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The definitive top NES games. Included is four files so you can use whichever works for you: Top 4, 10, 16, and 29. If you want best 65, there's another file on the forum by Jason Carr. I'd recommend the top 4 or top 10


All the top games lists seem opinionated so I decided to make a list that would just be the games most people agree belong on such a list without anyone's personal idiosyncrasies (If this was my personal list you'd see Solar Jetman, but that's a niche game). 


In case anyone cares, this was my process. First I looked through 14 Top nes lists, and made a list of games that were in most of them. I then gave them point values based on how many lists they were in and how high in those lists, and deleted those with low scores. Next, I compared each of the games to each other (looking at each list that two games are in and seeing which is higher than the other the majority of the time). I then ordered them based on that and deleted the bottom ones (sorry Duck Hunt, you're always at the bottom of the list). At this point, I had 29 games and decided to go with that number rather than delete four games just for the sake of having a round number (though I'm not sure that the bottom three games belong, they sort of teetered on the edge of being included or dropped). I split them into groups based on where there was a decent drop from one game to the next, though this was much more apparent in tier 1->2->3 than 3->4. 


Here's the list if you want to see it before downloading the xml:


Tier 1:

1 Super Mario Bros. 3

2 The Legend of Zelda

3 Mega Man 2

4 Metroid


Tier 2:

5 Super Mario Bros.

6 Castlevania III: Dracula's Curse

7 Bionic Commando

8 Contra

9 (Mike Tyson's) Punch-Out!!

10 Final Fantasy


Tier 3:

11 Super Mario Bros. 2

12 Kirby's Adventure

13 Tetris (preferably tengen)

14 River City Ransom

15 Crystalis

16 Ninja Gaiden


Tier 4:

17 Zelda II: The Adventure of Link

18 Castlevania

19 Mega Man 3

20 Bubble Bobble

21 Blaster Master

22 Tecmo Super Bowl

23 Dragon Warrior III

24 DuckTales

25 Excitebike

26 Kid Icarus

Tier 4.5

27 Metal Gear

28 R.C. Pro-Am

29 Dragon Warrior



Although you'd think that this method would miss out on games in a series thanks to different lists having different entries, I found that this was not the case. Even pooling games from a series that no single entry made it did not make any series make it. At best you got something like Duck Hunt, a game at the bottom of every list.

That being said, I did pool the nintendo version of tetris with the tengen version. Most lists had only one, but no list specified nintendo over tengen and some did vice versa, so I counted nintendo tetris as tengen tetris (except for one list that had both)

Personal note, do not play the gba version of Super Mario Bros 3. Play either the NES or SNES version. The GBA version might have some extra features, but restarting from the level rather than the world ruins the game

Also, although it's on the list, don't play the nes version of Metal Gear. Play either the msx2 version or the slightly updated port included in the ps2 Metal Gear Solid 3 Subsistence disk 2 and the xbox 360, ps3, and psvita Metal Gear Solid 3 HD edition


That's all, enjoy!

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