Theme Week: Top 10 Lists: Video Games

Welcome to my latest Theme Week:  Top 10 Lists.  As you can probably guess, each Theme Week post will consist of a Top 10 list, but the subject matter will vary widely from list to list.  I hope you enjoy reading the lists as much as I've enjoyed putting them together.

It's finally Friday so how about we end the work week with an easy, breezy Top 10 list?

Top 10 Video Games (that I still own)

I had to be fairly specific with my list because narrowing down the Top 10 video games that I've ever owned (or even worse, ever played) would be nearly impossible.  Frankly, the nostalgia factor alone would probably mean that half the list would be SNES games.  But no, I'm not considering those older systems which I no longer own.  In fact, this list is only made up of games from the Gamecube, Wii, WiiU, Switch, PS3, and PS4 all systems that I still own to this day (well, I sold my Gamecube technically but the Wii plays Gamecube games so it still counts).  I'm also not including any games on the SNES classic (which I also own) because again, SNES were my childhood and that's nearly impossible to beat.  Alright, with all the fine print out of the way, let's get to it!

#10:  LEGO City Undercover (WiiU)

This game was probably meant for kids but I have to admit that I loved it even as an adult (albeit a LEGO-collecting adult).  It's basically a LEGO version of Grand Theft Auto but instead of dark, mature subject matter it's full of goofy (and at times, honestly funny) subject matter.  The game is full of collectibles so there's always something more to go for or to try and find.  It's a true classic for the underrated Nintendo WiiU but for today's buyers I believe the game has been re-released on the Nintendo Switch.

#9:  Donkey Kong Country Returns (Wii)

My nostalgia for old SNES games is already showing up despite the fact that Donkey Kong Country Returns is, in fact, a new game (at the time).  That said, the game is really a bit of a love letter to the old SNES Donkey Kong games made by Rare Studios.  The game is equal bits beautiful and difficult with plenty of variation and clever ideas to keep you wanting to play one more level.

#8:  Paper Mario Color Spash (WiiU)

I love the Mario RPG games (beginning with Seven Stars on the SNES) so the Paper Mario series has long been a favorite.  Honestly, the Thousand Year Door game was better but I sold that one off awhile back so Color Splash is the one that makes my list (Thousand Year Door would have finished better than 8th overall if you were wondering).

#7:  Super Smash Bros. Melee (Gamecube)

This is one of the few remaining Gamecube games that I still own (I sold the rest with my system years ago).  For my money, Melee is still the best game in the entire Smash Bros. lineup though the Switch version (Ultimate) is a close second.  I'm nowhere near a competitive player at the game but I do think it can be fun to play with friends while you all sit around the couch.  Also, the Gamecube controllers were the perfect controllers for a game like this, end of debate.

#6:  Super Mario Odyssey (Switch)

For as long as I can remember, I've loved Mario games.  My first game that I remember playing was Mario Bros. on my uncle's original Nintendo System.  My first game that I received as a gift was Super Mario All-Stars and Super Mario World, both pack-in games with our Super Nintendo that my brother and I got for Christmas one year (and seriously, how about those two games as pack-in games - wow!).  Flash forward a few years later, the first game I bought with my own money?  Super Mario 64.  So yes, I love me some Mario.  Super Mario Odyssey is the latest in a long, long line of Mario adventures and it's definitely one of the best 3D Mario games in a long time, perhaps second to only Mario 64 if I'm being honest.  That said, the game didn't quite deliver enough truly "new" experiences for a long time gamer to creep up any higher in my list.  In fact...

#5:  Super Mario Galaxy 2 (Wii)

...Super Mario Galaxy 2 actually ends up one spot higher in the rankings despite perhaps being a slightly inferior game.  Why?  Super Mario Galaxy (and Galaxy 2) offered up a nice selection of new mechanics that messed with how levels could be completed. Galaxy was great but Galaxy 2 really upped the ante.  I also found Galaxy 2 great fun to play from start to finish (including all the secrets, collectibles, etc.).  Odyssey, on the other hand, suffers in its endgame because a lot of the secrets and collectibles are annoying time wasters and not much fun at all (jumping rope 100x for example). 

#4:  Assassin's Creed Origins (PS4)

My video game leanings definitely tend toward Nintendo but as you'll see, all of my top four games are actually on the Playstation.  Assassin's Creed is the game that I've most recently played, in fact, I just beat the main story line about two weeks ago.  I also own Assassin's Creed Odyssey (which is set in Greece) but I haven't yet played that game.  I wouldn't be surprised if Odyssey beats out Origins (based on reviews that I've read) but for now Origins gets the #4 spot in my rankings.  The game is a lot of fun, lots of stuff to do in it, and it's pretty to look at.  Also, playing in ancient Egypt is super fun so it has that going for it as well.

#3:  Skyrim (PS3 / PS4)

A game so good I've bought it twice, once for the PS3 where I've beat the main story and most of the main side quests and on the PS4 (where admittedly I haven't played it yet).  Skyrim is an older game now by video game standards but it's still the torch bearer as far as I'm concerned for open world games with a true narrative as well as ambiance and sense of place.  The only game that's come close for me is Assassin's Creed Origins in terms of making you feel like you are part of the world.

#2:  NCAA Football 12 (PS3)

Like most video gamers who like football games, the NCAA football games were definitely the best.  Playing games with all of the college atmosphere happening will always be fun and even though my game is woefully out of date (they don't make NCAA games anymore), I can't bear to sell it since I'll probably never get a new one. 

#1:  Uncharted 2 (PS3)

I've played through Uncharted 1, 2, and 3 (and I own 4 and played about half of it before giving up).  Of all the games, Uncharted 2 is the one that is truly special and memorable.  Uncharted 1 was groundbreaking in its own way but it was too rough around many of its edges.  Uncharted 3 went a little too crazy with set pieces and the story kind of bogged down.  It's Uncharted 2 that is the real gem and one of the most recent games to make me go "woah" multiple times while playing the game.  In fact, this game is so good that's almost as much fun to just watch as it is to play.  The only downside to it is that I don't think it's high on the replayability factor as many of the other games on my list, but given that I have so little time to devote to playing video games these days the fact that I can't replay something really doesn't both me anymore. 

And that's it, my Top 10 video games (that I still own)!  I have to admit that I was as surprised as anyone when I made my list that the best games were all dominated by Sony rather than Nintendo as I consider myself to be a Nintendo guy first and foremost.  I should also mention a couple of other games that I think are great but that I haven't played enough of to place them on the list (Zelda's Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Maker 2, both for Switch and MLB the Show and Red Dead Redemption 2 for the PS4). 

Now it's your turn.  What are your top video games?  What game(s) should I look into next?  As you can see, my tastes are kind of all over the place so I could be persuaded to try any number of games.


  1. My favorite games are pretty much all from the era that you mentioned as being during your upbringing, as a combination of cost and time prevented me from really get terribly far into the more advanced eras of consoles (I briefly had a Playstation and Dreamcast, then got a used XBox after its next generation was out).

    Super Mario Bros. 3 (NES), Sports Talk Baseball (Genesis), and A Link to the Past (SNES) are easily my three favorite games of all-time. I played all of the other NES/SNES Mario and Sonic games a ton, as well as the first two Donkey Kong Country games and plenty of sports titles. I still play a few of these games via an emulator, which is enjoyable.

  2. Don't play video games that often anymore, but I've always enjoyed the Tom Clancy games on the PS consoles. Titles like Rainbow Six, Ghost Recon, and Splinter Cell are scattered throughout my Playstation, PS2, PS3, and PS4 collection. One of my last Clancy purchases was The Division for the PS4. Loved it. I also like the Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption games for the PS3 and PS4 consoles.

  3. Nice list! I like a lot of what you picked here (other than Skyrim, not my style), and have gotten a lot of enjoyment out of the Lego series as a whole. Recently I've been a big fan of Detroit Become Human but I'm hoping to get a Switch when prices come down since there's so many great games.

  4. My favorite from the past year or so is Forza Horizon 4.

  5. I've been (re)playing lots of old NES and SNES games lately (via emulation).. Perhaps I'm stuck in the past, but pretty much all my favorites would be from those early consoles. Been playing some new stuff via Steam lately, though. If we still had a PS3, I'd be tempted to check out Uncharted 2, but ours broke a while back and we decided not to replace it. Speaking of that, I've got several PS3 games I don't need now and would be happy to trade them in exchange for baseball cards, so just drop me an email if you're interested in working something out. Haven't gotten around to trying to sell them yet.


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