Gamer’s nowadays have thousands of games to entertain themselves with.  The younger generation of gamers, meaning the ones that are in middle and high school right now, have missed out on the best generation of gaming to date.  They will never understand the struggle we had with wired controllers, blowing on the cartridge and changing the batteries in our handhelds.  Most are worried about the hottest iPhone or Android app to entertain themselves in class.

Because of this, I have put together a list of 5 games that I believe every gamer should play and beat at some point in their life.  Granted, I know their are probably a hundred games that could make an argument to be on this list, but if you play these games then you will be hooked on each franchise and play their sequels.  For instance, once a gamer plays the Original Halo, of course they will play Halo 3!

These are in no particular order, enjoy!

1) Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (Nintendo 64)

For many people of my generation, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time was the first Legend of Zelda game they played.  This game was a landmark for the video game industry because it raised the bar for everyone.  This was the first time we saw an open world with so much detail.  Also, the storyline is still one of the greatest to ever be featured in a game.  This game requires heavy thinking and linking events together to complete the game.  Even games today lack in this category.  Some games today push you down a single path, you shoot a few aliens, then boom, the mission ends.  In Ocarina of Time, you have to strategically attack each dungeon.  Sometimes you can get lost in the depth of this game and spend hours just messing around.  Buy this game.

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2) Halo: Combat Evolved (Original Xbox)

Halo: Combat Evolved is another game that was revolutionary.  This game set the standard for first-person shooters for years to come.  The gameplay is truly unmatched and the storyline set up and amazing trilogy.  This is THE standard when it comes to first-person shooters.  Also, if you are going to be purchasing Halo: 5, you need to beat this game and the rest of the trilogy to get a basis of the Halo Universe.  The series is incredibly vast and you should study up 0n the history of the franchise.

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3) Super Mario 64 (Nintendo 64)

Super Mario 64 is a CLASSIC!  This is the first 3D Mario game that came about and really changed Nintendo for the better.  This game was revolutionary in that in really brought the 360 degree camera to life.  This game also helped with the development of Ocarina of Time.  Each course or painting you jump through is like a mini open-world environment where the player is free to explore as they please.  The goal of this game is to collect stars throughout the castle to gain access to fight Bowser, saving Princess Peach.  And in typical Mario fashion, you have to defeat Bowser multiple times to save Peach.  If you’re looking for a challenging classic game that will not disappoint, this game is for you!

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4) Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (PS2/Xbox)

GTA: San Andreas is a third-person, open-world game where you can pretty much do anything you want.  You can personalize your character with clothes, tattoos, and facial features.  With the incorporation of gangs into this installment of Grand Theft Auto, the player has the unique opportunity to be in a firefight whenever they please.  Current GTA games are pretty much just go kill this super rich guy and then run from the police.  San Andreas is more like, go storm this building with 50 gang members, by yourself, and hope you can make it out alive.  Or hey look a casino run by a gang, lets walk in with a rocket launcher and hope not to be seen!  Things to definitely take advantage of in this game are Gang Wars, Car Modifications, the Side Missions, and simply exploring the vast open-world.

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5) Pokemon Yellow, Red, & Blue (Gameboy Color)

Charmander, Squirtle, or Bulbasaur. This was the toughest decision my generation of gamers had to make. They all had so many positives! If you have not played an Original Pokemon game, are you even a gamer? These are probably the best handheld games EVER made! From collecting all eight Gym Badges, to defeating the Elite 4, to completing your Pokedex, the satisfaction you will receive from this game is unmatched! Also, I would highly recommend streaming the first season of the T.V. Pokemon Series as you play these games! It makes playing the games even more magical! Gotta Catch ‘Em All!!!

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TCGLong