Updated: Feb 19
What games have struck a chord with our community?
As Casual Game Critic continues to grow and evolve, one thing is strikingly clear. One of, if not the, greatest strengths we have is in our community. Today this lives mostly over on the Casual Game Community Facebook group where interaction, support and just general great conversation about all things gaming is happening.
This is why we want to keep our community close to us and in some ways show you guys off and share your hot takes each month right here on site. (All submissions have given permission to post their entry and credit their FB title)
This month I reached out and asked the community to “Name your favourite game and give a small paragraph on why it's so important to you.” And the response was staggering. And amazingly practically no overlap in titles! Goes to show the versatility of our favourite medium.
Check out the picks below and comment below the article if you too have a suggestion or just want to build off one of the suggestions.
The Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time
I fell in love, that love remains infinite. As a kid, I was lucky enough to have older family members with gaming interests, I grew up with the Spectrum, Commodore and Amiga as well as the obligatory Gameboy!! I liked gaming, but nothing ever had a hold on me like when I got a gift of an N64 with Ocarina of Time. I set it up on a terrible tv on my bedroom floor, powered up...and got lost. From the first moment the music hit I was head over heels. The gameplay, the story, the mini games...everything was perfect. Everything still is perfect! It's ageless! True gaming Nirvana.
Darksiders. Not only is it a great series of games with a great story but there is a massive amount of christian, pagan and multiple religious stories and characters involved. The game covers angels, demons, Celtic figures as well as getting creative with variations of other religious figures. For me the original game was epic not only for the gameplay, quests and puzzles but also for the artistry and storytelling involved. The second in the series incorporated massive customisation of the main character to a level not normally seen in games at the time. Haven't played the newest two yet but am looking forward to them.
BioShock. It was the first game I really fully played through on my own (in my adult years) it reignited my love of gaming and blasting the shit out of things. I loved the story line and the twists and turns, the beautiful areas to explore. And of course I love "would you kindly"
Martin William Mason
Hands down, it’s World of Warcraft. It’s the game that kept me from losing my mind during a recession in 2007. It’s the company I worked for for 8 years. I’m named on the credits of four expansions. Earned my sword for meritorious service. And my wife creates art for Blizzard to this day. All thanks to World of Warcraft.
The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim, I just love the game in its raw form and a love that just grows stronger each time I play it, it was the first game I’d played in years that really immersed me, I love taking off on foot across the map discovering random locations and hidden side quests, while also totally losing myself picking flowers to make potions I’ll never use, no matter how many play through you do none are ever the same, it’s a fantastic game for gamers of all level, it’s game play is so simply beautiful and story just draws you in. Not to mention the simply stunning scenery, I find it so relaxing and as a parent it’s a great escape for me during my downtime to just get totally immersed and lose myself.
Darren Lee Mangan
Mass Effect trilogy (I don't see them as 3 games ) The story immersive and the characters were so well done. The whole experience from start to finish was a masterpiece and I'll fight anyone that says otherwise XD
Well I wasn't sure between Final Fantasy 7 and Ocarina of Time but Conor summed that up nicely, so I'll go FF7. My bro bought the game and quite frankly I wasn't sure I'd be interested, I was about 10 and thought tomb raider sounded way cooler so was disappointed he went with ff7, low and behold when he boot that baby up and I saw the CGI opening followed by that awesome bombing mission I was sold. Quite a jump from saving peach from browsers clutches on SNES let me tell ya
Turn based combat confused me at first and I couldn't understand how the backgrounds looked so real! Yesteryear me was filled with blissful ignorance of how technology worked so prerendered backgrounds were the most impressive thing I'd ever seen. I credit ocarina of time and ff7 in particular for really igniting my passion for gaming. It wasn't just that they were fun it's much more than that, they were a completely new experience for me far removed from anything else at the time. Plus, fun fact, in school I was behind in English class and hated reading but ff7 and the RPG’s on ps1 helped my English come along nicely
I'm stuck between Spider-Man on PS4 and Arkham City. Both massive open world games on 2 of my favourite heroes. The fighting style in both is amazing. The story in Spider-Man especially was out of this world.
They're both 2 of a very small number of games that I have gone back to and started completely over again
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt and it's expansions. When I first played Wild Hunt on my old laptop, I had the graphics turned up too high and it was clunky so I closed it and didn't touch it for another year.
It was one of those Steam discount purchases that I knew people enjoyed but I was convinced it had clunky mechanics (it was just lag)
When I was bored, I decided out of the blue to turn the graphics down to medium and see how it would run. Immediately my experience was transformed and became probably the game I have enjoyed most of all time.
Over 250 hrs of play later and I am considering picking it up again for a 3rd time. I HAVE to leave room for Cyberpunk 2077 however and I have a lot of games that have barely got a look in.
Even so, I'm so close to giving it a blast for old times. I wish they'd make another!
Robáird Ó Túama
Borderlands 2. I still remember the first time me and Colm De Baróid played borderlands 1, so excited to see what it was. We gave up after maybe 20 minutes and left it for so long that the sequel was almost out when we went back. Playing BL2 was one of the most rewarding experiences of my gaming life. Everything about the game, from the music to the absolute chaos of gameplay to the NPC’s, each of whom has at least one memorable quote, pandora was magic. Even when you killed the bad guys, they had comments, one guy even says as he dies that he had almost finished his comic book collection. Throw in possibly the greatest villain in video game history and you have arguably the greatest game ever made. A game that i bought twice on the 360, once on the PS3 and again on the Xbox One, and played to platinum on all of them (except the one so far).
Bioshock Infinite or FarCry 5, brain just went into meltdown . However, I would have to go with Bioshock Infinite, beautiful story, amazing colourful graphics, quirky sense of humour, heartfelt characters, very intense action, wonderful soundtrack and class DLCs
The Darkness, a little hidden gem on PS3 and XB360 dark, dreary, funny and extremely violent, all boiled down to a well told, well-acted and cohesive story.
The Monster Hunter series. These games are so different to most games in the fact that all creatures you fight feel so natural. The game prides itself on the fact everything in the world is alive and there and would be even if you as the player weren't doing anything. Plus if you take monster hunter world as a example it is proof that can be on its 5th generation of the series and still make every new player at home. Plus, they treat the community with such respect. They dont do crazy amounts of dlc it's just the one major expansion then title updates bringing in new things. Yes, it does have its share of micro-transactions but that is purely things like hairstyles and poses and they aren't even crazy expensive
Michael O Callaghan
Dark Souls (impossible to pick just one). The game has fantastic gameplay and creative level design but the best thing about it is how rewarding it is after you stick with it after dying a million times. The game makes you think about what's the best strategy for different foes and the game makes you use your items.
Gerard O Toole
A lot of love for my gaming history, but one that I don't see mentioned above, is Goldeneye. (if it was mentioned then, whoops )
We're talking about a game that brought a lot of kids together to form tight bonds of friendship. Albeit, geographically convenient friends. It had to be geographically convenient as The up to four of you would plug in, taking your own controller from home, probably (for luck like) and meet at a friend's house and all plug in to that sweet Nintendo, on a 17" screen and sit around scrambling for a golden gun. As ye all gang up on the smallest mate and ruin his Saturday morning, as the other three race towards greatness. No one picked Jaws, headshots were too easy, the cool kids knew better than to pick Bond, so they picked Trevelyan. Those that weren't great picked Odd Job and the others either picked Boris (coz he's invincible) or Natalya (cause puberty)
I have lasting friendships nearly twenty years later over that game. We may not see each other as much but when we do, we still talk about sitting around that screen, that golden gun, and the absolute joy we felt killing one another.
Just for the absolute ridiculously fun aspect, it's gotta be Simpsons Hit and Run. It was the first game I had on PS2 but sadly my PS2 didn't come with a memory card and I had to constantly restart the game over, every day for about a year. The game was just a perfect mesh of GTA style but in a light-hearted way. Getting to the Halloween chapter at the end of the game is literally one of my most proudest moments. It took me 14 hours of nonstop playing (no memory card) and usually had a limit on how much I could play
While I may never be able to give a concrete answer as to what my favourite game is due to it constantly changing, I believe Persona 5 Royal is definitely the one that stands out to me in this very moment. And while I could talk about some of its amazing aspects, the like of it's turn based combat, incredible style or it's sweet, sweet music. It's characters and confidant system is its strongest feature and it's most impactful to me, I could relate to aspects of certain characters that hit home, but I also saw parts of my friends as well as I hung out with the cast, it developed such amazing characters that brought back some form of reality that has been missing during these trying times of covid19 and it helped me feel like I was connect with my friends in real life in certain ways. And nothing else has ever done something like that!
Some fantastic choices from the community, but this is only a part of the story. If you'd like to see the full conversation check out the original community post here.
All images taken from IGDB
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