I’m one of those people that will try and get my friends to fall in love with the same game that I have, regardless of public opinion. There are many games that stole my heart, but never quite caught on in the way that I believe they should have. While one or two might be a cult classic, none of them were really in the limelight for that long. Here are ten of the most underrated video games of all time.
10. Killer Instinct Gold (N64)
Killer Instinct Gold for N64 pushed the boundaries (at the time) with its combination of gore and over-the-top combos. The extra fast-paced combos were awesome and the finishers were totally unique. The best part of the game was Fulgore’s Ultimate combo, in which a missile turret sprouts out of his neck and fires upon the enemy. I mean what’s not to like about that?? While everyone else was playing Mortal Kombat, I was mastering Killer Instinct.
9. Army of Two (Xbox 360)
Army of Two is the most underrated game of next gen consoles. While the single player campaign was your typical third person shooter, the game only really shines when you play it with a friend. It is the ultimate co-op two player game in which you really get the sense that you and your teammate must work together in order to win. The best mode in the game was 2v2 online. However, EA turned the servers off and the mode is no longer available. Players can still play co-op story mode online, though.
8. NFL Street (Xbox)
What’s not to love? Big hits, big plays and big stars. The game was much better than NFL Blitz and kept my brother and I amused for hours. The super over-the-top hard hits created endless possibilities for just a fun arcade NFL experience.
7. War of the Monsters (PS2)
UFOs crash onto earth, and radioactive ooze seeps into the sewer systems to create ultra large mega size super monsters. Players could choose from only ten monsters, but you didn’t need more options than that (what else do you need besides a giganto-sized praying mantis and a super-sized King Kong-esque monster?) The best mode was free-for-all, in which you and 3 other monsters fought all over the map, one of which was a metropolitan city that allowed users to jump onto buildings and run through traffic; true carnage at its best. Play free for all with a friend for absolutely intense battles.
6. The Lion King (Sega Genesis)
Yeah, that’s right-I said the Lion King. While this game was intended for the Disney crowd, the difficulty of the game, even on easy mode, was unlike any other. One of the hardest games ever, excluding the few levels in which players played as Timon or Pumbaa. Hardcore users missed out on this true challenge because of the target audience. If you were one of those hardcore users, I strongly suggest you overlook the fact that it is meant for preteens, and pick it up–I guarantee that after a few hours of gameplay you will understand why it deserved far more respect than it ever got.
5. Toejam & Earl (Sega Genesis)
ToeJam & Earl was just a funny game. To this day, no game has made me laugh out loud as much as TJ&E did. The basic story is that there was an orange alien and red alien who crashed to Earth and are now on a quest to find the remnants of their spaceship. Single player is amusing, but the game really only shines when you and a friend put ToeJam and Earl together in a co-op game. The two aliens together provide hilarious banter and thoroughly entertaining dialogue.
4. Gauntlet Legends (Arcade)
Why didn’t any of my friends want to play Gauntlet Legends at the arcade? Oh…because it would’ve cost them a pocketful of quarters to play all the way through. This was the first game to get me interested in dungeon crawling. Users chose to play as a warrior(melee), archer(ranged), wizard(magic) or valkyrie (tank) and any one of a dozen races, such as a dwarf, ogre, or knight. Gameplay was addictive, and dungeon environments were unique. The game definitely deserved more respect than it got, even if it was one of the more expensive games to play in the arcade.
3. Darkman (NES)
The game was even better than the movie. This is the game that probably got the most play on my NES (next to TMNT). The game was the second side scroller that I picked up as a kid–the first was obviously Mario. In the action adventure game, Darkman had to first take a picture of the level’s boss, then plaster a replica of the boss onto his face, then fight as the boss until actually facing the boss at the end of each level. Confused?? The concept of the game was unique (thanks to the movie) and gameplay was exciting. Although I never got to complete the game as a child, I finally went back for a complete run through a few years ago, and the game did not disappoint.
2. Mark of Kri (Ps2)
The Mark of Kri, in my opinion, was the best game on the Playstation 2. Users played as Rau, a great island warrior whom took a bad deal and paid the consequences for it. He fights to save his sister (whom was said to be the last mark of Kri–a rune that gave great power to its possessor). The environments in this game were artistic and unlike anything gamers had seen at the time. Gameplay was intuitive, as users could use stealth to kill their foes, and use a bird’s eye view(literally) to plan their move into the next area. While I highly recommend this game, I strongly suggest users skip the sequel, which was a very poorly made second attempt.
1. Parasite Eve (PsOne)
Parasite Eve was the best game released on the original Playstation, and many casual gamers skipped over it because it was a Japanese style RPG set in America. The game was a sequel to a Japanese novel, however the game was well-understood without having read the novel. This was the first game to get me interested in role-playing games. Users played as NYPD rookie Aya, whom found herself at a crime scene whilst attending an opera in NYC. Everyone at the opera is blown up, except for Aya and her date. The game’s setting is what kept me interested; players got to roam Manhattan instead of the usual fantasy RPG setting. It also didn’t hurt that Aya was my first video game crush.