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Top 10 Video Games of All Time: Rankings of 10 Best Video Games

top 10 video games

What are the top 10 video games of all time? Find out the rankings of the 10 best video games ever, from Super Nintendo, Sega, Xbox360, Wii & Playstation 1-3.

Video games are one of the most quickly evolving art forms in existence today.  The inventors, designers and publishers of video games can barely keep up with the explosions in technology that are occurring daily. 

As such, the history and evolution of video games can be traced through the decades by examining specific games that have revolutionized the industry.  These video games made substantial leaps, furthering the world of video games by their own innovations.

While it is very nearly impossible to pare the list of innovative and significant video games to a list of the top ten video games of all time, many avid video game players have attempted to do so.  There are thousands of such lists available on the internet and in gaming magazines or publications. 

The following video games are mentioned the most frequently in video gaming circles.  These video games are significant for their advanced contributions to the world of video games. 

The Top 10 Video Games

Most video games simply follow in the footsteps of giant and successful video games that have come before them.  Occasionally, however, a video game is released that doesn’t conform to any standards of the day and doesn’t rely on innovations previously made. 

These video games are the scene-changers.  These video games make a statement.  These video games help to ensure that the video game industry will never become obsolete or outdated.

The Top 10 Video Games of All Time

GoldenEye 007:

James Bond has always held captive his audience.  Bond fans worldwide love the stories of the daring spy and his unconventional ways. 

Bond’s relevance has never decreased over the decades, and when the film Goldeneye was released in the mid-1990s, the video game was not far behind.  Goldeneye 007 is the most influential first-person shooter game ever created.  Its single player mission campaign was far more intricate than any other game released before it. 

Goldeneye was also lauded for its amazing multiplayer mode where players navigated a terrain searching for opponents.  Goldeneye definitely merits a place on the top 10 video games list.

Street Fighter II:

This Capcom franchise revolutionized the boxing-style video games of the time.  The second game in the series, Street Fighter II allowed players to control a variety of different characters.  Each character was provided with a unique set of moves and special abilities. 

This concept was brand new to the video game world.  Capcom also changed the configuration of this game to operate under a six-button setup.  This allowed the video game player greater freedom and more options in a video game fight.  Street Fighter II had record sales and is considered one of the best early fighting games ever made.

Final Fantasy XII:

In 2006, Playstation teamed up with video game design team Square Enix to release a twelfth video game in its Final Fantasy franchise.  This version of Final Fantasy made some enormous innovations that would transform future video games.  The continuity and flow of the game was greatly improved. 

While previous Final Fantasy games required players to wait for battles to load in a new screen, Final Fantasy XII placed the battle scene in the same screen as the previous action.  Battles began immediately, offering a greater sense of realism to the game.  This method of fighting would be adopted by future video games.

Resident Evil 4:

Capcom released Resident Evil 4 to much fanfare.  Video game players had been anxiously awaiting the next installment of the fear-inducing franchise and were not disappointed. 

The legacy of Resident Evil 4 continues to be prevalent in video games today.  Previously, third-person shooter games had had difficulty in deciding where to place the “camera” so that crucial and exciting action wasn’t obscured by the hero’s body or the enemies’ bodies. 

Resident Evil 4 placed a point-of-view camera over the shoulder of the hero.  This innovation alone allowed players to view more of the critical action.  This camera placement is still mimicked in third person shooter games today.

Halo: Combat Evolved:

When Xbox released the first game in its Halo franchise, experts were forced to eat their words about the success of Microsoft’s video game venture.  Many thought the Xbox would not be able to compete with the other video game consoles available for mainstream gamers. 

Halo completely abolished those predictions. 

Halo proved to the world that video games should be considered an art form.  Many believe that Halo’s imagined world is one of the most complex and beautiful creations in video game history.  Halo producers created an entire universe filled with new races, new technology, new problems and a new history. 

By manipulating colors, shapes and lines, Halo’s video game designers were able to create cultures for its races.  The enemies in the Halo game are not mindless monsters: they are alien peoples with their own unique histories.

Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time:

This Legend of Zelda game was released in 1998 for the Nintendo 64 game console.  This game is considered by many to be the highest-ranked video game of all time. 

Its innovation in 3D character and scenery design was unmatched by any predecessors.  Many experts give special credit to the beautiful rendering of the characters’ faces.  In the early years of three dimensional video games, characters faces were the most difficult image to render accurately. 

Because the face is not made of angles but of smooth planes and curves, artists had difficulty portraying them with realism.  The Legend of Zelda characters were highly advanced and very realistic for the time.

Super Mario World:

Nintendo secured itself as a leader in the video game world for decades with the design and production of its biggest franchise: Super Mario World.  The premise is slightly silly: an Italian-American plumber must fight mushrooms, toothed plants, turtles, bats and other creatures as he navigates across a two-dimensional screen. 

Mario can walk, run and jump and uses the sewer pipes to enter fantastic new levels and bonus rounds.  While this premise sounds a little goofy, Super Mario World was one of the first video game worlds created entirely from the designers’ minds. 

Immediately after the game was released, Nintendo began merchandising and expanding this franchise with lunchboxes, action figures, and even an animated television show.  Nintendo proved that video games could permeate every aspect of a child’s life.

Grand Theft Auto:

When Grand Theft Auto was first released in 1997, parents released a collective gasp of disapproval while teenagers released a collective squeal of delight. 

Grand Theft Auto proved to the video game world that kids could enjoy being the villain as much as being the hero.

With bank robberies, holdups, and other criminal missions, Grand Theft Auto was one of the first video games to glorify the bad guy.


The game with the misshapen blocks that fell steadily onward revolutionized the puzzle-type video games of the day.  Many consider Tetris to be the first video game that could truly be considered “addicting.”

Tetris could be found in pizza parlors, arcades, and university student centers across the entire nation.  The concept of a scoreboard that allowed users to create a legacy also gained popularity with Tetris.

Super Mario Kart:

Nintendo changed the face of video games again when it released Super Mario Kart.  Nintendo is credited with the invention of the go-kart racing style video game.  Super Mario Kart also allowed users to operate characters from many different Nintendo games. 

Pitting characters from different games against one another was a successful innovation by Nintendo that has been emulated hundreds of times.

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