Reviews Archive

The 100 Best N64 Games

Welcome to Retro-Sanctuary's Top 100 Best N64 games. Now, for anyone new to the site we follow a set of guidelines for all our lists. We aim to represent the best of all genre's, we try to limit the number of sequels included to allow more underrated games to shine, and also tend to avoid games that have been ported from earlier systems that don't use the hardware to its full potential. The best Import games are allowed, but only when they're import friendly and don't require an FAQ to play.

Thanks and enjoy the list!

Iggy's Wrekin' Balls   Iggy's Wrekin Balls
  Kicking off the list we have this odd 2.5D racing game that has you racing a variety of balls around courses of loops and ramps. The only game I can think of to compare it to is the SNES title Uniracers, except here you have a grapple hook to use instead of a focus on doing tricks. The game is a lot of frantic fun on multiplayer with four friends, but the single player experience is a bit lacking.
Mace: The Dark Age   Mace the Dark Age
  This is a 3D fighting game from Midway, the creators of the Mortal Kombat franchise. Mace is a weapons-based fighter which plays like a mixture of Mortal Kombat, and Soul Edge. Its a general combo-based 3D fighter with some nice graphics, competent gameplay, and crowd-pleasing finishing moves.
NHL 99'   NHL 99'
  Smooth Ice Hockey game with good controls, good multiplayer, and lots of fighting. NHL 99 is based on the foundation of the earlier Playstation game NHL 98, but with the gameplay tweaked, graphics improved, and a few of the programming issues ironed out.
Dr Mario 64   Dr Mario 64
  N64 update of the popular NES puzzle game. The aim of Dr Mario is simply to eradicate virus', you do this by placing capsules of the same colour adjacent to them. This iteration is similar to the original, but includes a bunch of new modes. The game is fun to play alone, but the new 4-player mode is the addition that most stands out.
V-Rally 99'   V Rally 99
  This is actually a belated port of the Playstation's first V-Rally game, which was an arcade style rally game in the vein of Sega Rally (rather than one focused on realism). V-Rally was a fun game which offered tons of content and longevity. This port has some alterations to the courses, and some minor tweaks here and there, but overall comes off as inferior to the original in the graphics and audio department unfortunately. All in all its a valid choice for fans of driving games, but the tradeoffs with the Playstation original make it somewhat of a mixed bag.
Gauntlet Legends   Gauntlet Legends on N64
  Here we have another excellent 4-player title, this time its an arcade port of a hack n' slash dungeon crawler RPG, the sequel to the 80s classic, Gauntlet. Gauntlet Legends has you moving through the levels killing monsters, using spells, and leveling up. The main gameplay draw here is the teamwork, and camaraderie of bringing your friends along for the adventure, Its a fun, but brainless title. The N64 version is a good port of the original, much better than the Playstation version (which only supports 2-players), but weaker than the later Dreamcast release, which included some elements from the sequel.
Nuclear Strike   Nuclear Strike
  This is another great release in the "Strike" series of games, a series which started out during the 16-bit era with the release of the popular Desert Strike. Nuclear Strike continues the gameplay style of its predecessors, with you flying around the stages trying to complete objectives and generally just blowing stuff up, its just a fun action focused game. This one also has you controlling a selection of other vehicles, such as Tanks and hovercrafts to give some variety.
F1 World Grand Prix 2   F1 World Grand Prix 2
  Definitely one of the better formula 1 games on the market at the time, F1 World Grand Prix is a polished N64 exclusive. The game looks great, handles extremely well, and does a good job of recreating the depth and precision of the racing sport.
Command & Conquer   Command and Conquer on N64
  A very late port of one of the most important real time strategy games ever made, a title which created huge waves on its original release. C & C has you mining minerals, building up your base, and creating troops to fight against the enemy, its a system pioneered in the earlier game Dune II, but tweaked, and popularised here, which went on to inspire countless other games (Warcraft, Starcraft, KKND etc). To make up for the late arrival this version's graphics have been redone in full 3D, and there's some new N64 specific missions. Unfortunately the lack of mouse control hurts the game a little (as always for console strategy games), and there's no multiplayer support, but its still a fun, in-depth, and interesting game with some decent additions.
Indiana Jones & the Infernal Machine   Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine
  Here's a Tomb Raider-esque action adventure game from Lucasarts. The game has you playing as Indi as he jumps and climbs his way through the levels searching for artifacts, it looks good and plays pretty well too. When originally coming to the PC, Infernal Machine was a clunky, hard to control, and buggy game, luckily however when it came to porting the game to N64 Lucasarts decided to bring in genius German game developers Factor 5 (makers of the Rogue Squadron series) for the job. Factor 5 tightened up and overhauled the controls and pretty much added a new layer of polish to everything, even including some new graphical effects! Overall a very playable Tomb Raider alternative.
Atari ST
Atari VCS
Commodore 64
Master System
Mega Drive
Neo Geo
PC Engine
ZX Spectrum