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Greatest Video Games Of The Console Era
[Image via Nintendo]

Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

  • Year of Release: 1998
  • Developer: Nintendo

Legend of Zelda games has always been fun to play. The real struggle is never IF it’ll be fun, but just how long it might take for people to beat it. Nintendo has never disappointed fans with the length of these games. Ocarina of Time was the fifth title in the already “legendary” series. What could they do for this game to make it stand out? First, they heavily improved the graphics system and put us into a 3D environment. Second, they introduced things many games use to this very day. That includes a target-lock system for combat as well as context-sensitive buttons.

Both are common for all 3D adventure games. In order to progress, Link has to learn how to play several songs on an ocarina. A simple premise, but an incredible experience. The story focuses on Link, who is on a quest to stop King Ganondorf. This forces him to travel through time and navigate various dungeons and even an overworld. To this day, Ocarina of Time is considered one of the greatest video games ever made. It also maintains one of the highest ratings for an adventure game in history.

Greatest Video Games Of The Console Era
[Image via Naughty Dog]

The Last of Us

  • Year of Release: 2013
  • Developer: Naughty Dog

The Last of Us was made by Naughty Dog, the same studio behind Uncharted. Players can easily see the similarities within the gameplay, yet the stories could not be more different. Players will control Joel, a gifted smuggler who is given the task to get a teenage girl named Ellie into Canada. The post-apocalyptic United States is ravaged by zombie-like creatures. These are humans that became infected by a mutated fungus from the Cordyceps genus. It makes humans hostile and cannibalistic, making them a danger to everyone around them.

Joel sadly lost his daughter when fleeing a chaotic place where the infected have invaded. A soldier shot her, and now Joel sees Ellie almost as the daughter he lost and refuses to let anything happen to her. There are several relatively safe quarantine zones Joel and Ellie can stop at, but getting to each one across the U.S. is not an easy task. Ellie is special to all of this because they found that she has immunity to the infection. Thus, they need to get her to a science lab that can create a cure using her blood…or so we’re led to believe.

Greatest Video Games Of The Console Era
[Image via Bethesda Game Studios]

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

  • Year of Release: 2011
  • Developer: Bethesda Game Studios

You’d be forgiven for not knowing that Skyrim is part of the Elder Scrolls franchise. Most just think of Skyrim as its own thing, unconnected to Elder Scrolls at all. This is an RPG game that allows you to pretty much create your own experience. The main story revolves around your character, nicknamed “The Dragonborn” to make life easier on NPCs. You’re on a quest to defeat the Dragon that has been prophesied to destroy the world, Alduin the World-Eater. The game takes place around 200 years after Oblivion in the land of Skyrim, hence the game title.

Within the game, your player must complete quests and improve your skills and abilities within an amazing open-world setting. Skyrim utilizes the amazing Creation Engine that was literally rebuilt just for the game. The game looks gorgeous and plays impressively, which allowed it to get critical praise for world and player design, as well as its combat system. While there have been some issues with the melee system among other things, nothing ever overshadowed its greatness. Overall, this is one of the greatest video games ever made and most critics tend to agree on that.

Greatest Video Games Of The Console Era
[Image via Nintendo]

Super Mario Bros. 3

  • Year of Release: 1990
  • Developer: Nintendo

Super Mario Bros. is a legendary franchise. In fact, it is so impressive that we might be committing gamer suicide by even attempting to pick the best game among the Super Mario Bros. series. However, if we are to pick the best of the bunch, most would say Super Mario Bros. 3 is the best one. Initially, this game was actually formed for the arcade before finally getting an NES release in 1990 and 1991 respectively.

In it, you get to play as both Mario and Luigi. Unlike in other games, you are not tasked to save Princess Peach. Rather, you must save Princess Toadstool. Yet the brothers must also save rulers from seven different kingdoms, and battle against Bowser or his children This is the first game to give Mario or Luigi the ability to fly or slide down slopes. The world map is very large for a game this old. It is was a challenging, fun game for fans and critics alike. This could be why it is STILL the third highest-selling Nintendo game of all time.

Greatest Video Games Of The Console Era
[Image via Naughty Dog]

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves

  • Year of Release: 2009
  • Developer: Naughty Dog

We know, another Uncharted game? It might seem like a lot but Uncharted 2 truly stepped up and did some amazing things that we never saw beforehand. It takes place two years after the events of the first game. Nathan Drake partners with Chloe Frazer who seems to be a friend and foe at the same time. Yet the two have a romantic connection, which is made all the more awkward when Elena shows up. Drake and co. are in search of the Cintemani Stone and the infamous city of Shambhala. Yet a criminal group is on the search too, led by Zoran Lazarević.

They even use Drake to help them find everything, but he knows his fate is to die the moment he helps them find everything. Not only must he find it, but he must also take out all his foes too. Naughty Dog literally invented their own game engine to make this game because what they needed did not yet exist while they developed it. That allowed them to do motion capture to make every movement of the characters seem realistic, something that very few studios had ever done. The game’s beauty is notable and everything is overly elaborate. The storytelling is amazing too. This game is a non-stop thrill ride from the start!

Greatest Video Games Of The Console Era
[Image via Rockstar Studios]

Red Dead Redemption 2

  • Year of Release: 2019
  • Developer: Rockstar Studios

In a prequel to the original Red Dead Redemption, Red Dead 2 follows the gang that John Marston hunts down in the first game. We find out what led to not only his departure from the gang but also why it seemed to dissolve as it did. You play as Arthur Morgan, who is not part of the first game for an obvious reason players find out later. The story flows through him, but do not be fooled…this is still a story about John Marston and the Van der Linde gang. Morgan was saved by Dutch Van der Linde when he was younger.

He stays with Dutch out of the feeling he owes him, allowing Arthur to become his right-hand man. However, a job in Blackwater goes bad and forces the gang to go on the run. They are being hunted down by the police of the day, the Pinkertons. Who will stop at nothing to end the gang. Arthur must find out what went wrong but also find out who Dutch truly is. Set in 1899, you’re put right in the middle of the Old West. The gameplay is phenomenal, the open-world is gorgeous, and there is always something to do. It is not hard to see why so many call it one of the greatest video games ever made.

Greatest Video Games Of The Console Era
[Image via Nintendo]

Legend of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild

  • Year of Release: 2017
  • Developer: Nintendo

How do you sell a new console to the masses? According to Nintendo, you put one of the main exclusive titles out there but make sure it becomes one of the greatest video games ever made. Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was going to happen, new console or not. Zelda developers heard fans when they said they wanted to see Link play in a much larger sandbox that differed from the rest in the series. Phew, Nintendo truly delivered on that. While you are given instruction and told what tasks need to be done, the direction you are given is minimal.

Nintendo allows you to explore this absolutely beautiful, breathtaking world freely. Developers overhauled the physics engine for the series, making sure each detail worked smoothly. The team even brought in Monolith Soft, who helped to design the landscapes and typography. The story takes place at the end of the Zelda timeline, with Link randomly waking up from a hundred-year slumber. He must save the Kingdom of Hyrule from its evil ruler, Calamity Ganon. The next installment in the Breath of the Wild series is due to come out in 2022.

Greatest Video Games Of The Console Era
[Image via CD Projekt Red]

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

  • Year of Release: 2015
  • Developer: CD Projekt Red

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is considered by all who played it as one of the single greatest video games they ever came across in their gaming life. It is so impactful that other games based their game on how the Witcher series handled things. That includes other popular IPs, such as the latter Assassins Creed series of games. Of course, the first two games are based on The Witcher novels written by Andrzej Sapkowski and the third is no different. Players are given a roleplaying game that sets them in the middle of a fantasy world based on Slavonic mythology.

You control Geralt of Rivia, a monster-slaying mercenary known as a Witcher. Geralt must do his job wherever he goes all while searching for his adopted daughter. She is on the run from the Wild Hunt, a motif used in folklore that connects to a “soul-raving” chase of some type. Geralt uses magic to help him on his mission as well as his sword-wielding skills. You’ll even get the chance to get to one of three endings, which will be based on how you played the game. Each choice truly matters as it’s all key to your narrative.

Where do we find this stuff? Here are our Sources:

Sony Interactive Entertainment

Nintendo

SEGA

Microsoft

Electronic Arts

Activision

Rockstar Studios

2K Games

Bethesda Game Studios

Naughty Dog

Sucker Punch Productions

Bungie

Xbox Game Studios

Retro Games

Hello Games

Rocksteady Games

WB Games

NetherRealm Studios

CD Projekt Red

Insomniac Games

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