Monday, 29 December 2014

Games of the Year - 2013

Remarkably (for my standards), I've now posted reviews of over 400 games here at Red Parsley, covering many systems and genres, popular and obscure titles alike. I've still barely even scratched the surface of most of these of course, and my 'to do' list contains well over 400 more titles, but I've still played a lot of good and bad games over these (almost) five years. Here is a list of the finest examples from my fourth year of blogging. Only seems like yesterday that I reviewed some of these...

10. Ghost'n Goblins by Capcom (1985) - Arcade

I actually played Ghouls'n Ghosts before this but I'd heard it was meant to be just as almost-impossibly tough. As it turned out, it wasn't too bad in that regard - it was still a big challenge but not as frustrating as expected, and I consequently enjoyed it a lot. Sir Arthur's first adventure remains a top arcade game. (full review here)

9. Robocco Wars by IGS (1991) - NES

Overall, I haven't had the best luck with my 'Random Game' feature and this Famicom obscurity remains the best game I've discovered as part of the feature. It's a strange game that alternates between platformy/shooty stages and scrolling shmup stages but it works really well. Great fun, this one. (full review here)

8. TRAZ: Transformable Arcade Zone by Cascade Games (1988) - Commodore 64

I didn't know much about this one but readers kept suggesting it to me so I finally checked it out... and found one of the most varied and interesting brick breakers I'd ever seen! It takes a bit of getting used to, what with multiple bats on various sides of the screen and all, but its quality is never in doubt. (full review here)

7. The Need For Speed by Pioneer Studios (1994) - 3DO

There weren't many 3DO games that not only showed how powerful the system was but were also superb to play as well, but one that definitely did both was The Need For Speed. It really was a revolutionary driving game, both in terms of its aesthetics as well as its realistic, engaging play. A true landmark title. (full review here)

6. Wani Wani World by Kaneko (1992) - MegaDrive/Genesis

If I'm a specialist on any console it would be the MegaDrive but here was not only a game I hadn't seen before but one of my favourite types as well! It's actually kind of like an update of Space Panic but, aside from looking much nicer, it's also stranger, rather less frustrating, and huge fun to play as well. (full review here)

5. Space Taxi by Muse Software (1984) - Commodore 64

Like Traz, this is another C64 game I'd not heard of until it was recommended by a reader, but it didn't take long to make its impression on me. As the name may imply, the object is simply to ferry passengers around with your flying taxi, and doing so makes for one of the most addictive games I've played. (full review here)

4. Treasure Island Dizzy by Oliver Twins (1987) - ZX Spectrum

Yeay, Dizzy! His first adventure was fantastic, especially for a mere budget game, but this follow-up was the game that really made him famous, and with good reason. It was mighty unforgiving but the urge to see the next screen was always strong, and the appealing graphics didn't hurt either. A classic. (full review here)

3. Super Star Soldier by Hudson Soft (1991) - PC Engine

The original Star Soldier wasn't a particularly wonderful game but this sequel quickly became one of the Engine's most highly regarded shmups, and is probably my second favourite only after Gunhed (to which it is quite similar) thanks to its great graphics and sound, tons of weapons, and varied, frenetic stages. (full review here)

2. Beetle Adventure Racing by Paradigm Entertainment (1999) - Nintendo 64

I suppose it's wrong to pre-judge a game but I expected this to be some crazy party game with no real lasting appeal. What I found, however, was one of the finest racing games on the N64! It isn't a serious game at all but the long courses with lots of short-cuts are fantastic and up to four players can join in too. (full review here)

1. Star Fighter by Fednet / Krisalis (1995) - 3DO

Originally released for the Archimedes of all machines, this free-roaming, mission-based shooter amazed me with its smooth 3D graphics and superb soundtrack when I first played it but I soon discovered a game of surprising depth as well. There are still few games I've spent more time with than this. (full review here)

Best of 2014 coming soon!


  1. Any post that includes a mention of Wani Wani World deserves a big thumbs up from me. I love that game--and the game that inspired it, The Berlin Wall, of course.

  2. Haha, yeah, that's been on my 'to do' list for about 3-4 years now :P I'll get around to it eventually!