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MUST play games


Shadi Smith
ZD Champion
May 4, 2012
Trump's America
We all have various games that we enjoy and would gladly recommend to people, but what are some games you feel every video game player NEEDS to play?
Your reasons can range from it revolutionizing the industry to it just being a damn fine game.


Sep 19, 2011
V2 White Male
I wouldn't recommend games that changed the industry on that pure basis as some haven't really aged well but I guess it depends on my audience and their interests, they may want to see the history of each revolutionary process.

I would perhaps recommend the best games of each generation in order.

Spyro the dragon - I think the entire series is a feat for the playstation one. I believe it's aged pretty well too, tight controls, and fantastic colourful environments which still hold up due to their texture simplicity. Plenty of various levels many with unique designs. Overall a solid 3D platformer.

I'll list more when I'm older.


ZD Legend
Nov 29, 2011
Wow loaded thread.

Super Mario bros 1,2,3 World
Super Mario 64
Sonic 1,2,3 & Knuckles
Legend of Zelda
A Link to the Past
Ocarina of Time
Goldeneye (N64)
Tomb Raider
Final Fantasy 7
Starwing/Starfox 64
Mortal Kombat
Fire Emblem
Smash Bros
Resident Evil
Silent Hill 2&3

Damn fine
The Wind Waker
Majora's Mask
Twilight Princess
Mario Sunshine
Mario Galaxy 1&2
Bayonetta 1&2
Devil May Cry 1&3
Shadow of the Colossus
Tales of Xillia
Final Fantasy 8,9&X
Smash Bros Brawl
Luigi's Mansion 1&2


default setting: sarcastic prick
Dec 17, 2012
As Dan astutely points out, games that were revolutionary may not have aged very well. It's like telling a farmer that he HAS to use a John Deer steel plough from the 1880s because it TOTALLY changed how we grow corn.

I look at a lot of the games that shaped and defined my tastes and sensibilities as a gamer and it's pretty easy to find games that took the formula as inspiration and eventually did it better. If you're interested in the history of vidya, a lot of these so-called "MUST PLAY" games serve as excellent museum pieces. In the end, it's silly to hold up games from ten, twenty, and thirty years ago as definitive experiences. Outside of very rare exceptions, whatever those games do, they have been outdone at some point.

Ultimately, whatever list you concoct to answer this question speaks more to you as a gamer than any sort of objective analysis.

So, with that in mind, here are the list of games that irrevocably influenced my own experience (and the approximate year I encountered them). As it is impossible to recreate the context under which these games were experienced, I don't expect anyone to agree (hell, some of these I wouldn't even recommend, e.g. ultima III). In fact, I fully expect a lot of laughter due to the extraordinary oldness of most of the list.

Early Years
Asteroids (1985)
Pac Man (1985)
Super Mario Bros. (1987)
Metroid (1988)
RBI Baseball (1998)
Mega Man II (1988)
Bubble Bobble (1988)
Bionic Commando (1988)
Castlevania (1988)
Tetris (1989)
TMNT Arcade (1989)
Ultima III: Exodus (1990)
SimCity (1990)
Duck Tales (1990)
Double Dragon II (1990)

Curmudgeon's Golden Age of Gaming™™™™™
Chuck Yeager's Air Combat (1991)
Final Fantasy IV (1991)
Tecmo Superbowl (1991)
ActRaiser (1991)
Legend of the Mystical Ninja (1992)
A Link to the Past (1992)
Prince of Persia (1992)
Ultima Underworld: The Stygian Abyss (1992)
Dune II: The Building of a Dynasty (1992)
Wolfenstein 3D (1992)
Street Fighter II (1992)
Soul Blazer (1992)
Syndicate (1993)
King Arthur's World (1993)
Secret of Mana (1993)
Zombies Ate My Neighbors (1993)
Day of the Tentacle (1993)
SimCity 2000 (1993)
Mega Man X (1994)
TIE Fighter (1994)
EarthBound (1995)
MechWarrior 2 (1995)
Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness (1995)
Chrono Trigger (1995)
Kirby SuperStar (1996)
M.A.X. (1996)
Symphony of the Night (1997)
Multiplayer BattleTech (1998)

Slowing Down
MechCommander (1998)
Dark Age of Camelot (2002)
Hearts of Iron (2002)
Mass Effect (2007)
Mario Galaxy (2007)
Castle Crashers (2008)
Borderlands 2 (2012)
Hotline Miami (2012)
Bravely Default (2014)

A Link In Time

Break the Ice!
ZD Legend
I'll go with Donkey Kong, Super Mario Bros., Super Mario 64, and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. They're arguably the most influential games of all time.

By modern expectations, I think Super Mario Galaxy 1 and 2 and GTA IV and V are the only game changers. They might not have revolutionized the industry, but they're the new standards by which games in their genre will be judged.


Jul 1, 2012
My list is composed of some biased, but mainly it's games that I think are musts even if they're not necessarily my favourite games.

Super Mario Bros. 3
Grand Theft Auto 3
Shadow of the Colossus
Call of Duty 4
Fallout 3
Super Mario Galaxy
Uncharted 2
Heavy Rain
Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time
Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3
The Sims
Spyro Trilogy
Super Mario Galaxy
Fifa 10
Resident Evil 4
Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess
Pokemon Sapphire/Ruby


~ ZD's Pug Dealer ~
ZD Champion
Jul 6, 2011
We all have various games that we enjoy and would gladly recommend to people, but what are some games you feel every video game player NEEDS to play?
Your reasons can range from it revolutionizing the industry to it just being a damn fine game.
These are all damn fine games which everyone should play. In no particular order of preference.

Witcher 3
Halo 1,2,3,4
Fallout 3
Soul Calibur 2,5
Mass effect Trilogy
Red Steel 2
Asuras Wrath
Assassins Creed Black Flag
The Last Story
Deus Ex Human Revolution
Metal Gear Rising Revengeance
Dark Souls
Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare
007 Nightfire
Super Smash Bros Brawl
Super Mario Galaxy
Saints row 3
Dead Rising
Dante's inferno
Silent hill 2
Destroy all humans


The Good Samaritan
Mar 20, 2012
Canberra, Australia
The Last of Us
The Last Story
Ocarina of Time
Majora's Mask
Assassin's Creed (I've only played a few, and none of them we're really anything I'd recommend per say, however I think the series should be a given a chance)
Super Mario Galaxy
Spectrobes Origins
Life is Strange (It forces you to stop and think about the choices you make. You have the ability to go back and change your answer, which makes it even more stressful)
Okami/Okamiden (who doesn't like these games?!?)
Super Smash Bros. Melee
Animal Crossing Wild World and New Leaf
Sonic Adventure 2 Battle
Pokemon D/P/P, Colosseum, and Gale of Darkness
Kirby 64: Crystal Shards
Super Mario Sunshine

Luke's Wife

peaked in 2015
Aug 15, 2011
the abyss
I don't know if I'd call it revolutionary, but if you're into FPS and really, really great storylines, you have to play the Bioshock series & The Last of Us. Both fantastic games (in Bioshock's case, a fantastic series). These two and the Borderlands series are my top three FPS, although I'll admit I haven't really played that many. I'm not sure how revolutionary they were per say because I rarely follow gaming communities but I just recommend all three because they're damn fine games.

if it wasn't obvious bioshock infinite is one of my most favorite games
Dec 16, 2014
Milwaukee WI
half centaur
MAG (PS3, and you cannot play it anymore since the servers are down. a shame)
Warhawk (PS3, servers may be down too)
Doom (psx is my favorite version)
Starctaft 1+2
Diablo 1-3
Resident Evil 1-6
Fallout 3
Twisted Metal 2
Boshido Blade
Duke Nukem
Leisure Suit Larry 7
FF7 Crisis Core
Metal Gear Solid 1-3
God of War 1-3
A link to the Past and Links Awakening
Tekken 3+
Gran Turismo (any)
Uncharted 2
Tomb Raider
Motorstorm RC
Mario (NES)
Area 51 (arcade)
San Francisco Rush (arcade)
Simpsons (arcade)
Donkey Kong (arcade)


Jun 22, 2011
Super Mario World - my pick as best Mario game and one of the best platform games
Donkey Kong County 2: Diddy's Kong Quest - my pick as the best Donkey Kong game and single greatest platform game
Ocarina of Time - my pick as the best Zelda game
Goldeneye - one of the greatest shooting games
Banjo Kazooie - my pick as the best 3d platform game
Castlevania: Symphony of the Night or Super Metroid - whether you prefer horror or sci-fi these are often seen as the best of their respective series
any of the last 3 Elder Scrolls games - teaches gamer that open worlds and choice is a great way to make a game
Tetris - ultra-addicting puzzle game


The lazy Chaos Bringer
Mar 24, 2015
Oh all the possible lists to make. There are fantastic games that should be played and horriable gaes you need to play to understand the pain fully. I'll fpcus on the key games for fun and not pain. I decided to pick the three generes i play the most and three games i feel need to be played or tried.

2D platformers.
Super mario World.
Awell controlled 2d platformer that gives a great amount of variation and is very fair on level design and difficulty. If you die you will feel like it is your fault. The victories also feel good.

Mega Man 2, 3 and 5.
These are my favorite games out of the original Mega man series. If you like jumping, shooting, difficult and precise platforming. These games are for you. Having some fun levels, bosses and a great amount of difficulty you should have fun conquering these games.

Pretty much any Kirby game.
While your basic platformer. It provides a ton of fun. Gives you so much variety on how you go through levels. It has fun secrets to find. You can just enjoy yourself while going on a 2D killing spree. Warning kirby games are known for cheap enemy placement at times. Darn brunto burts coming out of nowhere!!

3D platformers
Super Mario 64.
A fantastic collectathon. A bit aged but it is still fun to see where it started. It still did somethings right compared to the newer games. Giving multiple open world areas where you could go after a decent amount of stars without having to select it as a mission most of the time.

The Spyro series on Ps1. All three have very good traits. The first game allowing you to go to a place and collect everything right off the bat. Hilarious lines and just great controls. While 2 made you back track a bit it gave you new abillities and more characters to watch in cutscenes. Getting more unique and fun dialogue along the story.Three added more characters to play as so that is nice.

Conker's Bad fur day.
If you like dirty humor and some dark themes. This is for you. This games is one you need to experience with its foulness but hilarity.

Final fantasy 6,7,8,9 and 10
These are some of my favorite tittles in the series. Between the stories, the unique way to get abilities and fun scenes you can watch. These are the ones I recommend.

Super Mario RPG.
This is a fantastic RPG. It may not be the hardest or most indepth. It basically a begginer's RPG but it still provides plenty of fun. With the ingame platforming, action commands and fantastic dialogue and story. This game brings a lot of color to the World of Mario.

Rogue Galaxy.
A level 5 game. It has great story, character development, dialogue and interesting gameplay. It starts of hard and then when you get more abilities gets easier to handle. Though certain parts are still hard. Some dungeons are a bit to long but at least the save points count as teleports. Also a robot named steve.


Jun 11, 2015
For those giving reasons for why they have selected certain games, thank you.

However, I'll try and pick one and explain throughly-ish...

Since I think I haven't seen MARIO KART I'll go with this.

So for Mario Kart, it's just such a simple game. It's a game that ANYONE, I say ANYONE, can pick up a controller, play, and have a blast even if they loose every time. Especially Mario Kart 8, the level designs and graphics make it interesting and different for those who have never played a game or those who rarely do but to those who do everyday. Character selection is always different (in newer versions) by having the chance to select a kart and wheels and such. Though you get frustrated you have fun with it and make silly comments that everyone laughs about. It's a good feel game. The music in newer games always is solid making each level feel the way it should.

These are the reasons that you MUST PLAY MARIO KART.


Jul 1, 2011
Mario 64
Mario Sunshine
Mario Galaxy
Pokémon Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald
Crash Bandicoot
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
Mario Kart 8
Super Smash Bros Melee
Mega Man 2
Metal Gear Solid 3
Borderlands 2
Saints Row 3
Chrono Trigger
Final Fantasy VI

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