This is the finals for the 3D years of video games, covering games roughly between 1995-99 including the Playstation and N64.
We’re down to our last two games, both absolute classics made by Nintendo.
Super Mario 64
The game that basically invented the 3D platformer as we know it. One of its major innovations was the free-moving camera that the player could control, a technique that was incorporated into nearly every later 3D game regardless of genre. The hub world and mission-based levels were also widely copied by future 3D platformers. Its bright, cheerful world combined with solid art direction made this game’s aesthetics hold up fairly well compared to others of its day. It was rereleased as a DS launch game and sold very well a second time, even though the DS’s awkward thumb stick really didn’t work well.
My favorite SM64 track:
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
Did anyone really doubt we’d be here? Ocarina of Time, upon release, was widely considered to be one of the best games ever made if not THE best, and its accolades have barely faded with time. This game is largely responsible for defining how action games would look in the new world of 3D. The z-targeting system and context-sensitive buttons were copied by countless other games. Hyrule Field may seem small and quaint to modern eyes, but at the time it was one of the largest explorable 3D areas most gamers had ever seen. Apart from the technical innovations, Ocarina of Time also has a memorable time-travelling narrative and a solid OST. It was re-released for Gamecube and later remastered for the 3DS.
My favorite LoZ: OoT track: