Top 20 Games Overall 1997-2007

The Orange Box
You get the award winning Half Life 2, plus the two following episodes that progress the story even further, a new style of gameplay from Portal which one can only imagine where the community will take its abilities, and finally Team Fortress 2, a multiplayer team-oriented experience where the different classes actually matter in the overall gameplaying experience. You?d be hard pressed to have never heard of the Half Life series, but if you haven?t had the chance to play it, treat yourself and get The Orange Box. First person shooter fans will see the quality and time that Valve took in creating each component of this package in the first few hours and will then be able to play for unlimited amounts of hours when dealing with the thousands of fan created games based off of the Source Engine.
World of Warcraft
Taking a well known franchise of strategy games and creating one of the world?s largest, most popular games ever seen like a large task, but Blizzard seemed to do it with ease. Taking what made different MMORPG?s popular and putting it all into one game, with decent enough graphics, good sound, and weeks, upon weeks of gameplay. Think I?m joking, make an account and see how easily it is to break away. Don?t believe me? Why not ask one of the 9 million people who are playing what they think of the game. To put that into perspective, think of a small third world country and then think of the entire county?s population playing WoW. Laugh with me, Blizzard did their homework on what makes people happy. If you?re someone who believes differently, that?s fine, but don?t dismiss others for the fun they have online in this massive MMORPG.
Halo 3
Over the years, the Halo series has definitely grown. From Combat Evolved to now the latest installment in the series which successfully ends the trilogy. With a lengthy, engaging storyline that finishes up most of the story elements from the two previous installments, Halo 3 doesn?t break too much new to the table, but it?s how it?s brought is what gives it such high marks. The online multiplayer component is now better than ever with both large and small maps for players to run and gun through with vehicles or on foot. The single player campaign can now be run through with four people which are a welcome component of any first shooter fan, and the storyline flows through to the end. With enhanced graphics that shine and also stay at an impressive framerate whether on your own or online, many gamers will notice the time of development that was put into the game. Not mention the new Forge component which lets you somewhat change up the maps and also take screenshots and movies of you and your friends. You could easily spend weeks with this game and still be having fun either on your own or with friends.
Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock
The latest installment to the Guitar Hero franchise which features a host of songs, almost all performed by the original band themselves. A list of songs ranging from some great classics such as Black Magic Woman, by Santana, to some newer content by bands like Disturbed and Slipknot, Legends of Rock has a little something for everyone. With a few new additions to the multiplayer aspect of the game, being Battle Mode, and co-op campaign mode, Guitar Hero III is a game that will easily last you till the next installment in this fun series. With online leaderboards, some superb looking graphics, great sounding music, and a funnily animated campaign, Legends of Rock holds its standpoint as one of the most fun party games out there to date.
Wii Sports
Long has it been a tradition to include a game with new consoles, but that simply stopped happening as of late for some reason, mostly due to cost of making the different consoles, but with the Nintendo Wii, you were given Wii Sports, which includes different sports such as tennis, golf, baseball, bowling and others that?ll easily entertain you and friends for hours on end. Something so simple to think of, such as a tennis game where you actually feel like you?re swinging a racket, but it was implemented perfectly with the tennis portion of Wii Sports, and if you ever can pull yourself away from tennis, you have an array of different games to play with friends and family.
Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn
Coming off the huge success of its predecessor, Shadows of Amn takes the adventure even further. With the ability to take your character from the previous game and level them up even further, while gaining worthwhile companions that only add to the overall storyline, Baldur?s Gate II took everything that was great about the RPG genre and made it better. Making the pen and paper gameplay of Dungeons and Dragons come alive on the computer screen, giving the modding community all the tools of the developers, there just weren?t enough hours in the day. With hundreds of modifications being made throughout the next few years after its initial release, players were able to enjoy this game for years to come and even now today. The pre-rendered backgrounds shine even when compared to some of the artistic style of games today.
Legend of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time
One of the largest highlights of the Nintendo 64 and also of the Zelda series, Ocarina of Time took the series into full 3-D and did it spectacularly. With hours of gameplay wrapped around a superb storyline, you?ll be spending half of your time talking about the fun gameplay experience from beginning to end. Keeping the great components of the previous titles, and adding new aspects to the overall gameplay, Zelda fans were more than happy with this latest installment and tend to go back to it from time to time because of the great experience that it gives you.
Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
A game that appeared both on the Gamecube and the Wii, Twilight Princess pushes the Zelda series even further with the Wii console because of the motion controller component that adds a interactive real sense to the game. When drawing your bow back, you draw the controllers back as if you were holding a bow. When swinging your sword, you swing the controller. This level of interaction mixed with a lengthy campaign that is supported by a detailed story makes the latest addition to the series a welcome installment.
Ninja Gaiden: Black
A new installment in an old franchise that easily revitalized the interest that might have been lost. Taking a 2-D side scrolling action game and making it full 3-D can be quiet an undertaking, but Team Ninja seemed to do it quite easily creating one of the most fun, intensive action games on the market, to this date. What might constitute as button-mashing, the amount of different moves and combos that can be pulled off are just stunning, whether you?re playing as a lowly Ninja Dog or a Master Ninja, you?ll be playing through an amazing action game that keeps you on your toes from the get go. With the two hurricane packs already included, Ninja Gaiden: Black adds new content, weapons, and more to the mix to challenge your skills throughout the lengthy campaign.
Super Mario Galaxy
The next greatest Mario game on the Wii System that takes full advantage of the motion sensitive controllers is something that long time fans can be happy with. Searching for different stars, like in previous Mario games, you'll find yourself just searching and having fun while doing so because of how interactive the control system is. The developers themselves had to have quite a bit of fun when dealing with the creative motion style of the controllers and one can only imagine where the next Mario will take us.
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
Say what you will about the Grand Theft Auto series, but Rockstar games definitely know they?re doing when creating new games. Given more advertisement by the famous ?coffee mod,? San Andreas yet again gave the player the ability to do almost anything in a huge world that was free of loading points. Taking everything that was great about the previous two games in the series, San Andreas adds more quests consisting of a large variety, different from just the regular ?mailman? quests that have plagued most games in this same genre. If you?re not offended by strong language or any sort of racism and want a game that will fill up your time for quite awhile, giving you the ability to live an alternate life in a huge world, then Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is a good choice for you. Even though it may not seem like Rockstar Games are not taking a lot of initiative with the Grand Theft Auto series, San Andreas proves yet again that you can make a sequel that is above and beyond what the previous installments were.
Castlevania: The Symphony of the Night
Keeping the side scrolling action that made the Castlevania series so popular, Symphony of the Night adds a role-playing component that really adds quite a bit to the overall fun and gameplay. With a new storyline taking you into the role of Alucard, Dracula?s son, this newest installment has you going throughout your father?s castle turning each room upside down, literally, to finally confront the one?s who has been troubling everyone. You?ll come across memorable characters such as Richter and the Grim Reaper as you make your through Dracula?s huge castle collecting different items and leveling up your character. Overall, it?s a very memorable experience from beginning to end and really carries on the fun side scrolling experience that the Castlevania series instilled upon us many years ago.
Resident Evil 4
Changing some of the gameplay mechanics to a more over the shoulder adventure really paid off for this latest installment in the series. Drawn across a longer plotline that had you going through hours of great, horror-styled gameplay, Resident Evil 4 took all the elements of a good action shooter and combined them to create a great game overall. With some decent looking graphics, especially from a Gamecube point of view, Resident Evil 4 is just one of the titles that you shouldn?t overlook for the Gamecube, not only because of the great graphics, but for the sound, storyline, and overall control and gameplay components.
God of War II
Sequel to a superb game. God of Wars II once again has Kratos fighting for his life against every mythological beast known. With excellent visuals, especially coming from a dated system, and a great soundtrack that's always keeping your adrenaline going throughout the entire campaign from beginning to end, the PS2 doesn't seem to be showing its age at all in the latest installment in this amazing series. With huge boss battles, and more puzzles throughout the entire gameplay experience, anyone who played the first should absolutely own this, better yet, anyone who owns a PS2 should own this. One can only wonder what they'll do with the next installment on the power of the PS3.
Rock Band
From the makers of Guitar Hero comes another immensely fun party game, but more interactive. Consisting of a drumset, microphone, and of course guitar, you can actually create your own band with a group of friends to play for hours on end. With a list of decent tracks to play through, along with constant downloadable content, to play through from some great bands, the lifespan of this game is pretty much as long as you can keep your friends together. Covering all of the aspects of the band, including vocals, Rock Band is simply entertaining in all aspects. If you have the money, and the friends, run out and grab this game because it will definitely last you.
Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones
A combination of the previous two installments in the series, taking the great combat style from Warrior Within, and the great environmental puzzles from The Sands of Time, this game can do nothing but please fans of the trilogy. Along with a decent storyline that will keep the player interested throughout the entire game, PoP: T2T ends the trilogy with a good note, having most of the questions from the previous games answered. Adding a new ?quick kill? feature as an addition to the already great combat system, the developers really took some time to make everything in the combat flow from one attack to the next. Even with putting out a new installment every year, Ubisoft has definitely put their time into presenting the player with a great gameplay experience that will please most, if not all Prince of Persia fans.
Civilization IV
Using an enhanced version of the same graphics engine that was used to Sid Meier?s Pirates!, Civilization IV takes all the great features of the previous installments, plus fixed almost all the problems and gave their fan community an all around great game. Civ games were never really known for their intense graphics, only their in-depth gameplay and Civilization IV definitely delivers. With using the Pirates! Engine, Firaxis give the Civ series a 3D enhancement with many different colors that just feels right as you decide to either nuke your opponents or deal with them peacefully. With so many ways to win each game, and the great multiplayer, Civilization IV is an easy recommendation to the list.
Metroid Prime
Metroid?s first step into full 3-D, Metroid Prime took a fun engaging side-scroller and turned it into a huge success on the Gamecube. With a decent enough storyline that follows you as you go throughout an entire world with different environments, locales, and enemies as you try and track down the space pirates. Taking what was great about thee previous games and instilling them perfectly into this newest installment, the developers took a chance with this title and made all the right choices.
Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos
Having to follow up one of the most played real-time strategy games of its time, not to mention Blizzard?s major success of Starcraft and its expansion, Reign of Chaos had a lot to prove and it does it from the beginning intro movie. Having some great experience in the genre already, Blizzard certainly doesn?t let their fans down with a great storyline that flows from level to level and some decent graphics to portray the world that Blizzard created years ago. Lowering the population limit, making the gameplay including multiplayer faster, and a host of other changes, created a whole new niche for fans of the genre with this new installment. One can only imagine where Blizzard might take the franchise after the whole World of Warcraft fiasco has taken its turn.
Who could have ever guessed back in 1999