What is the best sports video game of all time?

What is the best sports video game of all time?

This week at SB Nation, we’re going to be talking about video games all over the network. That’s no longer diminutive to sports activities video games, but in this post, devoted here, that’s what we’re going to focus on. What is the finest sports activities video game title of all time?

That’s the put you come in. We’ve selected 32 games from a fluctuate of sports activities, forms and eras, and we’ll be working polls over the route of this week for you judge which one reigns supreme (there’s extra recordsdata on the underside on the resolution and seeding route of, for these ). There are some I couldn’t manufacture room for (Pyre and Golf Narrative stans, know that I’m with you) and some I and not using a doubt forgot. I’d like to hear about them! Please bawl at me within the feedback.

While that it is probably you’ll well’t gaze the vote casting box, click here.

Balloting for the first spherical will discontinuance at 11: 59 PM ET Monday, June 15. We’ll vote on the 2nd and third rounds Tuesday, and the final four games Wednesday sooner than crowning a champion Thursday.

Table of Contents

The Originals Notify (pre-1999)


(1) NBA Jam vs. (8) RBI Baseball

  • 90%

    (1) NBA Jam (1993)

    (2513 votes)

  • 9%

    (8) RBI Baseball (1987)

    (261 votes)

2774 votes total

Vote Now


(4) NFL Blitz vs. (5) Mario Kart 64

  • 25%

    (4) NFL Blitz (1997)

    (721 votes)

  • 74%

    (5) Mario Kart 64 (1996)

    (2106 votes)

2827 votes total

Vote Now


(3) Punch-Out!! vs. (6) NHL 94

  • 57%

    (3) Punch-Out!! (1987)

    (1553 votes)

  • 42%

    (6) NHL 94 (1993)

    (1132 votes)

2685 votes total

Vote Now


(2) Tecmo Gargantuan Bowl vs. (7) Yard Baseball

  • 53%

    (2) Tecmo Gargantuan Bowl (1991)

    (1478 votes)

  • 46%

    (7) Yard Baseball (1997)

    (1280 votes)

2758 votes total

Vote Now

Loads of classics in this characteristic! My private favourite in this community must be Yard Baseball, but I grew up taking part in a lot of of the games within the Yard series and I is no longer going to begrudge any of you who vote for the very finest Tecmo Gargantuan Bowl.

The Flip of the Century Notify (1999-2003)


(1) Tony Hawk’s Skilled Skater 2 vs. (8) Ken Griffey Jr.’s Slugfest

  • 84%

    (1) Tony Hawk’s Skilled Skater 2 (2000)

    (2312 votes)

  • 15%

    (8) Ken Griffey Jr.’s Slugfest (1999)

    (409 votes)

2721 votes total

Vote Now


(4) NBA Avenue Vol. 2 vs. (5) WWF No Mercy

  • 73%

    (4) NBA Avenue Vol. 2 (2003)

    (1930 votes)

  • 26%

    (5) WWF No Mercy (2000)

    (680 votes)

2610 votes total

Vote Now


(3) SSX Tricky vs. (6) Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2004

  • 41%

    (3) SSX Tricky (2001)

    (1093 votes)

  • 58%

    (6) Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2004 (2003)

    (1537 votes)

2630 votes total

Vote Now


(2) Madden 2004 vs. (7) Top Scramble

  • 88%

    (2) Madden 2004 (2003)

    (2369 votes)

  • 11%

    (7) Top Scramble (2003)

    (312 votes)

2681 votes total

Vote Now

This characteristic has arguably the favourite to desire the total ingredient: Tony Hawk’s Skilled Skater 2. The major two games within the series are being remastered, with a originate date of September, so rep excited for that. The characteristic additionally has the legendary snowboarding title SSX Tricky, and standouts from wrestling (WWF No Mercy) and tennis (Top Scramble).

Other private favorites here: NBA Avenue Vol. 2 (nonetheless holds up!), Madden 2004 (aka Michael Vick Madden) and Ken Griffey Jr. Slugfest (I logged potential too many hours in that game as a minute bit one).

The Mid 2000’s Notify (2004-2008)


(1) ESPN NFL 2K5 vs. (8) All Skilled Soccer 2K8

  • 87%

    (1) ESPN NFL 2K5 (2004)

    (2127 votes)

  • 12%

    (8) All Skilled Soccer 2K8 (2007)

    (296 votes)

2423 votes total

Vote Now


(4) College Hoops 2K8 vs. (5) NFL Avenue

  • 49%

    (4) College Hoops 2K8 (2007)

    (1237 votes)

  • 50%

    (5) NFL Avenue (2004)

    (1274 votes)

2511 votes total

Vote Now


(3) NBA Are residing 2005 vs. (6) iRacing

  • 82%

    (3) NBA Are residing 2005 (2004)

    (2004 votes)

  • 17%

    (6) iRacing (2008)

    (435 votes)

2439 votes total

Vote Now


(2) MVP Baseball 2005 vs. (7) Wii Sports activities

  • 29%

    (2) MVP Baseball 2005 (2005)

    (786 votes)

  • 70%

    (7) Wii Sports activities (2006)

    (1879 votes)

2665 votes total

Vote Now

Here is when issues began to consolidate into the major titles we gaze on the present time (the following characteristic is mighty extra illustrative of that). I’m in point of fact intrigued by that first match-up: two beloved 2K football titles sooner than EA boxed them out of football games. All-Skilled Soccer 2K8 is one amongst the few examples of me taking some inventive license here: it didn’t rep tall reviews, on the other hand it’s my all-time favourite football game (in my survey, no game has greater balanced speeding and passing on all aspects of the ball). 2K will most certainly be returning to football quickly, though!

Two extra of my favorites here from now-discontinued series: MVP Baseball 2005 (a game that we’ve already laid out the case for as the finest of all-time) and College Hoops 2K8. Two feedback on 2K8: 1) the occupation mode was so mighty stress-free I utilized to Elon due to it and near to went to varsity there 2) plug Leathernecks.

A doable darkhorse here is iRacing, the finest-in-class racing simulator, entire with laser-scanned tracks.

The Standard Generation (2009-Exhibit)


(1) FIFA 13 vs. (8) NCAA Soccer 14

  • 27%

    (1) FIFA 13 (2012)

    (702 votes)

  • 72%

    (8) NCAA Soccer 14 (2013)

    (1880 votes)

2582 votes total

Vote Now


(4) Battle Night Spherical 4 vs. (5) Gargantuan Mega Baseball 3

  • 57%

    (4) Battle Night Spherical 4 (2009)

    (1325 votes)

  • 42%

    (5) Gargantuan Mega Baseball 3 (2017)

    (989 votes)

2314 votes total

Vote Now


(3) NBA 2K12 vs. (6) Rocket League

  • 48%

    (3) NBA 2K12 (2011)

    (1236 votes)

  • 51%

    (6) Rocket League (2015)

    (1320 votes)

2556 votes total

Vote Now


(2) MLB The Modern 09 vs. (7) Motorsport Manager

  • 88%

    (2) MLB The Modern 09 (2009)

    (2095 votes)

  • 11%

    (7) Motorsport Manager (2014)

    (271 votes)

2366 votes total

Vote Now

Now we’re pretty fully into the enormous franchises. It would possibly maybe well well well also be exhausting to clutch representatives for every, for the reason that games most ceaselessly no longer ceaselessly alternate from yr to yr.

NCAA Soccer 14 has a massive upset opportunity here — the game did not rep as excessive reviews upon originate as the remainder of the entires here, but as the final licensed NCAA Soccer title there is a looooot of nostalgia spherical it.

You’ve additionally obtained Motorsport Manager, which in my survey would possibly maybe well well be the finest-in-class of the simulator genre. There are additionally a pair of very finest fresh takes on the sports activities genre from the previous few years: Rocket League and Gargantuan Mega Baseball.

How the games had been selected

A mixture of private preference, crowd-sourcing my SB Nation and Polygon colleagues, Metacritic overview scores and the continuously-somewhat-intangible “legacy” ingredient. I diminutive it to one resolution per franchise (and most ceaselessly aged Metacritic glean as a tiebreaker) — when that it is probably you’ll very successfully be so inclined, in point of fact feel free to survey every particular particular person entry for a franchise as representative of the franchise as a entire. Here is no longer my 32 favourite sports activities games of all time — that would possibly maybe well well be a sure community. I tried to manufacture the community of games representative of the sleek fan favorites and the plenty of types of sports activities games we’ve considered over the years.

Seeding was done strictly by procedure of Metacritic overview scores, with the exception of the first characteristic (used sufficient that nearly all didn’t have Metacritic scores). I tried to manufacture logical seeding out of that one.