Mike’s Top 10 NES Games

Like Mitch noted in his personal Top 10, that’s exactly what this is, my personal top 10. These were games that pretty much sum up my days gaming on the NES.

10. Cobra Triangle

I’m not quite sure how I first came across this game, what I do know that many summer days were spent with friends trying to outscore each other. For those not familiar, you are a boat, with guns, that flies from river to river, you rescue drowning people from other boats with guns, some crazy UFO looking water contraption tries to blow you up with missiles, you fight a loch ness monster, the list goes on and on. It’s awesome.

9. T&C Surf Designs

Skateboarding and surfing, what’s not to love?Growing up in the Midwest, I have zero experience with surfing, the closest was maybe water skiing.Skateboarding on the other hand, it was one of my favorite hobbies. Anything that had skateboarding I had to play. The obvious choices for skateboard games were skate or die or 720, but the speed, the air, the obstacles, the gameplay in general, had me hooked.

I remember the day I bought T&C. I was at one of the first Funcoland locationss in MN. This location was in a small office space, with shelves on the wall lined with games. When I grabbed the T&C box, it caught the box next to it causing a chain reaction of NES boxes fall off the shelf like Dominos. I was probably 8 years old and now all these cool teenagers are looking at me like “who let this idiot in?.”

8. Mario 3

Not much to say on this one, often referred to as the greatest NES game ever, it took everything we loved about Mario and made it bigger, better and upped the visuals once again. The one thing I loved about Mario 3, was it actually let you interact with the world to an extent. Rather than being transported from level to level, the player gets to choose a path through the world as well.

7. Contra

Ummmm…..Contra…..what else needs to be said? Ummmm……Contra……! Like many other NES games, this was one that I could never beat without the extra lives code. We all know about the spread gun, it was the most amazing weapon in a video game EVER!!! Actually though, the one thing that always cracks me up was how pissed friends would get at each other from stealing lives. I used to do it all the time and act likely I accidently hit the button.

6. Mike Tyson’s Punch-out

Again, another game I was never able to beat. Come to think of it, I don’t know anyone who has. This game was flat out amazing. The game play was and still is some of the most addicting you will find. Was there anything funnier than punching King Hippo in the junk repeatedly? Nope.

5. Ice Hockey

This game was so damn fun, sure blades of steal was probably a better hockey game, but nothing was better than out scheming your opponent. Pick 3 skaters of 3 varieties, speed, balanced and fat, play hockey. Simple concept, awesome result.

4. Pinbot

You would be hard pressed to find anyone that would put Pinbot in there top 10, but for me it was pretty simple, it was a blast. Actually, playing pinbot with my mom was probably on of my favorite childhood memories. Say what?!?!?!? Gaming with your mom? Yep, she actually bought this game for herself, but the competitor in me could not let my mom be better at a video game than me. To this day, my mom can kick my ass at Pinbot.

3. Adventures in the Magic Kingdom

Quite honestly, I am not sure what it is about this game that I loved so much. When you think of Capcom games for the NES most think of Ducktales and Rescue Rangers. For me it was Magic Kingdom. I think what really drew me in was the top down driving missions.

2. Battle Toads

This game was just flat out awesome. Look I was addicted to Ninja Turtles as a kid, why not toads as well? This one can be summed up in the first sequence of events.

  • Beat the hell out of alien warthog
  • Beat the hell out of robot, steal robots leg
  • Beat the hell out of more wart hogs with robot leg
  • Beat the hell out of alien bird,
  • Throw rocks and mech warrior shooting rocks at you
  • Jump down a gigantic hole
  • Swing from side to side smashing alien crows


1. Micro Machines

This for me was a no brainer. I played this more than any other game on NES. The sense of speed, the top down gameplay, and one of the most addicting multiplayer modes on the NES are all reasons this is my hands down number 1. All the places in which one would want to have sex, you race micro machines. Kitchen table, pool table, bath tub, beach, if you can have sex on it, you can race micro machines on it, the concept is pretty simple.

Honorable Mentions – Dr. Mario, Mario 2, Yo Noid!, RC Pro Am, Ice Climbers