I fondly remember the 32/64 bit gaming era. I started it with a bundle purchase of a Sony PlayStation, Ridge Racer and Tekken from Toys R Us. It wasn’t for a few months that a memory card was purchased, but that never saw my enjoyment cease. A year after the Nintendo 64 was released I had one in my possession. Unfortunately it took me until 2008 to call a Sega Saturn system my own, as the price and library never seemed enticing enough. While there were a few Saturn titles I enjoyed, none reached my top 25 list.
The 32/64 bit era also gave birth to my all-time favorite game, Suikoden. I know that seems like a spoiler, but the number of times I’ve mentioned my man crush with Konami’s RPG have been well documented, so sorry if that ruins any kind of non existent anticipation. But with that, lets take a look at my Top….25 – 2 32/64 Bit Games:
99% of you will likely have no clue what Herc’s Adventures is. That’s quite a shame too, even if it’s definitely not the most technically robust 32 bit games out there. Choose either Herc, Jason or Atlanta and play through the action/adventure title in a slightly overhead viewpoint, with lots of humor and definitely a ton of difficulty. Herc’s Adventures could be played with two players simultaneously, and that’s where the hilarity will ensue. There a number of issues overall, from its high difficulty, to its controls, to some repeated quips, but the slapstick, voice acting and especially its multiplayer gameplay stand out the most, and manages to place its self pretty high on this list.
After Final Fantasy VI, it seemed that every release within the franchise was only worth playing in multiples of three. Final Fantasy IX showed me this, with its enjoyable cast of characters, rather detailed visuals (which were a throwback to the deformed looks of the 8 and 16 bit era) and solid gameplay. To this day I still value the likes of Steiner and Vivi much higher than the likes of Cid and Tifa in VII, Zell and Riona of VIII, Wakka and Kimhari of X and so on. Final Fantasy IX wasn’t crafted to a near euphoric stature like VI was, but to me, this was the one significant title for the franchise during this era, and the one I consider the “true” Final Fantasy VII.
13. Castlevania: Symphony of the Night (PSX)
When I first heard that Alucard would be the lead in Konami’s initial 32 Castlevania title, I literally thought that they lost their minds. The end result was one of the defining titles for its generation. With so much real estate to explore and explore once more, the new equipment system and standards in audio excellence, Symphony of the Night turned out to be more than I ever thought it would be. It’s available on Xbox Live Arcade, though it really does feel more proper on the Sony PlayStation.
12. Resident Evil (PSX)
The game that got the ball rolling on one of the more cherished franchises in gaming, Resident Evil was as good of a launch pad as you could ask for with a new IP. What seems rigid and inconceivable these days (the controls, limited saves) were feasible back then. Exploring the mansion seemed liked such an epic adventure, with trepidation setting in during each new room discovered, though there weren’t as many legitimate scares as I would have hoped. Resident Evil also had some of the most laughably terrible voice acting ever, which further aided in its charm. This is one Jill sandwich that you need to take a bite out of.
11. Twisted Metal 2 (PSX)
The vehicular combat game to end all vehicular combat games. For any new game within the genre that’s released, I always put them up against Twisted Metal 2. Why wouldn’t I? For years I considered it the pinnacle of not only the franchise, but the genre its self. The weapon selection, the character selection, the stages, even the music were top tier quality stuff. It’s the kind of game that you could easily lose several hours on in the blink of an eye, yet remember each second of Axel blasting, Mr. Grimm smashing mayhem that occurred. I’m actually surprised this gem didn’t rate a bit higher on the list, but the ten titles left are all killers.