What are your top 10 best games of all time?

I was just wondering: what are your top 10 games? If you had to choose, what games are really special to you: influencing your imagination the most?

Some may be nostalgic and most don’t have to have the most complex amazing story I’m sure:

My list:

1.Panzer Dragoon Saga/PD Series

Just a blend of mystery fast paced joyful battles and beautiful graphics for the Saturn! The best looking game on the Saturn and I believe this surpassed FF7 at the time! You know it’s my top game when I devoted an entire F’n website to its legacy!

2.Skies of Arcadia

I love the characters, gorgeous painstakingly detailed graphics, story and wonderful world you explore!

3.Chrono Trigger/Chrono Cross (counting this as one)

This was my first RPG! I’ve grown very attached to these characters over the years!

4.Brave Fencer Musashi

A very whimsical charming action RPG. It has wonderful music, a heartwarming story and engaging, varied gameplay!

5.Final Fantasy 10

I think this FF tells one of the best stories. To me these characters felt natural even though some people can’t stand Tidus, I thought he was the most believable one of them all! I think all of the characters have good chemistry.

6.The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time/Majora’s Mask

This was a game ahead of it’s time and I just love Zelda puzzles!

7.Nights Into Dreams

Just full of color and imagination. I really adore this games visual presentation and unique gameplay!

8.The Granstream Saga

This is one of my nostalgic games. I played it for the first time with an old friend. And even now I
still love the world and characters and music of this game.

9.Mystical Ninja Goemon N64/Goemon’s Great Adventure

This game just filled my mind with Japanese eye candy! The levels are so imaginative and the platforming and boss fights are so fun! I also really enjoy the very upbeat trance inducing music!

10.Sonic CD

This Sonic felt a bit edgier; maybe a bit darker with the added American OST. I also liked how Sonic was designed in the anime intro and ending. I think this look fits him best and wish they would make a sequel…

Honorable mentions:

  1. XenoGears
  2. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
  3. Beyond Good and Evil
  4. Shenmue 2
  5. Shadow of the Colossus/ICO
  6. Okami
  7. Mana series
  8. Breath of FIre 3/Breath of FIre 4
  9. Legend of Legaia
  10. Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean
  11. Mass Effect Trilogy
  12. Sonic 3 & Knuckles
  13. Journey
  14. The Longest Journey
  15. Ys series
  16. Super Mario RPG Legend of the Seven Stars
  17. Terranigma
  18. Metroid Prime Trilogy

Great topic! I do love a good list, and keep a record of my games on my GameFAQs account:

  1. Panzer Dragoon Saga
  2. The Last of Us
  3. The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind
  4. Shenmue II
  5. Shining Force III sc1
  6. Half Life 2
  7. Halo 2
  8. Portal 2
  9. Gears of War 2
  10. Mass Effect 3

Honourable mentions:

Sonic 2
Halo Combat Evolved
Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory
Tomb Raider (1996)
The Walking Dead (Telltale)
Saints Row 2

Numbers 1 and 2 were pretty straight forward. TESIII, S2, and SF3 have always been 3-5 but the order changes all the time. 6-8 was pretty easy but 9-10 could’ve been anything from the honourable mentions list! I went for Gears 2 mainly because of the memories I have of playing with friends, and ME3 because it was epic, emotional, and explosive!

Hell, Mass Effect slipped my mind! Def. On my honorable mentions!

  1. Boulder Dash
  2. Virtua Fighter 2
  3. Azel / Panzer Dragoon Saga
  4. Tomb Raider
  5. R-Type
  6. Sky Odyssey
  7. JetSetRadioFuture
  8. Stunt Car Racer
  9. Joust
  10. Shadow of the Colossus

Or close enough, I value a lot of different kinds of gaming experiences, so my list tends to represent the best of genres I guess. Shadow of the Colossus I wasn’t sure about for a while but it was too personal a thing, really affected me even if only for a short period. Games like R-Type, Stunt Car Racer, Tomb Raider and Joust are more objective in a sense, they are marvels and milestones of the art form Itself. Otherwise it’s about the pure personal fun quotient. A couple more recent games that could be in the running are Portal and Braid, and lots of honorable mentions like Phantasy Star Online, Street Fighter 2 (or more like the original Super), Elite and Ballblazer.

I also have two stock disclaimers, first is that as a series Panzer Dragoon is in a class of its own. And Tetris transcends categorization, it just doesn’t feel fair to compare it to anything else, it is literal perfection.

For what it was, it’s amazing how unique Shadow of the Colossus was! Why hadn’t anyone made a game where you fought giants? Well, I guess never on that scale before! I noticed it started a trend of copycats which had blatant influences such as:

Castlevania Lords of Shadow (Fought an Ice Giant)

Magin and the Forsaken Kingdom (A giant followed you around/felt like ICO)

Darksiders (Rode a horse through a Post Apocalyptic land)

Blood of Bahamut (Fought Giants)

Prince of Persia (xbox360) (Had to resurrect the girl just like in SOTC)

Legend of Zelda Skyward Sword (Fought The Imprisoned giant monster)

And those are just the ones I remember off the top of my head…any others?

I think SotC could have been inspired by an early promotional showing of Galleon, an unfortunately very obscure game by Toby Gard, who is credited as the creator of Lara Croft - the character is his design, I think he had a profound influence on the original Tomb Raider game design as well. But the grappling mechanic and even climbing on a giant enemy and stabbing it in the head/neck are seen, sadly the game suffered development hell and was very delayed and I think never really measured up to his vision for it.

This was the one, I was rather obsessed with it for years of waiting:


I’m not sure if I can really name ten games. I do have a few games that really stand out for me:

  • NiGHTS into Dreams: I’m not sure how to explain it, but the combination of the colorful dream world, the evolving music and the gameplay combined to form a gameplay experience that was simply unique. I never played anything like this ever since and I’m not sure if I ever will.

  • Ecco: The Tides of Time: this is the game that made me realize that stories in videogames could be taken seriously. It featured a time-traveling dolphin fighting against aliens, and yet as ridiculous as that sounds, it somehow worked perfectly. It’s a challenging game with a haunting soundtrack (the Mega Drive soundtrack, not the Sega CD one). It ends on a cliffhanger that remains unresolved, and I’m still waiting for Ecco 3.

  • The Longest Journey: it’s good to see this game mentioned in this thread! TLJ is simply the best click&point adventure game I’ve ever played. As remarkable as the story and the world(s) in the game are, it’s the character of April Ryan that really makes it one of the best games I’ve ever played. As far as I’m concerned she’s the best female character ever featured in a video game. By the end of the game April had become more than just a video game character, and more like a friend. You had really been on a long journey together with her, seen so many different places and encountered so many different people. This is something that couldn’t be conveyed in a book or movie. The sequel Dreamfall couldn’t recapture the magic of the first game, and while Dreamfall: Chapters (which I still backed on Kickstarter) is better than Dreamfall, it can’t reach the heights of the first game. There are various reasons for that, but it’d take a while to explain.

  • Gravity Rush: this game has a lot of flaws, and halfway through I almost wanted to quit playing it, yet by the time I reached the end my opinion had changed completely. The game’s unique world and the brilliant gameplay mechanic that let’s you “fall” through the sky instead of fly makes it a joy to just fly around and explore the world. It’s moments like reaching the top of a tall tower and then staring down that creates a feeling of genuine freedom, as if there are no limits to where you can go. The story is not dissimilar from Panzer Dragoon in the sense that you get little answers to your questions, and I certainly hope more are answered in the sequel.

I’m not sure if there are other games that I’d place alongside these. Depending on the upcoming final episode, Life is Strange might join the list. Beyond Good & Evil, Halo: Combat Evolved and Jet Set Radio Future are games that I also regard highly, but they’re not quite in the same league.

So where’s Panzer Dragoon Saga? Honestly, my opinion on Panzer Dragoon Saga is changing. The ending of Panzer Dragoon Saga is starting to feel like it was needlessly dark. It treated Edge, who was up until then more than just our in-game avatar, as a disposable character to be tossed away in favor of the “real” main character. As similar as the story is to that of Nausicaä, the latter had a far superior ending. The choice made in the ending was the same, but the person making the choice in Nausicaä was the main character, and she was aware of the magnitude of the decision she was making. Edge on the other hand had no clue. Nor did we. Panzer Dragoon Saga’s story is like the world featured in it: it didn’t care about the characters living in it.

So it’s interesting that my opinion is not dissimilar from Sharespeare here, in the sense that Panzer Dragoon Orta may be my favorite Panzer Dragoon game. While it’s not a particularly good story, it at least stays focused on Orta and doesn’t pull a shock ending for no good reason. And as a rail shooter, the game is without equal.

It’s difficult to come up with a precise list, but here’s my shot at it. My tastes are always evolving. If you’d asked me seven years ago, I would have provided a significantly different list. Indeed, I did when @UrbanReflex created a similar topic in 2008.

These games don’t necessarily represent the games that have provided the most play time or (indeed, many respect my time by being short and focused) or even replay value. But they have left a lasting impression.

  1. Panzer Dragoon Saga
  2. Journey
  3. Shadow of the Colossus
  4. NiGHTS into Dreams
  5. Skies of Arcadia
  6. Sonic 3 & Knuckles
  7. Shining Force III Scenario I
  8. The Last of Us
  9. Ikaruga
  10. Panzer Dragoon II Zwei

All of my top 10 games were first party games, published by either Sega or Sony. I’m not sure if that’s a coincidence or says something about my taste in gaming.

Honourable mentions:

  • Rocket Knight Adventures
  • Ico
  • Dark Savior
  • Halo 1 and 2
  • Half-Life 2
  • Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
  • Shining Force II
  • Tetris
  • SimCity 2000
  • The Misadventures of Flink
  • Braid

Here is my top 10 even if it was difficult for me to only retain 10 games :smile:

  1. Panzer Dragoon Saga
  2. Shadow of the Colossus / ICO
  3. Shining Force III scenario 1, 2 & 3*
  4. Vagrant Story
  5. Final Fantasy VII
  6. Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
  7. Chrono Cross
  8. God Of War II
  9. Zelda Ocarina Of Time
  10. Final Fantasy XII

Concerning Shining Force III, for me all 3 scenarios count as one game.

I’d completely forgotten about that topic! Let’s review how my list has changed in those seven short years (it’s important to note that my 2008 list is numbered backwards for some reason - probably a caveat of the forum software change).

Number 1 is still the same, despite not having played it between lists. It’s unsurprising but still nice to see that so many others here list it as their top game.

Number 2 is obviously new, and drops S2, SF3 and TES3 down once place. The order of those three was also different in 2008 - told you they swap around!

I played Half Life 2 in late '08 / early '09 so that explains it’s belated entry to the list. It knocked Halo 2 down one, but the final three have all been released since the last list was made (Gears 2 being only one month later).

Although I’ve always felt like great games aren’t made so frequently these days, actually three of my top ten have been released in the last four years. Another six are all over ten years old, so I think perhaps my perspective on this has just been wrong - Great games are still being made, I think maybe I just am more selective with what I play due to having less time to play them.

I’ve discovered a few quirks like this. I suspect what happened is that the list was converted from a plain text list to a Markdown list when we changed forum software. In Markdown, the list item number isn’t significant, it just requires a number followed by a full stop at the start of the line. It was designed this way so that lazy people don’t have to reorganise all of their numbers if they add a list item to the middle of a long list.

If you want to write an descending numbered list, you could use raw HTML like this:

<ol reversed>
  <li>The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind</li>
  <li>The Last of Us</li>
  <li>Panzer Dragoon Saga</li>

I think a large part of that perception comes down to the fact that there aren’t as many risks being made (outside of the indie scene). You get a lot of very similar games. And due to their larger budgets, many games now have a design-by-committee feel to them. There’s more blandness, but a larger map also presents more room for gems to found. You have to look harder to find them.

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I also forgot about The Longest Journey! I have been a fan of this series for a while now (even though it’s not as influential as my first list). I also thought the sequels didn’t quite live up to the grandiose nature of the first story. April Ryan’s story was a bit more developed and personal with all of the lore of the two worlds: Stark and Arcadia unfolding around her…

I did enjoy playing the first chapter of Dreamfall Chapters after waiting for an eternity…!

Hey @Geoffrey_Duke, I’m curious to learn what your top 10 games are.

In no particular order:

Donkey Kong County 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest - Best platformer I ever played. Never gets old. Gunstar Heroes and Ristar etc are great fun to play, but DKC2 always feels as fresh as the day I first played it.

Ninja Gaiden Black - I played for 1,000 hours and uploaded stuff to Youtube. I held the WR high score for 2 months. Those memories aren’t going away any time soon.

Touhou Eiyashou: Imperishable Night - The game I played when we got back from the hospital after my dad passed away. It was the only thing I knew would help me through it.

Worms Armageddon - Best multiplayer game ever, first foray into online play.

Persona 4 Golden - (insert 5000 word essay here about the mental issues this game helped me get over)

The Binding of Isaac - Current addiction.

Undertale - PLAY IT. I could write forever about it but not without spoiling one of the best gaming experiences in years.

God of War - The game that made me get back into gaming again, and formed the background of one of my favourite vacations ever.

Super Mario Galaxy (1&2) - The reason to own a Wii.

Panzer Dragoon Saga - Helped me make the closest friends I have. Oh, and the game is pretty good too.

Honourable mention: Sonic 3 & Knuckles.

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It has been some time since I thought about this, so, let’s go!

I’ll start with my top four in no particular order. The top four meaning I can jump into these games with full comfort and ease of play. I know them very well, having spend many, many hours playing them. They are life changers and I have done a lot of fan art of. I play them to relax and know I will have a good time.

  1. Phantasy Star IV - While Phantasy Star II has a special place in my heart as being my first jrpg, it was this game that really sucked me in. I was always looking forward to the story progression and comic book style cut scenes.

  2. Ecco the Dolphin - The Dark Souls of my childhood. This was a difficult game that kept me very busy. I could not begin to describe how accomplished I felt when I finally completed this game, not ever using a single cheat. This game also changed my life in direction of art and the friends that I would meet in my adult years.

  3. Panzer Dragoon Saga - Don’t really need to talk on this one. Definitely a life changer for me.

  4. Dark Souls - The newest on this list. This was the game that made me fall in love with playing video games all over again. Difficult but fun. I loved the hidden story that you had to figure out just by inspecting the items, environments, etc.

  5. Chrono Trigger - I have fond memories playing this game, and I still play it every year around the winter months.

  6. Final Fantasy VI - easily my favorite Final Fantasy. The newer ones (VII and beyond) just cannot compare (Okay, maybe XII).

  7. Witcher 2 - Fun combat, good characters, and a dark world that is fun to explore. I am also a fan of the books!

  8. Xenogears - My favorite RPG from the PS1. A definite must play.

  9. Elder Scrolls III - Morrowind - Lost many hours of my life due to this game, and I still greatly prefer it over Oblivion and Skyrim.

  10. Shadow of the Colossus - Don’t think I need to explain this one. <3

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Yay! I love making lists!

In no particular order:

Yakuza Series
Phoenix Wright
NiGHTS/ Christmas NiGHTS
Daytona USA
The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
Persona 4 Golden
Chrono Trigger
Super Mario 64 DS
Pazner Dragoon Series

I don’t usually participate in top 10 lists, not because I don’t enjoy them or think they have value, but because it is difficult for me to decide what to include in my top 10 list. I think that I have to touch on single and multiplayer aspects as they influence my decisions with regards to order. For the most part as far as consoles go I was a Sega fan. I did get to play some great games from other systems.

  1. Panzer Dragoon Saga - The game that most made me want to be in another world. The humanity of the characters. Their struggle was easy to relate to. The world was convincing even with its futuristic nature. Not having access to this game would be heartbreaking. I want to be able to relive the game for years to come.

  2. Half-Life 2 - I almost want to strike this from my list just due to Valve’s ineptitude at completing this games story, but the fact that I get so angry that this series has not had a conclusion just shows how well I was hooked by the story and solid gameplay.

  3. Unreal - Walking out of your crashed ship on the first level of this game had me. Amazing graphics and atmosphere at the time. Minimal story was delivered through scattered messages. Something about this game left me wanting more…and I was thoroughly let down by the sequel. Unreal was also the first game I really got into multiplayer with aside from Duke Nukem and Doom 2 lan parties. The Unreal add-on UWAR was also my first experience playing. UWAR was also when I first started getting into online multiplayer. I played on a 56K connection and loved every minute of it. Graduated to DSL right when that was first available for UT and I was involved with the clan scene in UT right up until it faded away.

  4. Shining Force 1 and 2 - Simple but charming characters. A fun world that connects in a way to Greek/Roman mythology which is my favorite history period. I loved the strategy gameplay and I still replay these games today. SF1 and 2 are my favorites in the series.

  5. Witcher Series - Love the unique world and characters. The games are generally fun to play and explore. A much more mature and dark atmosphere than recent games of memory. I also thoroughly enjoyed the book series. I would rate these games higher if they didn’t stray slightly from events from the books and the at times silly romance options.

  6. Star Wars Kotor 1 and 2 (with Sith Lords mod of course) - I was still really into Star Wars and the now non-cannon books when I played through these games. Fantastic stories, fun gameplay. Really wish The Old Republic would have been Kotor 3 instead.

  7. Elder Scrolls Skyrim - The peak of the series for me. Solid, fun combat. Decent enough story and world. Spend over 130 hours exploring, questing, and just having fun.

  8. Sonic 2 - While I love 1, 3/Sonic and Knuckles, Sonic CD, nothing will compare with first getting a Sega Genesis and playing this game for two days straight. Phenomenal level design, atmosphere. This game just got the formula right.

  9. Lunar Silver Star Story - Eternal Blue was okay, but the first game in this series on the Sega CD was just so charming and fun to play. Great story, decent and challenging gameplay, there wasn’t much to dislike here.

  10. Mass Effect Trilogy - Great gamepay (prefered more RPG ME1 style), fantastic storyline right up until the end. This would have scored higher up my list if it wasn’t for the haphazard way they closed the third game in the series.

Honorable Mentions (in no particular order and I am sure I am missing some)

Star Wars Xwing vs Tie Fighter
Sonic 3 and Knuckles, Sonic CD, Sonic 1
Shadow of the Colossus
Ecco the Dolphin
Deus Ex - Almost broke the top 10
Zelda Links Awakening and A Link to the Past
Skies of Arcadia
Phantasy Star IV
Road Rash
Trine 1 and 2
CS (played from beta 6 all the way up until now with CS:GO, but after all these years I think I finally may have retired from playing. I am sick to death of Dust 2!)
Toejam & Earl
Streets of Rage
Phantasy Star Online
Virtua Fighter 2
SF2 Turbo
Guardian Heroes
Dragon Force
Beyond Oasis (Prefered this to the sequel Legend of Oasis)
Shenmue 1 and 2
Skies of Arcadia
Metroid Prime
Super Metroid