GameCola fans and writers describe their favorite (and sometimes least favorite) games of all time.
Travis Combs’ Top 10 Favorite Games
I recently stumbled onto your site on accident and must say, I’m very glad I did. The reviews are intelligent, the writing humorous, and overall quality is excellent. Suffice to say, the part I enjoy the most is the readers’ top ten lists. I’ve got so many games and so many systems that I’ve never even contemplated putting together a top ten. It just seemed inconceivable. So what did I do? I went back through all my favorites and though about which ones I played the most, which ones I had the most fun with, and which ones I would replay happily today. I spent a fucking WEEK driving my girlfriend insane (she got zero Animal Crossing time, that’s why). I played my Saturn, Turbo, SMS, Virtual Boy (yep, start the hilarity!), Dreamcast, Sega CD, and GameCube. And you know what? I had a lot of fun. Although as far as favorite systems go, the Saturn wins it by a mile. So without further ado:
10. Zillion II: Tri-Formation (SMS): What I remember most is your awesome 3-whelled cycle thingy that, once you got the proper icon, could transfer into a flying body suit that melded around you! It was a side-scroller where you had to memorize the patterns of the enemies or you were toast. What a sweet action game.
9. Military Madness (TG16): This was the first hex-type strategy game I played, and did it ever kick ass. A precursor to all things “Advance” (Advance Wars, FF Tactics Advance, etc.), to me this one was the granddaddy of them all. You were battling for control of the moon, and you had all the usual suspects for weapons: flying crafts, heavy and light tanks, stationary guns, and transports. It was just all so cool. The best thing was when I discovered a code to play against one-another. My friend and I (who also owned and loved his Turbo), when we weren’t answering jackass questions like, “Dude, why did you buy that thing? You should’ve got a Genesis! It has Altered Beast dude!”, played this game all night long. A classic.
8. Valora Valley Golf (SS): Probably not a lot of you have heard of this one. It’s golf, but different. For instance, you had a standard swing meter, but if you tapped it perfectly at the top, different colored sections would appear and your meter would slowly drop back down. If you tapped it again directly over one of these colored things, you could do a number of things. One would warp your ball directly to a random spot on the green. Besides that, the courses were unique. One was built like a wedding cake, where you would have to hit your ball up several “layers” to get to the green. Or just warp it from the tee. You’ve never heard swearing like when you watch your buddy — who’s a stroke down from you — hit that meter just right and warps his fucking ball. Probably logged more two-player time with this game while blind stinking drunk than any other, including sports games.
7. Lunar: Eternal Blue (SCD): Well, it’s Lunar. I loved it, and I still do. It’s a pretty standard RPG by today’s standards, but back then? Lunar was the shit. And it kicked Grandia’s overblown ass. This was Game Arts’ shining moment.
6. Beyond Good and Evil (GCN): Beautiful game. Spent a recent ice storm here in Portland land-locked and went through it in three days. Imaginative and artistic, I can’t wait to play through it again. I missed two animal snapshots somewhere.
5. Snatcher (SCD): It’s all about entering the code KONAMI into the computer and getting the unrated version. I was lucky enough to snag this one brand new when it first came out at EB. Didn’t know what I had until I got it home. I just re-played through this thing for probably the 10th time recently, and I still love it. Great story, great game.
4. Metroid Prime (GCN): Okay, I know about 90% of your readers are gonna come down hard on me for this one, but I’ve never liked the Metroid games. Didn’t like Metroid, Metroid II, Super Metroid, or Metroid Fusion. Don’t get all pissed, I just didn’t. Some people hate Final Fantasy, some hate Halo, I hated Metroid. Until Metroid Prime. This game consumed me like no other. From the awesome start up music to Samus removing her helmet, this game is pure joy.
3. Panzer Dragoon Saga (SS): I was lucky with my Saturn collection. I somehow managed to snag all the good ones before they became collector’s items (Burning Rangers, Power Slave, Radiant Silvergun, etc.). This is far and away one of the most bizarre and wonderful RPGs I have ever played. Sniff. I miss you, Team Andromeda. More than any ex-girlfriend I’ve ever had.
2. Shining the Holy Ark (SS): An RPG with a first-person perspective. Sure, the frame-rate blows and the graphics are dated by today’s standards. I don’t care. This game was and is my favorite RPG of all time. It just never gets old for me. I love the character design, the dungeons, the towns, collecting all of your little helper creatures (if you haven’t played the game, don’t ask) that you unleash in battle. If you’ve got a Saturn, get this game.
1. Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem (GCN): And to think I used to hate Nintendo back in the 80’s (I was a Sega lad). I love my ‘Cube, and Eternal Darkness is the reason why. In my opinion, Silicon Knights can do no wrong. A game four years in the making, and transitioning over two consoles, this is a masterpiece. Just when you get into the character you’re playing, BAM!, you’re pulled out of the main girl and put into a Roman soldier hundreds of years ago. And then a slave girl. Then a monk. It just does on and on. Perfect story, moody graphics, adult atmosphere. This game will forever be a classic.
Thanks for your time.