The Nintendo 64, otherwise known as the N64, was Nintendo’s third home console system released in 1996. And that release introduced us to an astounding world of 3D animation that took our favorite characters into even more expansive and inventive worlds.
These are the nostalgic favorites of the N64. Read the list we’ve compiled, and then close your eyes and try to remember what it felt like to experience real wonder.
The start of lighthearted partying fun with friends. That is, until your friend pays Boo to steal your star and thats when shit gets real. Ass-kicking shall be had in the next round of mini games so be prepared. And much fighting will continue now that we’re on number 10 of the series.
A game that allows for flight by bird in your knapsack and melodious powers, this is a fun addition to the console that give you control over an adorable bear that is out to save his sister from an evil witch.
This is the first time that we were able to see Pokémon duke it out in 3D and it was one of the most exciting things ever, especially because you were able to transfer your Pokémon from the GameBoy over to the N64 and watch your Charizard or Psyduck or Venisaur in all of their glory on the big screen. And it also came with the piece that allowed you to transfer. You didn’t have to buy it separate, so that was a major bonus.
Conker’s Bad Fur Day
This foul-mouthed alcoholic squirrel was originally in Diddy Kong Racing, but soon after he got his own game, one that was a bit too inappropriate for kiddies and was thus shifted over to the mature section of the rental store. It’s a fun Saints Row type of silly violence that gives us Alka-Seltzer for Conker’s hangovers and a frying pan in which to bang enemies’ heads in with.
Star Fox 64
If not for the game itself (which was awesome), we were pretty excited for the first rumble feature, and this would mark the start of countless games that would alert us to an explosion or monster attack by the vibrating of our controllers.
Donkey Kong 64
Probably the most well-known portion of this game is its DK rap, but besides that, we’re exposed to a variety of similarly named Kongs that aid our previously villainous simian in his race to recapture their Golden Bananas. A very important endeavor.
Mario Kart 64
The second installment of a game that is as detrimental to friendships as Monopoly, this addition to the list races Yoshi against Bowser, Toad against Mario, but without the aggravating blue shells and annoying lightning bolts. This one was an improvement to the slightly disorienting Super Mario Kart and the beginning of a series that is still releasing today and inspires many a night of “drunk driving.”
Super Smash Bros.
Others have tried, but it’s very difficult to find such an intuitive and fun fighting system that pits characters with a wide range a skill against each other that doesn’t just feel like a knock-off Mortal Kombat with just a few familiar faces. The Smash series has its fighting down to a science and its no surprise that the series has its own official tournaments now, both in arenas and our living rooms.
The James Bond-inspired, first-person shooter that inspired many an FPS after, GoldenEye was the game to make multiplayer FPS a bit more mainstream and eventually paved the way for all of our other favorites in the process. The single-player was pretty fun, but what made this even more fun was inviting friends over to blast them with bullets in the various death matches.
Super Mario 64
This was a launch title for the N64 and it showed us right out of the gate what we would be expecting for the rest of the console’s life. Mario and the gang are more than a few pixels on the screen! Awesome! And not only did we get to fully embrace joystick controllers and the capability of a wider scope than just side-scrollers, we could play around and squish Mario’s face on the title screen with the controller.
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
Of course this one was going to be on the list. This game is still considered by most to be the best Zelda title. That may change with the release of the new open world Breath of the Wild, but when this came out, exploring Hyrule was as open world as we had ever experienced before. This was the fifth installment in the series and the first of those to be 3D. It was an innovative title that revolutionized the genre with its storytelling, z-targeting, and exploration. Even if another title trumps this one, a title that has already come out or that is still to arrive, we will fondly remember playing our ocarinas and discovering the terror of cuccos. Not fondly remembered will be the Water Temple. I’ll take Navi telling me to listen every day if I just don’t have to go in there again.