I've been deliberating over my list for game of the year for weeks now. Most every major release I've played within the past few weeks. After two game dry years, I focused on older titles. I'm also poor, so I spent a lot of time playing free and cheap indie titles. With holiday gifts and absurd Steam sales, I've finally caught up! I thought it would take me weeks to decide, but luckily, I've blasted through massive amounts of gaming, and have come to a decision!
Now, before I begin, I just want to express my disappointment that the stuff doesn't publish the moderator lists anymore. Honestly, we're not important to merit that kind of attention over guys like Ed Boon, but it was neat to have my poorly written list posted for all to see in Giant Bomb's birth year (I mixed up then and than in my first image caption, way to go me).
So, without further ado, here is another poorly written list from BoG:
10. The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword
If I’m being 100% honest with all of you, Zelda is kind of in this spot by default. It was between this game and NetPac, and I was seriously considering NetPac. While I enjoyed Skyward Sword, it’s really only revealed to me that the Zelda formula is exhausted. It’s a fun game with some neat motion mechanics, but Link needs some new tricks.
9. King Arthur's Gold
I doubt many of you have any clue what King Arthur's Gold is. I actually made a forum post about the game months ago, and a whopping total of one person responded. It's a shame. KaG is a free-ish, side-scrolling multiplayer game. Imagine Minecraft, only 2D, and focused on competitive multiplayer. You and your teammates gather resources and build stuff, while fighting off your approaching enemy. It's a really simple concept, but a whole lot of fun. Building up fortifications and destroying your opponents' is a very satisfying experience. It should also be said that this is the first game of its kind that I've enjoyed enough to come back to. If anyone played Gang Garrison, this is mechanically similar, but so much more fun. I highly recommend it to all of you; it's got an active community, and is tons of fun!
8. Pokémon Black/White
Before I begin, I want to thank Microsoft word’s spell check function. I had originally typed Pokemon, but Microsoft Word noticed my error, and advised I change it to Pokémon. That’s really in the dictionary?
I was almost certain that Pokémon Pearl would be my last Pokémon game. Pearl was the first game in the series that I didn’t see through to the end, and I decided I was done playing the same thing over and over again. Well, I was wrong. When I returned this summer, an old friend contacted me, and told me I needed to play Pokemon with he and his girlfriend. I gave in to peer pressure, and was hooked on catching ‘em all once again. They found another (married) couple to join us, and we all had tons of fun. Deerling eases the pain of being the fifth wheel.
6. Alice: Madness Returns
Alice is an odd addition to my list. Conceptually and visually, Alice is one of the most creative games in years. Each new environment is a pleasure to explore, thanks to remarkable artwork. It’s the best looking game of the year thanks to creativity over technology. You’ll travel through a decrepit English neighborhood, magical forests, underwater fish cities, and more. Each environment is more spectacular than the last. Sadly, the gameplay lacks that creativity. It’s fun, but very repetitive. I loved playing Alice, but it could have been so much better.
5. Where is my Heart?
2D indie puzzle platformers are almost as common as FPS games these days, but I love them so much more. Where is my heart is a very neat little puzzler that is set apart from its genre cousins by chopping up each level into little windows, and scattering them across the screen. Not only must you solve the clever puzzles, you must do so with a warped view of the playing field. I couldn’t put my PSP down! Add in excellent, simplistic visuals and sound, and you’ve got an excellent little game.
I want to thank Patrick Klepek for this one, as I wouldn’t have purchased it were it not for his articles. I don’t like Breakout style games. Each iteration seems to be the exact same game. Wizorb doesn’t do much different from other Breakout style, to be honest, but it sucked me in. I finished the main quest in one sitting, and then went back for more. The NES style visuals and music were excellent, and the fusion of RPG and Breakout was creative and fresh. I’m still playing Wizorb, trying to get higher on that score list. If you don’t have it, get it on Steam as soon as it is released
3. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
I like Skyrim for the same reasons everyone else likes Skyrim.
Oh boy, Jamestown. Jamestown is awesome. The history/sci-fi fusion is awesome and hilarious, first of all. Martians and conquistadors? Yes. Most importantly, though, is the gameplay. This is the SHMUP genre at its best, and the best the genre has seen since Ikaruga. I would argue that Jamestown is better than Ikaruga due to its being more accessible. It’s got some well-designed levels, multiple difficulty settings, and the ability to play each level individually or all at once in Gauntlet mode. The game also has tons of bonus challenges that put you in interesting predicaments. I still haven’t conquered the conquistador, but I’m still trying! Any time I can get four people together, we let Spaniards know what’s up. Jamestown is an underappreciated classic.
2. Portal 2
Thanks are due to Valve, for making this game available for fewer than ten dollars last week. Portal 2 was the game I wanted to play most this year, and didn’t because of money. Portal 2 does exactly what it needed to do. Expand the Portal universe, bring more laughs, and more great puzzles. I honestly can’t think of how Valve could have made this game any better than it is. That’s a high compliment considering the games high expectations. Portal 2 is a guaranteed classic. For science!
1. Rayman Origins
Wow, Rayman, this game is too good. A few weeks ago, a user on GiantBomb made the comment that this is the best platformer since Yoshi’s Island. I wholeheartedly agree, and Yoshi’s Island is one of my favorite games ever. Rayman gets it all right. The game is full of variety, and has tons of cool tricks and challenges. You’ve got the floating levels, running on walls, and those crazy fun/difficult treasure chase levels. Other modern sidescrollers like New Super Mario Brothers are great fun, but never quite hit the mark. They introduce neat concepts, like Rayman, and then underutilize them. Rayman recognizes when something is fun, and gives it to you in perfect portions, and at a perfect pace. Worth mentioning also is how gorgeous the game is. It looks like a cartoon. The environments are as varied and fun as the gameplay itself.
I’ve played this game every day with my sister since I received it on Christmas, and we’re still having loads of fun, and have yet to complete the game. If you haven’t played it, you must go and purchase it. It’s the best game this year, no doubt. If you don’t see it on someone’s top ten list, this is because they haven’t played it. Rayman Origins is magic.
2011's 2010 Game of the Year(it should be noted, I didn't play any games in 2010, I purchased and played anything from that year within the past few months).
VVVVVVV is mind-blowingly good. I played it from start to finish, and still run time trials on a daily basis when I have a spare moment.
Runner-up: Mass Effect 2
2011's 2009 Game of the Year (because I wasn't around in 2009 either)
Noby Noby Boy
Ok, so I was around for a few months in 2009, enough to play Noby Noby Boy way more than an adult should.
Runner-up: Uncharted 2 (may have been my favorite had my save not been deleted when I was halfway through)
Game I most wanted to play, but didn't
Bastion (and Terraria)
Game that is the reason I will ban my brother from my PS3
Batman: Arkham City
He got the game for his birthday yesterday, and won't let me play. It's my PS3, you idiot!