This weekend we take a look at some of the games that have aged beautifully. Whether that was because of their story or their graphics, the important thing is that they are still a joy to play.
July is my birthday month and faced with the reality of time passing by, I looked at some of the games that managed to age with grace. Much like my poison of choice, these games have stood the test of time and haven't turned into vinegar (or the game equivalent of bacteria turning the alcohol in wine into acetic acid).
Since we're not getting any younger, let's make a start. Again, this list, like all others, is not a definitive study on the issue, it is not complete and the titles are in no particular order.
Unreal Tournament (1999)
Developed by Epic Games, this arena first-person shooter was released to widespread critical acclaim. It was originally released for PC, followed by Mac and PlayStation 2 versions in 2000. It is still making waves to this day.
Just last year, its Facing Worlds map appeared on the top ten greatest FPS multiplayer levels of all time, and the game itself was listed at number 20 on Bit-Tech's list of "The 50 Best PC Games of All Time".
I only have one problem with this game and its successor from 2004. I totally forget to blink when I play.
Chrono Trigger (1995)
Chrono Trigger was developed by Square (known today as Square Enix) and originally released for SNES. The team that made Chrono Trigger was made up of Final Fantasy's creator Hironobu Sakaguchi, Dragon Quest creator Yuji Horii and the artist who worked on Dragon Quest and Dragon Ball, Akira Toriyama.
The game has found itself on many "greatest video games of all time" lists. The colour palette still holds up today, the controls are simple and Active Time Battle system is engaging enough without becoming tiresome. This is all a big plus, but the reason it held up all these years is without a doubt its timeless story (heehee).
Chrono Trigger has been ported over to PlayStation, Nintendo DS, and mobile with some small adjustments.
The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker (2002)
Originally released for GameCube. The underdog of the franchise that surpassed everyone's expectations and became the title that will probably outlive all others from the series, thanks in part to its cel shading graphics and the story that took a more nautical direction.
The game proved divisive among the fans of the series but managed to gain foothold over time. Wind Waker is also considered one of the best games ever made. I sense a pattern.
Ultimately, it was the hated cel shading that was the greatest contributor to the game's longevity. In 2013 the critically acclaimed HD version was released for Wii U.
This RTS by Blizzard proved to be a cultural phenomenon the moment it was released into the wild. It sold 1.5 million copies worldwide during its first year, and went on to sell over 9.5 million over the course of the next ten years.
StarCraft's popularity quickly grew in South Korea, and had a successful pro-gaming scene as a result. The game continued to be one of the world's most popular eSport titles for more than 15 years.
A real testament to the game's value is the fact the RTS genre hasn't evolved much since its release, and even StarCraft 2 only added few mechanical adjustments and significantly improved visuals. StarCraft is getting a remastered version this year, and the original is now completely free.
Originally designed and programmed by Russian game designer Alexey Pajitnov, Tetris is a game that has been around for decades now and it is not going anywhere any time soon. I mean, I played Tetris before I even knew what a video game is.
The game or one of its many versions is available on nearly every electronic gadget that has a screen. Honestly, soon our toasters will let us play while we wait for our breakfasts in the morning.