If I had to provide a list of my favorite games ever, these would probably be in the top 20

Actually ordering these games would be a task that I could only do with a gun to my head, but all of these games are amazing and totally worth playing.

List items

  • The better version of probably my favorite RPG ever. I have greater love for the Western style RPGs in general, but with only one exception, none have even come close to capturing me so completely as this game. It's the only time I've ever spent 100 hours playing through the story of a game only to want to immediately start it again. I'll probably end up writing a really long, sincere, gushy blog post about why I love this game so much, but that's for another time.

  • Maybe I'm a heretic for saying this, but this is truly my favorite Metroidvania. I love Super Metroid and SotN as well, but this game just means so much more to me. Everything in this game just feels and looks so good. The movement is basically perfect, most of the various particle effects and filters hold up a decade later, and the sound design is sublime. In terms of my own personal experience, this was also the first time that I meaningfully interfaced with a first-person shooter (even if this is more of an action game), paving the way for some other games I love.

  • Remember earlier when I said that there's only one WRPG I like as much as Persona 4? This is that game. I freely admit that the part where you actually play the game is probably the worst part of this game, but despite that, this is a story-driven experience that works precisely because of the agency of the player. Well, let me qualify that a little bit - while the combat and interface of this game are pretty lackluster, dealing with them in order to interact with the characters of this world pays off tenfold. This is a game where when asked a simple question, you are presented options where you may answer truthfully in the affirmative or negative, lie, use your charm to dodge the question, threaten the asker, or do something else entirely. Perhaps the most mature story ever told in a game, Planescape: Torment is a meditation on life, death, and the nature of humanity, and it's one of my favorite games ever.