the world to “IT”S-A-ME, MARIO!”
30. Banjo-Kazooie (N64) is a game packed to the brim with secrets and collectibles. You won’t want to stop searching.
Nobody expects Jinjo.
31. Chrono Trigger (SNES) has you travel through various time periods to save the world in the form of a classic ’90s RPG.
And it has an incredible soundtrack.
32. Pokémon (Game Boy) is one of the greatest social gaming experiences you could ever have and you’re crazy if you’ve never played it before.
GET ON IT NOW.
32 Video Games You Have To Play Before You Die