The Top Generation 5 Games Ever According to SnS - Part 1
by Sliders n' Socks




#218 - Tobal No. 1 (PS1)
Chosen by: Rhete

Rhete - A decent fighting game with Akira Toriyama designs and a great soundtrack. It's really too bad the sequel never came stateside.



#217 - Command & Conquer: Red Alert - Retaliation (PS1)
Chosen by: Zeloz

Zeloz - Funny thing about this game: I've never actually owned the Allied disc. But since Skirmish Mode on both discs are essentially the same (I'm assuming), the game may as well be just the Soviet disc. It's not a perfect RTS even considering its vintage; the only viable strategy seems to be "Zerg Rush or die" in many cases. But it plays surprisingly well on a controller, and god damn if the self-invented skirmishes my brother and I used to play didn't provide hours of entertainment. Multiplayer be damned.



#216 - Virtual Hydlide (SAT)
Chosen by: Pixel_Crusher

Pixel_Crusher - Back then, this game looked so realistic that I couldn't help but to feel immersed in its world but nowadays it just looks empty and depressing. While I don't think it's as bad as many people make it out to be, I do have to agree that it has clearly shown its age. Still, I believe it deserves praise for trying to set the bar so high in many aspects, even if it failed at most of them miserably.



#215 - Battle Arena Toshinden (PS1)
Chosen by: Rhete

Rhete - When this launched with the Playstation it was pretty mindblowing. I'd played Virtua Fighter in arcades, but a game that looks like it, at home? The future is now! As for the game itself, I mostly remember the music being awesome, and then the final boss music being toccata and fugue in d minor for some reason.



#214 - Medal of Honor (PS1)
Chosen by: Vanor Orion

Vanor Orion - Ya know how everyone complains about the campaigns in Call of Duty being nothing but spectacle these days, sound and fury signifying nothing? Well, it all started here. But unlike today, the developers that made Medal of Honor were interested in making a World War II game that was actually realistic and shit. The game had freakishly realistic AI, especially in their behavior (they'd even kick grenades back at you). Vietnam veteran, WW2 historian, and military adviser Dale A. Dye worked with the developers and taught them about espionage and combat tactics during World War 2, which you can see they clearly took to heart with the final result in this game.



#213 - Elevator Action Returns (SAT)
Chosen by: Miller

Miller - Short but sweet co-op action. They don't really make 'em like this anymore.



#212 - RPG Maker (PS1)
Chosen by: Voodoo Groove

Voodoo Groove - So primitive, yet so awesome. A decent lesson for all those kids who wanted to make them some RPGs. One day I shall complete you, Science Odyssey X: Quest for Love.



#211 - Castlevania: Legacy of Darkness (N64)
Chosen by: No

No - While many people weren't big fans of the N64 versions of Castlevania, I felt the Castlevania games on the N64 had the most atmosphere out of all the Castlevanias at the time. It provided me with a good set of scares at the time I played it (Close ups of vampire's faces freaked me out badly as a kid) The game and potential choices of what ending you could get were interesting as well. It was Castlevania the platformer combined with some decent bits of story here and there. Plus, there's a knight in full plate armor going around with a pistol shooting up monsters and saving children, not to mention a werewolf you get to play as first. Groovy.



#210 - Yoshi's Story (N64)
Chosen by: FreezingInferno

FreezingInferno - It ain't no Yoshi's Island, but it's cute and has a neat art style. What else do you want? Yeah, it's for kids and kind of simplified but it's still got a charm to it.



#209 - Mace: The Dark Age (N64)
Chosen by: Carmichael Micaalus

Carmichael Micaalus - A medieval fighter; a bunch of jerks fighting over a hell mace to be the biggest jerk of them all, I think. It was kind of neat, but a bit on the clunky side, and really rather depressing - whenever you lost, the game liked to tell you how your side was pretty much killed and it was all your fault, more or less.



#208 - Solar Eclipse (SAT)
Chosen by: AdmiralMaxtreme

AdmiralMaxtreme - Solar Eclipse is a pretty standard space rail shooter. The controls are a little jerky, but it's got some solid powerups, fairly decent (for the Saturn) graphics, and long, challenging levels with tons of branching paths. The radio communication with your fellow pilots uses actual live-action video, as do the between-level cutscenes, which provides for some unintentional comedy.



#207 - Alien Resurrection (PS1)
Chosen by: Pixel_Crusher

Pixel_Crusher - The guys over at Argonaut Software really nailed the atmosphere of the Alien movies with this game, one that you can't even find in the much (and always) superior Alien vs. Predator 2 for the PC. Unfortunately, the game itself can be unfairly difficult and nigh unplayable if you don't have a mouse, which makes this one of the few console games I'd rather play on a PC instead. Still, it's... better than Colonial Marines?



#206 - Alien Vs. Predator (JAG)
Chosen by: sunburstbasser

sunburstbasser - It's the only game anyone cares about from Atari's house cat. You take control of a Space Marine, an Alien, or a Predator, and navigate through a ship full of hostiles. The game is a beefed-up Wolfenstein type of game. All of the areas are the same height, and all of the corners are 90 degrees. No big open rooms, no varying heights. Where the game differs is that instead of using multiple levels, the whole game is linked together by elevators that take you to different floors. If you know where to go, the whole world is open to you. Each character has a different victory requirement (Save the alien queen, kill the alien queen, blow up the space ship), and all play differently. Despite being a cartridge game, it actually had some pretty long loading times when using the elevator when I played it.



#205 - Astal (SAT)
Chosen by: Rhete

Rhete - The Saturn was originally developed to be the ultimate 2D system, and Astal seems to be a direct result of that initial direction. Obviously gaming took a different path, and until recently Astal remained a curiosity that showed what games could have looked like if stayed down the 2D evolutionary path. Basically what I'm saying is Astal might not be that fun to actually play, but man is it pretty.



#204 - Three Dirty Dwarves (SAT)
Chosen by: AdmiralMaxtreme

AdmiralMaxtreme - This is a beat 'em up that has a lot going for it. You play as three (presumably unkempt) dwarves - They each have different abilities, you can change which one you're controlling at any time, and they also serve as your hit points. When all three get hit, you lose. However, you can revive a KO'd dwarf (or as the manual repeatedly says for some reason, 'dwarve') by slapping them, so you just need to make sure you revive them as soon as they get hit, which is easier said than done. The game has a neat, quirky aesthetic, hand-animated cutscenes, and really creative obstacles and enemies (like the weird guy who throws pit bulls at you). It's just unfortunate that it suffers from some pretty awful level design at times.



#203 - Tomb Raider II: Starring Lara Croft (PS1)
Chosen by: Pixel_Crusher

Pixel_Crusher - I only played this game for one reason: Locking Lara's butler inside the freezer. =D



#202 - Persona 2: Eternal Punishment (PS1)
Chosen by: Vanor Orion

Vanor Orion - This game makes the bottom of my list only because after all these years of owning it, I've never finished it (I'm very bad about procrastinating with games sometimes). That being said, the reason I snatched it up when I found it used at Software Etc (remember those?) years ago was because I'd read about the premise behind the game and it sounded interesting and different. What I got was a very refreshing RPG with its contemporary setting blended with sci-fi and fantasy elements, and a very cool premise based off of something abstract--rumors--literally influencing reality. Factor in the unique mostly non-teen protagonists, and the nifty bonus CD interview with the creators (who still look a million times classier than most of the people making games these days), and this game is a shoe in on my list, even if it's just near the bottom of it.



#201 - Hybrid Heaven (N64)
Chosen by: No

No - This game was one of the few unique RPGs on the N64, it was unique in the sense that the combat system was completely different from pretty much all other RPGs out there at the time. You learned moves by allowing your enemies to hit you with their moves, plus since you don't really have any weapons outside of consumable guns, you had to use your fists, feet, and even your head to punch out your enemies with all sorts of moves! Like giving an alien a piledriver for example! The story itself was simply okay, but I thought its theme was pretty good at the time.



#200 - Extreme-G (N64)
Chosen by: Carmichael Micaalus

Carmichael Micaalus - Futuristic motorcycle racer. While I don't remember too much about this one, I do remember the overall look to the game was nice, and so was the soundtrack.



#199 - Tekken 3 (PS1)
Chosen by: AdmiralMaxtreme

AdmiralMaxtreme - Tekken was a great series that, in my opinion, peaked with this entry. I had a lot of fun playing with Bryan Fury, although my brother would always beat me (damn you, Heihachi! The character, not my brother). A very solid fighting game, but I've always been more of a Street Fighter person, myself.



#198 - Castlevania (N64)
Chosen by: Pixel_Crusher

Pixel_Crusher - There's definitely something to be said about this game. While it's a far cry from Symphony's magnificence, you can't help but to give credit for the eerie atmosphere the entire game proportioned, no matter how flawed the gameplay was. The labyrinth with the chainsaw wielding frankenstein still creeps me out just thinking about it.



#197 - Doom (3DO/JAG/PS1/SAT)
Chosen by: sunburstbasser

sunburstbasser (Voted for Playstation) - Doom got ported to pretty much everything at some point. The Playstation version was a little unique. It dispensed with the original music in favor of a more ambient soundtrack. The sound effects were almost completely redone to add more depth, which makes the Cyberdemon's stomping sound much more ominous. The levels are taken from Doom and Doom II. The biggest change is that enemies from Doom II show up in the levels from the first game, as does the Super Shotgun. The graphics are taken almost completely from the original PC version, though seem to be touched up slightly. Nothing really original here, but a good entry in the series.



#196 - Quake II (PS1/N64)
Chosen by: Zeloz

Zeloz - I'm not so much into FPSs nowadays, but you never forget your first one, and Quake II was one hell of an introduction. Gritty, grimy, and plenty gory, the game makes for an effective period piece that embodies the grotesque and experimental zeitgeist of the mid-to-late 90s (or at least what my dumb babby brain remembers of it; I was in Kindergarten when this game came out, mind). My preference goes towards the PlayStation version for looking extra-gritty and having a rockin' soundtrack, and having mouse support helps too.



#195 - Re-Volt (PS1/N64)
Chosen by: AdmiralMaxtreme

AdmiralMaxtreme - This is a racing game with really fiddly, slippery controls, and that (understandably) turns a lot of people off. However, once you get comfortable with it, there's a lot on offer here. The vehicles are all RC cars, and there's Mario Kart-style weapons and powerups. The computer isn't much of a challenge, but it's a lot of fun trying to beat your best times on each course.



#194 - Cleopatra Fortune (PS1/SAT)
Chosen by: Pixel_Crusher

Pixel_Crusher - As an anime junkie, I just can't turn my head away from a moe kawaii desu-ne rendition of Queen Cleopatra. The game itself is a surprisingly good tetris variant, by Taito no less!



#193 - Clockwork Knight 2 (SAT)
Chosen by: Rhete

Rhete - Clockwork Knight 2 picks up right where the first game left off, literally. It ends up feeling more like a second half than a true sequel, but it's just as good as the original. Every time I hook up my Saturn I end up running through the two games back to back.



#192 - SaGa Frontier 2 (PS1)
Chosen by: Zeloz

Zeloz - Ahh, Akitoshi Kawazu. King of the "weird, but actually pretty neat" games. This is... kind of one of his games. Like, he only "produced" the thing, according to the manual credits. And playing it kind of gives the impression that he didn't have that much of a hand in it. The battle system stuff, things like limited-use weapons and gaining stats based on battle actions, seems Kawazu-esque enough. But the presentation and introductory story bits seem like something out of a Yasumi Matsuno game, with political power struggles abound and the story being told episodically, from the perspective of a historian looking back. The hand-painted aesthetic, along with the chill soundtrack from Masashi Hamauzu also gives the game a distinct atmosphere that sets it apart from other SaGa entries. It looks a lot better than that icky pre-rendered look Frontier 1 was sporting at least. Truth be told, the two distinct battle systems the game gives you has a bit of a learning curve, and the game is surprisingly brutal from the outset. But, hey, it's a Kawazu game! Sorta! With Matsuno elements, even though he probably never touched the thing.



#191 - Space Station Silicon Valley (N64)
Chosen by: Voodoo Groove

Voodoo Groove - Unique and bizarre, this one really caught my attention as a kid. So many crazy animals to control and experiment with, and I love how there's even a bit of ecology implemented. It's just such an odd game to describe, it's like a proto-3D puzzle platformer.



#190 - Winback: Covert Operations (N64)
Chosen by: No

No - It's the granddaddy of cover shooters as they are today! The game wasn't like other shooters at the time, it required you to be behind cover a decent amount of time due to the fact that health packs weren't around a lot and you had to go long distances to reach a checkpoint.



#189 - Worms Armageddon (PS1/N64)
Chosen by: sunburstbasser

sunburstbasser - The N64 version was my first exposure to Worms. The environments are goofy, the weapons are silly, and the game is loads of fun. If you have three friends, you can all play. I always set my voice to Soul Man, gotta have those James Brown voice clips. It doesn't have all the maps or other features that the PC version has, but it plays fine.



#188 - Road Rash (3DO/PS1)
Chosen by: Rhete

Rhete - One of the few games that made a 3DO worth having... until it inevitably got ported to the PS1. Visually amazing for the time with "photo-realistic" graphics, and loaded with 90s style that is embarrassing to look at now, Road Rash was simple, dumb fun.



#187 - Mario Tennis (N64)
Chosen by: AdmiralMaxtreme

AdmiralMaxtreme - Even though it's just another Mario sports game, this one deserves mentioning. It's really fun and easy to learn, there's a surprising amount of depth to the strategy (although you can still do pretty well by just smashing the ball repeatedly), and the ease of control allows for lots of long, tense rallies. This is a very good game, especially for multiplayer.



#186 - Konami Antiques: MSX Collection Ultra Pack (SAT)
Chosen by: Zeloz

Zeloz - I'm not gonna lie to you and say that all of games packaged here are quality. I'm not gonna lie and say half of the games have aged particularly well. Did you like Gradius on the NES? Well, here it is, now with only half the color, more primitive chiptunes and choppy scrolling! Also, because of how erratic enemies seem to pop in, the thing's somehow harder than before! Really, none of the games here are up to the quality Konami set for itself during it's NES years, mainly because these games were released on a weaker system, with some games even predating the NES.

And that's why the earlier 10-game MSX collections Konami put out on the PS1 aren't that great. Now, what if you were to put all three of said collections on one disc, and then only put it on the Saturn for some reason? Well, other than make it easier to import and play, you'd have a nice bundle of old, quirky Konami games that are still nice time wasters! And for those who thought the NES Gradius games were too easy, here's a whopping 5 Gradius games of a more difficult caliber, none of them completely resembling their Nintendo or Arcade counterparts! Yes, even Gradius 1's a little different, with an exclusive boneyard level thrown in the mix! It's definitely a case of quantity over quality, but this is probably the largest collection of old Japanese PC games for a 5th Gen console, and the good games are some legit good games.



#185 - Bomberman Hero (N64)
Chosen by: No

No - This bomberman was quite enjoyable due to the fact...I could actually jump in this Bomberman. Plus, it had various things you drove in some of the stages, plus I thought the plot wasn't too shabby at the time. Simple, but the plot worked. You threw bombs like Mario could throw fireballs!



#184 - Knockout Kings 2000 (PS1/N64)
Chosen by: AdmiralMaxtreme

AdmiralMaxtreme - This game masquerades as a realistic boxing simulator, with its roster of real-life boxers, unstylized art and real world venues. But there's really nothing realistic about the gameplay. There's lots of punching, special combos and huge power punches. The game occupies a weird space between totally straight, realistic boxing games and the cartoony action of something like Punch-Out!!.



#183 - Legend of Oasis (SAT)
Chosen by: Pixel_Crusher

Pixel_Crusher - While it's nowhere as good as the first one, it still managed to be one of the better and most atmospheric Zelda clones out there. To date, it's the first game I managed to sequence break without even realizing or using guides (the internet still wasn't a thing for me back then).



#182 - Road Rash 64 (N64)
Chosen by: sunburstbasser

sunburstbasser - I'm aware of a Playstation Road Rash that was apparently better, but I never played it. My best friend and I would play this game, trying to come up with the coolest stunts the admittedly limited engine could handle. Ramping over parcel trucks without a scratch and sticking pool cues in cop bikes are the great highlights.



#181 - Guardian War (3DO)
Chosen by: Rhete

Rhete - This was actually the first strategy RPG I ever played, and heck it probably introduced me to the concept of character creation, as all your units were generic looking characters that you had to name yourself. The 3D-ish environments were vast and added a sense of place and exploration as well, as opposed to the usual top down view strategy games usually go for. I still think this game holds up pretty well, having replayed the first few hours of it last year. It's pretty simple but oddly addictive and captivating.



#180 - Pia Carrot e Youkoso!! (PC-FX/SAT)
Chosen by: Zeloz

Zeloz - Yup, the only game on NEC's failed 32-bitter that is currently available in English is gettin' a spot on my list, god dammit. Suck it, Jaguar.

Anyway, this game's good, at least by 90s eroge standards. The idea is that, instead of actually enjoying your last summer break of high school, you're being put to work at your bizarrely named family restaurant (the titular "Pia Carrot"). Said restaurant has in it's employ a number of comely, eccentric personalities, and as a heterosexual eroge protagonist, your one goal is to hit dat. So, by building stats and shaping your faceless protagonist into a paragon of minimum-wage manliness, you work your way into the heart and other areas of your preferred waifu. Standard dating sim stuff, essentially.

I wouldn't put this on the list if it was just that, though.The game's got heart! And, wouldn't ya know, the writing isn't completely terrible and pandering! The characters, while not realistically proportioned, are at least realistically personified to a fair degree. And they have just the darnest way of wiggling right into your heartstrings. There's none of the outrageous scenarios set up as fronts just to meet love interests, or exploitative character abuse for the sake of wringing cheap tears out of players, tropes shockingly common in more contemporary games like this. The game's also surprisingly difficult, at least the first time through; it rewards having a target love interest in mind early in the game, rather than trying to be a mack daddy and get the harem ending. Fool! There is no harem ending. Only the despair of... going shopping with your younger sister. It's got one of the most adorable "bad" endings, I've gotta say.



#179 - Strider 2 (PS1)
Chosen by: FreezingInferno

FreezingInferno - Gosh, Strider is so cool. Even if his games are hard as hell. This one, at least, plays just like an arcade game. Right down to infinite continues and instant respawn. That might make it a little simple, but you've got a rad action platformer here. Plus 2D sprites running around on 3D platforms. The juxtaposition of it all alone is enough to raise an eyebrow, but the actual game part is good too.



#178 - Beetle Adventure Racing (N64)
Chosen by: sunburstbasser

sunburstbasser - Right about the time we got an N64, we rented Beetle Adventure Racing mostly because of the title. It really isn't a bad game either. All of the cars are the new-model Beetles, which isn't as cool as Ferraris or Zondas. It works OK though. I'll admit, I haven't touched this one in over a decade, and it likely isn't as good as I remember.



#177 - Colony Wars: Vengeance (PS1)
Chosen by: Rhete

Rhete - I don't remember much of this game, besides enjoying it a fair bit. I'm a sucker for sci-fi stuff, so fully 3D space combat was my jam. I wish they still made games like this.



#176 - Final Fantasy Chronicles (PS1)
Chosen by: Pitchfork

Pitchfork - The first official English release of Final Fantasy IV without the Easytype neutering and the Engrish-ish translation. Lord knows I got it the day it came out. Chrono Trigger with load times isn't much fun, but the beautiful animated cutscenes almost make up for it. I just wish they didn't throw in the revisionist nod to Chrono Cross at the end.



#175 - PaRappa the Rapper (PS1)
Chosen by: Zeloz

Zeloz - You're a rap dog-thing who learns Kung-Fu from an onion, then takes driving lessons from a moose. You presumably win the heart of your love interest flower-thing afterwards, but I'm apparently a terrible rap-driver.

Difficulty aside, this is one of the most charming, catchy, and just silly rhythm games outside of Rhythm Heaven, and I had a fit trying to beat that first level demo included on the demo disc that came with my PS1. The "2D paper characters in 3D space" aesthetic has also aged a little better than other, more polygon-heavy titles from this era.



#174 - Waialae Country Club: True Golf Classics (3DO/N64)
Chosen by: Carmichael Micaalus

Carmichael Micaalus - We got this game for our dad, but my brother and I had some fun with it as well. It's just your standard golf game, no power ups or anything like that. It was still a nice change of pace at times, though.



#173 - Warcraft II: The Dark Saga (PS1/SAT)
Chosen by: AdmiralMaxtreme

AdmiralMaxtreme - If this were the PC version it would be a lot higher, but as with most RTS's, the lack of a mouse really hurts it. Outside of the control scheme, though, this is an incredible game, and a landmark in the RTS genre. It's a game that's very challenging, but fair, and the Beyond the Dark Portal expansion cranks up the challenge tenfold. After all these years, I still haven't beaten the last human mission or the last two orc missions in the expansion, which are completely fucking ridiculous.



#172 - RayStorm (PS1)
Chosen by: sunburstbasser

sunburstbasser - The official sequel to Ray Force dispenses with the 2D sprites in favor of a full-rendered 3D world. It still uses the aiming reticule to attack enemies below your ship, but adds the option of shooting them with lightning. Ray Storm runs really smoothly, and enemies can fly under bridges or other scenery which really does give the game the visual depth intended.



#171 - Lucienne's Quest (3DO) / Sword & Sorcery (SAT)
Chosen by: Zeloz

Zeloz - Whatever mad localization deity willed this obscure and charming JRPG into English back in 1995, on the 3DO of all things, must've been crazy. Stranger still, the game has such a self-aware quirkiness and humor to it, you'd think it was an early Nippon Ichi title or something. But no, this came courtesy of Microcabin, the same guys who did Guardian War and a bunch of Japanese PC games no one's heard of. Once you get past the fact that the game runs at about 5 frames per second, you'll find a short and sweet JRPG with interesting characters, a sense of humor, and gameplay that somehow feels less dated than the first Suikoden.



#170 - Bug! (SAT)
Chosen by: AdmiralMaxtreme

AdmiralMaxtreme - This is one of the pre-Super Mario 64 attempts at making a 3D platformer, only they clearly didn't think that was possible, so they made what was really a 2D platformer in a 3D world. For the most part, the levels are all basically 2D levels that are folded around to look 3D. But all that aside, this is still an entertaining game with a lot of charm. The "framing device" is that the hero, Bug!, has finally landed a part in a major video game, and everything plays out like he's in a movie. I'll understand if that didn't make any sense.



#169 - Oddworld: Abe's Exoddus (PS1)
Chosen by: Pitchfork

Pitchfork - The Oddworld Inhabitants team was very clear that Oddworld: Abe's Exoddus was NOT a sequel to Abe's Oddysee. This is basically a collection of DLC levels that happen to add up to a full-length game. Most of the additions are new spins on old stuff: Mudokens that behave differently depending on their emotional states, and Abe suddenly figuring out how to control Paramites, Sligs, and Glukkens with his voodoo chants. It amounts to a romp on a different path through an old neighborhood, but Oddworld is still a bizarre and fun place to visit, even after the initial novelty has worn out. (And this trip is much more worth its time than the middling Munch's Oddysee on the Xbox).



#168 - Banjo Tooie (N64)
Chosen by: Voodoo Groove

Voodoo Groove - I didn't realize until I played it again recently, but dang, this game has such worse presentation than the first. In spite of that I still love this game, it's much larger and busier than Banjo Kazooie without quite getting into Donkey Kong 64 territory. It's a solid platformer with some neat locales, and the in-game secrets help cement its own identity.



#167 - Wild Arms 2 (PS1)
Chosen by: No

No - At the time, I was really searching for the first Wild Arms, but I had settled for this one. I enjoyed its rather dark storytelling at the time, plus I felt its gameplay was fairly solid compared to other games out there. The battles were interesting as well considering you had to preserve your healing items since there wasn't a market place that really sold healing items until late in the game!



#166 - Command & Conquer (PS1/SAT/N64)
Chosen by: Carmichael Micaalus

Carmichael Micaalus - Probably one of the first Real Time Strategy games I played seriously, aside from maybe Warcraft 2 (which I didn't own before getting this, so yeah). While it was fun, I had a tendency to get distracted building up bases than sending out troops, which typically led to problems. I do recall abusing things like strings of lightning towers leading to the enemies in later stages...



#165 - Virtua Cop (SAT)
Chosen by: AdmiralMaxtreme

AdmiralMaxtreme - This was a very successful port of a very successful arcade game, and while it was a little on the short side, there was a lot of replay value in trying to shoot all of the bad guys right in the hand like the game wants you to.



#164 - Night Warriors: Darkstalkers' Revenge (SAT)
Chosen by: Pixel_Crusher

Pixel_Crusher - I don't like traditional fighting games because... I suck at them. Darkstalkers, however, is perhaps the only one I genuinely like because I don't suck at it, be it against the computer or other players. Plus, its horror movie character roster always seemed much more appealing than whatever else Capcom threw at me with their Street Fighter games. A shame that we only got the sequel on the PlayStation, as that console, unlike the Saturn, just doesn't do the proper justice to 2D fighting games.



#163 - Umihara Kawase Shun (PS1)
Chosen by: Zeloz

Zeloz - This game's a monolith in many ways. It is an insurmountable obstacle in my backlog that I will probably never beat. It's also inexplicably weird. Like, I really wouldn't know how to sell, or really just explain this game to friends. So you're a girl who has to get across platforms branded with the game's title for some reason, using some sort of elastic fishing line to attach to said platforms, while also avoiding ghastly, giant anthropomorphic fish and falling into a watery grave. Also, the swinging and stretching mechanics are absurdly deep, and the game requires an ungodly high skill level just to get through the main sequence of levels. There're also alternate level exits for the harder-than-hardcore, and at one point you do battle with a giant tadpole and its frog babies. Nothing is explained. The first few levels show you how to do basic things with your line, but stuff like scaling up walls and using momentum to swing out of holes needs to be learned by yourself. This game is just so... odd, and yet compelling.



#162 - Ace Combat 2 (PS1)
Chosen by: Vanor Orion

Vanor Orion - I can't remember much of the plot of this game save that I enjoyed playing it quite a bit especially the demo discs that you could get with certain magazines (remember those?), and finished it in the span of one concentrated evening during the time I rented it. Unlike the later games, it didn't have this different alternate world mirroring certain countries or events, nor did this game have any overly dramatic plot. It just felt like an easy and fun to play arcade shooter that just happened to strive for realism in every other department outside of making it a chore to play.



#161 - Batsugun (SAT)
Chosen by: Zeloz

Zeloz - I am not good shmups, and on any non-Touhou bullet hell game I'm absolute garbage (not that great at Touhou either). But Batsugun's different, somehow. It still takes me three credits just to get through Stage 3, but it's actually quite forgiving for a Toaplan game. A lot of it reminds me of V-V/Grind Stormer for the Genesis, but a little more polished and a little less harsh. You respawn right after death with most (though not all) off your power-ups, and the act of powering up doesn't take too much time at all. Much of the music's pretty good too, and there's quite a bit of intricate sprite work to be appreciated; you can see the little fishes and marine life swimming away as your ship blasts off from your aquatic base to begin Stage 1. It's a standout horizontal shmup for the system, even on a system filled with horizontal shmups.



#160 - Pilotwings 64 (N64)
Chosen by: Rhete

Rhete - The Nintendo 64 had an interesting launch. It only shipped with two games, this is the one you played between Mario 64 sessions, before going back to Mario 64. Time seems to have forgotten this game, but I remember liking it a lot more than the original, and being pretty amazed at the size of the America map.



#159 - Intelligent Qube (PS1)
Chosen by: Zeloz

Zeloz - I'd call the game deceptively difficult, but its harsh and stoic presentation actually really complements its demanding difficulty. Just hearing what I can only assume is God himself, ordering you to repeat a set if you screw up, all while the cubes that make up your workable space slowly collapse from under you, thundering as they fall off the main stage. Alternatively, when you complete a set competently, a chorus of angels (assumedly) sings while God-figure proclaims "Perfect!" in booming tones, slapping another saving row of cubes and expanding your work space slightly. It's a crazy, dark, nightmarish puzzler with a whole lot of atmosphere, and it scared the piss out of me when I was a wee kid.



#158 - Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo (PS1/SAT)
Chosen by: AdmiralMaxtreme

AdmiralMaxtreme - This is an interesting and fun puzzle game built around a ridiculous visual gimmick: Characters from Street Fighter and Darkstalkers beating each other up in a fighting game interpretation of what's happening in the falling-block puzzle. What a fucking weird game. In a good way.



#157 - Bakuretsu Muteki Bangai-O (N64)
Chosen by: Zeloz

Zeloz - It's hard to describe most any Treasure game without terms like "outrageous" and "crazy," and given that one of your means of offense is a missile array that somehow gets more dense the more bullets depending on your proximity to enemy bullets, it can be safely said that the game pushes the N64's sprite limits to outrageously crazy levels. The game itself is actually pretty easy to play without knowing jack about the Japanese language, and its charm as an affectionate parody of super robot and tokusatsu shows is palpable enough even through a language barrier. It may not be the deepest or most mechanically refined game Treasure put out this generation, but it's one of the easiest to just jump into and have a blast with.



#156 - Pokemon Stadium 2 (N64)
Chosen by: Voodoo Groove

Voodoo Groove - Better minigames overall than the original, to the point where I play this with my friends more than Mario Party. That might just be to preserve friendships, but hell! I just love those generation II pokemon. Bonus points for adding quiz mode, which for me has turned into a perpetual trigger finger lightning round.










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