The passage of time is something we gamers know very well! From the rise and fall of the arcades to the failed systems that were attempted by company after company. We’ve seen it all and been there for everything. Landfills, cancellations, reboots, development hell, and so much more.
The test of time is the real thing to hold true. We’ve seen it before, go back to watch movies from the 90s and you’ll see a multitude of ‘Radical’ references and attempts at being cool and hip. Games can be no different, with the graphics, writing, and gameplay. There are some games out there that were champions of their day, and yet by today’s standards are not the gems we once heralded them as.
There are a few games out there that ARE still the gems we loved in yesteryear that still hold up to this very day. These are the games that are timeless and will never get old no matter how old both they and we get.
So sit back, grab your Retro-goggles and get ready to look back on games that are still 10/10 classics to this very day!
Rome: Total War 
The strategy game that set the bar for so many to come after it. It’s the third in the Total War series, of which was already being praised for its high-quality gameplay and attention to detail with the likes of Shogun and Medieval. But Rome is where the series peaked and introduced features that were far ahead of the time it was initially released.
The 3D models were the main upgrade that left many of us stunned at the time; it was a huge upgrade from the sprite-based gameplay from the last game. The maps were just as captivating as well and left all of us feeling like this was the right upgrade of the RTS genre that we’ve been waiting for. Along with a campaign that easily had one of the greatest finales ever made and future installments still struggle to trump to this very day.
It was very mod friendly as well since you could alter the values by the text file in the games main folders. Essentially providing a near infinite sandbox to play around with that could eat up thousands of hours of our lives, to which it did very quickly thanks to it’s polish and shine.
Thank you Rome:Total War, you introduced many of us to what RTS could be and have kept us hooked ever since.
Roller Coaster Tycoon 2 
We’re considering this a bit a combination. Roller Coaster Tycoon 2 is pretty much the first game, but better. No way around that one, and in some ways, there isn’t anything wrong with that. The first game was legendary and kept our fingers occupied for hours on end!
Then Roller Coaster Tycoon 2 came and introduced the scenario and ride editor and pretty much kicked us all in with pure quality! You had tons to experiment and play around with, setting up the ridiculous scenarios or rides that would most certifiably spell disaster, but was damn entertaining! Building an insane creation that the participants would not dare step foot on because it spelled total death, and the sick to clean up afterward was hilarious! It was a pure sandbox experience, Minecraft before Minecraft existed.
Some people seem to prefer 3 due to its 3D upgrade, but while 3 did add plenty more to the table. It’s a test of time that we’re ranking here, and Roller Coaster Tycoon 2 is the absolute old school RCT experience that everyone knows and loves to this day.
Castlevania: Symphony of the Night 
It’s the game that coined the term ‘Metroidvania‘ It completely re-invited what mechanics the Castlevania series would in the future. Symphony of the Night introduced a plethora of gamers to the world of backtracking, demon battling, collect-a-thon madness with a Gothic noir setting and it was glorious!
Castlevania: Symphony of the Night is praised by being the game that reinvented the wheel for Castlevania, and made it a cult classic. The change from Simon Belmont to the far more interesting Alucard and his battle against his father Dracula and the dark plot that would follow. Or more light-hearted remembrance such as the ridiculously amusing start of the game with gems like “Die Monster! You don’t belong in this world!” that were truly the best meme material. It offered hours and hours of exploration and fun gameplay that only the best completionists could appreciate.
Whether it was your introduction to the series or captured a renewed interest with it’s burst onto the scene, Symphony of the Night is easily one of the best Castlevania games ever made.
That was our list!
These were a few select games that are the 10/10s of their era and still hold up today. Time has not been rough to them, but instead they able to hold their heads up proudly in the face of time and provide the same addictive experiences they did years back.
There are tons of games we didn’t cover, and would love to hear what you consider to be a classic that still holds up today! We might even add them onto this list down the line! Let us know your thoughts!