25. Wii Sports
Platforms: Nintendo Wii
Top Star: You
Hidden Gems: Friends, Family
The game that came with every purchase of new Nintendo Wii, Wii Sports gave consumers a taste of what Nintendo’s newest system was capable of. Sports included baseball, tennis, boxing, bowling and golf, all centered around intuitive controls that made the game easy to pick up and play. It was everybody’s first game for the system, and is one of the most memorable Nintendo Wii games to date.
24. Top Spin 4
Platforms: PlayStation 3, Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360
Top Stars: Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams
Hidden Gems: Andy Roddick, Eugenie Bouchard
When broken down, every tennis video game is essentially an evolution on Pong. We’ve come a long way.
Top Spin 4 is the quintessential ball-and-racket simulator, filled with professionals that perfectly exemplify their real life counter parts. The graphics were mesmerizing for the time, and it features the signature brilliant 2K presentation style. Put down the Pong, pick up Top Spin 4.
23. NBA Hangtime
Platforms: Arcade, Nintendo 64, PlayStation, Super Nintendo, Sega Genesis, Windows
Top Stars: Scottie Pippen/Steve Kerr, Hakeem Olajuwon/Clyde Drexler, Reggie Miller/Anybody
Hidden Gems: Arvydas Sabonis/Kenny Anderson, Glen Rice/Dell Curry
The spiritual successor of NBA Jam, Hangtime took the formula that games before it used and repackaged it in a sleeker and more graphically vibrant format. It has all the ingredients necessary for an arcade basketball game, from high-flying dunks to unforgettable commentary. Setting it apart from the rest of the pack was the Create-A-Player feature that allowed players to customize a character from their height, weight, attributes and look. Nothing like a basketball playing wolf soaring through the air only to be met at the rim by a giant, green alien. Hours of fun.
22. Fight Night: Champion
Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, iOS
Top Stars: Muhammad Ali, Manny Pacquiao, Roy Jones Jr.
Hidden Gems: Sonny Liston, Julio Cesar Chavez
The Fight Night series has been revered for its consistency. The intuitive controls, solid online play and enjoyable story mode keep it at the top of combat sports games in the new millennium. All five installments in the series have been generally praised by critics, making any of the games a worthy choice for this list. We’re going to give the slight edge here to Champion for its gritty, story-driven career mode.
Image Sources: YouTube, PlayStation, International Arcade Museum, Junkie Monkeys