I've had many, many older Apple machines... What machines have I kept? My Apple IIgs stuff. (Currently cleaning out my other Apple II stuff as my Commodore things have sort of taken all of my available space). That being said, the classic Black and white Mac offers a unique gaming experience, not quite as wide in scope as a IIgs, but 'those' mac games are very appealing to me. Here is a small list of games that were coded specifically for mac, not ports and as such are very good:
-Rogue (Epyx): I maintain this is the best version of Rogue ever written. I am a huge Rogue fan too. This game crashes on any old Mac with ROMs never than an original SE.
-Shufflepuck cafe: I think this is the best version of Shufflepuck written. It's not that the action is better than any other color version, I guess it's the 1-bit graphics that holds it's charm.
-Pools of Radiance: I think the best version of this game. It's certainly the only version I would bother to replay. (It's successive sequels were crappt DOS ports that look and play tragically bad compared to this title)
-Arkaniod: The black and white graphics and certain charm of the old Mac lends itself surprizingly well to this game.
-Might and Magic: Another RPG coded for the mac. Again, it's sequels were ports, but the original was GREAT!
-Airborne: Another arcade. Great game.
-Quarterstaff: Another RPG. The closed thing to actual Dungeons and Dragons [probably] ever. However, it has an unfortunate bug that makes the game impossible to win. In my opinion the greatest infocom game written.
-Thexder: Amazing this game could be pulled off well in black and white.
Couple other games of note:
That being said, I still keep my Apple IIgs. I wanted one back in the day, but was too poor (I was a Commodore Kid). I love the sound chip and all in all the IIgs is better capable of arcade games. PLUS, you have access to pretty much ALL the 8-bit apple II stuff. These games will seem primitive compared to the 16-bit machines and even primative to those who had a C64 or Atari 800, but they are novel and a bit more impressive than say a CBM PET or Tandy Model 1-4. Here are a few impressive IIgs games:
-Captain Blood: Very well executed on the IIgs platform
-Arkanoid: A+ maybe my favorite version even over the Amiga.
-Rastan: WOW! The IIgs could do this?
-Bard's Tale: Looks and sounds great!
-Zany Golf: Really gives the Amiga version a run for it's money.
-Thexder: Maybe my favorite version.
-Silpheed: Very cool arcade game.
-The Immortal: Plays too slow really w/o an accelerator, but a great game with one!
-Tower of Myraglen: Rogue-like game with much a charm of it's own.
-LemmingsGS: Plays great, but you'll need 1.5meg RAM. Kind of a big deal back in the days, but cheap enough to obtain now.
Some 'Me too' games programmed to show the IIgs could do what was selling well on Macs (Even color Macs):
Some 'Why bother' stinkers (If I had bought these I would have felt SO ripped off, both games bested by C64 versions)
All said and done, most games that actually made it to a IIgs version are good games, but Apple crippling this machine with a SLOW CPU is a real drag. It's a neat machine, but accelerators are made of unobtanium and getting a very unable machine is harder than picking up a Mac Plus and a second floppy. I myself would still rather (and still do) have an Apple IIgs, but back in the day? I'm glad I was stuck with a C64 until I got my hands on an Amiga 500.
My vote between the two: If you onl;y have room for one, have the time and want/can build an Apple IIgs, go for the IIgs. If not, get a Mac Plus or Mac SE with a second floppy, hard drive, or Floppy-EMU (bigmessowires.com) and call it good. Feel free to PM me if you are interested in what is really needed for a minimal IIgs setup, perhaps I can save you some research time. An old Mac and a Floppy-EMU and you are ready to go.
After the way Apple treated this machine and the customers that bought it? If I had bought an Apple IIgs new, I would have never bought another Apple product again.