Peaches' Top 25 Games of All Time
by Peaches

25-21 | 20-16 | 15-11 | 10-6 | 5-1 |

#10 - Yoshi's Island

The most original collection of mechanics in any game that I can think of.

Your "health" is actually a timer that counts down after you've been hit, and damage is determined by how quickly you can "recover".

Your main weapon is eating your enemies, which provides fuel for your secondary weapon: ricocheting eggs.

There was also the element of surprise: you never knew when you had to turn into a submarine, or fight a boss from inside his stomach, or use oddly morphing blocks of goo to cross deadly spikes.

And as for the Mario legacy, it brought both Yoshi and Shyguys into starring roles. That's influence.

#9 - Xevious

One of the early 2-D Space Games, aka Shoot-em-ups, aka shumps. And what strikes me the most is how well this game turned out, based on limited resources.

The terrain you fly over looks like it was drawn in MS Paint, but without so many colors. Despite that, the graphics are spiffy. The dirt roads and fields bend at interesting angles, while the color grey is actually used to punctuate the plain blue water with a port. Usually, the background of a shump is laregly forgettable, but I find that there's some definite craft here.

What also sets this game apart is that you don't just shoot airbone enemies, you also drop bombs on the guys on the ground, some of whom even move or shoot at you. I don't know why, but that's just so satisfying. Taking out four of those guys with one bomb placed in just the right spot... ah, it's beautiful.

#8 - M.U.L.E.

This game is really hard to explain.

You see, there are these machines... that look like mules, incidentally... and you can use them to mine Smithore (a precoius mineral used to make more M.U.L.E.s), grow food, and make energy. But you also need to trade with your opponents. And prices go up and down. And if you can't make or buy enough food or energy, it hurts your production. And you can use your excess time for each turn to Hunt the Wumpus for extra cash. And you gotta maximize your time and production by buying the right plots of land. And there's disasters, and...

Well, it's basically an economic game set in space, best played with three really nerdy friends.

#7 - Kirby's Super Star

I have no idea why Kirby rocks. But this installment is what brought us not only tons moar enemies, which meant tons moar abilities, but you also got special moves, so you were no longer limited by "press B to attack".

It also added a co-op mode. Considering that every FPS these days has one of those, it's pretty forward-looking.

And of course, there's SIX games - or rather, storylines - in this, plus a few fun mini-games. For some reason, I just loved this - you can collect stupid trinkets, bring down an airship - FROM THE INSIDE -

Just... talk about your dumb fun. And it's original, too.

#6 - Cave Story

Here's a question for fans - is it the game mechanics, or the story that sells this?

Naturally, it's well-programmed and pretty (pixelated, but pretty). But what's the number one aspect of this game that makes it Cave Story?

Is it the gradual reveal of the storyline? The one that goes more in-depth as you progress, revealing even more with the "better" endings? The fully-developed, highly original characters that actually made me sad when they died?

Or is it the perfect combination of adventure game and 2-D platform shooter? Not only do you collect stuff for your quest, you also collect items that help you fight, some items just for fun, and a buttload of weapons, each one with its own edge. And the leveling up system - where you collect prezzies to make your tools bigger and badder?

Whatever - it's a hell of a game. Tough, too.

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