Top 10 adventure games of all time

Posted by Rich Carlson.
First posted on 01 January 2000. Last updated on 15 May 2014.
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Adventure genre has undergone both a revolution and an evolution from the early days of Colossal Cave on a PDP-10 back in 1972. Since then, countless numbers of gamers have devoted endless hours inside the fascinating realms of interactive fiction. Thus, it is only fitting to reflect on these achievements and the few titles which have defined this genre. Some critics may say any list made for…

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Previous Comments

I miss the game "Sanitarium" on this site... otherwise this site kicks ass!
- It's really good and has a nice layout!

By Morten • On 31 October 2000 • From Denmark/Sweden

How about listing the 3 top rated games of the last 6 months. The market is getting thing but I don't want to miss anything. (It probably doesn't help that Adventure and RPG have been slammed together in CGW)

By Joshua O'Connor-Rose • On 21 April 2000 • From Chicage

I don't agree with your list although I enjoyed some of the games - others I have never heard of! There seems to be a definite strategy to drive out adventure games in England - the mags do not even review them any more and they are hard to buy except on line.

Anyway, the Gabriel Knight series is my favourite and I cannot imagine enjoying any games more than that. I would put them in the order of GK2, (yes I know its FMV but I liked that) GK3 and GK1. Gripping stories with intense researched mystery plots and (unusually for games) some emotional and sexual content. Magic.

By the way, I didn't like Sam & Max and didn't even bother finishing it. Just shows how different people can be!
Game on.

By Anita • On 17 April 2000 • From England

You have listed 10 really great games in your top 10 adventures list but I must say I'm a little disappointed not to find a Tex Murphy adventure in the list. Pandora directive is a true classic!

By Christer Vestin • On 14 April 2000 • From Sweden


I think you have forgotten "The Dig" in your evaluation of the top adventure games.
Based on an idea by Steven Spielberg, I must say that this is the best adv game ever!


By Terje • On 06 April 2000 • From Norway

I have a different opinion according to the top ten in adventures.I think you should include there The DARKEYE,and i think it should be no.1 If anyone has never played this game before he doesn't know how what an emotional game is.Also,i think you should include a game from Tex Murphys Series such as Mean Streets or Pandora Directive.I Strongly agree about the Grim Fandango and Sanitarium but i don't think that Sam&Max; deserves the first place.Keep up the good work.

By Master Koukoul • On 03 February 2000 • From Greece

i was utterly shocked to see that sanitorium
had even made it to the top 10 list and even
more shocked that it beat out grim fandango.
i mean, yes it had it's moments but over all
it was pretty flat. the characters were
without depth and conversing with them was
almost a chore. in grim fandango on the
other had i would invariably be rewarded
for following up ever convesation path and
would offten go back so that freinds could
hear them. which brings me to the subject
of voice acting. the main enjoyment i have
dirived from sanitarium has been in comparing
the talents of it's protagonist to those of
william shatner. pausing after every word
will not make bad diologe any more griping!
that's my rant.
i feel much better now.
thanks for listening.

By parrish • On 24 January 2000 • From Somewhere

What!? No Gabriel Knight series in the Adventure Top 10!? How come!? This is a very serious omission.

By Mariusz Studzinski • On 13 January 2000 • From Poland

Hey, you are doing great! There is such a huge need for adventure game sites. One small thing, the top 10 list, where are the 7th Guest and the 11th Hour? I have played the former around 8 times, can recite all of the lines and am still not sick of it. The 11th Hour is just a smash. Both games were revolutionary for their time. The 7th Guest was one of the first CD ROM games and could be called the killer app of the drive. It still looks spectacular on any machine. The 11th Hour was the first game to use high res 30 fps video AND hicolor.
I really think that these two deserve at least a mention. They are both extremely enjoyable and quality games.

By Sydney Carton • On 07 January 2000 • From The 23rd Age
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