Did you grow up playing video games in the ‘90s? We’re fortunate with the graphical quality and availability of games nowadays, but sometimes people take what we have for granted. If you were playing video games back when things weren’t quite as advanced, then you’ll understand how far the industry has come. You’ll probably also have a sense of nostalgia for some of those ‘90s titles. Even now, they still rank right up there with the best of them.
Super Mario 64
In 1996, Nintendo brought out the latest iteration in their Super Mario franchise. Titled “Super Mario 64” (because it was designed for the Nintendo 64) it was a revolutionary game for the series. Why? It was the first to feature 3D graphics. The open world structure, camera movement, and 3D rendering weren’t common at the time of release, so Nintendo really went all out with this one. In the years since its release, it’s been credited as one of the most revolutionary video games ever made. No wonder the company borrowed its formula for their newest title, “Super Mario Odyssey.”
Sonic the Hedgehog
With Nintendo a dominant force in the video games industry going into the ‘90s, their competitors wanted to find a way to overtake them. That’s how Sega came up with “Sonic the Hedgehog.” Intended to be a rival to the Super Mario franchise, the series never really beat out its competition, but it was still incredibly successful. The first title released in 1991 is still thought to be one of the best video games around. Designed as a platformer, “Sonic the Hedgehog,” utilizes speed and quick thinking over the precision of other games in the genre. Being able to zoom through the levels is incredibly fun and gives you a faster sense of progression through the game. Plus, it’s not something you find in other titles, especially ones from the ‘90s.
If you need proof that “Crash Bandicoot” was one of the best games of the ‘90s, just consider the fact that it was recently remade for new generation consoles. The hype around the game was so strong that developers couldn’t leave it alone. You don’t get as huge a variety of platformers these days, but few can ever really match up to Crash anyway. At the time, it had the best graphics around, which definitely helped it stand out from the crowd. What’s more, it also created one of the most iconic protagonists ever to grace a PlayStation console. If your franchise doesn’t produce a hero that people fall in love with, the games will never sell as well as they could.
Pokémon Red and Blue
If you’re not familiar with Pokémon, where have you been for the last 20 years? It’s one of the biggest franchises in the world, and it all started with Red and Blue. Two games that were essentially the same, but were both required to complete your Pokédex. Suffice to say, the formula for the game worked, which is why every new generation of games has stuck close to the original structure. What wasn’t there to love about it, though? It promoted multiplayer gameplay, and who didn’t love that when they were a kid? Trading things with your friends was all the rage. What’s more, the collectible feature was a huge draw for players back in the ‘90s and gave us all a reason to keep playing after the story was over. Pokémon has always been something of a craze, but is there a franchise more deserving of that success?
With every new year, the video game industry has gone from strength to strength. Competition between console and game developers is fiercer than ever, which means all of them are doing what they can to give audiences their best work yet. It’s never been a better time to be a gamer, although we were all ones before it was considered cool.