For those of us old enough to remember, the NES (Nintendo Entertainment System) was the first real gaming console that captured the hearts of American gamers. It was on this console that gamers were first introduced to such famous figures as Mario, Megaman, Ninja Gaiden, Final Fantasy, and many more.
Other classic characters from this console were never brought back in later games despite their large popularity. These games need to be given a second look by young gamers, as they are an exciting part of gaming history. Keep in mind you can still play retro games at various sites. Our favorite one is linked.
1. Ninja Gaiden II: The Dark Sword of Chaos – Released in 1990, this is actually the second in the series on the NES console. You control Ryu, a ninja who battles other ninjas to save your girlfriend. The game features impressive levels and a variety of weapons that make the game a pleasure. There is nothing quite like killing scores of orange ninja clones.
2. Final Fantasy – Released in 1990, this was one of the most influential games of all time and has today spurred over 12 sequels. With RPG history of his caliber, it is something worth taking a look at. The game features traditions of Final Fantasy that fans will delight in seeing in their first incarnation.
3. Megaman 6 – In 1994, already far into the Megaman series, this game admittedly does not bring anything new to the Megaman series, but as the last Megaman released on the NES, it is worth a look for gamers who don’t want to go back any further into bad graphics territory.
4. Dragon Warrior IV – Released in 1992, it is arguable whether this or its predecessor Dragon Warrior III deserves the spot. Either way, the Dragon Warrior series is an excellent example of the RPG sector of the NES. Along with Final Fantasy, Dragon Warrior paved the way for future RPG games which relied strongly on good storyline and intricate battle systems.
5. Kirby’s Adventure – The Kirby game series was actually started on the Gameboy, but in 1993 it was brought to the NES in impressive form. The cute character of Kirby found his way into gaming hearts with his fun abilities, minigames, and clever level design.
6. Kid Icarus – Though partly only raised in popularity recently by Super Smash Bros. Brawl, Kid Icarus was a strong game in its own right when it came onto the scene in 1987. Combining elements of Metroid and Zelda, the game pioneered some of the first action gaming ever seen and in a fun and engaging way.
7. Super Mario Bros 2 – What would any list be without Mario on the scene. In this 1988 title, gamers were wowed by the fun levels and creative characters of the series. With virtually nothing to complain about with this game, players were completely blown away by the fun that they were having.
8. The Legend of Zelda – Released in 1987, it took the world by storm by its fun gameplay despite its lack of any real storyline. The second Legend of Zelda came a year later and was arguably the stranger of the two. It introduced experience points into the world of Zelda, making it more like the RPG series which gained popularity. This was a decision that was ultimately not approved of for future games, but it is still a fun and interesting game that is worth a look at.
9. Duck Hunt – Released in 1985 with a special gun and sensor, this game quickly became a huge part of popular culture. The gameplay was simple and yet addictive: players aim their guns at passing ducks that zoom by quickly and try to hit as many as possible in a short period of time while your faithful hound gathers them or laughs at you when you miss. Classic.
10. Metroid – In 1987 our beloved female bounty hunter made her way into the scene battling aliens in her unique way. The game has been complained about for being difficult, but despite this it is a famous title that has created an entire series throughout Nintendo history.
Castlevania II: Simon’s Quest – In 1988 the NES got one of its most beloved games that gamers know only little about today. This game involves traveling through side-scrolling levels of darkness and evil to hunt down vampires and other creatures of the night with your innovative group of weapons. The game was very impressive for the time and is still as addictive as ever.
Bomberman – In 1987 the world was introduced for the first time to this famous puzzle/adventure game which uses square stages full of obstacles and a little man with bombs to fill hours of your time. A fun game and a notable slice of history for the puzzle game genre as well as an early adventure game. Link from Zelda could have taken a page from Bomberman’s book when it comes to his bomb weaponry.