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Lately, I've been more and more infatuated with the memories of games that I grew up with. Maybe it has to do with the bucket loads of HD collections being released, or maybe it's just that I'm getting old, but the nostalgia behind certain games have had me intoxicated as of late.
"I remember when you needed BATTERIES for your wireless controller."
One game that comes to mind is Kingdom Hearts. I absolutely loved that game as a kid. The interesting thing is, I wasn't even a huge fan of Final Fantasy or Disney but the game was so good that it didn't matter. There was something about the overall execution that made it the perfect game for the time and age that I was when I played it. So much so that I am almost refusing to play the HD remake because I don't want to taint that image.
But I don't have that feeling with all games I grew up with, obviously. Or else this post would be kind of pointless (not that this post wasn't already a little pointless). I bought and downloaded Manhunt as soon as it was released on PSN, as that was another favorite growing up. And wouldn't you know it, it was exactly as I remembered it. I've heard time and again that often times when a gamer would play a title that they grew up with that it didn't hold up. Clearly, no game would be as good as when you first experienced it as an innocent and impressionable child. But If that was the case then it makes no sense that after picking up the God of War Collection (with GOW's 1 & 2 - games I played religiously as a kid) that they held up better than I remember as a wee lad.
What do you mean time distorts memory!?
The first God of War, particularly, held up light years better than I had anticipated. It was funner and more satisfying than nearly all action games I've played since (not counting proceeding GOW titles - with the exception of Ascension, of course). Obviously, nostalgia can't take credit for the brunt of that - though excellent game designing can. Which only says so much about games today.
I like to think that I'm not cynical to the point where I can't appreciate modern gaming. I still enjoy the holy hell out of countless newer releases. But I don't feel as if any will hold up as well as a select few from my - as you may have noticed - reasonably recent childhood. If it were entirely nostalgia then I would still notice glaring gameplay flaws, but in the case of the first God of War (and the one game that hasn't left any console I've owned since: Resident Evil 4) that is simply not the case. Those are just brilliantly made, timeless games.
I've mentioned numerous times that The Last of Us was the best game I've played in many years. But, I fear, even that superb title will not give me the same tingly feeling I get when I land a critical headshot on a Ganado or rip a powerless archer in half with Kratos in 5-10 years. I realize how highly subjective all of this is and I don't blame anyone who has gotten annoyed enough to click off of this page by this point. But having said all of this, I'm certain I'm not the only chump with the same feeling. At least I really friggin' hope not.
What are some of your irreplaceable favorites from childhood? Leave your thoughts and experiences!
And if you feel inclined to read more of my asinine rants and reviews then visit or follow me on Tumblr at: http://readingrightonthelines.tumblr.com/
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