I’ve been gaming since I was about 7 or 8. The very first video game console I ever owned was the GameBoy Color, rocking Pokemon Silver 24/7. Pokemon Silver is was got me hooked to this phenomenal medium and is still one of my favourite games of all time. I also loved playing Spyro the Dragon on the original PlayStation, my first home console. However I didn’t start my current, habitual gaming hobby until I was about 15, and that’s when I got my PlayStation 3 as a Chirstmas present. And for a long while, I primarily played my PS3, I didn’t own an Xbox 360 at the time and I never did end up grabbing a Wii. And that leaves me with a confession: my very first Nintendo home console was the Wii U. People find that statement to be quite a shocker, especially because of how much I love video games. I never owned an NES, SNES, N64, GameCube, or a Wii; I guess you can say I jumped on the Nintendo bandwagon fairly late. In addition to my Wii U, I also have a 3DS which I do love and wish I had more time to play. So I thought I’d share my sad list of completed Nintendo titles with you all and express my interest on the other titles, whether they be recent or classic, I wish to experience, and hopefully you more experienced gamers can suggest some of your favourite Nintendo titles that I forgetfully omitted!
The very first Legend of Zelda game I played was Wind Waker, thanks to the HD remastered edition released on the Wii U. And this is another shocker to most people as Wind Waker was apparently quite the polarising entry back when it was originally released in 2002 on the GameCube. Its more cartoonish art design, however, aged extremely well, and if I hadn’t known any better, I would’ve thought that Wind Waker HD was a brand new entry in the Zelda series, just based on its looks alone. I immediately fell in love with its gratifying sense of exploration, as I sailed across the vast waters of the Great Sea. I even loved its simple, but enjoyable combat and the exquisite level design of the many dungeons. I loved Wind Waker so much that I went out and bought a copy of the next 3D Zelda, Twilight Princess, immediately after Wind Waker’s credits rolled; and even though I didn’t enjoy it nearly as much, I still thought it was an amazing game. Earlier this year I decided to play one of the more influential entries in the series, The Ocarina of Time. I wrote a little piece on my experience with Ocarina of Time a couple months ago and in it I said that it quickly became one of my favourite games of all time and is a golden standard for gaming. And it was just the perfect title for the 3DS, I was pretty much glued to that thing for a good month straight. So those are the only Zelda games I’ve ever completed, a little sad I know. I do own a copy of Skyward Sword, which I have yet to play due to my backlog of games and I do plan on eventually picking up Majora’s Mask on the 3DS. I’d love to revisit and play some of the traditional 2D classics, such as the original on the NES and A Link to the Past, before I go tackle the most recent 2D entry, A Link Between Worlds.
So as I previously mentioned, I grew up playing Spyro the Dragon and Crash Bandicoot on the original PlayStation, so since I didn’t own a Nintendo console as a kid, they were my Mario and Zelda. The first Mario game I ever completed was, don’t laugh, Super Mario Galaxy 2 on the Wii. I did play other Mario games such as Mario Sunshine, Paper Mario, and New Super Mario Bros Wii, but they were experienced at my friend’s house and in small doses. Super Mario Galaxy 2 was the first Mario title that I sat with and dedicated myself to, and in return, I was blown away. The level design, the art direction, the soundtrack, and goodness gracious, the platforming were all so impeccable. It really got me hooked to this legendary, iconic series and I was just itching for more. So I bought Super Mario 3D Land and World on the 3DS and Wii U respectively, and while both were fun (the latter more so than the former), they just couldn’t match the scope and perfection that was Mario Galaxy 2. In terms of Mario titles I wish to play, where do I begin? Let’s start with the original Super Mario Bros released back in 1985, undeniably the most important video game of all time. I feel sort of ashamed to have never fully played it and call myself an avid gamer, but hopefully redemption will arrive in due time. Same goes for Super Mario Bros 3 on the NES and Super Mario World 1 & 2 on the SNES. And it doesn’t hurt that I find the 16-bit era of gaming absolutely gorgeous. Now in the 3D landscape of the Mario series, I truly understand that I need to play Super Mario 64. Whenever I talk to my friends about how much I love Galaxy 2, their immediate response is: “play Mario 64 then come talk to me”. So I want to experience this open world title as it arguably pioneered the 3D platforming genre and gave light to the franchises that I adored growing up.
I absolutely love the Super Smash Bros series and have played every entry released on home consoles (sorry 3DS). It is a fantastic party game and some of the most chaotic local multiplayer fun you can have nowadays. That’s my primary reason for loving it, but I understand that I’m missing a big component on what makes Smash Bros such a popular and successful series. Smash Bros is an undeniable tribute to Nintendo’s legacy and seeing how far video game characters have come over the many years. It’s extremely heart-warming and nostalgic for those who grew up with these characters but unfortunately I didn’t; so that’s why I wasn’t phased by the surreal, unbelievable moment of Link and Mario dishing it out for the first time. But hopefully I can make up for lost time and experience these characters’ origins and understand their importance to Nintendo and gaming as a whole.
And it’s time for the sad to get sadder; I have never played any title in the Donkey Kong series, Star Fox series, Kirby series, Mother series, or the heavily acclaimed Metroid series. I’ve only played the newest additions to the Mario Kart and Mario Party series and have truly completed only one Pokemon game: Pokemon Silver. Luckily we live in a technological world where digital distribution is the standard and can be retrieved with just a simple click. Because of the beauty that is virtual console, I can experience most if not all of these legendary games. So that’s my primary reason for starting a Classic Corner feature, so I can express my thoughts on these classic titles and see if they live up to their universal acclaim. So what are some of your favourite Nintendo titles? Are there any that I forgot to mention and should check out? Please feel free to comment and/or leave some recommendations. Have a great weekend everyone!