The best videogames of the decade, by review score

It’s the end of a year and a decade, so if you read a lot of gaming sites, it’s likely you’ll be bumping into “best of lists” every way you turn. These are usually based on writer opinions, and typically consist of a very samey “safe” canon of games. But what does science say? Or more specifically, what does score aggregator site Metacritic?

While the best reviewed games of the decade do contain games from the aforementioned canon, a few are titles that no games writer would ever dare to rank so highly – I can’t see Out of the Park Baseball 2007 featuring heavily in such countdowns, for example. And that number one? Totally out of left-field.

1. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2 – 98
2. Grand Theft Auto IV – 98
3. Perfect Dark – 97
4. NFL 2K1 – 97
5. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 3 – 97
6. Halo – 97
7. Metroid Prime – 97
8. Grand Theft Auto III – 97
9. Super Mario Galaxy – 97
10. Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty – 96
11. Half-Life 2 – 96
12. The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker – 96
13. Resident Evil 4 – 96
14. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess – 96
15. BioShock – 96
16. The Orange Box – 96
17. Out of the Park Baseball 2007 – 96
18. Uncharted 2: Among Thieves – 96
19. Baldur’s Gate II: Shadows of Amn – 95
20. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past – 95

Is Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2 really the best game of the decade? Probably not (and there’s no danger of the latest Tony Hawk game making top spot in anything), but this list does tell us something interesting about the hype that surrounds games at their time of release – and also about the benefits of cold, sober reflection years later.

[Via MCV]