When there is something truly good or awesome out in the world, should it not be honored? Should it not be remembered by those who study history? When it comes to sports, there are halls of fame to remember the players, coaches, and even announcers who have helped make their games legendary. Likewise, the actors and creators in Hollywood have their own versions of the Hall of Fame via the Walk of Fame and certain lifetime achievement awards. For the video game industry, it took a while, but a Hall of Fame was set up, and two truly legendary games were inducted into the 2023 class via Wii Sports and The Last of Us.
To be fair, there were four entries this year, and as AP News reports, the other winners for this class were Barbie Fashion Designer and Computer Space. The last of which was the first ever commercial video game, so its importance in history was secured long ago.
Focusing on the two entries we singled out, these two titles greatly impacted the video game space for very different reasons.
When it comes to Wii Sports, this was the title that was paired with the Nintendo Wii, and in many ways, it was the game that helped sell people the idea of motion controls for video games. Remember, Xbox and Sony dominated the market at the time, and Nintendo needed a “hook” to bring gamers back into their marketplace. So, they made the motion controls and then attached this game to the Wii for free so that people had something to play from the get-go.
To that end, Wii Sports is one of the best-selling games ever because it was sold with the system.
As for The Last of Us, the title shattered expectations and became one of the most beloved stories and games ever. The tale of Joel and Ellie worked its way into people’s hearts so much that Naughty Dog kept re-releasing it so that more people could play it, leading up to the “remake” version on PS4/PS5 and PC. The game was so beloved that it got turned into an HBO live-action series starring Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsay and was not only adored but is already seen as an early Emmy contender.
So having these two in the Video Game Hall of Fame feels right, as both had a big impact on the industry. Oh, and the other two games had an impact too.