Ah, the Nintendo 64. I have such great memories of you. You know, I feel lucky growing up in the N64 Era. While the PS1 was awesome, I grew up a Nintendo kid, so I was all about the N64 when I was a kid. I remember the amazing games on it. Remember when every kid loved the N64? Remember when the N64 was the coolest thing on the entire planet? I certainly do. You know why? Because the N64 had an amazing library of games. Sure, it didn’t have the biggest library ever, but most of it’s good games were absolute masterpieces, and it really did follow Nintendo’s motto of “Quality Over Quantity.” Because of it’s amazing library, the Nintendo 64 is my second favorite video game system of all time (only the SNES is better, in my opinion) and I would like to share some of my memories of this amazing invention with you.
I remember when I first got a Nintendo 64. It was Christmas of 1998. I remember I watched my cousin David playing Super Mario 64 a few months before that, and I was amazed because I had never seen 3D before (unless you count watching Toy Story, which was my favorite movie when I was a little kid). You actually had true freedom and you could move around! Growing up on the SNES, NES, and Game Boy, I was used to 2D games. The few games where you did have the freedom to move in any direction were top down games like Zelda and Mario RPG. You may laugh at the graphics now, but in 1998, the visuals were revolutionary. Anyways, since that day, I wanted a Nintendo 64. That’s all I had on my mind for months. I begged my parents every single day for one. I drove them insane, let me tell you. So imagine my surprise when I opened my presents and I got a Nintendo freaking 64! It says something about how happy I was that I don’t even remember any of the other gifts I got. To a five year old, there is no better feeling. I had a similar reaction to this kid:
Yes, I was extremely happy when I got my Nintendo 64. When I popped in Super Mario 64 for the first time, it blew my little five year old mind. Needless to say, I was not disappointed. And let’s not stop there. Let’s talk about the games themselves. Now, this isn’t an article about the all time best N64 games. These are simply some games that I enjoyed when I was a kid.
Oh, yes, Super Mario 64. It is still the greatest 3D Platformer ever made and it always will be. I got this with my Nintendo 64 on that fateful Christmas morning. And I absolutely loved it. The freedom of 3D was HUGE in 1998 (yes, I am aware this came out in 1996) and many people take it for granted nowadays. It seemed you could literally do anything in that game. Even to this day, it’s fun to play and has aged like wine. Who can forget swinging Bowser by his tail? Not to mention the killer soundtrack. There was a time in my life when no other game even compared. This is a true classic.
The Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time. That alone is enough to make any Zelda fan go into a fit of happiness. Many gamers consider it the single greatest video game of all time. And it’s easy to see why. This game changed video games as we know them. The Z Targeting was very innovative and the game took the series into 3D. As Zelda II demonstrates, Zelda fans are wary of any game that tries to stray from the formula, so moving Zelda into 3D was a huge risk that ended up paying off well. This game, even more than SM64, showed you the freedom that was possible with 3D. When I was a little kid, this was my favorite game ever made.
A game I remember getting extremely excited for is The Legend Of Zelda: Majora’s Mask.You know, some Zelda fans hate Majora’s Mask. These people are idiots, because this game is a true masterpiece, plain and simple. The main reason people seem to hate this game is the 3 day limit. I thought it added to the game, as it created a sense of panic and you truly feared that demonic moon coming down and destroying Termina. The only legitimate complaint I see against the game is its stupid save statues (what’s wrong with just pausing and saving?). The masks were awesome and added some cool gameplay mechanics to the formula. The graphics were great. The music was beautiful. The side quests were the best in the entire series. And the game had the darkest and best story in the series. It was an emotional game and you could truly feel the pain and sadness of all those whose lives were ruined by Skull Kid’s (and Majora’s Mask’s) antics. If you ask me now, Majora’s Mask is better than Ocarina Of Time. That’s right, I said it. Majora’s Mask is my favorite N64 game.
Mario Kart 64 was an insanely fun racing game. Seriously, if you don’t have fun with this game, there is something seriously wrong with you. It had great items, nice balance, and awesome tracks, not to mention the multiplayer. I remember finding Peach’s Castle in Royal Raceway and the giant Yoshi egg in Yoshi Valley. This game was good times. This is one of the greatest racing games of all time and yet another good racing game on the Nintendo 64. In fact, it may be the best N64 racer period.
Super Smash Bros. was an amazing fighting game. I’m pretty sure it was the first fighting game I ever played. Nowadays the roster is extremely small compared to the later installments (only 12 characters!), but at the time, being able to play as so many different Nintendo mascots in different Nintendo themed stages was a kid’s dream come true. It may not be quite as fun as Melee (no fighting game is, if you ask me), but this game is ridiculously addictive, nonetheless. I remember playing this game once for nine hours straight.
Who doesn’t love Paper Mario? This was another game I was really excited for. It really had unique graphics that combined 2D and 3D and was obviously inspired by Super Mario RPG. The game had great humor and was very charming. I was in love with this game when I was a little kid. Unfortunately, I sucked at this game when I was younger (I don’t know how, because this game is easy) and never got past Dry Dry Ruins, so I really need to get it again. To be honest, this is my favorite Mario game for the N64. Yes, that’s right, even better than Super Mario 64.
Banjo-Kazooie is an incredible 3D Platformer that plays similarly to Super Mario 64, but is unique enough to stand on its own. Remember when Rare was good? Seriously, in the ’80s and ’90s, everything Rare made was gold. This game is no exception. There is a lot of variety in the gameplay, from shooting and pooping eggs to actually flying, and the game has a lot of charm. This game also managed to be funny without being vulgar, which is rare (no pun intended) for any video game to do. This game is a true masterpiece.
You know, Yoshi’s Story gets a lot of flak for being too easy. Okay, yes, this game is very easy, but it is also very fun. If you ask me, it’s a very worthy sequel to Yoshi’s Island, even if it’s not quite as good. It’s notable for being one of the only 2D games on the N64. It has tremendous replay value, as you’ll have to go through the game several times to beat every level. The graphics and music are great, and the egg throwing is actually improved from Yoshi’s Island. This game is an underrated classic that you should give another chance.
Okay, let’s just get this out of the way: This game is a massive collectathon. That’s true, but collecting stuff is fun in this game. In this game, you get to play as 5 different Kongs, each with their own unique strengths and weaknesses. Also, each Kong gets different weapons and powerups in the game, and the amount of gameplay it offers is staggering. The worlds are massive and the graphics are amazing for an N64 game, truly needing the Expansion Pak it came with. This is a great game that all DK fans should play.
You know, I had an awful lot of fun with this game. Although most people absolutely love this game, there are a select few who think this is a Mario Kart ripoff. How in the hell is it a Mario Kart ripoff? Because it’s a Kart Racer? Yeah, that’s a valid reason. This is one of the greatest racing games of all time. It has great track design and I love how it has three different vehicles. Also, Banjo-Kazooie and Conker’s Bad Fur Day (which I’ve unfortunately never played) were spun off of this, so you have to give it credit for that.
To be completely honest with you, I don’t remember too much about this game, since I haven’t played since I was about nine or ten, other than the fact that it was super fun. I do remember that it had a lot of cool vehicles to choose from. There were also a lot of weapons, so this was quite a lot of fun. Apparently, it’s a spin off of Interstate’76, which I’ve never played. I don’t have a lot of experience in the Vehicular Combat genre, so I don’t know how it stacks up to others in the genre, but it is excellent.
I loved WWF Attitude when I was a kid. I actually learned about a lot of wrestlers on this game, like Stone Cold and The Undertaker. In case you couldn’t tell, I was an extremely casual wrestling fan when I was a kid, as the only wrestler I knew before then was Goldberg. Thank god I know more about wrestling now. Admittedly, when you compare it to the N64 WCW games, it’s probably the weakest N64 wrestling game I played, but it still had unique fighting game controls, a good Create-A-Wrestler, a fairly large roster, and actual commentary.
Ah yes, the original Mario Party trilogy. While the newer party games have grown stale (though still pretty fun), the first three games in the series were amazingly fresh for their time. Mario Party is one of those games that defines the Party Game genre. At it’s heart is a board game that’s pretty, but not really special, but what really makes the Mario Party games so fun are their minigames. If you’re going to play any game in the Mario Party series, make sure it’s one of the first three, even if the later ones are still fun.
As a huge Pokémaniac when I was a little kid, this game was a dream come true for me. I mean, you got to play Pokémon in 3D. How cool is that? Not only that, but Pokémon Stadium had some of the most stunning graphics on the Nintendo 64. However, since I own this game again, I can tell you this game is a disappointment that even nostalgia can’t help. The best part about Pokémon was actually training them and building a bond. A battles only Pokémon game wasn’t the best idea, although the game is still fun.
I have to admit that this is another game I don’t remember much. In fact, I’m pretty sure that it’s one of only two games on here that I have never actually owned. I think I rented this game. Nonetheless, my memories of it are that it was a fun game. Leave it to Mario to make one of the most boring sports in the world fun. Many people say that the GBC Mario Golf is better, but I’ve never played it. I remember liking the fact that Baby Mario was in this game, as I used to like Baby Mario for some reason. This game was pretty good.
Mortal Kombat Trilogy was the other game I never owned when I was a child. I never even rented it. No, my memories of this game come from my playing this game at a friend’s. You see, I had a friend named Dakota who was my neighbor, and him and I and some of our friends used to play this game a lot. I remember being overjoyed at the large amount of characters this game had compared to the other Mortal Kombats. This is the first game in the series where I learned how to use special moves and fatalities. Good times, good times.
The last game I’m going over in this article is one that many people hate, one which was only created to test concepts for Mortal Kombat 4. Well, when I was a kid, I liked this game. You heard me right, I liked Wargods, of all games. Granted, I haven’t played it in nearly a decade, so maybe it really is bad. I liked all the characters in this game. I also went to my first porn site because of it. I was looking for codes, so of course I typed in wargodscodes.com (or wargodscheats.com) and came upon a porn site, so thank you, Wargods.
Well, those are some of the games I grew up with on the Nintendo 64. I’m sure there’s some games I forgot, but those are the ones that stick out in my mind. There are some amazing games that I wanted to mention in this article, but I couldn’t due to not growing up with them, like Banjo-Tooie, Blast Corps, and Star Fox 64. I’m glad I had these games as a kid, as they provided a lot of good memories.
Unfortunately, not all my memories of the N64 are good. There’s one particularly bad memory I would like to share with you. Around 2002-2003, I started becoming interested in the GameCube. I wanted so bad to play games like Luigi’s Mansion, Super Mario Sunshine, Super Smash Bros. Melee, and The Legend Of Zelda: Wind Waker. I really wanted a GameCube, so I begged my mom to get me one. I eventually did get one, Christmas of 2003. Being the stupid ten year old I was, I quickly discarded my good ‘ol Nintendo 64 for the new thing and I never saw it again. That’s something I will always regret, because even though I love the GameCube, the N64 is a better system. Fortunately, about six years back, my little brother and grandma got one at a yard sale for ten bucks, although I don’t have as many games as I did when I was a kid, which will change eventually. While my original one was black, my new one is green. It looks like this:
So far, I have Banjo-Kazooie, Donkey Kong 64, Diddy Kong Racing, Cruis’n USA, Paperboy 64, WCW/NWO World Tour, Yoshi’s Story, Turok 2, and Pokémon Stadium, and my collection will grow.
Well, there you go. Those are some of my nostalgic memories of one of the greatest consoles ever created. I wanted to share them because I love the N64 and many of my best gaming memories come from it. This is truly a great console that had some amazing games. Thank you for reading. I hope you enjoyed reading this article as much as I enjoyed writing it. Have a nice day.