The following list is only my personal top 10 and does not reflect any of the other members of MONG. I was only between the ages of 6 and 10 when I played most of these games and didn’t play much of the PlayStation 1 after that, so if there is a game that you feel belongs on here and I didn’t include it, it is probably because I was too young and/or it just didn’t interest me.
This is a survival horror video game released in 1998 by developer Capcom. The game takes place two months after the events of the first Resident Evil. Raccoon City is overrun by its own citizens who are now zombies that were transformed by the T-virus, a biological weapon. The story follows Leon Kennedy and Claire Redfield as they try to escape the city. Resident Evil 2 is one of the strongest games in the series, and has many elements that the series would do well to return to. This was a gem on PlayStation 1 and is a must play for horror game fans.
This was one of those games I loved as a kid, but I was never able to beat it. Looking back on it, I wish I had. Soul Reaver is an action-adventure game developed by Crystal Dynamics back in 1999. This one takes place 1500 years after the events of Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain. It follows the story of a vampire-turned-wraith named Raziel. I remember that Soul Reaver was one of the best looking games at the time when it was released. This game consists of many puzzles that are solved by shifting dimensions and the combat system is hack and slash; this was back when I really enjoyed the hack and slash genre. It left a big enough impression on me as a kid that it deserves a spot in my top 10.
Dino Crisis is one of the few games I can remember actually completely beating when I was younger. My buddies and I used to all sit around the TV playing it all day long until we beat it. It is a survival horror game produced by Capcom in 1999. Dino Crisis plays very similar to a Resident Evil game, except it has dinosaurs instead of zombies. The story takes place on an island in 2009 where there is a secret laboratory conducting tests on weapons. The main character is Regina, who is sent to the island to capture the lead scientist who was supposed to be dead three years before this. Once they get to the island they discover that it is overrun by dinosaurs but have to continue their mission anyway. This was like playing Jurassic Park for a little kid. I loved every minute of it.
Published by THQ (rest in peace) in 2000; this wrestling game changed the way I viewed wrestling. I grew up as a wrestling fan like most other boys my age, but when I was able to actually play as my favorite wrestlers on my PlayStation I became a hardcore fan boy fast. This game seemed to be very advanced at the time of its release. It had 3D graphics that we all thought looked so real (looking back it’s just funny). You were able to create your own wrestler and taunts. There was a story mode that you could play with up to four of your friends and it had several storylines. This game was fantastic for any young wrestling fan like me and I very much enjoyed my time kicking ass and taking names in the ring.
This was a charming platform video game developed by Argonaut Software in 1997. It was one of the first games I owned on the original PlayStation which is why I have such fond memories of it. The game follows a crocodile named Croc that can walk on his two hind legs. He is trying to rescue the furry little creatures known as Gobbos from Baron Dante. The world is set up as a free roaming environment that you can explore at your own pace. Croc can jump on top of objects and attack with his tail whip/hit drop moves. This game has many similarities to other platforming games of this era such as Mario and Sonic the Hedgehog. This was a great game for me to start on the PlayStation since I had been used to those previous titles like Mario.
This was the best snowboarding game on PlayStation; it was developed by Idol Minds in 1998. There is not a whole lot I can say about it because if you know what one snowboarding game is like then you know what all snowboarding games are like. My mom bought it for my siblings and me to play in our free time. It became a huge hit with all of my sister’s friends and us. We would have competitions all the time for who could get the most points or make it down the hill the fastest. This is probably what led me to become more competitive in video games as I was only 8 when it was released. It was great for its time because it looked so realistic in the 90s, but now has aged and there are better snowboarding games out there. It still holds a special place in my memory of the PS1.
Digimon World was released around the same time as the first Digimon animated television series in 1999. Bandai made this game as a mixture between a role-playing game and a digital pet simulator. The story is about a human that gets transported into the “Digital World” and ends up in File City on File Island. He is asked to save the island because Digimon have been losing their memories and becoming feral. He takes on the task and is given his first Digital Monster (Digimon) based on your answers to a few questions. In order to return other Digimon’s memories, you have to battle them after you have trained yours to become stronger. After defeating them, they will return to File City and open up some sort of business. File City is a wasteland at the beginning but will turn into a populated, busy city by the time you are done. I played this game for so long growing up, and have even played it in recent years as well. It holds up really well for being over a decade old. The only problem with this game now is that it is SUPER expensive most of the time.
Spyro is another charming platform game that littered 90’s gaming. It was developed by Insomniac Games in 2000 and was the third game in the original five game series as well as the last one developed by Insomniac before moving on to Ratchet & Clank. This game follows a small purple dragon named Spyro as he travels to “Forgotten Worlds” after 150 magical dragon eggs are stolen from the land of the dragons by an evil sorceress. You will travel around to thirty different worlds and have to collect gems and eggs. This was easily one of my favorite series of games to play as a kid, and this one was the best of it.
This was the third game developed by Naughty Dog in the Crash Bandicoot series and was easily the best. It was the last one (in the main series) developed by Naughty Dog before moving on to Jak and Daxter. Warped is a 3D platform game that was released in 1998. The story continues from where the last Crash game left off. A space station crashes onto Earth and it unleashes an evil entity named Uka Uka. Crash and Coco Bandicoot have to travel through time and space to stop Uka Uka and his partner Doctor Nefarious Tropy from gathering enough powerful crystals to enslave the Earth. The gameplay in the Crash series is fast paced and fun. You have the ability to jump and land on enemies, use a tornado kick on them, and slide across the ground and body slam breakable objects. I loved this game so much and it was one of the few games I was ever able to actually beat all by myself as a kid.
The second game in the Digimon World series was released by Bandai in 2000 in Japan and 2001 in North America. It is a dungeon crawler role playing game which is very different from its predecessor. The story of this one follows Akira who lives in Digital City on a continent where Digimon used to live peacefully. For some reason they have started attacking Digital City so Akira joins a guard team and has to protect and return the peace to the region. You no longer raise your Digimon like pets as you did in the first game, and instead simply use them in battles. You will travel around to different labyrinth like dungeons called “Domains” in your tank which is called a “Digi-Beetle”. Your Digi-Beetle can be upgraded with various parts you find later on to get around traps and help you in battles. You can catch new Digimon in the dungeons by giving them gifts before battle. The battle system takes place on a separate battlefield and is turn based. You can have up to three Digimon in your active battle party at one time. Your Digimon can grow and turn into bigger and stronger creatures based on experience points, levels, and other various requirements. It is confusing and I was never able to fully understand the “Digivolving” process, but that didn’t take anything away from the appeal of the game. The graphics were nothing exciting even back at its release but that’s ok because of the fun style of play. It has, however, aged fairly well as I have also played this game recently. This is easily my favorite PlayStation game and is one of my favorite games of all time.
Do you agree with my choices? Is there a game you think belongs on this list? Be sure and let me know in the comments below!