Console: Super Nintendo
Released at a time when console RPGs meant questing through a medieval fantasy world, most gamers just weren’t ready for EarthBound in the ‘90s. Unusually funny, clever, surreal, and self-referential, Ness’ sci-fi-tinged story is both about saving the world and exploring western culture from an outsider’s perspective — something that’s still rarely seen in video games.
While the game sold abysmally in the States upon release, then became a sought-after collector’s item, it’s now finally easy to experience this classic, thanks to the Wii U, New 3DS, and SNES Classic. Maybe one day Nintendo will finally cave and give us some version of the still Japan-only sequel, Mother 3.