A Great Original must be either a video or a computer game that creates an entirely new type of gameplay, or it must be the first successful game of a type to make a given play mechanic work. Preferably, they should also continue to stand up to this day.

(By no means is this an all-inclusive list. More will be added later. Please send any corrections via primate msg through Chatterbox.)

Pioneered the Roguelike genre. Invented randomized dungeons and the “identification” item system.

Started the “Falling Blocks” puzzle genre, and much copied even to this day.

Colossal Cave
Everyone knows this one. Colossal Cave was the original text adventure.

Zork (or maybe Dungeon)
The first text adventure that allowed the user to converse with the game in full sentences.

Lode Runner
One of the great early puzzle games. Was the first game to offer the user a level creation utility.

The first explore-the-maze computer role-playing game, these types tend to stick close to their Dungeons and Dragons roots. The Bard’s Tale and the Might and Magic series owe a lot to this game.

ToeJam and Earl
Took Roguelike concepts and applied them to a hilarious console game, but is really special for its two-player mode.

Super Mario Brothers
Originated many concepts that are now taken for granted. This was the first scrolling run-and-jump platform game. (Also known as a guy game.)

The Legend of Zelda
The first game to successfully marry the concepts of an action game, an adventure game and a roleplaying game. Originated the concept of making the player search a large world for secrets to raise his “level.” (Heart containers in the original, Pieces of Heart in later installments.)

Adventure (Atari 2600)
The first video adventure game, period.

The great arcade slash-fest. Extremely well-designed and allowing up to four players to fight at once. The idea of enemy generators was a creation of genius.

An utterly unique combination of Missile Command and Tetris that, when considered at a distance, is really nothing like either game. Has a unique three-player mode in some arcade configurations which overshadows even the brilliant solo mode.

Herzog (MSX)
Few remember this one. Predates Dune II in the real-time strategy genre by some years. Beloved cult favorite Herzog Zwei, for the Sega Genesis, is better known than this and also predates Dune II.

In addition to having a storyline that qualifies as real science-fiction, Starflight used a fractal algorithm to generate the galaxy star map and planet surfaces on the fly.

Karate Champ
Karate Champ was the first person-to-person fighting game with an emphasis on competition between actual human opponents as opposed to CPU-controlled drones. It is the predecessor of Street Fighter and its innumerable clones.

Wolfenstein 3D
It may be predated by Softdisk's Catacombs (programmed by the same people), but it was Wolf 3D that really showed people what was possible and created the first-person-shooter genre.

Street Fighter 2
The first decent fighting game. It had a choice of characters (variety is the spice of life, and also the reason why Street Fighter itself isn't the great original game here.), most of whom had unique moves and styles of fighting. There were 'circle' fighters and 'charge' fighters, and the ever hated '360' character, Zangief. Oh... how the days go by.

Ultima Online
This is the first graphic MMORPG to get a following huge enough to piss off all of it's customers. It was a lot of fun to play, honestly. It was just the people that killed it for me (and now, it wasn't the fact that they were killing me in it that killed it for me).

Honestly. Never before and hardly ever again would we ride chickens with the flap button and push each other to the phoenix.

River City Ransom
To my knowledge, the only game to mix a side scrolling beat em up game with RPG and adventure elements and have the result be enjoyable (Knights of the Round my ass, you didn't have to find the best seafood, you just 'kinda' went up levels. Basically, you got neet clothes if you killed extra lots of people. In RCR you have to find all the bosses, not to mention eat a lot of steak and oatmeal cookies.) It's also the best game on the NES. It cannot be contested. It's still fun today.

Hasn't anyone played Pitfall for Atari 2600? Although the screen didn't scroll as in SMB, it was the same concept, made far earlier. You spent time running, jumping, etc. Pitfall 2 expanded on this with a game surprisingly large for an atari.

Also, i think SimAnt was one of the big precursors of the Starcraft/Warcraft/TA games. It is very primitive, but the gather resources-lead an army-build a base theme was defined there for the first time I'd seen it. There were even different unit types = workers, soldiers, etc... The main limit was you could control only one ant at a time.

And you cant forget civilization 1... I think the oldest game i still play on a regular basis.

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.