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Games Entertainment

Ocarina of Time — Best Game Ever? 615

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is the best game yet made, according to a list compiled by readers and writers of the lauded British gaming magazine Edge. Their list of the hundred best games ever is top-heavy with Nintendo titles, a full five out of the top ten being released to a Nintendo platform. Obviously, this sort of thing can get contentious, and CNet's Crave blog spoke up quickly with a contrary opinion. "The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is truly a masterpiece that should be thought of as one of the greatest games ever created. But to call it the greatest game of all time is a serious misstatement. Unlike Super Mario Bros., Ocarina of Time was released in an era where video games were booming and sales were on the rise. Simply put, everyone was playing video games, and the game was the best of its time. But no other game in history--Ocarina of Time included--was able to save an entire industry from almost guaranteed destruction the way Super Mario Bros. did, and it is for this reason that we should all give ol' Mario and Luigi credit where it's due." Let's hear it, then. What game deserves to top a list of the 100 best games ever made?
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Ocarina of Time — Best Game Ever?

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:27PM (#19737339)
    Final Fantasy VII is the best game of all time :)
  • Psychonauts (Score:5, Insightful)

    by cyberon22 ( 456844 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:28PM (#19737349)
    Psychonauts got in at 99? I would have pushed it into the top ten, but it's good to see that the game hasn't been completely ignored. I wonder how many people have actually played it.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:31PM (#19737387)
    Final Fantasy XII at number 8 = critical failure. Seriously, has anyone that voted on this list not played any of the other ones that were far superior? A vote for XII is a vote against nature.
  • BGOAT (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Reason58 ( 775044 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:31PM (#19737389)
    You can't say something is the "best" without defining what you think those qualities are that make something best.

    Storyline? Gameplay? Graphics? Sounds? Replayability? Uniqueness?
  • Yes (Score:4, Insightful)

    by sycomonkey ( 666153 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:32PM (#19737399) Homepage
    The answer is yes. Ocarina of Time has every element that makes video gaming such a rewarding and engaging pasttime. It was revolutionary, and it is still fun to this day.
  • by Jazzer_Techie ( 800432 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:33PM (#19737411)
    There are a lot of sequels on the list, often coupled with the omission of the original(s). They omit both Doom and Half-Life, while charting Doom II at 78 and Half-Life 2 at 4. Honestly, that just doesn't make much sense.
  • by TerranFury ( 726743 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:35PM (#19737453)

    ...that the South Korean Air Force has an official Starcraft team.

    I'd say that getting your videogame elevated to the status of stadium-worthy spectator sport is a pretty huge achievement. Blizzard's Starcraft is surely up there.

    (This is complicated only by the fact that it has so many worthy competitors from the same era: Age of Empires is the first that comes to mind.)

  • by wizardforce ( 1005805 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:36PM (#19737467) Journal
    The sims series wins hands down as a series if you look at how many people play it. starcraft wins because you cant beat the sound of zerg being slaughtered in a poorly planned attack mario bros because of the fact that people still play it halo because of the fan following warcraft doesn't need an explanation spore is going to win if what they say about it is true
  • Re:Counter-Strike (Score:5, Insightful)

    by LandoCalrizzian ( 887264 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:37PM (#19737477)
    It still doesn't compare to the number of hours spent playing Super Mario Bros. Counterstrike can't even come close to the number of children(boys AND girls), teens(men AND women) and parents(men AND women) who were drawn to SMB like a moth to a flame. In 15 years, I doubt you'll find many people who keep a computer around just to play Counterstrike or it's sequels.

    Nintendo is arguably the only developer(hardware and software) to stay true to the original idea of Video Games as a source of fun instead of pimping it out to gain control of the home theater market. Sony is starting to lose it's way and Microsoft is Microsoft.

    I am not a nintendo fanboy but I do respect the Old School.
  • One of the best (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jerry Rivers ( 881171 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:38PM (#19737491)
    Deus Ex gets my vote.
  • NETHACK (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:42PM (#19737525)
    See subject. That's right.
  • Re:One of the best (Score:1, Insightful)

    by xXenXx ( 973576 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:46PM (#19737579)
    I agree.

    Ocarina of Time my ass.
  • Idiotic. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Intellectual Elitist ( 706889 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:50PM (#19737633)
    Most "Top Anything" lists are silly and miss a number of obvious choices, but this list is downright idiotic. I give them points for including games like Gitaroo-Man and Tempest 2000, but some of the omissions and especially the ordering they chose are just obscene.

    Virtua Tennis 3 better than Robotron? Nights Into Dreams better than Tomb Raider? Darwinia, Super Monkey Ball and R-Type Final making the list while classics like X-Com and Fallout are nowhere to be found? Don't even get me started on the timeframe and system bias evidenced here. What a joke...
  • by exp(pi*sqrt(163)) ( 613870 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @07:58PM (#19737731) Journal
    I don't know what is the best game. But there was another game for the same platform as Ocarina that was better - GoldenEye.
  • by G-funk ( 22712 ) <josh@gfunk007.com> on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @08:00PM (#19737759) Homepage Journal
    Coz doom 2 was better than doom, and ditto for hl2? The list isn't "revoltionary" or "groundbreaking" games, it's "best".
  • Re:BGOAT (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Plekto ( 1018050 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @08:01PM (#19737771)
    Wasteland was great, but the game that broke the RPG wide open was the Ultima series. Before that it was nethack-ish games that lacked a persistent environment, real character development, or a decent plot. Now, Ultima III was good, but the best of the series and the one that made everyone at the time(and I mean *everyone*) was IV. It essentially was Final Fantasy VII in scope and play. A decade earlier.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultima_IV [wikipedia.org]
    1985. Nothing for almost a decade surpassed it in quality and scale.

    *quote from that link*
    "In 1996 Computer Gaming World named Ultima IV as #2 on its Best Games of All Time list on the PC."

    It didn't even make the top ten - which is how you know this "list" is a joke. And Final Fantasy VII was what - way near the very bottom? The thing still commands $60 a copy on Ebay.
  • by Murrdox ( 601048 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @08:06PM (#19737831)
    This list is one of the worst "Top 100" I've ever seen.

    The flaws are many and frequent.

    How could you have a top 100 list of games that completely excludes ANY Bioware or Black Isle Studios games? On top of that, there's no homage to some clear classics and pioneers of gaming, such as Zork, or Hero Quest. Only a brief mention is made for Monkey Island.

    The fact that the vast majority of the games on the list were made after 2000 says a bit.
  • Re:Nethack (Score:2, Insightful)

    by dbitch ( 553938 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @08:11PM (#19737871)
    Amen! If you look at the breadth of play and the immersion and the replay value, Nethack has to rank up there in the list. I think Salon did a decent article on why Nethack has survived so long and has such a fanatical userbase; I chalk it up to the fact that I've had a version of Nethack installed since the first day I touched the game, so 15 years of basically constant Nethacking. I've played other games (Diablo, etc) but only Nethack can still make me forget to sleep. I always compare games like WoW and such to Nethack: sure, it's got fancy graphics and is immersive, but would I be able to play this game for 15 years and not get bored? The answer so far is no.
  • Solitaire! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Wordsmith ( 183749 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @08:21PM (#19737965) Homepage
    Um, dude. Solitaire. Win 3.11 edition. Before they ruined it with fancy graphics. Back when it was pure.
  • Quake 1 (Score:1, Insightful)

    by skrew ( 111096 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @08:26PM (#19738029)
    The game that spawned the online 3d FPS genre. The game that first popularized modding, CTF mode, teamfortress, and the other modes still in use in various quake descended games today. The grandfather of halo, counter-strike, and everything in the future. The game that defined a generation. Up untill today there is still Quake 1 servers online.
  • by nealrs ( 75987 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @08:40PM (#19738159) Homepage
    Seriously, how could they forget Xenogears? Sure, it had a lot of cut scenes - but it was amazing. The 2nd disc was obviously abbreviated, but it was the highlight of my entire PSX collection. I am somewhat horrified it is not on the list.

    I simply have not been able to play videogames since Xenogears, nothing has come close. RPGs, RTS, shooters, etc, nothing.
  • by VenomPhallus ( 904463 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @08:46PM (#19738191)
    I think this thread proves the ultimate futility of trying to compile an authorative top 100 - nobody will ever be happy. The purpose of these things is to generate a bit of chat (which clearly it's doing), and to maybe introduce people to games they've not played before. Any criteria is going to be flawed; there's no way of empirically measuring the quality of a game. Look how divisive something like Killer 7 can be - some people think it's definite top 10, others wouldn't see it even near the list.

    That said, it's a good list, I think. It's a mix of the obvious and the less obvious. The articles on the games (in the mag itself) are really well written, and they seem to have set out to avoid the predictable cliches that you're probably sick of reading about any of the Best Games In The World...Ever(TM). And actually, it's quite nice to read a modern take on the games I've played over the years.

    I don't think it's meant as a dictatorial "if you think this isn't the best 100 games ever, you're wrong" read, more a collectors item and a conversation starter.
  • by theeddie55 ( 982783 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @08:47PM (#19738197)
    Sonic should have been in this list somewhere (near the top), being the defining character of the Sega Mega Drive(Genesis) the best selling console of the 16bit generation.
  • by Clazzy ( 958719 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @08:47PM (#19738199)
    It's still possible that the original was better than the sequel, maybe? C&C and Red Alert I still play to this day, Generals got boring after a few weeks and I'm slowly losing interest in C&C3 already. Worms 2 played better than Worms 3D and I even dug it out about six months ago to play against some friends on it. Deus Ex may have had an outdated engine and crap AI but it was and always will be miles better than the sequel.

    The lasting appeal of a game is what makes it deserving of a spot in a top 100. In ten years time will people still play Doom 3? Would you go and dig out your copy of Doom 3 and give it a play with fond memories of the game? Doom got something right, mindless blasting of demons and monsters. Doom 3 did well too but didn't capture the same atmosphere as Doom did back in the day. Regardless, Doom 3 is a totally different game to the original anyway.
  • Half-Life (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Kingrames ( 858416 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @09:00PM (#19738323)
    without question half-life. It was the first game to have mod tools for the fans that were freely available as well as an actual effort behind them to ENCOURAGE mod-making, it was the first to make such a business model succeed on a massive scale, and encouraged the proliferation of community involvement in games, eventually resulting in what some would call "Web 2.0".

    Nothing in the history of gaming has impacted the WORLD in the way that it did, and for that reason I'll say that it was the best game ever.

    You may claim that other games did it better, I might even yield to the idea that the BUILD engine with Duke 3D should have the title, or maybe even quake or quake 2, but those games didn't succeed in luring in the mod community and fostering its growth as well as Valve did with Half-Life. The mod community for Quake 2 seemed to be just a thing that popped up around the game, but Half-Life actually welcomed it in and put effort into it.

    This truly was the beginning of the real internet we know today, and marked the point in history where the community surrounding a game became just as important as the game itself.

    I cast my vote for Half-Life, not any Zelda game. While Ocarina of Time was exceptionally well made, and possibly flawless, it IS possible to do more. And many games have.
  • by khephera ( 1009359 ) * <khephera54-slashdot@noSPam.yahoo.com> on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @09:03PM (#19738365) Journal
    Nethack. I'm still playing the DOS version.
    And I'm a female :)
  • by xmod2 ( 314264 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @09:18PM (#19738475)
    It seems to me that having a 'stadium-worthy' game would really limit your ability to innovate on the sequel without pissing off the entirety of South Korea.

    I recall reading that what Koreans wanted most out of Starcraft II was more Starcraft with better graphics.
  • Re:Counter-Strike (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @09:30PM (#19738575)
    If you are to judge a game on how many hours are played, you shouldn't forget Starcraft. That game is even older.
  • Re:Half-Life (Score:3, Insightful)

    by optimus2861 ( 760680 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @09:53PM (#19738747)

    without question half-life. It was the first game to have mod tools for the fans that were freely available as well as an actual effort behind them to ENCOURAGE mod-making, it was the first to make such a business model succeed on a massive scale, and encouraged the proliferation of community involvement in games, eventually resulting in what some would call "Web 2.0".

    Say what? Where were you when Doom was released, and in the years that followed? Doom had thousands of user-created custom levels, graphics, total conversions, out on the net by the time Half-Life got released. No computer game before Doom got that kind of community; I'm not sure the concept even existed prior to Doom. While it's true that id themselves didn't provide much for tools beyond the first .. darn, I forget what it was called. Node-builder? It was what "compiled" a WAD file into a usable form that Doom could play, IIRC. Anyway, id did specifically design Doom to be user-expandable and wrote right into the license that users could do it, spelling out the terms.

    Half-Life mods, particularly Counter-Strike, may have proved to have more staying power, but they built on the groundwork laid for them by Doom.

  • Re:Counter-Strike (Score:5, Insightful)

    by CastrTroy ( 595695 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @09:55PM (#19738757) Homepage
    With the Wii, Nintendo may be getting closer to VR than any other game system ever has. Remember VR Headsets, Force feedback controls, and all those other things that you never see around anymore? Well I for one think the Wiimote is the best progression we have towards actual VR. The fact that you can swing it like a golf club, or a tennis racket, or a baseball bat, and have it do the same thing on the screen is kind of exactly what people looking for VR have been dreaming of for a long time. It's not much of VR if you're just pushing a bunch of buttons but you happen to have a set of VR goggles.
  • Re:Counter-Strike (Score:3, Insightful)

    by FLAGGR ( 800770 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @10:12PM (#19738873)
    Twilight Princess is just Ocarina done up for the next generation. It's like the special edition star wars. Sure, it is obviously a sequel, has a different story and different temples etc, but it is a spirtual remake. If you played Ocarina as a kid, you will be smiling ear to ear when you revisit places like Zoras Domain. It really is OOT with awesome graphics (no, it's not GoW - it's not the texture sizes polygon counts and shaders that matter - it's the art of it, the scale. It looks like a real world and is big. Oblivion got the big part, but it doesn't look as good as TP by a long shot - it is bland and boring.) The original bits in TP are awesome as well. I want to warn you that the story development... stops for a bit... part way through the game. Nintendo doesn't have enough balls to one-up OOT, so they crippled it a bit. Basically, TP exists because of OOT, it is basically a tribute to it.
  • Re:Psychonauts (Score:2, Insightful)

    by bakura121 ( 1117149 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @10:13PM (#19738883) Homepage

    I wonder how many people have actually played it.

    I played it and absolutely LOVED it! I'm happy it made the top 100, but it surely deserved to have had a higher ranking.
  • Re:Counter-Strike (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @11:02PM (#19739265)
    FPS? Sophisticated? In the same freakin sentence?

    If you said turn-based strategy (e.g. Panzer General, Civilization), sure I'd say sophisticated & serious

    If you said real-time strategy (Starcraft, Command & Conquer), I may begrudgingly agree to the sophisticated & serious tags.

    But an FPS? Sorry, fraid not buddy. There's minimal "sophistication" in running around & trying to blow the head off the opposing teammembers so you can own some imaginary capture point.

    Compare to real life. The following are sentences people would accept (i.e., not laugh at)
    Chess is sophisticated.
    Soccer is sophisticated.
    Football strategy is sophisticated.

    Nobody says:
    Paintball is sophisticated.
  • Re:Counter-Strike (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Overly Critical Guy ( 663429 ) on Tuesday July 03, 2007 @11:11PM (#19739309)

    some of us like games to be sophisticated simulations that give a sense of immersion as if we are actually in a new environment.

    Translation--you want to play tech demos. You're the usual graphics whore.

    Sure I like the odd 1992-era candyland bubblegum game from time to time and that's when I break out my console, but for my style of serious gaming let's just say I'm apparently not Nintendo's target market.

    In fact, you're a tiny niche market.
  • ++elite (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ink ( 4325 ) * on Wednesday July 04, 2007 @12:32AM (#19739873) Homepage
    Elite is an incredible game.

    While we're on the subject of Commodore 64 goodness, what about Psi 5 Trading Company? I LOVED that one.

  • Re:Counter-Strike (Score:0, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 04, 2007 @12:46AM (#19739975)
    Nonsense. VR is in the mind, it has nothing to do with swinging your arms around like some kind of idiot. When a game is immersive enough to suspend your disbelief, the controls become irrelevant.
  • Re:Half-Life (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Kingrames ( 858416 ) on Wednesday July 04, 2007 @01:56AM (#19740309)
    Like I said, there were games before it that were moddable, but Half-Life really caused the biggest explosion in fan-driven community efforts.

    When the #1 most-played online multiplayer game in America is a MOD for half-life, you know something is up.

    And that doesn't even begin to tap into the vast collection of mods and user-created content for the game.
    Like I said, Quake and Duke Nukem had lots of user-created content, but when you compare the communities for the games, you'll see a huge difference. Why? I don't know and I don't care. But it's there.

    I was here when DOOM was released, and made my own episode for Duke Nukem, since the editor was fun and easy to make stuff with. But Half-Life was HUGE. Much much bigger than DOOM or Quake or DN3D. As much respect as I have for the classics that came before it, I'm not about to say that they, and not half-life, are responsible for half-life's huge commercial success.

    To do so would be illogical. As illogical, as, say, spelling DOOM without proper capitalization.
  • Re:One of the best (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Zeio ( 325157 ) on Wednesday July 04, 2007 @02:52AM (#19740629)
    I second that. I would say Ocarina of Time is one of my top 5 games, its awesome, I play it once a year or so in an emulator, and I hated all the Zelda games after it. It should be extended with more content. They ruined it with the follow on games, in my opinion. It was an impossible act to follow, really.

    Deus Ex is the best game ever. [Deus Ex 2 was one of the worst]

    I miss Deus Ex. I wish there were like 10 sequels using the exact format and an updated graphics engine.

    The awesome voice acting and huge amounts of immersion content made that game just awesome. The inventory system ruled. The skill system ruled. The game could be played many ways and the whole things was just good.

    I would say for console, Ocarina of Time and Super Metroid are the best console games that come to mind. But I have a long list of console game I really like.

    I really also like Herzog Zwei a lot and wish they would come out with a sequel to the awesome and fun Kid Icarus.

  • Re:Psychonauts (Score:4, Insightful)

    by NMerriam ( 15122 ) <NMerriam@artboy.org> on Wednesday July 04, 2007 @06:58AM (#19741805) Homepage

    It's an extremely standard grade platformer all the way through, with absolutely nothing special about the way it plays that separates it from the rest. Only its presentation really made a big difference.

    I tend to agree. Psychonauts is certainly one of my favorite games ever, but it isn't one of the best games of all time. It's simply unusual for a game to be so perfectly executed and pretty much flawless in every way, and then on top of that have so much great character, personality and entertainment. But it didn't really offer any new, exciting game concepts, it simply delivered to an astonishingly high level of polish.
  • Re:Ocarina of Time (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Stefanwulf ( 1032430 ) on Wednesday July 04, 2007 @12:51PM (#19744681)
    I just took a break from getting my ass kicked by the boss of the Shadow Temple...and I have to say OoT really holds its own today, at least as far as I'm concerned. I played Twilight Princess first, and it is a more polished game, with more attention paid to detail, but there are a lot of things about OoT that I'm loving. The atmosphere is excellent and the dungeons are really challenging, but in a way that keeps me coming back. Yeah, the textures look like a late 90's game, but hey, the color pallet in SMB looks like a mid 80's game, and mario's head has some serious stairstepping going on. I still love them both, however, because they both get the job done, convey what they need to, and display exemplary design.

    At what point did we loose the ability to distinguish between graphics being dated and graphics being poorly done?

"For a male and female to live continuously together is... biologically speaking, an extremely unnatural condition." -- Robert Briffault