this post was submitted on 07 May 2024
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Era can be defined as a console generation, a decade, one specific year, whatever you want. I’d encourage you to give a list of your favourite games from the generation of choice and why it was the best to you. Nostalgia is a totally viable reason too.

I’ll go first. For me, the 360 era is my GOAT. As someone in their 20s, I grew up with the 360 so nostalgia is definitely a big factor. But on top of that, I still feel like the games during that time were some of the best we’ve had. 2011 alone was a fantastic year, with Dark Souls, Skyrim, Portal 2 and many more great games. I was going to list out my favourite games from 2005-2013 but I love so many it would be far too long of a post.

I’d love to hear some of you talk about your favourite time period of games too, whether it’s agreeing with my choice or giving different opinions

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[–] [email protected] 31 points 2 months ago (2 children)

LAN parties. I remember the first time I could connect two PC together. It was Doom, with a serial-to-serial cable. We were two players on the same fucking map. It was awesome!

Then coax cable networks with friends. We used to have two or three different networks during a LAN party since you could not disconnect the coax cable to add a player without stopping the current games. The players arrived later would plug a new network just for them, and launch a game waiting the first players to finish theirs.

[–] the_ramzay 5 points 2 months ago

Yep, we made LAN between three 5 floor houses and we have eventually 10 people in it. That was AWESOME! We are have played: Warcraft 3, cs1.6, quake 3 arena, C&C Generals/Red Alert, Diablo 2, Titan Quest, Disciples II, Heroes of might and Magic III, and freaking World of Warcraft on our private server!

[–] cod 4 points 2 months ago

Oh man that must’ve been a great time. Very jealous you got to experience that being brand new!

[–] [email protected] 30 points 2 months ago (2 children)

The Greatest Era of gaming was when I was between 12 and 22. And this is true for everyone no matter what their age is now. Between 12 and 22 I had enough time and energy to game all night and still go to school and none of life’s problems were stopping me

[–] [email protected] 3 points 2 months ago

this has gotta be the correct answer

[–] cod 3 points 2 months ago

You know what, that’s a great answer. I think you probably hit the nail on the head

[–] [email protected] 24 points 2 months ago (1 children)

The present. I can use emulation to play all my old favorites, often for free, and there's never been such a rich plethora of indie and studio games available.

[–] cod 7 points 2 months ago (3 children)

Very logical answer. What are some of your old favourites you like to emulate?

[–] [email protected] 13 points 2 months ago (2 children)

NES: River City Ransom, Crystalis, Zelda ][

SNES: Super Mario World, Chrono Trigger, Link to the Past

GB: Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, Minish Cap, Tetris

DOS: The Quest for Glory series, ZZT

[–] [email protected] 3 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago) (2 children)

If you haven't played Terranigma, you should do that. It's on the level of Chrono Trigger in how good it is.

It was never released in North America, so get the PAL ROM along with the NTSC (60Hz) patch from RHDN

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[–] [email protected] 20 points 2 months ago (6 children)

Around the turn of the millennium. Games were designed for offline use and had way more immersive campaigns, were shipped by and large ready and bug-free, and so were add-on campaigns.

And since graphics were not as refined as they are now, additional efforts were placed on gameplay.

My top list (by release year):

  • Diablo II (1996)
  • Dungeon Keeper (1997)
  • Half-Life (1998)
  • Thief: The Dark Project (1998)
  • Thief 2 (1999)
  • Dungeon Keeper 2 (1999)
  • Heroes of Might & Magic 3 (1999)
  • Gothic II (2002)

Never had a console and don't get along with controllers whatsoever, so those are all referring to the PC versions.

[–] [email protected] 3 points 2 months ago (1 children)

Aw man that's a good list!

[–] [email protected] 3 points 2 months ago

I've recently replayed Thief and Thief 2, they still hold up well!

Tried Gothic II, and unfortunately the controls feel very clunky today. Or maybe it's just me. But somehow third person view doesn't really work for me anymore.

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[–] [email protected] 19 points 2 months ago (2 children)

The era of SCUMM. Point and click adventures were awesome. Day of the Tentacle, Full Throttle, Leisure Suit Larry, Quest for Glory series, Indiana Jones and the fate of Atlantis.

[–] lunarul 8 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago) (4 children)

How is Monkey Island missing from the list? Those games were the peak of SCUMM.

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[–] [email protected] 3 points 2 months ago

Hell yea, Indy Atlantis is absolute peak... then again so is most of lucasarts point&click adventure games.

Man I wish the teased sequel for atlantis was actually made :/

[–] [email protected] 17 points 2 months ago (1 children)

The 90s era of gaming, extending to the early 2000s. SNES, Genesis, PC Engine, N64, PS1, PS2, GameCube.

It was the era before the Internet and video gaming became extremely linked. The sheer number of classics that still hold up today, even compared to modern games, are very numerous.

[–] cod 7 points 2 months ago (2 children)

There’s lots of late 90’s-early 2000’s answers here. You’re definitely not alone in that thought

[–] lunarul 6 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago) (6 children)

Add one more here. Some of the greatest games came out in that period.

I made before a list of the top 10 games that impacted me the most and a large part are from that period. In no particular order:

  • Worms (particularly Worms World Party)
  • The Settlers II
  • Master of Orion II
  • Heroes of Might and Magic (particularly the first 3)
  • Phantasmagoria
  • WWF WrestleMania
  • Little Big Adventure
  • Monkey Island (especially 1-3)
  • Dizzy (all games in the series)
  • Jet Set Willy
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[–] [email protected] 3 points 2 months ago (2 children)

I'm guessing a lot of people grew up in the late 90s to early 2000s, so it's largely nostalgia.

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[–] CleoTheWizard 15 points 2 months ago (4 children)

I loved the PS2 era of gaming a lot. This may be a controversial take, but the PS2 era did not last long enough.

Everything about the aesthetics of the games that the PS2 produced were excellent. In my opinion, this is the point when low fidelity and high quality assets overlapped just enough to make games more comprehensible to their players. That enabled a lot of innovation that the PS3/360 era handled entirely differently. Forget an era, the PS2 is the last part of an entire age of gaming that delineates what I’m referring to.

The PS2 was a huge turning point in what games were and could be in 3D. Prior to this, many games were abstract and the characters were a lump of polygons. With the PS2, this began to change. So we began to get games that our minds had to do a lot of interpreting but could see reality through. Nowadays, I’d argue that your mind does less interpreting and so the resulting picture has glaring inaccuracies.

It also helped that ps2 was primarily played on CRTs or at least plasma which helped the picture look better in plenty of scenes than a PS3. Not to mention the color palette of games after the PS2 turned to muck.

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[–] [email protected] 12 points 2 months ago (1 children)

For PC I'd say 1999-2010 was absolutely amazing time to be a gamer. PC parts were dirt cheap, you could overclock the hell out of your hardware, and micro-transactions and pay-to-win didn't exist.

[–] cod 6 points 2 months ago

Micro-transactions and pay-to-win are reason enough, those are some of the worst things to come to video games

[–] [email protected] 9 points 2 months ago

I think the handheld era is my favorite, it basically ended with the 3DS, but it is the DS which I really can't put down, I am playing for the first time Chrono Trigger on it, and it is my Jump Ultimate Stars machine (Wimmfi), also have some other bangers as well, but I'll bore you if I citate them all.

But hey, don't get me wrong, the current handheld era is good too, we have the Switch, The Steam Deck and a plethora of good quality Chinese handhelds.

[–] B0NK3RS 9 points 2 months ago (3 children)

Probably the period of '95 thought to '05. Mostly because they were the days of local multiplayer with friends and also the jump in technology made things even more interesting.

Combined we had all the 4 player games on the N64. So Goldeneye, SSB, F-Zero, Mario Kart, Snowboard Kids, DK Racing, Perfect Dark, WCW vs NWO and more.

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[–] Nostalgia 8 points 2 months ago (1 children)

The Commodore Amiga in its prime was one of the coolest times to be a teenaged gamer. Though NES was a hell of a thing at its time too.

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[–] [email protected] 7 points 2 months ago

Honestly, I really liked Zork. (I was the right age when it came out.). Never been as captivated by a game. More in the imagination than in the graphics.

I'll put Civilization V (and sometimes IV) in second place. Homeworld was great too.

[–] PP_BOY_ 6 points 2 months ago (1 children)

2004-2014. That captures the great tail end of the sixth generation of consoles and the golden days of the seventh

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[–] [email protected] 6 points 2 months ago (1 children)

I'll break from the mould and say early 80s to early 90s, where we got:

  • Atari
  • Commodore 64
  • NES
  • DOS & Windows
  • Apple II (esp. Oregon Trail)
  • iconic

That era really defined what video games are, and built the framework for how we talk about games today.

[–] [email protected] 3 points 2 months ago

I miss the Amiga 500 in that list. ;)

[–] Quazatron 6 points 2 months ago (3 children)

My first machine was a ZX Spectrum.

I love the 8 bit games I grew up with but I'm not stuck in that timeframe. I appreciate that I can still play all my old games and the new ones.

I just wish I had more time to enjoy them.

Excluding the 8 bit games, the games where I spent more time are: Doom, Half-life, Portal, Bioshock Infinite, Skyrim.

If I had to choose one, it would be Doom. Such a simple game, so much brainless fun, so many great mods.

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[–] [email protected] 6 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago) (2 children)

Okay, below the "=" is my previous answer but I admit it was against the spirit of the post so let me think. I choose the years from the launch of EverQuest to Shadows of Luclin. I consider EverQuest to be the greatest MMO ever made. So my answer is 1999-2002.

To this day I STILL play servers locked at the 2002 version of EverQuest. It's very populated. That should tell you something.

=====================================

Got my first console in 89. First PC in 99.

My choice is current year, because it encompasses every year before and the amount of emulator projects is greater than it's ever been.

I can make any system from history with a Saturday of effort.

Plus all the indie games that capture the retro feel. Idk, gaming is in a great spot if you don't bother with big studios.

Is that a lame answer? O well, it's sincere.

[–] Essence_of_Meh 4 points 2 months ago (2 children)

Lame? Not really. Cheating? Maybe a little bit but yeah, if we were to go by access to the history of gaming then "current year" always wins.

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[–] cod 3 points 2 months ago (6 children)

I knew I’d get one saying that but honestly it’s the most logical choice and I respect it. I guess in a way that’s probably everyone’s choice

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[–] [email protected] 5 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago) (2 children)

'96 to 2014 or so fucking ruled.

Though it's much more heavily concentrated in the 1997-2003 range.

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[–] [email protected] 5 points 2 months ago

for me there was a peak in the late 90s. Ocarina of Time and Half Life in 1998 alone.

[–] [email protected] 5 points 2 months ago (1 children)

It's an overlap between the back end of the fourth gen (aka 16-bit) era for consoles and then a full pivot to PC gaming in the years after. I really didn't like the move to early 3D on consoles with their abysmal framerates and load times. I felt then (and still think today) it was a generation too early.

Marking the starting point is easy: 1994. An insane year for the SNES, Donkey Kong Country, Final Fantasy VI, Mega Man X, and Super Metroid all came out in North America that year. That run continued on the SNES until Yoshi's Island in 1996. I did pick up a PlayStation but I wasn't thrilled with it. There are some personal favorites from this time, too, but they still had the sprite art I was desperately missing: games like Final Fantasy Tactics, Suikoden, Symphony of the Night, Xenogears.

I'd been a PC gamer for a while, but I started moving more towards the platform with Blizzard's ascendancy with Warcraft II in 1995 and Diablo in 1996. I'd finally get a dedicated GPU in 1998, and what a year for it: Half-Life, Thief: The Dark Project, Unreal, Tribes, Freespace. The less-demanding games of the year were no slouches either: Starcraft, Baldur's Gate, Fallout 2. With a similarly impressive console lineup, it's no surprise many consider 1998 the best year ever for video games.

The endpoint is harder to pin down. Maybe the death of the space sim genre with Freespace 2 in late 1999, or Blizzard's last landmark game before the MMO era, Diablo II in mid-2000. At the very latest, a new era for me definitely began with the release of the Game Boy Advance in 2001, where I shifted mostly to PC + handheld platforms, where I'm still at today.

[–] cod 3 points 2 months ago

That was a great read. As someone born within that timeframe I didn’t really live through it much, so I don’t have much experience with it, but I like to get a glimpse at what it was like through comments like yours!

[–] toxicbubble 5 points 2 months ago (1 children)

'95-'05 with the advent of 3d gaming

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[–] [email protected] 5 points 2 months ago (1 children)

I think most eras were decent. I'm especially keen on everything post 8-bit, but pre-"everything is a monetized DLC; fuck you pay me" era.

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[–] SatansMaggotyCumFart 4 points 2 months ago (1 children)

I've been working my way through Atari 2600 games right now, they have over 500 to choose from!

[–] cod 4 points 2 months ago

There’s some great games for that. My friend’s dad had one we used to play on as kids, and always had a great time. Got any favourite games?

[–] Essence_of_Meh 4 points 2 months ago (5 children)

Probably fifth and sixth gens (PSX-PS2 era), for three reasons:

  • graphics - there's something about art styles used at the time that aged surprisingly well and is just pleasant to look at, even compared to later games.
  • variety - both gens were filled with mid budget titles trying out new, often weird ideas that didn't always work but can be really interesting even to this day (as long as you can overcome jank usually present there).
  • (least important point) there's a lower chance I'll find games from this era to be too old-school for me. I have a high tolerance to old game design but I'm not immune to it. Sometimes there is such thing as "too old" and that's alright.
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[–] [email protected] 3 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

Early-mid 90s.

The latter years of the NES, the entirety of the 16-bit console era (SNES/Megadrive ["Genesis"]), the golden age of PC adventure games & the dawn of multimedia (CD-ROM based games & talkies).

Just before the release of Doom, where FPS took over; and the PSX/N64, where (bad) 3D was teh hotness; is where it's at for me – likely why I love my MiSTer FPGA so much.

[–] CatZoomies 3 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago) (1 children)

My favorite is the 3DS Era. I was a young adult then, and sure I could say I loved 16 bit, 64 bit eras because I was younger and had much more time to play video games. But I had so much fun with my 3DS.

Specifically - 3-D integration into certain video games introduced a new way to play them, and I enjoyed the new layer in puzzles for games like Mario 3D Land and especially A Link Between Worlds.

But what I miss the most about 3DS was StreetPass. How fun it was taking my 3DS everywhere and getting visitors in both my games plus in StreetPass Plaza! I loved the hell out of those mini games and would drive all over the place to different hotspots and collect visitors! Carrying it work and making friends over StreetPass was also such a nice bonus.

Gaming was so much fun in this era and on this console. Probably still my favorite console due to all these memories tied up with it. I could get in so many gaming sessions, and if I needed to handle something quickly I could just fold it shut and go about my day. The OG suspend lol.

P.S - Street Pass is of course officially dead along with many other features of the 3DS era. However, there are archival projects so you can at least get visitors to your console. It requires custom firmware, but look into StreetPass 2 for more details.

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