With news of the Nintendo Theme Park opening soon, we couldn’t help but feel a little bit nostalgic. If you were a kid from the 90’s, you probably still remember a couple of your favorite Nintendo games. Back then, everything was just so simple… except I guess for those few codes we had to memorize – up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, b, a, start (sound familiar?) and of course the occasional blow hoping our game would finally work!
So we decided to make a list, in no specific order of our top 10 most loved and miss games!
1. Super Mario
There were so many versions of this that we can’t come to a conclusion on which exactly we loved most! It was one of the simplest yet most fascinating games of our time. If you never played this, then you’re not from the 90’s. I can still remember our long slow days just playing this game over and over hoping to finish it in one go!
2. Donkey Kong
Well after you’ve grown a little bit (but not really) tired of playing Mario, Donkey Kong was like a slight upgrade. It was still very similar to the concept of Mario but with a few changes that’s enough to refresh the gamer in us. We especially enjoyed the partnership of Diddy and DK as they collect bananas, climb ropes and use barrels to dispose of their foes. Oh and of course, stages where you get to ride the mad rhino were twice as fun!
3. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Turtles in Time)
I may be a girl but Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was one of my favorite cartoons, and soon became my favorite computer game! Each turtle had his own unique attribute, but I especially enjoyed using Leonardo or Donatello! In the game, players could choose to play the normal mode, time trial or a two-player fight mode. I enjoyed defeating the foot soldiers and often looked forward to fighting the different bosses in each stage – Bebop, Rocksteady, Shredder, Baxter… ooooh!!! Nostalgia! It’s TMNT! C’mon, what’s there NOT to love and miss about it.
Bomberman was first released in the late 1980’s but grew more popular in the 1990’s. This game was NOT just for the kids! Though I personally enjoyed this game (all versions of it), my mom was the one who got addicted to it. She didn’t even understand how to use the gaming console but would insist we put on Bomberman for her! haha The idea was so simple, you put a bomb, hide and wait for it to explode. Though you could play it like a normal RPG game, it was best played with friends… especially if you had the multi-controller. The best way to defeat your enemy is using either a power-up or outsmarting them and cornering them with your bomb. The game got even more exciting (and also frustrating) when they decided to add kangaroos in Mega Bomberman! Boy did it get harder to defeat our friends.
Megaman was another very popular game in the 90’s, especially Megaman x3. One of our writers, Marck shares how he found this game very challenging as you needed to attack while jumping or scaling walls. However, it was also one of his favorite games as he enjoyed learning new tactics whenever he got new armaments. Finding new armor and weapon upgrades in every stage somehow gives us the feeling of accomplishment! Another fun yet challenging part of the game was facing the boss in each stage! You only had your buster gun and need develop a tactic in defeating him!
6. Harvest Moon
Ok, so for those who didn’t grow up in the 90’s, Harvest Moon was basically our version of Farmville. Similar to Farmville, Harvest Moon allows gamers build their own farm by raising cows, sheep and chicken and planting a variety of crops and trees. I guess what we miss about this game is just really the 2D farming adventures. Though Farmville may have replicated that idea, it just isn’t the same.
7. Mortal Kombat
Now who could forget the ever dark and gory Mortal Kombat? Growing up in a family of 4 boys, I had no choice but to get used to the bloody battles between them when they played this game. It was one of the most violent and bloody games of the 90s, but still very popular nonetheless. It was one of those games that required gamers to memorize codes to be able to really defeat their opponent. Inputting codes before the match begins could sometimes lead to a special stage such as the ‘dark match’ which literally has you fighting in the dark a few seconds before the lights go back on. Then again, inputting these codes at the end was your final move or FATALITY! “Finish him!” (That voice still haunts me!)
It wasn’t until recently that I learned the title of this game ‘coz growing up, I used to call this game Rambo! haha Forgive me, I was 10. I guess the best part of this game, and also the reason it gained so much popularity was its 2-player simultaneous play. Though it’s quite common nowadays to have more than 2 players, back then, Contra was one of the first few RPG games to have this setting. It was a really simple game with a lot of shooting. You basically need to shoot enemies with your rifle and destroy crates to find new weapons. The game also had multiple views – sometimes it moved sideways (which was common), and other times you had to shoot upward, and still other times (in an almost 3-D view), the players backs are turned and you run toward the background. Moreover, Contra was also the game that popularized the Konami code. It was the game that even the true gamers would say they love (even if they didn’t play it) because of the legacy it built.
9. NBA Jam
This came out sometime in the late 90’s, but we still had so much fun playing it. Though Pokemon Snap became popular on our n64 console, what was really trending then were the Pokemon games on our Gameboys! The game, besides the usual combat scenes allowed gamers to collect badges and trade Pokemon with their friends. It’s like we were actual Pokemon trainers!
These are just some of the many games popularized in the 90’s! These aren’t exactly Nintendo owned games, but instead games that we played on our Nintendo console.
What were your favorite games growing up? Do let us know… let’s reminisce together!