Alrighty then- before we get into the top 5, let's go over some honorable mentions that didn't quite make it: RC Pro Am, Wrestling, Kung Fu, The Legend of Zelda, Ice Hockey, RBI Baseball, Tecmo NBA Basketball, Tetris, Castlevania 2: Simon's Quest, Gunsmoke, Life Force, Mega Man 1, 3, and 4, Excitebike, and California Games. And on with the main event:
5. Metroid - After discussion about this topic at Trivia night tonight, I re-thought my number five and am going with Metroid. The downfall of this game is that there is no direction whatsoever as to what to do. However, as a child, I wandered aimlessly though creepy sub-worlds of the planet Zebes and eventually came across the Mother Brain (also featured in the cartoon series Captain Nintendo: The Game Master.) Easily the most adraline-inducing game on the list (or at least adrenaline inducing for a young boy) so it gets moved up to number 5. Sidenote: the JUSTIN BAILEY cheat code was off the hook!
4. Tecmo Bowl - Yep, I put this in over Tecmo Super Bowl. I only did this for nostalgic purposes. TSB has all the NFL teams with NFL licences, as well as 8 plays to pick from per team rather than 4. BUT- Tecmo Bowl is the original classic game that started it all. It had all the teams that mattered (Chicago, NY Giants, Washington, SF, LA Raiders, Vikings, etc. and best of all- NO PACKERS.) I can't even tell you how many hours I played this game. I'm pretty sure this was the main game played if there was a snow day in NW Ohio when I went to the babysitters' house. Walter Payton was unstoppable- and I hate anyone who played with the Niners (three pass plays! Unfair!) Anyway, I will play Tecmo Bowl right now if anyone wants to bring over the original NES.
3. Contra - Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A, B, A, Select, Start. That rockets you into the most kick ass two player game of all time. It also may have led to physical, real-life fights over the Spread Gun, but I digress. Contra was an impossible game made possible by the addition of 27 extra lives using the code above. It is an amazing game about two soldiers who attempt to stop an alien take over and inexplicably have weapon capsles fly over head that they must shoot to release an icon that looks like cheap pilots' wings that then give the soldier a new gun. Ridiculous, right? I know. But it is still an awesome and classic game that is still fun today.
2. Mega Man 2 - I love Mega Man. While the rest of the games in the series are great (most of them anyway) Mega Man 2 is off the hook. The eight bosses in this game are very well-made and each level is very fun (except for Quick Man's level- that one was always a major pain in the ass!) The game has great replay value as it is difficult enough to not beat it too easily, but it is not impossible either (I know, because I beat it as a fourth or fifth grader.) Many could easiliy argue that Mega Man 3 is better than 2, but 2 will always hold a special place in my heart.
1. Super Mario Bros. 3 - This game has it all. SMB3 was the first game Nintendo really tinkered with the idea of Mario gaining ridiculous amounts of powers. He could become a flying racoon, a frog, a guy who shoots fireballs, or a smash brother (one of those turtles who threw hammers.) It also was featured in the movie "The Wizard" with Fred Savage (yeah, nice advert for the Powerglove- that thing was a piece of crap!) As far as ingenious levels, gameplay, and lasting appeal go, I have to give it to the best game for the NES- Super Mario Brothers 3.
So there you go. Disagree with me? Let me know what I should've included. I will say that it was a difficult field to narrow down. Happy Hump Day (Friday for me!)