When you talk about the best gaming consoles of all time, it’s impossible to discuss it objectively. Everyone has their own favorite console and their own parameters for what make a console great in the first place. This list isn’t a comprehensive list of gaming consoles ranked by their success. Instead, we list is of some of the most influential gaming consoles to ever hit the market—the ones that changed the way gaming worked in general, and how others perceived the hobby and industry.
You can’t talk about the best gaming consoles of all time without mentioning the PlayStation 2, because it stills holds the record for most units sold of any console ever made. That’s an impressive feat when you think about what it’s been put up against in the years after its release. The PlayStation 2’s library of games was also legendarily stacked with excellent games that shaped the industry for years to come.
Super Nintendo Entertainment System
Going further back in time, we find the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, or the SNES to those who knew it well. The SNES occupies an interesting place in gaming history. While it wasn’t the pioneer Nintendo console like the original NES was, it arguably created some of gaming’s most influential games and inspired millions to join a hobby that was still relatively unknown. Nintendo, and video games in general, wouldn’t be where they are today without the games released on the SNES back in the day.
Perhaps a divisive choice for one of the best consoles of all time, you can’t deny that the Nintendo Wii did something special. The Wii brought so many new people into the fold of gaming. The accessibility of the Wii’s controls created a space where tons of people who never considered gaming before suddenly wanted to try it out. The Wii’s influence expanded the market of gamers far beyond what it had previously been.
The 360 is on this list because of how it perfected what the original Xbox started in terms of online games. Online gaming was a relatively new concept on the original Xbox, and it wasn’t until the introduction of the Xbox 360 that the idea of online games crystallized fully in the minds of the average, everyday gamer.
The Gameboy belongs on this list because it popularized the idea of mobile gaming. Gaming had been a stationary hobby for so long, and the introduction of the Gameboy gave people a new way to play their favorite games. We still see the ripple effects of this switch to mobile gaming today with the resounding success of the Nintendo Switch—and the Steam Deck is not too far off, either.
These are just some of the consoles that shaped the hobby we all love so much. Should you find yourself in need of some blue light blocking eyewear to keep you in the game, Glassy Eyewear is here to help.