Top 5 Nintendo 64 games
What are the Top 5 Nintendo 64 games? Well, the Nintendo 64 was correctly released in 1996, forcing it to fight with both the Sony PlayStation and the Sega Saturn (though the Saturn was by far the limited success of the three). If you were born in or throughout the ’90s, it’s very possible you grew up with an N64, a PlayStation, or even both consoles.
Which is why, in an attempt to relive the glory days of gaming, I’m adding down my Top 5 Nintendo 64 Games, in a similar practice to my Top Five PS1 Games article. While the PlayStation will eternally be my baby, the Nintendo 64 did play a pretty enormous role in my upbringing. And so, without any further ado, I formally give you my Top 5 Nintendo 64 Games. Let’s fire up the old emulator, shall we?
GoldenEye 007 (1997)
Based on the 1995 James Bond movie GoldenEye, GoldenEye 007 is best remembered as the forefather of first-person shooters. Finished with a free-roaming solo campaign, as well as a multiplayer deathmatch style, GoldenEye had everything that current FPS’s simply don’t.
In the year 2000, GoldenEye developer Rare advanced on to create a spiritual successor for the game titled Perfect Dark. Needless to say, the alien shooter did not deceive, and now both GE and PD are recognized as classics.
The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask (2000)
“You’ve met with a terrible fate, haven’t you?”
So what if Ocarina of Time’s direct series was a little dark, what with that spooky moon face and all? So what if the game’s idea was focused predominantly on death and despair? One of the most fascinating things about the Zelda franchise is its capacity to take on an entirely new tone with each moving game, and Majora’s Mask took on a uniquely somber tone totally unlike any other Zelda game before it.
Still, for a Nintendo game, Majora’s Mask included some pretty dark stuff. From the gloomy townspeople of Termina (or, should I assume, Terminal?), to the extraordinary horse-napping of Epona, to the current theory that Link is actually dead throughout the whole of the game (which you can find on The Game Theorists’ YouTube channel), MM is a wonderland of hopelessness. Glancing back on it as an adult, it’s uncanny how very real — and how very astonishing — this game really was, right up to the final boss fight.
Super Mario 64 (1996)
Strangely enough, I never actually bought a copy of Super Mario 64, but I do recollect playing it for hours at my local mall. Needless to say, I knocked the living crap out of it. Twice.
What makes this one so very significant, though, isn’t so much its actual gameplay, nor the fact that it’s highly rated as one of the greatest Nintendo games of all-time. Rather, it would have to be the point that it was the first official 3D Mario game. The fat plumber had finally made his way into the 3D gaming world, and for kid me, that was absolutely okay in my book. Though it may not have been as valuable to me as, say, Crash Bandicoot, it was a fun game nonetheless. Of course, it did have a rather groovy soundtrack, and those were the days long before Mario games became hugely overrated. Pardon me if I’m just a tad bit biased.
Donkey Kong 64 (1999)
Having never been an immense fan of Donkey Kong till my more current years, there really isn’t much I can say about this title other than these three main points:
- It had anthropomorphic monkeys carrying clothes, which is rather freakin’ cool in its own right.
- There’s nothing quite like being serenaded by a nerdy guy with the “DK Rap” discovered at the beginning cutscene of the game.
- Like GoldenEye and Perfect Dark, Rare also produced DK 64, therefore it must be good.
There you go. I said it.
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (1998)
Bet you weren’t expecting this one, now, were you?
Okay, okay, so maybe it’s just a little bit exaggerated at this point. But sincerely, who can forget wildly cutting at Succos in Kakariko Village (only to have their friends come along and quickly decrease every single one of Link’s hard-earned souls)? Or the unfortunate death of the mustachioed Great Deku Tree? Whether you were busy creeping past the castle guards, or “playing tennis” with the sinister Ganondorf, every exclusive element, from the game’s original soundtrack to its graphics, to its gameplay were all so very unique. Nearly every gaming blog on the Internet lists OoT as the #1 game of its age, and this singular writer isn’t willing to reject the ideas of gamers everywhere concerning such a timeless, beloved title from Nintendo.
If you haven’t played Ocarina of Time at least once throughout your lifetime, it’s likely that you either A.) Had definitely no childhood whatsoever, or B.) Hate awesome things; because let me tell you, it was (totally) awesome. And, although it absolutely did have its fair share of glitches and bugs, I do have to say that The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time was, hands down, the most famous title the Nintendo 64 ever saw.
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