5 Retro Video Games You Need To Play!
Video games have changed massively since the nineties, with graphics and processor speeds ever increasing, but with Pokmon making an impressive comeback, could we be in the midst of a retro gaming revolution?! Games were evolving faster than ever during the naughty nineties due to the super-fast technological advancements. However, here in the 21st Century the classic video games of the nineties have left an undeniable legacy in our culture, still holding the crown of producing some of the best video games ever made.
It would appear that the ‘pick up and play’ nature increases the fun factor of retro video games, proving it’s not just the graphics and special effects that make a top gaming experience. Thanks to the power of nostalgia (and the lingering memory of when you FINALLY defeated that Donkey Kong Mine Cart Carnage level!) we are keen to re-live some of our best (and worst) gaming memories!
If you get tingles when you think of how many times you fell off of Rainbow Road, you seriously need to revisit those old favourites! If you’re thinking, “I don’t have time to play games, I have a job now!” we’ve got your back! At Blue Banana we love nothing more than delving into yesteryear, so we’ve been time-travelling to the video gaming Golden Age, and here’s what we think are the top 5 retro video games!
Street Fighter Alpha 3
Platform: PlayStation 1 & 2, Dreamcast, GBA, PSP
Number of Players: 2
In our humble opinion, there can only be one true champion. Super Street Fighter Alpha 3 for PlayStation takes the title for 5th place on my list! Now we’re sure some of you are thinking “why SFA3 and not the famous street fighter 2?” Please don’t get us wrong, SF2 is hands down the biggest and best street fighter game due to its drastic advanced controls and insane one-on-one arcade fights that changed video game history.
The reason we opted for SFA3 is all down to its lack of media-fueled popularity and overexposure! One of the best points about this game is just how underrated it is! The retro classic is spot on with its huge 34 character selection, tight controls and visually stunning anime graphics. Not to mention all of our old favourite characters have been brought back to the Alpha series meaning you can even play as characters from the original games.
Featuring three different fighting styles, a bucket load of unlockables and even a co-op fighting mode, this PS1 phenomenon will seriously blow you away! If you play the game well you can unlock other modes, including; Team Battle, Survival, Dramatic Battle Plus and Final Battle. Any fighting game fanatic or fan of the newer SF series MUST PLAY this fighting game. Please note: we are still wearing our finger blisters with pride.
Gouls ‘n Ghosts
Platform: Sega Genesis
Number of Players: 1
This action platformer developed by Capcom has made the list mainly because we want you all to suffer what we had to endure growing up in the nineties! If you want an evening of sheer pain, fear and frustration then this is the game for you. Alright, maybe we’re not selling it but you’ve got to believe us when we say this game will give you and your mates an undeniably entertaining evening.
The premise is simple; you play as a character called Arthur who fights demons and zombies to finally save a princess… original right? On top of that, you can collect all sorts of weapons such as axes, swords, fireballs and other power-up abilities to help slaughter hordes of spine-chilling enemies. Through trial and error (okay, mostly error!) you will discover what weapons work best for you and also what stands in your way to reaching the end result of the final castle.
The controls on this game take a little getting used to; for example moves like Arthur’s jump can sometimes annoyingly change direction mid-air but other than this, with enough practice you can make it through with no cheap shots thrown at you by the game. Don’t give up, choose your weapon wisely and avoid fighting enemies in your underpants! Unfortunately this game is a little cut-throat, one hit & that’s it, you’ve lost your armour and you’re then left taking on armour plated killing machines in your white briefs! That’s not ideal.
Crash Team Racing
Platform: PlayStation 1
Number of Players: 4
If you had the N64 then you probably had Mario Kart 64 but if you had a Playstation then you definitely had the next best thing: Crash Team Racing! From the power-ups, large level design, characters and crazy courses you have everything you need to drift through an outrageously fun video game.
Enter this polygonal world with an open mind while driving your way through a wide range of race tracks; from sandy deserts to polar ice caps. You can use your power ups, including nitro, rocket launchers and many others to skid your way to first place. Skidding is very important apparently.
We got frantically competitive playing this game thanks to the fast pace which is exaggerated by features like Turbo Boost! Not only does this game appeal to speed-demons but players are also able to seek out insane jumps that gain you extra boosts; great for those that love to win! There are no friends in this game and speed is key, so make sure you don’t take any cr*p from anyone and if someone does dare cross you, make sure you get your revenge when you hit up that weapons box!
This game is simple but majorly effective, with solid kart racing fun and no lag, so grab some beers, (don’t drink and drive kids) and throw yourself a CTR party!
Tony Hawks Pro Skater 3
Platforms: N64, Ps1, Ps2 & Xbox, Gamecube
Number of Players: 2
To us THPS3 is quite possibly the best of the Tony Hawks series. (Especially when compared to the latest THPS5 which is just gross!) This pick-up-and-play game is retro perfection with its party style, easy to learn controls and huge range of multiplayer fun, it’s in the running to be one the greatest games ever made.
Everyone knos that THPS games have a rad soundtrack that kicks your adrenaline into overdrive while you’re pumping the half pipes and Ollie-ing over absurd gaps but that’s just one of the reasons why we love them so much. Whilst this game may not be as realistic as the current Skate franchise, the physics allow us to pull of sick tricks that are so much more comical to nail.
The multiplayer aspect is what really grinds these games to the next level! Including classics like Graffiti, Trick Attack, Slap, King Of The Hill, Control The Zone, Keep Away , Capture The Flag And Free Skate, it’s awesome to know that even beginners have a chance of getting good at some of these against a more experienced player.
We’re definitely not knocking 1, 2, 4 or the underground series but the level designs, range of special tricks and unlockable characters make this game a solid 10/10. This is the first game of the series to introduce a ‘revert’ that allows you to combine a string of tricks together. Plus once you’ve beaten certain challenges, you even get cash that you can spend at the skate shop on new videos, decks and characters, so there’s plenty to do.
We’re spoilt with choice with so many Tony Hawks games, although we personally chose number 3 because it holds the biggest gaming nostalgia factor to us as 90’s children. Plus it features Motrhead! How can you not like a game that features Ace of Spades in the soundtrack?
Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest
Platform: Super Nintendo
Number of Players: 2 (Taking it in turns)
For 32 bit graphics, DK2 really pushed the boundaries in giving us a beautiful atmospheric world to indulge in. Here we go on an adventure with Diddy and Dixie travelling through 8 vastly different worlds to rescue Donkey Kong. However, the story isn’t what’s important here folks, this game has next to no storyline and no dialog whatsoever but hey, we didn’t come here to screw around, we came to kick butt and take names.
This game wants you to feel like you’re behind enemy lines by pushing you to the max of your gaming capabilities with no real sense of what’s going to come next. You get completely sucked into severely dark atmospheric levels, from pirate ships, haunted forests and mountain top fortresses, all adding to the dramatic tension of the game. That said, this classic retro video game is brimming with plenty of gorgeous environments and fantastic art designs, featuring 3D rendered graphics, which are incredibly impressive for the time.
In DK2 we are faced with highly rewarding level designs and even when faced with the limits of your frustration, you are soothed by the impending, miraculous stage that is yet to come. This straight up classic side scrolling platformer ticks all the boxes for the perfect video game in our eyes and even the music has some of the most memorable tunes that we have ever heard in a video game, ever!
With 40-plus levels we are spoilt with so much to do and if you’re like us and enjoy a challenge then we really can’t recommend this game enough so prepare yourself for the flawless gaming experience DK2 has to offer.
*If you’re screaming at the screen right now because we’ve missed your all-time favourite, we wanna hear about it! So don’t forget to hit us up on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram with the tag #BBRETROGAMER!