Top 5: Nintendo Consoles (Non-Handheld)

Posted: October 22, 2012 in Top 5s
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Growing up, I was all about Nintendo. I still prefer Nintendo to this day. That’s not to say I don’t like Sega, Sony, or Microsoft. But I feel that with Nintendo being a big part of my life for the better part of 25 years, I could do them justice with a Top 5 list of my favorite Nintendo consoles. Now, of course, this is purely subjective. This list isn’t to say “These are the best, in order, and what you think is wrong.” I will be doing a “Handheld-only” list sometime down the road. This will concentrate on the ones that required a TV to enjoy. I currently own all 5 of these consoles (only 1 of which I’ve never had to re-buy over the years, I’ll explain that later).

#5- Wii

The Wii is a fantastic system. Don’t take me putting it at #5 as anything bad. There are only 5 Nintendo consoles anyway. This just happens to be my least favorite of the 5. I still like it though. I was able to get my hands on one only about 3 weeks after it launched (and if anyone remembers these things coming out in 2006, you know how freaking impossible it was to find one). I had a blast playing Wii Sports and… and… well, I never really bought much for the Wii. I rented and borrowed a lot of games. There really wasn’t much for the Wii where I felt “OMG, I MUST HAVE THIS!” Some games I likely would have bought anyway, I received as gifts, such as New Super Mario Bros. Wii and Donkey Kong Country Returns. I think in the time I’ve owned a Wii I’ve actually purchased about 5 games. For me, this was a revolutionary console, without the revolutionary games I thought it would have.

#4- GameCube

Back when the GameCube was released my friends all made fun of it. They all made the same “lunch box” jokes that everyone else did. They badmouthed the mini-disks. I thought the GameCube had potential though. I wanted a GameCube so badly, I put a GameCube sticker over the logo on the front of my Nintendo 64 and wished it was a GameCube. None of them thought it could unseat the dominance of the PS2 (it wouldn’t, but they all eventually got GameCubes anyway). So when my 15th birthday came up, I had a decision to make. Did I want a Playstation 2 which had Grand Theft Auto III and was getting Grand Theft Auto Vice City in a few months? Or did I want to remain loyal to The House of Mario and hope the rumor I read in EGM about Vice City coming to GameCube was true? I went with the GameCube and Super Smash Bros. Melee, was sad about the false rumors, but still had fun. I don’t have quite the warm and fuzzy memories I do with other systems that I have with the GameCube, but I remember being a staunch defender of it with my friends, then hearing all those criticisms fly out the window when they all played Super Smash Bros. There are still some fantastic games I’ve yet to discover on this system and some games (such as Windwaker and Mario Kart Double Dash) command a higher price than the system itself in most used game stores.

#3- Super Nintendo

I was torn about what to put in this spot. I didn’t know whether what I had at #2 should go here at #3 and the SNES goes to #2. But I took a step back and thought about it. Even though this system was the 1st I could truly call my own (not counting the Game Boy), I didn’t necessarily “grow up” with it. I got my Super Nintendo for Christmas in 1995. I was completely excited for it. I loved it. I played the HELL out of it. The only problem is that the Nintendo 64 was just on the horizon and the SNES was soon to become old news. Despite the amount of time I played my Super Nintendo when I was a kid, I’ve done more SNES gaming as a “retro gamer” than I did when the SNES was the bees knees. The Nintendo 64 replaced my SNES only about a year-and-a-half after I got it. But the Super Nintendo still has some of my favorite games. Super Mario RPG introduced me to role-playing games. Kirby Super Star totally suckered me in with the whole 8-games-in-1 thing. This is still a very fun system to play.

#2- NES

I spent the first 13 years of my life with this guy. I have so many fond memories with the NES, some of which were covered in my 1st Top 5 article. I was devastated when it was stolen along with all my games in 2000. I think I would still have it today if not for that. I re-bought one a few years ago, and have tried to build back up the original collection and then some since. But my earliest memories of gaming involve the NES. Not only that, but some of my earliest memories in my entire life involve watching my dad play the Nintendo. My favorite game of all-time, Super Mario Bros. 3, calls this system home. The love-hate relationship I went through with Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!! started and ended on my Nintendo. Overall though, there is still one I hold above all others…

#1- Nintendo 64

Here it is. Not only my favorite Nintendo console, but probably my favorite console of all-time. I still have the very same Nintendo 64 that I got for my birthday in 1997. I don’t think I would ever let it go. Over 15 years I’ve spent with this machine. Loving it when I first played Super Mario 64. Hating it for 6 months when I was wishing I had a GameCube. There are so many great games on here and so many games I wish modern-day games would take a page from. I wish they made wrestling games today like they did with Wrestlemania 2000 and No Mercy. I wish they made action-adventure games like they did Super Mario 64. Mario Kart 64 is THE BEST Mario Kart. When I have a crazy idea for a created wrestler, I don’t boot up WWE ’12, I pop in WWF No Mercy. Pokemon Stadium 1 & 2 helped me get through some tough days when my dad and stepmom divorced. The rollercoaster of emotion one feels in just a few seconds in Ocarina of Time is amazing. One second, you feel sad when Saria stares longingly at Link as he leaves Kokiri Forest, then the very next moment you feel inspired by the panning shot of Hyrule Field as you take your first steps out of your home. When I got my 1st car and drove somewhere on my own for the 1st time, I felt just like Link stepping out onto Hyrule Field. The Nintendo 64 had this middle ground between when you had more ability to tell a story with graphics than the NES and SNES, but not so much that you could rely on voice acting in games on later consoles. There is a reason why when people talk about moments they love in Zelda games, a lot of it centers around Ocarina of Time cutscenes. The Nintendo 64 was the 1st party machine. It was the 1st time I could remember me and a bunch of friends all sitting on the couch and gaming. There was no “taking-turns.” Everyone could play Super Smash Bros. and Mario Kart and Wrestlemania 2000 and Mario Party at the same time. The Nintendo 64 was, and arguably still is, the ultimate dorm room machine. It is also my ultimate Nintendo machine. Nintendo may claim that the Wii and soon, the Wii U, will bring families and friends together, but for me, nothing does it better than the Nintendo 64.

So what do you think? How would you rank these consoles? Leave a comment or post something on my Facebook page, or tweet at me on Twitter!

As always, thanks for reading!

Comments
  1. […] Top 5: Nintendo Consoles (Non-Handheld) […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s