As the video game industry evolved in the early 1990s, 1993 proved to be a pivotal year for the gaming world. Many groundbreaking video games were released, setting new standards for game design, graphics, and gameplay. From the first-person shooter genre to racing games, and Japanese role-playing games, the year saw the emergence of some of the most beloved and memorable games of all time. In this article, we will take a closer look at the top video games of 1993, highlighting the most significant and influential titles that shaped the gaming industry as we know it today.
Simon the Sorcerer
The 1993 Amiga and MS-DOS point-and-click adventure game Simon the Sorcerer by Adventure Soft takes players on a fantastic trip through an alternate reality populated by monsters and mystery. Simon, the main character in the game, has to become a wizard and defend a person from a malicious sorcerer. The Lord of the Rings, Jack and the Beanstalk, and other well-known fantasy novels and fairy tales are parodied in the game’s setting, which is inspired by the Discworld series. Simon the Sorcerer won praise from critics for its sharp dialogue, stunning visuals, and entertaining gameplay. Because to its continued success, Adventure Soft created Simon the Sorcerer II: The Lion, the Wizard, and the Wardrobe in 1995 as a follow-up. The game was redistributed for PC through GOG.com in 2008 due to its enduring popularity over the years. A 20th Anniversary Edition of the game was later created by MojoTouch and launched on Google Play in 2013.
Gunstar Heroes, a run-and-gun game developed by Treasure, was released on September 10, 1993, exclusively for the Sega Genesis. This game utilized the special 16-bit hardware available only from the Japanese company, Sega, which allowed for quick gameplay and large visuals. The game’s side-scrolling viewpoint, reminiscent of the Contra series, presented a challenge to players, even experienced gamers. The game’s fast-paced action, co-op play, and overall design earned it high praise from critics and players alike. Gunstar Heroes was a prime example of the capabilities of the Sega Genesis. It is considered one of the best games of its category and remains one of the most enjoyable Sega Genesis games ever created.
Super Mario All-Stars
Super Mario All-Stars is a remastered collection of the original four Super Mario games that were released on the Nintendo Entertainment System. With the launch of the game on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, the 8-bit graphics of the previous titles were replaced by 16-bit visuals, offering players an enhanced gaming experience. The collection also featured a unique Japanese version of Super Mario Bros. 2, later known as Super Mario Bros: The Lost Levels, which was initially only available by purchasing a Super Nintendo and sending proof of purchase to Nintendo. This game went on to influence new generations of games, including those found at Japanese online casinos. Super Mario All-Stars was a massive success, selling over a million copies within the first ten months of its release, and remains a sought-after game today.
Splatterhouse 3, a horror-themed beat ’em-up game developed by Namco for the Mega Drive in 1993, was a successor to the popular Splatterhouse 2. It was one of the first games to receive a rating from Sega’s Videogame Rating Council and was classified as MA-13 for its graphic violence and gore. Splatterhouse 3 departed from traditional side-scrolling gameplay and introduced exploration elements, allowing players to navigate a haunted mansion filled with ghosts. The game’s horror elements occasionally blurred the line between beat ’em-up and survival horror genres, similar to games like Resident Evil.
In 1993, Nintendo made a major leap into the world of polygonal graphics with the release of Star Fox for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. As one of the first video games to feature this revolutionary technology, it marked a significant departure from the two-dimensional graphics that had been the norm. Despite being a rail shooter, Star Fox quickly became one of Nintendo’s most iconic and beloved franchises, breathing new life into a console that was facing declining sales. In many ways, it served as a trial run for the innovations that would come to define the gaming industry in the years to come.
Myst, released in 1993, quickly became one of the most beloved computer games of the year. It stood out as a pinnacle of classic PC gaming, prioritizing breathtaking visuals and captivating gameplay over the simpler side-scrolling experiences of Nintendo or Sega consoles. Its popularity was largely due to its immersive blend of fantasy and sci-fi elements, with an intricate plot and inventive use of sound and music. Myst remains a fan favorite and a landmark achievement in the history of computer games.
1993 was a pivotal year for the video game industry, with the release of several groundbreaking games that set new standards in game design, graphics, and gameplay. Each game brought something unique to the gaming world, from engaging humor to immersive storytelling and innovative technology. These games have continued to influence the gaming industry and inspire new generations of games and a number of these vintage games are now valued at a modest fortune. The top video games of 1993 remind us of the importance of taking risks and pushing the boundaries of what we know to create something truly remarkable.