5. Nintendo’s “Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out” on NES (1987)
If you couldn’t take out Glass Joe, forget about it. Put down that rectangle controller immediately.
The characters that graced the ring leading up to the big-bad Mike Tyson will never be forgotten, especially Mario as the referee. What’s great about “Mike Tyson’s Punchout” is that anybody can pop it in right now and have one grand-ole’ time.
4. Midway’s “NBA Jam” on Arcade, Genesis, SNES (1993)
If not for “NBA Jam,” there would be no “NBA Street.”
“Is it the shoes? He’s on fire!” So many classic casual hoops terminology was born from NBA Jam that found its way into pop culture. Two-on-two indoor basketball play could never be as fun as it was during the early-to-mid 1990s.
When “NBA Jam Tournament Edition” came out just a short time later and we all learned we could choose from three players instead of just the default two, we all lost our minds.
3. EA Sports’ “Madden NFL 2005” on PS2, Xbox, GameCube (2004)
“EA Sports, it’s in the game.” Ah yes, we finally get to the biggest name in sports video game history. Madden.
Many holier-than-thou individuals will call the Madden series “garbage.” Many will call it “overrated.” And while there have been a few hiccups and poor releases, it’s anything but ordinary.
This series is legendary and some of the editions have produced tremendous gameplay. The top version of ’em all is “Madden NFL 2005,” but not by much. In fact, we only decided to put Madden 2005 in the three spot out of sheer respect for the series and its overall greatness. While this one’s probably still a top 10-15 games, it takes three in representing the entire series.
Two-thousand-five featured Ray Lewis and brought the hit stick to the table and made defensive-football matter again. This has led to more of a simulation feel leading to today’s version. In addition, the Tony Bruno radio voice talking about the happenings within your own franchise was a solid feature.