6 More Retro Games That Are Still Fun and Worth Playing - Dangerously Genocidal


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Friday, 26 May 2017

6 More Retro Games That Are Still Fun and Worth Playing

A couple of weeks ago we talked about Six Retro Games that we would still sit down and play for hours. But, like several gamers pointed out – and quite correctly so – that there are way more than just six of these older games still out in the world. A few even went so far as to suggest a couple of additions, and we have enough games on our lists now to keep us busy for months! Thanks to everyone for their suggestions – and remember to leave a few suggestions of your own. I can’t do all the work around here. Now, without further ado, here are:

6 More Retro Games That Are Still Fun and Worth Playing

1. Dune Series, Westwood & Various (1992 – 2001)

Yes, I went there, and right on the very first game on this list, too – and with good reason. Dune, Dune II, Dune 2000 and Emperor: Battle for Dune all belong on this list. Each one has something that makes them different from the others, and the little unique elements and common that still make them fun to play, without losing the amazing story.

It was the game that originally got me into RTS games, and one which I lost a lot of my youth too – with no regrets whatsoever.

While the first Dune almost has a little bit of an RPG feel to it, Dune II and all the sequels are strictly real time strategy and resource management. As the series continued to grow, the stories became more elaborate, and short cut scenes turned into full-fledged filmed sequences. The controls have also improved over the years, but without losing the things that really make Dune, Dune.

There is no denying that these games are still fun to play – if you fancy yourself a real-time strategy player, and you haven’t played any of the Dune games yet… you’ve got a serious problem. Go. Now. Before I glue you to a screen with nothing but Dune to play

2. Diablo 1 & 2, Blizzard (1996, 2000)

I have a confession to make… I was always hooked on PC games, ever since I received my first copy of Dune – but, for some reason, I just never could get into RPG games. Because of that, it was a long time before I actually started playing the Diablo games. Once I did, though, it was very easy to see why people loved them so much, and why Blizzard is still releasing patches for these older games.

Most people are driven back to older games because the newer versions just don’t live up expectations. Diablo 3 almost fell into this trap, but thankfully Reaper of Souls was released, and fixed a lot of the problems. So… what keeps making people go back to the older Diablo games, then?

They’re fun. They’re dark and grungy and have enough loot to keep you going forever. It’s a hack and slash RPG that defines the genre. Better yet, it actually has a storyline – something that a lot of hack n’ slash RPG’s and dungeon crawlers just skip right over. The quality of the games still hold true – so yes, it’s perfectly alright to take the occasional break from DIII, and head back to the older, classic versions. It’s a decision you just can’t regret.

3. Tetris, Spectrum Holobyte (1984)

It is undeniable; you just need to hear the first few notes of the theme song, and you’ll immediately be whisked away into fond memories of hours lost to a never-ending wave of falling shapes. Match up those tiles and clear the screen, because when they reach the top, you’re through. That is Tetris, and for a game that’s so simple, it is absolutely timeless.

There have been so many different reiterations of Tetris over the years that it’s hard to believe it all started in 1984 in Russia – that’s over three decades ago, just in case you were wondering. Yet, even with how old it is, we still know the tunes, and we still spend hours trying to match up blocks with no clear end goal. And there isn’t one, either – it’s just clearing matches upon clearing matches as the falling blocks come faster and faster.

By the way, did you know that psychologists at Plymouth University did a study that said playing Tetris reduces food cravings? You can just see the advertisements now: “See the secret that makes diet companies hate him!”. Hours of fun, and healthy. A winning combination if there ever was one, and one we just can’t help but keep coming back too.

4. Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri, Electronic Arts (1999)

When it comes to turn-based games, the Civilization games pretty much set the standard, and they’ve been doing it for years. There are few things quite as easy as losing yourself to the little turning hourglass as you attempt global domination – whether peacefully and via diplomacy, or blowing the crap out of anything that moves. And, in the end, there was just one way to make Sid Meier’s Civilization series better – taking it to space.

You know you’ve got an unbeatable classic on your hands when the ‘new and improved’ spiritual predecessor falls flat on its face – and that’s exactly what Civilization: Beyond Earth did. It’s no wonder that millions of fans dropped the game to head right back to Alpha Centauri – which is, some would argue, the greatest turn based game ever made.

With enemies, alien life forms, good mechanics, and what is actually a really good story, Alpha Centauri is probably not going anywhere. It offers great quality for a game it’s age, and one that most turn-based fans will keep going back too – no matter how many times they try to create better ‘spiritual successors’.

5. StarCraft, Blizzard (1998)

Up until 2010 and the release of StarCraft II, it would have been pointless to tell anyone to go back and play StarCraft – they were still playing it anyway. As an avid strategy gamer, StarCraft was always one of my personal favourite games and one I would frequently go back to playing. I wouldn’t be the only person either; it’s a game that’s just so good and so much fun, you can’t help but go back to it.

The StarCraft stories were fun to play, and the single player campaigns held a whole new world of challenges. After playing through them the first time, it was just as entertaining to go back and see if you couldn’t find another, more creative solution to the problems they presented. Some people might even say that SCI is more challenging than SCII, and a game in which saving frequently wasn’t optional, it was a must.

Even with StarCraft II out in the world, the original and its expansion is still worth the play – especially if you’re new to the series and want to catch up on the story. In fact, for a lot of players – and me personally – the story was one of the things that made this game such an excellent and addictive favourite. And with a fan community as dedicated as it has, I’m pretty confident when I say that it will be a long time before this game falls off the radar – especially with the prospect of an upcoming overhauled version!

6. Populous 1 & 2, Bullfrog & Electronic Arts (1989, 1991)

Personally, I got on the Populous train a little late. Thankfully, the retro-train has a habit of making frequent stops and never quite running out of steam. After discovering the latest version of Populous, I went back to look at the original games – and it was clear why people still love them.

The Populous games are some of the best god-games available to play – that might either say a lot about the games, or about the current state of the god-game market. You decide. Whichever point of view you take, it has to be said that both Populous 1 & 2 are as addicting now as they were upon their initial release.

For the time, the games were both fun and challenging – and they still are, for that matter. There’s nothing quite like the rush of power you feel when you obliterate an entire civilization. In your name, of course.

If you don’t mind dealing with the graphics of the time, then Populous – and especially Populous 2 – are very high on the recommendation list. Go forth and impress your will on the people. Trust me, they’ll worship you for it.

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