Top 100 All-Time Adventure Games

That’s an interesting read. I can’t really argue with their comprehensive definition too much, particularly the three characteristics they use to define an adventure game. However, I think they’re pushing the third characteristic–exploration–to the breaking point when trying to apply it to a game like Portal 2. It’s a very linear game, and the extent of the “exploring” is limited to inspecting each puzzle room that the player must escape from.

I agree. Still, some escape-the-room games have been considered adventure games, like “Gobliiins” or “Samorost 2”. Limiting the exploration to the current room doesn’t seem to be per se a sufficient characteristic to not consider the game an adventure game.

If the process of searching the room reveals elements of the story, I can see categorizing it as an adventure game in that case, since you are exploring your admittedly small environment–not simply manipulating a puzzle from the inside. With Portal 2, you’re only manipulating the puzzle from the inside.

I am a bit ashamed that I did not play Grim Fandango. Currently I am trying to brainwash myself into believing I like the graphics. “I love art deco… I love noir… I love art deco…”. It’s delicious. I am already starting to believe it.

What’s interesting about Gabriel Knight 2 is that I don’t remember a single puzzle, and yet my memory is one of the best games I played. So immersive. The cheesy aspect did not bother me the slightest. The atmosphere works, the story works. The acting is good enough not to break it.

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I would never torture myself in that way. :smiley:

If you don’t like those features, why should you play something that doesn’t inspire you?

Because I think if I can pass that initial barrier, the story and puzzles will be good. :slight_smile:

The story is very good but the puzzles are not that memorable. I played both “Grim Fandango” and “Day of the Tentacle” about the same quantity of times and I can remember many puzzles from the latter and just a few from the first one.

“Grim Fandango” is definitely not a game that I would suggest mainly for its puzzles. It’s the story, the settings and the art that makes it a wonderful experience. The same goes for “The Longest Journey”: its strength is in the narrative.

My two favourite adventures are, definitely: The Secret of Monkey Island and Grim Fandango.

As a quick, simple exercise I have taken six top tens of adventure games created by popular sources and I have counted how many times a specific game has been cited.

This should represent a wider opinion about what people and critics perceive to be the best adventure games.


  • Rock Paper Shotgun
  • WhatCulture .com
  • AdventureGamers .com
  • Ranker (ranked user opinions)
  • Shacknews
  • WatchMojo


  • Cited 6 times: “Grim Fandango”

  • Cited 5 times: “Day of the Tentacle”

  • Cited 4 times: “Monkey Island 2: Lechuck’s Revenge”

  • Cited 3 times:

    • “Broken Sword: the Shadow of the Templars”
    • “Full Throttle”
    • “Sam & Max Hit the Road”
    • “The Longest Journey”
    • “The Secret of Monkey Island”
    • “Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis”
  • Cited 2 times:

    • “Blade Runner”
    • “Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers”
    • “Myst”
    • “The Curse of Monkey Island”
    • “The Last Express”

It seems that the preference for “Grim Fandango” is quite common among the critics.

The list is bonkers.

It’s easy to name five, ten or even twenty of the best adventures but putting together a solid top 100, takes some time (research, replaying, balancing), even if you interpret adventures in a broader way (which i would recommend). I think the ranking is less important than being in the list and offering some valuable information about potentially interesting games.

Why don’t you use all this energy to create a Thimbleweed Park Top 100 adventure games list? This forum should have enough expertise to come up with something good.

Tastes are different and I’m fine with Grim Fandango on top. But I wonder why would Someone put MI1 before MI2? IMHO MI2 is better in every regard. One thing MI1 did was introducing us to the series, but is this important?

True. Not having Zak in a top 100 best of list is not acceptable!

Yes, it’s a very diverse list and every game there is at least a good game.

Oh but there are people who like it cheesy! I could also imagine some may have fallen in love with the main character :slight_smile:

Not me! :laughing:

For me it sounded that the list was/should be a “final/ultimate” one. :slight_smile:

Where should I start? :slight_smile: Just to name quick a few reasons:

  • MI1 introduced several new elements, like the sword fighting. MI2 reused some of the elements like the “I-have-to-go-to-the-next-island” principle. Even the spitting contest wasn’t that unique.
  • I liked the puzzles in MI1 much more, they were more clever integrated with the story.
  • In MI2 you can see that the graphics are scaled down and that the resolution is obvious too low for all the details. In some screens there are parts with a “puree of pixels” on the screen. So I like the backgrounds in MI1 much more.
  • The story in MI1 is much better, more thrilling and more clever constructed as the one in MI2.
  • MI1 is much more funnier as MI2 (just think about the Grog, Stan and the cannibals!).
  • In MI1 we had brilliant witty new and unique characters like Stan or the Voodoo lady. (In part 2 they are - surprise - back.)

Note that this is my own opinion and it’s OK if you like MI2 more. :slight_smile: If you/one would like to discuss this further, we should start a new thread (or send me a PM). :slight_smile:

Exactly :slight_smile:

Monkey Island as a series introduced a lot of nice things, but I wouldn’t prefer some part just because it introduced something the first time.

But you listed a lot of other points like story, graphic style and puzzles so you clearly prefer MI1, which is fine :slight_smile:

The spitting contest is still a great puzzle!!!

It’s that diversity that makes me think that the list is less influenced by people being fan of games of a specific software house or developer or period of time but, again, it’s still the result of personal opinions. The only difference is that the kind of personal opinions you collect among fans of X will be probably skewed towards X or things somewhat connected to X.

You can see this phenomenon in AdventureGamers forum too: their active users waited for and discussed Thimbleweed Park just as any other adventure, they didn’t attribute to it a special value only because it was made by a specific developer. That’s why I think TWP will probably win the Aggie awards for 2017, but I’m not sure that it will win also the people choice award.

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I would contribute to a new thread about this topic, because my position on this matter is that I consider MI2 a better game, but I like MI1 more for “sentimental” reasons.

It might be interesting to me to understand how much my preference for MI1 is actually a consequence of nostalgia and how much I consider it a good game from a game design point of view. I’ve never asked myself this question.

I don’t do this either. :slight_smile: But if you reuse something, you shouldn’t just “copy”. A good example is Legend of Kyrandia: The three games are connected but the developers had tried to write a unique story for each game. In MI2 you have nearly the same story as in MI1: Get reputation as pirate (back), solve the puzzle from the Voodoo Lady, defeat LeChuck, get Elaine (back).

Of course. MI2 is a great game! (But MI1 is a little bit “greater” :wink: )

Maybe they should just remove the numbering. So it’s just a list of the X best adventure games.

Then open up a new thread. :slight_smile:

This is an interesting question in general: Do we think that the/some of the old LucasArts games are better just as a consequence of nostalgia? (Sounds like we need another new thread… :wink: )

I am perplexed by you needing to ask this question.

As suggested, I have replied in a new topic :slight_smile: