Wednesday, August 31, 2011

My Generation's Future Nostalgic Games (Guest Article by Matt Petras)

As a young gamer who spends a lot of time watching gaming vlogs on Youtube, listening to gaming podcasts, and other things of that matter, I get subjected to a lot of older people reminiscing over games of their childhood. Super Mario Bros. 3, Mega Man 2, The Legend of Zelda, Sonic the Hedgehog, Pac-Man: They go on and on. This got me thinking: What are my generation's nostalgic games going to be? What games are MY generation going to tell their kids about and rummage through their garages to find?

I have created a list of the top ten games that will most likely be my generation's most nostalgic games, throughout childhood and teenage years. These games are not what I think I'm going to look back on, but rather my generation collectively. I'm 15, soon to be in 10th grade, so let's just say today's High School crowd. Within the next couple years this may change just a bit, but I think that this list is going to stay rather unchanged.

#1: 7th Generation Call of Duty Games
Can I hear a "Mr. Obvious!"? Call of Duty hit the teenage demographic and it hit it hard. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare was by far the biggest first-person-shooter to release after Halo 3. It seemed as though if you were a teenager back in 2007, if Halo 3 didn't hook you, Call of Duty 4 did: Many got addicted to both. And if you hadn't tried either of them yet, your friends were begging you to. Once Activision cast its rod with Call of Duty bait, most of the teenage fish kept biting over and over again with World at War, Modern Warfare 2, Black Ops, and, after November 8th, most likely Modern Warfare 3.

Critical Highlights: Perfect review scores from GameInformer, Official Xbox Magazine, and more; Mark Bozon on Modern Warfare 2: " of the best first-person shooters out there..."
Sales Highlights: Black Ops is in 1 out of 8 US Households; Modern Warfare 2 made over 550 million dollars within the first five days of release

#2: Grand Theft Auto Series
When I was making this list, I almost forgot about Grand Theft Auto: Silly me! Grand Theft Auto was very appealing to guys around my age because, when the PS2 GTA's were coming out, we were still kids: Not teenagers yet. "There's a game where we can deal drugs, kill tons of people, and steal cars?! Count me in, but please don't tell my mom!" Other than the obvious appeal of playing a naughty video game, open-world games seemed to hit a sweet-spot for kids around my age. Not just the PS2 titles, but I think GTA4 as well as the GTA games on PSP are also going to be rather nostalgic for my peers down the line.

Critical Highlights: Perfect scores for GTA3 from Eurogamer, G4 TV, Official US Playstation Magazine, and more; Hilary Goldstein of IGN: "Without question, Grand Theft Auto IV is the best game since Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time."
Sales Highlights: 158, 000 units sold in first month for GTA Liberty City Stories on PSP; GTA Vice City has sold 17.5 million unites (as of March 2008)

#3: 7th Generation Halo Games
Being the first home console of the 7th Generation, the Xbox 360 was off to a good start. It was more powerful than any other console on the market, and had a very well-received online infrastructure. The PS3 was priced out of the market, Wii's were too hard to find, and Halo 3 was coming to the console. Halo 3 released and was a huge hit, both commercially and critically. Halo 3 was the first major first-person-shooter of this generation, and the general consensus is that it's very well-made to boot. The online multiplayer was what really hooked teens, and what kept them buying new Halo's as they released.

Critical Highlights Perfect scores for Halo 3 from GamePro, G4 TV, 1UP and more; Chris Watters from Gamespot: "...Halo: Reach is a towering achievement that delivers an enormous amount of engaging content that players will no doubt be enjoying for years to come."
Sales Highlights 170 million dollars made off on Halo 3 on day one; 2 million units of Halo ODST sold within first 24 hours

#4: Wii Sports/Kinect Sports/Sports Champions
Remember how huge the Wii was when it came out? "You wave your hand with the controller and the game picks up your movement?! Crazy!" Everybody wanted to try out the Wii, and the first game that most people tried was Wii Sports. The Wii and Wii Sports did so well, that the competition took note, with Microsoft creating the Kinect and Sony creating the Move. When you tried out the Kinect, you probably played Kinect Sports first, and if you tried out the Move, you almost certainly played Sports Champions. Motion Control has become, by far and large, the most successful new idea of this generation of consoles, and these three games showed people why.

Critical Highlights: Arthur Gies of IGN on Kinect Sports: "As an example of what Kinect can do, and as a point of entry for gamers and casuals alike, Kinect Sports delivers an easily accessible but surprisingly nuanced game."; 9/10 from Nintendojo for Wii Sports
Sales Highlights: Kinect Sports has sold 3 million units worldwide, as of August 19th, 2011; the Wii has sold 87.57 million units worldwide, each console including Wii Sports

#5: Spyro/Crash Games on PS1
The first home console I ever owned was a PS1. For most of my classmates, the PS1 may not have been their first, but it was certainly one of their firsts. And the two series that appealed to my demographic at the time the most were Spyro and Crash. These two action-platformers were colorful, kiddie, and well-respected. My classmates still to this day talk about their love for these two series and their lust for a true sequel for either series. The Spyro and Crash games are the Super Mario Bros. of my generation.

Critical Highlights: Perfect scores for Spyro: Year of the Dragon from GamePro, Official US Playstation Magazine, and more; Johnny Ballgame from Gamepro on Crash Bandicoot: Warped: "If you own a PlayStation, you're a fool if you don't buy this game!"
Sales Highlights: The Crash Bandicoot sereis has sold 34.4 million units on the PS1; The Spyro the Dragon series has sold 20 million units

#6: Jak and Daxter/Sly Cooper/Ratchet and Clank
When the PS2 was in its prime time (first 5 or 6 years), people my age were in the 9-12 range. The Jak and Daxter, Sly Cooper, and Ratchet and Clank games were geared right at that age demographic, and they did very well. Pull a male, high school student out at random and I guarantee they've played a game from one of those three series on the PS2. Many have probably played games from two of the series, some all three. These action-platformers were just mature enough to be raised above "kiddie" to be "cool" in the minds of my peers. I often hear my classmates talk about these games even today.

Critical Higlights Perfect score from Official US Playstation Magazine for Ratchet and Clank; Perfect score from FHM for Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy
Sales Highlights All three Sly Cooper games received a "Greatest Hits" re-release; Ratchet and Clank: Up Your Arsenal sold 207, 500 units within first month

#7: Tony Hawk/Skate Series
Tony Hawk was the first skateboarding series that mattered. The series was a success with games across numerous platforms, such as the PS1, PS2, PS3, Xbox 360, Wii, PC, and Game Boy Advance. Skateboarding hits the 10-17 age group, so naturally it's the roughly the same for the Tony Hawk games. Many of my peers got addicted to the Tony Hawk games on the PS1 and PS2 in particular: I, myself have memories of playing the games at a friend's house and having a blast. The Skate series was the next big thing for skatboarding, with a revolutionary dual-stick control scheme. Once Tony Hawk got old, teens and kids moved onto Skate. I still have friends who love to play the Skate games, and even I had a good time with the first Skate.

Critical Highlights: Perfect review scores from Gamepro, Gaming Age, and more; Tony hawk's Pro Skater 2 on PS2 received perfect review scores from Gamespot, Games Radar, and more
Sales Highlights: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3 was the third-best selling PS2 game of Novemeber, 2001; Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 sold 5.3 million copies by 2007

#8: Guitar Hero/Rockband
The three Guitar Hero games on PS2 became successful quickly after they released simply because of how original they were. There was nothing else like the the plastic guitar-strumming music-rhythm gameplay that the games provided. Rock Band was just as successful, adding drums and vocals to the mix alongside bass and guitar. My generation will look back on the battle between Guitar Hero and Rock Band, super-difficult songs like Through the Fire and Flames, and good times playing the games with friends fondly.

Critical Highlights: Perfect review scores from 1UP and G4 TV, among others; Hilary Goldstein on Rock Band 2: " game fans would be absolutely crazy not to buy Rock Band 2"
Sales Highlights: Guitar Hero 3 is the best-selling US video game since 1995; Rock Band DLC sports over 28 million downloads as of December 2008

#9: Super Smash Bros. Series
Like the GTA series, this is another one I nearly forgot. While the N64 original may be a bit too old for my generation, Super Smash Bros. Melee and Brawl were a big hit for my peers and I. If you owned a Gamecube, you owned and were addicted to Super Smash Bros. Melee: Simple as that. The hype leading up to Brawl was overwhelming, and the final product didn't disappoint. Smash Bros. is, at least to me, the ultimate multiplayer game.

Critical Highlights: Perfect review scores from Nintendo Power, Gaming Age, G4 TV, and more; Matt Cassamassina on Brawl: "one of the great multiplayer titles of the generation and simply not to be missed."
Sales Highlights: Melee is the best-selling Gamecube game; Brawl sold over 500 million units on day one

#10: World of Warcraft
I know a lot of people around my age that play WoW: They ADORE the game. They pay monthly for it and never complain. They're close to exploding when each new patch for the game releases. And you know what everyone else's reaction to the game is?: "Ha, that game is so nerdy!". Making fun of World of Warcraft is just as prevalent as the people who play it. Because of this, World of Warcraft is a game that will never leave the minds of my Generation.

Critical Highlights: Perfect review scores from G4 TV, Gamespy, Gameshark, and more for original World of Warcraft; Dustin Quillen from 1UP on WoW Cataclysm: "...I'm enjoying Cataclysm quite a bit -- more so than any other Warcraft expansion to date, in fact."
Sales Highlights: 8.6 retail units sold in US for all versions of World of Warcraft, as of July 2009; 4.7 million copies sold of Cataclysm within first month

Honorable Mentions:
Uncharted Series
Gears of War Series
Left 4 Dead Series
Super Mario 64
Super Mario Sunshine
Little Big Planet
God of War Series
Mario Kart Series

This is a highly-debatable topic, so please, sound off in the comments with your take!

This article is a guest submission by video game blogger Matthew "matt456p" Petras. If you enjoyed this article, please be sure to check him out at the following sites:

His Blog:




1 comment:

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