Yes, here it is, and sure to start as many arguments as it settles: our 50 best electronic games ever. Really. 50 Lemmings, Amiga. Psygnosis, 1991. Ah, little green-haired, blue-clothed beasties with high-pitched voices. Addictive platform game that ported everywhere - even to a pocket calculator. Admit it: like everybody else, you set off the nukes just to hear them squeal "Oh no!". 49 PacMan, Arcade. Namco, 1980. A Nintendo rep supposedly once said that if video games really affected kids, then everyone who played Pacman as a nipper would spend their time in dark mazes, listening to electronic music, munching on little pills. Oops 48 TONY HAWK'S PRO SKATER III, PS2. ACTIVISION, 2001. The whole skate-sim phenomenon was boosted with the hype around this one. A shocking version was released on PS1, but the PS2 game had better physics, better graphics and improved on the original in all areas. 47 GRAN TURISMO, PLAYSTATION. SONY, 1998. Practically every car racing buff had this one. Although the graphics on the sequels are better, nothing beat the original Turismo for playability. You started out with a dodgy car and upgraded as you won prize cash. 46 Super Metroid, SNES. Nintendo, 1994. Great music and trigger-finger stressing action coupled with a huge array of weaponry and upgrades made Super Metroid a classic of side-scrolling games. One of those evolutionary titles that's part of most gamers' history. 45 Medal of Honor, PlayStation. Electronic Arts, 1999. So popular it crossed the platform barrier and got made into a PC title. Medal of Honor is Doom meets Saving Private Ryan, and it popularised realism in first person shooters on the PlayStation like no game before it. 44 Marathon, Macintosh. Bungie Software, 1994. Technically, Marathon was Doom's superior by a long shot - a great story-line, spooky aliens, and real 3D environments. It was hampered only by the smaller market penetration of the hardware. Some of us lost days to this puppy 43 Legend of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time, N64. Nintendo, 1998. Drawing on previous Zelda titles, The Ocarina of Time took the series into 3D and to new heights. Excellent gameplay and puzzles were combined with top-notch graphics, pleasing old fans and new. 42 Donkey Kong, Game & Watch. Coleco, 1982 It started out as an arcade game, but it wasn't until Donkey Kong hit the handheld market that both really took off. The Game & Watch was a staple in most early-'80s playgrounds. 41 Unreal, PC. Epic Games, 1998. Nothing stirred gamer rivalry in the '90s like an argument over which game had a better engine - Quake II or Unreal. The latter featured intuitive AI, dazzling graphics and a very tight storyline, making it a milestone for first person gaming. 40 Thief: The Dark Project, PC. Eidos Interactive & Looking Glass Studios, 1998. While everyone else was running wild blowing up aliens, Thief players were happy sneaking around, stealing gold, coshing guards and generally Robin-Hooding it all over the place. Introduced the world to the First Person Sneaker and was a great game to boot. 39 Falcon 3.0, PC. Microprose, 1991. Falcon 3 has a special place in the heart of anyone who's ever nursed a flight-sim joystick. Realistic flight physics, branching campaigns and superb graphics made Falcon the benchmark for simulations of all kinds. 38 Dark Forces, PC. LucasArts, 1996. LucasArts' answer to the Doom craze. Technically, Dark Forces was years ahead, featuring real 3D levels and excellent textures; more importantly, it let you blow away Stormtroopers with an array of dazzling weapons. What's more, it taught us all that Thermal Detonators are a great way to fly. 37 Goldeneye 007, N64. RareWare & Nintendo, 1997. Until Goldeneye, most gamers thought it was impossible to make a first person shooter for a console. Wrong - Goldeneye did it with James Bond flair and then some: an intuitive control scheme and exotic, Bond-esque levels. 36 Baldur's Gate, PC. BioWare & Interplay, 1998. RPGs were dying out on the PC and even the pen-and-paper Advanced Dungeons and Dragons was looking sickly until Baldur's Gate hit the scene and reminded us all how much fun it was beating up orcs for yucks. 35 X-COM: UFO Defense, PC. Microprose & Mythos Games, 1994. Predating Command & Conquer and Starcraft by at least a year, X-COM is still played by a rabid legion of real-time strategy fans. This game had atmosphere coming out the wazoo and near infinite replayability. No alien invasion since has been so gripping or entertaining. 34 X-Wing, PC. LucasArts, 1994. Wing Commander may have been the first space combat game with the look and feel of a flight sim, but X-Wing took the ball and ran. One of the most compelling games of the time. In the words of Ewan McGregor, it's f**ckin' Star Wars! 33 SimCity, PC. Maxis & Brderbund, 1989. No armies to build, no enemy to vanquish, SimCity brought a whole new flavour to gaming - and a whole lot of new gamers. This game was pure city building and management, with fun twists like disasters and plagues messing up your careful planning. Developers have always struggled to get women hooked on games, and this was an early success, with girlfriends all over the world kicking their geek-guys off the computer to manage city after city. Add to that the sheer replayability of the game and you have an instant classic that has stood the test of time. And of course, since then, we've had copycat games such as SimLife and SimEarth. And now, The Sims. 32 Metal Gear Solid, PlayStation. Konami & KCEO, 1998. Dripping with style and remarkably challenging and stealthy gameplay, Metal Gear Solid is a seminal PlayStation title that deserves a place in most people's collections. Ported to PC in 2001, Metal Gear Solid casts you as the improbably named Solid Snake on a mission to save the world. 31 Command & Conquer, PC. Westwood Studios & Virgin Interactive, 1995. How could anyone forget the first time they took a NOD soldier down with one shot from the commando's sniper rifle? These classic moments and the hidden depth in this simple game make it a milestone in real-time strategy gaming. 30 Street Fighter 2, Arcade. Capcom, 1991. Not only did Street Fighter 2 re-invent the arcade game overnight, but it also spawned a far more entertaining pastime - trying to work out just what it was your angry warriors were yelling at one another. "Riker! Riker." "A toolkit!" Led to 3D platform fighters on consoles such as Tekken, Virtua Fighter and Dead or Alive. And there's all that nonsense you talked swapping moves with your buddies on the phone 29 Wing Commander, PC. Origin, 1990. X-Wing may have polished the genre, but Wing Commander is without a doubt the grand-daddy of SF flight sims. It had features that similar games today still lack - a branching campaign, self-improving wingmen and mostly witty banter between pilots. 28 Elite, c64. David Braben & Ian Bell, 1985. People have lost months of their lives to this insidious game of interstellar trading and combat, playing it in shifts to earn enough credits for that next engine upgrade or that new weapons turret. Though the wireframe graphics are dated now, Elite pushed the boundaries of realism during its day. 27 Counter-Strike, PC. Valve Software & Sierra, 2000. Originally released as a user-made modification to Sierra's Half Life, this team-based shooter inspired by modern small-unit warfare quickly became the single most played game on the Net, beating not only Half Life itself, but Quake III, Unreal Tournament and everything else that has come along since. The mod was so popular that Sierra redeveloped it in-house, hiring in the process the mod's creator, Minh 'Gooseman' Le, and released it as a retail game. Now we're waiting for a single-player game, Condition Zero. All mod-makers aspire to such popularity. 26 Star Control 2, PC. Accolade, 1992. Chock full of character and featuring colourful graphics and storyline, Star Control let you build a star empire from the comfort of your own computer. It had a complex plot, interesting aliens and a truly wicked sense of humour. 25 Zork: The Great Underground Empire, APPLE II & TRS-80. Infocom, 1980. The game that made text-based roleplaying a hit - you had to draw your own maps with pen and paper to have any chance at all. Zork was basically a very big, complex choose-your-own adventure, dripping with atmosphere and humour. "You have been eaten by a grue." 24 System Shock, PC. Origin & Looking Glass Studios, 1994. Alone on a starship, surrounded by enemies and plagued by an insane AI - and that's just the beginning of your troubles. System Shock looked like a shooter, played like an RPG and scared the pants off you on a regular basis. 23 Curse of Monkey Island, PC. LucasArts, 1997. Cartoony graphics, outrageous pirates, witty riddling contestsand monkeys. Really, what more do you want in an adventure game? This was LucasArts proving that it was more than just a Star Wars spin-off. 22 Wipeout 2097, PlayStation. Psygnosis, 1996. One of the must-own titles for the PlayStation and proof that style and substance could co-exist in a game. What's more, racing the hovercars was wicked. The second in the series, Wipeout 2097 also featured a soundtrack with some of the best electronic acts of the time, like The Prodigy and Aphex Twin. 21 Super Mario 64, N64. Nintendo, 1996. The little Italian plumber has been around for years, but we reckon this is the title that made him a household name. Super Mario 64 features some of the most beautifully realised worlds ever seen in gaming. Took platform gaming to a new - hree-dimensional - level. 20 Halo, Xbox. Bungie & Microsoft, 2001. Yeah, we know, this is a way high position for such a new game, but Halo really deserves the gong. The title to own on the Xbox, it features jaw-dropping graphics, a thrilling plot and a simply awesome orchestral soundtrack. 19 Age of Empires 2: The Age of Kings, PC. Microsoft & Ensemble Studios, 1999. The creators of Age of Empires 2 took the original recipe - gritty historical detail and real time strategy - and fixed all of the niggly problems to create one of the most-played online strategy games of all time. 18 Deus Ex, PC. Ion Storm, Austin & Eidos, 2000. Developer Ion Storm may have closed its doors, but it left quite a legacy in the shape of Deus Ex. Every level of this gritty cyberpunk adventure could be beaten in a different way - stealthy players could sneak around, while run-and-gun fans could blow away everything they saw. And it had a great story. 17 The Bard's Tale, C64. Interplay & Electronic Arts, 1985. The Bard's Tale series let players create a party of characters and then unleash them on an unsuspecting world. This is the game that got a lot of pen and paper roleplayers hooked on computers. 16 Tetris, C64. Spectrum Holobyte, 1986. You know, it really doesn't sound like a compelling game - fitting tumbling coloured blocks into neat rows - but the addiction factor of Tetris cannot be underestimated. It's a sure reminder that sometimes the simplest ideas are the most entertaining. This game has gone to nearly every possible platform, and has spawned more copycats than any other title. 15 EverQuest, PC. 989 STUDIOS, Verant Interactive & Sony Online, 1999. They don't call it EverCrack for nothing. By all accounts this is the most addictive of online games, and therefore one of the most popular of all MMORPGs, and one of the harbingers that the genre is here to stay. Join a guild and fight dragons or become a thief... Everquest lets you play a variety of fantasy characters along with thousands of people around the world. 14 Pong, Arcade. Atari, 1972. Black-and-white electronic ping-pong? It's the player versus player element that makes online gaming so popular today; in a way, Pong is the ancestor of modern games like Counter-Strike and Unreal Tournament. Bleep, bloop-bloop, bleep. 'Nuff said. 13 Duke Nukem 3D, PC. 3D Realms & GT Interactive, 1996. There were better-looking games at the time, and plenty more challenging as well. But few had a hero like Duke Nukem. Before this, action game heroes were characterless life support systems for big guns, but Duke had verve and charisma - and that's putting it nicely. 12 Myst, Macintosh. Cyan & MINDSCAPE, 1994. A groundbreaking adventure game, Myst showed you didn't need violence to have a hit. Intricate puzzles and involved plot aside, it simply looked and sounded like no game before it. 11 Warcraft 2, PC. Blizzard Entertainment, 1995. Blizzard took the best from the original Warcraft, added a lot more units, sea combat and more of the wacky humour that made the first one so much fun. Not only was Warcraft 2 a great fantasy strategy game in its own right, but it set the standard for game sequels. 10 Tomb Raider, PlayStation. Eidos Interactive, 1996. Is there any better-known woman in gaming? (If you said Carmen Sandiego, slap yourself now.) Lara Croft single-handedly defined how a third-person action game should play, introducing gameplay elements - tight camera system, excellent control scheme and level design - that are now standard in most titles. 9 Ultima SERIES, PC. Origin & Blue Sky Productions, 1992. A year before Doom entranced us, Ultima Underworld: The Stygian Abyss did more or less the same with a lot more style and content: first-person 3D views, real world physics and full immersion in the environment. The great thing was that Ultima was an RPG, not a shooter. It let people pretend to be rabbit-bartering-Elves in the privacy of their own homes. Then in 1997, Ultima Online became one of the first Massively Multiplayer Online Games. Still going strong today, it changed the face of Internet gaming. 8 StarCraft, PC. Blizzard Entertainment, 1998. Tough Terran marines, enigmatic Protoss and bug-like Zerg. Starcraft did away with the us-versus-them style of strategy gaming, presenting three races in an involving story of invasion and alien subjugation. And the cut-scenes were pretty good too But Starcraft's lasting legacy is the thriving community of online gamers that it fostered. Blizzard's BattleNet service is still going strong. 7 Final Fantasy VII, PlayStation. Squaresoft, 1997. Arguing with gamers about the best Final Fantasy release is like debating your favourite Star Wars movie - let's just call it a difficult discussion that has an obvious conclusion, whichever side you're on. Like The Empire Strikes Back, Final Fantasy VII has a winning combination of flashy effects, perky characters and fantastic plot This was epic roleplaying at its melodramatic best: it was a four-disc game with a plot that makes War and Peace look simple. 6 Space Invaders, Arcade. Taito, 1978. It was this game that turned the local fish and chip into a den of teen scum and gaming villainy. As addictive as it was simple, Space Invaders was so popular it even spawned a one-hit wonder single of the same name. The table-top version deserves a special mention for putting two players face-to-face - something few other arcade games have done. And of course, following in its footsteps were such greats as Galaga. 5 Diablo, PC. Blizzard Entertainment, 1996. Diablo is still a hell of a lot fun, even in its original form. Whether you call it dungeon-bashing or racially motivated home-invading - the beasties you're killing have lives, too - Diablo is the benchmark for adventure gaming on the PC. Of course, saving the town of Tristram from the demon Diablo may not have been enough, if the sequel is anything to go by. 4 Quake & QUAKE II, PC. id Software & GT Interactive, 1996. Quake and its sequels created a new genre. Light on plot, but heavy on the action, Quake threw gamers against an evil entity seeking to overthrow Earth. Plot aside, Quake was scare central. And music by NIN didn't hurt either. Then came Quake II: real time lighting, excellent graphics and white-knuckle gameplay are just the start. The Quake II 3D engine made more money than its host, being licensed for re-use in dozens of games. The code in the popular Half-Life is basically QII code, which in turn spawned the groundbreaking, phenomenally popular Counter-Strike. Without Quake II, the gaming world would be a very different place. 3 Sid Meier's Civilisation, PC. Microprose, 1991. Games don't get much more epic than this: start out with a Stone Age tribe and set out to conquer the globe or win the space race - whichever comes first. There have been numerous versions of Civ over the years, but they all draw on the painstaking detail and playability of this classic piece of gaming. 2 Half-Life, PC. Valve Software & Sierra, 1998. When it came out, Half Life looked great and played like the best first-person shooter ever, but where it really broke ground was in the intricate plotting of the game, and the way Gordon Freeman - the game's lead character - interacted with that plot. Few FPSes since then have had such a sense of story. 1 DOOM, PC. Id software & GT Interactive, 1993. Let's count the ways this game made history. Doom was the first real big game download - people stayed up nights watching their over-worked modems download this gem. It had atmosphere that could make a grown gamer shriek like a 10-year-old. The coding was so good that, even on the old modem networks of ten years ago, Doom played better than some games designed for cable Internet. And it was just fun, running around blasting demons with a shotgun, desperately looking for that next stash of shells. Sound, music, graphics and gameplay all merged together to give gamers the biggest adrenaline rush possible in front of their computers.