Best of 2012
My 20 favorite games of 2012.
My 20 favorite games of 2012.
Sets a high water mark for writing, empathy, and emotional resonance in games. Great voice acting and art style. Simple but effective and occasionally subversive point-and-click adventure mechanics carry the story, and the standout conversation system encourages organic and personal decision making. Also the literal GOTY, steadily gaining traction with each successful episode from April to November.
A painstakingly detailed, comfortingly nostalgic pixel dream world of puzzles, surprises and perspective oriented platforming. A rabbit hole that goes so deep it demands pen and paper to solve its most cryptic riddles. Slightly mad. Soundtrack of the year.
From bleak big picture maneuverings on a global scale to the one dice roll that needs to go just right in order to survive, it's a master class in strategy and tension that still manages to deliver that addictive "one more turn" impulse Firaxis does best.
P4G generously enriches a modern classic with additional story, dungeons and locations, better visuals, network functions, series extras and a host of welcome gameplay tweaks. Delightful and unforgettable, perfect for on the go.
Each attempt at FTL is another mini space adventure that randomly unfolds at your increasingly skilled command - even as the fate of your crew lies at the brutal mercy of the universe. Nerdy imagination fodder for all ages.
Created by a collective of genre experts, and it shows. A feature complete sim/arcade hybrid - real cars, open world, kudos, decals, variety, slick presentation, radio stations, a tastefully cliche-filled story mode, robust multiplayer and an inspired, beautiful setting.
Journey is a special game that leaves a mark. Strong themes, well paced and lovely to look at. The unique multiplayer component encourages cooperation on a primal level and deserves recognition.
A visual feast full of rich mythology and character, dramatic presentation and impactful QTE's that have a tendency to unfold into planet sized spectacles. Interactive anime sounds like it should be a pejorative, but not when it's done as expertly as this.
Technika's multitouch approach to rhythm games was a revelation in arcades, and while compromises have been made it still shines pretty damn bright on the small screen.
Improved combat, some well earned payoffs and some, ah, unforgettable moments. Multiplayer co-op is tactical and a surprising standout.
Satisfyingly precise gameplay. The various systems and on screen information work in concert with the responsive controls and fluid animation. Upgrade paths, collectibles and challenges leave lots of room for freedom and replayability.
Powerful first person stealth in an intriguing world of violent politics, scientific invention, hidden routes and plague ridden rats.
Genre mashup success story with lovely handcrafted animation and cohesive quality throughout.
A compelling playground for mayhem - dense and impressively realized. Gunplay and stealth work hand in hand, with the potential for exciting emergent moments in every scenario.
Short burst, high degree of difficulty challenges, pitch perfect controls and a wealth of user created content to draw from.
It's the rhythm minigame madness you know and love, all dressed up for consoles. Style for days, catchy little tunes.
A love letter for old school dungeon crawl fans, and a great gateway drug for potential newcomers.
Fever dream/nightmare fuel, hyperviolent and methodical top down murder simulator, audio and visual tour de force.
An over the top, B tier Sci-Fi action flick that delivers on style, compelling fiction and a variety of angry robots that shoot up real nice.
I did not learn all that much about fractions.
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