Top Ten Must-Play Games to Revisit The SNES

4. Actraiser

SNES

Ever wanted to play god? The vengeful, fire and brimstone, Old Testament kind? Here’s your chance. Actraiser presents you as “The Master,” an ancient deity engaged in a long war against the great demon Tanzra. Ambushed, The Master was forced to return to the heavens and tend his wounds, and after a long while passed, he returns to see the hell the world has become under Tanzra’s control. The game is divided between a top-down perspective city-simulation in which you nurture a population, provide divine intervention, and aid the people in destroying the evils preying upon them, and then you switch to a sidescroller in which you inhabit a stone statue to cut to the heart of your enemies’ demonic stronghold and destroy him in single combat. It somehow gets across, with its rudimentary graphics and sound, the righteousness of your character’s actions, and it becomes all the more exciting, making for tons of replay value. Because mass murder is okay if you’re God and say you’re doing it in everyone’s best interest.

3. Chrono Trigger

SNES

Sometimes you come across something that pulls at the heartstrings. Sometimes you find a story that speaks of deeply human truths which resonate to your very core. Sometimes you find something which displays the gamut of the human experience: love, loss, joy, elation, frustration, anger, and all that evokes it. Chrono Trigger, for its silent, spikey-haired, katana-wielding eponymous protagonist, manages to do just that. It’s an old-school turn-based RPG with customizable characters and rosters. The more you experiment with character loadouts, the more your characters learn to work together to pull off devastating skill techniques. And that’s just the icing on the cake. Chrono, Luca, Marle, Robo, Ayla, Frog, Magus, I could go on for hours dissecting them all, but it is how they are both unique and part of a far and away richer tapestry that makes Chrono Trigger sing across the senses. To call it a romp through time and space would be puerile; to call it an examination of how our actions have consequences even we cannot fathom would be getting a little warmer. It’s fun too.

2. Legend of Zelda: A Link To The Past

link-to-the-past1

Link searches for Zelda. What more is there to say? You encounter lots of people whose pots you destroy and whose rupees you steal. You obtain new items in dungeons which allow you to progress to the next dungeon in sequence (or screw around for the next three hours looking for all the extra stuff the developers threw in their to drive those of us with obsessive compulsive disorder mad as loons). What makes this game better than those that came later? Nothing. It’s not better, it’s not worse, it’s just different, and we should all embrace different. At least until it becomes normal, which is no longer different.

1. Earthbound

SNES

Earthbound is a straight RPG that’s become a cult classic. It’s like someone took the indecisions, fuzzy logic, hopes, and dreams of childhood and threw them onto the screen in quirky graphics, neon colors, and a soundtrack that somehow just fits while objectively being monumentally strange. You play as Ness, a young boy from Onett, who goes out late one night to find a fallen asteroid which contains an alien in the form of a bee. The bee befriends you (pun totally intended), warns you of the dangers of the Giygas (Not to be mistaken with Gygax, who is awesome), and helps you fight his minions until being accidentally squashed by the mother of your idiot neighbor. Things stay weird from there as you set out with ball cap and baseball bat to save the world, taking on three distinct and different allies in the process. It’s hard to describe the individuality of the game without just showing it to you, so here it is in all its 16-bit glory for your consideration and enjoyment.

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About The Author

John Richard "Chrysophase" Albers
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John Richard Albers, an author, armchair psychologist, amateur historian, freelance, peacemaker, dragonslayer, warmaster, and part-time herald of the apocalypse, hunts ghosts when he isn't hunting crazy people. He holds dual bachelor’s degrees in Psychology and English Literature, is working toward a degree in parapsychology, and is acting CEO of Prior to Print Proofreading LLC, where he gets to torture editors instead of them torturing him for once.

6 Responses to Top Ten Must-Play Games to Revisit The SNES

  1. JaiGuru says:

    Oh look, all the same games EVERYONE WHO EVER EXISTED keeps talking about. Glad Stumbleupon brought me here.

    • Thanks for dropping by, and be sure to send us a link of your own work; we’d love to read it.

      • Brian says:

        The point is that you’re an uninspired follower. Every article on the web these days is the exact same thing linked from buzzfeed, zergnet, click me!-type- websites.

        How much do you even get paid to make these?

        • And my point is that it’s easy to criticize when you put nothing of your own out there to be considered and judged. You want to be considered anything more than another follower’s follower whose bitching about the work here ironically pays us more in advertising space the angrier you get, feel free to do better and gain a greater following. There are all sorts of articles here. Plenty of interviews of video game developers, exposes by skilled video game journalists, but what you’re commenting on and what you were drawn here by are the kinds of articles that people actually read. They’re our bread and butter because they draw readers while the work we’re really proud of languishes unnoticed. You want something new, start patronizing what’s new so content producers can get paid to actually produce something newsworthy instead of having to do it pro bono and for the sake of their own pride as journalists.

  2. JaiGuru says:

    Holy christ you dare use Hunter as your pic when your post has literally redefined mediocrity?

  3. Bob Marlow says:

    I like your list. And you are very right about Chrono trigger. it goes really to your heart.
    I have played this game a lot – and the thing is i still find sometimes something new about it. Or i i fail killing bosses like Magus last time and try to find a help from a walkthrough.

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