I didn't see a thread, direct me if I missed it, etc. What's something in gaming that surprised you the most, in a good way? It could be a specific game that came out of nowhere or an overall industry trend or piece of news. Here's some of mine, and would love to hear some of yours.
Surprisingly good game:
. I didn't hear about this game or the studio behind it until the quick look. I normally don't play anything resembling a rogue-like because I like progression systems and hate that feeling of starting over completely after every death. The feeling of challenge and thinking you've hit a wall, only to break through that wall by getting a few more upgrades or just getting better at playing the game was amazing. And what followed on the other side was an ever bigger challenge, that just kept ramping up (for the most part, new game+ boss scaling was wonky at times) Not only did I become completely consumed by this game and played through new game +3, but it got me to test the waters in a style of game that I normally ignore as not for me. I went on to play
because of it and had a blast with that too, despite not being able to beat the final boss ship. Next up,
Surprising trend: Lots of really good
games. I'm mainly play games on a PC, and get a console or handheld for those few exclusives, and I always wish that I could play those few portable games on a bigger screen with a controller, Gamecube GBA Player style. I bought a 3DS last year but largely ignored it, but this was the year that justified the purchase, and then some. I played my 3DS this year way more than any console, and if I discount MMOs I probably played more 3DS than big budget PC games. I recently locked in my top ten list for the year, and in a year with a ton of great games coming out everywhere, three out of those ten games were on the 3DS. And additionally there are four games that I didn't get to this year but probably would have been in contention for my top ten.
Surprising news: Steam Family Sharing: While it's not out of beta yet, and not completely perfect and bug free, the concept is really exciting to me. I have a younger brother in college who also follows Giant Bomb closely and tries to keep up with current games. We both have built up a Steam library with hundreds of games. What usually happens is one of us will play a game, really enjoy it, and convince the other they need to buy and play it too. Not only does this present an opportunity to save some money on games, it's also a really great way to try out a game before you buy it, whether to see if you like it or how it runs on your system. If only this had come out 2 years ago...