Best Video Games from the Year of the Rooster

editorials by Emily Medlock

As many of you may know, the year 2017 is the “year of the rooster” on the Chinese Zodiac calendar. It comes once every twelve years, the next being 2029. First, let’s take a look at what being a “rooster” means to those who observe the Chinese zodiac. In general, it is said that those born under this sign are trustworthy, have a strong sense of timekeeping and are responsible at work. They are also known to be honest (to the point of being blunt), social, and loyal. Their worst trait is their need for attention and vanity that accompanies it.

Another fault most roosters carry is impatience. Such as waiting for new games to come out. And this year there are many exciting games that are set to be released (or have already been released), such as Mass Effect: Andromeda and Resident Evil 7: Biohazard. The people born under the sign of the rooster are probably anxious for these games, but what about the games from past “Rooster Years”? Perhaps these could feel their time while waiting. Here we go, broken down by year, the best video games from the year of the rooster!


Although it is said that Pong was first played in 1969, it wasn’t released until 1972. Actually, there were only two games that were.

Lunar Lander

Lunar lander


In Lunar Lander, the player controls a spaceship as it falls towards the surface of the moon. It’s no surprise that both of the games released this year are space-themed games. Of course, 1969 was the year that Neil Armstrong landed on the moon, so the world was obsessed with space travel…


Space Travel

Space travel


Which happens to be the name of the other game released that year. This game, Lunar Landing was an early mainframe game, and had little effect on anyone or any other game. It may not have been a anything special, but when only two games are made in a year, sometimes that is enough to mark history. What really brought this game down is the fact that it had no real objective; you just flew around in space and landed on various planets.



Now this year was special. In fact, there’s not enough time to give each game (130 in total) the attention it deserves. Let’s just say, 1981 was a breakthrough year! Sorry to say I won’t go over all of them, but focus on a few that seem to rise above the rest.


Donkey Kong

Donkey Kong


Out of 130 games of 1981, about 99% of people will agree that Donkey Kong takes pretty much the whole cake…and a few cupcakes too. This might just be the most famous arcade game to date! The gameplay was rather advanced for it’s time and gives you an immersive story that we have no idea how they captured! We also have to remember that not only did this game introduce DK, but also Mario! Sure, back then he was simply Jumpman, but it wasn’t long until he became the most popular video game character of all time.





Galaga is THE competitive video game of the 1980s. Players would challenge each other to beat their score in the game where they destroyed insect-like enemies and avoided death.





Everyone and their cousin…and grandpa…and baby daddy’s baby…played Frogger. When you are developed by Konami and published by Sega, what could go wrong? This game has been mocked, recreated, and played more than most games can even dream of! The idea of playing as a frog crossing the street seems a little lame, but when you put it the game, somehow it becomes a legend!


Ms. Pac-Man

Ms pacmna


In 1980, Pac-Man was released, and a year later, we meet his feminine friend! Women all over the world were ecstatic to see that there was now game where you could play as a female. Actually, that female was the main character. To date, the game is one of the most popular arcade games of all time. In fact, she is even more popular than her husband, selling millions of copies more than he did.



The year of 1993 had much to offer us, but only a few really made their mark in history.





To date, the series is ongoing and bringing us something new every few years. Fighting demons, hunting things, frequent trips to hell. No, you are not Dean Winchester, but Doomguy. Doom is one game that every FPS fan keeps in their heart and that often times started the passion altogether. No Doom game will ever measure up to the original 1993 classic.


The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening



So pretty much every Zelda game ever made turned out to be a hit, but this one was the first for a handheld console. On multiple occasions it has made an appearance in lists of the best games of all time! This is because of its originality, depth, story, and many ground-breaking features.





Of course, the iconic character made his debut in 1993! Not only did Mr. McCloud make the headlines of every gaming news source, “best of” list, and appearance in every Smash Bros. game, but he was also Nintendo’s second three-dimensional game, and the first to use polygonal graphics.





Myst was one of the first advanced puzzle games set in a magical land, as well as one of the first with alternate paths and endings. It was incredible and unheard of at the time to create an adult-centered game, but Cyan did it, and it paid off big time! To think that Activision turned down the idea, and missed out on the fortunes that followed its release. For nearly 10 years, it was the best-selling PC game of all time until 2002 when The Sims stole the title.



The year of 2005 was another amazing year for the gaming industry. There were so many great games (over 800) that came out that year, and…might I mention that in 2005 the Xbox 360, PSP, and GameBoy Micro were released! I know! What an amazing year! But what games made the biggest marks in history?


God of War

God of War


Yes, the first God of War game was released in 2005 for PlayStation 2. Twelve years later, God of War is one of the best-selling and most popular franchises ever to hit PlayStation consoles. As of 2017, there are eight games in total, but none of them would have been possible if that first one wouldn’t have debuted.


Resident Evil 4

Resident Evil 4


Originally released for the GameCube, and shortly after the PS2, RE4 now spans across eleven platforms! This installment in the ever-popular franchise is nearly unarguably the best of the series (with the original and its remakes at a close second). It also ranks as one of the best games of all time! Resident Evil 4 is challenging, with so many enemies coming at you, all with different strategies required. Plus, the immersive, eerie atmosphere is not easily forgotten. So many of the biggest games in history have actually dew out inspiration for RE4, Gears of War makers have even admitted to the fact!


Guitar Hero

Guitar hero


Everyone who’s anyone is now a musician thanks to Guitar Hero. It wasn’t until 2007 that the series added drums and vocals, but somehow, simply the guitar was enough. At the time, nearly everyone had a copy, or had a friend who had one, meaning, everyone played! It was amazing to see a game captivate so many, and bring so many families together. Plus, it had some of the greatest rock songs of all time!


Mario Kart DS

Mario Kart DS


Sure, the first Mario Kart was initially created in 1992 for Super Nintendo. Also, the 1996 version for 64 might have been the best. But, Mario Kart DS really brought the game to the 21st century. The DS game revolutionized the way we play by allowing the player’s kart to be views on the top screen while the map/other tool on the bottom screen. Not to mention it was the first Mario Kart game playable online, so you could race your friends without being in the same room, or play LAN locally so you don’t need a cable.


Guild Wars

Guild wars


Although games like RuneScape, EVE Online, and EverQuest tried to launch the MMORPG into a popular existence, it wasn’t until 2004 that World of Warcraft was released. Of course, it is still considered the “best” MMORPG of all time; but there is another that continues to grow in popularity. That is Guild Wars, which came out a year after WoW, in 2005. The character customization (including class and career path), competitive play, and beautiful free-roaming ability make Guild Wars and its successor (Guild Wars 2) one of the greatest things to come out of 2005. Of course, this was the year of Hurricane Katrina, and the DOOM movie. So…yeah.

Although this wraps up the list of the best video games from the year of the rooster, remember that there are hundreds more! So, dust your old consoles, or download a remake! Whatever you do, just appreciate what these years have done for us! And don’t forget to look back at the amazing year of 2017 when 2029 comes around!


About the Author

Emily Medlock

Emily Medlock has been a hard-core gamer her entire life. In recent years, she has not only turned her passion into a way of life, but now shares it with the world through her writing.

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