Tuesday’s Top Ten: Video Games

The letter I wrote to my television yesterday put me into a nostalgic frame of mind.  Ah, the good old days, when my tv and I would spend the mornings together over a hot cup of tea, or sit down for a lunch break, or go on those dates that ended in the wee hours of the morning, me sleeping on the couch while the tv, well, just kind of sat in the corner.

As I looked back over those years, I was suddenly reminded that my entire adolescence was spent staring at a television, but not to watch the shows.  No, video games were my preferred method of time-wasting.  And my top 10?  I’m glad you asked.

10) N64 Super Mario Cart – this game affected my college GPA by at least .25 of a point.  There were nights when my room mate Doug, good old Mario and I watched the sun set, and then rise, just the three of us, cruising through the jungle or down Rainbow Road.

9) Anything Legend of Zelda – I knew I had found the girl I would marry when Maile claimed to actually enjoy watching this game with me and trying to figure out the various puzzling boards.

8) 007 Goldeneye – this shaved another .25 of a point off my collegiate GPA, and also introduced into my vocabulary the words “proximity mine”

7) Double Dragon – I remember stuffing a $1 bill into the arcade change machine, hearing those quarters drop gleefully into the catcher, scooping their wonderful weight into my pocket, and running straight for the Double Dragon arcade game, wondering if life could get any better

6) Super Mario Brothers – when Chad Fisher was the first one of my friends to get the NES, and I played this game, I would lay awake at night pondering the most tactful way of approaching both his parents and mine to inquire about the possibility of getting adopted into his family

5) Pitfall Harry – running, jumping over alligators, clinging to vines, leaping over scorpions.  To my 6 year old mind, the only adventure more exciting was my morning bus ride.

4) NBA Jam – three words for you HE’S ON FIRE!

3) Sega’s EA Sports NHL Hockey – oh for the days when I could dominate an evening with Brett Hull at my command (when Burn wasn’t hogging the Blues)

2) Asteroids – a game in space?  with ever-approaching, splitting asteroids?  and UFOs? and a ship/small triangle that could shoot and even fly around if you so chose? Awesome.

1) Pacman – that simple theme song followed by the never-ending wakkawakkawakkawakka as pacman flew through the course was pure genius.  The brown ghost, Clyde, however, was not. Yet Blinky, the red ghost, was fast, and that made all the difference.

So what are some of the video games that take you back?

14 Replies to “Tuesday’s Top Ten: Video Games”

  1. Pac-Man – I’m with you there. . .

    My first video game was on the Commodore 64 computer my uncle bought us to help us get ahead in life. Unfortunately, we used it for little else besides this game called “Tooth Invaders” where you had to brush the little quotation mark and comma plaque off the giant teeth. Loved that game; isn’t that sad?

    1. that’s hilarious. never heard of that game – must have been before my time.

    1. actually, the only thing that’s sad/silly about that is how chris’s opponent will look when he realizes chris has taken the secret passage and is standing right behind him with the golden gun

      1. He and his friend Patrick know the game so well that they keep their characters facing the walls/floor instead of looking ahead because they could look at each others screens and know exactly where they are. Watching them sounds boring. :)

  2. Ah yes, NHL Hockey. I think we played that game for about 40 hours over a three day time period one year when we had off school because of snow. Burnie set up the Sega Genesis about a year ago at the beach house. And you can bet he was the Blues. Once again he did that stupid move to score.

    1. i distinctly remember that playing session. i think i was actually the sabres most of the time, relying on mogilny on the left wing. good to hear burnie is still cheating with hull.

  3. I have to admit, even HEARING the original Mario Bros theme song brings a wistful tear to my eye…oh the days when all you had to worry about was jumping on Bowser 3 times! I can’t believe Tetris wasn’t on your list. I would play that game so much that when I’d sit down to read a book in my mind I was trying to fit those stupid little shapes between the words and paragraphs.

  4. Mike Tyson’s Punchout – Never could beat Tyson

    Frogger – Don’t know why I loved this game, but I waisted many hours of my life playing this!

    Pitfall – Loved the original and the original hidden in the PS2 remake. My kids think it’s “lame”.

    Blades of Steel – Once played this with my buddy Wayne for 12 hours straight. My thumbs were sore for days….

    Centipede – Loved this game, then came Millipede…even better!

    Tron – Spent many hours and $$ at the Tastee Freeze playing this.

    Ms. Pacman – WAY better than the original

    Galaga – All time favorite video game. There was one in the convenience store a block from my house. I’d mow lawns all Saturday morning, then head down there to get a Coke, three hot dogs for a dollar, and then feed the rest into the Galaga machine. Held the top three scores for the entire summer!

    That is all. Gotta go, I’m missing Lost (Thank God for DVR!)

    1. great call with Mike Tyson, Blades of Steel and Ms. Pacman. Remember the Tron movie?

  5. as you pondered how to be adopted by the fishers, i pondered how to be adopted by the smuckers….for i too had fallen head over heels for mario and if only i could try ONE MORE TIME to jump over that flagpole and score more coins. and that ridiculous game “duck hunt”…..i can STILL hear that dog laughing at me…….i have many fond memories of playing super mario brothers for hours on end at your home…..and as Brandon said, it usually meant that there was snow on the ground and hot chocolate with mini marshmellows from your Mom.

  6. I’m right there on the N64 Mario Kart. I pretty much mastered Mario Raceway. I don’t know how I managed under 1:19 but I will never repeat it again. I actually sold my N64 last spring cuz I wasn’t playing it. I actually bought the Gamecube specifically for the Mario Kart Game.

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