Classic Games you would give as gifts today

Video Game Stocking

True story, I was in a Kay Bee toy store several years before they closed and was looking for some discounted games. An older woman comes in and asks about the Playstation2 which was brand new at the time. The guy behind the counter tells her the Atari Jaguar would be much better liked for her son and showed her a wonder bundle of games and told her he could give them all to her for one special price.

Well, if you know anything about the Atari Jaguar you know any kid would not want that over a brand new PS2. Now yes, I could have said something, but I was an evil teenager at the time and I was hoping to be there after the holidays when she would have to return it in a panic.

I was thinking about that story the other day and with the holidays almost here I thought about great games that would make great gifts today. Now of course if you gave most people an old game instead of something new like Call of Duty or Skyrim they would freak. However, what if it would be appreciated, what classic game would you proudly give as a gift?

Sonic 2

Sonic 2

For me this was Sonic perfection, the level design the music and everything in-between made this a great game. Even today it is the type of game you can load up and enjoy a quick run through. It may not have the graphics of today, but people are liking Sonic Generations and its look back to classic Sonic so as a retro stocking stuffer this game would be received well.

Super Mario RPG

Super Mario RPG

When you mix the fun world of Mario with the RPG nature of the Squaresoft games you get an adventure that stands the test of time. Super Mario RPG had it all, a good storyline, great characters, wonderful music and a fun battle system with boss fights and secret areas and the game was pretty long to boot. Compared to later games like Final Fantasy 7, it may seem lacking, but in its time it was ahead of its day and led to many great Paper Mario games.

Final Fantasy 7

final-fantasy-7

Speaking of FF7, most people crown this game the king of the series and even though you might get tired of seeing people pretend they are Sephiroth or horrible cosplay of Tifa, the game itself was a masterpiece. Again we have the perfect combination of story, characters, gameplay and music and all were rated five stars. Many gamers still want a remake and not the one on the PSP. No doubt the painted ground and other outdated graphics might look strange to today’s gamer, but for a classic game this must rank as one of the all-time greats.

Super Castlevania

Super Castlevania

How many of you have played this in some form in the last year or so. For many it is like going to church, you do it once or twice a year. Super Castlevania is one of those games that every once in a while you have to play through because of how fun it was and I have to toss  STON in there as well because they were both so well done that even with outdated graphics the game is still awesome. The point is that great games are great games regardless of their outdated look. Castlevania was fun to play and it did not matter if that bat looked more like a dust bunny or that the whip was seriously pixelated. Once you saw someone playing it or a video or even a mention you most likely loaded it up yourself. Come on, you know right now you are thinking about it.

Stocking Stuffer

Now obviously there are a ton of great games I missed, but that is for you to tell us. In fact we will make it a contest. Tell us what classic game would be worth giving as a gift this holiday season and the best written one will be featured in an article and you will win a prize. Detail is the key here and the better you make your case the better your chance to win. Even if you do not want to participate in the contest we want to know which game you think should be on this list.

Virtual Boy (JAPAN)

Nintendo Virtual Boy System
Nintendo Virtual Boy System

Known too many in the gaming industry as the red menace the Virtual Boy or VR-32 was released to America during the summer of 1985.  The overall goal was to bring a true 3D gaming experience to the Nintendo fanbase one that could be portable and stationary. One of the first problems was the price, retailing at almost $200 at release most gamers took a pass feeling the graphics and design just wasn’t worth the cost. In a little over a year the Virtual Boy was discontinued and Nintendo tried to forget ever attempting the venture.

Many gamers just could not accept the red color and simple graphics of the Virtual Boy. In addition many gamers complained of headaches and eye strain while using the VB. However, there were some fans of the VR-32 that enjoyed some of the 14 games released in the U.S. including Wario Land, Tennis and 3D Tetris, but it just wasn’t enough to save it.

Some felt Nintendo was just overreaching. With the Game Boy being such a megahit many felt Nintendo did not make a real effort to create a new gaming system. It was felt the Virtual Boy offered almost no real advantage over the Game Boy and with the GB costing almost one hundred dollars less most were not willing to shell out more cash.

In the end the Virtual Boy only sold 770,000 units even after slashing its pricing several times. Strangely enough a small reassurance came when toy stores began selling the Virtual Boy for less than fifty dollars, but by then it was more of a collector’s item than a must have system. The VR-32 is still considered a collector’s item today and many sell for upwards of one hundred dollars on eBay.

I personally came across a Virtual Boy in the now closed Kay Bee toys several years ago. The Virtual Boy had been marked with a clearance sticker for the low price of $29.99. By then the Playstation was already out and there were a ton of better handhelds but something inside me wanted to get it so badly. I admit I thought it looked kind of cool and they were selling the games for $1.99 each so I purchased the unit and five games.


What I did not know was that there were straps for the Virtual Boy so you could wear it on your head which when I tried it just seemed strange. Even stranger was a few of my friends who also purchased Virtual Boys said theirs did not have the straps or any place where straps could fit. Either way the unit felt really heavy on the head and it would be dangerous to walk around like that so maybe I got a prototype or the strap version was discontinued.

Virtual Boy Mario’s Tennis cartridge
Virtual Boy Mario’s Tennis cartridge
Nintendo cartridges
Nintendo cartridges