Your biggest wow moment of each gen you've lived through

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Shadow1980 said:

Gen 6: Stepping out of the life pod in the second level of Halo CE and seeing the massive, open outdoors environment for the first time, thus showing that FPS levels could be more than a simple corridor crawl.

Yes.  This particular moment was a big part of what made Halo so incredible.  

3rd Gen: When I got home with my new shiny NES and popped in Super Mario Bros. It was like discovering a new dimension.


4th Gen: Donkey Kong Country. The SNES had been out for a while and when I finally wanted one and got it for my birthday it didn't come with Mario, as I had expected, but instead this weird monkey game. So I felt a bit disappointed at first but once I started playing it blew me away. The visuals looked really advanced for it's time, the music was great and the gameplay was on a different level from what I was used to.


5th Gen: Super Mario 64 certainly was an interesting experience but it was Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time that really blew me away. At this point I had started to lose interest in gaming but something drew me back in and I decided to use up some money I had saved on a Nintendo 64. Super Mario 64 came with the system and was my main reason for getting the console, but I also got Mario Kart 64 because it looked really fun. Then, for reasons I don't remember, I picked up a third game: the newly released Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. It's strange, because my only previous experience with the series was Adventure of Link for the NES and that game had kicked me in the nuts and stolen my lunch money. It just wasn't a pleasant experience for a small kid with very limited gaming skills. But I got Ocarina of Time and boy was it good. It took me many months to conquer but it was magic from start to finish. This is the game that made me go from casually playing games to becoming a true gaming nerd. Ocarina of Time is by far the biggest moment in gaming for me and, sadly, I don't think anything will top it.


6th Gen: This one is a bit more difficult but I'm gonna say the first village in Resident Evil 4. Sure, I was stunned by the visuals and the game is freaking amazing but it is the improvements to enemy behaviour that made this game so interesting and intense. Think you can climb up a ladder, knock it down and be safe? Nuh-uh, the enemies will just raise the ladder again and climb up after you. Long gone was the enemies in Perfect Dark whose best party trick was a weird side-way jump. Enemies were getting smart and it excited me greatly.

Eternal Darkness with its fantastic atmosphere and sanity system was another contender but in the end I had to give it to Resident Evil 4.


7th Gen: This is even harder. Ever since Zelda made me her slave during the 5th gen it has gotten more and more difficult for games to really impress me. I just don't get those giant wow moment anymore that gives me more tingles than any ASMR session ever could. Playing Wii Sports for the first time was awsome, and made me want a Wii (Twilight Princess certainly helped as well) but motion controls didn't wow me as much as my first steps into the 3rd dimension. The aiming in Metroid Prime 3 sure was great and these days I can't live without motion aiming but it didn't made me drool. So I'll give this one to Xenoblade Chronicles. The story was great and it was fun to play but the greatest highlight was the environments, the games huge and beautifully crafted locations. And they did this on the Wii! Squeenix had tarnished the Final Fantasy series by following up Final Fantasy XII with whatever XIII was and here came Monolith Soft to the rescue showing how it's done. They should've had these guys make Final Fantasy XIII.


8th Gen: No clue, really. I guess I'll hand it to Nintendo for how impressively they destroyed the successor to the Wii and the Wii brand. Gotta give them credit for that. And I suppose Donkey Kong: Tropical Freeze was fudging great and showed that side-scrolling platformers still could kick some serious butt and that Retro Studios still had the ability to make stupidly good games. It was also highly impressive how so many could ignore that masterpiece but on the bright side the Switch port of Tropical Freeze seems to have done well.

Now that I think of it, looking at my Xenoblade Chronicles X playtime was also a wow moment, probably bigger than the ones I already mentioned.


9th Gen: It took a while (20 god damn years) but I finally had another Holy mother of God-moment worthy of many songs. Yeah, I'm talking about Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. I have to admit that I was slightly worried that Nintendo, with their limited experience with open-world games would deliver a Legend of Zelda game that, while good, would suffer from the same emptiness that made the big locations in Twilight Princess somewhat boring. That didn't happen and instead Nintendo hit a home-run, like ten times in a row. Breath of the Wild is such a well-crafted game and not only a sign that the Legend of Zelda franchise is healthy and in good hands but also that Nintendo is back and ready to play. Breath of the Wild is an important moment for fans of Zelda, of Nintendo and of games in general. And most of all for me.

AngryLittleAlchemist said:

First of all I just want to say - thank you so much for replying and giving me a well thought-out explanation. This is exactly the kind of thing I wanted, and it was quite rude of me to take so long to respond. Partially it was because I was busy, you know, playing a lot of games, which I rarely do and it was quite refreshing to do so, and also it was partially because I just didn't feel like coming on this site much. But the few times I came on I should have responded to this reply instead. So thanks for your patience.

I know that you were talking very specifically about two separate parts - I just felt like asking because you seem to be (and going by this reply, are) very good at articulating your thoughts on games, and I've seen you use Nier as a reference point to games in general numerous times. So it seemed like a good time to ask why the game in general was held up so highly. 

I also want to say I wasn't trying to imply that my problem was that the areas are too small, if anything, kind of the opposite, they're pretty appropriately sized but during the more subtle moments of the game traversing the world can be kind of boring. 

As for the video: It's pretty good and I think I've actually seen it before, long ago. Granted, a lot of it kind of involved just using big words with heavy emphasis as descriptors and that got a little tiring after a while, some parts of video games are also just naturally very hard to describe and I got the feeling that Skill Up wanted to explain feelings that were just nearly impossible to explain (even before he came out and outright admitted it in the video). Overall while I wouldn't say I got anything new out of the explanation (since a lot of it chalks up to it being revolutionary, unique, and something that can only be done in games - which is naturally quite commonly mentioned when referring to Automata), it did remind me of why I am so eager to try out the title again, even if very much so on a surface level. It's hard to get into what makes a game like that brilliant without just going straight into spoiler-territory, and I actually found myself wishing he showed a little less in his video or didn't explain the fact that character-swapping happens each new campaign.  I have to admit though half-way through the video I started to realize that this was the same guy I had listen to a few weeks earlier saying in his God of War review that the game took "lots of skill" and that in comparison Devil May Cry involved button mashing "a lot of the times" - which just brought back the cringe. It's funny to think about though and I don't have anything against him lol, just one of those things that was made light of on Reddit when DMC5 came out and I find it funny that midway through I just realized it was the same guy xD. I would also say his assessment of Dark Souls is sort of wrong in that regard, I seem to remember the original having areas that change quite a bit based on repeat visits but admittedly a lot of that was probably static and just a case of me waiting till I was a higher level to go back (though things like characters do change, even outside of Fire Link). 

I must admit I'm a little bit scared of the definition of "revolutionary" though, because I find that this has been in pretty consistent use in the past few years, and it's usually too lightly. There's generally three ways you can apply that - how much it changes the industry, how much quality the product has, how unique it is in it's respective franchise, or how unique the product is. Often the mixture of these three elements make the use of the term very complicated, and when used wrongly, asinine to use. I was going to give examples in Breath of the Wild and Smash Ultimate - how those games are both very revolutionary and both very much not so for different reasons, but I've realized I do not want to delve too much into semantics. 

I also have to say while you are right about the music I think this is something Platinum Games actually does pretty consistently and a decent amount of games have done it before and after Nier, though I will admit it's not done enough and it's a cool idea indeed.

I guess I will never know until I jump in and find out for myself - which means I'll have to play it, eventually. On the topic of how I found out about the dead body in the tutorial area - I realized that after exploring the part  of the city you're first dropped off in, it's like to the left of where you start. I have a very bad habit of basically restarting a game any time I've been away from it for a substantial amount of time - which can include just a couple of days. I've basically replayed the first few hours of Automata probably around 8 or more times, maybe even up to around 12. Like I said it's a very bad habit of quitting and restarting, which probably doesn't help my motivation for seeing the game through. 

Yes, I think I have gone past the Circus area before even. 

Just so you know, I personally have no issue with people taking their time to reply to me. Partially because I do that as well at times, and also because I usually do so when I want to put more thought and effort into a post than just saying "Cool, thanks."
And during those times, it's easier to makes more lighthearted posts in other topics.

As for the video, it is probably very hard to describe the things that make this game stand out without delving too deep into spoilers.
But on that subject, there were a few scenes he showed in it where I too wish he hadn't. And honestly not sure why he chose, unless they're taken from promotional videos by Square that they think is ok for you to see. They're not too spoilery when seen out of context, but the imagery of a few of those scenes were still things I'd rather people don't focus on, or remember while they play the game. So in order to not draw more attention to it, I didn't mention it when I posted the video. Though perhaps I should have recommended to listen to it without looking at it. But I'm not sure how effective that would be.

Regarding the mentioning of switching character, this is something I always struggle with when I describe the game to someone, and I try to gauge how much I should and shouldn't say. Preferably I would like to mention nothing about it. But some people get to the point where they see the ending for the first time, and then stop there. I've even encountered someone on this forum doing that. And some play as 9S for a bit, and consider it not worthwhile to continue.
And honestly I can't blame them, because the way the game is structured, it gives you the impression that you've seen everything, or most, of what is worth seeing. And while adding repetition that can feel tedious at times, I can totally understand why someone would stop there. But it would be such a huge mistake to do so, that I always feel the need to highlight in some way the importance of continuing.

Though personally I never say anything about playing as another character. In my reply to you for example, I tried to even avoid mentioning multiple endings, until I got to the point where I was describing where the game picked up for me. At first I wrote it as "near the ending", but whenever I looked at the sentence it came off as if I was hyping up optional post game content or an epilogue, so I reworded it to "near the first ending".
The reason I did that was partially influenced by the fact that you're already struggling to find your motivation to keep on playing the game. And also because I remember that reading about how the world changes in subsequent playthroughs was one of the most influential pieces of information that motivated me to pick up the game again and continue.
I don't think the video means to  imply that you play as anyone in addition to 9S, but I can see why it would lead you to believe so due to some footage he chose to use.

And yeah, I've seen some other games dynamically change the music during certain moments. Killer Instinct and Devil May Cry 5 for example.
Though at  some points Nier does it in ways that I think are more clever than what I've seen in other games.

As for the term "revolutionary", it can depend on how it changes the industry. But even if no other game ever takes influence from these things Nier does, I'll still be satisfied with experiencing it once in one game.
I know that term is thrown around a lot in the industry. But I don't think it's usually used in the same context. People use the term 'epic' all the time, to the point where it just became a synonym for 'awesome'.
I don't know if revolutionary is even the term I'd like to use to describe it, but like the guy in the video when he tried to find the word that could best describe the sensation of associating one sense through stimulation of another, it's the best word I can find to describe it because it involves exceeding my expectations in ways that I've never seen before, or thought of.

To try to put it a bit into context, there are two other games I look at in a similar manner. Mario 64, and Metal Gear Solid. 
For Mario it was mainly the transition from 2D to 3D.
Even if no future game had taken influence from them, I'd still value the experience they gave me as something revolutionary that I'm glad I experienced. Because they drastically exceeded my expectations, and they made me feel and think things that went beyond just good gameplay or storytelling.

I've played many games since then that climbed above them in my favorite games list. Suikoden 2 for example is my favorite game, and Mario 64 isn't even in my top 20.
But MGS and Mario 64 are still the biggest 'wow moments' for me in my gaming life. And now Nier: Automata is the third game to join their ranks.

I may very well play games where I enjoy the gameplay, story or music more than Nier. (Although the story is really good.) But at this pace, I may never encounter a fourth game to add to that list.
Now that I think about it, only Shigeru Miyamoto, Hideo Kojima and Yoko Taro managed to do that. And there are not a lot of people like them in the industry.

I hope that helps explain what I mean by revolutionary without getting into specifics. Perhaps there's a better term for what I'm trying to say.
But if you do continue the game, I'll just give you the advice to try to take your time to enjoy it by doing side quests, as some are crucial to the main story, and see it through to the very end.

Last edited by Hiku - on 21 March 2019

Mattel Intellivision : Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, Sea Battle, Lock 'N' Chase.
Commodore 64 : Fort Apokalypse, Impossible Mission, Mr.Robot, Jump Man, Commando, GHOSTS 'N GOBLINS!
Amiga500 : Another World, Flashback, Defender of the Crown.
Playstation : Tekken, Tekken2, Ridge Racer, Need for Speed, GT1, Formula One, Oddworld:Abe's Oddysee, Crash Bandicoot, Metal Gear Solid, Tomb Raider, Pro Evolution Soccer, NBA Live 97, and so many others.
Sega Saturn : Sega Rally, Virtua Figher2, Nights Into Dreams.
Nintendo64 : Super Mario 64, Banjo-Kazooie, Goldeneye 007, Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire.

to be continued, I'm tired.

”Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.”

Harriet Tubman.

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PS2 fighting someone in fight for New York, with submissions turned off, applying submissions anyway to show him, once a leg, arm, or neck is. broken, the HP drops to red, for the KO.

I'll probably come back later and make another post about other moments right now it's too early   and my noodle didn't wake up with me

1996: 3D gaming
1999: Portable gaming
2007: online MP and online gaming
2011: HD gaming
2012: PC gaming
2013: Mobile gaming

The years that I got into these things for the first time and had wowed me


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Gen PS1: first time I played Battle Arena Toshinden

Gen 7: the heist of the prologue of GTA V and "Bower Lava Lair" music in Galaxy 2

Gen 8: of course the Chaos Blades. No body can't even pretend it's otherwise.

"Quagmire, are you the type of guy who takes 'no' for an answer ?"
"My lawyer doesn't allow me to answer that question"

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PS4 gen: GoW—the entire game, but one of my biggest wow moments in any game or movie or show ever was the fight with The Stranger.

PS3 gen: Tie between MGS4 and Uncharted 2–especially the intro/train scene.

PS2 gen: I skipped much of this gen, but RE4–whole game blew my mind, partially bc seeing how far games had come. 

PS gen: Syphon Filter. Game was engrossing from start to finish for me. Cool story, cool gameplay, etc.—well, to the 8 year old me at least.

Gen 3 - Super Mario Bros 3
Gen 4 - Starfox
Gen 5 - OOT
Gen 6 - GTA3, RE4 and Metroid Prime are tied for second
Gen 7 - Last of Us
Gen 8 - God of War
Gen 9 - Zelda: BOTW so far

Note: No gen arguments as I class NS as Gen 9.