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#101 Posted by notnert427 (2203 posts) -

Assassin's Creed 3 is a good game and Connor(Ratonhnhaké:ton) is a good protagonist I cared about and also a very nice man. Not everyone needs to be a suave rogue like Ezio Auditore or Edward Kenway, those two led relatively carefree lives until their paths led them to the assassin brotherhood. Connor never had that and he doesn't act like that because he is an outcast who knows that he is treated like an outcast and still tries to do his best to prove himself to his father and to represent his people, all the while "uh uh uh uh uh"-ing bad guys with his tomahawks. The homestead missions highlight the good-natured side of Connor and shows how much he cares about the homesteaders.

Beat me to it. ACIII is mostly a very good game, and I enjoyed Connor and his story much more than the by-the-numbers "dashing hero" shit most of the rest of the AC series leans hard into.

Also, the love being shown to Dark Souls II here warms my cold heart. That is 100% a terrific game, and people act like it's crap because it's not the original.

I'll add my own. Burnout: Revenge is the best Burnout game.

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#102 Posted by Zirilius (1700 posts) -

Dragon Age II. I honestly love the entire Dragon Age series to a pretty similar extent, though each for different reasons. I don't know that I even really have a favorite game in the series, but Dragon Age II gets so much hate, me saying I like it as much as the other installments is probably just as crazy to some people as if I said it was my favorite in the series.

Dragon Age II was obviously one of the most rushed games of all time, and it shows in many ways. One way it doesn't show though is the writing, and that's one of the most important aspects of a story driven RPG as far as I'm concerned. The small scale, character driven story told over the course of a decade is just so different from pretty much any other fantasy game out there. The game explores so many interesting topics, and the way every character is written as deeply flawed, combined with being able to see their lives and the events of their city play out over a ten year period is fantastic. I also really love Hawke, probably my favorite Bioware protagonist.

I love that Dragon Age II, rather than being yet another "save the world from unspeakable evil" plot, is instead a game that explores complex political issues, religious indoctrination, abuse of power, the dangers of fanaticism, bigotry, the lines people will cross to combat oppression, and the personal issues and character flaws that arise in those involved in such matters.

Obviously the re-used assets and extremely limited scope of the environments that resulted from the rushed development was a bummer, but I can look past those things because so much else about the game gripped me so thoroughly.

You sir have said everything about that game that I say. I like you!

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#103 Edited by mezmero (3741 posts) -

I'm struggling with this because I'm trying to think in terms of the entry that is very clearly the lesser one of the series and not splitting hairs on slightly underrated entries that might secretly be the best games of the franchise (AC Black Flag, Saints Row IV, Arhkam City). Only one that comes to mind is Dark Souls 2. It admittedly doesn't have quite the level of mystique among the Souls/Borne lineage. All I know is that building my character class (full spellcaster with a magic short sword) was more enjoyable and less frustratingly obscure in DSII than it was in pretty much all of those other games.

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#104 Edited by Castiel (3473 posts) -

Bioshock 2 is a good choice. It's the best playing Bioshock game in my opinion and the music by Garry Schyman is bit more broad in terms af variety compared to the first Bioshock. Schyman gets to paint with a bigger musical brush and I think it really adds a lot to the world of Rapture.

Arkham Asylum. Asylum might seem like an odd choice for this topic but I have my reason for it appearing on this list. For a long time I didn't think this was a divisive choice but outside of GB a lot, like A LOT, of people really seem to prefer City over Asylum. My impression is that City seems to be the favorite of the Arkham games, in the same way that most people prefer Uncharted 2 over 1, according to most people on the internets. For me City might be my least favorite of the Arkham games but that's a different discussion. Asylum might be on the edge, since it still is a beloved game, but for a long time I thought the broad opinion was that it was also the best of the series but apparently most people seem to prefer City which is just crazy to me.

I will also defend AC III to a certain degree. It definitely has a few missteps but people seem to be quick to forget that it was the AC game that introduced the ship combat that so many people praise Black Flag for. I also liked the main protagonist journey and it was refreshing to see a big budget game tell a story from the perspective of a real American aka. a native American. Also the music by Lorne Balfe is amazing.

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#105 Posted by generic_username (943 posts) -

I'm not taking this one to my grave or anything, but I think Super Paper Mario is a good game. It's rough because I do still think it's a lesser entry in the franchise; I love the first Paper Mario to death and I think Thousand Year Door is one of the greatest games of all time. (Like, top 50. I could be convinced it's top 100, but no lower. Probably. There are, like, a lot of video games.)

But people hated Super Paper Mario when it came out because it wasn't what they wanted from a Paper Mario game. Which is fair. I also would rather have another Thousand Year Door. But being a disappointing follow-up to one of the greatest games ever made is a far cry from "bad video game." Super Paper Mario has incredible writing that gets laughs almost effortlessly, and a story that is genuinely touching in spots. It also has rad music, and I personally enjoy the kinda mediocre platforming a fair amount, too.

For a while, after the "it's not Thousand Year Door 2" conversation died out, I found that a lot of people shared that opinion. Then Sticker Star came out and managed to be actually terrible, which made Super Paper Mario look a lot better. Then Color Splash came out and fucked everything up, because there was now an extremely convenient narrative of "every Paper Mario after the second one was terrible."

Super Paper Mario is a good video game. It is the third-best Paper Mario game, not even close. On either end of the spectrum.

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#106 Posted by butterstick1 (42 posts) -

Dark Souls II is my favorite souls game. its definitely the worst souls game, yet still has the best story, most variety (in terms of environments and weapons), and it introduced all of the quality of life features that the series kept moving forward. the dlc is also fantastic. dark souls 2 is a personal journey. it's more about you, the player, rather than playing through "the chosen undead"s story. it has the most concrete story as well, whereas dark souls 1 has so kany holes and dark souls 3 doesnt really have a story, doesnt tie anything up, and actually leaves you with more questions when youre done. i really liked the tonal shift in 2 as well, the characters and themes were darker and more melancholic. its like the best soulslike spinoff game (and there are A LOT these days) except its actually official. i would love another dark souls by that director/team while Miyazaki works on the next thing.

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#107 Posted by aktivity (461 posts) -

Arkham Origins was a good game and had the best villain of all the games in Bane.

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#108 Posted by Ryuku_Ryosake (445 posts) -

The Gen 5 Pokemon games especially Black and White are the best Pokemon games hands down and I will fight anyone on this. The 5th Gen Pokemon games have been a punching bag for a lot of people for really no good reason. You got the memes about Vanilluxe line (the ice cream cone) and Trubbish (the garbage pokemon) designs. Those games seemed to get the maximum peak full brunt force of Pokemon was better back in MY day. I guess it just line up where the second wave rush of Gen 3 kids just hit the right age to join the Genwunners in chorus.

Ignoring that, the Gen 5 games were basically everything Pokemon fans had been clamoring for forever. It actually attempted to tell a story in a Pokemon games and was actually fairly successful at it. It didn't feel the need to completely bog it down with filler, hand holding, and hours upon hours of cutscenes like the current Sun and Moon games. Which is the other attempt at taking a serious crack at storytelling.

For all the gripes about the designs Gen 5 introduced more new pokemon than any other generation in the series after already having 500 other designs before it. That was a monumental task and to me at least they were incredibly successful. There definitely was aesthetic shift in the generation that make them not look like they belong with the rest but they are very cohesive as a unit. This was clearly intentional as in the original Black and White only Gen 5 pokemon appeared in those games until the end game. Which was stroke of genius and was the most bold and new shake up Gamefreak as ever done to the franchise but people crapped all over it.

Also very overlooked was just how well made those new pokemon were gameplay wise. Care was given to give just about every pokemon a good use a niche. They were usually given reasonable stats that made sense with what the pokemon was trying to do. Also unheard of in previous gens is that just about every pokemon has a classically good ability or new useful abilities instead of the flavor abilties a good chuck of pokemon got before. Clearly Gamefreak put thought into how the pokemon would actually play instead of just their design or to be dex filler.

Gamefreak clearly took the criticism that the Gen 5 got to heart. As the next Gen started with surface level concessions to the critics. 'Sorry we took away the old pokemon you loved last time; so here you get to start with a Gen 1 starter and we given them new Mega Evolutions, also we dropped the sprites for polygons like you asked, and we heard you don't like new pokemon; so here is only like 5 new lines outside of the staples were are obligated to have.' Also this draped over the most basic skeleton of a pokemon game. Followed by Gen 3 remakes because they wanted to remake sure you knew they didn't forget about you guys.

The current gen 7 games continued to suffer from this. "We finally removed gym battles like you asked. We also put in a story, You also still don't like new pokemon; so we remixed some Gen 1 pokemon and add a bare minimum of new pokemon again."

The smoke on the street is Pokemon Switch might be another Gen 1 remake. Oh boy.

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#109 Posted by Zeik (5192 posts) -

@ryuku_ryosake: Black/White is definitely the most fun I had with a Pokemon game since Gen 1. (Not that gen 1 was necessarily the best gen, that was just peak Pokemon obsession.) Keeping the main game to all new Pokemon was a big reason for that. After that game I thought I was back on board with Pokemon, but none of the sequels managed to keep my interest like that game did.

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#110 Posted by TheHT (15835 posts) -

Dragon Age II is one of the best games.

Best. Games.

Fantastic characters that feel like people and who have agency within the story (i.e they're not just your passive posse doing shit-all while you go on adventures and make decisions), a narrative that's essentially three distinct sagas, and the combat's... good. I dunno, I remember having more fun with the action than Inquisition, but less fun than Origins. It's not as tactical as Origins (which is what did it for me in Origins), but it's fun enough here hacking away at the droves of respawning darkspawn, eyeing up character builds, all that stuff.

In any case, the biggest draw here is the storytelling and character interactions.

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#111 Posted by The_Nubster (4087 posts) -

I'm all in on BioShock 2. It's the only BioShock game I've enjoyed, and the only one with a story and themes worth giving a damn about. BioShock 1 and Infinite are complete trainwrecks in the narrative department and they both coasted so heavily on the wow-factor of the art direction, but BioShock 2 actually follows through on its ambition and delivers a story full of character moments that are incredibly touching and managed to make the player reflect on their actions beyond a binary good/evil. And on top of that, they managed to make hacking fun, allowed dual-wielding, and expanded on the idea of traps in a way that actually made them fun to engage with. Prepping for the Big Sister battles and the collections is always tense and fun.

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#112 Posted by HatKing (7450 posts) -

@draugen: I don't think there's any more busywork than in any other Mass Effect, or Bioware game. At least it makes a little more sense in Andromeda since you're in a new place without an infrastructure. Ryder tracking down a contraband wine bottle seems like a thing a person in their position might do, versus similar tasks in the earlier games. But that stuff can be tedious, so I get it.

The big thing I take away looking back at the earlier games while I was playing through Andromeda is how standards have shifted in acting and writing. Those earlier games are really corny now. Shepard is flat like a bad Saturday morning cartoon hero. Ryder has a personality, a sense of humor, and actually feels like they're a part of their story. It is actually understandable how somebody would be their friend or significant other. Shepard's interactions come off way too binary.

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#114 Posted by sammo21 (5968 posts) -

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3

While the conclusion of the "Modern Warfare trilogy" is sort of a let down, especially with how Soap is thrown away, I still had a blast with the campaign and I still think the multiplayer was the most balanced the game has ever seen. The inclusion of being able to contribute to streaks by being a productive teammate (not just an ungodly killer without ever dying) made it fun to be a decent player who wasn't 30:1 with his kdr. Not to mention they had co-op modes that weren't the boring and deplorable Zombies mode that every title gets arbitrarily slapped with now (probably by Activision mandate).

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#115 Posted by nutter (2110 posts) -

@theht: You’re not wrong. If you want gameplay, Orgins is the way to go.

If story is your game, Dragon Age 2 is the best in the series by a mile.

Inquisition was probably my least favorite, but the gameplay was solid and the open world was cool.

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#116 Posted by nutter (2110 posts) -

@castiel: I disagree vehemently on Bioshock 2 being a decent game, but I’m with you on Asylum. Best of the Arkham games, despite that stupid boss fight. Oddly, Arkham City ended very nicely.

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#117 Posted by DasaKamov (1105 posts) -

@sparky_buzzsaw: I'm late to the party, but HELL YEAH someone else knows about the Quest for Glory Series, and Hell Yeah, Shadows over Mordavia was great. The bugs were unfortunate (particularly the game-breaking on one the slimy slope, which would always crash to DOS unless you tweaked the detail sliders *just so*), but QFGIV just oozed atmosphere in a series which usually took itself...well, not seriously, but very *passionately*.

Also, effing John Rhys-Davies as the narrator was top. Notch.

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#118 Edited by Tom_omb (1073 posts) -

@fnrslvr@qrowdyy

I remember being let down by the exploration of WW on the initial release, but replaying the HD edition, those complaints were non existant. The sailing is also improved. I played Black Flag around the same time and they felt pretty similar.

What's your specific complaint about the combat? I like to hold up WW's combat as some of the all time best. The freedom of being able to toss enemy weapons may be the inspiration of BotW's weapon system and open spirit. The counters and feel like a precuror to Batman combat. You could even pick pockets with the grappling hook. It may not be complicated and combo heavy, but I appriciate the elegance.

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#119 Posted by Zella (1275 posts) -

Assassin's Creed Unity is the best one in the series. You have a likable protagonist who has an actual struggle related to the game's world. You get to play around in a way under utilized setting in the French Revolution. The combat is stylish but your character is not an unstoppable killing machine. The equipment systems help encourage different styles. The co-op missions are totally fun when playing with a friend. The games looks absolutely gorgeous (when it isn't breaking).

It has plenty of issues, and some other entries do certain things better but I don't think any does as good of a job being an overall Assassin's Creed game than Unity does. The technical issues that plagued the game sadly made it so the general opinion of the game is poor. I also get how plenty of people would prefer 4 and Origins, and I think they are great games but just not great Assassin's Creed games.

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#120 Posted by Qrowdyy (366 posts) -

@tom_omb: The combat is over reliant on the counter mechanic, which makes sense, its an evolution of Zelda combat so they put it front and center. The real problem though is that Link's short arms and tiny sword,make it difficult to do anything except blitz enemies or wait to counter. There's no dipping in and out of melee range, no real point in knowing when to go for a vertical slash vs horizontal, all because Link's sword swings cover the range of a butter knife. Compare this to every Zelda game that came after WW, where Link's swords are as long as he is tall. That tells me Nintendo knows what I'm saying already.

That said the combat is the least important part of a Zelda game. Exploration and dungeons are far more important. Been meaning to try the HD edition to see if it fixes the issues I have with the game. One of these days...

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#121 Posted by Kamui97 (131 posts) -

Arkham City. Having never played asylum, city is still a masterpiece for me and flying around the city is still amazing.

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#122 Edited by Nulix (62 posts) -

Uncharted 3, incomplete narrative but in terms of set-pieces I don't think anything in the series conceptually matches the airplane one. Replaying it I forgot how much that game perfects the formula, and the threads that tie it together are a just a bit looser than 2 or 4.

Also, Crash Bandicoot: Twinsanity. I won't call it a great game but I would call it the third best Crash game by a long shot, after 2 & Warped. It was brimming with creativity.

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#123 Posted by druv (243 posts) -

Saints Row 2 is clearly the superior Saints Row.

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#124 Posted by The_Greg (538 posts) -