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Best of 2012

My fourth year of making a best of list. It's really fun to go back and see what I did/didn't like from this generation!

List items

  • Is there a more feel good story for the year than XCOM turning out to be such a fantastic game with so much to offer? I knew the impressions before release, but I don't think anyone would have expected it to show up and be the best turn based strategy game in years. I play this on my PC, and I haven't been disappointed ONCE.

  • This is one I played the heck out of for my 360. All that could have been said has. I'm just happy to play the DLC and even more happy to play through it multiple times. It's probably 1/3 longer then I had anticipated before release. My one knock, and it's still my one knock, is that those really special guns that do crazy things are far too few.

  • I never expected this game to be anywhere near as good as the other entries in the series. The first announcement trailer was very sketchy and I hadn't known the studio was full of racing game pedigree. I might want to just chalk this up to 2012, the year of unexpectedly great games. The one thing that sets it apart from other open world racing games is how the road feels hand made at every turn. All of them blend together seamlessly. I never found myself being blindsided by a turn I hadn't anticipated or anything out of place. This game rocks!!!

  • Diablo 3 seems to have cooled off quite a bit after its release but I certainly haven't forgotten the piles of hours I spent trudging through the depths of hell. It's a great looking and playing game! The story was pretty forgettable but I hadn't had much fun playing a dungeon crawler in a long time before Diablo 3.

  • Like Diablo 3 on my list, Torchlight seems to have cooled since release. I loved the art style in both these games and everything was improved from the first game. The loot is so much easier to identify and the menu's convey info far more effectively than the first Torchlight. It's a great game that deserves to be supported. I would love to see this same team make another "genre" game set in a different place.

  • Ah, Halo 4 finally came out and didn't disappoint. Even with the game being a really difficult point to point button smasher/Cortana uploading simulator, everything friggin' shines. I found the story to be really good, and at times pretty awful. It might not be the best way to lead into a brand new trilogy, and the end leaves a lot to be desired. But I'm also not crazy, and I'm with everyone else when I say the game looks so amazing. I don't think I've played anything that looks so great. It feels like a first start for 343, but they couldn't have done any better starting from scratch. Most of all, I appreciate the 343 messages that bookend the game. While many of those loud mouth fans don't deserve a note of appreciation, it was a really great touch for an insanely popular game.

  • I hope we see more of these games. Jurassic Park was such an awful game, I couldn't believe The Walking Dead was as strong and emotionally effective as it ended up being. It's quietly a landmark in gaming.

  • I loved Darksiders 1. I love Darksiders 2.