Thanksgiving is here again. A lot of the “Early Birds” are doing Christmas shopping now, or are anxious to stay up for 36 hours straight and hit all the sales on Black Friday. This week, families are relocating to other parts of the country for days on end. Most of us are going to be engrossed in football, and gorging themselves on food until they are legally comatose. It’s all good times.
In between my gravy-induced black outs, I like to hit up some video games. Especially if we have little kids, cousins and such, at the house, I like to get them involved. As many kids as possible. The more the merrier. So here are my…
Top 10 Video Games to Play… During Thanksgiving Week.
#10. Chip N’ Dale Rescue Rangers. (NES)
This is an easy to play, fun, nostalgic game. The game play is smooth, and it’s pretty easy to do well throughout the entire game. It’s last on the list only because it’s a 2 player game. Two players only? We live in a world where we can play with anyone from anywhere in the world! Yes, and that’s all well and good, but Thanksgiving is a time for family. No matter how weird they are, it’s always better to spend time with the family than with strangers who have an internet connection. Suck it up.
#9. Starfox 64. (N64)
This is an oldie but a goodie. It helped define the Nintendo 64, as much as the original Starfox helped shape the SNES. It was an instant classic.
Pictured: The good old days.
This is so low on the list, because this one is only a one player game. I’m only taking into account the campaign mode of the games for this list. Yes you can compete against each other in Starfox 64, but when you’re with the family you want to move towards a common goal, rather than destroy each other (which is also fun too). The good thing about this game is that even if you haven’t played it in 10 years, you can beat it in under an hour. Also, even the younger kids will remember this game. Most of them have probably played it. It’s easily substituted so you can hand off your controller smoothly and get to the kitchen before the last turkey leg is gone.
#8. Duck Hunt. (NES)
LOOK AT THE PIXELS!
If you have the means, this is totally worth it. This is also only a 2 player game. THAT’S RIGHT! Two players, baby! Did you know that? If you plug a regular NES controller into the 2nd port, the second player can control the Ducks! How’s that for a family get together for Thanksgiving? “You be a duck, and I will shoot you”. It doesn’t get any better. This game is also easily substitutable, and it gives an opportunity for the older kids to teach the younger kids what they played when they were growing up.
#8. Zombies Ate My Neighbors. (SNES/Genesis)
I did a whole write up on this game. So I’m kind of biased towards it. It’s a classic, and it’s perfect for right around Thanksgiving. All the kids are getting off of their Halloween buzz, and they like seeing all the monsters in one of the games they’re playing. You can easily learn to play this game in a matter of seconds which makes controller hand-offs really easy. It’s still two player, but you can let kids play, or if you are surrpunded by adults, you can make a drinking game out of it.
#7. Marvel Vs. Capcom. (Dreamcast)
This game made the list because there is something memorable for each age group. There are easily recognizable characters. The fights are quick, and the game is addicting. All the ingredients you need for a room full of people. I think this is only a 2 player game, but it’s a button-masher and Marvel Vs. Capcom 1 & 2 are pretty much the same game. This is good if you have about 10 people in a room and they all want to play something.
#6. Powerstone. (Dreamcast)
This game has all the same qualities you find in Marvel Vs. Capcom, but it’s a 4 player game, and it’s even easier to learn. There is so much beginner’s luck involved with playing this game, it’s un-comprehend-able. This is truly one you have to just check out. And come on, get a nice Dreamcast for about $20, and all the games for free? This is a game that is both retro and modern. You can’t beat that.
#5. Halo. (XBox)
Pictured: The most epic, of the epic.
I’ll be honest, I’m pretty biased about this game. If I were being honest to myself, this game would make number 1 every week on any top 10 list I’ve ever done, or any I will ever do. The build up of this game when it was new and “all the rage”, the excitement that came with it, was amazing. For you younger kids, you had to be there. It was the only reason I bought an XBox, originally. But it’s great, like I said, if you have the means you can have up to 16 players (if you have 4 tv’s lying around, and a hub… you’re in good shape. Now, if only I had 15 friends that wanted to hang around me long enough to get through a round. It’s also weird, the thing about halo, and any alien game all the way back to space invaders are categorized as favorites among people with Xenophobia; the fear of foreigners. What a perfect game to play while celebrating the British taking a country away from the natives, and calling it their own — creating a new nation/nationality with it? This is one that everyone will enjoy. It takes a while to pick up the controls, but it’s well worth it. And there’s never really a bad time to play it. Thanksgiving or not, pick up a copy of this, and it’s game on, baby!
#4. 007 Goldeneye. (N64)
Remember when Pierce Brosnan was on top of the world?
Who can say ‘no’ to this? Everyone loves 007! Or at least everyone knows about 007. It’s great for the kids to play, as the N64 is within their grasp, it’ll bring the 20/30-somethings back to the past, and it will give the older people in the room something to watch. This game I think helped make the N64 what it was. It was a yard stick for all 007 games that followed it. It’s up to 4 players, so it’s great for getting out frustration with your little nephews, or cousins. Shoot’em in the face! That’ll show them to take the last of the stuffing.
#3. Rockband. (XBox 360)
Making tweens think they can start a band, since its release date.
You knew this game was going to make the list. I haven’t been to a party that didn’t have this all set up since it came out. Personally, I hate it, but I have it at my house. Just in case a party breaks out, it’s there, in a box, in the closet. This game, everyone knows how to play, but no one is good at. People pick up the mic, and they can’t sing. The quiet guy in the corner can play the guitar on expert and get 99% or better on every song, but show him a real guitar and he scratches his head. The drums are okay, because it’s kind of similar to the real thing. It’ll make for some good stories later. Either way, play it if you’re into it, if you’re not, skip ahead to….
#2. Mario Kart 64. (You guessed it: N64)
Need I say more? 4 players of competitive Thanksgiving-y goodness. Everyone loves it, everyone can play it, and everyone will have a good time. The only thing you have to worry about is gravy on your controllers. Gross.
#1, and the winner this week. Guitar Hero 1 or 3: Legends of Rock. (PS2)
Awesome classic, I like this game. It takes a while to get used to, but it’s a great way to bond and everyone will try it at least once. Later on you can say to your uncle Silas: “Whoa dude, you totally melted face on that solo.” Because I mean, who gets to say that to their uncle? And more importantly, who has an uncle named “Silas”? Your family is weird. It’s also got a little retro mixed in, because of the songs, but it’s more modern than anything. And I’ve been told if you stare at the screen for long enough, you get some really trippy visual effects that are always good in a party-like setting.
There you have it. My top 10 best games to play for Thanksgiving. Pick one and try it out. Or don’t. I already got your page view, so if you don’t like my advice, come back next week. Another list, another 10, another category.
I’ll see you by the fridge, I’ll be the one with a guitar hero guitar strapped to my back.
*All pictures are property of their respective owners, and may be subject to copyright laws. Images obtained through Google Image Search.*