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Just What ARE The Classics Anyhow

Discussion in 'Video Games' started by Infernostar, Apr 15, 2024.

  1. Infernostar

    Infernopaw
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    Everyone always talks about 'The Classics' of Games, usually referring to the OGs that are Genre Defining or Redefining. I say nuts to that, Classics is such a broad term that can apply to most anything, I wanna hear what others think are Classic titles that people should experience.

    Here's some examples I can think of from what I have played of games I consider Classics that everyone should at least Play.

    • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D (Honestly 3D is the superior version of OoT)
    • Metroid Prime (Any version is fantastic, but this also applies to the Trilogy compilation to get Echoes and Corruption)
    • Punch-Out!! (Wii, genuinely the simplest yet most effective upgrade of the classic game)
    • Sin & Punishment & Star Successor (The original JP Only N64 and Wii title are near perfect run and gun games. Brutally challenging yet fantastically creative, as expected of Treasure's work)
    • Radiant Silvergun and Ikaruga (2 icons of the 2d Shooter genre, also from Treasure. Exceptionally challenging but completely clean and clear cut with it and not cheap)
    • Mega Man X1 (The original of the X Series is still the best overall. Maybe include X4 for its sheer graphical quality but its story is more for laughing at)
    • Castlevania: Symphony of the Night & Rondo of Blood (A solid 2d platformer and one of the fathers of Metroidvanias, the pair is available as a collection together on PSN)
    • Super Monkey Ball 1 & 2 (Icons of the Gamecube imo, 2 excellent puzzle platformers that have captured the sheer arcade essence without being a coin devourer)
    • Earthbound & Mother 3 (Mother 1 notwithstanding the series is odd. Quirky, zany games that are clear inspirations for indie titles years after them but still solid in their own right)
    • Chrono Trigger (The father of New Game + and an excellent game that constantly withstands the test of time
    Just listing these 10 for now, by all means share what titles you think are something everyone should play as well, I wanna see what else is a necessity to play.
     
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  2. Captain Comet

    Captain Comet Fallen Star Baby

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    Oddly enough, I don't really have a whole lot of games I've played that I think fit into what I would consider a "classic" that everyone should play. Most of my stuff is either more niche and not hugely groudbreaking and inspiring, too modern, or obvious. But I'll try to make a list anyway.

    • Super Metroid - While not the first Metroid game, it was the first to perfect the Metroidvania style, and basically created the genre because of it. Symphony of the Night came out just a few months later, and both continue to influence and inspire countless other games to this day. Honestly I'm shocked you listed SotN and Prime but not this.
    • Metroid Prime - I just like Metroid okay. And Prime is a fantastic entry and one of a shockingly small group to adapt the Metroidvania style into 3D.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (3D) - I know it sounds like I'm just copying you right not but I promise this won't last. Ocarina of Time is the purest Zelda experience you could ask for. While it's not my personal favorite game in the series, it's still in my top 5 and is in my opinion the best entry point. It's iconic for a reason. You can play the original 64 version just fine, but the 3DS remake is definitely superior version and doesn't really change the base game too much. Just improved graphics and smoothing out some issues the og had from age.
    • Hollow Knight - Okay now we're getting weird. Hollow Knight is one of the best Metroidvanias ever conceived. A giant map that's fun to explore, a pretty art style, a good story and lore, fun combat, it just has everything a good Metroidvania needs done to perfection.
    • Undertale - Okay how much do I even need to talk about this? It's Undertale. It was everywhere when it came out and is still one of the most iconic and well-known indie games of all time. The way it subverts RPG tropes is magnificent, the story is honestly beautiful, etc etc.
    • Wii Sports - No seriously. No pack-in game will ever get to the level of Wii Sports. It sold the console and validated the controller so extremely well that Nintendo gave it two god damn sequels. And while Resort completely blows it out of the water, there's something about the simplicity of the original, paired with the fact that it was basically the Wii's entire identity for a while, that just makes it something everyone needs to experience at some point.
    • Fire Emblem Awakening - The game that not only saved the Fire Emblem series from cancellation, but skyrocketed it to one of Nintendo's biggest IPs. That's impressive. And while later games may have surpassed it in terms of story and gameplay, Awakening has a certain tone to it that nothing after it really replicates. It's dark, it's depressing at times, and it takes itself very seriously. It's one of the defining games on the 3DS, a system that already has an incredible library.
    • Minecraft - ...look just hear me out. Minecraft was an indie game where everything is made up of cubes, and it got some much traction that it completely dominated YouTube for a good while, got studio bought by freaking Microsoft, and eventually became the best selling game of all time. It's not for everyone, sure, but it's such a unique and interesting game that's been getting continuous support for over a decade and is still going strong.
    • Spider-Man (PS4) - This game is magnificent. Combat and traversal are so fun, the collectibles are great, and it has one of the best Spider-Man stories ever told. It's just a very solid time all around, and c'mon, it's Spider-Man. Everyone loves Spider-Man.
    • Final Fantasy XVI - I'm going to cheat a bit here and talk about game that's not even a year old nor has all its DLC released yet. Final Fantasy XVI is a masterpiece all across the board. The setting, the story, the combat, the visuals, the characters, the sidequests, everything is done to absolute perfection and collectively made for one of the best experiences I've ever had with a video game. The story may get a little messy at the end but it doesn't get anywhere near ruining anything. And even though I think it's too modern to be a "classic" (again, it's not even a year old yet), I'm confident in saying it will be remembered as one down the line.

    In short, I have only just started branching out from Nintendo. I also want to give a shout out to Halo, but I haven't actually played any of them yet so I couldn't really talk at length about it.
     
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  3. Wizard

    Wizard Do you feel it? The moon's power!

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    The interesting part of using a label such as "classics" is our ability to all draw our own conclusions. In my opinion, it's a conversation that should be more about including great games than excluding ones with issues. Here are some games I would deem as classics:

    -The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
    - This is an easy choice. Ocarina of Time deserves all the praise it gets, though 3D is the better version of the game.

    -Final Fantasy VII
    - I recently played this game for the first time, so it's fresh on my mind. This is such a complete and well-realized game with a transformative soundtrack leading the way.

    -Super Mario World
    - There are too many choices from the Mario series, but I have to pick World here. The secrets are what truly set apart this game from the pack. An experienced player can enter the game and choose how much they want to play because the secrets are so strong.

    -The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
    - Skyrim's sense of exploration and capacity for roleplaying are immense. Ultimately, the game's legacy as a canvas for modding may be one of its strongest points.

    -Castlevania: Symphony of the Night and Super Metroid
    - Inspiring a whole new genre is no easy feat, yet both of these games stand as pinnacles of the genre and inspirations to many game developers. These games only seem to get better the more they are played.

    - DOOM (1993)
    - It's hard to get more classic than this. This game inspired so many games and did wonders for the FPS genre. Not to mention its cultural impact in making people use any and every device to emulate it.

    - Dishonored
    - This may look like an outlier on my list to some of you, but Dishonored deserves to be named as one of the classics. Though a lot of the game's elements would be improved by other games, the original game is such a tight package with so much going for it. This game had better not be forgotten. It deserves to be mentioned among the greats.

    - Yakuza 0
    - Yakuza is a masterclass in controlling tone. Very few series are as capable as producing interesting side content as this series does, and 0 leads the way with its fantastic mini-games. 0 is the best of what this franchise is and is a definitive must-play for any gamer.

    - Elden Ring
    -There are a lot of FromSoftware games that could fit here, but Elden Ring deserves to be in the pantheon of classics, even only being a couple of years old. Elden Ring somehow lives up to its own massive scope and premise. Do yourself a favor and play Elden Ring.

    - Shovel Knight
    - When I think of indie games, I think of Shovel Knight. The way this game bridges the past of gaming with the present of gaming is remarkable. Shovel Knight gracefully walks the tightrope between including what makes retro games so great and cleaning up what makes retro games outdated. I can't think of any ways in which this game missed the mark.

    There are certainly more candidates than this, but these are the ones that came to mind today.
     
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  4. Infernostar

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    • Super Mario Odyssey (Quite possibly the most open ended and freeform 3D Platformer of all. Even if one prefers the somewhat more linear aspects of titles as Galaxy Odyssey is exceptional in how far it can be pushed off the main story)
    • Super Metroid (The darling of Speedrunners and still a great game in its own right. Prime is basically 3D Super with Super's excellent atmosphere, silent but effective gameplay tutorials and story, and myriad of options for sequence breaking)
    • NieR: Automata (Platinum's first title to truly explode, a wild game with multiple story routes, gameplay shakeups such as 2d and twinstick shooter, and a popular cast of characters all set in a gloomy yet still beautiful post apocalyptic world)
    • Metroid Fusion & Metroid Dread (In a tradeoff of flexible gameplay for atmosphere and tension, Fusion delivers a stressful, nightmare of a survival exploration game. Fusion's successor in Dread is no slouch either, managing to incorporate a mixture of Fusion's fear factor and Super's highly variable gameplay and even a handful of sequence breaking, all while avoiding the stress inducer's that are the E.M.M.I's)
    • Sonic Mania (The best 2d Sonic is the one given to the fans, go figure. Mania acknowledges series history with a slew of retro stages and turns them all on their head with new twists and gimmicks for their back halves, while showing truly glorious new stages whenever it seizes the opportunity, all with a healthy cast of characters to play that all feel distinct from one another)
    • Final Fantasy VI (Part 2 of the SNES's most iconic JRPGs, VI is still the most popular of Final Fantasy's pixelated outings. An absolutely wild story for its time which can still be gut renching to the player at times, a large cast of memorable characters, exceptionally open ended gameplay though it is admittedly a bit on the easy side as a result, and one of the most iconic villains in the franchise alongside Mr. One Wing himself.)
    • Shadow of the Colossus (Sometimes, you don't need a large cast to tell an engaging narrative. With enough spectacle and gloom to a desperate quest, a simple love story can turn into a tragedy)
    • The World Ends With You (The most out there, experimental yet creative DS title. A game about fashion granting you psychic powers, emotional turmoil, accepting others into your life, and a style that no other game carries, save for its own sequel.)
    • Street Fighter III: Third Strike (At first a lambastic, forgotten game that turned into the darling of 2d fighting games, especially amongst the competitive scene. Spritework that is still impressive, a cast of oddballs that have their own charm, and shockingly deep gameplay options keep the game popular to this day, given it recently got a slot on EVO Mainstage)
     
  5. Neb

    Neb Cosmog Enthusiast

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    I agree with the picks others have shared, but will go with some other ones from more niche genres.

    - The House in Fata Morgana: As far as visual novels go I think this one is already considered a cult classic. It's a story of multiple tragedies set in the same mansion over the course of hundreds of years with a few reoccurring characters. The plot twists were well built up and had massive payoff. If you like the Nier series' soundtrack you'll probably like Fata's too. Each song fits every scene well and sets a fitting atmosphere. Cicio is so simple, but it's in my top 10 favorite songs in any video game.

    - Xenoblade Chronices: Fun combat, super memorable soundtrack, charming voice acting, epic story, and a fun world to explore. It scares a lot of people off for its long cutscenes, but it's well worth playing.

    - Stardew Valley. It takes its inspiration and exceeds it. So many games released since try to copy it and none have fully captured its appeal. The game is almost ten years old and still gets tons of mods updated and added all the time. The characters are interesting, the gameplay is satisfying, there's tons of variety in activities you can do, and the music is pleasant. The fact it was originally made by one person shows what enough talent can do.

    - Outer Wilds: It's a narrative that can only be done in a video game and it nails it. The lore is deep, complex, and you really have to make an effort to explore and find it all. It feels like a real mystery that you solve as an investigator. Even great games likes Ace Attorney don't quite nail that feeling fully.
     
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