1. Super Metroid – Super Nintendo 1994
This game is perfect. Anyone who ever wants to create video games for a living should play this at least 3 times. Super Metroid was the pinnacle of in house,16-bit game development. It is a sequel that brought the overworld to life, made bosses feel larger than life, and cemented Samus Aran on the map as one of the most powerful gaming characters. 90% of my compliment made on a Metroid game’s art direction, music composition, and gameplay listed behind Super Metroid was done in Super Metroid before that game, and if not, Super Metroid did it better. This was the most acclaimed 2-D platformer for a long time and, not long afterwards, it and the release of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night defined a genre of gameplay that has influenced the greatest and weakest of indie and AAA developers alike. Not to mention is also established a genre of competitive play style in speed running and sequence breaking, that is now observed by gamers as though it were an Olympian spectator sport, except now is done for charity and fundraising through programs like Games Done Quick and Extra Life. Metroid saves lives. How about that?