What a long and strange trip it has been in the realm of console gaming. What started out as blips and beeps with pixels seizure-ing across the screen (not a real word, I know), has blossomed into basically interactive movies. We have seen the arrival and the demise of so many consoles, it is hard to even name them all off the top of one’s head. I will be listing the 5 best consoles to actually own and not be embarrassed about. Systems that have copious amounts of games that have depth and feeling to them. Games that you don’t just play through once and sell back to Gamestop at a rip-off price in a week. Epic journeys with characters you love and can’t stop dreaming that you were actually them, experiencing the adventures first hand. I show you now, the 5 best consoles with games actually worth playing.
5. Microsoft Xbox 360
Sure this system has a ton of first-person shooters, but so does the Gaystation 3. What happened during the SNES/Genesis war is happening again with the 360 and the PS3, but to a lesser extent. The 360 is getting the same games as the PS3 but is also getting more exclusives that just out-class the PS3 ones, as a collective whole. Sure you can get your CoD fix on both systems, but the 360 has Halo 3, a game millions play everyday religiously. I don’t even care about FPS’s but when I play Halo 3 it’s non-stop. The 360 also has whole slew of other exclusives as well that just slightly out-does it’s competitors. Sure people can joke about the Red Ring of Death. Sure you can bash having to pay for it’s Live service. You can’t argue at how successful it is though. A system that has killer exclusives, amazing online play, and almost every huge game it’s peers have… that sounds like a must own to me.
4. Nintendo Gameboy Advance
It is a hand-held, sure, but you show me a system that has more games worth playing, that I didn’t list after this, and I will tell you that you are a liar. I’ll probably bang your dog too. Not only does this system have it’s own exclusive games that kick ass, it even had ports of awesome SNES games. It has Advance Wars. It has like a bazillion Final Fantasy’s. Tactics Ogre, Blackthorne, pretty much every game worth having from the original NES, Castlevanias, Harvest Moon, my favorite Zelda game, Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, the Megaman Zero games, Pokemon Emerald, etc etc… This tiny system packs a HUGE punch when it comes to quality. I still play GBA games from time to time because a lot of them are just that good. I mentioned this in another article a couple days ago but will mention it again; I played nothing but GBA games in my shiny new 1st gen DS for about 8 months until the DS games actually had the same quality as the GBA ones. How about that kaka-doodie, huh? That’s like buying a Ps2 and only playing original Playstation games on it… Oh wait…
3. Sony Playstation 2
Sony used to be a leader in the gaming industry instead of a washed up joke like it is now. The Playstation 2 was the epitome of state of the art console gaming. There were no competitors. No one to rival the throne of Sony, even against a system that was technically superior all around. The PS2 did everything that there was to do at the time right (if you overlook the little fiasco they had with launch consoles *cough*). Massive games like Gran Tursimo 3 and Final Fantasy X solidified it’s place in history as an immovable force at the top. Once games like Grand Theft Auto 3 came around, King Shit of the Ka-ka Tribe was here to stay, as king.
If you take a look at the list of top-selling Ps2 games, you will see why it belongs on this top 5 list. Other awesome games like the King of Fighters bundles, Capcom vs SNK 2, Ico, Shadow of the Colossus, Marvel vs Capcom 2, Silent Hill 3, the Shadow Hearts series, Tokyo Xtreme Racer 3 (Fuck you, that game rapes), Disgaea and the other Nippon Ichi Software tactics RPG games further justify the purchase of a ps2, even now.
2. Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES)
This is my childhood. This console bored it’s grey plastic phallus deep into my little 6 year old ass and told me it loved me. I believed it and how could I not? This system was gaming. Sega tried really hard but couldn’t top this motherfucker. Every game that came out for both systems, the SNES did better. No contest. It had more buttons, more class, and way more fun games. You want the better home versions of Mortal Kombat 1, 2, and 3? SNES was your only option. So what if there was no blood and Subzero didn’t rip your head off in MK1? I liked his fatality better in the SNES version, even if he didn’t really hit his opponent. Not to mention it played better than the crappy Genesis version.
Other note-worthy games include: Street Fighter 2, Uniracers, Mechwarrior, Final Fantasy 3 (officially known as 6), Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, Tetris Attack, Super Mario World, Uniracers, Street Fighter Alpha 2, Chrono Trigger, Blackthorne, Out of This World, Sunset Riders, Earthworm Jim, the Megaman X’s, Megaman 7, NBA Jam: TE, King of the Monsters, the Donkey Kong Countries, Castlevania 4, Actrasier, Final Fight, Gradius 3, Lufia 1 and 2, R-type… I can really go on but if you really want to know what you are missing, this list of the 100 best SNES games might help you understand better. I still play games like Tales of Phantasia (english language hack), Castlevania 4 and Dracula X, Megaman X, and Aero Fighters on ZSNES all the time.
Last but not least is…
1. Sony Playstation
There is no other system, save for maybe the Neo Geo, that makes me more aroused when I think about gaming memories. This system pretty much ushered in the “gotta have it” console game sensation. It did it well too. Blockbusters and now legends like Final Fantasy 7 were born here. Solid Snake became a household name here. Ridiculously innovative gaming was made popular here. Intelligent Qube, a game so overlooked but so fucking brilliant and fun, was released here. This system also popularized RPG’s. Final Fantasy 7, 8, and 9, The Legend of Dragoon, Chrono Cross, Final Fantasy Tactics, The under-rated Tactics Ogre, Tales of Phantasia, Alundra, Parasite Eve, Wild Arms, Vagrant Story, Xenogears(!), Valkyrie Profile(!), Suikoden, Vandal Hearts, etc… SO many amazing stories to experience, countless hours of quality entertainment. Gran Turismo 2, the real father of how racing games present themselves now, was here. Resident Evil, one of the biggest names of gaming, was here as well.
Almost every game series you play now, originated on the original Playstation. A lot of other quality games that you may have never heard of, are also found on the original Playstation. Tomba? You better believe that quirky little game was here. Tomba 2 is even better. Silent Hill made me shit myself when I was like 13. The Playstation also popularized alternative “mascot” games. Crash Bandicoot wasn’t a product of Sony unlike Mario or Sonic are products of their respective system’s owners. Crash made way for other buddy animal plat-formers. Tomb Raider was only on the Playstation and made way for video game sex symbols. One of the best games of all time, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, can be found here. It was also found on the Sega Saturn, but literally no one bought that so who cares? Not me. I was too busy playing my fucking Playstation 1. Twisted Metal was actually good on this system. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2, the best skating game ever, can be found here. Almost every game series today owes the Playstation everything.
Gaming as we know it today owes the original Playstation everything. It really was and is the best system. Ever.
If anyone has any problems with this list or if you want to talk to me about how much ass any game on those systems above kicked, hit me up on AIM: Scaldinspaldin. I will be more than willing to talk to you. Maybe I should get a site specific email… hmm…