A community member asked a tough question recently: “What is your favorite video game of all time?” That’s honestly hard to answer, because it depends on the platform for me. I loved the original Legend of Zelda on the NES. I loved a lot of different games in the arcade setting.
On the PC, I loved Pandora’s Box years ago. On the Mac, I enjoyed playing World of Goo (even though it’s cross-platform). On my iPhone, I’m addicted to Angry Birds… I admit it. It’s just impossible to choose a favorite – almost.
Overriding all platforms, I’d have to go with Tetris, of course. That’s my favorite game, hands down. Period. End of discussion.
Everyone seems to have a favorite game, as well as a favorite game character. You already know that I am obsessed with Tetris. It’s my favorite game by far. It gets trickier to choose a favorite game character. Think back to the games you played as a kid. Mario was pretty awesome, eh? Some of the others I used to love were Donkey Kong, Sonic and Pac-Man. I know I’m leaving out a whole host of characters, though.
Empire magazine has compiled a list of the fifty best video game characters of all time. I’m glad I’m not the person who had to pick and choose, let me tell you. It would have been nearly impossible to do. Surprisingly enough, Mario is not number one. Valve’s Gordon Freeman, the entirely silent hero of the sublime Half-Life series, is Empire’s ultimate video game character.
My favorite? Tetris.
Which character is your all-time favorite? Are you shocked by Empire’s list? Do you feel they forgot anyone?
Can you believe that Pac-Man is turning thirty years old tomorrow? The little yellow dude doesn’t look a day over 25, I swear it. He has carried his age well all these years. If you’re like me and grew up playing this fantastic arcade game, you’re going to love the way Google is celebrating the anniversary. They’ve embedded a playable Pac-Man game as a Google Doodle on the homepage for the next two days!
Pac-Man may be the most influential video game of all time. The Guinness Book of World Records named Pac-Man as the best-known video game character on Earth, beating out Mario Brothers and Sonic the Hedgehog. Guinness also lists Pac-Man as the most successful coin-operated game ever. There are many popular versions of the game available for mobile devices, and you’ll find the arcade version in probably half the bars in this country. I know anytime I am out somewhere and see the game, I grab my quarters and migrate to the dot goodness on the screen. Twin Galaxies, which tracks video game world record scores, estimates the quarter-gobbler was played more than 10 billion times in the 20th century alone!
If you haven’t checked out the game on Google yet, give it a shot. It may not be exactly the same… but it comes darn close. Let me know your favorite Pac-Man memory. I’m willing to bet most of you have one.
Arcades. That’s such a beautiful word which brings back a lot of good memories for me. I spent as much time as possible during my younger days in the local video game arcade, feeding quarters into my favorite machines. Eric called from California the other night to talk about the olden days, and to ask my thoughts on where the future of arcades in the U.S. is heading.
I know that in some countries, game arcades are still a huge deal. I honestly think it’s the social aspect that attracts people. However, I’m not sure why we aren’t as social here anymore. Have we really turned in to a country that would rather just stay inside alone, rather than have to interact with others? I hate the thought of that.
I do still love classic games. Heck, I have a video game system right in my office! I can’t begin to count up how many hours I spent shooting things in Asteroids, or trying to rescue the princess in Donkey Kong. We cannot leave out PacMan, Mario and so many other awesome games, either.
Do you still play classic arcade games? Do you GO to an arcade, or do you prefer to play games in the confinement of your home?
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In the name of being the best, technology manufacturers are constantly pushing out new product, along with updates to older generation devices. Often, these new gadgets boast something new and improved, making our lives better in some way. Once in awhile, though, we get a product that makes us scratch our collective heads and wonder what on Earth the company in question was thinking of.
Are companies pushing themselves TOO hard to create the next big thing? Are they sometimes sacrificing quality – and sometimes pushing things out too quickly – in the name of beating their competitors to the punch? I happen to think this is absolutely the case, and cannot help but wonder why it’s so all-fire important to hurry? What’s the rush? Where’s the fire? Why don’t these companies take their time to create something truly unique? In my mind, they’d sell far more units – thus making more money – were they to take the time to truly think things through prior to production and rollout.
What are your thoughts? Do you agree with me, or do you think I’ve lost my mind (again!)?
I could sit here and crack jokes about how addicted I am to the Internet. In reality, though, it’s not a laughing matter. There is a tremendous difference between spending a lot of time doing what you love – and being utterly and helplessly addicted to it. Internet addiction is a reality, and it’s growing at an alarming rate. People who are addicted to the web are becoming obsessed with what they do there to the point that they ignore their “real” life, their responsibilities, and often their health. Marriages have broken up due to this. People have lost jobs due to this. Kids have been suspended from school because of this. It’s scary, and it’s real.
So, I ask you – are YOU addicted to the Internet? Have you taken the quiz, and read your results? When and where do you draw the line between having fun, and tumbling into an addiction? I’m interested in hearing your thoughts.
Several of you have been having this very discussion over on Geeks recently. There have been so many different games thrown out there that there doesn’t appear to be a clear-cut “winner” for scariest video game. I decided to ask some others what they thought about this. What’s your take? What game do you feel is the scariest?
lbutlr: Scariest Video game. 3rd party wad for Bungie's Marathon .. very dark, monsters lurking around corners, marathon. Very scary
Violent video games are once again being targeted. Over the past few years, there have been many tugs-of-war amongst politicians and consumers alike on this very subject. I’m not sure that there will ever be a middle ground, keeping everyone concerned happy. Some of my friends had a lot to say on this subject.
I went off about this on my show a few weeks ago. The law isn’t really targeting games, it’s actually trying to do something about a more prominent and strict ESRB rating. the problem isn’t in the ESRB ratings. The problem is two major things. first, a parent just won’t pay attention. I mean, if your six year old is playing GTA and the box says that it might not be good for people under 17, you may want to figure out why! Second, store clerks sell games to anyone. They just don’t pay attention to the apparent age of the person and the rating on the game. Maybe putting some more severe penalties on people selling games to minors could help a bit more than this. – Candace Holly
Sounds like Candace has the right idea. What good is a rating system if it’s not enforced? – Zach Underwood
There are no penalties if movie theaters let people under 17 into R rated movies or if rental places rent R-rated DVDs to 13 year olds. Why should video games be any different? Gaming companies are helping parents be more informed about the games their kids are playing through the ESRB rating. – Bjorn Stromberg
I think parents are just going to have to step into the room and look at what their kids are doing with the 30+ hours it takes to finish a video game. Laws can’t replace good parenting. If you restrict kids from buying games at retail, they’ll just go to BitTorrent anyways: kids are clever. – Nicholas Molnar
@Nicholas – Yeap! The stores that sell the games are only part of it. The biggest thing is..parents are just going to have to be a parent. – Candace Holly
how about this we just stop rating everything… we need to just STOP censoring the planet if parents and teens don’t care then why bother. Besides if X wants to play Y game they will find a way to do it I think the people playing the games need to know not the parents if you want to watch blood spray everywhere that’s your deal but if not you should know how to avoid the games – Cecil Sandus
I’m sorry but Patterson is a moron .. I hate it for the people of the great state of NY you guys deserve much better then him .. eveything he’s asking for is already in place and well all know it he’s just bringing up this tripe so he can continue to be NY governor. .. that’s all it is – JohnBfromMemphis via twhirl
Actually the government did a test and found that games ratings were the most well enforced of all media. Aside from that, all modern consoles can be set to completely block games of certain ratings from playing. The industry does need to communicate that better, and help parents figure out how to set it up. But really, the attacks on gaming are because politicians are playing on parents’ fear of the unknown. It’s an age-old tactic that happens to every form of media in it’s adolescence. – invariant
Are you happy with the current ratings placed on things like music and video games? Should the standards be removed… or get even tougher?
What is your favorite video game of all time? I’m talking go all the way back to the beginning of console gaming, and think forward. Walfred sent in his top five favorite games of all time, so let’s take a look at them, and see if your favorite is in there.
Tales of Phantasia for the Nintendo game system. This is a greatly unmentioned game with an excellent story line.
Donkey Kong 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest for the… you guessed it… Nintendo gaming system. I’m seeing a pattern here that Walfred feels Nintendo is the best console system of all time!
Tetris is the game that has been the most sold and most copied game ever. It is probably also the single most well-known game of all time. Walfred knows that this is probably #1 on most people’s list, but he has a different favorite.
Final Fantasy IV is the “bestest and goodest” game of all time, according to Walfred. Keep in mind, those are his words, not mine! He feels it has the best mix of characters, the best story line… and he feels the music is so good, it should be the National Anthem of every country in the world.
There you have it, Walfred’s top five favorite video games of all time. What’s your top five? I’m interested in hearing what they are. Leave a follow-up comment to this video with your list, or email me at [email protected]
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