10. Goof Troop (SNES)
Sometimes it’s fun to see where successful people get their start. Goof Troop is Shinji Mikami’s first game as designer. After making adorable games based on cartoons, such as Roger Rabbit on the Gameboy and Aladdin on the SNES, Mikami became the known for popularizing the survival horror genre. Mikami is the creator of the Resident Evil series. The gameplay is simple. You control Goofy from top down, navigate through mazes, throw plants and kick boxes. It’s pretty similar to Shigeru Miyamoto’s Mole Mania on the Gameboy. Everyone knows about Mole Mania, right? It’s not just me? Alright, so we’re all on the same page.
9. Simpsons Road Rage (PS2, XBox, Game Cube)
Basically, you take Crazy Taxi, add a few levels and insert the Simpsons. The result is more than just a Crazy Taxi rip off. The game has personality, and allows fans to drive through springfield in full 3D for the first time. It might not be as good as Cazy Taxi, but it’s more expansive, and also takes place in Springfield.
8. Simpsons Hit and Run (PS2, XBox, Game Cube)
And yet, another Simpsons game. Road Rage started the trend of inserting their characters into other people’s games. This time, the Simpsons are inserted in a Grand Theft Auto like setting. Although, still taking place in Springfield, characters can run on foot, or drive a car around the city compleating missions. Again, might not be as good as Grand Theft Auto III, but it takes place in Springfield. I don’t think any of the Grand Theft Auto games take place in Springfield. Perhaps one day…
7. The Adventures of Batman & Robin (SNES)
Batman: The Animated series is perhaps the best incarnation of Batman to ever see the small screen. Super hero video games are usually not very good. Take a look at Superman 64, for instance. Before the Arkham games for PlayStation 3 and XBox 360, this was the definitive blueprint for what a superhero game could be. With so many abilities and great settings, it’s hard to believe that most superhero games were duds.
6. Mickey Mouse in Castle of Illusion (Sega Genesis)
Say what you want about Mickey Mouse. Yes, his creator was a stubborn asshole, and yes he’s more of a symbol for corporate America than a full, complex character. However, there was a time when that wasn’t true. Mickey mouse used to be a very complex character with unique characteristics that set him apart from others. Of course, that’s not true any more. Throughout the ’70s and ’80s Disney was in a rut. However, the ’90s was a big comeback for the house of mouse, spawning a second coming of cartoon musicals like Aladdin and The Lion King, both spawning great 16 bit games of their own. Castle of Illusion proved that their iconic mouse wasn’t through just yet and still had more to offer. This side scrolling adventure is so full of wonder that stubborn ole’ Walt would be proud, if he knew what a video game was.
5. Taz in Escape From Mars (Sega Genesis)
The reason Taz in Escape From Mars is so good is because of a simple spin mechanic. Taz’s tornado spin is to Taz as Sonic’s spin charge is to Sonic the Hedgehog. It’s what jumping on turtles is to Mario. Because of Taz’ tornado spin, Taz can destroy enemies, bounce up walls and even run upside down. It’s a shame we couldn’t see this turn into a full video game series.
4. Ninja Turtles (Arcade Game)
“Winners Don’t Use Drugs.” Who doesn’t feel a bit nostalgic when they see that? This Ninja Turtles arcade game is one of many Ninja Turtles video games. The 1989 NES game was over thinking it. This classic arcade game is a simple side-scrolling beat ‘em up. No more awkward top down maps. No more gaps that are impossible to jump over. Just keep walking left and punch things. The Ninja Turtles arcade game proved once and for all that simplicity is sometimes better.
3. X-Men (Arcade Game)
Okay, okay, this one is a technicality. The X-Men arcade game was based on the pilot for X-Men: Pryde of the X-Men. The pilot was supposed to spawn a series, but never got passed the original pilot. Maybe it was the redundancy of having a title where “X-Men” appears twice. What were they thinking? Well, if anything good came out of it, it’s this classic arcade game. This game is pretty similar to the Ninja Turtles arcade game. In fact, the two are almost identical. However, I much prefer the different playable mutants such as Dazzler, Cyclops, Wolverine, Nightcrawler and Storm.
2. DuckTales (NES)
The success of DuckTales is attributed to the Capcom team behind the Mega Man series. Both games share Tokuro Fujiwara as a producer and Keiji Inafune. You play as scrooges McDuck, and you use your cane as a pogo-stick. In typical Mega Man fashion, the player can play through the levels in any order. Also, Yoshihiro Sakaguchi scores the game with his best work ever, even including the Mega Man series. Just listen to that space theme!
1. The Simpsons (Arcade Game)
And yet, another Simpson’s game. It’s odd that a simple sitcom about a suburban family can grow into something so unique. The Simpsons aren’t super heroes. They don’t have any special abilities. The brilliant writers of the show treated the yellow family as a sandbox of creativity, and consistency wasn’t an issue. In other words, the Simpsons are so wacky that they fit into the realm of video games without it feeling contrived. That’s why the world’s greatest cartoon series of all time has spawned some of the best Video Games of all time, including the three on this list. And for some reason, in the early 1990s, children much rather play as a suburban house wife with a vacuum than a superhero with super powers. That’s the power of the Simpsons.