Best of 2012

Took a lot of thinking to settle on a toplist for 2012, it being a top 20 says a lot, I think? :P A theme of the year, for me, has been games that manipulates your feelings, and games that I'm very torn about. <br>

In short, it's been a weird year for games - but the games have been great.

List items

  • I have spent far more time thinking about, talking about and playing Mass Effect 3 than any other game this year. With over a hundred hours in the multiplayer, that alone places it high on my list. All of the amazing singleplayer moments, only pushes it higher. <br>

    It's a tainted first, though. Between the poorly handled end (sure, it's been largely 'fixed' now, but the first experience is what I remember) and Leviathan being DLC (paid too, to make matters worse!), I'm really torn about placing it first, but there you have it.

  • I'm frustrated by the fact that I'm tired off TellTale Games' games. It's frustrating because it's unfair to TTG, because they make good games. Despite that TTG fatigue, The Walking Dead was powerful, and I'm impressed that they didn't push the ONE BUTTON I expected them to (though they do hint at it early).

  • Fun. Slick. Smooth. SMASH THE SYSTEM! EXPLOSIONS!?!

  • This is so good. It's so pleasant. It's wonderful. It just makes you feel good and happy (except for that single one difficult place). And I'm super depressed that I can't get people to play it despite BUYING IT FOR THEM. WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH THE WORLD!?

  • Syndicate was a roller coaster for me, from the moment it was announced. It was pretty obvious it was going to be an FPS, seeing as how it was Starbreeze developing it. But Starbreeze is good studio, so that was promising. The singleplayer was a bit disappointing - passable, but largely unremarkable. <br>

    Where Syndicate gets it's wings, and really soars is in Multiplayer, where it pushes you to master the combat system. And then the game really CLICKS.

  • The Fez moment... did things that I didn't think could happen anymore. That first weekend was... insane? I don't know if it'd be as good for someone getting into it now (unless you are extremely patient and avoid spoilers!). But that weekend is going to stay with me for a long time.

  • Another game of feeling. This time? Apathy. I didn't think that I liked these kinds of games anymore, but a mix of the TWITCH gameplay, the apathy inducing high-speed restarting and the amazing music creates a package that is both disgusting and compelling.

  • I find it odd that I'm placing XCOM so far down. The franchise is one of my favorite franchises ever... but despite really liking XCOM. Despite loving how uncomfortable and worried the game made me... it just wasn't the game I wanted it to be. Sure, it updated the classic game very well... but it doesn't actually do anything new. Except for the Sectopod, I was ready for each of the challenges - and using strategies I learned in the first 2 games, I was able to make it through most of the game without losing any important soldiers. It's... weird.

  • Unlike others, I *knew* in my heart of hearts that Asura's Wrath was going to be awesome. Then again, I don't hate Quick Time Events though, which might just be the difference.

  • I still don't know if I actually like Spec Ops, but it made me think, and I like that.

  • I'm pretty tired of Open World games. I think that Open World mechanics are typically an excuse to make a bad game. But Sleepy Dogs does some things different enough that they are interesting... and it approaches a location that is rarely seen in games.

  • Another of those thinking games. At first, I didn't really like it, it was dumb and the shooting was bad. Then... shooting got good, and it got clever. It asks some classic "what is alive" questions, and does great things with dismemberment on your robot enemies. I really liked Binary Domain.

  • Here's the thing. I enjoyed Journey... but that magic moment people talk about? I didn't have it. The side-ways slide felt good, but...

  • Very classic point and click adventures, with a story that I didn't see coming. Very refreshing - and it made me look into the other Wadjet Eye Games' games.

  • The Darkness 2 is brutal. The first level of the game does things that I didn't expect it to... and while it doesn't quite manage Starbreeze's level of gutpunching - it does come close. Also, the Darkness' voice acting is amazing.

  • Dishonored is a great game, set in a very interesting world. But as clever as it is, it just didn't connect with me the way many other games this year did.

  • Vaas is an amazing character. I really enjoyed how different he was to anything else we've seen in games, but the story disappointed me... and it's a shame that you don't get access to the wingsuit earlier - because that is a GAME CHANGER.

  • Mark of the Ninja is great, rare is a game that really makes you feel like a badass ninja.

  • I hated Max Payne 3 when I started playing it. I hated how it had left it's roots and become something else. Somewhere around "Angry American Gringo", that all changed - and I came around. Max Payne 3 is pretty good.