The 21 Best NES Games of All Time -

The 21 Best NES Games of All Time

Nintendo Life
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Now if only they could all come to Nintendo Switch Online!

Check out the full list and rank your favorite here:

Written by Zion Grassl & Gavin Lane

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#Nintendo #NES #Retro


  1. castlevania chicken?
    final fight hay-ger?
    music not matching the games?
    no. don't.

  2. So glad you had Dragon Warrior and not Final Fantasy! I would have dropped some of the sequels listed for Metroid, Excitebike, Goonies 2…

  3. 21 games is not enough at least 50 games

  4. Mega Man 2 needs the save state. The game puts the player back to far if they fall.

  5. the word "shmup" is so cringe when it's spoken out loud

  6. Dude, that’s all my grandma plays too, dr Mario is her diamond

  7. Chip N' Dale hard to master? It could be the most easy game on the system! lol! Lovely game and easy!

  8. Shatterhand, power blade, little Samson, panic restaurant, friday the 13th, Tmnt 1, and many many more classics. A lot of these are hard to find today but no doubt awesome titles.

  9. Blaster Master, Faxanadu, Solomon's key, Final Fantasy, Contra, Ninja Gaiden, Rad Racer, Milon's Secret Castle. Those were my young days, truly amazing games.

  10. Nothing in your background suggests that you are a true NES aficionado. Therefore you don't have the right to comment on them. Show us your NES collection and those that you are reviewing and maybe I'll agree. ROMS aren't the same

  11. You had no idea what the movie The Wizard was??? You must be pretty young…. I think every single kid at the time knew about the movie with Mario 3….

  12. Actually, Link taught Scrooge McDuck how to downward thrust/pogo.

  13. How can Final Fantasy not be on the list? 🔥

  14. I'm so happy I was born in time for the NES as a young child .. It basicly feels like modern gaming has grown up with me.. Knowing that even when younger people mention stuff like halo or the ps3 360 era as the beginning of it I'm just sitting there like no it all spawned from the nes

  15. This list was made by casuals.

    No crystalis?
    No guardian legend?
    No final fantasy?
    No river city ransom?


  16. Castlevania is a literal case study on how sound design can make or break a game. The literal impact you feel with that PERFECT sound that the crack of the whip makes any time it makes contact with something is absolutely perfect & is one of the reasons that game is so great! Without that one simple thing, the game would not be nearly as good.

    It's the same way for games like Streets of Rage 2, one of the key factors of that one is the sheer impact of the punches & kicks & the sound they make. Stuff like that elevates games from being good to being fantastic.

  17. Lol I proudly own all four of the NES Dragon Warrior games, as it's my favorite game series of all time next to Zelda. And indeed the DS & 3DS remakes are AMAZING! Even the Gameboy Color remakes of the first 3 games are great!

  18. Lol Gunstar Heroes & Metal Slug came well after Contra did. Just sayin'.

  19. For those bored w the earlier Zelda titles, I HIGHLY recommend checking out the Randomizers for each game. They roll a brand new game with each and every one & basically give you a completely new & random adventure each and every time! They are so damn good that I can't even play the original versions anymore! They are just that much fun!

    The Randomizer for the SNES A Link to the Past is by FAR the best one though. It's so good that it almost feels like the game was originally designed with it in mind! The entire game is set up in a way that makes randomization work absolutely perfectly, and it makes you have to complete the game in totally different ways each and every time! It's just amazing!

  20. Adventure Island 2, has nobody heard of it?!?!

  21. Good list but I would have included Commando. That game was so fun.

  22. Earthbound Beginnings deserves to be considered one of the best 8-bit games.

  23. Beating Ninja Gaidan was the most satisfying video game accomplishment of my childhood. BTW…Life Force was called Gradius in NA on the NES. Also, you’re missing Bionic Commando and Battlefrogs.

  24. Man didn't even include Double Dragon 2 🤣

  25. No faxanadu? No battle of Olympus? Get outta here

  26. Dragon Quest 4 over Dragon Quest 3 is criminal.

  27. You can hack the NES classic and download almost every NES game to it so your grandpa can have more puzzle games to play, like Tetris and Puzznic

  28. List fail. Original Final Fantasy not listed.

  29. Good choices of games… I see you added a lot of games that came put when the snes was already out… unfortunately I missed a lot of these games because I bought the snes quickly once it came out. I was born in the nes era I wss lucky. The first game I played was the legend of zelda 1 year after release. These are more favorites of mine. Metroid (dont know how you missed this one), the goonies and goonies 2 that I think its better. Crystalis, if you like zelda this is a great choice also but this is more like an action rpg game, The legend of the wizard, Startropics, Metal Gear and Snakes Revenge, Adventure Island, The flintstones, Jackal, Double Dragon 1, 2 or 3, Ghosts & Goblins. I now I'm missing so many more games. Hopefully you make a list of snes games next.

  30. River city ransom and Double Dragon 2 are far better beat em ups than final fight and Manhattan project. Are you joking?

  31. Nes games are only hard to get back to if you didnt live the era.. or near it… maybe for a kid growing up in the playsration 2 its harder.. but if you were at least born in the snes or maybe n64.. you can go back easily.

  32. I'd rather have a password than a battery that can go dead after so many years

  33. would add, Metal Storm, Blaster Master, Felix the cat, Tiny Toons, chronicles of the radia war, battle toads and double dragon, Pro Am racing 2, little samson

  34. Dragon Quest 3 didn’t make the list?

    This channel is garbage.

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