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Posted by ArclightBorealis

***WARNING: LARGE AMOUNTS OF TEXT*** 
 
It's 2010 here in Alaska, since many of you are probably already in the new year right now. 
 
It's been (a little over) 10 years since I first got into videogames. Christmas of '99, I got an N64 with Pokemon Snap and Yoshi's Story. Afterwards, it became tradition for me to go to blockbuster every other friday to rent a new N64 game, which changed to Gamecube games in '02. My first four years had been purely Nintendo, and the next six after that would expose me to Playstation. I still own all the consoles I had before in one way or another (Wii is backward's compatible with Gamecube titles, so I'm covered there). I have just played so much in a decade span, so after thinking about this beforehand, I'm gonna give my personal Top 10 games of the Decade. These games I may not have experienced at the time of their release, or may not be the best in comparison to others released at their time, but that's not the point here. The point is that these games left some sort of memory in my mind, something that I'll fondly remember for doing lots of things, whether it gets me into a series or surprises me with something seriously awesome. 
 
So, with out delay, my Top 10 Games of the Decade (games shown in order of release, not actual position on list)
 
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The Legend of Zelda Majora's Mask (2000)
I forget exactly when I actually got my hands on it, but it was probably about 8 years after release that I bought a copy on eBay. At this point, I was already a fan of the Zelda series. I had Ocarina of Time, Wind Waker, and Twilight Princess, and I wanted to complete the 3D Zelda games. 
I love it, just because it is so different from the other Zelda games, which have followed the same formula and plot elements. And the game is just so dark in its mood. It's not really afraid to tell you that there are people in Termania who are already dead, and everyone else is sufferring with their lives. Infact, these NPCs were so well done I would sometimes ignore the main quest every now and then, just to see what's going on with someone and try to fix things. Reuniting Anju & Kafei, that is the best sidequest out of the entire series. Even with the moon minutes away from crashing, with the end of the world so close, it's comforting to see that you helped turn the fate of an individual, though death will be unavoidable. That sidequest, along with the game's other interesting and, sometimes disturbing, moments, makes it a game I'll remember along time. 
 
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Super Smash Bros Melee (2001)
I love it when I get a game that lasts me an entire summer vacation. Finishing second grade, I got a Nintendo Gamecube with Super Smash Bros Brawl. Even with one controller with no one else to play with (most of the time), I was still hooked. I...I can't even describe just how freaking ADDICTED I was to this game. Yes, addicted, the only time I actually stopped was either when I had to eat dinner, go to bed, or when my parents told me I played enough for the day (the last I was not too fond of). 
Now, I used to have a friend that was playing the game as much as I was, though I would end up loosing terribly to him. He even got everything completed on his save, including trophies. He let me copy his file just so I wouldn't have to suffer trying to beat the later challenges in Event Match. Although my copy, along with my gamecube was later stolen in early 2004, I rebought it five years later used. And I miss having everything unlocked, including trophies. I still have most of what I am able to get, but I just can't earn the rest. I'm not good enough. 
I don't play it as much as I used to when I was younger, and I've since moved on to Brawl. But this game was one of the most fun, addicting experiences I ever had. Haven't really had anything else come this close to making me play it for a long time. 
 
 
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Metroid Prime (2002)
Again, a game that I did not get to until a few years later. I had actually watched a friend of mine play it a little after it came out, but never actually got to try it. After getting gamefly, and rebuying a gamecube, I finally tried out Metroid Prime. Oh man...this was like another Ocarina of Time for me. It blew my mind, especially when I played beyond the Frigate Orpheon, which was the part I saw my friend play before. Landing on Tallen IV had me in awe, and then thinking where to go next. Sure, playing it just to reach the end would be a nightmare, but playing the game just to get lost in the world is actually fun. Let's you appreciate the world that Retro Studios had crafted, plus finding all those hidden missle packs and energy tanks. 
I'm actually kinda scared about going back to it on Gamecube, becaue after having played Prime 3 with IR control, I could probably only think about how much time it would take me to get used to the controls again. At the time, I had no problem, but because of Prime 3, I thank and blame Retro for giving a control setup that is superior to a single and/or dual analog setup. 
 
 
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The Legend of Zelda The Wind Waker (2003)
Wind Waker was actually the first Zelda game I had seriously played. I had Ocarina of Time for a short while, but I didn't play it all that much. Just after seeing the many characters and franchises represented in Smash Bros, I decided to give Zelda another go, so I gave Wind Waker a rent from blockbuster, and it was fun. The style had me lured in alot more than Ocarina of Time, which kinda scared me at the young age I was at. I would later buy a refurbished N64 with the game and, even with it being 6 years after the game's release, I probably had as much fun as others did when they first played it in '98. But back to Wind Waker. 
Game was absolutely beautiful. Again, the art style is what drew me into it, with bright colors, fun character designs, and while the boat sailing gets tedious, there's still a sense of exploration to had, filling out your sea chart. 
One thing I will like in particular about this game, in comparison to the rest of the series, is how it makes you feel symapthetic for Ganondorf, the King of Evil, just before the final battle. You actually get to learn about his past, and why he sought to gain absolute control of the world. Didn't change the fact you had to kill him, but it was a very nice thing they did with the character. 
 
  
 
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Sly 2 Band of Thieves (2004)
Ratchet & Clank Up Your Arsenal (2004)
Jak 3 (2004)
Okay, I know it's three games here, but it's a three way tie, and this is MY list. They all accomplished the same thing for me: Selling me on the Playstation brand. 
The one thing these games have in common is that they are all platformers. I love Mario games, so I enjoy platforming, and after looking at these series, they put their own neat twist on things and I was sold. 
Sly Cooper had stealth mechanics that weren't unforgiving, and were very fun. 
Ratchet & Clank had ridiculous weapons and gadgets, plus a fun cast of characters in a very cartoony alien universe. 
Jak & Daxter is just epic. Naughty Dog knows how to tell a story. 
And the above three mentioned games are all the games that really had me on board, with them being the best in their series (well, except Up Your Arsenal, A Crack in Time takes that spot). But I couldn't really decide which one to pick, so I put all three in the same spot. I love 'em all.  

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Shadow of the Colossus (2005)
A year after I was on board the Playstation 2, I signed up for the Playstation Underground, and as 2005 was in the last quarter, I received a demo disk with games like Battlefront II, Jak X, and other games, but the one that I really wanted as a result of that disc, was Shadow of the Colossus. Infact, I would just play through the demo over and over seeing how fast it took me to kill the colossus until I found the time to put the game on my Gamefly Q.  
By the time I finished it, I had a much bigger appreciation for the game, as the ending still sticks in the back of my memory. By this point I had been playing games that had a story as one of its main features, but the actual lack of story telling in this game was very effective. I immediately started playing through the game again and paid more attention to things other than the expansive world and the humongous colossi. I payed attention to changes in the main character's appearance and things in the cutscenes. 
Man, I will never forget this masterpiece. 
 
 
 
 
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The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblvion (2006)
Coming out of 2005 from Shadow of the Colossus, I really didn't have much more games to go through. Atleast not any that could be given a lot of time to invest in. That's where Greg Kasavin and his Gamespot Review of this game got my attention, and my exposure to the Elder Scrolls series. 
I was first surprised at the fact it was in first person, seeing as I didn't think that was common for an RPG. Playing it was definetely different when it came to leveling up, but the freedom and amount of things to do in this game was overwhelming. While I didn't have a 360 to play it, I got back into playing more PC games. I probably can't count how many hours were spent on it, but I have alot of fun moments that would be too many to count. 
This game also helped me make a new friend by the time I got into middle school, 'cause in one of my classes we were sharing what we did during the summer, and the guy brought up that he "saved the land of Cyrodill." Boom. A new friend that also likes video games as much as I do. 
 
 
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Super Mario Galaxy (2007)
Before Uncharted 2 came out, this was the game I had felt would be my number 1 game of the decade. Super Smash Bros Brawl had been delayed to 2008, so this was the last 2007 game I had my eyes on. It was Mario. I love Mario. I ordered it from Gamestop online and got a commerative coin as a little bonus (I still have it). Now the game? A-MA-ZING! 
Even in a generation where the best graphics are on HD platforms, Mario Galaxy is still pretty gorgeous. Not only are the graphics superb, but the controls are kept simple and the motion controls are tight and responsive. You almost forget that you're flicking the wiimote to make Mario spin, you're just doing it out of nature. That, and the sequences that involve mario ballancing on a ball or riding a manta ray make great use of the controls as well. 
So many other good things to say about this, from the orchestrated soundtrack, to the fact you can finally play as Luigi in a 3D Mario game, this definetely one of Nintendo's best. 
 
 
 
 
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Sin & Punishment Successor to the Earth (2007)
Okay, there wasn't anything about 2008 in particular that I could put on this list, so another game from '07. While released in 2007, it was originally released in 2000 in Japan. It's still a part of this decade, so it still counts. 
Needing to get rid of left over Wii points, I used them to buy this game. I was a bit curious, having heard mentions of it before and seeing IGN's review for it from 2000 and 2007. I bought it, and I had a hard time forcing myself to quit. It's essentially a successor to Space Harrier, but with triple the insanity. This would be my first ever import game and also would make me a fan of Treasure co. ltd. 
It's Japanese. It's weird. It's insanely awesome. Being one that likes anime, I liked the presentation of the game's story, however "terrible" it may be, but that's part of it's charm. You're really only playing it just to shoot tons of enemies and to take on super large bosses. My favorite moments still, the battle against the Armed Volunteers fleet, flying around blowing stuff up, and also the final boss battle. Fighting against an entire planet? Dude, awesome! 
 
 
 
 
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Uncharted 2: Among Thieves (2009)
Forget Super Mario Galaxy, this game had me on for the whole ride and I would not stop till I reached the end. I mean, what other way to start the game than to have Nathan Drake wake up, all bloody and wounded, in a train car, that is hanging over a cliff and is about to fall. And that's just only one of many narrow escape sequences and other crazy set pieces that make Uncharted 2 such a thrill. You get a whole cast of believable characters, a very menacing villain, very polished gameplay, and on top of that a great multiplayer component that takes its inspirations from Call of Duty, plus adds a set of co-op levels. 
Okay, I can definetely say a lot more about this game, and it makes me want to play it again right now. It's just so amazing. Near perfect. Heck maybe it is, though that might be a stretch. 
 
GAME OF THE DECADE FOR ME!!!! 
 
 
 
 
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So those were the games in order of the year they were released. Now to have them put against eachother in a traditional list. 
 

Top 10 Games of the Decade: The 2000s.

1. Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
2. Super Mario Galaxy
3. Super Smash Bros Melee
4. Sin & Punishment Successor to the Earth
5. The Legend of Zelda Majora's Mask
6. Metroid Prime
7. Shadow of the Colossus
8. The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
9. Sly 2, R&C: UYA, Jak 3 (three way tie)
10. The Legend of Zelda The Wind Waker 
 
Now there is one thing I really wanted to blog about on Christmas, but I was too lazy/caught up in what I was doing that I wanted to blog about. What was it? That I got a SEGA DREAMCAST!  
 

 
One of my goals from the past few years was to get a Sega Dreamcast. After reading about what I missed out on and its very short lifespan, I wanted to try out sega's swan song in the hardware market. And after putting it off, placing my purchases on other things I decided, "you know, I'm gonna ask for it as a Christmas gift." Luckily they had a few dreamcasts in the used game section of a comic book store I was in. I asked my parents to get it for me as a gift, and while I was uncertain they wouldn't get there in time, thinking other people would have already bought them, they did. I got a dreamcast which actually came with a 3rd party controller, a jump pack, and Jet Grind Radio. I later realized the pack that was bought didn't come with a VMU, so my mom had to go and buy one, and she did. 
 
Everything has been in good condition. The VMU didn't have any batteries that would let me use it on its own, so it can only really be used with the controller at this point. The 3rd Party controller I have is pretty good, though it is quite big. And the jump pack really gives off quite a vibration. I don't think I've really felt such a sensation ever since I first used a gamecube controller. 
 
Jet Grind Radio is very fun. I actually beat the final boss yesterday morning, so right now I'm taking a little break from it so I can play some other games, but already I've had a fun time. Especially when painting grafitti. Using the control stick to create motions for painting is very cool. I can already do Beat's grafitti patterns without needing to look at the onscreen cues. Plus the game is so dang colorful. It's pretty bright, and on a different note, I will never understand what makes it okay in Tokyo for the police to bring SWAT teams, parachute squads, and TANKS, into a civilian place just to catch a roller blading vandalist punk. Oh well, doesn't change the fact that the game is rather fun, despite lack of actual camera control. But hey, I can play the N64 Zeldas fine without the need for manual camera control, so I guess it doesn't bother me so much here. 
 
Finding all the Grafitti Souls and Jet Rankings should keep me busy until I buy another Dreamcast game. That's one of my goals starting here in 2010, and beyond. 
 
So, 2009 is done, and so is my scheduled game playing for that year. I have successfully started and finished the following: 
 
LoZ: OOT 
Super Mario 64 
Paper Mario 
R&C 
R&C Going Commando 
Sly Cooper 
R&C Up Your Arsenal 
Star Fox Adventures 
Ratchet Deadlocked 
DK Jungle Beat. 
 
Starting on Monday I will begin playing through The Legend of Zelda The Wind Waker, and Super Mario Galaxy. Followed by: 
 
The Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess 
Super Mario Galaxy (as LUIGI) 
Okami 
Super Smash Bros Brawl Subspace Emissary, & Event Match 
 
Yeah, not that much left compared to when I started in late August, but so far, I've had fun being able revist these games and be able to complete them thanks to having a schedule. 
 
Other than that, I've just got a bunch of random Virtual Console stuff that I'm messing around with until the break is over. Some I purchased months ago that I haven't gotten to, some I purchased with points cards that I got for Christmas yet still haven't started playing. I would like to talk more about that stuff, but I'm sure this post is getting to be way to long. Probably the longest blog I've ever done. So...
 
HAPPY NEW YEAR, GIANTBOMB!!!  

I'd have a more excited looking picture of myself, but I'm too lazy to use a camera right now, so here's this old pic instead.
 
(pray to God I didn't leave too many typos)
Posted by Linkyshinks

Happy New Year Duder.  
 
Congrats on your acquisition of one of the greatest consoles ever - Dreamcast.  You should visit the forum for some ideas as far as future game purchases, and of course your always welcome to ask for my opinion on any DC game.   I recommend you download the last version of the Utopia Boot Disk - in order to play games for free. If you want your console to last, (-DC has issues)  I suggest you perform the very simple internal modification I've posted in the forum. You should also watch the odd care video on Yourtube, I can point you to one that unfortunately may become useful to you down the line.
 
 
(those batteries are dirt cheap) 

Edited by ArclightBorealis
@Linkyshinks said:

"Happy New Year Duder.  
 
Congrats on your acquisition of one of the greatest consoles ever - Dreamcast.  You should visit the forum for some ideas as far as future game purchases, and of course your always welcome to ask for my opinion on any DC game.   I recommend you download the last version of the Utopia Boot Disk - in order to play games for free. If you want your console to last, (-DC has issues)  I suggest you perform the very simple internal modification I've posted in the forum. You should also watch the odd care video on Yourtube, I can point you to one that unfortunately may become useful to you down the line.  (those batteries are dirt cheap)  "

Thanks. I'll be sure to check it out.