Japan is considered the hub of gaming. Japanese developers have churned out quality video games in numbers, and still continue to do so. While not all of the games have been successful, a number of games completely revolutionized the world of gaming.
Today we’re going to look at six of the most important games to have come out of Japan. Compiling this list was difficult task as we had to let go of some major titles. The list is entirely based on the impact a game had on the industry and the popularity they achieved. And also if they are still played today. So without much ado, let’s have a look at the top 6 most important Japanese games ever made:
First released in Japan in 1980, Pac-Man is one of the most famous games even today. Launched in May, the game reached the US in October and created a mass hysteria. The game was also turned into a successful television series, and also resulted in huge profits for the makers thanks to impressive merchandise sales. The game became so popular at one time in Japan that it resulted in a shortage of 100-yen coins in the country. But the craze was not limited to Japan, the game was raking in around 600 million dollars a year, which makes it the most successful video game of its era.
The basic design is simple and revolves around players trying to avoid villains and eating all the available power. The idea became so popular that it was picked by several other developers as well and resulted in inspired games like Ardu-Man, but no other game could match the success of Pac-Man.
2. Super Mario Bros. (1985)
Released in 1985, Super Mario Bros. is a game almost all of us have played at some point in life. The game introduced better storytelling and graphics and created a following within no time. Published by Nintendo, it was a sequel to the super successful Mario Bros., which came out in 1983. The game introduced two players, where one player controls Mario, and the other player controls his brother, Luigi. The game takes place in the Mushroom Kingdom as the player goes to rescue the damsel in distress.
The game resulted in several sequels, including Super Mario Bros: The Lost Levels, which is considered one of the most difficult games ever.
3. Final Fantasy
Owned by Square Enix, formerly known as Square, Final Fantasy, which came out in 1987, is now one of the most successful media franchises. The game was Sakaguchi’s last effort to give a boost to his company, hence the word ‘Final’ in the title, whereas the original title was supposed to be ‘Fighting Fantasy’. According to reports, the company was almost bankrupt trying to produce this game and it was a gamble that paid off, and how.
The game was originally packaged for NES, but the success made the developers release it for other gaming consoles as well. The story revolves around a team of four friends known as the Light Warriors. These four friends have special powers, and together they fight the evil forces to keep the world peaceful
4. Street Fighter II
Originally released in 1991, the game took the world by storm thanks to its incredible graphics and game play. This was not the first fighting game, but it presented fighting like never before. The game became so popular that Nintendo released a new controller designed around the .
The combo system and multiplayer option are some of the main reasons why this game became a success even bigger than its predecessors, including its own prequel, Street Fighter, which came out in 1987.
5. Sonic The Hedgehog (1991)
Sonic The Hedgehog came out in 1991 and stood neck to neck with Mario, which is a feat no other game could accomplish. The colors, greens and blues, mixed with Sonic’s terrific speed and a unique platform made this game a fan favorite. Many believe that this game is what kept Sega afloat amidst tough competition from Nintendo’s Mario.
6. Pokémon Red and Green
Everyone’s busy finding Pokemon these days thanks to Pokemon Go, but do you know that Japan is the birthplace of Pokemon? Also known as Pocket Monsters: Red & Green, the game came out in 1996 for the Game Boy. Developed by Game Freak, this is a role playing game which did not only make new records in Japan but spread worldwide like wildfire.
The Pokemon series is among some of the largest and most profitable gaming series ever and resulted in a number of spinoffs.
It won’t be entirely wrong to state that Japan is the Mecca of gaming. The titles that came out decades ago from this country are popular even today. So let us know what you think of these six games, and if you’d like to put another title in the list.
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