It's the beginning of a new year which means it's time for our annual countdown of the best online Dreamcast games! A total of six new games were added to the online roster in the last year including one of my personal favorites, Ooga Booga and of course the NFL, NBA, and NCAA games. Will one or more of these games make the list? Will Phantasy Star Online secure the top spot for the third time in a row? Over 200 votes have come in to answer those very questions! Without further adu, here are your top 5 online Dreamcast games for 2019!
5. NFL 2K2
Starting off our top 5 countdown is a new contender. NFL 2K2 is one of the latest games to be brought back online and has proven to be quite a hit. Let's face it, the football, errr... American football video game hasn't changed much over the years. Sure the graphics may have gotten a bit prettier but the core gameplay remains the same. Sega and Visual Concepts teamed up to send a big screw you to EA after they refused to bring their Madden series to Sega's final console. And what a fine "screw you" it was! The NFL 2K series arguably surpassed Madden as the best football game franchise of the time. Not only that but it brought online multiplayer into the mix starting with NFL 2K1. Seriously, who needs EA? Screw you Electronic Aggravation!
4. ChuChu Rocket!
Coming in at #4 is ChuChu Rocket!. Whether you play it offline or online, this game is simply a classic. As I’ve said many times in the past, the concept is about as simple as it gets, but labeling this game as “simple” would be far from the truth. ChuChu Rocket! is like the Olympics for your brain and let’s face it, most of us don’t have the brainpower to keep up with everything that’s happening on the screen. You just have to frantically put down arrows, hoping to the gods above that those precious little ChuChus will make it into your rocket before they become brutally murdered by those pesky KapuKapus. It’s all worth it after those stressful few minutes are over and you’ve saved the lives of countless ChuChus. Sometimes you just can’t help but get emotional.
3. Quake III Arena
In the number 3 position this year we have Quake III Arena. Without a doubt, it’s a staple when it comes to online Dreamcast games and a classic in the arena shooter genre. The Dreamcast port of the crazy popular PC game was an admirable effort and really showed off the power of Sega’s new console. Quake III Arena has always maintained a large following of loyal fans. In fact, the game is probably the only online game in the Dreamcast’s library that has never been offline thanks to private servers. It obviously helps that anyone can simply host their own server using the PC version of the game. I think it’s safe to assume that players will still be battling it out in these hellish online arenas for years to come.
2. Alien Front Online
The aliens are coming ever closer to world domination! Moving up from its 3rd place position from last year, Alien Front Online takes 2nd place. Alien Front Online has always been one of my favorite Dreamcast games, even well before I had a chance to play it online. It’s a classic example of what Sega does best: arcade games! It may not be the most in-depth game in the world but it does what it does extremely well. It runs at a buttery smooth 60fps and never fails to deliver intense alien vs. human action. While playing the game offline is a blast, taking it online brings it to a whole new level. It really doesn’t get much better than 4 vs 4 online battles with voice chat. What year was this game released again?
1. Phantasy Star Online
Yes yes, I know, you’re absolutely shocked and bewildered that Phantasy Star Online is at the top of the list for the third year in a row. But wait! It’s not quite as clear cut as it may seem. Here’s the shocker: Phantasy Star Online and Alien Front Online... are tied! Yes, you heard me right, they both received exactly 91 votes each with PSO only winning via a tie-breaker poll. Regardless, PSO just barely hangs on to it’s #1 position this year. I definitely can’t say it doesn’t deserve it though. When it comes to online Dreamcast games, it really is the definitive game. Dare I say iconic. The sense of community that PSO delivers is unmatched by any other game. It’s an entire online world with places to explore, quests to partake in, rare items to find, and of course plenty of people to team up with. There’s just something about it that makes it feel like more than just a game. It has a life of its own. Maybe one day it will be taken down from its throne but for now, it’s still the best online Dreamcast game there is.