Exclusives are critical to the success of a console, generations can be won and lost on the strength of a console’s exclusives. There have been some pretty incredible ones over the years, in fact some of the greatest games of all time have been exclusives. With that being said, here’s a look at some of our favourite exclusive franchises of all time.
Perhaps the most well known name in gaming. Launched in 1985 for the NES, the Super Mario franchise has spanned 30 titles, and sold over 310 million copies. Not only have we had the main saga of Super Mario titles, there’s been countless spinoffs including Mario Kart, Mario Party, Yoshi, Wario and Luigi.
The Legend of Zelda
Introduced a year after Super Mario, The Legend of Zelda has proved to be another huge money maker for Nintendo. Across 19 games there may not have been a huge variety in plot, but there has been a consistent stream of excellent titles, including several games considered to be contenders for the greatest game of all time.
Nintendo’s take on sci-fi was another huge success for the company. Released in the same year as Zelda, Metroid took the adventure format and put it in a darker, sci-fi universe. We’re still waiting on the next game in the series though, after Nintendo cancelled development of the upcoming Metroid Prime 4 and restarted with Retro Games at the helm.
God of War
It might not be as long lived as some of the Nintendo titles we’ve covered, but the God of War series has produced some genuinely incredible games. From the original all the way through to the recent reboot we’ve travelled with Kratos through both Greek and Norse mythology and hopefully there’s more to come.
The action adventure title that follows treasure hunter and descendant of Francis Drake, Nathan Drake across a series of epic adventures. The series has become known for its incredible cinematic set pieces, story and beautiful locations. As well as the 4 main series games we were given an extra 3 spin-offs, which have largely all been well received.
Ratchet & Clank
Created by Insomniac (who have had some success with another Playstation exclusive recently) Ratchet & Clank is a 3rd person action platformer. While there hasn’t been much from the series in recent years, the early days on the PS2 and early PS3 were largely successful and the franchise is one of the most fondly remembered of all time.
A hugely successful franchise, Halo managed to pull off the rare feat of being not only an exceptional single player game, but also revolutionising the online arena too. The premise lead to an exciting story featuring super-human soldiers battling aliens with an array of land and air vehicles, what’s not to like? Add in the ability for players to create their own multiplayer maps and game modes and you’ve got almost endless possibility for enjoyment.
Gears of War
Another shooter, this time pitting humans against a different enemy in the Locust Horde. This was a more adult take on the shooter genre, putting players in a 3rd person environment armed with rifles with in built chainsaws. Much like Halo, Gears of War pulled off the combination of single and multi player brilliantly, allowing players to play story missions cooperatively, as well as battling hordes and fighting each other in PVP game modes.
When it comes to racing simulators, there aren’t many places to look other than Forza and Gran Turismo. The reason Forza excels on this list are due to the success the franchise has had with its spin-off series, Forza Horizon. Covering both serious racing simulation and a more arcade style with an open world Forza has produced several excellent games, scoring below 85 on Metacritic just once.
So those are some of our favourite console exclusive franchises of all time, have we missed any? Be sure to let us know in the comments down below. Thanks for reading.