To rejoice its twentieth birthday, we’re working down the 25 greatest GameCube video games, as determined by VGC’s panel of specialists.
In 2001 Nintendo launched a brand new console. However regardless of the hype, it by no means ended up promoting in as huge numbers as the corporate had hoped.
That console was the outlandish Nintendo Gamecube, a daring, purple field which regardless of its many glorious video games, discovered itself third in a three-horse race, with Sony main and Microsoft holding its personal in second.
But regardless of these disappointing gross sales figures, many who owned Nintendo’s console fell in love with it – as is usually the case with Nintendo’s few spectacular failures – because of its glorious line-up of principally first-party software program.
To rejoice the variety of this grossly underrated console’s library, right here – on its twentieth birthday – is our listing of the 25 greatest GameCube video games ever.
Greatest GameCube Video games: #25 – 21
DreamMix TV World Fighters
What it’s: A Smash Bros clone which has a struggling TV station placed on a preventing event starring characters from totally different worlds.
Why it’s Important: Lengthy earlier than Konami shocked avid gamers by permitting Strong Snake to characteristic in Tremendous Smash Bros Brawl, it had included him on this sensible Smash Bros-like sport.
DreamMix TV World Fighters performs similar to Smash Bros, however as an alternative of that includes Nintendo characters it as an alternative brings collectively characters from Konami and Hudson Mushy video games, in addition to toys from Japanese toymaker Takara.
The result’s a preventing sport starring the likes of Simon Belmont from Castlevania, Strong Snake, Bomberman, Tyson Granger from Beyblade and even Optimus Prime and Megatron from Transformers. Clearly try to be offered on it already.
Tony Hawk’s Sequence
What it’s: 5 basic video games in Activision’s skateboarding sequence.
Why it’s Important: The primary Tony Hawk sport on GameCube, Professional Skater 3, was the one which completely nailed the sequence’ iconic skating gameplay. The introduction of the revert, permitting gamers to proceed combos after performing vert jumps, fully modified the best way the sport was performed and made insanely lengthy combo runs doable.
The following GameCube entries – Professional Skater 4, Underground, Underground 2 and American Wasteland – all constructed on this components, however by no means went fairly as far as to smash what was factor.
They’re all, due to this fact, value searching down. However don’t get something from the appropriately named Downhill Jam onwards.
Viewtiful Joe 1 & 2
Why it was chosen: We not often use the time period “cool as hell” when describing video video games however Viewtiful Joe gladly suits into this description as if it had been a skin-tight superhero outfit.
Joe is a standard chap whose girlfriend has been kidnapped by the villain in a film they had been watching on the cinema (bloody IMAX). Fortunately, he’s armed with the V-watch, a tool that lets him remodel right into a superhero with the phrases “henshin-a-go-go, child”.
Cue some magnificent cel-shaded face-punching motion, full with cool as hell (see?) gradual movement bits.
WWE Day of Reckoning 1 and a couple of
What it’s: One of the best wrestling video games on GameCube which are really about wrestling.
Why it was chosen: To be clear, the Def Jam video games are nonetheless the most effective wrestling video games on GameCube, however clearly not each wrestling fan desires to play as Redman.
For extra a extra standard WWE expertise, give each Day Of Reckoning video games a go. They’re not fairly up there with the Smackdown video games on PlayStation techniques however they dealt with storylines higher than every other WWE sport so far, notably Day Of Reckoning 2.
They don’t contact N64 gem WWF No Mercy, however they’re nonetheless high quality wrestling titles.
What it’s: The last word crossover preventing sport, pitting Capcom’s (principally Street Fighter heavy) roster towards that of SNK (The King Of Fighters, Deadly Fury).
Why it’s Important: If there’s one in style gaming the style through which the GameCube suffered barely it was 2D preventing video games. Properly, racing video games too, however let’s concentrate on fighters.
Capcom vs SNK 2 is the one exception to this rule. With a large character roster – there are 23 Capcom characters and 23 SNK characters to select from – this one’s deeper than a scuba diving thinker.
There’s additionally an elective ‘EO’ system that makes it simple for newcomers to carry out particular strikes by simply flicking the suitable stick, a characteristic that makes an typically intimidating style much more approachable.
Greatest GameCube Video games: #20 – 16
World Soccer Successful Eleven 6 Ultimate Evolution
What it’s: The one model of Professional Evolution Soccer launched on GameCube.
Why it’s Important: GameCube followers who beloved soccer, hated FIFA (as a result of it wasn’t nice again then) and couldn’t see the glory of Virtua Striker had an enormous downside: whereas they had been moping round in football-free hell their PS2-owning friends had been having fun with the fantastic Professional Evolution Soccer sequence, which remained staunchly Nintendo-free within the west.
One model of PES did really make it to the GameCube, although. World Soccer Successful Eleven 6 Ultimate Evolution was really the Japanese model of PES 2, and whereas that wasn’t precisely the head of the sequence it was nonetheless PES on Nintendo at a time when that wasn’t alleged to exist.
Def Jam Vendetta and Battle for NY
What it’s: The successors to WWF No Mercy, one of many best wrestling video games ever made.
Why it’s Important: Though most wrestling sport followers adored No Mercy when it was launched on the Nintendo 64, writer THQ and developer AKI sadly went their separate methods after its launch.
As a consequence, AKI was shortly employed by EA, who had earned the license to make video video games based mostly on rap label Def Jam Data. The consequence was Def Jam Vendetta, a wrestling sport that performs similar to No Mercy (albeit slightly quicker) however options the likes of Methodology Man, DMX and Ludacris as an alternative of WWE superstars.
Its sequel Battle For NY is even higher, including a load of recent rappers to the combination: Ice-T, Snoop Canine, Busta Rhymes, Xzibit… the listing goes on.
What it’s: The second entry in Criterion Games’ adrenaline fuelled racing sequence.
Why it’s Important: Sure, Burnout 3 was a greater sport, however good luck discovering that on the GameCube. The second providing remains to be a unbelievable racer and, like its siblings, brings the entire threat/reward idea to the fore in a approach that few different racing video games do.
Driving protected and staying out of hazard in Burnout 2 will see you trundling over the end line together with your head between your wheels. The one solution to construct up your increase is by risking your life: driving on the mistaken facet of the street, simply lacking head-on visitors by a hair’s width and the like.
It’s an effective way to ensure fixed pleasure, as a result of success is a direct results of recklessness.
What it’s: The one model of Namco’s weapons-based fighter to look on a Nintendo system.
Why it’s Important: With regards to preventing video games, Bandai Namco could also be greatest identified for its Tekken sequence however there’ll at all times be a following of followers who take into account SoulCalibur the most effective.
What makes SoulCalibur so entertaining is the truth that each character is armed with a weapon with which to strike their opponent: not solely that, however the weapons are wildly totally different, making for all kinds of various preventing kinds.
The GameCube model of SoulCalibur II additionally options Hyperlink as a playable character.
What it’s: The ‘first’ model (when you don’t depend the Japanese N64 one) of Nintendo’s much-loved life sim through which gamers transfer to a brand new village and befriend its anthropomorphic residents.
Why it’s Important: The GameCube model of Animal Crossing doesn’t have a lot of its successors’ new options: the portability of the DS model buying centre within the Wii model, the StreetPass excellence of the 3DS model, the crafting mechanics of the Change sport.
However there’s nonetheless one thing about its simplicity that we love. Regardless that there’s a lot to see and do, it nearly appears extra manageable than the daunting feeling you get once you play the likes of New Leaf.
Plus, it has one factor the later Animal Crossing video games didn’t have: a load of NES video games in-built, 14 of that are nonetheless accessible to at the present time.
Greatest GameCube Video games: #15 – 11
Pikmin and Pikmin 2
What it’s: Proof that you simply most likely aren’t able to be a mum or dad, in online game type.
Why it’s Important: The Pikmin video games are most likely essentially the most heartbreaking issues Nintendo has ever created.
At face worth they’re sensible action-strategy video games through which Captain Olimar, crash-landed on a mysterious planet, has to instruct a military of tiny creatures to struggle enemies and carry objects for him to assist him survive after which escape.
However once you play, and one in every of your little Pikmin dies, and their little ghost floats away into the sky, it’s going to make you query your very being.
What it’s: The sport that cemented Luigi’s standing as Nintendo’s most lovably cowardly character.
Why it’s Important: The GameCube was the primary Nintendo dwelling console that didn’t launch with a Mario sport, and as such many felt that Luigi’s Mansion represented one thing of a poor substitute, as if it was kicking issues off with a B-list character.
Finally although, Luigi’s Mansion was the absolute best launch title for the system, displaying off a variety of spectacular lighting and animation results. It’s additionally genuinely humorous, with Luigi cowering all through. It’s very brief, but it surely’s value enjoying by means of a minimum of as soon as.
What it’s: A intelligent shoot ’em up by style masters Treasure.
Why it’s Important: Ikaruga is your typical Japanese bullet hell sport through which the display fills with bullets and the intention is as a lot to dodge between the gaps as it’s to destroy your enemies.
What makes it fascinating is its colour-changing mechanic. Every enemy is both black or white, as are their bullets, and gamers have the flexibility to vary their ship’s color atyour ship is similar color as an enemy’s bullet it might probably take up it and construct up a particular weapon meter.
Nevertheless, your individual pictures are additionally weak towards same-coloured enemies, so you’ll want to maintain alternating between absorbing their bullets and switching to the alternative color to take them out extra successfully. Ikaruga provides a intelligent layer of technique to the shoot ‘em up style, which makes it a must-play.
What it’s: An excellent remake of Capcom’s seminal survival horror sport.
Why it’s Important: Unique to Nintendo (effectively, till the HD re-release in 2015), this unbelievable remake of the primary Resident Evil gave the survival horror basic an enormous visible overhaul.
Changing the B-movie visuals and voice performing with extra spectacular graphics might have eliminated a few of Resi’s appeal, however the RE-make (because it’s affectionately identified) seemed so wonderful it’s no shock it was roundly beloved.
Tremendous Monkey Ball 1 and a couple of
What it’s: A pair of arcade ports that confirmed Pokémon it wasn’t the one sport on the town when it got here to jamming animals into tight spheres.
Why it was chosen: Sega’s ports of its arcade titles had been completely balanced assessments of controller dexterity, and in addition supplied some sensible mini-games again when gamers nonetheless accepted mini-games.
It was the primary mode the place it counted, although. Every of its levels outlined the ‘simple to be taught, troublesome to grasp’ mantra in its purest type.
Sure, it’s doable to easily full the sport by reaching every of its objectives within the standard method, however head to YouTube and earlier than lengthy you’ll see what can actually be completed with the sport within the fingers of a Monkey Ball ninja. It’s actually the sport that retains on giving.
Greatest GameCube Video games: #10 – 6
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
What it’s: The genuine model of the Wii’s greatest launch sport.
Why it’s Important: Through the years Twilight Princess hasn’t actually been held to as excessive a regard because the likes of Ocarina, Wind Waker and even Majora’s Masks. As one of many darkest Zelda video games although, many nonetheless find it irresistible.
Maybe one of many causes it’s not heralded as a lot as its cousins is because of its Wii Distant controls within the model that launched alongside the Wii, which felt slightly tacked-on. There’s motive for that: they had been.
Twilight Princess was at all times alleged to be a GameCube title, and it feels higher on the GameCube too. Hyperlink holds the sword in his left hand like he’s alleged to (the complete Wii model was mirrored horizontally so right-handed gamers might swing the Wii Distant like a sword) and the participant can freely management the digital camera: one thing not doable within the Wii model.
The Dice model was launched in restricted numbers so it’s tough to seek out today however if you wish to play the true model of Twilight Princess – the one the place Kakariko Village lies to the east prefer it’s alleged to – then hunt it down.
Mario Kart: Double Sprint!!
What it’s: The fourth and most opinion-splitting sport within the Mario Kart sequence.
Why it’s Important: Double Sprint remains to be sensible, and it laid down the inspiration for the Mario Kart sport engine that’s nonetheless used (albeit in a barely modified type) to at the present time.
Its curious tag-team racing format might not have actually caught on with followers of the sequence, but it surely offers the sport a singular flavour today and to at the present time it was nonetheless the one respectable try to make Mario Kart a co-op expertise.
Plus it was the one ‘correct’ Mario Kart sport ever to allow you to play as Petey Piranha.
Everlasting Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem
What it’s: A GameCube unique survival horror that focuses much less on scares and extra sanity, with ingenious outcomes.
Why it’s Important: Everlasting Darkness is the kind of sport that might have been ruined had it been launched right this moment. Folks can be tweeting clips of its weird sanity results and spoiling the surprises for everybody.
For many who performed it when it first got here out, it was a really intelligent sport. Taking management of twelve totally different characters from totally different historic intervals – from a Roman Centurion in 26 BC all the best way as much as a scholar in Washington within the yr 2000 – it saved issues fascinating not solely with its continuously altering settings however the best way it messed with the participant as their character went slowly insane.
One minute the digital camera angle would tilt barely and the sound results would get slightly louder. The following you’ll enter a brand new room and end up on the ceiling. You then’ll attempt to save your sport and it’ll fake to be formatting your reminiscence card as an alternative.
What it’s: The fourth sport in Nintendo’s lightning-fast futuristic racing sequence.
Why it’s Important: It’s nonetheless spectacular that F-Zero GX was effortlessly placing out silky easy 60fps gameplay nearly 20 years in the past.
Not solely that, it was attaining that 60fps fee in an insanely quick racing sport with as much as 30 racers on the monitor on the identical time.
Only a few video games are as exhilarating as F-Zero GX, and to at the present time most Nintendo followers would give their proper arm for a remake or sequel.
Paper Mario: The Thousand-12 months Door
What it’s: One of the best of the Paper Mario video games, and one of many funniest Nintendo video games ever.
Why it’s Important: The second within the four-part Paper Mario sequence, The Thousand 12 months Door has a number of the funniest dialogue you’ll learn in a Nintendo sport, particularly every time Bowser is concerned.
When you’re not opposed to a sport the place you’ll most likely be studying greater than you’ll be enjoying, it is a true delight.
Greatest GameCube Video games: #5 – 1
Star Wars Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Chief
What it’s: Proof that launch video games can stay a must-buy proper by means of the complete lifetime of a system.
Why it’s Important: Some would argue that Rogue Squadron II remains to be the definitive Star Wars sport, and we’d battle to disagree with them.
That iconic first stage, through which you fly above the Dying Star earlier than descending into the trenches to take out the core, is arguably the best stage in any Star Wars sport, and amazingly hasn’t actually aged a lot within the 13 years since.
The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker
What it’s: The Zelda sport that the majority followers despised earlier than they really performed it.
Why it’s Important: When Nintendo confirmed off its new-look Zelda sport at House World 2001, a number of followers had been upset. Dubbing it ‘Celda’ due to its controversial (on the time) cel-shaded graphics, many gamers had been incensed that Nintendo was seemingly dwelling as much as the “Nintendo makes child video games” insults that playground bullies beloved to make use of within the early noughties.
Then they really performed it and realised it was unbelievable. It might be slightly simple and a tad shorter than most Zelda adventures, however The Wind Waker stays an important expertise.
Tremendous Smash Bros Melee
What it’s: The second Smash Bros sport, and the one many nonetheless take into account the most effective.
Why it’s Important: For many who don’t take into account themselves professional Smash Bros gamers, who choose aside the trivia of the sport’s preventing system, the most effective Smash Bros is the one with essentially the most stuff in it: due to this fact the Nintendo Switch model.
However that’s to not say Melee isn’t nonetheless a unbelievable sport, it completely is and remains to be full of lashings of Nintendo love. If in case you have a GameCube, you’ll want to have Melee.
Metroid Prime and Metroid Prime 2: Echoes
What it’s: Retro Studio’s wonderful reworkings of the Metroid franchise, turning Samus’ side-scrolling adventures right into a pair of first-person masterpieces.
Why it’s Important: Go into Metroid Prime and Metroid Prime 2 anticipating a first-person shooter and also you’re going to be fairly disenchanted. Regardless of that vast arm cannon Samus is sporting, fight isn’t the primary level of those video games.
As a substitute, it’s a first-person journey. The act of exploring the worlds you end up in and the necessity to scan your environment (actually) makes for some of the immersive sport worlds ever. Two stunning video games.
What it’s: Arguably the most effective survival horror sport ever made.
Why it’s Important: For many, the second that outlined Resident Evil 4 got here half an hour in.
If you entered the village and the residents out of the blue flip evil, most gamers bumped into a close-by home and blocked the door by pushing a bookcase in entrance of it. Till that time, online game conference meant that every one enemies had been rendered helpless when confronted with an impediment.
Right here although, they broke the window and climbed in. And adopted you upstairs. And arrange ladders so they might get onto the roof. And knocked over your bookcase. And in simply 5 minutes the complete guidelines of video video games had been modified.
Earlier than it began getting all minimalist with the Bit Generations and ArtStyle video games, developer Skip introduced us this lovable GameCube sport a couple of helper robotic.
Disney Sports activities Soccer
Sneer all you need, however this Konami soccer sport is mainly Worldwide Celebrity Soccer 64 with Disney characters.
Donkey Konga sequence
A trilogy of rhythm motion video games appropriate with Nintendo’s most ridiculous controller ever, the DK Bongos.
Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
Simply in case your Donkey Konga bongos hadn’t already been overwhelmed to mud, they is also used on this quirky platformer.
Fireplace Emblem: Path Of Radiance
Not the most effective Fireplace Emblem sport each made however nonetheless a superb instance of why Intelligent Systems’ technique sequence is beloved by followers the world over.
Take a look at Neversoft’s softography and proper within the center, after its Tony Hawk video games however earlier than its Guitar Hero sequels, lies this underrated open world wild west sport.
The primary of eccentric developer Suda51’s video games to be launched within the west, what drives Killer7 is its weird story line and its distinctive artwork type.
Lego Star Wars II: The Authentic Trilogy
The Lego video games haven’t strayed too removed from their authentic components, as is confirmed once you check out this, the second of what now stretches to sixteen titles.
Halfway Arcade Treasures 1, 2 and three
When you’re craving some retro arcade goodness, these three compilations mixed provide 52 of Halfway’s basic coin-op titles, from Defender and Gauntlet to Smash TV and Mortal Kombat III.
Prince Of Persia: The Sands Of Time
With this, Ubisoft managed to do what had been tried and failed prior to now, and made Prince Of Persia related once more.
Resident Evil 2, 3 and Code: Veronica X
These GameCube variations of basic PlayStation and Dreamcast titles don’t actually add something new, however are nonetheless value monitoring down when you’ve by no means performed them.
Resident Evil Zero
One other Nintendo unique entry (on the time), Zero is basic old skool Resident Evil, tank controls and all.
Developed by now-defunct Liverpool studio Rage Software program, this instructed the story of all 5 Rocky motion pictures (on the time) in a enjoyable arcade-style boxing sport.
Sonic Journey DX: Director’s Minimize and Sonic Journey 2: Battle
Remakes of Sonic’s two Dreamcast adventures, and arguably the one actually nice 3D Sonic video games.
Tremendous Mario Sunshine
Sure, everyone knows Sunshine was not at all the most effective 3D Mario sport, particularly contemplating it’s ceaselessly sandwiched in historical past between Tremendous Mario 64 and Tremendous Mario Galaxy. But it surely did provide some pleasing moments even when they too had been sandwiched, this time between nail-gnawingly irritating bits.
TimeSplitters 2 and TimeSplitters: Future Excellent
Cracking FPS video games from Free Radical, a studio partly made up of former GoldenEye and Perfect Dark builders.
Virtua Striker 2002
The definitive dwelling model of Sega’s love-it-or-hate-it arcade soccer sport. It’s bought a hidden team full of Sonic characters.
WarioWare Inc: Mega Celebration Sport$
The GameCube port of Clever Techniques’ first WarioWare title additionally included a bunch of daft multiplayer takes on WarioWare, which had been nice enjoyable to play with sufficient keen contributors.