10 Video Games That Should Have Won Game Of The Year In The 1990s

Even though the Game Awards only began in 2014, there are numerous video games from the 1990s that would have won big!
Audiences are still analyzing the results of 2022’s Game Awards, and with the confirmation that the event will be held again in 2023, numerous titles are already vying for the title of Game Of The Year. However, the awards were not established until 2014, so many older works never had the opportunity to win big.

Decade of the 1990s marked a major turning point in the history of video games, with a number of truly remarkable games. If the Game Awards had existed, their monumental releases would have received the Game Of The Year Award or at least been nominated.

GoldenEye 007 (1997)

GoldenEye 007, widely regarded as one of the best James Bond video games, is praised for its fantastic multiplayer mode, which pits players against one another in all-out action warfare. However, the title’s marketing campaign should not be overlooked.

This first-person shooter was created by Rare and Ultimate Play the Game, and it utilized stealth mechanics to blend its spy-based premise with all the conflict gamers would expect from a James Bond adventure. This Nintendo 64 classic is deserving of an award because it is fast-paced, memorable, and still an all-time favorite. It is now accessible on the Nintendo Switch, Wii, and Xbox One platforms.

Super Mario 64 (1996)

Super Mario 64 demonstrated the full potential of the protagonist’s franchise. The narrative was vivid, full of life, and completely whimsical. This initial Super Mario release from Nintendo, which won numerous awards at the time of its release, has been imitated by every Super Mario game since.

While there are a few harsh realities to be discovered upon replaying the game, there is still something very timeless about the Mario hit that cemented the series’ legacy and paved the way for future 3D gameplay mechanics. It was originally released on Nintendo 64 and iQue Player and is now accessible on Nintendo Switch, Wii, and Wii U.

Pokémon Blue, Red & Yellow (1996)

Nintendo and Game Freak have consistently sought new ways to evolve the Pokémon franchise. However, it all began in 1996 with the release of Blue, Red & Yellow, the first installment of a series that would become a global phenomenon.

For the impact on gaming history alone, these releases should have received some sort of Game Of The Year award, but the impact of this RPG at the time should not be forgotten. With hidden locations to discover, a Pokédex to complete, and a unique battle system, it’s not surprising that the Game Boy title captivated audiences. Since then, it has been released for Game Boy Advance and 3DS.

Grim Fandango (1998)

The 1990s were largely defined by role-playing games and first-person shooters, two genres that put players at the center of the action and require quick decision-making. Grim Fandango took a different approach to this trend, despite the fact that point-and-click adventures are still considered the pinnacle of their genre.

Developed by Lucasfilm Games, this would have been an unconventional and unusual Game Of The Year Award winner, but its beautiful premise, Day of the Dead aesthetic, and puzzle-solving mechanics continue to make it a must-play on the PlayStation Vita, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.

Half-Life (1998)

Half-Life defied the odds to such a degree that it would have been criminal if it had not won the Game Awards for the year it was released.

Half-Life is an unforgettable classic from Valve, Gearbox Software, and Sierra Entertainment, even though fans are still disappointed that the third sequel was cancelled. The spectacle of the puzzle-solving, horror story, and gruesome shooting contributed to a horror and sci-fi combination that drove the genre on Windows and PlayStation 2.

Star Wars: Dark Forces (1995)

Lucasfilm Games and LucasArts created a legacy that very few studios could match during their time in the business. While audiences are certain to welcome the return of the gaming division, Star Wars: Dark Forces serves as a reminder of what they are capable of producing.

The first-person shooter was a breath of fresh air for the galaxy far, far away, focusing on a hybrid hero who was not as straightforward as some of the other characters fans had previously followed. Due to its new direction and streamlined design, the PlayStation and Microsoft game undoubtedly would have won numerous Game Awards.

Sonic The Hedgehog (1991)

Sonic the Hedgehog is a significant figure in gaming culture. It is difficult to examine the industry’s development without mentioning the SEGA character. The success and brilliance of the original release by SEGA, Sonic Team, M2, Backbone Entertainment, and Ancient are entirely responsible for this.

The character design alone and the world-building of Sonic’s landscape legitimized a franchise that had the legs to continue into the far future, and the mechanics to keep thrilling audiences. Although it was a side-scrolling platformer, somehow this SEGA Genesis project transcended its potential and would have garnered a Game Of The Year Award.

DOOM (1993)

Players continue to return to a cult classic video game. Even though there are remakes and sequels, DOOM’s bloody first-person shooter action and alien appeal continue to captivate audiences. Part horror and part science fiction, DOOM’s graphics may not hold up, but it excels in terms of gameplay.

DOOM was created by id Software, GT Interactive, Rage Games, David A. Palmer Productions, and Williams Entertainment Inc. for the SNES. The game’s appeal is largely based on its exciting premise, which is realized as players embark on an intense space marine mission.

Super Mario Kart (1992)

Returning to the Mario universe, not only Super Mario 64 influenced the rest of Nintendo’s 1990s releases. Indeed, the company collaborated with BNE Entertainment to create Super Mario Kart for the SNES, which became the system’s best-selling game due to its widespread appeal.

Although the concept has been improved with fun shortcuts, kart customization, and a much larger roster, the bare bones of the concept are still present in Super Mario Kart, with players loving the ability to race as these fan-favorite characters. The Game Awards would have been foolish not to make mention of the game. Don’t forget that popular games are equally popular like pacman 30th anniversary.

Final Fantasy VII (1997)

Final Fantasy VII has one of the best narrative arcs in the Final Fantasy series, which has a history of showcasing some of the most beautiful storylines in video games. Graphically, mechanically, and narratively, this is a Game Of The Year contender, with many fans arguing that this could be the summit that will never be surpassed.

Crafted by Square Enix and Sony Interactive Entertainment, the game was initially released on the PlayStation, but it has since been released on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Windows, Nintendo Switch, and even Android, demonstrating its longevity and capacity to continue surprising audiences, thereby adding to an already stacked list of RPG masterpieces.


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