1997 saw many sequels and prequels in video games, such as GoldenEye 007, Star Fox 64, Tomb Raider II, Final Fantasy VII, Ultima Online, and Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, as well as new titles such as Everybody's Golf, I.Q.: Intelligent Qube, Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee, Gran Turismo, Diablo, Grand Theft Auto, Fallout and PaRappa the Rapper.
- June 19–21 – The 3rd annual E3 is held in Atlanta, Georgia, United States.
- October 4 – Gunpei Yokoi (1941–1997) dies after a double car accident.
- November – Interactive Entertainment Merchants Association (IEMA) launched.
- TSR, Inc., the owner of the Dungeons & Dragons tabletop role-playing game, was acquired by Wizards of the Coast.
- 3D Realms begins production of the infamous Duke Nukem Forever, winner of numerous vaporware awards.
- A scene from the Pokémon anime show (based upon the highly successful games) from December 16, 1997, causes 685 Japanese children to have seizures, causing Nintendo to make a statement proclaiming the safety of the Pokémon games from fear that the games would cause a similar effect, the episode to be permanently removed from circulation, and the featured Pokémon in the episode (Porygon) hasn't made an appearance in the Pokémon anime since.
- The popular online gaming portal Cool Math Games went online for the first time.
Best-selling games (Japan)
|1||Pokémon Red / Green / Blue||Game Boy||3,995,988||Game Freak||Nintendo||RPG|
|2||Final Fantasy VII||PlayStation||3,277,290||Squaresoft||Squaresoft||RPG|
|4||Final Fantasy Tactics||PlayStation||1,237,328||Squaresoft||Squaresoft||Tactical RPG|
|5||SaGa Frontier||PlayStation||1,057,263||Square Product Development Division 2||Squaresoft||RPG|
|6||Everybody's Golf||PlayStation||1,023,168||Camelot Software Planning||Sony Computer Entertainment||Sports|
|7||PaRappa the Rapper||PlayStation||761,621||NanaOn-Sha||Sony Computer Entertainment||Rhythm|
|8||I.Q.: Intelligent Qube||PlayStation||749,138||G-Artists||Sony Computer Entertainment||Puzzle|
|9||Tamagotchi||Game Boy||746,383||Tom Create||Bandai||Breeding simulation|
|10||Mario Kart 64||Nintendo 64||731,385||Nintendo EAD||Nintendo||Kart racing|
|Release||Title||Windows / DOS||4th Gen||5th Gen||Handheld||Arcade|
|January 3||Diablo||Yes||N/A||PS1 (1998)||N/A||N/A|
|January 14||Tengai Makyō: Daiyon no Mokushiroku||N/A||N/A||Sat||N/A||N/A|
|January 31||Final Fantasy VII (Japan)||1998||N/A||PS1||N/A||N/A|
|February 5||DoDonPachi||N/A||N/A||Sat (September 18), PS1 (1998)||N/A||Yes|
|February 10||Mario Kart 64||N/A||N/A||N64||N/A||N/A|
|February 27||The Lost Vikings 2||April 30||SNES||PS1 (May), Sat (May)||N/A||N/A|
|February 28||Blast Corps||N/A||N/A||N64||N/A||N/A|
|February 28||Independence Day||Yes||N/A||PS1, Sat||N/A||N/A|
|February 28||Mega Man 8||N/A||N/A||PS1, Sat||N/A||N/A|
|February 28||Turok: Dinosaur Hunter||November 30||N/A||N64||N/A||N/A|
|February 28||Interstate '76||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|March 20||Castlevania: Symphony of the Night||N/A||N/A||PS1, Sat (1998)||N/A||N/A|
|March 20||Tekken 3||N/A||N/A||PS1 (1998)||N/A||Yes|
|March 26||Vandal Hearts||N/A||N/A||PS1, Sat (November 27)||N/A||N/A|
|March 30||The Last Express||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|March 31||Need for Speed II||Yes||N/A||PS1||N/A||N/A|
|April 30||Fighters Megamix||N/A||N/A||Sat||Game.com (1998)||N/A|
|April 30||Star Wars: X-Wing vs. TIE Fighter||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|May 31||MDK||Yes||N/A||PS1 (1998)||N/A||N/A|
|June 20||Sonic Jam||N/A||N/A||Sat||Game.com (1998)||N/A|
|June 20||Final Fantasy Tactics (Japan)||N/A||N/A||PS1||N/A||N/A|
|June 26||Dungeon Keeper||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|June 30||Star Fox 64||N/A||N/A||N64||N/A||N/A|
|July 4||Jane's 688(I) Hunter/Killer||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|July 28||The King of Fighters '97||N/A||Neo, NeoCD||PS1, Sat (1998)||N/A||Yes|
|July 30||Carmageddon||Yes||N/A||PS1 (1999), N64 (2000)||GBC (2000)||N/A|
|July 31||Herc's Adventures||N/A||N/A||PS1, Sat||N/A||N/A|
|July 31||Warlords III: Reign of Heroes||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|August 1||Mega Man X4||1999||N/A||PS1, Sat||N/A||N/A|
|August 25||GoldenEye 007||N/A||N/A||N64||N/A||N/A|
|September 10||Silhouette Mirage||N/A||N/A||Sat, PS1 (1998)||N/A||N/A|
|September 11||Breath of Fire III||N/A||N/A||PS1||N/A||N/A|
|September 11||Hexen II||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|September 12||Shadow Warrior||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|September 18||Street Fighter Collection||N/A||N/A||Sat, PS1 (October 23)||N/A||N/A|
|September 19||Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee||Yes||N/A||PS1||N/A||N/A|
|September 24||Ultima Online||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|September 26||LEGO Island||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|September 29||Croc: Legend of the Gobbos||N/A||N/A||PS1, Sat||N/A||N/A|
|September 30||Close Combat: A Bridge Too Far||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|September 30||Panzer General II||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|September 30||Poy Poy||N/A||N/A||PS1||N/A||N/A|
|September 30||Total Annihilation||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|October 9||Star Wars Jedi Knight: Dark Forces II||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|October 15||Age of Empires||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|October 15||Mortal Kombat 4||1998||N/A||N64, PS1 (1998)||GBC (1998)||Yes|
|October 21||Grand Theft Auto||Yes||N/A||PS1 (December 12)||GBC (1999)||N/A|
|October 23||Steep Slope Sliders||N/A||N/A||Sat||N/A||1998|
|October 29||Riven||Yes||N/A||Sat, PS1 (November 30)||N/A||N/A|
|October 30||Culdcept||N/A||N/A||Sat, PS1 (1999)||N/A||N/A|
|October 31||Blade Runner||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|October 31||Colony Wars||N/A||N/A||PS1||N/A||N/A|
|October 31||The Curse of Monkey Island||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|October 31||PaRappa the Rapper||N/A||N/A||PS1||N/A||N/A|
|October 31||Zork: Grand Inquisitor||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|November 1||Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back||N/A||N/A||PS1||N/A||N/A|
|November 1||Shock Troopers||N/A||Neo||N/A||N/A||Yes|
|November 17||Sonic R||1998||N/A||Sat||N/A||N/A|
|November 18||Tomb Raider II||Yes||N/A||PS1||N/A||N/A|
|November 21||Diddy Kong Racing||N/A||N/A||N64||N/A||N/A|
|November 21||Worms 2||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|November 25||Myth: The Fallen Lords||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|November 27||Kirby's Dream Land 3||N/A||SNES||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|November 30||Bomberman 64||N/A||N/A||N64||N/A||N/A|
|November 30||Wing Commander: Prophecy||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|November 30||WCW vs. nWo: World Tour||N/A||N/A||N64||N/A||N/A|
|December 6||Quake II||Yes||N/A||PS1, N64 (1999)||N/A||N/A|
|December 11||Klonoa: Door to Phantomile||N/A||N/A||PS1||N/A||N/A|
|December 18||Grandia (Japan)||N/A||N/A||Sat, PS1 (1999)||N/A||N/A|
|December 18||Mega Man Legends||2001||N/A||PS1, N64 (2000)||N/A||N/A|
|December 21||Yoshi's Story||N/A||N/A||N64||N/A||N/A|
|December 23||Gran Turismo||N/A||N/A||PS1||N/A||N/A|
|December 31||Mortal Kombat Mythologies: Sub-Zero||N/A||N/A||N64||N/A||N/A|
- March 1 – The Nintendo 64 is released in Europe and Australia
- October 20 – Nintendo releases a smaller redesigned version of the SNES, the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (Model SNS-101) in North America.
- Junny releases PlayStation development software for PC
- Tiger Electronics releases the Game.com
- Activision acquires CentreSoft Ltd. and Raven Software
- Electronic Arts Inc. acquires Maxis
- GameTek filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and closed its doors in July 1998
- 2015, Inc. founded
- 4D Rulers Software, Inc. founded
- September – 4HEAD Studios created
- Bungie West formed by Bungie
- Conspiracy Entertainment Corporation founded
- Crave Entertainment, Inc. formed
- August – Human Head Studios, Inc. formed
- Illusion Softworks, a.s. founded
- April 15 – Irem Software Engineering Inc. founded
- Irrational Games LLC founded
- Mythic Entertainment renames itself from Interworld Productions after name dispute with another "Interworld" company
- THQ renamed from Toy Headquarters, Inc.
- Warthog PLC founded
- Nintendo vs Games City: Nintendo sues Games City for selling the Game Doctor and Doctor V64 backup devices for the SNES and N64 consoles. Nintendo wins the suit.
- Nintendo vs Prima Publishing: Nintendo sues Prima over copyrights to maps of the N64 video game GoldenEye 007. Nintendo loses the suit.
- Nintendo vs Sony Video Games: Nintendo sues Sony over copyrights about Mario games.
- Sega announces that the Sega Mega Drive (Genesis) has been discontinued.
- Sega Game Gear discontinued.
Critically acclaimed titles
- "Attendance and Stats". IGN. Retrieved May 21, 2015.
- "1997 Top 30 Best Selling Japanese Console Games". The Magic Box. Retrieved February 24, 2021.
- "Best Video Games for 1997". Metacritic. Retrieved February 18, 2019.
- "Highest-Ranking Games of 1997 (with at least 5 reviews)". GameRankings. Retrieved August 6, 2019.
- "Best Video Games for 1998". Metacritic. Retrieved February 17, 2019.
- "Highest-Ranking Games of 1998 (with at least 10 reviews)". GameRankings. Retrieved February 25, 2019.
- "Sid Meier's Gettysburg! for PC". GameRankings. Retrieved August 6, 2019.