Inspired by GreenHornet214, I too am making a list of my favorite games for each console I own. So if I didn’t own the console, I’m not listing a game for it. Also just a note, these are my personal favorites, so they may differ from your own. And that’s okay. Also this should not be seen as a list of "all time favorite games". Just my favorite game for each console I own. This list was harder to make than I thought it would be.
NES: Super Mario Bros 3
Super Mario Bros. 3 is the first game I remember playing. It’s also one of my earliest memories period. So I’m a bit biased. I spent a lot of time growing up trying to beat it. And while I technically beat it on GBA and not NES, I will always consider it my favorite NES title. It’s just so much fun. And it cemented a lot of what makes the Mario franchise iconic. All in all, a very formative game for me.
Honorable Mentions: Metroid, Dragon Warrior
N64: Pokemon Snap
I know there are probably “better” N64 games I could put on here, but I always loved Pokemon Snap. Plus out of all the N64 games I own, Snap is the one I feel aged the best. Graphically it still looks decent, and the gameplay actually feels pretty good too. Plus it’s just so unique. There hasn’t really been a game like it since. Which is a shame. Seriously Nintendo/The Pokemon Company make a new Pokemon Snap already!
Honorable Mentions: Super Smash Bros, Yoshi’s Story
Gamecube: Luigi’s Mansion
I remember when Luigi’s Mansion came out. WalMart used to have a demo display for the Gamecube with it that I’d play every time my mom dragged me there. Back then, the game confused me. I didn’t really “get it”. When I did eventually get the game years later, I ended up loving it. It was just so well done. Great atmosphere, lots of little details, fun gameplay. I beat the game 5 times in a row originally. I just couldn’t get enough.
Honorable Mentions: Amazing Island, Mario Kart: Double Dash
Wii U: Bayonetta 2
I played the original Bayonetta on PS3. Yes, I know, not the optimal console for the game. But I never really had issues with it. I even ended up loving it (even though it technically took over a year for me to beat). But I liked it enough that I knew that when (or if) a sequel came out I’d be getting it. Which led to me buying a Wii U. Yes, I bought a Wii U for one game. Although, I have since enjoyed many other games on Wii U. But it wouldn’t have mattered anyway since Bayo 2 is worth every cent anyway. A fantastic action game, with a story that actually fixes plot holes in the first game (while admittedly opening up a few new ones). The gameplay is fast paced and just feels satisfying. And the Nintendo costumes are just icing on the cake. Bayo 2 is just a damn fine game.
Honorable Mentions: Yoshi’s Wooly World, Wind Waker HD
Gameboy: Dragon Warrior Monsters 2: Tara's Adventure
My first encounter with this game was an ad in Nickelodeon magazine. I remembered playing the original Dragon Quest (or as I knew it back then, Dragon Warrior) on my NES and loving that so I really wanted this game. One day, while at a mall with my mom and sister I found a copy. I bought it with my allowance, and a little help from my mom since I didn’t have quite enough money. And I fell in love with it. No joke, I poured more hours into that game than any individual Pokemon game. The story was great, the monsters were cool, and the gameplay was just fun. I enjoyed exploring the different worlds. Breeding monsters to get new ones. Just a lot of cool stuff going on in this one. I really wish Square Enix would release the 3DS remake in the States.
Honorable Mentions: Pokemon Red, Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins
Gameboy Color: Pokemon Crystal
I actually don’t have that many Color games. So my favorite one is the one that came with it. Pokemon Crystal. A game I ended up loving a lot. Pokemon Gold was great, I loved it more than Red, and Crystal is just Gold/Silver but better. I loved the Suicune additions, and the small changes throughout. What a great game. Also, fun fact: this was the game that started the trend of me playing as female characters. Because I was more experienced with Pokemon games and games in general at the time I attributed my newfound skills with my choice of playing as the female trainer. It was a weird superstitious thing for me. Eventually I realized the truth, but the trend continued. Now it’s just because female characters tend to have better and more varied custom options, but still the trend continues.
Honorable Mentions: Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons/Oracle of Ages
Gameboy Advance: Metroid Fusion
The original Metroid was once my favorite game ever. Eventually that changed. But at the time Fusion came out, it was still my favorite. And then Metroid Fusion was. I love this game. I love the horror-esque atmosphere. I love them giving Samus more of a personality. The levels were well designed. The bosses…were passable. And the SA-X encounters were heart pounding when I was a kid. Since getting it I’ve beat it over a dozen times. At this point I can beat it in just over an hour and a half. It’s still my favorite Metroid (but here’s hoping Samus Returns can beat it).
Honorable Mentions: Megaman Battle Network 2, Kirby: Nightmare in Dreamland
DS: Chrono Trigger DS
I never had a SNES growing up. I still don’t. So my first time playing Chrono Trigger was on PSOne on the Final Fantasy Chronicles collection. It became my favorite RPG. So much so that when it re-released on DS, with new added features no less, I bought it day one. And it remained my favorite RPG. The new added stuff isn’t mind blowing or anything, but it is nice to have. Great characters, a timeless story, some of the best RPG gameplay I can think of, and a variety of cool eras to explore. There’s not much else to say. I don’t think anyone is shocked by me loving this.
Honorable Mentions: Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story, Nostalgia
3DS: Dragon Ball Fusions
Full disclosure, I have not actually finished this game at this time. But I still love the hell out of it. I love Dragon Ball/Z and I like parts of GT. I’m not familiar with Super yet. But this game is made for fans. Fusing characters together, interacting with them, fighting them. So satisfying. The story so far is pretty good too. The gameplay is great, simple and easy to pick up. I can take breaks and come back to it, no problem. Graphics are very nice. Just a great game for Dragon Ball/Z/GT/Super fans.
Honorable Mentions: Pokemon Sun, Monster Hunter Stories (demo)
PSX: Mega Man Legends
Story time: I first encountered Legends at a friend’s house. It was his brother’s game and we weren’t really supposed to be playing it. But we did. We didn’t know how to save though, so we didn’t cause any trouble. I remember really enjoying watching him play it. He wouldn’t let me play it though (partly since it was his brother’s and partly because as a kid he was bad at sharing). Back then I always woke up before anyone else, so I would get up and play the game while he slept. Years later I found Mega Man Legends in a Gamers store and those memories came flooding back. I ended up loving it and bought the sequel and Misadventures of Tron Bonne shortly afterward. The game hasn’t aged too well, but because of my history with it, it’ll remain my favorite.
Honorable Mentions: Spyro the Dragon, Misadventures of Tron Bonne
I bought Okami at the same time as God of War 2. My mom and I were house sitting for my brother, I was about 13-14 at the time and I bought two games to help me pass time over the weekend I was there. GoW2 was a no-brainer since I loved the first, but Okami was an impulse buy. Despite believing I would be spending the weekend with GoW2, I ended up playing Okami instead. I loved how inspired by Japanese lore and art it was. I loved the music. I loved the unique gameplay. The characters. The beautiful art style. The story. Everything. I know some people say it’s too long, but I disagree. I beat it 3 times in a row originally, and still wanted more. It is, at this time, my favorite game. I absolutely love it.
Honorable Mentions: Rogue Galaxy, Ar tonelico: Melody of Elemia
PS3: Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus
Looking at my PS3 collection left me with a lot of good choices. There are a lot of PS3 games I love. However, the Ratchet & Clank series stood out to me among them. I love the series and especially the PS3 games. And believe it or not, but out of the PS3 games, Into the Nexus is my favorite. I love all the weapons (especially the Winterizer), the Clank levels, and just how great the gameplay was. At the time, it was the best in the series for me. Sure it’s super short and the villains are so-so, but for $20 it was worth every penny.
Honorable Mentions: Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, inFamous 2
PS4: Horizon: Zero Dawn
Horizon caught me by surprise. I wasn’t expecting it to be as good as it was, or for me to love it as much as I did. But it was, and I did. The world feels alive and is actually fun to explore. Aloy is a good character that I actually enjoyed playing as. The gameplay was tight and balanced. And the story. Honestly, just great. Totally kept me hooked and interested. You may think you know where it’s going at first, but you don’t. It totally surprised me, just like everything else in the game. Went from a blip on my radar to one of my favorite games. Can't wait for the expansion to come out and I'm definitely keeping my eye out for any sign of the next game.
Honorable Mentions: DOOM, Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End
PSP: Metal Slug Anthology
Yes, I know, I’m technically cheating. But honestly I spent more time with this game on my PSP than any other game. You’ve got six (technically seven) great arcade shmups in one package. What’s not to love? I loved this collection so much I rebought it digitally for my Vita and am considering picking up a Wii copy to play 2-player with my friends. It’s almost every Metal Slug in one package! What else can I say? This is a beloved series for a reason. Fun arcade-y gameplay and beautiful sprite graphics. Just pure, unadulterated fun.
Honorable Mentions: The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky, Ys: The Oath in Felghana
Once again, this was a toughie. I have quite a few Vita games I love a lot. But I picked Severed for one big reason. I bought it completely on good faith. I read the review on Dtoid and seeing just the score and reading just enough of the review to not spoil anything I went ahead and downloaded the game. I loved everything about it. The visuals were very cool, the touch control gameplay was really unique, the story was dark, it had great atmosphere. It was so intriguing. It had only a few characters, but they were all deep and interesting. Such a good game that more people should experience.
Honorable Mentions: Muramasa Rebirth, Dragon Quest Builders
Full disclosure, despite having about two dozen Xbox games, I haven’t played that many. I got my OG Xbox last year. So I haven’t been able to do much with it. So for now my favorite Xbox game is the game I actually bought it to play. Scaler. A game I owned on Gamecube, but due to some kind of issue (maybe disc rot?) the gamecube game would crash if my character ever stopped moving for more than 3 seconds. After not being able to complete the SECOND TO LAST LEVEL I went to my local used game store and bought an $80 Xbox with a $5 copy of Scaler for Xbox. And you know what? It’s a very good mascot platformer. I played it at a time when those games were few and far between and it scratched the itch quite well. Good level and art design, good gameplay and controls, a cool transformation mechanic, an admittedly pretty dumb story. All in all, very solid game. It probably won't stay my favorite once I start digging into my Xbox backlog, but for now it is.
Honorable Mentions: Tork: Prehistoric Punk, Dr. Muto
360: Remember Me
Much like my OG Xbox I have lots of games for my 360, but for some reason just haven’t played that many. I really need to fix that. But anyway, Remember Me was yet another game I bought on a bit of a whim. I remember hearing about the controversy surrounding its female protagonist and female protagonists in games in general at the time. It’s why I bought the game brand new. I was hoping to support female led games in whatever small way I could. And so I got a game with pretty mediocre combat, but good to great everything else. I loved the game’s world, the memory altering mechanic (wish there had been more), and the story a lot. Admittedly, the characters weren’t great. Nilin was all over the place. But I feel a sequel could have fixed those issues. Alas, we shall probably never know.
Honorable Mentions: DmC: Devil May Cry, Minecraft
Genesis: Sonic 2
Growing up I ended up with a few “hand-me-down” consoles. I got my brothers’ NES, my brother’s PSOne, and my brother’s Sega Genesis. I also got all their/his games. Among them was Sonic 2, my favorite Sonic game. I love almost all the levels, the bosses, the music. It’s just a fun game to me. I also played it a lot in the Sonic Mega Collection + on PS2 and the Sonic Classic Collection on DS. But it’s a Genesis game originally so I’m including it here. Also, just a footnote, but I do technically prefer Sonic 2 with Knuckles. He's just better for exploring.
Honorable Mentions: Battletoads/Double Dragon, Ristar
I have a Saturn but no games for it. I bought it from a Goodwill and it didn’t come with the right cables. Also it did have disc 2 for the game D on it, but it was only disc 2, had no case, and was scratched to hell. So I pitched it. Some day I'll get the right cables and maybe some games. But that day is not today.
Honorable Mentions: N/A, N/A
Dreamcast: Blue Stinger
I’ve got five whole Dreamcast games. And I’ve only really played one. This one. I bought my Dreamcast same day as my OG Xbox, and I’ve been pretty forgetful about filling out my library for it. Hope to fix that in the near future. Anyway, I first encountered Blue Stinger through Game Informer’s Super Replay series. I enjoyed it and their IllBleed one so much I bought both games BEFORE I got a Dreamcast. The game holds up pretty well, better than GI implies in their videos but still not great. Goofy and over-the-top, a fun little game that you’ll enjoy best if you don’t go in expecting much. Like Scaler, this probably won't remain my favorite for this console. But for now, it's the best I got.
Honorable Mentions: IllBleed, Power Stone
So there we go. Now you know. You may judge me now.