Lifestyle magazine GQ has put together a list of the top “100 greatest video games of all time” and we have some thoughts. While most of the games on the list have their rightful place on the list in general, their positions on said list are… questionable. Or, are at least worth thinking about in regards to overall subjectivity.
GQ’s list of experts are all indeed worthy of the title of expert, as the list of participants extends through various high-profile gaming journalists, streamers, and leadership of various video game developers and publishers. From Bungie, to PC Gamer, from Arkane Lyon, to Bioware, SEGA, Blizzard, Sony Santa Monica- the list goes on and on. What we are trying to say here is that despite our personal beliefs on what goes where on this list, it is hard to argue with that level of caliber from the gaming-sphere.
But let’s be real here- just because we like or even love a game does not mean it is worthy of being in the Top 100 of all time. In fact, some of us here at Geek Outpost love games that we know many of you would absolutely hate. Still, GQ’s list of 100 makes sense in terms of what is on the list but the top 10 are where we raised our eyebrows.
According to GQ and their whopping list of industry experts, here are the top 10 from the top 100 of their list:
10: Half-Life 2 (2004)
9: Dark Souls (2011)
8: Portal 2 (2011)
7: Metal Gear Solid (1998)
6: Mass Effect 2 (2010)
5: The Witcher III: Wild Hunt (2015)
4: Bloodborne (2015)
3: Tetris (1985)
2: The Last of Us (2013)
1: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (2017)
Each game among the top ten deserves to be on this list, make no mistake. And considering that a lot of the consideration for what made the top 100 included things like cultural impact, popularity among fans, and likely even units sold. The influence of each of these titles can be seen in the generations that followed, even with titles that were released in 2015 and later. However, it seems weird that Breath of the Wild made number one. Not that it needs any justification for being on the top 100 but in the top spot of all time? That seems like a stretch to us, though you may disagree. After all, this entire list, experts or otherwise, is purely subjective.
To us, the top games of all time usually consist of how they impacted our lives or shaped who we are, which may sound weird without explanation. For example, Halo: Combat Evolved, didn’t break the top 20, a shame for many a reason (it was edged out by Elden Ring at no.20 and Doom (1993) at no.19).
Growing up with the gaming genre of entertainment peaked for us between 2000 and 2010, at least in terms of how it helped us develop social skills and interact with our peers. For some, the first Halo inspired many sleepless nights accompanied by Mountain Dew, Doritos, and a seemingly endless supply of Hot Pockets. LAN parties were a thing of magic, not soon replaced by online gaming which stunted later generations’ ability to expand their social skills. What we are saying is, to us, Halo: Combat Evolved helped sculpt the young adults we were and aided us in becoming the social butterflies we became. But again, you may disagree and you may not have been a fan of the first-person shooter genre. To each their own.
Don’t get us wrong, our entire identities are not comprised of our experience with the first entry in the Halo franchise. But the point that we are making, is that gaming, for some, can be a way of life and not everyone’s tastes are the same. That is what makes video games so fantastic- the diversity and ability to bring us together or keep us company when we are alone.
A handful of top-tier titles didn’t make the list either, which left us curious. No Mega Man titles, no Borderlands titles, no Smash Bros., no Batman Arkham titles, no Diablo titles, no Assassin’s Creed or Prince of Persia. Even Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, easily one of the greatest games ever, didn’t make the cut in the top 100. Just as shocking, and perhaps one of the most egregious offenses here is not a single Kingdom Hearts title made the list either. All of this is quite honestly insane. You see what we are trying to say here? So many awesome titles, too many for us to list, didn’t make GQ’s 100. And that makes it hard to take this list seriously.
In any case, we were happy to see titles like Ocarina of Time and Pokemon Gold & Silver in the top 100, for without those, the entire list loses its merit and the so-called “experts” their credibility. But considering this is all purely a matter of preference, the list means very little in the grand scheme of things. Some games resonate with players, and some do not. For some of us, Tetris was just a game we played on the toilet back in the days of the fat gray Game Boy handheld, while others, Tetris became a means to making big bucks in the competition scene. Again, to each their own.
If the point we are trying to make by now isn’t clear, don’t worry. We are getting to it. Our opinions differ and we all disagree, to some extent, on what the top ten greatest games are, let alone the top 100. And we certainly question the choices in the top ten, especially, the number one spot. Breath of the Wild was and still remains a brilliant title, easily the best reason to get a Nintendo Switch and likely, the singular reason many got Nintendo’s flagship console of the modern era. But we just do not agree that it is the greatest game of all time. And that is okay! You may agree or you may feel differently. But the main thing we all agree on is that we love games, even if the games we love aren’t the same.