The Strong National Museum of Play in Rochester, New York has announced the four titles it's inducting into the World Video Game Hall of Fame this year: Donkey Kong, the game that launched Shigeru Miyamoto's career in 1981; Halo: Combat Evolved, the game that redefined console first person shooters in 2001; multinational cultural phenomenon Pokémon Red and Green from1996; and the game that sparked an arcade renaissance in 1991 and gave birth to the modern fighting game scene, Street Fighter II.
These four emerged from a field of 12 equally-worthy finalists that included Final Fantasy VII, Mortal Kombat, Myst, Portal, Resident Evil, Tomb Raider, Wii Sports and your mom and dad's favorite – Microsoft Windows Solitaire. Just because these other games didn't make the cut this year doesn't mean they're not eligible for inclusion in future. In fact, both Sonic the Hedgehog and The Legend of Zelda missed out from the first batch of inductees in 2015, but were included in last year's list.
The Hall of Fame at The Strong was first established in 2015 to "recognize individual electronic games of all types –arcade, console, computer, handheld, and mobile – that have enjoyed popularity over a sustained period and have exerted influence on the video game industry or on popular culture and society in general." Inductees are on permanent display at the the museum in Rochester on the second floor.
Anyone can nominate a game for inclusion, so if you're looking at list above and just rolling your eyes and making groaning noises, you can go here and make your argument for BMX XXX or Bubsy 3D or whatever. Games are ultimately judged on their status as an icon, their longevity, geographical reach and influence on the design and development of other games.