Top 10 Best Video Game Series of All Time

The Top Ten
1 The Legend of Zelda

Zelda is easily one of the most iconic game series of all time. It's practically been there since video games were even a thing. Zelda easily outshines Mario and Pokémon.

This was the best video game series 25 years ago and will still be the best video game series 100 years from now. It has set records and has changed the video game industry for the better. I love the gameplay, the depth of the story, the characters, and Hyrule. I mean, what's not to love? It's so good that even Robin Williams named his daughter after it. I don't see anyone calling their child Call of Duty. The best thing about Zelda games is that there's a Zelda game for every person of every age. From catching fairies before you battle bosses to acquiring the Master Sword, everything you do in the land of Hyrule seems satisfying. If you haven't played this game, I definitely recommend it.

Well, I posted a few weeks ago, but today I decided that I should continue with my ranting. Last time, I elaborated on the graphics of this extraordinary series, but that was just the tip of the iceberg. This time, I will dig in deeper and look at the items that set Zelda apart from other series.

If you look at other games of any genre, items are a huge part of the game. However, these crucial parts of the experience are not utilized to their fullest. In many major RPGs, for example, items and spells are used in exactly the same way but with different stats being the only thing separating them. In shooters, items are all a bit different, but all they do is kill people in different ways.

In The Legend of Zelda, all of the items you find are unique. With a hookshot, you can swing to faraway cliffs and obtain faraway items. With a bow, you can hit far-off targets, burn things, freeze things, and much more. Look up "Zelda Items" in a search engine, and you will find that I'm not even scratching the surface, more like gingerly prodding it with a long stick from the safety of a tall, tall tower. But it's how you use the items that truly sets this game apart from others. Often, when faced with a problem, you must utilize your items in abstract and imaginative ways. Lightbulb moments include realizing that you have to fire your bow through a lit torch to light the unlit one on the other side. And a truly exceptional touch that you discover in Majora's Mask, involving the Ice Arrows, which I won't elaborate on here, or on any other of Zelda's ingenious solutions to problems, as robbing newcomers of those other sparks of awesomeness would be a truly heinous crime. Those who have experienced them, though, will know what I am talking about.

I have a lot more which I have to say about the series, though, and if I have any spare time over the next month, I will in good time. Expect a similar-sized gap as the one between now and my last comment.

2 Super Mario Bros.

Why isn't this No. 1? Mario is the series that defines Nintendo. It brought a revolution to platformers and to 3D adventures. Who wouldn't like going into pipes that warp you to different places? Who wouldn't like defeating an army of dinosaur-like tortoises and potato-heads to save their "special one"? And who wouldn't like exploring the galaxies to collect power stars to travel to the center of the universe? Super Mario Bros., Bros. 3, World, Land, 64, Kart, Sunshine, Galaxy, Mario Party, and New Super Mario Bros. Wii are some of the greatest games of all time. What's left to say? It's better than Zelda!

Mario is my favorite video game franchise of all time. It's childhood: the game. The games are AMAZING times well spent, unlike a certain blue hedgehog *cough* *cough*. Make this number 1. Super Mario for number 1!

As much as I love Zelda, Pokémon, Smash Bros., Kirby, and others, Mario will always be the best. Without Mario, 99% of the series on this list would not exist. Mario got me into video games in the first place and continues to keep me playing. He wears many hats, from plumber to doctor to Olympian to referee to teacher. Although Zelda may hold the top spot for some time, I believe Mario will always be the more fun and diverse of the two.

3 Pokemon

I love playing with my Pokémon. Scarlet and Violet's picnic feature is the best addition to Pokémon that I didn't even know I wanted. I also like the 'Let's Go' feature.

Pokémon has been my favorite game series, other than Call of Duty, for years. The first game I played was Pokémon Black, and it set me off on the whole Pokémon franchise. My second Pokémon game was Pokémon Platinum, which could have been better, but it was still great. Not to mention, my first shiny was on it, which was a shiny Ponyta.

Then I played Pokémon White 2, which was amazing in how it continued the storyline of Black. I was so surprised and happy it turned out that well. Following that, I got Pokémon X, and so far, it is my favorite because it is so good. I love Xerneas, and Mega Evolution boosted the game's coolness way higher.

Then Omega Ruby came out, and I didn't know what to think about it at first. It was good, but the beginning of the game didn't have much of a storyline. Soon I will be getting Pokémon Sun and Moon.

4 Super Smash Bros.

All the games in this series are just so entertaining to watch and play. 64 really set a good standard and had a lot of potential. Melee was just a competitive masterpiece, though not as perfect casually. Brawl's Subspace Emissary is a masterpiece, with good gameplay but struggles competitively, yet has really good casual gameplay. Smash 4 continued with engaging gameplay and good extra modes, and Ultimate, in my opinion, is the best overall with extremely good casual and competitive gameplay, along with super good side modes. Overall, a great series that almost anyone can enjoy.

Every gamer's dream come true. A Nintendo fan's ultimate dream. Mario, Link, Pikachu, Samus, Kirby, Sonic, Pac-Man, Sans, Minecraft Steve, Cloud, Mega Man, and Cuphead all are in the SAME GAME and can all beat each other up. The fact that Sakurai managed to create an epic crossover of this proportion is magnificent. Literally, the best games I've ever played.

5 Grand Theft Auto

The ability to travel ANYWHERE you want, carry a load of weapons, take any vehicle from a bike, exotic sports car to a military jet... and graphics only Rockstar can excel at in its time... with the latest Grand Theft Auto V making sales of over $1 billion dollars in its first week... along with San Andreas, Vice City, etc., making the top 5 on many 'Greatest Game of All Time' lists (e.g., IGN)... Best series in video game history.

Probably one of the best series out there, Grand Theft Auto is one of the most realistic.

But in the end, Grand Theft Auto > Sonic, come at me.

I have no idea how this is 3rd last. This game has revolutionized the world of gaming with its "open world" concept and it should be much closer to 1st.

6 Final Fantasy

Not only are the stories great, but the heroes, villains, and gameplay are too. Each game is different from the last in terms of environment and storyline, with the exception of X and XI, so everyone can find something they love about this amazing series.

The amazing stories and characters that have appeared in this series over the years need to be remembered. They are all part of the greatest video game series ever to appear in this world and Midgar.

The Final Fantasy series has the best storylines in all of gaming history. It's just unbelievable how well-written it is. This deserves to be number 1!

7 Assassin's Creed

Where to begin? Some people complain that the gameplay has gotten boring, but then again, that is always only one side of this gaming series, and the true gem of Assassin's Creed is the story and what it allows us to do. Running around in history, killing off actual historical figures, while performing parkour on buildings and stealthily or brutally taking down your foes. This is something amazing that sets this gaming series apart from most others out there and makes it unique. I will always treasure this series.

By far one of the most unique big franchises out there, I can think of no one else who does what Assassin's Creed (AC) does. It immerses you in a historical open world with core gameplay consisting of sword fighting, stealth, and parkour. And it's surprising how well all of these elements work together.

Video games, for me, are about experiencing things that would be otherwise impossible in the real world. AC nails that for me. It allows me to explore cultures, cities, and experience unique atmospheres that once did, but no longer exist. I can feel the great sense of freedom that I love as I fly across rooftops, admiring the beautiful city below and beyond. I can solve problems and feel achievement through stealth, and find satisfaction and awesomeness through sword fighting, which I find to be far less monotonous than shooting.

I'm not interested in repetitive and aimless gunfights (granted, tactical shooters unlike Call of Duty can be very exciting), or doing nothing but watching skyscrapers fly by as you sit in an everyday car running over civilians (like in Grand Theft Auto), or running around generic fantasy lands and killing magical monsters (a lot of highly praised games like The Witcher 3 fall into this category).

Even if AC games aren't always executed to their full potential (and God knows they have so much), and hence don't receive the best reviews, I know that Assassin's Creed is still one of the most unique franchises out there, daring to do things that nobody else does. Nowadays, the highly rated AAA games are always the same thing, as listed in the previous paragraph, and so it's really refreshing to see something like AC, with such an amazingly cohesive and unique concept that has so much potential. No other developer dares to challenge AC because of it.

8 Metal Gear Solid

The only reason why this isn't ranked number 1 is that most voters here have only played the newer game series, like Call of Duty, for example. They don't know what the Metal Gear Series is capable of. Friends dying in front of you, crushed by a gigantic robot T-Rex. An old friend battling cancer. A sister who died because of a vampire psychopath. A mentor killed by her own student. A man-made spy near death because of rapid aging but still able to save the world and finally killing his own brother. Sometimes, it's not about the gameplay that makes a game great, but the drama and the storyline that can be talked about for almost forever.

Just the storyline alone should put this game in the top 3 or 4. It's my all-time personal favorite, so it would be my #1 choice. Hideo Kojima is an absolute genius, and I salute him not only for making great games but for crafting storylines and characters that one can easily become emotionally attached to. His games are like movies that keep me on the edge of my seat and leave me praying that he'll make just one more. The replay value of these games is tremendous. They are always chock-full of Easter eggs and side stories. MGS revolutionized stealth gameplay and is in a league of its own. I believe that if anyone plays a game from this series, it will easily be in their top 5 favorites.

9 Uncharted

This game is much better than most games in the top ten. Call of Duty deserves to be in the bottom 50. Yes, I know a lot of people are going to say, Look at the sales and pre-order numbers. They're only really high because a lot of gamers are really stupid in the games they buy. They love nothing more than a non-original story, gameplay that isn't evolving, multiplayer that's the same every year, and developers and publishers that only care about the money. These facts are undeniably true, and some gamers can't take the time to appreciate the love and care put into games like the story in Mass Effect, the adventure in Skyrim, the combat depth in God of War, and the explosive action in Uncharted. Basically, what I'm saying is that gamers these days are becoming so one-dimensional and that they need to expand their horizon of games they play.

This deserves to be number one, hands down. Nathan Drake gives us a swaggering, laid-back protagonist who can crack small jokes to lighten the mood in any setting. This is a new perspective on the action-adventure genre that has the perfect balance between action sequences and heart-wrenching parkour/survival parts that will leave you on the edge of your seat.

Added to this masterpiece are the puzzles left for you, the gamer, to solve. Choosing wrong will lead to failure, but when you figure it out, there is always more action to make up for all the time spent on figuring out the puzzle. Uncharted 3 gives us another viewpoint as the young Nathan Drake, starting his life of thievery. Seeing Nathan grow up gives us another reason to cheer him on.

Uncharted 2 is incredible, with intense sequences that include everything a gamer wants. They all come together in the Nathan Drake Collection, a jaw-dropping, remastered edition of all the games in the series. Nathan Drake will most likely leave us in Uncharted 4: A Thief's End, an end to a remarkable journey, as we say one last goodbye to the legendary Nathan Drake. This series has redefined gaming with an experience that is nothing short of amazing.

Mario and Zelda are just pixelated originals. They have no great story, their heroes act in a generic, selfless way. Nathan Drake acts like a real human, with real flaws, but a good heart. Games these days are based on violence. Halo, Grand Theft Auto, Call of Duty, The Elder Scrolls, and Assassin's Creed are games of pure killing and fighting. Uncharted mixes violence with story and adventure for a perfect game series that will forever be the best.

10 The Elder Scrolls

Put it this way: When you've got a game series that gets things so right the first time that all you have to do to make a sequel is improve the graphics and update the game mechanics a little, you've got something special. Every Elder Scrolls game in the series has consistently trounced its competition to the point that the Elder Scrolls series has become the definitive RPG series of late. I'm surprised this isn't higher on the list!

This is such a clear choice to me. Excluding the early titles (Daggerfall/Arena), there has not been a poor title. Every single one of the TES games has pushed the envelope of what we expect from an RPG. I only ever liked one Zelda game, the first one. Mario has forever been a 2D platformer (even when he went 3D, he still felt like yesteryear's platformer), and I don't think I've ever spent more than 30 hours on any AC game. Every AC/Zelda/Mario game is cookie-cutter. They all feel the same. Play Morrowind, then play Skyrim, and tell me how similar they are to you. My point is that Bethesda is a company whose body of work screams quality over quantity, while this list appears to (inaccurately) be ranking the other way.

The Contenders
11 Halo

Zelda above this, I get it. Zelda is just the dream of any gamer. But Mario, Grand Theft Auto, Pokémon? I mean, yes, they are GREAT games, but Halo is fantastic, majestic, perfect, and every word with a positive connotation that exists. There was a time when I just wanted to go to my friends' house in high school to play Halo. I no longer cared about my friends - don't misunderstand me, it's not that I didn't care about them - but the game captivated me subconsciously in a way that I was totally hypnotized by it. I'm sure many can relate to what I'm saying. When Halo 2 and 3 came out, those were some really crazy times. There will never be days as good as those, and you know it. I think I even had dreams about Halo back then. In some way, I still do.

Girls Locker Room: Words.
Boys Locker Room: Halo Theme Song.

In all seriousness, though, Halo is one of the few first-person shooter franchises that stands out from the rest. The only other game franchise I would consider as being more influential would be Doom. Every single Halo game is in the same connected universe, and events in one game affect another. The difficulty is on point (except for Halo 2's), and the gameplay has inspired nearly every single FPS that came after it. The days of 3 and Reach were the golden days of online play. Custom games and Forge helped Halo stand out. Moreover, every single Halo gun is unique and iconic to the franchise. It has been going through a bit of a falter, but every game franchise hits this point at some time. With Reach on PC being a huge hit and Halo: Infinite on the way (albeit with no gameplay shown), here's hoping Halo can take the top spot once again.

12 Sonic

Sonic is a series sold for its protagonist and world. I can honestly say that Sonic has no games that feel perfect - there are those that come close, sure. SA2 and Generations are both fantastic games. But what really makes those two great?

Three things: the characters (which are perfectly voice acted in both games and have their characters perfectly designed), the music (which is some of the best in the series), and the content (both games have a large amount of post-game content in the form of level missions).

If you are reading this, Sega, work on THESE. The Sonic fanbase is extremely forgiving of poorer graphics, dodgy stories, and terrible cutscenes, but these elements will make or break a game for most Sonic fans.

Sonic is actually one of the best video game series of all time. Sonic tries something new with each game, while Mario usually uses the same old tactics and tries something new not too often. In fact, at one point, Sonic was better than Mario. Sonic started the 16-bit era and has held gaming up along with other series. Sonic is very special to many people, including me, and should be higher on this list.

13 Mass Effect

Truly the best game series I have ever played (with maybe The Elder Scrolls in contention). The story is fantastic, immersing you in a universe filled with aliens, new planets, emerging governments, and a vast cosmos. Despite all this, you still feel like you belong and understand exactly what is happening without any effort, which is a remarkable achievement in gaming.

Additionally, the choices on offer were tremendous and thought-provoking, really making the game feel unique to each player. The true brilliance lies in how every decision carries through the entire series.

The tactics and gameplay were excellent and a refreshing departure from the standard fare of Call of Duty.

I, for one, did not mind the ending after they revised it. I found it to be a fitting conclusion to the game and my Commander Shepard's story.

All in all, I believe this series should be at the top or close to it, and certainly ranked higher than just number 10.

14 Metroid

Metroid is one of the greatest game franchises ever. Why isn't it among the top ten? It's a mystery. Who wouldn't like traveling the cosmos on great adventures, exterminating dangerous species, fighting evil, and putting an end to wars in a way few have rivaled? All the games are thrilling from the start as soon as you land on the surface of a planet/station. "Good luck with the adventures! Explore the way yourself!"

This game series defined my childhood. Super Metroid, Metroid Fusion, Other M, and Metroid Prime were complete masterpieces. The only game that wasn't truly captivating and incredible was Metroid Prime Pinball, but come on - it's a pinball game. I easily rank this as my personal number one.

Yes! Samus was an outstanding hero, even though Zero Suit Samus herself was much more badass, and Ridley is my favorite Nintendo villain, along with King Dedede.

15 Kingdom Hearts

Ah, it's all been said already... This series started out as what some would call a fluke. It was a combination that most people would never have guessed could work. On one hand, Final Fantasy, a game that focuses on telling intricate and (sometimes) messed up stories (FFVII). On the other hand, the Disney series, a series of happy-go-lucky feel-good movies aimed at kids. It should have been a boring game... But it wasn't.

With each game polishing the fighting style more and more, the gameplay - one of the game's strongest points - appeals to button mashers as well as tacticians. The game features an intricate story that spans over many games, each one giving away only a piece of the puzzle, making for one of the longest and most immersive stories ever told in a game.

And let's not forget all the Disney worlds that the game offers, each reliving the old movies in a nostalgic way, coupled with a more mature story. And while the game does not have very realistic graphics, it is very fun to look at.

All in all, this is one of my favorite (if not the favorite) video game series I've ever played. It's a must-play for anyone who likes either Disney or Final Fantasy... or any RPG fan... or anyone who likes action-adventure games... or anyone who likes fun. Just play the game.

16 Kirby

Kirby is cute. All the Kirby games are awesome, except for Kirby's Epic Yarn on the Wii. I wasted 50 dollars on that Kirby's Epic Yarn. The bosses were not challenging enough, and they made King Dedede annoying, which caused my Wii to break. I decided not to play Kirby until Triple Deluxe for the 3DS came out. I realized my friends loved it, and it had Kirby Fighters too, so I got it, and it was so good. When Star Allies came out, it was so cool. And Clash Royale is fun too. It's like Kirby Fighters but with better graphics, and you can play with people online. Anyway, Kirby should be in the top 10.

Honestly, it's insane how consistent in quality this franchise has been over its thirty-year history. Even some of the games that are the weakest of the bunch really aren't that bad. You have to admit that's very impressive for a game series, especially one that's been going on for 30 years at this point. The games are very fun and are definitely replayable due to the many copy abilities, and they always try to change it up and most of the time, they succeed in making things interesting. Also, Kirby is cute, so bonus points.

17 Bioshock

The Bioshock series is absolutely amazing. The stories are captivating and the graphics make it worthwhile. Bioshock Infinite could easily top my list.

Bioshock consistently excels in its storytelling. Every game is a masterpiece.

One of my favorite games of all time, including Bioshock Infinite, which is such an underrated game!

18 Mortal Kombat

The Mortal Kombat games are EXCELLENT! I can't believe they're not in the top 10, twenty at least! They have a complex storyline for each individual character, amazing graphics (once you get to the newer releases), and are an all-time classic.

Love this. Got 3 of them already! Can't wait for Mortal Kombat 11!

Tremor is the coolest Mortal Kombat character ever!

19 Crash Bandicoot

Currently an official Nintendo character, Mr. Bandicoot and his sister moved from PlayStation to Nintendo GameCube.

I have almost every game in the series. These games are awesome and number 1 in my opinion.

The first video game series I ever played, and still one of the best.

20 Mega Man

How are Kirby, Call of Duty, and Pokémon above this? Mega Man 2 and 3 are better than every Kirby and Call of Duty game ever.

Mega Man is an absolute classic! This game evokes so much nostalgia.

It has revolutionized gaming across the globe, including the hero Mega Man himself!

These games are the best and should remain so even thousands of years from now.

21 Fire Emblem

It started my love of strategy games. It's an interesting change of pace having to rely on tactics and the skills of your people.

When I first played Fire Emblem, I was expecting a boring, unoriginal fantasy RPG that wouldn't try anything new. Instead, I found an incredibly heartbreaking story with fun characters, each with their own personalities and aspirations. Nothing hurts more when a trusted fighter falls on the battlefield. If you're looking to get into JRPGs, I highly suggest Fire Emblem.

It's absolutely awesome to play and just keeps getting better and better. Tons of replay value in the newer games with difficulty settings, multiple storylines, and hilarious support conversations. Not to mention engaging storylines and a diverse cast! Definitely one of the best!

22 Silent Hill

I have only ever seen the Playable Teaser for Silent Hill, simply called PT, which was deleted and removed by Kojima. And even just that told me how good the series was.

I've never played a Silent Hill game in my life, and even I know this should be in the top 20 at least.

This is clearly the best.

23 Resident Evil

Resident Evil keeps getting better and better. Each game is unforgettable, and RE 4 is a perfect game. The creatures, boss battles, and overall awesomeness of this franchise are unsurpassed by any other in the gaming industry.

Resident Evil! Just saying the name makes your ears ring with fear. The series set off the survival horror genre and has been adapting since its debut in 1996. It features great characters, enjoyable stories, and frightful action.

I have only played four and six, but I grew up watching my siblings play these, so... yeah, this should be in the top ten, if not the top five. Just saying.

24 Portal

I love how a game that was initially released as a spinoff of Half-Life went on to create one of the most memorable video game franchises of all time. The first game had only two characters, yet it became a phenomenon with its straightforward story, witty dialogue, and unique puzzle-solving mechanics. The second game only improved upon these aspects. It's a shame Valve can't count to three because I desperately want a third game.

Amazing humor, stunning graphics (especially in the second game, though the first had interesting graphics towards the end), compelling story (although I wish it had reached its full potential), and an excellent touch of horror. Definitely the best series ever. Not to mention it has one of the only bearable fanbases.

Portal is one of the most innovative games of the past decade and, unlike Call of Duty, it requires you to think. Not to mention the incredible humor.

25 Saints Row

Should be in the top 5.

Best game ever.

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