The Best...Around

Posted by Marino (4707 posts) -

I haven't posted anything here in a couple weeks.  What can I say?  It's been a busy couple weeks between mandatory overtime at work and moderating Dance Central Christmas parties.  Anyway, I put up my Top 10 list a week or so ago, but here it is again from the department of redundancy department.  I've also included some honorable mentions that I had to painstakingly axe from the list. 
 

Best of 2010

Marino: Best of 2010

1. Mass Effect 2

Far and away the winner as far as I'm concerned. Never before have I felt so attached to certain characters and scared to death that someone could possibly die based on my own decisions. There were numerous times I sat and deliberated for several minutes before making decisions that could affect the game in the smallest or largest of ways.  I've completed it twice so far. Once while I was laid up after having jaw surgery on a shitty TV that I could barely read the dialogue options. And after seeing the trailer for ME3, it just makes me want to go through ME2 a third time.

2. Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood

Hey! This game has a robust single player campaign! I love AC. Just everything about it. Yes, even the first one. The tweaks they made here were great and the utilization of your guild of assassins simply never stops being awesome.

3. Red Dead Redemption

I had no intention of even buying this, honestly. I completely ignored the Rockstar booth at PAX East.  I'm not waiting in line for an hour to play some western game! But as the release approached, I kept reading more and more about it. And that led to spending dozens of hours wandering aimlessly around New Austin. Well done, Rockstar Games. You got me.

4. Rock Band 3

Nearing perfection thanks to the refinements that have been made over RB2. The addition of "Pro" modes have added a new layer of difficulty and realism to the game. Passing a difficult song on Expert Pro drums never stops being satisfying. And the keys are a refreshing new challenge.  I don't know where Harmonix goes from here or if there is anywhere else TO go.

5. Sid Meier's Civilization V

Okay, look. I've never played Civ before. I have no idea why. But after Ryan's review and playing the demo on Steam, I just had to pick it up. Suddenly the end of September and most of October were dominated by world domination.

6. Monday Night Combat

The first time I heard about MNC was during the Gabe & Tycho Q&A session at PAX East. So we went and checked it out during the show and were immediately were hooked. You can't go wrong with bacon.

7. NBA 2K11

I hadn't played 2K since 2K5, but with the focus on Jordan's greatest moments, I had to give it a shot. This might be the best sports game ever made, not just best in basketball. Much like MLB The Show, I end up spending most of my time in the My Player mode where you play only one guy through a career. The way the game automatically integrates the real world NBA into the game is amazing. Just hopping into an "NBA Today" game is a great quick fix.

8. Super Mario Galaxy 2

Still pure, raw fun like the first game. More Galaxy certainly isn't a bad thing, but I couldn't rank it higher on my list because it's basically more of what we played two years ago. Still amazing fun though.

9. Enslaved: Odyssey to the West

No one does character animation like Ninja Theory. After Heavenly Sword and now this, I'm actually interested in the new DMC. And I've never cared about DMC at all. Enslaved isn't the greatest game ever or anything, but it should definitely be played by more people. The characters really carry the game, and you can't say that too often.

10. God of War III

Visually stunning and an almost non-stop ride from beginning to end. The first game set the standard of immediately having a boss battle at the beginning of the game, but GoW3 took it about 20 levels higher with the opening battle with Poseidon.

 
 
 

The B-Team

For a year that some people say was weak in comparison to recent years, I had trouble fitting my favorites on a list of ten.  When I finalized the list above, I felt kinda bad about it being so AAA-heavy and not having more downloadable, handheald, or indie games on there, but at the end of the day, I couldn't justify knocking some things off the list.  I also didn't want to let games of the last couple months influence the fun I had with games earlier in the year (i.e. GOW3 and Galaxy 2).  Anyway, here's a few of the games that I had to cut.  They are listed in no particular order...except alphabetically.  I'm kinda OCD.
  
BoxGame

Halo: Reach 

I've never really been a fan of Halo.  I didn't get an Xbox until 2003 so I kinda missed that initial craze of Bungie's shooter.  I enjoyed what they did with ODST, and Reach simply took the storytelling up a number of levels.  Knowing from the beginning that this would be a depressing tale did not hamper the experience of living through the tale of Noble Team.

Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit

I really had no intention of buying this game.  After seeing the footage from E3, I just didn't understand how adding life bars to the Burnout formula was a good idea.  Obviously I didn't fully understand what they were going for here.  I picked it up on Black Friday for $30, and could not have been happier with that decision.  The autolog feature is simply genius.  Other games have used this concept of friendly competition, but Criterion has taken it to the nth degree.  The single player is great, but the online modes are where the game truly shines.

Pac-Man Championship Edition DX

Holy shit awesome.  What hasn't been said about how amazing it is that Namco was able to take Pac-Man and modernize it while still preserving that classic feel?

Picross 3D 

If you own a DS, you must own this game.  I haven't been able to agree with Jeff much on the GOTY deliberation podcasts, but I can't agree with him more on this game.  I just keep coming back to it.  I'm over 200 puzzles in and I haven't even made it to the Hard puzzles yet.

Poker Night at the Inventory 

Is this a great game?  No.  It's not.  But you don't buy this game to play a great poker game.  You buy this as a fan of one or more of the characters involved.  And if you are and you do, you will not be disappointed.  I don't think I've laughed so much playing a game in many years.  So, do yourself a favor and drop $5 on it.

Puzzle Quest 2  

"So you're combining Puzzle Quest and Diablo?  Are trying to fucking kill me?"  I overheard this from someone while at D3's booth at PAX East this year.  The answer is apparently "yes."  I haven't gotten very far in it, because it simply takes a lot of time to play this game.  But I still enjoyed it very much.

skate 3  

When the first skate came out, I didn't want to like it.  I'd always been a Tony Hawk fan and didn't want to accept another skateboarding game.  But, eventually, I came around.  Skate 3 is one of those games though that I think people forget came out this year.  The online integration in the game was pretty great, something that became a theme for EA games this year.

Split/Second

 
I fell in love with this game at PAX 09.  I must've played it three separate times and there was only one level playable at that point.  I got a chance to play it again at PAX East and knew it was a must buy.  The game does so many things right.  But as you progress through the game, about the time you get halfway through, the difficulty gets bat shit crazy.  Well, at least if you're trying to get gold on everything like I must...must do. *twitch*
Staff
#2 Posted by Cincaid (2956 posts) -

Nothing's ever gonna keep you down!

#3 Posted by Berezov (504 posts) -
#4 Posted by Video_Game_King (36272 posts) -
@CrazyChris said:

" Nothing's ever gonna keep you down! "

  
How the hell did we go from 2010 to 1985?
#5 Posted by xMP44x (2193 posts) -

Wait, another list that doesn't contain Mafia II? I'm wondering if I'm insane now considering the sheer quantities of people who seem to be overlooking the game. On the other hand I have heard nothing but good about Mass Effect 2, so that says a lot about the appeal of the game.

#6 Posted by Marino (4707 posts) -
@xMP44x: I didn't play Mafia II.  Can't say I had any real interest in it and the reviews didn't convince me otherwise.
Staff
#7 Posted by AhmadMetallic (18955 posts) -
@Marino said:
"

Best of 2010

Marino: Best of 2010

3. Red Dead Redemption

 I'm not waiting in line for an hour to play some western game! . "

 
 
Im sorry, that doesnt make sense ! if there are any fabulous themes that are severely ignored and unexplored in video games, its the wild wild west and.. the pirates theme perhaps.  
so, you werent gonna wait in line to play a ROCKSTAR GAMES (polished top notch AAA titles) WESTERN GAME? (a theme barely approached in video games)  
 
explain yourself young man !
#8 Posted by Marino (4707 posts) -
@Ahmad_Metallic: I was admitting it was a flawed notion and poor decision.  Although, waiting an hour for anything at PAX, where time is precious, is a difficult decision.  I've only done it a few times.  Most recently I waited over an hour for the Dragon Age II demo at PAX Prime 2010.
Staff
#9 Posted by AhmadMetallic (18955 posts) -
@Marino said:
" @Ahmad_Metallic:  Although, waiting an hour for anything at PAX, where time is precious, is a difficult decision.  I've only done it a few times.  Most recently I waited over an hour for the Dragon Age II demo at PAX Prime 2010. "
oh i guess you're right there :P

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