GREAT GAMES OF THE LAST GENERATION
Just because these machines are obsolete doesn’t mean they didn’t see some awesome games in their time. You can play Gamecube games on Wii and XBox games on the 360. Here’s my picks for the best games of the last generation: Gamecube, PS2 and XBox.
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Released in 2001, the Nintendo Gamecube (GCN) was the predecessor to Wii, from the same generation of machines as the PS2 and Xbox. Although not as well known in Australia as its rival machines, the GCN was host to some incredible games- which is great news if you own a Wii. Thanks to full backwards compatibility, the Wii plays all Gamecube games, which means if you own a Wii, (and a Gamecube controller) you own a Gamecube, and there are some GCN games you simply must experience. Here are my picks for the best ever Gamecube games.
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Wave Race: Blue Storm
Jet ski racing at its brutally difficult best from Nintendo. The water and weather effects are to die for and still look great today. It’s hard but it’s rewarding- and unforgettable. And there’s real world sponsors- something rarely seen in a game from Nintendo themselves. Buy it here.
Mario Kart: Double Dash!!
Played Mario Kart Wii to death? Even if you haven’t, Mario Kart: Double Dash is awesome fun. It doesn’t have all the features of the Wii iteration, but in our opinion the tracks are better overall. Buy it here.
Resident Evil 4
The terror, the excitement, the chainsaws! This is the game that set the standard for the new generation. No game has ever blown me away quite like RE4 on Gamecube. It’s the best video game ever made for so many reasons and it’s looking to stay that way- probably forever. Buy it here.
Coming out near the end of Gamecube’s lifespan, Battalion Wars was largely overlooked. That’s a tremendous shame because it’s an awesome game- strategy/action with REAL GUNS AND BULLETS in a Nintendo published game? Sold. And it’s better than the Wii sequel thanks to near-perfect controls. War hasn’t been this much fun since Cannon Fodder on the Amiga 600. Buy it here.
One of the most difficult games ever made, this blisteringly fast futuristic racer from Nintendo is still an amazing experience today. With impeccable control and graphics to make every PS2/XBox owner green with envy, F-Zero GX is the best 50 odd dollars you will ever spend. Buy it here.
The Simpsons: Hit & Run
Easily the best Simpsons game ever, Hit & Run is still a blast to play. Drive around Springfield completing missions as the clock ticks down. It gets hard at times but this is the best digital representation of Springfield and its characters ever created. Why can’t all Simpsons games be this good? Plays and looks best on Gamecube. Buy it here.
Nintendo’s graphics showpiece for the Gamecube improves over the original in so many ways, and although the Wii’s New Play Control! Pikmin 2 version is probably cheaper- it doesn’t play as well as the GCN version. Buy it here.
Viewtiful Joe- Plays better on GCN thanks to the superior controller. Buy it here.
Super Mario Sunshine- It’s not Mario Galaxy but it’s still the best platformer of its generation. Buy it here.
ZOOCUBE- Crazy and addictive puzzle game, Connect Four style, with an animal theme. Buy it here.
GUN- Move over Red Dead, GUN is the definitive western adventure of the generation. A slightly upgraded version of GUN is available on 360. Buy it here.
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Released in Australia in November 2000, the Sony Playstation 2 is from the same generation of consoles as the Microsoft Xbox and Nintendo Gamecube, and has sold over 150 million units worldwide. With over 5000 games available, the PS2 had something for everyone. Here’s our picks for the best PS2 games ever.
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Build you own Jurassic Park! Grow your own dinosaurs, build attractions, and manage every aspect of your park in this real time strategy game. Visitor satisfaction, successful breeding, staff morale- it’s all managed by you in full 3D and it’s a heap of fun. Easy to navigate menus and an ace camera system make it a breeze to play. Don’t miss this one! Buy it here.
The quintessential wild west adventure from the people who made the Grand Theft Auto series, Rockstar Games. A 3rd person action shooter, Red Dead offers up a mix of awesome period weapons, over the top set pieces, some seriously obscure boss fights, (the pig man will make you laugh) as well as a strangely touching story to mesh it all together. Red Dead Revolver is second only to GUN in the wild west action stakes. Check out its sequel Red Dead Redemption on Ps3 and 360. Buy it here.
Capcom’s wacky platform/action masterpiece, Viewtiful Joe is packed full of funny characters, awesome special moves and wicked hard boss fights. Cel shaded graphics from a 2D perspective, Viewtiful Joe looked as unique as it played. If you’re after something truly different and challenging, Viewtiful Joe is the way to go. Buy it here.
Coming right at the end of the PS2′s life cycle, BLACK is an intense, gritty first person shooter with an emphasis on realism in terms of graphics, weapons, and story. Largely overlooked and critically under rated, BLACK was as good as an FPS gets- and it also featured the best graphics seen on PS2. Where’s the PS3 sequel? Buy it here.
Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal
The Ratchet & Clank series continues to impress and innovate in the third person action genre today, but their old skool adventures are still worth a look. Big weapons, big worlds, spot on controls, and a wonderfully entertaining story combine to make Up Your Arsenal the best of the (many) older Ratchet and Clank games. Classic name, too! Buy it here.
Mortal Kombat Kollection- The only Mortal Kombat disc truly worth picking up on PS2. Buy it here.
XIII- FPS adventure with celebrity voices and a wicked ‘living comic’ book art style. Buy it here.
GRAND THEFT AUTO SERIES- Chances are if you have a PS2 you’ve played a GTA game, but we thought we’d better at least honourably mention the games that don’t really need mentioning. Buy San Andreas here.
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Released in Australia in 2002, Microsoft’s Xbox console went on to sell 25 million units worldwide. Featuring a built in hard disk drive and robust online capabilities, Xbox delivered some of the best games of the generation. Here we’ll list some of our picks for the top Xbox games, and we’ll list the retail disc price, but just remember that if you have a 360 you can download many original Xbox games straight to your machine, as well as play them from an Xbox disc. Here are our pics for must play XBox games.
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Third person action at its challenging best, Ninja Gaiden redefined the genre in 2004. A wonderfully crafted combat system combined with heaps of unlockables and collectibles make Ninja Gaiden a fun (if sometimes quite difficult) ride from start to finish. Buy it here.
Dead Or Alive: Ultimate
Two games in one, DOA: Ultimate gives fighting fans the best Xbox has to offer. The set includes the original Sega Saturn DOA and an updated version of DOA:2. That’s the one you’ll want to play. Crazy characters, ridiculous environments and a deep yet accessible combat system made it a technical fighter everyone could have a go at. Buy it here.
Conker: Live & Reloaded
A remake of a classic Nintendo 64 game, Conker: Live & Loaded is an adult platformer with attitude to burn. With extra features and an expanded (but sadly not improved over the N64 version) multiplayer mode, Live & Reloaded is still a must play title. You can also download it on 360′s XBLA service. Buy it here.
Probably Microsoft’s greatest gaming triumph, this is where the Halo phenomenon began. It hasn’t aged too well, but for sheer historical value, (it brought online FPS mutiplayer to the lounge room, and its graphics were cutting edge at the time) Halo is worth a quick run through if you’ve never played. But it here.
Jet Set Radio Future
Skate around a beautiful cel shaded world, graffiti walls, avoid the cops, and grind grind grind. Wacky characters, a variety of mission briefs and a bizzarre plot involving a stolen statue all mesh together to make JSRF one of the most unique and enjoyable experiences on Xbox. Buy it here.
Buy it here.
JADE EMPIRE- Awesome third person action with incredible combat and weapons. Buy it here.
FABLE- Epic medieval style RPG that spawned the series. Buy it here.
ALIEN HOMONID- Side scrolling shoot ‘em up with an awesome hand drawn style. Buy it here.
Got a favourite Gamecube, PS2 or XBox game? Let us know by posting a comment below!
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