Elden Ring was released in February, and it has now reached the point where players are discovering the game’s biggest secrets. The role-playing game is one of the biggest and most immersive releases in years, and with so many playing and being universally praised, it could be an all-timer that’s mentioned in the same breath as Skyrim in the years to come.
But despite recency bias, gamers have still brought up much older games as the greatest of all time. It seems that no matter how huge and epic a game is, it can’t compare to the memories Redditors have of much smaller games from several console generations ago.
Star Wars: Battlefront 2 (2005)
Star Wars: Battlefront 2 was ridiculed by gamers, and upon its release, EA was subject to scrutiny for including way too many in-game purchases, meaning that players had to grind in order to progress through the game if they didn’t make said purchases. However, that’s the 2017 remake of the much better 2005 release. The original Battlefront 2 was a landmark in gaming, and AllMightySmitey thinks it’s the best game of all time.
The Redditor explains, “The space levels were the best. Mixing space dogfighting with jumping out of your ship and fighting through to disable the other battle cruiser. Amazing.” The game’s levels were sprawling, and the sense of the depth of actual in-space wars felt like the final hour of Rogue One, something that every following Star Wars video game has failed to repeat.
While Hitman is such a creative stealth series, and Uncharted 4 featured some interesting stealth mechanics, Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater is the crown jewel of stealth gaming. The game has a gripping story set in the Soviet jungle, and it’s a harrowing personal journey for Snake, the protagonist, but it still features that signature fourth-wall-breaking humor. Brandog0 notes, “My all-time favorite game, that ladder tho.”
Metal Gear Solid is best known for its impenetrable narratives that are unapologetic when it comes to filling in new players. And that kind of stubborn approach sometimes bleeds into its gameplay, too. The Redditor is referring to a ladder that takes three minutes to climb. It’s completely unnecessary and nothing eventful happens whatsoever, but players have now found a glitch that lets them skip the ladder.
Tesseon writes an essay-length post about why Portal is so perfect, noting, “Excellent puzzle design and progression. It slowly teaches you the basics of Thinking With Portals as you progress and then challenges you to put it all together.” Though Portal is challenging, it’s great for any beginning gamer, as its mechanics are innovative but still simple and easy to learn. And it isn’t just a puzzle game either, as one of games’ great mysteries is unfolded in the 2007 release.
However, Portal wasn’t sold as its own game but was packaged with two other games as part of The Orange Box. The 2007 Valve release housed three of the developer’s most innovative games. Along with Portal, the package included Half-Life 2: Episode 2 and Team Fortress 2. And while one of those is an epic sci-fi adventure and the other is an endless replay value online battle royale, it’s the modest four-hour puzzle game that stole the show.
Shadow Of The Colossus (2005)
While Shadow of the Colossus isn’t anywhere near as popular as most AAA games, anyone who has played it generally considers it one of the greatest games of all time, and that includes Sprolly. The Redditor notes, “One of the only games I’m content to just sit and watch somebody else play instead of just playing myself. Such a jaw-droppingly beautiful game!” The user is not wrong, as the incredible vistas of the Forbidden Land and the Colossi themselves have inspired fan art as magical as the game.
The game is so beloved that it has been rereleased for almost every console generation since. After first being released on the PlayStation 2, it was remastered for the PlayStation 3, and then completely remade from the ground up for the PlayStation 4. It’s only a matter of time until the game gets the same treatment for the PlayStation 5.
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (2004)
Gamers could choose any one of the Grand Theft Auto releases as the best game of all time, and it’d be a totally valid choice. This user points to what is commonly referred to as the best and most influential, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. Unfortunately, last year’s remake of the game has tarnished the original’s legacy in some capacity, as every element of the remake was universally criticized and turned into memes.
However, there’s no denying how great the game is even today, and it was so vast and detailed that the following release, GTA IV, couldn’t match it. GTA IV, which was released on the next console generation, had inferior vehicle mechanics, a much smaller open world, and less freedom, as players couldn’t buy and sell houses or even visit fast food chains like they could in San Andreas.
Far Cry 3 (2012)
Redditor Ryoukunn thinks Far Cry 3 is on a level of its own. The Redditor mentions, “It was the game I compared all other open-world games I played after.” Though Far Cry 3 doesn’t have a sandbox like the Grand Theft Auto series where there are no rules and encourages absolute anarchy, the 2012 game’s open world is so immersive. Whether it’s the way the inside of each vehicle has stickers and ornaments unique to its owner or the surprisingly colorful jungle, no other sandbox game has ever been so alluring. And that’s why Far Cry 3 should be made into a movie.
Only a few games can claim that they feature breakthrough roles for actors, and Far Cry 3 is one of those. The game features Vaas (Michael Mando) a psychotic gang leader who loves to torture tourists, and he’s almost as iconic as any classic movie villain. The fascinating role turned Mando into a well-known actor and is most likely what helped him get the major role of Nacho in Better Call Saul.
Resident Evil 4 (2005)
Comfortable-Report52 thinks that the survival horror release is the greatest game of all time, explaining, “Damn, I will never forget the hype around RE4 when it launched. Capcom almost killed RE trying to chase that high.” The 2005 game was like lightning in a bottle, as the developer could never quite capture that magic again. However, that’s what makes Resident Evil 4 extra special, and every aspect of it is so unique.
With levels like the castle and characters like the Merchant, the game’s aesthetic is wonderfully gothic but still fun. And mechanics like having to stand still while shooting makes the survival game that much more terrifying. There’s a reason why the game is getting a remake, but it’ll hopefully be more like the Shadow of the Colossus remake and less like the Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas remake.
Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End (2016)
NateDAgr8m8 refers to Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, which took the Indiana Jones-inspired series to the next level, as the greatest game of all time. The game is essentially one massive flex from Naughty Dog, as it features movie-level storytelling, and, ironically, it’s more exciting, engaging, and emotional than its recent movie adaptation. The game perfectly wraps up Nathan Drake’s story in such a natural way but is still full of surprises.
The gameplay is improved tenfold, as it introduces so many new mechanics. Along with a new and very accomplished stealth element, A Thief’s End introduces a grappling hook, driving levels, deep-sea diving, and much larger levels that encourage exploration. Where most games that attempt so many things end up being mediocre (such as the new Saints Row), Uncharted 4 has the best driving mechanics, the best climbing mechanics, and the best underwater mechanics of its generation.
Batman: Arkham Asylum (2009)
A lot of gamers prefer the sequel, Batman: Arkham City, as it features the same great gameplay as its predecessor but in a huge, sprawling open world, but Thats1evildude thinks Batman: Arkham Asylum is the best game of all time. The Redditor calls it “a nearly flawless game,” and they’re not wrong, as it went on to influence a whole generation of games.
Arkham Asylum has a much better concept than its sequel, as Batman is trapped in the asylum with all the supervillains he had put in there, who all want revenge. And it’s still a large enough environment that players can freely explore the creepy hospital at their leisure. It also has a combat system unlike any other, which lets players pull off such satisfying combos, and games like Marvel’s Spider-Man wouldn’t have been as great if it wasn’t for the influence of the 2009 release.
Spider-Man 2 (2004)
It seems like there’s no such thing as Spider-Man fatigue, as there are so many movies about the web-slinger, the franchise has been rebooted twice at this point, and there are currently two different movie series running alongside each other. And that’s hardly different when it comes to video games, as there have been countless games that see players swinging through New York as Peter Parker, Miles Morales, or any other derivative of the character. However, while gamers take open-world New York Spider-Man games for granted, it wasn’t always like that.
MachoManErnieSavage points to Spider-Man 2, which was absolutely ground-breaking at the time, and it’s still fun to revisit today. Along with free roaming through the Big Apple, the game perfected boss battles, and it made mini-games like retrieving kids’ lost balloons and delivering pizzas so much fun. Though it’s unlikely, as it seems counterproductive to the upcoming release of Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, the 2004 game deserves a remake more than any other.
NEXT: 10 Scenes From Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man Trilogy That Get Better Over Time