When was the last time you decided to lay down and ruminate about all the media content you’ve ever consumed? From how impactful the emotional material was to whether you can remember it in the first place and should’ve done something more productive, like… arguing in the comments section.
A recent (figurative) brush with death’s icy grasp forced me to reflect on this regarding the games I’ve played and enjoyed in my life. Have I done a good job as an obedient consumer? Did I make the right choices for the most part? Since it’s fun to type a few words about things you like that nobody else gives a damn about, I’ll let you judge that; these are a few of my favourite games in no specific order.
Super Mario World
It’s a proven fact that nobody can argue against this gem of a title – and there must be at least one Mario game on everyone’s favourites list because it’s probably written into law somewhere, or at least it should be.
Regardless, Super Mario World was my first 2D platformer (which does gives it a sentimental value to me) but I can guarantee it’ll be your favourite by the time you’re finished. The controls are the best in any Mario title, fine tuned to perfection which ensures that the simplest of jumps are a joy to accomplish. The theming remains memorable nearly 30 years later too; a dinosaur island made of sweets. Whilst other beloved Mario titles can also stake a worthy claim in these aspects, Super Mario World beats them in one other regard – unbelievably catchy music. Try and get it out of your head, I dare you.
Dark Souls: Remastered
The run-up to the end of a decade usually contains a rumination about the best (and worst) things from it. In this case, it’s highly probable that Dark Souls will take the award for either ‘most influential game’ or the trophy for ‘best game of the decade’.
Often used as a synonym for ‘hard’ by lazy idiots, Dark Souls is far more than just that. Yes it’ll kick your ass repeatedly, but you’ll waltz away from it with a keener taste for game design. Dark Souls is designed with a non-linear world and combat design that allows you to tackle it in any way your heart desires – if you’re good enough. Everyone remembers the many trials and setbacks (like that time you lost a billion souls) and of course, nobody can forget those impenetrable boss fights. Titanic and teeth-grindingly difficult, it’s a must play for anyone.
Fallout: New Vegas
There was a toss-up between New Vegas and The Witcher 3 as my favourite CRPG, but I just had to give it to Obsidian’s beloved cult favourite. Fallout: New Vegas is a classic, fully embracing the darkly humorous series lore along with well-written characters and an exuberant faction system that changes the story and ensures your choices really do matter. The world is fascinating to explore, the quests and stories are deeply resonating and it’s a joy to behold (with mods on PC).
It’s quite political too; from debating whether New Vegas should be under the control of a democratic civilised ruling government to ruthless barbarians, a capitalistic business tycoon and full independence. Challenge your linear political perspectives today and skip over the arguably overrated 3,4 and godforsaken 76.
By Bradley Newson