The difference in taste between Japanese versus non-Japanese gamers rears its head again. Check out the 2ch response to this New York Times article about Henry Lowood's proposed list of the top most historically influential games, which included Spacewar! (1962), Star Raiders (1979), Zork (1980), Tetris (1985), SimCity (1989), Super Mario Bros. 3 (1990), Civilization I/II (1991), Doom (1993), Warcraft series (beginning 1994) and Sensible World of Soccer (1994).
That there are differences between the two countries' proposed best-of lists isn't particularly shocking, but it is interesting to see the same titles consistently appearing across many Japanese fans' lists: Super Mario Brothers, the Dragonquest series, and Biohazard (a.k.a. Resident Evil in the USA), none of which appear on the American list at all. In fact, the only real overlap seems to be Tetris. (And Super Mario 3, though color me confused as to why that particular title ranks higher than the original on a list like this -- unless I'm missing a spate of tanuki-themed games that have appeared since then.)
Some selected comments, translated from the Japanese:
"What about City Connection?"
"Why Super Mario 3? And while it may be good, Civ isn't THAT important."
"Here's my list: Super Mario Brothers; Mario Kart; Dragonquest (anything but 6); Puyo Puyo; Romancing Saga 2; Gradius; Fire Emblem; Biohazard; Winning Eleven; Fruits Cup."
"Doom!? NO WAY QUAKE'S WAY MORE IMPORTANT!!!"
"If you're Japanese, these are the most influential games: Super Mario Brothers; Mario 64; Pokemon; Dragonquest 3; Final Fantasy 7; Tetris; Brain Training; Biohazard."
"Good list, but you're forgetting Xevious and R-Type."
"Look, if you're talking most influential it hast to be: Gradius, Tetris, Super Mario Brothers, Dragonquest, Kamaitachi no Yoru, Biohazard, Wizardry, Street Fighter 2, Virtual Fighter, Tsuki-Hime"
"Space Invaders, Super Mario Brothers, Legend of Zelda, Raiden, Gradius, Nectaris, Daisenryaku, Princess Maker, Dragonquest, Wizardry, Portopia Murder Mystery, Street Fighter, Virtua Fighter."
And the winning comment is...
"Hey, what about strip Mah Jongg games!?"