My Top Ten Games of 2012
Here is a list of my favorite games from this year. Obviously I explain my choices in the comments. This list is crazy to me because of the fact that I think all the games were purchased for $20 or less, many of which were in the $15 price range. So 8 of these games cost me ~$15 * 8 = $120. That's a testament to how hard small teams are working to make compelling experiences. Many of the games in my top ten this year just happened to be either my type of game or something that I had been itching for in gaming. All of them explained some sort of dialogue in a compelling way, whether through story or mechanics, or in many instances, both. As someone who is continually growing interested in the game industry and game design it's been an inspiring year to see both great big budget releases and small indie titles that do unique things in terms of gameplay and narrative.
Here is a list of some honorable mentions:
Halo 4, Sleeping Dogs, Dishonored, Spec Ops: The Line, Frog Fractions
Halo 4 was a fantastic entry in the series and I enjoyed just about everything about it, but it did have some problems by going down a pretty typical story arc for a series that didn't need it and many of the enemies/weapons ended up being more of the same. It is, however, one of the most beautiful games of this generation and having new ways to fight dudes in a different part of the Halo universe is fantastic.
Sleeping Dogs is a great open world game and the combat is amazing. The combat plays like the combat from Batman: Arkham (City and Asylum) and that turns out some of the best parts of the game. Add onto this a more interesting story then I was expecting and you've got a good excuse to visit Hong Kong in Sleeping Dogs.
I have not finished Dishonored yet and I feel like I haven't put enough time into it to really give a final say on it. Even though I have not finished it, it is still more compelling than many sequels that were released this year and I find the mechanics to be incredibly interesting. This would likely be higher if I didn't think that I needed to put more time into it.
Spec Ops: The Line gives you a pretty generic shooter at first but then turns that into a truly compelling experience by delivering a gut-wrenching story. The message behind Spec Ops the line is one of the most intense you are likely to experience in all of gaming, even though I can't claim to understand it 100%. If I didn't think another game (Hotline Miami) didn't portray a very similar message better and with less boring gameplay, this would certainly be higher up on my list.
Frog Fractions: http://twinbeardstudios.com/frog-fractions
You either know why this game is amazing or you didn't give it enough of a play.