Thursday, November 29, 2012

Top Ten video game genres part 2

         This is the second part of my Top Ten favorite genres in video games. Remember, this is a personal list so if your favorite genre isn't number one or isn't even on the list, don't insult me and make your own. I wanted to make this list for a very long time and now that we are here, let's continue with our number five entry on this list.

5. Arcade/Futuristic Racing

    Say it right now, Simulation Racers bore me. I'm not saying they're bad but really, they aren't fun to me. So where do I go for my racing needs? As you have clearly read, I got for Futuristic and Arcade Racing games.  What I've read, Space Race was the first Futuristic Racing game to be release (1973). I may be wrong. As for Arcade Racing games, I'm not really sure. But, for now, enough with the history of Arcade/Futuristic Racers. Let's talk about why I love Arcade/Futuristic. I prefer Arcade/Futuristic Racing games for the fact that they are a lot more fast-paced, especially the Futuristic Racing ones like F-Zero and Sonic Riders to name a few (Yes, I LOVE Sonic Riders). Also, they have a lot more enjoyable multiplayer than the simulation ones, at least from I've experienced. Also, they are a LOT more intense than Simulation Racing games even though Simulation Racing games are considered the ''hardcore'' ones. Finally, the main reason why I prefer Arcade Racing and Futuristic Racing games more than Simulation Racing games is that... THEY'RE MORE ENJOYABLE! I know, it is an underdeveloped reason but this is my list. But in all seriousness, there are SO much more Arcade/Futuristic racing games I like. I would say I don't play them very often but, like Real Time Strategy games, when I do, I enjoy it. Some of my favorites are Mario Kart (Double Dash especially), Sonic Riders (The first one), H2Overdrive (An arcade game I recommend highly) and my personal favorite, F-(Freaking)-Zero (Like you need an explanation on this one) and I'm not even scratching the damn surface! With all that being said, I proudly put Arcade and Futuristic Racing games at my number five spot on this list.

4. Fighting games

         You should of seen it coming.  Fighting games are a fan favorite and it's no different with me. They're awesome! Now, let's start with a brief history about Fighting games. The fighting genre started with boxing games in the late 70s with games like Heavyweight Champ (1976) and Warrior (1979). Fighting games started gaining notable popularity in the 80s with a little game called Street Fighter (1987). but they truly became a popular genre when the 90s came with games like Killer Instinct, Street Fighter, Tekken, Mortal Kombat and Soul Edge just to name a few. Ever since, the fighting genre has become one of the most recognized genres in video games. Now that we're done with the history behind Fighting games, let's talk about why I like them. For one, they are INTENSE. Like, it is almost impossible to find a fighting game that is not intense. Also, they're usually fast-paced and you know I like my games to be FAST. Not only that but they truly test your skills as a gamer and are one of the most competitive genres ever. They're varied, they're tough and they allow for someone seriously awesome looking, stylized fights that simply can't be replicated in movies. Truly, Fighting games are for those who seek challenge and have a passion for flashy moves (Y'know, like me). And before I forget, the fighting genre is home to some of my favorite art styles in video games. My only problem with fighting games is the combat mechanics. Sometimes, they'll take you a long time to master and are often too complicated. But that doesn't really apply to all Fighting games. There are games like Super Smash Bros. where each button does one thing making the game a lot easier to master. Want to throw a fire ball? Press B. Want to shoot a missile? Move your analogue stick left or right and press B. Not too complicated, isn't it? My second problem with Fighting games are the spam attacks. So many great fighting games are cursed with spam attacks which makes the experience frustrating. But not all Fighting games have this problem. Dragon Ball Z Budokai 3, for example, is a game where if you try to use spam attacks, you can easily get countered. Some of my favorite Fighting games are Super Smash Bros. Melee and Brawl, the Dragon Ball Z games, Tatsunoko vs. Capcom and the underrated Digimon Rumble Arena 3 for the GameCube and PlayStation 2 just to name a few. With that being said, Fighting games are number four.

3. Action RPG

          Yeah, RPGs are on this list. You shouldn't surprised. And yes, I chose Action Role Playing games instead of turn-based ones. Why? Well, pretty much for the same reasons why I prefer Real Time Strategy games over Turn-based Strategy games: They're more fast-paced. Yes, I'm starting to sound like a broken record for saying that I prefer this over that because it's more fast-paced but this is the last time I say this... I hope. Now back on topic. I'm not saying turn-based RPGs suck or anything like that. It is just that pretty a button waiting for my character to attack then letting the enemy attack me is really not my thing. Action RPGs, in the other hand, the combat system is intense! You have to attack your enemy and kill it before it kills you, much like an actual fight. I mean, seriously, would wait for your opponent to hit in order to hit him?  Well, enough with the nitpicks. The history. Action RPGs came into existence in the 80s with games like Dragon Slayer and the sack of rotting dicks that is Hydlide. From there on, they kept growing in popularity with big names like the Legend of Zelda and the Tales games. Well, I'd say that enough history for Action RPGs. Now, aside from the combat system, Action role playing games are very similar to their turn-based counterparts. You have the side quests, you have your level up system, you have tons of items to help you in battle, you have your big overworlds and it is the primary genre developers go for when they want to make a great story with tons of memorable characters. With all that being said, there is a lot to love about Action RPGs. Another thing I like, they usually take a while to beat. But why is it only at number 3? Well, let's say I'm not a big fan of grinding. Grinding is to me what quick time events and backtracking is to others. Some games do it right, like Xenoblade, where it doesn't take too long to get to the next level but the vast majority do it horribly (MapleStory & RuneScape). Also, some Action RPGs like to introduce a thousand of game mechanics to torture you. Well, OK,  I am overexaggerating. But, number 1 and 2 manage to be hard without introducing a lot of game mechanics to confuse the player. But on the positive side, it adds a lot more to the strategy. But even with these two flaws, I still really like Action RPGs because of how they pay a lot of attention to the artistic direction, because it's the best genre to go to for great stories and fantastic characters, because of this feeling of adventure you get when you play one and also because of the great music. Action RPGs are my number three. Here's a bronze medal for ya.

2. Action Adventure

    Hell. Yes. Action Adventure games HAD to be high on this list. The Action Adventure genre is one of the greatest in gaming. There's almost nothing I hate in this genre. Now, I know some of you are thinking ''But there is no perfect genre in gaming'' and this is true. Just that there is almost nothing I hate about Action Adventure games. Now, a little bit of history. The Action Adventure genre started way back in the late 70s with a little game called ''Adventure'' for the Atari 2600 and before Adventure, there was Colossal Cave Adventure (1976). Except Colossal Cave Adventure was a text-based game while Adventure had some Action elements in it. But the Action Adventure would truly awaken in the 80s with games like The Legend of Zelda, Metroid, Metal Gear and Prince of Persia. That's enough history for now. Now, let's talk about why I love Action Adventure games soooooo much. Well, for one, they aren't overly complicated like RPGs and certain Fighting games. Second, they're as lengthy as RPG games (minus the time you waste on grinding). Three, it has so many good sub-genres. Some of them include Stealth games (Metal Gear Solid), Survival Horror, Sandbox games and First Person Adventure (Metroid Prime). And these aren't all of them. Fourth reason why I love this awesome genre is that most of the things I like in video games can be found in Action Adventure games. For example, boss battles, art styles (Okami and Wind Waker), items/upgrades, music, creepy levels, open worlds, you name it. Also, it is not a genre that is in desperate need of more games (like Rail Shooters) but it does not come wave after wave, like First Person Shooters. Also, it does not have these annoying spam attacks you can find in most Fighting games. Now, if you force me to say what is wrong with this genre, I would have to say that it really isn't the best genre for online. But since I mainly a single player gamer, I don't care and Action Adventure games are by far one of the best genre for single player gamers. There are just so many great games in this genre. The Legend of Zelda, Metroid, Metal Gear, Assassin's Creed, Okami, the Arkham games, Luigi's Mansion and I'm just naming a few. Truly, it is a fantastic genre that keeps producing masterpiece after masterpiece. But even with all these good things being said, it is just number two. What could top Action Adventure games?

As usual, we will recap before we get to our number one.

10. First Person Shooters

9. Rail Shooters

8. Survival Horror

7. Real-Time Strategy

6. Puzzle

5. Arcade/Futuristic Racing

4. Fighting

3. Action RPG

And finally

2. Action Adventure

Really, it wasn't hard for me to pick a number one for this countdown.

1. Platformers  

       Yes, I chose Platformers as my favorite genre in video games. And I'm including both 2D and 3D platformers. I honestly can't think of another video game genre that can top Platformers. Some of you may wonder why I put Platforming games as my number one even though I said there was almost nothing to hate about Action Adventure. Well, because Platformers are just better in my opinion. Now, before we get to why I love Platformers over all the other genres, I'll talk about its history. It all started in the early 80s (Gosh, the 80s were revolutionary for the gaming industry) with games like Donkey Kong and Space Panic. Back then, Platformers weren't the side-scrolling Platformers we know today. The action happened in one screen. Then, still in the early to mid 80s, Platforming games became side-scrolling 2D games where you start at point A and get to point B, like Super Mario Bros. The next big innovation came in the early 90s, where platform games met with the third dimension with games like Bug! and Alpha Waves. Back then, 3D platformers weren't really what you think they were. That would take a few more years. Then, Super Mario 64 comes out in 1996, revolutionizing 3D platform games and setting the bar for modern platformers at the same time. Now onto why I consider platform games my favorite genre of all time. First of all, like Action Adventure games, Platformers are home to many great sub-genres such as Cinematic Platformers, Run and Gun platformers and Metroidvania games. My second reason is that unlike Fighting games, most Platformers are very easy to learn. It manages to be a very challenging genre despite a rather simple learning curve (Castlevania and Contra comes to mind). Also, unlike RPGs, it does not introduce a billion mechanics that will confuse newcomers. Third reason why I absolutely love Platformers, they fuse well with other genres. For example, Super Paper Mario shows us that Action RPG and platformers can work together, Sly shows us that Platformers and Stealth games can in fact fuse well together, Ratchet & Clack does the same for Third Person Shooters and Platformers and Pushmo shows us that Puzzle games and Platformers work well. Fourth reason, they work well as multiplayer games as they as single player games. Just look at Rayman Origins, Kirby's Return to Dream Land, New Super Mario Bros. Wii, Little Big Planet. Something that can't really be said about Action Adventure games. It's a genre that isn't dying like Survival Horror and Rail Shooters but they don't come wave after wave like RPGs and First Person Shooters. Also, much like Action Adventures, some of my favorite things in video games can be found in Platformers. Boss battles, power-ups, creepy levels, fast-Paced gameplay, beautiful art styles, flashy moves, etc. Also, there many different kinds of platformers and I'm just talking about different dimensions. For example, there are different kinds of 3D platformers. NOTE: The following segment is inspired by Gexup's video about 3D Platformers. You have your point A to point B platform games like the 3D Sonic games and Crash Bandicoot. Then you have mission and collect games where can choose a mission and then accomplish the mission. 3D Mario games are examples. Then you have task and exploration platform games where you go to a level and accomplish whatever tasks there are to accomplish, like Banjo Kazooie. It's a genre that puts a lot of emphasis on level design as well. Rayman Origins is a great example of great level design in platform games as well as the Sonic The Hedgehog games. Truly it is an incredible genre and there's just so many great things to say about Platformers that I might as well write an entire article about them. With all that being said, I proudly give the number one spot to Platformers, both 2D and 3D.

I hope you enjoyed this article because I sure did.

Have a nice day!

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