the best


“Su­per Mario 64 per­fectly de­liv­ered a new yet supremely bal­anced ex­pe­ri­ence. It is a rich, deep game that is filled with fun”

Toshi­hiro Nagoshi

Sega I’ve cho­sen Poké­mon, be­cause it is one the few glob­ally suc­cess­ful Ja­panese game fran­chises still hav­ing tremen­dous suc­cess to­day, af­ter over 20 years in busi­ness.

It’s widely ac­knowl­edged that Tetris was a key ti­tle in the Nin­tendo Game Boy be­com­ing a huge hit, but the Poké­mon games def­i­nitely con­trib­uted strongly to the hand­held’s longterm sales. Many games have taken in­spi­ra­tion from Poké­mon, fol­low­ing the flow of ‘col­lect­ing’ and ‘fight­ing’ el­e­ments, and al­though the fran­chise found suc­cess on con­sole, the re­cent world­wide suc­cess that was Poké­mon Go on smart­phone shows that Poké­mon’s spir­i­tual home is on hand­held de­vices. For me, Poké­mon is the pride of Ja­panese videogames, and is loved by men and women of all ages the world over.

Chef Fal­iszek

Valve Since Civ­i­liza­tion II was re­leased, I have had a Civ game in­stalled on ev­ery com­puter I have owned and have been play­ing a game of it al­most non-stop. One part of me won­ders why we, as an in­dus­try, even bother re­leas­ing any other games.

Ja­son Kings­ley


Civ­i­liza­tion is cer­tainly one of the very best se­ries ever to grace gam­ing, and Civ­i­liza­tion II is ar­guably its peak. There’s an in­grained sense of ex­plo­ration, progress and con­quest to Civ­i­liza­tion that I’ve al­ways found par­tic­u­larly com­pelling.

David Braben

Fron­tier De­vel­op­ments

So many great games come to mind: Su­per Mario 64,

Fallout 3, Obliv­ion, Skyrim, Zelda: Oca­rina Of Time and GTA: San An­dreas are all good can­di­dates for me. Each time I de­cide on one I am tempted to change my mind, as each is good for a dif­fer­ent rea­son. Is steak bet­ter than ice cream? Well, it de­pends on the con­text, and they’re dif­fi­cult to com­pare.

I think my choice for the best game, af­ter much thought, is Su­per Mario 64. Even though it wasn’t nec­es­sar­ily the first 3D plat­form game, it rev­o­lu­tionised the form and re-es­tab­lished an en­tire genre. It was jammed full of great ideas, had so many iconic el­e­ments – both new and reimag­ined from the ear­lier 2D games – fea­tured ex­cel­lent music I can still hum now, and had a well-bal­anced learn­ing curve. I re­mem­ber it be­came in­cred­i­bly dif­fi­cult for me as I hunted the last stars, but I still hunted them.

David Smith

Me­dia Molecule Su­per Mario 64 is the best game re­leased since Edge’s in­cep­tion. Not only was it ground­break­ing in terms of in­vent­ing nu­mer­ous game me­chan­ics and con­trol schemes that are now fun­da­men­tal to a slew of gen­res, but it re­mains the best ex­am­ple of a plat­form game. I shall as­sume that these words you are now read­ing live in a small sec­tion sur­rounded by sim­i­lar sec­tions that con­tain words to the same ef­fect. If not, please amend your copy of this fine pub­li­ca­tion with scis­sors. While count­less games have im­i­tated Mario

64, their im­prove­ments have been largely su­per­fi­cial and gen­er­ally to the detri­ment of the over­all ex­pe­ri­ence. When Mario 64 was made, they were in­vent­ing the rules as they went in an act of raw cre­ativ­ity. By com­par­i­son, so many sub­se­quent games ap­pear to be the work of metic­u­lous en­gi­neer­ing that some­how misses that in­fin­itely pre­cious cre­ative spark. Like a child imitating their favourite comic-book artist by painstak­ingly trac­ing a draw­ing of Su­per­man, the copy fails to cap­ture the vi­tal­ity of the orig­i­nal.

Dy­lan Cuth­bert


Su­per Mario 64 was the first game to move 3D gam­ing for­ward be­yond the space bat­tles, flight sim­u­la­tors and first­per­son shoot ’em ups that had dom­i­nated the scene for al­most two decades by that point. It proved that an in­tu­itive ‘Nin­tendo-like’ game re­ally could be made in 3D, with sharp con­trols and ad­dic­tive loops. Sud­denly you didn’t need to be a hard­core gamer to em­brace 3D. All the el­e­ments from the 2D Mario games were there in glo­ri­ous 3D, and they worked – and the fram­er­ate was con­sis­tent, which is some­thing else that you hadn’t been able to rely upon un­til that point. It marked a turn­ing point in gen­eral opin­ion, and 3D be­came the main genre for most games from that point on­wards, with 2D be­ing pushed aside for quite a while.

Neil Young

N3TWORK For my nom­i­na­tion I was look­ing for some­thing that per­fectly cap­tured the fact that our medium lives at the in­ter­sec­tion of art, de­sign and tech­nol­ogy. The game that is, in my opin­ion, at the pin­na­cle of that in­ter­sec­tion is Su­per Mario 64.

Su­per Mario 64 per­fectly de­liv­ered a new yet supremely bal­anced ex­pe­ri­ence at the launch of the Nin­tendo 64. It is a rich, deep game that is filled with fun, and so clearly lov­ingly crafted. Its bold, in­ven­tive use of 3D to ex­pand the player’s sense of place, puz­zle and world is a stun­ning ex­am­ple of how, in the right hands, tech­nol­ogy, art and de­sign can cre­ate amaz­ing ex­pe­ri­ences.

For its ex­quis­ite ana­logue con­trols, the re­strained and in­tel­li­gent use of cam­era, the bold use of 3D to ex­pand the sense of place and won­der, and for its over­all com­plete­ness as a bal­anced game, Su­per Mario 64 is in my opin­ion the best game since the in­cep­tion of Edge.

War­ren Spec­tor

OtherSide En­ter­tain­ment Ask­ing some­one to name the best videogame re­leased since 1993 is re­ally un­fair. First, there are a lot of ways to de­fine ‘best’. You can con­sider in­flu­ence, sales, re­view scores, sim­ply name your favourite – there are count­less ways to mea­sure ‘best-ness’. Sec­ond, there are so many great games to choose from. Think about

it – Doom, War­craft II, Di­ablo ( I and II), Half-Life, Knights Of The Old Repub­lic, World Of War­craft, Gui­tar Hero, Su­per Mario Galaxy, Rock Band, Heavy Rain, The

Walk­ing Dead, The Ico & Shadow Of The Col­los­sus Col­lec­tion (I had to work those two in and fig­ured why not to­gether?). Any one of those would be a great choice. But there’s one game that stands above them all – in­flu­en­tial, great sales, great re­views and, yes, one of my favourites. That game is Su­per Mario 64. It ush­ered in the age of 3D plat­form­ers and, rare for a first, it was nearly per­fect. Per­fectly bal­anced, a great cam­era that al­ways al­lowed you to see what you needed to see, just chal­leng­ing enough to hook newbs and ex­pe­ri­enced gamers, a com­pelling world seen for the first time from a new per­spec­tive, great make-yous­mile graph­ics, ter­rific an­i­ma­tion (full of per­son­al­ity)… Think how many games have fol­lowed in its foot­steps, rarely cap­tur­ing its magic or match­ing its qual­ity. Think how much time I spent play­ing it. Def­i­nitely the ‘best’ game of the past 23 years.

Keita Taka­hashi

Funom­ena I would say Tetris, but that was re­leased ear­lier than 1993, so I’ll say Parappa The Rap­per in­stead, but specif­i­cally the first level with Mas­ter Onion. I’m not fa­mil­iar with the genre, but Parappa is one of the pi­o­neers of music games that taught us it’s fun to push the but­tons. Af­ter the first level, I feel that the game me­chan­ics get messy, but that first level is su­per-great and in­tu­itive. It’s de­light­ful.

Hil­mar Veigar Pe­turs­son

CCP Games I choose Ultima On­line, as it came the clos­est to giv­ing me the myr­iad feel­ings that I felt back when play­ing my favourite MUD, Dis­c­world, which came out back in 1991. It was also a huge in­spi­ra­tion for EVE

On­line, which has pretty much been my life since.

David Bre­vik

Gray­beard Games The rev­o­lu­tion­ary fifth game in the Zelda se­ries and the first in 3D, Oca­rina Of Time is an in­cred­i­ble game from start to fin­ish. The world of Hyrule be­came a re­al­ity as you were im­mersed like never be­fore. The game me­chan­ics for deal­ing with 3D and com­bat were ground­break­ing. The story was the best in the se­ries and the clock­work puz­zles de­fine su­perb de­sign. The game con­tin­ues to be ported to new sys­tems and played, re­played and en­joyed by mil­lions. It’s as im­por­tant to­day as it was when re­leased in 1998. If there’s one game new de­sign­ers and game mak­ers should play and study, this is it. It’s the best.

Nick Bur­combe

Playrise Dig­i­tal

The Leg­end Of Zelda: Oca­rina Of Time is, in my view, the most com­plete game ever pro­duced. For me, there isn’t a sin­gle weak com­po­nent in it. They lit­er­ally got ev­ery­thing right. Com­pelling, fam­ily-friendly sto­ry­telling, bril­liant char­ac­ters, an epic open-world en­vi­ron­ment – and it even man­aged to pull off a gen­uine sense of peril as well as amuse­ment and hu­mour. It got the emo­tional con­tent right too.

Not only that, but it was ab­so­lutely in­ge­nious in so many of its game de­sign el­e­ments and game­play me­chan­ics. Plus, it had an un­for­get­table sound­track that even had you ‘play­ing’ a mag­i­cal oca­rina that could sum­mon a trusty steed, change day into night, tele­port around the world, bring in a storm, and even get milk from a cow – as­sum­ing you had some­thing to put it in! There are count­less amus­ing minigames and sid­e­quests, and the whole world cre­ated a feel­ing that it was a gen­uinely non-lin­ear ad­ven­ture.

Very few games have ever got ev­ery­thing so right while pro­vid­ing so much. It was, in my view, the per­fect game, and if you played it at the time, it’s one you can never for­get. A gen­uine sense of ad­ven­ture, won­der and pure magic.

Phil Har­ri­son

Al­loy Plat­form In­dus­tries It’s tough to de­fine ‘best’. If the task was to elect my cur­rent favourite game it would be Play­dead’s Inside, as it’s been in my head for weeks since I played it. For the game that’s brought most joy to my house, it would be Mario Kart 8, as my two sons love it. I’d also want to con­sider the GTA se­ries for push­ing the bound­aries in ev­ery re­spect, es­pe­cially San An­dreas and GTAV. But the game I am go­ing to choose be­cause I loved get­ting lost in its glo­ri­ous story and world is The Leg­end Of Zelda: Oca­rina Of Time.

Nin­tendo’s Zelda se­ries has al­ways been a favourite but the scale, de­tail and pure fun of the game stands the test of time, and I can’t wait to play it again with my kids as the nights draw in this win­ter. And I think that’s ul­ti­mately the high­est com­pli­ment you can pay a game – or a book, a movie or an al­bum, for that mat­ter – it’s an ex­pe­ri­ence you cher­ish so much that you want to hand it down to the next gen­er­a­tion to en­joy as well.

Valve writer and VR spe­cial­ist Chet Fal­iszek

Un­til Dark Souls came along, The Leg­end Of Zelda: Oca­rina Of Time con­sis­tently topped our best-game lists. It’s still looked to to­day by devs as a genre ex­em­plar

Al­loy Plat­form In­dus­tries founder Phil Har­ri­son

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