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Personal System Sellers

When it comes to videogames, at some point you have to make a decision. If you want to play these wonderful things you have to acquire the hardware to be able to do it. Whether that be with your own cash, receiving it as a gift, borrowing a friend's etc.

For me that decision is ultimately always driven by the software, the games themselves. I go wherever the games I want to play the most are.

So these are the games that were the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back for me. The ones that pushed me to do the dang thing.

They aren't always the game I wanted the most (although in many cases they were), and they often aren't launch titles (although some certainly are), but they are the one that made it happen.

Honorable mentions: Sonic the Hedgehog and Halo: Combat Evolved. I liked both games but I didn't find them compelling enough and didn't find enough other exclusives I cared about to get into the Sega or Xbox ecosystems.

List items

  • The one that started it all for me. The idea of being able to play Super Mario Bros at any time I wanted to without having to scrounge up Quarters and find a way to an Arcade that had it? Seemed like a dream come true. Perhaps best Christmas present I ever got.

  • By this point I was knee deep in the gaming lifestyle. And well Mario was my favorite series although Zelda and Final Fantasy also merited equal consideration but they usually didn't ship at the beginning of console cycles. SMW looked incredible and gorgeous and I wanted to play it. Plus the SNES was clearly a slam dunk technical improvement over the NES (it was after all 16 bit. Twice as many bits!). So I knew what I wanted to ask for Christmas.

  • Even if it wasn't another innovative groundbreaking Mario that I was already practically trained to automatically want, the 3d was enough to wow me to get it anyway. And wow me it did. Not sure any launch title has ever enthralled me more than Mario 64.

  • The First hard choice I ever faced. I already had a n64. It didn't really make financial sense to have 2 gaming consoles which do the same thing. And yet Square had abandoned Nintendo, my friends all jumped ship to ps1, n64 games were super pricey and there weren't many of them. Eventually desire to play FF and JRPGs won out.

  • Frankly I thought a lot of the Ps2 launch lineup seemed iffy, but the Crowd Ai and graphics of DW2 blew my mind. Eventhough I wasn't completely crazy about the game itself (I enjoyed it tho), I could see it what it meant the PS2 hardware could do for other games. Or I felt I could anyway.

  • I had avoided handhelds to this point because the graphics were so simple and small I found it unenjoyable to use them, especially the OG Gameboy which was poorly lit and looked like a slightly better Tiger Electronics Screen.

    However once they added color, things started to get better rapidly. This and Oracle of Ages pushed me over the edge to get a Game Boy Advance. Yeah Advance, never say backwards compatibility never sold a system.

  • Luigi's Mansion didn't really appeal that much to me and I had drifted from Nintendo a bit due to frequent RPGs on the Playstations, but a New Mario (Sunshine) and the promise of a New Zelda (which ended up being Windwaker) and Metroid Prime suddenly made the Gamecube lineup seem very deep with must haves. Sunshine was probably really the one that got me to buy it (let's face it I'm sucker for Mario games) although all 3 were big factors, but I'm putting up Metroid Prime's pic up because it had cooler box art. That and I ended up being the most impressed by it of the three.

  • I don't remember which game actually got me to get a DS. It was probably NSMB based on my frequent past decisions seemingly exclusively made on Mario games. After the GBA broke the ice for me on handhelds I got to love the handheld experience on the DS.

  • Kinda like Dynasty Warriors 2, Wii Sports sold me on what the hardware could do even if the title itself didn't wow me. But unlike the Ps2 the software never really delivered and I personally found the wiimote cumbersome to use for extended gaming sessions. A harsh lesson of Buyer's remorse I'm very cognizant of for VR.

  • Probably the most surprising of the list to people who don't know me. After all it's a 3rd party multiplat and game most people consider ok but not spectacular.

    After feeling stung after my Wii experience and dealing with personal adversity I was contemplating getting out of the hobby altogether. But then TF:WFC came out and while it didn't match my conception of what the perfect Transformers game should be it looked far closer than what I'd ever imagine I'd get to play. As person who loves Transformers nearly as much he loves games, I knew I needed to play it. I ended up choosing PS3 because of backwards compatibility, I had been a Sony person for years already and it had a lot more exclusives I was interested than 360 did. Despite buying it, it took me a year or so before I got around to playing because of life stuff. But when I did discovered a surprisingly (to me) great library that I had been missing in my time as a Wii primary gamer.

  • I've long had PCs for work/academic reasons and they had usually been good enough to play a decent array of PC games (King's Quest, Quake, Warcraft, Monkey Island what have you), but I didn't feel compelled to build a "gaming PC" until my craptop was struggling to hold 15-20 fps in DOTA 2. Which obviously made it super super difficult to play with any chance of success. At that point I figured "eff it, everything's going digital anyway I might as well go PC for primary this gen and get lower prices and better graphics". So I did. I needed a new PC for work/home use anyway. The totally unforseen but very welcome arrival of Steam Link has validated this decision and I've been pretty happy with it.

  • This could have just as easily been A Link between Worlds. At some point I just looked at the usual crop of Nintendo franchises I liked coming out on 3DS and figured it was worth the money for me. But it was FE:A and LoZ:ALBW that pushed me into actually pulling the trigger. Nintendo continuing to support BC certainly helped make that easier as my DSlite is pretty beaten up by this point

  • I've wanted to play some PSP (e.g. Jeanne D'Arc) and Vita games for years, but there wasn't enough must have software to make me take the plunge. But then the PS TV arrived and dropped to 40 bucks and suddenly I was in. I wasn't going to pay basically 200 dollars to play p4G especially after seeing the Endurance run, but 60 bucks total? easy choice. Been pretty nice so far, I probably should have bought a proper Vita given how much I like the games. There's some good games there and seemingly more of the type of exclusives I care about than on the PS4.

  • I wasn't sold on the WiiU at first and still am lukewarm on the gamepad. But by the time Bayonetta 2 hit, I realized I was missing the majority of console exclusives I cared about because I didn't have this gen's Nintendo machine and that many are playable on the pro controller. Still a little gunshy about Nintendo consoles after the Wii.But who am I kidding, I sure I'm gonna to eventually buy the NX too, whatever it ends up being.

  • Finally the PS4 just hit that critical mass of games I miss out too much on PC. We'll see if this lives up to the hype.

  • Well I just bought this because I saw it an insane price I couldn't pass up, so I guess I'm buying a Switch at some point

    hunh I guess that's 2 systems Fire Emblem will have gotten me to buy.