EarthBound was already retro when it released back in 1994. The game’s squat characters and flat colors were meant emulate the look of classic NES RPGs, but EarthBound is actually a fairly technically advanced SNES game, packing tons of detail and subtly impressive effects into every screen. EarthBound was one of the earliest cases of a game ensuring it’s longevity by looking to the past — EarthBound’s “retro” graphics hold up better today than many of the SNES’ more opulent offerings.
49) Phantasy Star IV
Most Genesis RPGs couldn’t compete with SNES RPGs in the visual department, but for the final traditional Phantasy Star, Sega went all out. Phantasy Star IV is bright, colorful and varied, taking players from dust blown deserts, to icy tundras to grotesque towers made of living flesh. The game’s story was told through dynamic comic book-esque cutscenes that put most RPGs of the era to shame in terms of style. Just one of many examples of Sega busting ass to make art with the less powerful Genesis.