Derek J. Hernandez

[NCB POP] G4’s Top 100 Video Games of All-Time Recap

As soon as “Pong” was announced as the 100th best game of all-time and was immediately followed by “Words With Friends” at #99 I knew I was in store for a head-scratching 5-episode trip down digital memory lane.

The countdown began with minimal introduction and no criteria or methodology of how the list was compiled at all. There was no mention of a panel, no mention of if impact of a game outweighed things like gameplay or replay value. We as viewers had to take the list as it was presented.  And if you watched VH1 the last handful of years you were very familiar with the format.

This is how Olivia Munn gets her 8-bit gaming on.

Which brings me to the presenters. If you told me those in charge of gathering interviewees for the show went on a Craigslist for Celebrities and posted a Help Wanted ad for the show I’d actually believe you. We get the pleasure of hearing what Oklahoma City Thunder benchwarmers Royal Ivey and Reggie Jackson think about “Civilization II“. We also get a few New York Met players I’ve never heard of (other than David Wright and Johan Santana can you name another player?) discuss how “Excitebike” changed their lives. I guess since all these guys ride the pine and have plenty of time to hit the sticks their commentary could be considered “expert” opinion. While we all could give these athletes with ample free time a pass, what the hell was G4 thinking having Soulja Boy as part of the D-List ensemble?

Maybe G4 thought his expert analysis of “Braid” was something he could apply to 99 other games. Check out the following video for Soulja Boy’s eloquent discussion of Braid’s time-reversal gameplay:

Wow.To make matters worse, Mr. Superman-That-Ho himself provides his recollection of when games like Ms. Pac-Man debuted. That’d be fine if he was actually alive back in 1982. He’s only 21.

Enough about the presentation of the show. Let’s get to the list of G4’s Top 100 Video Games of All-Time. The top 20 is indented for your convenience.

100. Pong
99. Words With Friends
98. Pitfall
97. NBA 2K11
96. Guitar Hero II
95. Burger Time
94. Braid
93. Star Wars: Tie Fighter
92. Galaga
91. The Sims
90. Baldur’s Gate II
89. Left 4 Dead
88. Double Dribble
87. Mass Effect 2
86. Out Run
85. Silent Hill 2
84. Wii Sports
83. Ninja Gaiden
82. Super Smash Bros. Melee
81. Resident Evil
80. Gears Of War 3
79. PsychoNauts
78. Spy Hunter
77. Excitebike
76. Blades Of Steel
75. Fallout 3
74. Starfox 64
73. Mega Man II
72. Mortal Kombat
71. Wing Commander II
70. Star Wars
69. Double Dragon
68. Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time
67. Minecraft
66. Assassin’s Creed II
65. Unreal Tournament
64. NBA Jam
63. Wolfenstein 3D
62. Civilization II
61. God Of War III
60. Contra
59. Maniac Mansion II: Day of the Tenacle
58. Ultimata Online
57. Pokemon Red/Blue
56. Super Street Fighter IV
55. Kingdom Hearts
54. Gauntlet
53. Deus Ex
52. Rock Band 3
51. Ratchet & Clank Going Commando
50. Sonic The Hedgehog
49. Angry Birds
48. Tecmo Bowl
47. Must
46. Red Dead Redemption
45. Metal Gear Solid
44. Grand Theft Auto IV
43. Quake III: Arena
42. Ghosts ‘N Goblins
41. Super Mario 64
40. Space Invaders
39. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater
38. Super Metroid
37. Halo
36. Batman: Arkham City
35. Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
34. Counter Strike
33. Final Fantasy VII
32. Mike Tyson’s Punch Out
31. Skyrim
30. Super Street Fighter II Turbo
29. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
28. Super Mario Kart
27. Chrono Trigger
26. Ico
25. Grand Theft Auto III
24. Madden 2005
23. Halo 3
22. Panzer Dragoon Saga
21. Resident Evil IV

  • #20 – COD: Modern Warfare
  • #19 – Diablo II
  • #18 – Ms. Pac-Man
  • #17 – Starcraft
  • #16 – Half-Life
  • #15 – Donkey Kong
  • #14 – Uncharted 2
  • #13 – Portal
  • #12 – Doom II
  • #11 – Zelda OOT
  • #10 – World Of Warcraft
  • #9 – Shadow Of The Colossus
  • #8 – Goldeneye
  • #7 – Super Mario Bros 3
  • #6 – Legend of Zelda
  • #5 – Tetris
  • #4 – Asteroids
  • #3 – BioShock
  • #2 – Link To The Past
  • #1 – Super Mario Bros.

Super Mario Bros. for the NES at #1 shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. It basically introduced console gaming to the world and kicked off the most successful and recognizable video game franchise ever. With no criteria information provided it’s hard to argue with the list but I felt Pong, Starfox 64, Quake III, Super Mario 64, Final Fantasy VII, and Chrono Trigger were ranked too low and BioShock was rated way too high. If you’re going to put Asteroids that high why do you put Pong that low? Again, since no methodology was provided arguing with the list is pretty much futile.

In terms of snubs, where is Super Mario World, Earthbound, and Sim City?

It’s unfortunate Adam Sessler no longer works for G4 as I would have loved his take on the list. I would have also liked to have seen Kevin Pereira part of the show. His nerdgasm over explaining the Diablo series’ impact on his life would have been must-see TV and you know he would have taken a few witty jabs at Soulja Boy as well.

What are your thoughts on the list? We’d love see everyone’s personal top 10 so please post a comment in our comments section and let the debate begin!

BONUS: We don’t want the “cake to be a lie” so as a reward for getting through this post here’s an unnecessary (very necessary?) pic of G4’s Sara Underwood.




  1. Ben Z

    June 18, 2012 at 8:57 am

    Super Mario World I don’t see as a snub. If you look at the list, you can tell they were trying very hard to not just do the same franchises over and over, but only pick the games that were “game changers.” Mario 1, Mario 3 and Mario 64 were all huge. Super Mario World, while awesome, was not a huge gamechanger. It took Mario 3 and enhanced it. I will give you Earthbound, but Civ 2 is like Sim City on steroids. I would say Earthbound in, Red Dead Redemption (while great, not a game changer) or GTA 4 (again, not a game changer, IMO) out. Also, Tecmo Super Bowl should be in there over Tecmo Bowl. Tecmo Bowl had a handful of teams (12 maybe?) and 4 plays to choose from. Tecmo Super Bowl (which is still competitively played to this day and considered one of if not the greatest sports video game of all time) had the entire NFL and 8 plays to pick from. Tecmo Bowl over Tecmo Super Bowl has to be a joke.

  2. Don

    June 22, 2012 at 6:26 pm

    Daniel Murphy from the Mets is their starting second basemen and nearly a career. 300 hitter. Not riding the pine much.

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