While adages like one man’s trash is another man’s treasure are something you’re going to want to keep in mind for this list, there are video games where at least the majority of us can agree they were kind of a slam dunk.
Whether because they had phenomenal stories, mechanics that felt oh so good to engage with, fundamentally changed our perception of what video games could be, or a combination of all of the above, here are the games we’re comfortable putting in the ‘just about perfect’ category.
While this list could easily be much longer, we’ve collected ten games that everyone almost universally agrees knocked it out of the park. If you haven’t played any of these, that’s something you’re almost definitely going to want to fix.
10: Age Of Empires II: The Age of Kings
Now, this list is collected from a general consensus gathered from your thoughts all over the internet, it’s not my personal top ten. That said if your childhood was anything like mine I bet it saw a lot of Age of Empires II.
Age of Empires II came out in 1999, the real-time strategy game was made by Ensemble Studios and published by Microsoft. It’s pretty universally agreed to be one of the greatest video games of all time so I think we’re getting off on the right foot here. The game called on players to build towns, gather resources, and defeat enemies to cross off relevant victory conditions, all the while advancing through each of four ages. You’d play as one of 13 refreshingly different civilisations and expansion packs would add even more.
Aside from being responsible for educating a generation of young gamers about history and warfare, the game was a hit for a multitude of reasons.
As far as improvements upon the original, the list was innumerable. The sounds are iconic, the look is classic, the multiplayer hugely compelling, and the controls and UI functioned perfectly to serve the strategy format. From its deep town-building mechanics to its random map generator, AOE2 is a hugely influential game in the strategy space and, honestly, it’s still fun, which is saying something for a game over two decades old.