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What games will we care about 100 years from now?


I guess this post means I’m old now…

I grew up playing games from fairly close to their beginnings and it’s interesting to have conversations with younger people who don’t have the same shared history because their first consoles were PS2 era (which still feels not that long ago in my head) or newer. Some of these people will go to school and learn about games that I grew up playing in their games history classes, which is great that they exist, but kind of a weird feeling.

The point of all of that is, what about a hundred or two hundred years from now, when people are studying important games of the 20th or early 21st century, what ones will they think are important?

I feel like there will be a list of the important firsts in games that pioneered mechanics maybe? Or the first entries in series that will still be going (will Mario, or Zelda, or Final Fantasy ever stop?) Maybe just certain games that were very financially successful like WOW or something? I have a lot of thoughts on this topic going in several different directions. I’ll post more later but I’d be curious to know yours.


In film, the movies people look back on are the ones where the whole of the movie is important. Citizen Kane, Taxi Driver, Seven Samurai, etc. hold up because their rich and detailed in every facet. Whereas, I think you can debate your personal preference of a work, I think there are things with enough esteem that they become, for lack of a better word ‘objectively’ good. Off the top of my head I’m thinking of:

  • Thief: The Dark Project,
  • Silent Hill 2
  • Dark Souls
  • Planescape: Torment
  • Yakuza
  • Shadow of the Colossus

These are all games where I not only remember having enjoyed them at one point, but I remember entire levels, down to details like where the textures repeated.


I would hope that Final Fantasy IX remains played 100 years from now. It’s just a great story, a real fantasy epic, and for me the first time that a cutscene made me go ‘wow that looks so reeeal’.

When I saw this it blew my fricken mind. Heeck. And then the Lindblum cutscene?!
Though it doesn’t quite ‘hold up’ to modern supergraphix, I still think it’s the most beautiful game I’ve ever played.


I feel pretty confident that Sid Meier’s Civilization will be remembered as perhaps the video game that most shaped and influenced the 4x video game genre - or at least for being such a monumental, early example of a 4x game.
1991 graphics or not, that game is rock solid.


I think they’ll need to discuss games that had significant societal impacts, either for good, bad or stupid reasons. So that would include ones like GTA, Minecraft or (as mentioned) WOW. Or possibly that Wii motion controls phase.


Some of the earliest succesful games like Pong or Tetris will be on the list as well.
But really, being remembered simply for being the first of something is a little bit boring, isn’t it?