The Top 10 Games That Defined This Generation of Consoles

February 13, 2020

The eighth generation of consoles is now in its final stages. Both Microsoft and Sony are releasing brand new systems in 2020, which will supplant the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. Of course, the Nintendo Switch will still be part of the previous group of platforms. However, most people see this as the start of a new era. Lots of new games will be arriving in the very near future.

With so many exciting titles on the way, now seems like a great time to look back at the best games from this generation. These are all the titles that everyone should play as they are the truly exceptional examples of the last seven years.

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Mario Kart 8 was a proper return to form for the franchise. Nintendo went back to what worked in the original games to create one of the best kart racers of all time. Initially available in 2014 on the Wii U, it later received a deluxe port to the Nintendo Switch in 2017.

With fantastic courses and a wide array of characters, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe game has everything you could want. There are few games that manage to cause such joy. It remains one of the best games to play with your friends even three years later.

Red Dead Redemption 2

Red Dead Redemption was one of the standout games from the last generation. That meant that any sequel would have high expectations. Rockstar met every one of them with Red Dead Redemption 2.

The huge open world is meticulously detailed and filled with amazing locations and fascinating characters. It is also one of the most life-like games ever, totally engrossing you in the world. The inclusion of a proper online mode adds even more value.


Although Fortnite will not be everyone’s cup of tea, it is arguably the biggest game in the world right now. Since it rose to prominence in 2018, it has gone from strength to strength and cast aside all challengers.

While it may not have been the first battle royale game, it has set the standard for the genre. There are certainly better games but the sheer impact of Epic Game’s hit on the industry deserves recognition. The fact that it is free also means you have no excuse to not give it a try. 

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

While the first two games had a solid following, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt became a huge mainstream success. The game puts players into a complex world where the battle isn’t between good and evil. Instead, it is a blur of moral ambiguity. Geralt, the protagonist, is not a hero but rather someone who is just trying to survive. Jam-packed with meaningful and interesting side quests, The Witcher 3 totally engrosses you in its world.


FromSoftware has influenced the gaming industry more than perhaps any other developer over the last decade thanks to its Souls series. Hundreds of games now try to emulate the same formula. The big question, though, was whether the studio could have the same success with a different franchise.


All those concerns were put to rest with Bloodborne, which showed the same concept can translate well to other genres. It is perhaps the best game they’ve produced with a very different tone to Dark Souls.

Rocket League

The concept of Rocket League might not sound all that appealing. It is essentially just soccer but played in cars. Yet, Psyonix managed to craft a skillful and elegant game that has remained popular across all platforms.

Although it can be played on your own, Rocket League shines in online multiplayer. Especially now that players can team up with others across various different systems. The popularity and skill-based gameplay have also made it an important game in the competitive scene.

God of War

The 2018 version of God of War was a reboot for the PlayStation franchise. It had all the same amazing encounters with gods, excellent combat, and cinematic scenes combined with an emotive story. But it successfully managed to create an effective and compelling narrative, particularly between Kratos and his son Atreus. This made every decision and moment feel all the more powerful and set up the franchise for a great future.

The Binding of Isaac

Edmund McMillen has had a number of different hit games in the last decade. After releasing the successful Super Meat Boy, he set to work on The Binding of Isaac. After escaping from their murderous mother, players explore randomly-generated dungeons in the basement under the family home. With countless different items, power-ups, and abilities along with a vast array of enemies, there is unending replay value. The Binding of Isaac shows just how good roguelikes can be.

Outer Wilds

The basic premise of Outer Wilds is that you are an astronaut trapped on an alien planet. The twist is that a nearby sun is about to go supernova and you only have 22 minutes to escape.

Like in The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask, time resets if you fail and the loop continues indefinitely. Requiring lateral thinking to solve puzzles, it is a beautiful game that constantly intrigues you with fascinating areas and characters.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was the first time this franchise appeared on the Nintendo Switch. Perhaps the first real innovation in the series for a decade, it revolutionized the way to use open worlds.

Without any of the boring elements that usually come within open world games, players are left to explore on their own. The end result is that it becomes a compelling title that you never want to leave. Remarkably, it still feels very much like a Zelda game despite the changes.

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In this article

Nintendo EPD
March 3, 2017
Santa Monica Studio
Sony Interactive Entertainment
April 20, 2018
Sony Computer Entertainment
March 24, 2015

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