Level design and abilities in this game inform you about the characters as much as listening to them talk does. Genius.
It uses gameplay mechanics to tell its story.
Played in a specific way, it tells the most amazing story. Which means it also lets the player break its perfect flow. Such is the price of interactivity.
Bioshock starts with what seems like a jarring example of "video game logic" and brilliantly twists it into a part of the story.
5. Alan Wake
Its "episodic" format makes it one of the best paced stories in games. Brilliant use of foreshadowing and (both licensed and original) songs.
Great, wordy comedy used in a completely unintrusive way.
7. Assassin's Creed
Throughout the game, it subtly introduces the actual plot of the series while keeping the period drama fairly interesting.
8. Assassin's Creed II
While the game focuses on gibberish period drama, it also expands on the series' meta-story in exciting new ways. Unmatched sense of mystery.
9. Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City
These DLC episodes expand on the base game in a way that's quite special. Makes Liberty City feel like a real place.
10. Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis
The path system alters the story in small ways, but they're significant enough to introduce replayability into the genre. That's why it's my favorite example of the genre.
11. Halo 2
It took a game with almost no story or characters and built a huge universe around it.
12. Gears of War 2
This is a joke.