I’m taking this idea from Terry the Traveller, formerly known as The Traveller of Tyria, were he mentioned 20 games that changed him and briefly described how. I decided to do it in blog format because I knew I wouldn’t be able to condense how some of these games changed my life in 140 characters or less. I decided to break it down in 4 parts. I tried to make the original list in chronological order, but then I started remembering some other games, so in the end, they are not entirely listed in order. Hope you enjoy it!
Super Mario Bros. series
Super Mario Bros. was the first video game I remember playing (My mom had an Atari, but I don’t remember playing it before the NES). Back then, we didn’t have such easy access to information about games. The closest we had in Puerto Rico was the spanish Club Nintendo magazine, but since it was aimed mainly for Latin America it always contained outdated information (Puerto Rico is a US Territory), but I digress.
I clearly remember talking with friends at school about the secret 1 Ups we found, or the amazing Warp Zone someone discovered that allowed us to skip entire worlds. I was completely blown away when my brothers and I found out the princess was in another castle and we were merely beginning our adventure. I remember running like a mad man when all those Cheep Cheeps started flying out of the water in world 2-3.
To this day, I still feel the urge to play Super Mario Bros. every once in a while.
Super Mario Bros 2. Started my fandom for both Peach (Back known as Princess Toadstool) and Toad, and I didn’t put Super Mario World down until I made sure I found ALL the secrets in the game. I’ll always look fondly at Mario for all the years of fun it has provided to many different ways.
2. Mendel Palace
This is pretty obscure game I’m sure very few people will recognize. My grandfather bought it as a gift for my brother (He got 3 cheap NES games, one for each of us)
This game introduced me to the wonderful idea of playing simultaneously with another person and it quickly became a household favorite. It was also the first game we beat from beginning to end (No save points or passwords for this game!)
3. Secret of Mana
You’ll notice a trend in my list about multiplayer games. While Mendel Palace was the first game that allowed me to play simultaneously with one of my siblings, Secret of Mana let me play with both of them. It was the first text heavy game (being an action RPG). This was just the first of many games that made me grab a dictionary to try to understand what was going on or where I had to go. I can’t credit it for making me learn a completely new language, since I used to speak English when I was very little, but I forgot much of it when I moved back to Puerto Rico when I was four years old.
4. Super Bomberman series
Yep, another multipayer game. I spend countless hours playing Bomberman with friends and family. Games like these made me love multiplayer games even more, and have a blast with them? (Get it? Blast? Because Bombermen use.. oh never mind!)
5. Final Fantasy series
When I was a kid, I didn’t know what an RPG was, even after I played and beat Secret of Mana. It wasn’t until I played Super Mario RPG that I learned what it was, and that there was even turn based RPG. I can’t really remember which FF was my first: VII or Tactics, but both turned me instantly into definite RPG fans. My English was polished enough not have to rely on dictionaries (that didn’t mean I understood most of the plot, tho) but being able to customize my characters felt awesome, and I loved each game for what it allowed me to do. As older games were re-released, I was able to play pre- FFVII games, never finished them, but allowed me to appreciate them enough still want to finish them eventually. To this day, Final Fantasy Tactics is still my favorite Tactical RPG.