Earlier this month, the Nintendo Voice Chat crew was on location at PAX West in Seattle Washington to invite fans to once again participate in a game of “Let’s Rank” — the painstaking process of assembling a Top 10 list live, with the help of the audience. As always, the idea was to expose the meticulous and highly scientific process of getting to consensus on something so personal that there simply cannot be any agreement.
In other words, we yelled at each other. Even if the final list is one few would 100% agree with, we all had a lot of fun arguing over it — and judging from the smiles on the faces of our fans at the event — they did, too. Even if things got heated (thanks, Brian).
If you want to see the final list we ended up with, it’s provided at the bottom of the page after a spoiler tag.
And all of these guys:
1. Only standalone Nintendo-made games are eligible. No collections. That means only games published or developed by Nintendo. So, yes to Banjo-Kazooie (developed by Rare, published by Nintendo), but no to Chrono Trigger (made by Square), even if it was on the Super NES. The games have to have come out somewhere in the world. So Star Fox 2 wouldn’t be eligible quite yet, but Mother 3 is eligible.
2. Panel members take turns to add games until a Top 10 starter list is assembled.
3. Audience members line up to take turns adding games to the list. Each choice has to be justified. The audience members can:
a) Swap the location of two games on the list. So if Mario Kart 64 is #1 and Majora’s Mask is #10, they can swap #10 and #1 — the games inbetween remain where they were.
b) Insert a new game at any numbered position on the list. This will bump every game below it down one spot. The 11th game will drop off and be placed in a “recently bumped” area.
c) Revive a game from purgatory and/or swap it with a game on the list. This can only be done once. If a game gets bumped twice, it’s gone. Forever. (Please don’t delete Wikipedia pages, like last time.)
4. Panelists have veto powers. In this incarnation of our Let’s Ranks, we required that all panel members unanimously vetoed an addition or move. So, if someone said “Clu Clu Land,” it wouldn’t get on the list. Nobody did. Thank you.
5. At the end of the game, we have one final round of the panelists making their closing moves before we threaten the audience with publishing the list online to preserve our combined shame for all to see.
You can watch the entire panel at the top of the page, or, if you don’t have that much time to spend, check out our VLOG from our Nintendo Voice Chat YouTube channel. The latest episode includes select scenes from the discussion (and shows you the courageous faces of the audience members who stepped up to the mic).
You’ve been warned, here’s the list:
1. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
2. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
3. Super Mario World
4. Super Mario Bros.
5. Super Mario 64
6. Super Metroid
7. The Legend of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time
8. Super Smash Bros. Melee
9. Metroid Prime
10. Pokemon Gold/Silver
If you already watched the entire panel video and still want more NVC, you can watch our post-PAX episode here, in which we discuss the final list and how we feel about it.
As always, you can watch NVC here on IGN and on our YouTube channel (subscribe and like!) or listen to it on your commute in audio format. If you enjoy the show, share it with your fellow Nintendo fans and leave us a review on iTunes or Google Play. A minute of your time can make a huge difference when it comes to supporting the content you love!
How’d the list turn out?
What would be on your own personal Nintendo Top 10? Remember the rules — no third-party titles.