After the massive success of the Nintendo 64, the company followed it up with their next home console, the GameCube. With its name inspired by its shape, the GameCube would be the generation of consoles to bring plenty of fan-favorite franchises to gamers who hadn’t before played video games.
With more than 650 games produced during its five-year run, there is something for everyone on this now vintage console, however, many of the titles excel above the pack.
We’ll be taking a look at the best games that GameCube has to offer and why they are the perfect addition to any gamers collection of today.
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 4
When it comes to skating video games the Pro Skater franchise has become a household name synonymous with cartoonish tricks and fast-paced fun. From this series Pro Skater 4 is renowned as the best entry in the series and its GameCube release was no exception.
Boasting the arcade-style skating goodness that players of the franchise will remember, a decent roster of playable characters, and plenty of content to explore, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 4 is most definitely one of the best games from the GameCube era.
Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem
Surprisingly, the Nintendo GameCube provided quite a few horror hits during its run, and Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem is one of them. The psychological horror themes and action-adventure gameplay pair together beautifully to keep players engaged the whole way through.
You’ll battle as multiple different characters to stop an evil entity whose goal is to enslave humanity in this game and while it wasn’t a success commercially those who have played it will tell you it is one of the best experiences you can have with horror on GameCube.
Pokémon Colleseum was the very first Pokémon game released for GameCube and boasted your standard Pokémon gameplay with its own unique 3D style.
An upgrade to the Nintendo 64’s Pokémon Stadium 2, with the addition of a new generation of Pokémon, if you’re a fan of the series then you’ll be sure to find enjoyment from this GameCube classic.
Super Smash Bros. Melee
There was no way we could make this list without adding one of the most iconic games from the era Super Smash Bros. Melee. The second entry into the Super Smash Bros. series, Melee introduced a handful of new characters, stages, and is still now thought of by many as the best game of them all.
Melee is exactly what you’d expect from Smash and fortunately for those without a GameCube, it has been so widely adapted that you can play it on PC, an act which is commonly done in competition to this day.
Super Mario Sunshine
While Mario began his adventures in the 2D perspective, the commercial hit that was Super Mario 64 for the Nintendo 64 spawned plenty more sequels setting Mario into a 3D setting and Sunshine was its direct follow-up.
Taking place on a tropical island where the game’s antagonist Shadow Mario has left quite the mess, Mario is tasked with cleaning things up introducing one of the most unique mechanics in the Mario franchise, the Flash Liquidizer Ultra Dousing Device, or F.L.U.D.D for short.
If you’ve yet to play this entry into the Mario Franchise you’ll want to do so ASAP and fortunately, it was re-released as part of Super Mario 3D Allstars for the Nintendo Switch.
The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker
During the era of the GameCube, some of the biggest hits came in the form of entries to The Legend of Zelda series. One of these, The Wind Waker launched in 2003 and boasted a truly unique animation style for the time.
The tenth entry into the series, as you’d expect from a Zelda game you play as Link and are tasked with taking down the threat of Ganon who in this case has kidnapped his sister. What makes the Wind Waker unique is its accentuation on sailing which hadn’t been seen in the series prior to this entry.
Side scrollers had mostly gone by the wayside with the introduction of the GameCube’s 3D capabilities, but Viewtiful Joe bought it back in excellent quality. This side-scrolling beat ‘em up game had plenty to offer with its superhero protagonist and unique narrative, if you haven’t yet you’ll want to try out Viewtiful Joe.
Resident Evil 4
The best horror game on the GameCube is the survival horror hit Resident Evil 4. An exclusive to the console, this game saw players control US government agent Kennedy who is sent on a mission to rescue the president’s daughter, as you’d expect it isn’t so simple.
Being the first entry into the franchise to stray away from the fixed camera angles and slow gameplay style, Resident Evil 4 quickly became a hit and one of the most beloved titles for both Resident Evil fans and GameCube enthusiasts.
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
Nearing the end of the GameCube’s lifespan, The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess was released which quickly become a massive hit for the console.
The game boasts impressive world design, a stunning art direction, and its own unique tone that is a departure from that of other games in the franchise. Not only is Twilight Princess regarded as one of the best Zelda games of all time, many believe it to be one of the greatest games of all time period.
Like many of GameCube’s hits, already beloved franchises took advantage of the new hardware to produce a new 3D look and Metroid Prime did this the best of all. The game is the first in the Metroid series to use this new style and is believed to be the best Metroid game to date.
Taking place between Metroid and Metroid II, players control the bounty hunter Samus as she battles the Space Pirates and their variety of experimental allies.
The game wasn’t just a success amongst fans, but become one of the highest-selling games of the time and outselling almost all other GameCube titles. Metroid Prime is one you have to try out for yourself.