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The top 20 most important games of the decade

Update: We've added links to the high definition version of this video:

Part One (YouTube Link)

Part Two (YouTube Link)

Part Three (YouTube Link)

All week on GamesRadar we've been indulging in a retrospective look back at the last decade in gaming. And now we come to the climax. This is it. The big one. This is our rundown of what we consider to be the most important games of the decade. It's not a list of our *favourite* games, but the games that were released during the last 10 years that have defined, influenced and shaped the industry as we know it. If you're looking for the most momentous, significant games that the noughties had to offer, then this is about as definitive as it gets.

How did we arrive at the final 20? It wasn't easy. A ball-ache even. As gamers we're all precious about the games we love and trying to settle on a list that we were - mostly - all in agreement with involved a fair amount of drinking punctuated with heated debate and impassioned argument. Games were nominated. Games were eliminated. Voices were raised. Panties were tangled. Tears were cried. Still, after a Herculean effort of transatlantic synergy we managed it. And this is it. Enjoy.



January 1, 2010 

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85 comments

  • Kayden - January 4, 2011 8:16 p.m.

    Baldur's Gate 2 should have been in that list! With out it we wouldn't have many of the games that depend on story out there right now that is more then just a few words here and there. It really set the bar for having NPC's be more then just item sellers as well. Huge HUGE mistake to not include this game that set up games like that, I know you had Morrowind but that didn't set the tone for the past decade BG2 did.
  • bren789123 - January 4, 2011 1:46 a.m.

    Why the old video player?
  • jmh1981 - January 8, 2010 11:43 a.m.

    I'd personally move Half-Life 2/Source Engine Mods/Steam Platform up to number 3, overall a great list though. I was surprised to see Braid make the list and agree with it being there for both itself and as a representative of the many good Indie games that have come out, especially in the last few years.
  • ldslindsay - January 6, 2010 3:56 p.m.

    Im a girl
  • ldslindsay - January 6, 2010 3:56 p.m.

    hhhhhhhhheeeeeeeeeyyyyyyyyyyyy! I rock it.
  • FEMINISTBONER - January 6, 2010 10:06 a.m.

    OH AND L4D AND MASS EFFECT
  • FEMINISTBONER - January 6, 2010 10 a.m.

    WHY THE FUCK IS THE FUCKING SIMS ON THIS FUCKING LIST!!!!! AND WHY ISN'T OBLIVION OR GOD OF WAR!!!!
  • bloodyshadow - January 5, 2010 5:41 a.m.

    That was really entertaining. I can't say I disagree with any of these (even though some of them I HATE.) Great job. Chris Anista looked incredibly out of place.
  • mentalityljs - January 5, 2010 3:55 a.m.

    I'm reading a lot of comments about games that didn't make it on the list. Remember ppl, this is an article about the most important, not best, IMPORTANT games of the decade! You know, games that redefined and created genres that are directly responsible for a lot of the games you're mentioning. Although, I'd have to agree that Max Payne, Devil May Cry, and even Little Big Planet should've been on the list.
  • mentalityljs - January 5, 2010 3:33 a.m.

    Awesome article guys! Although I'm not too sure about a few, everything else was pretty much spot on in my opinion. DeusEx FTW!!!
  • AyJay - January 5, 2010 12:58 a.m.

    Mario Galaxy?
  • metalgatesolid - January 5, 2010 12:05 a.m.

    Just thought, dont think Goldeneye was mentioned was it? Ill shut up if it was. But no goldeneye no Timesplitters 2, and that would have been a travesty!!
  • JackSkellingtonsSkin - January 4, 2010 9:40 p.m.

    I don't think Wii Sports or Brain Training will be important in just a few years time. Additionaly I don't think MGS2 or Uncharted 2 are more important than their predecessors, (although they are phenomenal games) in particular Uncharted as most of its gameplay was done by Tomb Raider before it. I think SotC, Super Mario Galaxy and LittleBigPlanet are missing from this list. Also Mirror's Edge (which looks unimportant now) may have created a genre which could become hugely successful if done right.
  • metalgatesolid - January 4, 2010 6:22 p.m.

    Where is Little Big Planet!!??? The first console game to embrace user content??? Now everything wants to copy it. That should be 2nd at least!!!!
  • Evernight - January 4, 2010 4:57 p.m.

    Wow... great list - very well done. Loved the inclusion of Morrowind and I do agree with your #1 spot... although very surprising. My only complaint is that I felt Bioshock was so closely tied to System Shock that it didn't warrant "Most Important Game" status. Also, no KOTOR? or Diablo 2? Would have though those would have made the list.
  • t3rry747 - January 4, 2010 4:05 a.m.

    No Mirrors edge? that really shocks me I understand dead space but really? But I do love the shout out to L.O.Z.W.W Most of the other games make sense though.
  • evilmonkeyturds - January 4, 2010 12:56 a.m.

    To bad one of the Legacy of Kain games didn't make it. For, well, being the one of the firsts to have fantastic voice acting, with spot on sync, and great story. I guess it didn't make it because of Blood Omen and Soul Reaver being released in the nineties.
  • CH3BURASHKA - January 4, 2010 12:26 a.m.

    Mikel sounds 10 years older. Brett looks like Steve Buscemi. George Walter looks younger than he sounded on TR74. Chris is a nerd. Matt Cundy is like the British Charles Onyett. Tyler Wilde has the biggest cheeks ever. Charlie is a hunk. Ever since hearing Eric on the podcast, I figured he had was a hunchback. I was wrong. T-Nag is less fat than I thought. And skyguy is right: A Team ICO game deserved a place on the list for it's impact on gaming's reputation (at least to gamers). Some of the 20-10 games could have easily given up their place for Ico.
  • Scotch - January 3, 2010 9:02 p.m.

    wow that was incredible, great job guys, i know this was no small feat to do also Justin and Brett did a great jub of justifying wii fit

Showing 1-20 of 85 comments

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