Games I Simply Couldn’t Put Down

Games I Simply Couldn’t Put Down

Have you ever had a game that grabbed you and simply wouldn’t let go? Were its claws dug in so deep you had no choice but to surrender yourself to it body, mind, and soul? I think we’ve all had those sick days from work or school that simply had to be called in due to an overwhelming desire to game. Take Crusader Kings II , for example. It would definitely appear to fall into the “gaming crack” category, as according to the publisher, one user has seemingly racked up over ten thousand hours of playtime.

This got me thinking. What titles have hooked me like that over the years to where I simply could not/would not put them down? After much pondering, here are five of my biggest gaming addictions from years past.

Super Mario Bros. (1985):

Without a doubt, I have Mario to blame (or thank) for my video game obsession. The fun and adventure this little experience offered up still resonates today, and receiving this as a surprise Christmas gift remains one of my fondest memories. To this day I am still plagued by nightmares of world 8-1. The only other entry in the series that comes close to touching this is Mario 64 (another personal favorite).

Mortal Kombat II (1993):

During the ‘90s, I found the need to split my gaming hours between my home systems and the arcade at my local mall. While this might not seem relatable to some of you youngsters out there who’ll never get to experience this scene (and I weep for you), believe me when I say Mortal Kombat was the hottest thing around at the time – beating out even Street Fighter . I pumped countless quarters into its bloody sequel in 1993, which would later go on to become one of the best fighters on the SNES.

Madden 98 (1998):

As the arcade scene began to die down, technologies at home continued to improve. The Sega Saturn was my hardware of choice over more popular iterations such as the newly released PlayStation, and that’s where I was first introduced to the world of Madden (I was a Joe Montana: Sports Talk Football guy up ‘till that point).  Full disclosure, the only reason I didn’t put this game down was the simple fact that I couldn’t. Not because I loved it so much, but because I didn’t own a memory card. I ended up having to marathon the entire season right through to the Super Bowl over a two-day-long period.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City (2002):

I didn’t dive headfirst into the seedy underbelly of GTA until Vice City came along. I can still hear the catchy commercial which used to air on TV every ten minutes, featuring Flock of Seagulls’ “I Ran So Far Away.” The neon-soaked streets of this 80’s Miami-esque backdrop drew me in like no other. It was Vice City that turned me on to the joys of what real sandbox gaming had to offer, and I’ve been chasing that high (no Scarface pun intended) ever since. Even GTA V can’t recapture that same magic. It only happens once in a lifetime.

Games I Simply Couldn’t Put Down

Halo: CE (2003):

I can think of no other game which has affected my adult life more than Halo . While I’m certainly not as into the series presently as I was in the past, I can’t even begin to calculate the endless hours I’ve lost to this shooter’s late-night multiplayer lobbies. I’ve made no secret that I prefer my FPS games played via mouse and keyboard, so when Bungie ported the Xbox’s flagship release to PC, my world was changed forever. I credit Halo: CE as my rebirth into the world of first-person. For that, I’m forever grateful.

I can confidently say the above list on scratches the surface of how deep my passion and appreciation for our industry truly runs. Hell, the fact that you’re reading this article at all is a testament to that love. I’ve practically made it my life’s work! But I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s had these “can’t sleep…must game” spells sweep over them. What are yours? Let us know in the comments section below, so we can all compare notes. Think of it as gaming AA.

I’ll start. My name is Jason Messer and I’m a video game addict…and proud of it.

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