1991 in video games
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- February 14 – DMA Design releases Lemmings, a puzzle game that requires the player to lead a group of lemmings through a dangerous environment to an escape portal.
- February 6 – Capcom releases Street Fighter II for arcades. It becomes highly successful and is routinely listed as the grandfather of the fighting game genre. It is also credited with revitalizing the arcade game industry at the time, and popularizing direct tournament-level competition between players.
- March – AOL, SSI, TSR and Stormfront Studios collaborate and launch Neverwinter Nights, credited as the first graphical MMORPG.
- May 6 – Sierra On-Line releases The Sierra Network, which is also credited as the first graphical MMORPG (due to its inclusion of The Shadow of Yserbius), TSN would later become its more memorable name, ImagiNation Network, after a total buyout from AT&T in 1994.
- June 23 – Sega releases Sonic the Hedgehog for the Sega Genesis which later becomes the pack-in game and defining title for the console. It introduces the eponymous character, who would go on to be Sega's mascot. Sega also releases a version of the game for the Master System and Game Gear.
- July 19 – Square releases Final Fantasy IV in Japan, the first Final Fantasy game for the Super Famicom (released in November as Final Fantasy II in North America).
- August 23 – Nintendo releases Super Mario World and F-Zero along with the Super Nintendo Entertainment System in North America. Super Mario World was the original pack-in game for the SNES. The game introduces the Yoshi character to the Mario series.
- September – Namco releases Starblade for arcades, featuring one of the earliest instances of real-time 3D graphics in video games.
- September – Electronic Arts releases motorcycle racing combat game Road Rash for Sega Genesis, starting the series.
- November – Nintendo releases Metroid II: Return of Samus for the Game Boy in North America.
- November – Delphine Software releases cinematic action-adventure game Another World for the Amiga, which uses polygons instead of sprites.
- November 21 – Nintendo releases The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past for the Super Famicom in Japan.
- December 1 – LucasArts releases Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge for Amiga, MS-DOS, Macintosh, and FM Towns.
- December 4 – Konami releases Super Castlevania IV for SNES in North America.
- December 6 – Mega Man 4 is released in Japan.
- December 13 – Tecmo releases Tecmo Super Bowl for NES, the follow-up to 1989's Tecmo Bowl.
- December 16 – MicroProse releases Civilization. As of 2005, it is still Sid Meier's most successful game.
- Team17 release Alien Breed, the first of the series, for the Amiga.
- July – Atari updates their Lynx handheld system with a smaller form-factor, better screen, and longer battery life.
- August 23 – Super Nintendo Entertainment System released in North America.
- December 1 – Sega releases the Mega-CD in Japan.
- September – S3 launches with the 86C911, often regarded as the first significant graphics accelerator chip for the Microsoft Windows platform.
- New companies: Vicarious Visions, Inc, id Software, Bungie, Silicon & Synapse (now known as Blizzard Entertainment), The 3DO Company (founded as SMSG, Inc.), Cyberdreams
Highest-renting titles according to Blockbuster Video
Blockbuster Video, an American chain of video rental shops, reported to GamePro that Sonic the Hedgehog for the Sega Genesis was the chain's highest-renting title in 1991. Blockbuster also released a list of the top 10 highest-renting NES titles of the year:
- "Street Fighter II". The Essential 50. 1UP.com. Archived from the original on May 22, 2011. Retrieved April 17, 2012.
- Patterson, Eric L. (November 3, 2011). "EGM Feature: The 5 Most Influential Japanese Games Day Four: Street Fighter II". Electronic Gaming Monthly. Archived from the original on March 14, 2017. Retrieved April 17, 2012.
- "Pro News Report" (PDF). GamePro. International Data Group. January 1992. p. 162.