Earlier today, Time unleashed its list of the All-TIME Top 100 Video Games. “Whether you’re into video games or not, they’re an integrally important part of our culture,” the magazine says in the introduction to the list. Organized by release date, the list is full of beloved retro games, like Pong and Space Invaders, and more recent hits—World of Warcraft, Wii Sports, and The Sims. Each entry includes a brief history of the game and why playing it was so much fun.
It’s hard to argue with putting Oregon Trail—a game that, for members of my generation, triggers both fond nostalgia and heated arguments about who was better at hunting bison—on the list. (Though based on this poll, some Time readers disagree.) “[Oregon Trail] was actually developed in 1971 by three student teachers at Carleton College in Minnesota as a teaching tool,” Doug Aamoth writes. “The game was refined and updated and eventually found its way to the Apple II in the early ’80s, where it gained in popularity before continuing on to multiple platforms between the ’90s and today.” If you're jonesing for an Oregon Trail fix, there are many options available to you: A slick update of the game for your phone, a zombie mash-up game called “Organ Trail,” and, with the right plug-ins, the original Apple II version is available on your new MacBook.
I also agree with the inclusion of SimCity 2000 (was there anything sadder than laboring over your city, only to have it destroyed by an alien monster?); Sonic the Hedgehog; and Super Mario Bros./Megaman/and every other NES game on the list. But where is StarTropics? SimAnt? Or my favorite game ever, Life and Death 2: The Brain, which confirmed that I should never, ever be a brain surgeon?
Do you agree with the Time list? What did they leave out? And what are your all-time top five favorite video games?