By CoolDrMoney 1 Comments
It's New Years Eve 2009, the final day day of the decade. While, just like everything else, I'll place the 90s over the 00s for video games, it certainly was a much more important decade in terms of gaming for me. I entered 2000 with a Genesis, SNES, and Gameboy Color and I leave 2009 with just about every console under the sun. I've been thinking about my favorite games of the aughts since this past summer, and now it is finally time to kick it off. Games 50-41 tend to represent early decade entries that I first experienced years after their initial release. The fact that such an impact was still made attests to their high quality.
It just so happened that one of the most significant releases of the decade ended up at number 50. While I wasn't overcome by a revolutionary blueprint for virtual city fun, I can't deny that GTA3 is a great game. Occasional clumsiness could be forgiven thanks to an excellent crime story and setting.
My short stint with the Dreamcast wasn't terribly successful. By 2005, most of the best titles had been ported or lost a battle with time. Jet Grind Radio was the absolute highlight. The soundtrack, characters, settings, and presentation oozed style. Hell, by introducing cel-shaded graphics to the industry, the game was actually revolutionary for looking cool.
The Ratchet & Clank commercials will probably go down as some of the most memorable game commercials from the 00s. They summed up the game pretty well; cartoon-crazy weapons and a good sense of humor. The only part missing was the really well crafted adventure, you had to purchase the game for that.
It may be Battlefield 2: Lite, but without a gaming PC, it was an ample substitute for one of the best multiplayer shooters ever released. The open field, class based, 12 on 12 battles were a lot of fun, and gave me my modern warfare fill for the decade. Also, ditching helicopters with passengers who didn't know how to parachute was griefing gold.
A forgotten entry in a forgotten franchise. Wave Race: Blue Storm is an overlooked Gamecube launch title that successfully builds upon the water physics, visuals, and analog control of it's N64 predecessor. Also, just like its big brother, Blue Storm is a unique racer that ages remarkably well.
The chaotic, comedic, deliberately R rated tale of Conker's "bad fur day" was the last hurrah for the N64 in 2001, and it's remake arrived toward the end of the line for the Xbox. Live & Reloaded retold the excellent, movie spoof happy, fubar yet tongue in cheek situations of the original while adding in an online multiplayer component that provided a much appreciated break from Halo 2.
The Crash Bandicoot games were strictly linear experiences. Naughty Dog headed in a different direction with Jak and Daxter, focusing more on exploration and collection than streamlined action. The key is that they crafted a thematically varied world that was interesting to thoroughly trek and push that completion percentage toward 100. Their ability to produce lovable, mascot-caliber characters remained intact.
The ultimate band experience. Rock Band 2 may be a 1.5 sequel, but that was a stellar blueprint to refine upon. A better soundtrack and the necessary tweaks have established Rock Band 2 as the ideal band game platform, frequently returned to thanks to weekly DLC and the undying equation of widespread appeal and local multiplayer.
Motorstorm is the white knuckle, arcade style, off-road racing experience my white trash side has always yearned for. Multiple car classes duking it out on jungle gym race tracks, complete with mudpools, narrow bridges, and big ass ramps. There really is no better way to explain it than a messy storm of off-road vehicles striving for 1st by any means necessary.
The platforming sequences in The Sands of Time are some of the best the entire genre has to offer. It's an absolute thrill maneuvering through the obstacles and platforms separating point B from point A. The story, setting, and protagonists are textbook charming. The only thing holding this game back from a legendary stature is a lousy combat system that often gets in the way.
That's 50-41. This list will continue with 40-31 in the new decade.