Retro gaming is something that many fans from older generations are quite fond of especially during the 80’s and 90’s.  One of the reasons why retro games were great was because the gaming industry in the process of evolving. We came from playing basic pixel games on the Atari during the 1970’s to advanced 2D graphics during the early to mid 90’s.  Some people would argue that the golden era of gaming occurred during the 1990’s because of competition between gaming companies such as Nintendo, Sega, and Playstation.  Also, it was during the 90’s when gaming companies had developed counsels that began producing both 3D gameplay & graphics. Some popular titles many people are familiar with include Soul Calibur, Tekken, and the Virtual Fighter series.  When 3D gameplay was first introduced it was considered ground-breaking because it was the beginning of something new.  However, throughout the 00’s advanced graphics and gameplay had become the main emphasis of virtually every game that was produced during the decade.

While many games in the 00’s were great they were considered to be popular for different reasons.  The games made mostly during the 00’s were popular because of great storytelling and the introduction of online multi-player gaming.  Some examples of such games included Call of Duty, Dead Space, Halo and Mass Effect.  It was also a time period where RPG’s became very popular and has remained as such in contemporary gaming.    During the 80s and the early to mid 90’s mainstream video games were popular for different reasons.  During the 80’s platform gaming was popular with the development of titles such as Castlevania, Mega Man, Super Mario Bros, and Zelda . Not only were these games challenging but they had good plots that would set the stage for future games in their respective series that would only improve with gameplay and quality throughout time.

During the late 80’s and early 90’s beat em up fight games was highly popular notably titles such as Double Dragon, Final Fight, and the Streets of Rage series.  These games were fun and straightforward in terms of plot.  Along with one on one fighting games beat em up games were commonly seen in arcade centers during 90’s.  Some popular arcade titles included Battletoads (1994), Double Dragon (1987) Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1989), and X-Men (1992). While the beat em up series was enjoyable the one on one fighting games were also very popular.  Some examples include the Mortal Kombat, Street Fighter,  and the Marvel series. These games started to become more popular as beat em up games began to decline.  Fighting games had also become more innovative when cross over team games such as the Marvel vs. Capcom series arrived during the mid to late 90’s.  If you were a 80’s or 90’s child then you remember being super excited visiting these arcade centers during the weekends when you were younger.  The point of this article is to look at the evolution of gaming for over the past three decades and to look at the elements of popular video games within their respective decades to gain some insight how the industry has changed over time.

There is definitely polarization among video game fans about what decade was the best in terms of gaming.   However, the best decade of gaming usually depends on who you ask and what their favorite genre is.  Other factors that come into play include country sales, learning curve, fun factor, gameplay, graphics, innovation, and storytelling.  Many would probably say that modern day gaming in the 10’s is the best due to it having superior graphics then previous decades.  Also, many popular games today mostly for adults have great storytelling along with outstanding gameplay.   Overall, while retro gaming holds a place in our hearts the advancement of technology has allowed key companies such Microsoft, Nintendo along with Sony to produce more superior games with the same fun factor and long lasting value similar to those of the past.

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