Top Five Video Games From The 90s
I recently posted on my Facebook (yes, I am old and use the archaic form of social media), a picture of all my PlayStation controllers from the PS1 to the newest PS5. I have all my original systems, minus some repairs I had to make on my PS4. Funny that the older ones still work perfectly fine, and the newer ones give me problems. But I digress. Gaming, along with music, has always been a bit part of my life. Now I didn’t sit in front of a screen day in and day out playing video games. But I did play them enough for them to be a significant part of my past, present, and future. I have two podcast episodes regarding video games of the past (find them here) and I have a few other top-five lists that include many a game that I have enjoyed. This list is geared toward the games I played in the 90s. These are just console games for the moment. I will venture into PC gaming on another list. In the meantime, I hope these bring back some memories or maybe even give you some new games to find and play.
- Jet Moto 2 – PlayStation – 1997
This is a racing game set in a futuristic world, featuring hoverbikes and races for one or two players. The game features a range of different bikes that have their own strengths and weaknesses. Like any other racing game, you can hover over land, water, ice, and lava, making driving more difficult. The tracks have jumps, interesting backdrops, and just what you are looking for in a racing game.
When I first started gaming, it was mainly platform gaming, like Super Mario Brothers. But I was always partial to racing games. Not the basic round-a-circle racing like Nascar and the like. I looked for tracks that put you in different areas. Need for Speed Hot Pursuit was probably the best one for scenic highways. Just so relaxing, but at the same time fast-paced, plus being tracked by police you get that adrenaline rush you wanted. Jet Moto was different, and I liked that.
2. Crash Bandicoot – PlayStation – 1996
This is a platforming game that follows the adventures of Crash Bandicoot. The game takes place on the mysterious Wumpa Islands, where Crash must rescue his girlfriend Tawna from the clutches of the evil Dr. Neo Cortex. Players are taken on a journey through vibrant and diverse levels, filled with challenging obstacles, enemies, and cleverly designed platforming sections. This is a classic game, which I am sure many have heard of. It had awesome 3D graphics for its’ time and honestly can be easily played now with enjoyment.
Again, I come from playing platform games anyway. So, when this game came out, I had to play it. Plus, the characters for funny and interesting. It kept you engaged and gave you a level of challenge you may be lacking in other games. They are still releasing Crash games. But if you want that bit of nostalgia, go back to the original. You won’t be disappointed.
3. Vigilante 8 2nd Offense – PlayStation (also on the Dreamcast and N64) – 1999
A vehicular combat game set in an alternate version of the 1970s immerses players in a post-apocalyptic world where rival factions battle for control using heavily armed vehicles. Players can choose from a diverse roster of quirky characters, each with their own unique vehicles and special abilities. The game offers an array of thrilling game modes, including a story-driven campaign, arcade battles, and multiplayer mayhem. With its fast-paced gameplay, destructible environments, and an arsenal of weapons at your disposal.
My brother and I used to play this game ALL the time. In fact, I believe if you asked him today what the cheat code is for it, he could probably recite it for you (some series of x’s and o’s). The characters and vehicles are awesome. I liked that their special abilities were each unique. One character would release a disco ball that shot ammunition in all directions. It was a very fun game. I still have it and recently played it with my son. Gotta keep that legacy going.
4. Super Mario World – Super Nintendo – 1991
Another platforming adventure follows the iconic plumber, Mario, on a quest to rescue Princess Peach (again) from the villainous Bowser. Set in the colorful and expansive Dinosaur Land, the game offers players a vast array of levels to explore, each brimming with secrets, power-ups, and challenging obstacles. With tight controls and precise platforming mechanics, players guide Mario through perilous landscapes, from lush forests to treacherous caves and soaring castles. Super Mario World introduces the lovable dinosaur companion, Yoshi, who can swallow enemies, gain special abilities, and add an extra layer of strategy to the gameplay.
Yoshi. That should really be the only reason why you should play this game. I remember this game particularly because there was a level where they had moving platforms that would rotate, slide back and forth, and give out from under you, making it a rather difficult level to take on. When I completed it, I felt like I won the Nobel Prize. I think this a very re-playable game and if you have a SNES, you can find this game easily on eBay or at your local yard sale.
5. Tiny Toon Adventures: Babs’ Big Break – Gameboy – 1992
As you can tell I like platform games. Based on the popular animated TV show, the game follows the energetic and charismatic character Babs Bunny on her quest to become a big star. Players navigate through various levels inspired by classic Hollywood movie sets, such as Westerns and horror films while overcoming enemies and collecting power-ups. The game offers a mix of platforming challenges, puzzle-solving, and boss battles, all presented in a vibrant and cartoonish art style that captures the essence of the beloved TV series.
This was my first brand-new game for the Gameboy, my dad would get second-hand games at the flea market. I played this game for so many hours to get through it. There we a few areas that would annoy the hell out of me. But I got through it and again it felt amazing when I finished the game. I loved Tiny Toon Adventures, so the game was an easy sell for me. I tried to show my son Tiny Toons, but he never seemed to be interested in it. How unfortunate.
I have more. Of course, I do. I will do another list later. But this is just a taste of some games I know I spent way too many hours on. I would happily do it again. What were some of your favorites? Did you play any of the above? Now I am going to go and play some Tiny Toons on my Gameboy, I’ll see you in a few hours!