Nintendo has been receiving a lot of hate universally recently. As a team we decided to share our most loved moments from Nintendo. For most of the team, we felt like most of our gaming journeys started with a Nintendo game. Some of these games are so ingrained into the gaming community that it would be hard to find someone who has never heard of them. Do you know the titles in this list? I would be genuinely amazed if you didn’t know all of them; so without any more delay, let’s get started.
Donkey Kong Country 2 – Most of my childhood gaming memories come from the original Donkey Kong Country trilogy on the Super Nintendo. In particular, Donkey Kong Country 2 stands out as the best entry into the series for me. It had the perfect balance of level design and enemy types and provided hours upon hours of gaming for my family. I still don’t feel like the newer DKC games have captured this type of timeless charm.
Super Smash Bros – I never owned a Nintendo Console when I was younger. I had to go to friend’s houses just to play some of the most iconic Nintendo games. We always found ourselves with too many people to play the standard games, so we decided to host our very own Super Smash Bros. tournament. We played the standard rules of winner plays on and that was it, we were hooked! I use to rush home from school throwing my bag across the room and then run to my friend’s house before anyone else, just to call dibs on first go. The chaotic nature of the game had all of us in stitches as you would try your hardest to get back onto the platform to fight some more. I loved playing Samus because she had guns and she wore armour and that was really cool. This game soon became a favourite of mine throughout my life. I still remember getting chucked off the edge by Kirby relentlessly and laughing every time. I can’t wait for Nintendo to bring this back for the Wii U.
Mario Kart – My most favoured Nintendo game would have to be Mario Kart. Overall the lounge room quality fun this game brings can’t be matched. Maybe except for Super Smash Bro’s in a room of people, (that actually know how to play of course) but Mario Kart is easier to pick up. Anyone can press accelerate and shoot a few red shells to have a decent shot at taking a few wins out. I remember spending countless hours on lunch breaks at work (we had a Wii for that purpose) challenging co-workers for free lunches and such if you so happen to win. Game play is solid and feels somewhat balanced, giving players at the back of the pack more over-powered items and people sitting in 1st place green shell after green shell. I played this game the most on N64 and Gamecube and have extremely fond memories of coming home from school to relax and peg friends in the back with shells. Also, it was a great all-star game that had many of Nintendo’s characters in a single lobby which brought a lot of undeniable fun. If you’ve ever had the chance to play this game it would be hard to deny the re-playability and fun times you’ve had on this one.
Pokemon Silver – So, I really wanted to choose Soul Calibur II for my favourite Nintendo game of all time, but after serious persuasion to do otherwise by the boss, who told me that I should choose a Nintendo DEVELOPED game, and not just a game featured in a Nintendo console. I argued that for me, Soul Calibur II felt like a Nintendo Exclusive that belonged only on the Gamecube, but that didn’t count. So Instead, I’m going with another game that meant a lot to me: Pokemon Silver.
Pokemon Silver was a first time for me on two fronts. First, it was my first ever Pokemon game, and secondly, it was the first time I played a handheld game, after a friend game me his own Neon Green Gameboy Colour, saying that he didn’t care if I had it, after I had found it on a spare toy basket he had in his room. Many good times were had, and that’s where I discovered I was a bird keeper trainer, my favourite Pokemon being Pigeot.
Metroid Prime – Metroid Prime really felt like a unique kind of experience despite looking like a familiar one. I remember the days when it was touted as a Halo killer by most of the gaming press, but once I played it I realised it was an entirely different experience. It’s a first person game, yes, but its larger emphasis on exploration, atmospheric immersion over the traditional focus on combat successfully brought the Metroid formula into the third dimension. Other games of this ilk have struggled in recent times to transition to 3D (including Castlevania and even Donkey Kong) but Metroid Prime got it right on the first try. A stellar moody soundtrack, a vast variety of unique locales and the right balance of player assistance and tense isolation make Metroid Prime one of my favourite Nintendo games of all time.
Super Mario Bros 3 (SNES version) – Possibly the first game I ever owned on the first console I ever had, SMB3 is not only a wonderfully nostalgic experience for me, but it’s the best Mario I’ve ever played that hasn’t ever been topped. The legacy of the game is such that the Leaf item is iconic to the franchise now. The graphics are wonderfully bright and memorable on the SNES version, as is the GBA remake. Yes, the 2D Mario was perfected and topped here, and no subsequent game I’ve played has ever matched the feeling I had with this game.
Super Mario Bros 2 – This is some people’s most hated Mario game in the series but for me it represents something so unique from Nintendo that they have really not been able to replicate it since. The artwork is beautiful and the character/level design feels like it was plucked from the mind of a hallucinogenic hobbit. It was challenging and gave you a chance to play not only as Mario or Luigi but Toad and Peach, which was later replicated in SM3DW.
Super Mario Galaxy 2 – If you asked me what my favourite Nintendo game was a month ago, you would have gotten a completely different answer. Right now, my favourite Nintendo game is Super Mario Galaxy 2. Yes, the game is beautiful, filled with creativity, tight controls and has a lot of content to go through. I experienced all this when the game was released in 2010. The reason why I have such a new found respect, and love for SMG2 is not even an intended result of the games production. It’s speed running. I can’t explain why a simple change in play style, changed this game so much for me in a timely manner. The way I’ll explain it is like this. It’s a paradigm shift. I’m used to taking games as they are, and playing them the way they want me to. Speed running is a totally different beast. I am by no means competent, not yet, but I’m still learning the routes, tricks and other intricacies of SMG2. The prospect of learning so much about a game I thought was so straight forward, excites me like nothing else. That’s why, right now I’ll happily call SMG2 my favourite Nintendo game.
Pokemon Yellow – First off I’m a huge Pokemon fan, when I was younger, and even now I’m playing the games whenever I get a chance to. Yellow for me was like being in the T.V. show at the time. I could travel around with Pikachu right behind me and play out all my battles like Ash would. It’s been my most played Pokemon game to date.
Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time – Memories and feelings that come to me just mentioning the title is unbelievable. Throughout my years, there has been one game that I have returned to over and over without hesitation or reluctance and this is it. From the initial boot up, the foreign, wonderful world created had me and my brother in a headlock that hasn’t let go. It is my fondest game not only from Nintendo but from all time. The highs and lows of the adventure, the overwhelming challenges that halted our progress, I recall getting stuck in “Lord Jabu-Jabu’s Belly” for weeks, perhaps a month; but the sheer feeling of success and accomplishment in completing not only that difficult chapter but the entire game for me and my brother is something I have yet to experience in the same way. This reason is one of the many reasons that this game means so much to me, and is my favourite game of all time.
So there you have it! What is your favourite Nintendo game of all time?