As a child, there was nothing more important when you got home from school than crashing yourself in front of a games console and losing yourself in that world.
Hours would pass by and your eyes would still be glued to the screen, thinking to yourself just “one more level”. Let’s face it; it was never just “one more level”.
To celebrate our love for console gaming, we’ve decided to take a look back at some of the most iconic games of the past and reminisce about the memories.
Starting off with one of the big ones, our first throwback is the original Crash Bandicoot games.
If you were a kid in the 90s, then you will probably have some fond memories of this hyper orange marsupial. Innovative gameplay and a crushing difficulty spike kept us coming back to these games when they were released on the original PlayStation.
Fast forward to 2017 and Crash has made a come back in the form of the N. Sane Trilogy. The collection features remastered from the ground up versions of the original 3 Crash Bandicoot titles in beautiful 4K. This includes Crash Bandicoot, Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back and Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped.
But be warned, they are still just as hard. It might be worth investing in a backup controller if you are prone to rage quitting.
Crash Bandicoot: N. Sane Trilogy is available now on PlayStation 4 and will be available for Xbox One and Nintendo Switch from 10th July 2018.
When it comes to classic arcade fighting games, there are none more iconic than the legendary Street Fighter series.
Hearing the name Street Fighter probably lights a spark in the competitive side of you and all of the combos start coming back. The first game in the series came out way back in the summer of 1987 and soon became a staple in the one on one fighting game genre.
Fans of the original games will shortly be able to relive the magic all over again with the release of the Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection. This collection features 12 of the legendary games from back in the day and we personally can’t wait to play. Who’s up for a fight?
Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection will be available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch from 29th May 2018.
Keeping up with the competitive theme, we’re almost certain that friendships have been broken over what is arguably the best kart racer of all time, Mario Kart.
After establishing himself as Nintendo’s signature player, everyone’s favourite plumber made his way into the racing world and burst on to the scene with the original Super Mario Kart on the SNES in 1992.
The game features a variety of characters from the Mario franchise, all with different stats and vehicles and multiple different single and multiplayer modes. Since it’s initial release in the early 90s, we’ve seen Mario and friends racing their way through a wide range of consoles such as the Nintendo 64, Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS and more recently the Nintendo Switch.
The iconic racing series is now at it’s 8th instalment, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and is still certain to test even the more stable of friendships. Up for a race?
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is available now on Nintendo Switch.
While Mario may have been Nintendo’s first main player, the Pokémon franchise would soon achieve global dominance and establish itself as a gaming staple.
Spanning over a multitude of media including TV shows, feature films, manga and most recently iOS Games, the games are among the most fondly remembered aspects of the Pokémon series. The first games in the series, Pokémon Red and Blue were released in 1999 in the UK on the Game Boy system and followed the story of a young boy who sets out on a quest to capture all of the different creatures (known as Pokémon) that occupied the world.
Pokémon soon after completely took over the globe and as you can imagine, spawned a lot of sequels. The gaming franchise is still going strong today with the release of Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon in 2017. They have also remastered a couple of the earlier games, including the much beloved Ruby and Sapphire titles.
Are you ready to catch ‘em all again?
Pokémon Omega Ruby and Pokémon Alpha Sapphire are available now on Nintendo 3DS.
What do you get when you combine the JRPG aspects of Final Fantasy and the lovable characters of Disney? The answer is Kingdom Hearts.
Releasing back in 2002 on the PlayStation 2, Kingdom Hearts follows the story of Sora, a young boy who becomes the chosen wielder of the mysterious “Keyblade” and the journey he embarks on. After being separated from his friends when their world becomes engulfed in darkness, Sora ends up becoming unlikely friends with Donald Duck and Goofy and what follows is a fantastic game that still holds a special place in many hearts.
Since then, the series has spawned multiple sequels across different platforms, and has even recently been remastered for fans on next-gen consoles. This complete collection features Kingdom Hearts 1 & 2, as well as side games Birth By Sleep and Re: Chain of Memories and HD cinematic cutscenes from 358/2 Days and Re: Coded. Wow, that was a mouthful.
Oh, and the long awaited 3rd instalment in the main series is slated for a 2018 release so keep your ears open.
Kingdom Hearts 1.5 + 2.5 HD Remix is available now on PlayStation 4.
If you don’t know who this speedy blue hedgehog is by now, you’ve probably been living under a rock.
Sonic The Hedgehog was the king of the SEGA Mega Drive era and could be found in the majority of households in the early 90s. Being SEGA’s answer to Mario, Sonic The Hedgehog featured fast paced gameplay with a killer soundtrack and a growing difficulty.
Over the years, Sonic has gone through many different versions and has managed to stay relevant, even by today’s standards. If you’re not a fan of the newer games, there is no need to worry as last year we were treated to the fantastic Sonic Mania.
Sonic Mania is a love letter to the originals game and almost acts as a sequel, featuring similar gameplay that will be sure to bring you right back. You will soon also be able to play the original games on modern consoles with the release of the SEGA Mega Drive Collection.
Ready to go back to Green Hill Zone?
Sonic Mania is available now on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One and the SEGA Mega Drive Collection will be released on 29th May 2018.
The Grand Theft Auto series really needs little introduction, but it’s the 7th title Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas that provides us with the best memories.
This very popular open world crime game was released back in 2004 for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox and what a ride it was. Playing as Carl “CJ” Johnson, GTA: San Andreas takes you on a crazy quest filled with insane side missions and a lot of opportunities to create some carnage.
If you played the game solely for the story, you’re probably lying. We have all gone on wild sprees full of police car chases and robbed a bank or two. The game is widely considered one of the franchise’s best and even got a remaster on the PS3 and Xbox 360 in 2015.
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is available now through the PlayStation and Xbox Stores.
After reshaping the platforming landscape with the Spyro the Dragon trilogy, developers Insomniac Games went down a different route with Ratchet and Clank.
Released on the PlayStation 2 back in 2001, the game followed a lombax named Ratchet who along with his recently acquainted partner robot Clank must stop Chairman Drek from destroying the galaxy. One of the most impressive features of the game was the wide variety of different weapons you could conjure at any given time, making sure gameplay never felt repetitive and giving it lots of replay value.
After spawning multiple sequels across different consoles over the years, 2016 saw the release of the Ratchet and Clank Movie, along with a re-imagining of the first game exclusively on PlayStation 4. If you’re a fan of the original game, then you need to play this, even if it’s just for the beautiful visuals alone.
Ratchet and Clank is available now on PlayStation 4.
While there have been multiple entries in the very popular JRPG series Final Fantasy, the one that has stuck with the fans is the 7th title, Final Fantasy VII.
Following the story of ex-SOLDIER Cloud Strife, the game was groundbreaking when it first released on the PlayStation One with its 3D graphics and 50+ hours of gameplay. This fantastic game took you through a gritty but intriguing story, and gave you a plenty of monsters to kill in between.
Fans of the game will also soon be treated to a remastered from the ground up version of the JRPG classic, complete with brand new gameplay, stunning visuals and voice acting. Final Fantasy VII Remake is still in development, so keep your eyes peeled for information regarding its release date.
Final Fantasy VII is available now through the PlayStation Store.
The last entry on our list is the most recent, but it’s hard to deny its impact on the gaming world.
The release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare in 2007 completely changed the landscape of the first person shooting genre and served as the blue print going forward. Featuring a gripping story and a fantastic multiplayer mode, Modern Warfare saw the COD series move on from the World War II setting and focus on current times. This new setting was a breath of fresh air for the series and that reflected in the sales figures.
The game had such a huge fan following that they even released a remastered version of the classic game alongside Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare in late 2016. If you think you’re ready to put your war paint back on, then pick up your controller and join us on the battlefield.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered is available now on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
And that’s our list. Writing this list certainly brought back some very fond memories of playing our favourite games and the tears of happiness and frustration that came along with it. With all of the advances in the gaming industry, sometimes it’s nice to revisit some of the classics.
Be sure to pick up some of these fantastic games at your local GAME store, located here at The Harvey Centre.
Did we miss out your favourite? Let us know!