Monday, December 3, 2012

This Year's List

Even though I skipped it last year (damn that Egyptian Rat Snake that enslaved me and forced me to polish his porcelain pig collection in an underground cavern all last winter!), this post marks the triumphant return of my year-end top ten lists. Except this time, I’m doing twenty instead of just ten! Partially this is to make up for the ten all of you, my adoring readers, missed out on last year, but mostly it is because I had so much trouble getting my list narrowed down so I decided I should just do 20. Therefore, without further ado, I present to you my list for this year: My Top 20 Favorite Computer Games!!!

So, I know before I attempted to make a list of the top twenty best computer games of all time, but I abandoned it for a few reasons:

1. Lists like that are so subjective. It is often leans more towards a list of games that the author liked most or is most familiar with, not so much the best ones. Also, it’s not like I have any hard data on number of sales/size of the computer gaming market/meta-analysis of critical reviews to give more legitimacy to my placement of each game.

2. What qualities do you even use to measure what game belongs on the list: innovation, popularity, style, fun, replayability, influence? Based on whatever you are looking for, the list of games change pretty dramatically.

3. The main reason, however, is there are many genres of games, like first-person shooters, I am not familiar with or interested in and there are many famous games I have not played. So I don’t feel entirely qualified to make a definitive list of the top games. My list would have been more the games that I had the best memories of and had the most fun with. So that’s the list I decided to make instead.

Now granted some use the cop out that any top computer games list is subjective and everybody has their own unique opinion, but, while this is true to some degree, why would you purport to make a definite list of the best games ever without putting in ample research and without trying to empirically state what the definition of best is and why your games are the best. Ultimately, I wanted to do a list that would be more genuine than something that you see on many similar best lists of games where the authors pretending to make a non-biased list but their list only includes one game made before 1993 and include one adventure game and 60% first person shooters and 30% real time strategy games.  After years of thought, I have determined that as opposed to trying to do a lot of research to make a factually-based and non-biased best games list, what I really want to write about is the games I enjoy playing the most and the wonderful memories I have of playing them.

Starting tomorrow, I will be posting about why I love each of these 20 computer games, how I fell in love with them including stories of all of you (well, except you Veronica, I don’t think I have ever played a computer game with you and also, not you nan bread), and why each of them stand the test of time in my heart despite the constant stream of new games with better graphics, innovative ideas, and streamlined modern gameplay and despite that time they had an affair with Betsy from marketing.

So, put on your favorite footie pajamas, grab a cup of hot chocolate, snuggle up with your favorite stuffed animal in front of the fireplace and get ready for story time where Grandpa Phil tells you what computerized games were like back in his day.

#15 Subspace
#16 Warning Forever
#17 Photopia
Come on Eileen: #18 Carax'95
In the Jungle, the Mighty Jungle: #19 Rockstar
#20 Oregon Trail


  1. Nice. This list is a good idea. I'm looking forward to hearing which games make the cut and get the Phil Waalkes Seal(fish eating aquatic mammal) of approval. You've always been sort of an adventure game aficionado so this should be pretty interesting.

  2. I'm afraid I have to correct you there, Phil. Actually, I remember everybody playing Family Feud on a really old computer you used to have in the attic on new year's eve 2008/2009. I remember that and an awkward high-five that you left me hanging, but don't you worry, I hold no grudges. So, in some way, we played a computer game together. Sorry, nan bread! You're all by yourself now...

    PS: Great job with the new banner, Joey! Very season appropriate!

  3. How could I forget about that time we played Family Feud? How could I forget trying to guess how much people paid for televisions back in 1987? I thought about putting Family Feud on the list since it is something I have played a lot for some reason. Also, your odd Mayank fact of the day: he was a beast at Family Fued.

    I do apologize for that awkward high five, but if there is one thing I am really skilled at it is being awkward.