I’ve been quietly thinking about this for the last two years, but Paul Conry’s Inbox letter on Monday has tipped me over the edge and I cannot hold my tongue any longer. Congratulations, by the way, to Paul on his recent 100% achievement on beating Zelda: Breath Of The Wild.
I can’t claim to have been a truly lifelong gamer; always been interested in the medium and played games since the days of the Acorn Electron, then the Amiga A500, then PC a bit (mostly Championship/Football Manager if I’m honest), then a bit more on friends’ consoles with GoldenEye 007, Zelda: Ocarina Of Time, GTA III, Halo: Combat Evolved, and of course FIFA – all during my uni years, before dabbling with the GameCube (my first console) and the Wii.
But it is only since 2014 (thanks to my beloved Wii U and Mario Kart 8) that I’ve really embraced gaming as my #1 hobby and begun following the scene reasonably closely. I’ve since invested a pretty penny or two on every major platform and have built a fantastic collection of games.
But never, in all my days, particularly over these last five years, have l seen a game get talked about in the way Breath Of The Wild has been.
I’ve seen so many people refer to it as one of the greatest games ever. Most seem to stop short of saying yes, it is the greatest, opting instead for ‘one of the greatest’, but nobody ever seems to cite any other genuine contenders, and there just hasn’t been any other game talked about like that since… well, Zelda: Ocarina Of Time really, it seems to me.
GTA V and Minecraft have sold gajillions; The Last of Us ‘won’ the previous generation it seems; and The Witcher 3 and God Of War are in the leading pack for this generation, but I never seem to see any of those get referred to as a GOAT contender. Perhaps Witcher 3 (helped by being multi-platform) has had the closest level of consistent acknowledgement to Breath Of The Wild, and I think I’ve seen a smattering of GOAT nominations, but nothing like as widespread across the gaming community from my observations. Looking further back, only Ocarina of Time and Super Mario World seem to have achieved the same sort of level of acclaim I’m getting at.
So, if you disagree with the above, what other games should genuinely be in the GOAT conversation, not just based on your own opinion of them, but on an apparent general gaming consensus?