Spy Hunter

With its smart weapons, awesome cars, Spy Hunter was viewed as a very stylish game back in the arcades on the early 1980s. It was a title that playing into any boy's fantasies- secret agents, nasty weaponry, and a driving lincese. Make no mistake though, it was the action packed gameplay that kept people coming back for more again, again, and again...


The year that the war ground on may have been 1943, when rationing continued to bite down hard, construction work on the Pentagon was completed, and the Japanese forces were driven back from Guadalcanal, but it's a whole lot more enjoyable if you think of it as this wonderful little vertical-scrolling shooter from Capcom, released for the delight of the arcade-going populas in 1987...


The game isn't just a good looking isometric dungeon crawler, it is THE best dungeon crawler. A simple - almost brainless trek through caverns and catacombs filled with vile creatures, not to mention all the loot. Blizzard spent a lot of time working on the generation of the game's spaces, making items, enemies, and geography be different every single time you load up the game...

The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind

The Elder Scrolls games are best known for the fourth chapter in the series, Oblivion, released in 2006. In comparison,The Elder Scroll's Morrowind is altogether more of a curate's egg, neither as commercially successful nor critically applauded as it's successor. Perhaps because of that, however, it's also a much more interesting game...


Rogue first appeared on college Unix systems in 1980. It contains an infinite variety via a series of randomly generated, ASCII-rendered dungeons that must be explored in a bid to retrieve the Amulet of Yendor (Rodney spelled backwards) from somewhere behold the twenty-fifth level -- an unlikely achievement given the imposing difficulty of even the earliest dungeon layers.

06 April, 2011

Super Mario Bros.

  • Release Date: 1985
  • Platform: NES
  • Developer: Nintendo
  • Genre: Platform

The problem with classics, is that they are old. They usher in great changes and they redifine the landscape, but less influential games perfect the trends they started and end up being a lot more fun to play. For example, StarFox isn't as ground breaking as Asteroids as far as space games go, but anyone stuck in an elevator would undoubtedly prefer it as a means to pass the time.

And yet, while Super Mario Bros. did so much to define the side-scrolling platformer, twenty-odd years on its still one of the best there is. It's colours may seem a little muted by today's standards, and its ironic plumber's mustache lacks definition, but this has excellent enemy design, tricky, secret-packed worlds, and an unforgettable soundtrack.

Most of all, Super Mario Bros. has a sense of believable physics - something still missing from modern day platformers. Set Mario running, and you'll need time and space to get him to slow down; attempt a big jump, and you're going to have to get a running start; bounce on an enemy, and you may still need to fine tune your landing while still in the air. All of which gives the game the precision necessary to allow for a cluster of tightly paced underground and overworld levels, with their gloriously destructable environments and famous power-ups, like the growth mushroom and the fire flower. Super Mario Bros. is venerable, then, but not remotely rickety: a simple delight that can still give far more complex games a comprehensive run-around.

03 April, 2011


  • Release Date: 1998
  • Platform(s): PC
  • Developer: Blizzard Entertainment
  • Genre: Real-Time-Strategy

StarCraft was the first western title to pin it's success on South Korea. There was something about this real-time sci-fi strategy game that touched a nerve, making StarCraft a staple of the country's multi-player PC cafes, which were emerging in the 1990s, leading to the sale of 4.5 million copies in the territory. It also helped to establish South Korea's professional gaming scene.

Of course, with more than 11 million sales worldwide, StarCraft is one of the best-selling PC games ever made. Yet while initial reviews were unanimously positive, it's fair to say that no one foresaw StarCraft as being quite the success that it has become. Despite the isometric graphics, the game isn't especially impressive, and less successful rival games have an edge in RTS innovation with unit control and resource management.

But StarCraft has a very special trick up its sleeve: three completely distinct and playable races. The Terrans (Humans), the Zerg (nasty, swarm aliens), and the Protoss (high tech, religious warriors) all have their own units that don't just look different but play diffferently too. For instance, as Zerg you can burrow underground and attempt to overwhelm your opponent with sheer numbers, while as Protoss you have fewer units, but much more powerful weapons at your disposal. Upon release, no reace was blatently over powered, and Blizzard has maintained this balance very well with occasional patches that address multiple tatics.

The combination of diversity and balance is extremely difficult to achieve, Blizzard overcame this challenge with StarCraft and followed it up with a well deserved sequel, StarCraft II.