The Greatest Year in Gaming History

If you were to ask a group of experts in various entertainment segments to point to a single year as the greatest in medium’s history, you’d likely get a slew of different answers with different rational. For example, when it comes to film, there’s no clear agreement between critics and film buffs about a particular year you can point to as being objectively superior in terms of the releases compared to other candidates. Dates sometimes thrown around include 1993- the year Schindler’s List, Philadelphia, The Fugitive, The Piano, Jurassic Park, Groundhog Day, Sleepless in Seattle, Rudy, Cool Runnings and The Sandlot came out; 1984, which saw the release of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, The Karate Kid, Footloose, Gremlins, Terminator and Beverly Hills Cop; and even, oddly, some suggesting 2013, which saw the release of the likes of 12 Years a Slave, Dallas Buyers Club, and Frozen…

In fact, the closest you can get to a loose consensus amongst film critics in term of a definitive best year in film is 1939 which saw the release of Gone with the Wind, Of Mice and Men, Stagecoach, The Wizard of Oz, Ninotchka and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.

In contrast, when it comes to video games, while there’s always room for debate in these things and you’re never going to get universal agreement, critics and gaming historians tend to have a far more cohesive answer- usually pointing firmly to 1998 as being the greatest, or perhaps more aptly, most influential year for the medium as it stands today.

The reasons given vary somewhat, but the argument generally starts with the astonishing number of extremely influential games that were simultaneously successful from both a critical and commercial standpoint and how these games increased the perception of video games in the sphere of media and entertainment as a whole. It’s also pointed out that several titles that year launched some of the most influential game making companies from then ’til now. 1998 was also arguably the year where 3D interfaces finally matured to the point where they added to gameplay, instead of so often detracting.

So what games came out that year? To begin with we have The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, which is often put forth as one of the best video games ever made. Next up we have Resident Evil 2, which shattered the previous record for sales on opening weekend and spawned dozens…

Sasha Harriet

Sasha Harriet

As content editor, I get to do what I love everyday. Tweet, share and promote the best content our tools find on a daily basis.

I have a crazy passion for #music, #celebrity #news & #fashion! I'm always out and about on Twitter.
Sasha Harriet

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