Now I wont go into the other games in as much detail, but there were many that came out in 1998 that either still influence the gaming world today or were memorable as amazing games. To name a few, Marvel vs. Capcom came into the arcades on Jan 23, 1998. Resident Evil 2, which absolutely blew my mind when I first played it, as I was 12 and it scared the living hell out of me, but as much as it scared me, I couldn't put it down and it came out January 21,1998. Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit did not invent police chases, but rather was the first game to do it well and came out March 25, 1998. Thief: The Dark Project was another stealth game, but went medieval on our collective asses and came out just after MGS on November 30, 1998. Rare's way-too-happy-but-still-amazing-even-to-this-day Banjo-Kazooie dropped on June 29, 1998. Tom Clancy's first game, Rainbow Six, which also got me started reading Tom Clancy, came out on August 21, 1998. Insomniac's Spyro the Dragon came out, which eventually led to anther favorite series of mine (Ratchet and Clank), was released September 10, 1998. A game I never got into, but that people still fiend off of, StarCraft, came out on March 31, 1998. The list goes on and on, Fallout 2 (another game I can write a whole page on, but won't here), Grim Fandango, Time Crisis II, Star Wars: Rogue Squadron, Mario Party, Bauldur's Gate, and personal guilty pleasure's Gex: Enter the Gecko and Rival Schools: United By Fate. There are literally games upon games which people still talk about and revere. Well maybe people dont revere Gex, but still, games that are coming out today are still compared to these. 1998 set a golden standard for quality. Any RTS is compared to StarCraft. FPS, Half-Life. Adventure game: OoT, etc., etc.
There were other greats that year, but I feel like I made my point. 1998 is arguably the greatest year in the short history of video games, not even in review score's, but rather in terms of games that have withstood the test of time. 2008 has its share of greats, from Gears 2 to MGS4, from Left 4 Dead to Advance Wars: Days of Ruin and Valkyria Chronicles and Persona 4, there was no shortage of greats, but as for games that can withstand the test of time and be remembered as well as these greats, we will have to see. Personally I think the year that came closest in greatness to 1998 was 2007, where the Next Generation finally matured into the current generation, with epics like Mass Effect, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, Bioshock and many others. I'm not writing off 2008, there were many games I enjoyed, and I plan on playing Persona 4 for a very long time. Also, 2009 looks to be a year of true originals, with Brutal Legend, Prototype, InFamous, Borderlands, Rage and a number of other, AAA titles lined up for 09. We'll have to see. Goodbye 2008, you were good, you just got beat by 1998 is all.
(Note: All games release dates were based off of Wikipedia and this article was about the North American release dates. If I forgot a great game, sorry, but there were so many great games that I remember from that year that I dont think I could remember them all, but feel free to politely let me know why you loved it. And yes Spice World did come out in 1998
. Special thanks to whoever made the Half-Life cereal box image.)