The Monthly Question: August 2017

Monthly Question: August 2017

We are obviously all huge fans of the PlayStation brand. Our love of video games extends beyond PlayStation though. We all want video games to succeed no matter which console they are on.

PlayStation 4 is enjoying a huge lead over Xbox One this generation, but we can’t forget that Sony learned some valuable lessons from the Xbox and Xbox 360. What would the video game industry look like without Mario and the early work done by Nintendo?

To shine a light on other great games, I asked the PS Nation writers:

What is a game, that was not on a PlayStation console or handheld, that all video game fans should play?
Rey Barrera (PSN ID: sindred)
I was going to say the original Zelda because it’s one of my favorite games of all time, but that’s too easy. I chose Phantasy Star on the original SEGA Master System.

What you had was this incredible sleeper RPG that introduced so many concepts and ideas into the console RPG world. It had full screen, smoothly animated, 3D dungeons. It had a female protagonist in a time when dudes carried the swords.

It had a science fiction twist, when all other RPGs were leaning towards Dungeons & Dragons. It had a talking cat. It had fully animated enemies in first-person view. Every weapon you carried was represented visually in combat. It had three full planets to explore.

I’m not sure where to even stop. It was the reason why I switched sides from Nintendo to SEGA for a few years and it yielded three amazing sequels. The fourth game in the series was actually the final chapter in the story, and it really ended there.

The series continued with Phantasy Star Online, but that story started with where Alis ended, where most series keep milking the franchises until they are bled dry.

If you have access to Phantasy Star, give this one a chance. It still looks great for an 8-bit title.

Sam Jividen (PSN ID: SinfoniaSam)
The PlayStation 3 & 4 have been my go-to platforms for gaming for the past twelve years. However, at the end of 2016 I decided to take a dive into the PC.

After building my rig I immediately started building a Steam Library. Steam being such an open platform means there are TONS of Indie titles, many of which are complete trash, but that’s another topic.

The amount of amazing games to be discovered is staggering, but I would like to sing the praises of one title: Pony Island. This is one of those mind-f*#& titles that is so much more than its surface.

The basic premise is that you’re playing a game developed by Satan himself and he’s trapped your soul. In order to get your soul back you’ll have to use your wits and think outside of the box.

The game is incredibly clever, frequently breaking the fourth wall. It’s a shorter game that can be beaten in two or so sittings, and the price is right at $5 although it does go on sale fairly regularly.

It can be run on almost any PC or Mac as the minimum requirement is that you have 2GB of RAM. I’d HIGHLY recommend giving this game a playthrough. It’s an excellent example of the Indie community that is present on Steam.

Andy Richardson (PSN ID: andyscout)
Tokyo Mirage Sessions is an easy pick for me. This came out on the Wii U about a year ago and because it was only on that system it probably got overlooked by some folks.

Ostensibly meant to be a cross between the Shin Megami Tensei series and the Fire Emblem series, it only really draws base level inspiration from those materials.

Actually, the game feels a lot like a Persona game although sure, that series is itself an Shin Megami Tensei spinoff. The game looks good and plays well and is one of the few Wii U exclusives I’d actively recommend trying to rent/borrow a system to play.

Glenn Percival (PSN ID: Torgo)
TG16:
Ys Book 1 & 2
Blazing Lazers
Spriggan
Gates of Thunder
Ninja Spirit
Devil’s Crush

SNES:
StarFox
Zelda: A Link to the Past
Super Metroid
Cybernator
F-Zero
Super Castlevania IV
Super Mario Kart
Rock & Roll Racing

Genesis/CD:
Air Diver
Aladdin
Castle of Illusion
Streets of Rage
Strider
SoulStar

Saturn:
Assault Suit Leynos 2
Last Gladiators Pinball
Panzer Dragoon 1&2
Saturn Bomberman
Thunder Force V
Radiant Silver gun

Neo Geo:
Baseball Stars 2
Magician Lord
Viewpoint
Samurai Shodown 5
Metal Slug X
Pulstar
Neo Turf Masters

Atari 2600:
River Raid
HERO
Yar’s Revenge

Atari Jaguar:
Tempest 2000
Alien vs Predator
Iron Soldier

That should be a good start 😀

Shawn Hiers (PSN ID: Smag99)
I’d have to say Fable and Fable 2 for the Xbox. These are great games that had some stumbling blocks to overcome but I found this series to be very entertaining. From the quirky NPC’s to the dramatic storyline, the world is vibrant and lively.

Chazz Harrington (PSN ID: ChazzH69)
This is a tough one, not because I cannot think of a game, but there are too many to choose from. Out of all of them I would have to put Wave Race 64 just ahead of the rest, as it consumed loads of my time and was one I often used to show off the Nintendo 64.

The graphics are still good today and the water dynamics are a joy to behold. It was a game that I would always play and wish I still had the console just to have a quick blast.

Ben Palmer (PSN ID: CNPalmer)
It’s hard for me to remember a time when I didn’t dedicate my gaming to a Sony PlayStation console. In order to do that I’d have to go back to the early 90s when my favorite system was the TurboGrafx-16.

I can recall buying Ys Book I & II after spending $400 on the CD-ROM attachment, which back then was an enormous amount of money. That game perhaps had more impact on me than any other game I’ve played since.

It had amazing sound, full video anime cut scenes and full voice support. The interlude between the two discs was jaw dropping for me. I would recommend anyone go out and try to play this game if they can to see if it takes them back to a simpler time in gaming before we had to worry about pixel counts, color depths and resolutions.

Matt Engelbart (PSN ID: WithSwordAndGun)
I will always be a PlayStation fanboy but it was Halo and Fable on the Xbox that originally cemented my love for video games. The Xbox One has mostly been disappointing but for me, the one bright spot for Microsoft exclusives this generation has been Sunset Overdrive.

The story and over the top tone just grabbed me. There’s so much fun in the constant movement of bouncing off cars while grinding on everything in sight, all the while shooting records at enemies or launching teddy bears that explode after a few seconds.

It’s a shame that Sunset Overdrive was released before all Microsoft published games were released on PC too. If you own a Xbox One you owe it to yourself to check it out.

Your Turn
These are some of the non-PlayStation games we think you should play. How about yours? Tell us in the PS Nation Forums.

Thanks as always to John Payant for editing.

Written by Matt Engelbart

Matt Engelbart

I love all things video games. When I am not gaming I am watching the Kansas City Chiefs and Royals, BBQing, and reading.

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