Total Nerd The Best Classic Video Games  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
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List Rules Video games released between 1960 to 2000.

Top classic video games from the early years of gaming. This list contains the best games released on any system (arcade, home consoles, portable devices) from the 1960s through the year 2000 (which for this list would be considered the start of the "modern era" of gaming.) This includes all the essential games from the era of the arcade, as well as the original 8-bit consoles and their 16-bit follow-ups.

Many of the retro games on this list have remained extremely popular to this present day, and are often still played by passionate fans on preserved consoles or on computers via emulator software. Some of these games are part of ongoing franchises that have remained vital to this day, such as the classic "Mario Bros." games, "Legend of Zelda" titles and fighting games like "Mortal Kombat."

Experimental video games have been around since the 1950s, but it was two game breakthroughs in the early 1970s that really brought games more mainstream attention. "Spacewar!," released in 1961, became popular enough to generate about 1500 individual arcade machines, but was so complicated to learn that it failed to really develop mass appeal. The same was not true of 1972's "Pong," from the same creators, that recreated table tennis for arcades and eventually sold nearly 20,000 machines. By the late 1970s, video game consoles for the home were becoming more commonplace, with both the Intellivision and ColecoVision competing in toy stores and introducing many of the titles we're still familiar with today (including the original "Donkey Kong" and "Space Invaders.")

1978 is traditionally considered the start of the Golden Age of video games, particularly in terms of arcade games, with the introduction of numerous beloved retro titles (including "Frogger" and "Galaxian.") Finally, in 1985, Nintendo introduced the first Nintendo Entertainment System to stores, bundled with the game "Super Mario Bros.," a landmark release in console history.
list ordered by

1
2,214 1,390
Pac-Man is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
1980

2
2,933 1,247
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina o... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

3
3,064 489
Super Mario Bros. is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

4
2,174 1,242
Mario Bros. is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

5
1,862 1,014
Donkey Kong is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

6
2,582 478
Super Mario Bros. 3 is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

7
1,943 698
Super Mario Kart is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

8
1,468 1,126
Tetris: The Soviet Mind Game is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

9
1,647 842
Doom is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
1993

10
1,890 521
The Legend of Zelda is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
midnightq2 added

11
1,746 780
Mortal Kombat is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

12
1,877 452
Super Mario World is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
midnightq2 added 1990

13
1,734 501
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to... is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

14
1,394 792
Space Invaders is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

15
1,248 805
Galaga is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
1981

16
1,307 739
Contra is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
1987

17
1,341 649
Super Smash Bros. is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

18
1,325 392
Sonic the Hedgehog is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
JoshuaMonson added 1991

19
1,151 504
Donkey Kong Country is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

20
930 849
Paperboy is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
1984

21
924 897
Dig Dug is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
1982

22
799 736
Gauntlet is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
1987

23
1,288 703
Pokémon Red and Blue is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

24
752 348
Metroid is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
1986

25
1,105 631
Street Fighter is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

26
817 709
Ms. Pac-Man is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

27
895 633
NBA Jam is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
1993

28
996 347
Tetris is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
1985

29
983 596
Double Dragon is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

30
590 420
SimCity is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
joakim742 added 1989

31
901 522
Metal Gear Solid is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

32
1,024 284
Mario Kart 64 is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

33
645 476
Final Fantasy VI is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
midnightq2 added 1994

34
554 695
Pole Position is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

35
662 545
Asteroids is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
1979

36
860 376
Final Fantasy VII is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

37
821 565
Grand Theft Auto is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

38
1,137 316
GoldenEye 007 is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

39
602 577
Mario Party is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

40
511 301
The Legend of Zelda: Link's Aw... is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

41
742 268
Duck Hunt is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
Tricia Psarreas-Murray added 1984

42
336 303
Prince of Persia is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
The COCK added 1989

43
551 486
Final Fantasy I-II is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

44
533 381
SimCity 2000 is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
joakim742 added 1993

45
484 622
Defender is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
1980

46
1,012 327
Super Mario 64 is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

47
729 386
Resident Evil is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
midnightq2 added 1996

48
603 554
Pitfall! is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
1982

49
657 315
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Classic Video Games

50
307 275
Lemmings is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Classic Video Games
Stargoose added 1991