Nintendo makes games. The company’s good at it. Not every game with a Nintendo logo on the box or title screen is a classic, but it’s hard to think of another videogame publisher with as good of a track record as Nintendo.
Since the Nintendo Entertainment System saved the home videogame industry in the mid 80s, Nintendo has published some of the most beloved and important games in the medium’s history. Nintendo has created or revolutionized more genres than most developers will ever touch, pioneered handheld gaming and stuck hard to their all ages philosophy as the industry has grown increasingly cynical. Nintendo might not be cool, but it knows what it’s good at.
Perhaps you’re not a Nintendo fan. Maybe you’re too young to remember when it was the dominant game company, and grew up with Playstations or Xboxes. Maybe its colorful, family friendly games always seemed too safe or boring for your edgy personality. Maybe you are just now learning what a videogame is for the very first time and want to know a good place to start. Whatever your situation might be, here’s a primer on 30 games published by Nintendo that anybody interested in videogames needs to play.
This isn’t a comprehensive list of Nintendo games worth playing. Many great games aren’t on the list. (Sorry, Kid Icarus, Pro Wrestling, Blast Corps and more.) Some franchises might seem over represented. This is merely a brief look at the most notable games in Nintendo’s catalogue, from games that broke ground in genres new and old, to series highlights that represent the most ideal version of a significant Nintendo franchise. If you disagree, let us know in the comments or on Twitter @PasteGames.