Video games are an art-form. It is time to look back at some of gaming’s most memorable moments.
With so many amazing and memorable moments in gaming it sure is hard to pick a select few. This list covers 19 memorable moments in video game history… So without further a-do, let’s get too it!
19. Half Life 2 – Getting the ‘Gravity Gun’
The ‘Gravity Gun’ is a tractor beam-type weapon that quickly becomes an invaluable tool in Gordon’s arsenal. Using the gravity gun in Half-Life even now blows my mind. Using gravity in such a way was a fairly new concept at the time and a number of games have been influenced by the success of these physics-based weapons.
18. Shenmue – Introduction Iwao Hazuki’s death
Other than the search for sailors, everyone that has experienced Shenmue will never forget the epic introduction to the game. In the intro, Lan Di delivers a killing blow to Ryu’s father in order to find the ‘Dragon Mirror’. Lwao dies in the arms of his son Ryo telling him “Forgive me for leaving you alone. Your friends, keep friends, those you love, close to you”. An amazing introduction to the series. Since then, Ryo has sworn vengeance on Lan Di for Lwao’s murder… A story which is still yet to be concluded.
Be sure to follow Shenmue 3 here.
“17. Pac Man & Ms. Pac Man meet
Ms. Pac-Man is the second game in the Pac-Man series, released in arcades in February 1982.Ms. Pac-Man introduced a female character, cutscenes, four different mazes, more colourful graphics, and several gameplay changes. It quickly became one of the most popular arcade games of all time.
The three cutscenes follow the developing relationship between the original Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man (from when they first meet to having a stork drop off their baby). Each cutscene introduced a new level… The baby served as an introduction to Jr. Pac Man.
Due to the popularity of the game (and the fact the game was not made by, endorsed by or even allowed by Namco at the time) the two meeting was very significant… That and cutscenes were unheard of in arcade games such as Pac Man at the time.
16. The Last Of Us – Joel lies to Ellie
The ‘Last Of Us’ gives us a great post apocalyptic story throughout. However, to make a potential vaccine toward the end Ellie would most likely have to die. Joel didn’t want to take the risk of Ellie losing her life for no reason and saved her. He states to her in the car that the Fireflies were no longer looking for a vaccine which is not true.
If he had told her the truth she probably would have gone back to the Fireflies to finish her mission and die so they could potentially extract the cure from her. Even if Joel had managed to prevent her from leaving she would have despised him for taking away her chance to redeem her guilt. This would have made it very difficult to maintain a healthy relationship with her.
15. Bioshock – Would you kindly?
Bioshock gave us one of gaming’s greatest twists, the phrase “Would you kindly” is a phrase that was programmed to function as a trigger for the post-hypnotic suggestions programmed into the mind of the protagonist Jack.
14. Resident Evil – Meeting the first zombie
Resident Evil gives us many moments to remember from zombie dogs smashing through windows in a mission to kill you… to moments like, I don’t know becoming a Jill Sandwich?
But, The most memorable moment, for me at least was meeting the first zombie. After a short and fairly scary cut scene Resident Evil throws you in at the deep end… Tight space, unable to move and an in-your-face foe that absorbs handgun bullets.
In this moment Resident Evil teaches players that it will show them no mercy.
13. Mortal Kombat – Finish Him!“Toasty!”
When it comes to finishing moves, Mortal Kombat doesn’t hold back. There is nothing more satisfying than performing a fatality in Mortal Kombat… Then performing another… And another. You get the jist!
12. Metal Gear Solid – Breaking the fourth wall – Psycho Mantis
Metal Gear Solid constantly breaks the fourth wall. From finding MGS gaming magazines to ‘Master Miller’ warning the player to use the bathroom frequently, so as to not miss one of the game’s cutscenes.
The most memorable moment however, can be no other than meeting ‘Psycho Mantis’ for the first time.
Famously, during the player’s battle with Mantis, he reads the memory card commenting on some of the games you may have previously played and, on the amount of times you have saved the game. If using a Dualshock controller Mantis well speak to the player telling him to ‘move it with your mind’.
Interestingly, Mantis also has a number of attacks that will break the fourth wall. As an example, Mantis will change the player’s screen to a black screen reading “HIDEO” (instead of VIDEO) in the top corner. He can also make ‘Meryl’ shoot at the screen.
On top of all this Campbell tells Snake that he must physically change the game controller’s port on the console to prevent Mantis from “reading their mind.” This must be done to beat the boss.
11. Final Fantasy 7 – Sephiroth kills Aerith
Few moments live up to this death scene. As a central character in the game, Aerith’s death is in my opinion the most notable event in the history of the series due to its shocking and unexpected introduction, not to mention the soundtrack and scenery.
Occurring at the end of the game’s first part, this scene acts to motivate Cloud to further pursue his nemesis, Sephiroth.
10. John Marston & Arthur Morgan’s death.
I couldn’t mention Arthur’s Morgan’s death without including John’s.
Playing though Red Dead Redemption is like playing through a really good Netflix series. Every main cutscene plays a great part in progressing the story and building up to big moments. Both Arthur and John’s death scenes are beautifully made. You really have to play the game to get the full experience.
9. Super Mario Bros. – World 1-1
‘The princess is in another castle!’
…Probably one of the most well known phrases in video game history… I couldn’t include Mario without including that phrase. However, I believe one of the most memorable video game moments is not this… but the first level. It doesn’t matter how long you leave Mario alone, you will always remember the first level. With the iconic music, the sound of collecting coins and the simple (but challenging) Mario gameplay we all know and love.
8. Pokémon – Choosing your first Pokémon
Bulbasaur (Grass)… Squirtle (Water) or Charmander (Fire). This is the choice that you where presented with within the very first Pokémon journey. Each Pokémon was different and once your choice was made there was no going back… also, there was no other way of getting the other two Pokémon in game. (Not without including cheats or trading anyway)
You never forget choosing your first Pokémon, Personally I chose water (and continue to choose water)… I mean come on… it’s Squirtle!
7. Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 – No Russian
From Pokémon to Terrorism… ‘No Russian’ is a controversial level in Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. Here, the player participates in a mass shooting at a Moscow airport to gain the trust of a Russian terrorist group.
Because of the levels graphic nature / content the player is not required to kill any civilians and can skip the level altogether without any penalties. ‘No Russian’ was subject to censorship in international versions of the game. In fact, it was removed entirely from Russian versions.
6. The Walking Dead Season 1 – Clem and Lee say goodbye
It’s a real shame that Telltale games are no more, especially after creating a number of great masterpieces.
Each tale told took the player on a journey, each decision made affected the story in one way or another. One moment in The Walking Dead Season 1 involves a decision where neither outcome is good. After spending the entire season with Clem and Lee a relationship is formed.
In the final episode you are left with 3 choices, each one as sad as the other:
Have Clementine shoot Lee: Lee convinces Clementine to shoot him, optionally citing the time he allowed to Jolene to die to avoid becoming a walker, confesses he shot Duck out of mercy and it was hard or because his own fear of becoming one. (Determinant) Clementine cries heavily, stepping back. The screen fades to black as she shakily pulls the trigger.
Tell Clementine to leave: Lee convinces Clementine to leave, telling her there’s no time or that she shouldn’t have to do such a thing. (Determinant) Clementine goes to leave, looking back one last time as Lee succumbs to the infection and dies. The screen fades to black.
Do nothing: Saying nothing results in Clementine making the decision herself, basing it on the players’ choices and how they treated Clementine over the series.
5. Halo – The Flood
I loved the first Halo. In fact, Halo was what spurred me to get an Xbox Original to begin with. When first discovering The Flood in Halo: Combat Evolved it is one major plot twist. The discovery changes the game for the latter of it and adds a sense of horror. Hell, There is nothing more scary than playing legendary to see 3000 red dots coming at you on the radar!
4. Super Mario 64 – Looking into the light
In Super Mario 64 a beam of light would shine down from the ceiling in Peach’s castle after collecting 10 stars… Of course, back then no one knew what triggered this event. Staring into the light would warp Mario to a level in which you can unlock the wing hat! This level and the fact not many people knew that 10 stars triggered the event made the game seem more unpredictable and alive in what was already a revolutionary title.
3. Metroid – Samus’s female reveal
Back in 1986, one of the biggest shocks in gaming history occurred… In a world where female protagonists were scarce came Samus. Upon completion of Metroid Samus took off her helmet to reveal a female.
Interestingly, It was revealed that Samus wasn’t always going to be female… Metroid co-creator Yoshio Sakamoto explains:
‘When we were almost done with the development of Metroid, one of our staffers casually suggested, ‘Why don’t we make Samus Aran a female character to surprise the player?’ Back then I thought it was a nice idea, but I couldn’t foresee what a huge impact this would have on the future of the franchise.’
2. Gears Of War 2 – Dom’s Wife
One of my favourite moments in gaming happens to also be one of the most heart breaking. After years of being missing, Dom finally finds his wife in a Locust prison camp… At 1st everything appears ok however it eventually reveals that she had been “processed” and severely tortured. Dom was forced to euthanize her to end her suffering, something he never recovered from.
1. Zelda: Ocarina Of Time – Pulling out the Master Sword
‘The legendary blade of time resides in the Temple of Time. The Master Sword is the final key to the sacred realm that holds the Triforce, and only the one worthy of the title of the Hero of Time can draw it…’
When Link pulls the Master Sword out of its pedestal, he is too young to wield it and therefore travels seven years into the future. In the future there are some massive differences as Ganon has conquered Hyrule. This is a big change to the game and comes as a twist to first time players. Pulling the master sword for the first time is something that can’t be forgotten… Hell Ocarina of time is a game that can’t be forgotten!
Bonus bin – The memory problem
Nowadays consoles and PC’s have a ton of options when it comes to memory size… However, games are getting bigger and I am sure everyone has had to uninstall a game they don’t want to uninstall just to install another at some point. That was the beauty of older consoles, the ability to pop the game in and be on your way…
This did come at a price depending on the console… Some consoles, for example the PlayStation 1 and 2 had no built in memory. Therefore without a memory card the only way of ‘saving’ your game without the use of passwords was to leave the console on overnight / while you were away… A great way to overheat consoles and a very memorable moment for older gamers.
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