Game of the Year 2012

List items

  • Sleeping Dogs was the most fun I had in gaming in 2012. I couldn't stop playing! The driving physics were good (much better than GTA 4), the fighting was almost as good as Arkham City, the chases were miles better than AC3, and the story was a lot of fun, and it ended well! Which was rare this year!

  • Journey was the most visceral and emotional gaming experience I had this year. It was beautiful, it controlled well, but all of that is second to the remarkable coop experience it gave you. I was playing with the same person, pretty much the whole time, then at one point he got killed by a monster, but my Journey didn't end there.

  • I'm not big on RTSs, if that's even what this is, but I had an amazing time in this game. The choices you are forced to make, for the good of your dynasty are tough. The strategy is fun, and there is something exciting about marrying the daughter of a king, then assassinating all her siblings so that your dynasty can inherit an entire nation.

  • I thought adventure games were dead, but the Walking Dead proves that was false. This game was not without its faults, but the story was deep and emotional, and it had some of the best characters of the year. The episodic format really shines in this one.

  • I can never get enough crazy in my games, and this was definitely crazy! I think it's Metal Gear Solid, meets Blade Runner, in the style of Gears of War. The only complaint I had about the game was that the physics were a little wonky. That was easily forgivable as the game is great fun, and the story is completely bonkers! Cain for life!

  • I always enjoy stealth games, like Deus Ex, so I had to give Dishonored a try. Naturally once I got past that first level, I was hooked! It had a weird style to it (see above, I like weird) and played very smoothly. The overall story wasn't particularly great, but the world in this game really stood out, and each mission, with multiple paths to completion, ultimately made up for it.

  • I like tactical games. I was looking forward to XCOM and it delivered. It got me attached to my teammates, it was challenging, and just fun to blow up aliens! The systems in this game are so pure and punishing that it easily deserves the recognition it's getting.

  • Yes yes yes, it is almost universally agreed that Xenoblade Chronicles is a better game. No no no I don't care! I liked the simple tale The Last Story told. There's something to be said for the fairy tale-esque medieval story. I've been in a head space that committing to an 80 hour epic is just too much, so the 20 concise hours of The Last Story really made for a great experience. Not to mention the inventive combat, which was a weird combination of ARPG and cover based shooters.

  • The year of the downloadable continues in Hotline Miami. This game is incredible, it's brutal, and it sounds amazing. There's not much else to say except that everyone should give this game a try, it's a lot of fun.

  • I struggled to decide between Far Cry 3 and Asura's Wrath for the 10th spot on my list. I don't usually go for FPS games, thankfully Far Cry 3 is a lot more than that. It scratched the exploration itch I was hoping I'd get from Assassin's Creed III (AC3 totally dropped the ball in that area this time around, the synchronizing doesn't fill out the map? That's not fun!) The Story in FC3 was not good. I didn't find it as offensively bad as everyone else seemed to, however. Maybe that was because I played it while watching everyone freak out about how badly it ends, so it didn't bother me at all. Best mission of the year: Burning the marijuana fields.