365 Games To Play Before You Die

These are all the game that have appeared on my (ir)regular blog of the same title. They are in no particular order and I'm going to update it as I go along.

List items

  • As the updated Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition was just released it made sense to start with this game. Back in the 90's I was young and hadn't experienced many adventure games. So when my older brother told me to play this knew game he just bought I was blown away. This game wasn't just fun it was funny. The characters were memorable, the setting was novel, the dialogue was witty and the puzzles were just the right difficulty. From the first moment you find out your character's name is Guybrush Threepwood you know this game is going to make you laugh.

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    The game continued LucasArts' trend of not punishing players for getting things wrong like Sierra adventure games. Guybrush can never die but if you try to do something that won't work out he'll just say 'I don't think that's a great idea' or something of the sort.

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    The game was also the writing debut for one of the best game writers ever: Tim Schafer. Together with Ron Gilbert and Dave Grossman they crafted a story about a naive wannabe-pirate who must save the love of his life, Elaine, from the evil ghost pirate LeChuck. His adventure takes him around the where he must use his ingenuity and insult sword fighting skills to defeat LeChuck.

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    I'm really lucky that this was the first adventure game I'd played because it got me into a genre which has many great games and is recently seeing a resurgence with developers like Telltale and even LucasArts themselves after the release of some of their back catalogue on Steam. With the SE just coming out on XBLA and Steam you have no excuse to not play one gaming's masterpices.

  • This, surprisingly, was the first game that I ever played. I don't remember too much but just that I spent way too much time on my Amiga because of this. The game is a sequel to the original Bubble Bobble (something I didn't realise until much later because I always referred to it as just Rainbow Islands) but it gameplay mechanics are quite different. Your ability in the game is to create rainbows which can kill enemies and help you get to higher platforms.

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    Being very young at the time I didn't know the real depth the game had. There were three different ending depending on which items you collected along the way. It's all very complicated (no. 3 on the page) and was too much for my little head to grasp. That didn't stop me from enjoying Rainbow Islands and it's always got a special place in my heart as it was the game that got me into gaming.

  • Easily one of the best arena shooters of all time, Quake III is a classic and it was a game that popularised competitive multiplayer for many people. I never personally played that much multiplayer because I wasn't very great but I could always understand why people did enjoy. It was fast, frantic and rewarded highly skilled players.

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    A browser based version of the game, Quake Live, has entered beta so you can try to enter it if you want the same experience but with the convenience of being able to play the game in a browser. I haven't checked it out yet myself but I've heard it's just the same game, which isn't a bad thing.

  • It might be very recent but that doesn't stop Castle Crashers from being an extremely fun experience. I'd hadn't played many other side-scrolling beat 'em ups so CC's gameplay was still quite fresh to me. The ability to unlock new combos, weapons, characters and pets also stops the game from becoming repetitive and also adds a ton of replay value.

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    The biggest reason I added this game to my list is because it's the first game I played in co-op with my sister. Although she doesn't play many game CC's adorable visuals and easy to grasp controls made it something she would want to play and a game that we had a lot of fun completing together.

  • I'll tell you know that all the Half-Life (main) games will be mentioned in these blogs so be warned. This is probably the worst of all the Half-Life games but that doesn't mean it's a bad game at all. It's actually a great game but its major problem is that it's too short. That shouldn't be a problem for episodic games but Episode 1 is an episodic game done on Valve time.

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    The game itself plays just like all the others in the series and, most importantly, continues the story of the game. Episode 1 takes place immediately after the events of HL2 and puts you right back into the action as Gordon and Alyx must help evacuate City 17. Throughout the story we find out more about the Combine, get to know Alyx better, encounter Zombine and overall just further the HL mythos, which is all I could ask from the game.

  • As an RTS fan, Rise of Nations was a game that exceeded all my expectations. Though if I'd done some research into it I would have realised that it was in good hands from the start. Created by Brian Reynolds of Alpha Centauri, Civ II and Colonisation fame, this was the first game developed by Big Huge Games and what a way to start a games company.

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    The game didn't really bring anything brand new and took it's gameplay from RTS's before it like Age of Empires and C&C. What the game did best was take these mechanics and refine and improve them to create an engaging experience where there was always something going on. Things move at a frantic pace and before you know it you've developed from the medieval age, where you have knights and pikeman, to the modern age, where you have fighter bombers and ICBMs.

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    On top of all that RoN gave you a large selection of civilisations and units to choose from. I never felt like I was missing out on something while playing the game. Rise of Nations isn't the best RTS I've played but it's a damn good one and it'll keep you hooked for a long time.

  • For me KOTOR is my favourite Star Wars game. I'm not a person who cared to much for the actual Star Wars universe but KOTOR made me want to find out more about the galaxy far, far away because it was so well written. All the characters from Revan to Carth to Bastila and (especially) HK-47 are amazingly well thought out and you want to know more about them and their back story. On top of that you have a fleshed out galaxy to explore using the Ebon Hawk in which there are numerous side quests to choose from.

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    Choice is another big deal in KOTOR. In the end all your choices come down to the binary decision of choosing good or bad but it's still fun to be able to mold your character in the way you want. Also this is one of the games which popularised moral choices so it was still a relatively fresh concept at the time.

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    The creation of a great world didn't have any effect on the quality of the actual gameplay mechanics. The turn-based fighting of the game is designed in a way so it feels like your actually doing more then you really are. This makes the game more active and takes away from the grind of other RPGs.

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    As soon as the Star War license was given to BioWare it was inevitable that they would make a game that was a masterpiece. For all the talk of developers putting more emphasis on story BioWare is one of the few that actually follow through on it. If you're a fan of RPGs, good stories, Star Wars or just good games in general, then this is must play.

  • Peggle is one of those games that you plan to play for five or ten minutes but after your done you realise the whole day has gone by. The concept is so simple yet it's so addictive. It's a game which brings out the obsessive and the completionist in people as you're always trying to get the highest score in the least amount of shots.

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    This is one game which doesn't need a story at all yet the characters and their goals are so charming that you can't help but come engrossed in what little plot there is. It's also just fun to have lots of different abilities, whether it be Bjorn's Superguide or Kat Tut's Pyramid power.

  • The original Prince of Persia and Sands of Time are tied as my favourite games in the series. Sands of Time does everything you want in a PoP game: it's got great acrobatic movement, precise platforming, flowing combat and an immersive Persian environment, but it also adds the ability to control time.This mechanic is vital throughout the game and isn't just there so the publishers can put on the back of the box. Every time you make a mistake you can just rewind time and get back straight into the action and you don't have to go to an unnecessary loading screen.

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    Platforming is also at its purest in SoT. Every jump, leap and wall run chains together so smoothly and if I made a mistake I always thought it was something that I did wrong instead of something that was wrong with the game. The combat also fits in with the fast pace of the game as fights don't take too long and they always involve some sort of acrobatic manoeuvre to take down an enemy.

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    The story is also pretty good and you ending getting attached to The Prince and Farah and their quest to take down the Visor. I still don't understand why they had to create some sort of emo/goth Prince for the later games in the series and the dark tone of those game just wasn't a good fit in my opinion.

  • Who hasn't played this game? One of the most simplest and purest gaming experiences you could ever have and it still hold up even to this day. It's hard to believe that the game is nearly 30 years old and it just shows you how far gaming has come. For all the effort developers put on graphics these sometimes I think they're forgetting that the main aim of games is for fun and enjoyment.

    I don't remember when I first played Pac-Man because it was a while ago but it doesn't really matter because as I said before it's a timeless experience. It wouldn't have mattered if I'd played it 10 years ago or today the gameplay would be as great as ever. If you haven't played the game (I don't see how this is possible) it's on every single platform known to man and has numerous flash versions so go now and play.

  • Not much to say about this except that it's one of the few fighters I actually played for a while. Before Tekken 3 the only other fighting games I'd really played were SF2, KOF and X-Men vs. SF but no 3D fighters (maybe a bit of Virtua Fighter) so the game was an exciting new concept for me.

    The other the reason I grew to the game was because of multiplayer, which is why most people keep playing fighting games. It was a game where me and my brothers and cousins would have our own little mini-competitions to see who was the best which led to many arguments and turning off of the PS1 by my parents.

  • Surprisingly this is the first Nintendo game to make it on to my list but it's definitely one of my favourites. Lylat Wars (as it was called in PAL territories and what I've always referred to it as) was one of several N64 that I played with my brothers and cousins in 4-player multiplayer. Even though you had tiny space on the screen to see your character (and TVs were much smaller then) you could still clearly tell what was happening and everyone just went into their own zone. We endlessly played the Battle Royale mode over all the others as we liked each other being killed off rather then winning by any other means.

    The single player was also great and not if only because of the voice acting. All the characters had voices that suited them perfectly (even if some were annoying) and all of them were delivered perfectly. I also wanted to get the highest medals in all the levels so I could unlock the extra multiplayer elements as, if you haven't realised, that was the biggest part of the game to me.

  • Everybody loves worms (or at least they should). It's a game that even if everything goes wrong and you make a catastrophic mistake you're still enjoying yourself, it's a game where any can learn how to play in a couple of minutes and it's a game where you're never quite sure what's going to happen next.

    I chose Armageddon because it was the Worm's game which I probably played the most but all of them (except the 3D ones) are just as fun and offer the same gameplay. The best aspect of the worms game is the variety of destructive weapons from the classic that is the Holy Hand Grenade to the just as classic Super Sheep, all the weapons cause massive damage and all the weapons can end up killing you by accident.

    I hadn't played a Worms game in a while so I downloaded Worms 2: Armageddon on XBLA and was re-hooked. As with several other games on this list local multiplayer is a big reason that I played the games. Worms was no different and it's great fun with a large group.

  • You know after two weeks I sometimes can't be asked to write two decent paragraphs on every game on this list, so I'm not going to. This game's quite fun and there's not much more to say.

  • Lionhead has a good history with management sims (as Bullfrog) but I was still quite surprised with the quality of The Movies. Part lot management games part machinima maker, The Movies puts you in charge of a movie studio and lets you loose to your own devices.

    The management part of the game is the best part and plays just how you want it to. You're constantly juggling the needs of your stars with the upkeep of you lot and if you can get it right you'll have the cash and kudos as a reward. The games biggest problem is the gap between the machinima making and the rest of the game. To create a a good movie your going to have to spend a lot of time tinkering around with the tools and that doesn't flow with the rest of the game. The tools they give you are great but again require hefty time investment if you want to actually do something decent with them.

    To me The Movies is one of those good games which people never seem to talk about. It came and went and many people never took notice when they really should have. If you ever get a chance you should check it out.

  • Everyone has to admit that they would love playing as a dictator. Having full control over your populace and controlling there every move is the best part of Tropico. Even though you can choose to play honourable elected politician that isn't the most fun route in this game.

    Tropico also had a vibrant Caribbean setting which wasn't used much in games, apart from those with pirates. The music also fit with the theme perfectly and added to the authentic Cuban feel. I'm looking forward to Tropico 3 as I never played the second game but I feel like getting into the series again.

  • Knytt is all about atmosphere. You play as a Knytt (a small humanoid creature) who has been abducted by aliens whose UFO subsequently crashes on an unknown planet. Know you must recover all the pieces of the ship so that you can return home. The game is a platformer and your only controls are running, jumping, climbing walls and shining a light which shows you your nearest item (similar to Shadow of the Colossus).

    The game is purposefully minimalist and it works really well. There is some ambient background music which works well and all the backgrounds are really beautiful as they create the mood for this strange planet. There are some other animals in the world but apart from them your basically alone in your quest to get back home. This adds to feeling of exploration, adventure and isolation as you're a little person who has big task accomplish.

    It doesn't matter if you just play for five minutes because the game is more about the experience then actually 'winning'.

  • Game #19 is Grow Cube but I've linked it to this page as flash games aren't allowed on the wiki.

    This is a game that I'm really not sure how to describe. In the centre you have a cube and on the sides you have different panels with objects in them. You click all the panels once and every time you do it affects the cub in some way. The most important thing is the order you use the objects in as there is only one correct solution. Confused? Just play the game.

    The best part about Grow Cube (or any of the Grow games for that matter) is that even if you select things in the wrong order you'll still get a unique result each time. It's experimenting with all the different combinations which really makes the game fun. Grow Cube is just one of the several Grow games which are all available on ON's website, eyezmaze.

  • A common theme with all the games today's blog is simplicity. That is Winterbells' greatest feature and why it's one of the best flash games I have ever played. Clcik once to make the rabbit jump and then move your mouse to make him hit the bells. The more bells he hits the higher his score get and peridically a bird will fly across the screen, hitting it will double your score. Simple.

    The thing that really drew me to the game is how polished and well designed it is. The music is soothing and the art style is elegant. It's just a very well made game. You might think that I'm a bit crazy to like such a small and simple game but that's what I love about it. I can come back to it at any time and instantly become engaged.

    This is just one of a number of great game from Ferry Halim who is an amazing flash game designer. His Orsinal site is full of little gaming gems such as A Dog For All Seasons, Sunny Day Sky and Cats, to name a few.

  • I never owned a GBA so when I got my DS I went back and played many games that I'd missed out on. Advance Wars was one of those games. I heard lots of people saying great things about it so I was eager to give it a try. For those who haven't played it AW is a turn-based strategy game in which you control an army.

    Strategy is definitely needed if you want to complete the game as a wrong move can cause you a lot of problem. What I really liked about the game was how vibrant and colourful everything was, it really makes the game more fun to play. While I never finished AW the story was also a part of the game I liked as it wasn't predictable, from as far as I'd played. I've been meaning to play the latest games in the series which came out for the DS but it's a game where you have to play for quite a while but the DS isn't the system which I spend a lot of time on.

  • He may be nothing compared to his original self these days but Sonic is still one of the most iconic gaming mascots of all time and it's all because of this game. Sonic the Hedgehog was 'edgier' and had more of an 'attitude' compared to Nintendo owned rival but most importantly he was in good platformers (until Sonic & Knuckles at least).

    The best part of Sonic is the speed and the ability to race through levels. It was handy that the levels themselves were well designed so that you could go fast. That's what made Sonic fun and it's so frustrating that we have to suffer through endless bad games in the series just because Sonic Team wants to try out crappy new ideas. I just can't understand why they don't stick to what makes Sonic what it is.

  • This is the granddaddy of all FPSs (well technically it's Wolfenstein 3D but this was better and more popular). A true classic DOOM had all the things that modern shooters have but before they became generic: It had a space marine as the main character, it had demons, it had big guns, it had multiplayer, it had mods and most importantly it was all in three-dimensions.

    DOOM isn't just great because of it's legacy. It's and FPS which hold up to this day, maybe not graphically (which still looks ok) but in terms of what actually matters - the gameplay. No wonder the game is still doing well on services such as XBLA, it just goes to show that if you focus on your game mechanics you can make a timeless product which will be fun more then a decade after its release.

  • Why does no one ever talk about this game? MDK is easily one of the most original third person shooters that I've ever played but it seems that nobody else has even heard about this game. Developed by Shiny (of Earthworm Jim fame) the game has you playing as Kurt Hectic, a humble janitor and a fan of Goulash who ends up in an absurd (but hilarious) story to save the world.

    Graphically MDK was nothing less then state-of-the-art at the time it was released and is one of the games that hasn't been affected by time. The game was mainly a third person shooter but it had tons of variety and several gameplay types throughout, the best of them being the stream riding sequences.

    I've said it many times before but you don't find original IPs that often these days so it's a breath of fresh air when something like MDK comes along. A game which truly breaks the mold and doesn't rely on game clichés or tired old gaming conventions. Games need to think for themselves and this is one that does.

  • Who would have thought, a funny first person-shooter! Well No One Lives Forever (NOLF) manages it with style. You play as secret agent Cate Archer who works for UNITY, an anti-terror organisation who aim to keep world peace. After a series of operative assassinations Cate is given the task of finding out what's going and her investigations lead to her to the conclusion that the aptly-named H.A.R.M organisation is behind it all. Now she must infiltrate and stop them before they take over the world. Don't worry, it's funnier then it sounds.

    NOLF perfectly combines the cool gadgets and stylishness of James Bond with the ridiculousness and absurdity of Austin Powers to make a unique experience. The game is set in the 1960s and all the locations fit this just perfectly. Gadgets are also used too with tools varying from a cigarette lighter/blow torch to a robotic poodle.

  • Far Cry was Crytek's first game and they probably couldn't ask for a better way to start their careers. Obviously the game is well known for it's graphics, which were way better then anything else at the time, (a trend Crytek continued with Crysis) but the actual FPS part was great too.

    The game wasn't your typical linear shooter and gave you an open island to play around with. You could choose to take your enemies head-on or in some cases bypass the completely. AI was also a feature that was the best of its time and your enemies could be pretty intelligent and brutal at times.

    While I've yet to play Far Cry 2 I can only hope it took the strong points of the original and improved upon them.

  • Now this is not a serious game (no pun intended). Serious Sam is just about blowing enemies away with your vast amounts of weapons. Enormous levels, tons (and that really means tons) of enemies and huge (again that really means huge, just look at this) bosses. It's just a blast to play and that is why everybody should play it before they die.

  • When Braid fist came out and everybody was giving it rave reviews and saying how it proves gaming is an art form I was bit skeptical. Even Ryan's 5 star review didn't have me fully convinced and I still thought that Braid looked too pretentious. A year later the game was released on PC and I thought it was time to see if people were overhyping something that actually wasn't that great. Now I'm ready to admit that I was wrong in doubting all those people. Mostly.

    Braid is truly a special game. It doesn't force itself to be something it's not to appeal to a mass audience and it's a game which is telling the story, what the story actually is about is left to the interpretation of the player. What elevates Braid from other games with great stories is that the gameplay is intrinsically tied to the plot and that is something which isn't seen much.

    People go on about Braid as the 'art' game (along with the two other most commonly refereed to 'art' games: Shadow of the Colossus and BioShock) but to me it doesn't really matter. That's because it's just an amazing experience which weaves story with gameplay so seamlessly and is still a great puzzle game.

  • Controversial? Not really. Too soon? Not soon enough. Left 4 Dead may be less then a year old and getting a sequel in a few months but it has already become one of my all time favourite games. It's games based on zombies (infected if you want to be accurate), which everybody loves and it's in co-op, the most fun way to play a game.

    L4D is just the perfect co-op game. Each character is instantly recognisable and so are all of the boss infected with there individual groans and screeches. The levels may not be very long but with AI director you get different experience. Even now I still get surprised at what's thrown at me as it never happened before.

    I'm also excited for Left 4 Dead 2. It may be a year since the original's release but it looks like Valve are adding a substantial amount of new content and completely relocating the game, which sounds great to me.

  • BioWare know there RPGs and they know how to make a good story to, as seen in KOTOR. So it's no surprise that Mass Effect is one of, if not the, best RPGs fo this generation. It has all the BioWare staples from player choice to an engaging story and very fleshed out world (seriously, I gave up on the codex and reading all the planet descriptions but it's nice that it's there).

    I'm always attracted to a game with a good story so ME was game that immediately drew me in so when I got my 360 it was one the first games I picked up. As in other BioWare game you get choices over your actions but this time they have a much more direct impact over your story and the character involved. That's my favourite part of ME, seeing how your actions effect the course of your adventure.

    Another big reason that I picked up ME was the fact that your story would carry over to Mass Effect 2. I haven't seen many games do this so I really hope that this turns out to be something substantial and not just that my character model is the same. I'm currently on my second playthrough and the recent signs of new dlc is good for me as I'm trying to reach level 60 and a lot of side missions can get repetitive (I've got Bring Down the Sky and even that just feels like a longer version of an ordinary side mission) so this will help me on my way.

  • What's there to say. You've all probably played this game already because it sold over 13 million copies and it's a brilliant FPS. While the other Call of Duties were fun COD4 took the series to bigger and better places by having a fast paced story and engaging multiplayer mode.

    I only really played the single player part of the game because the multiplayer aspect was not the kind I like, not to say that it's bad because it's use of levelling up and perks are cool features. The single player itself was enough to satisfy me. It's so relentlessly fast paced and before you know it your in another country playing a different character but still have a hell of a lot of fun. The variation in levels is also perfect. While you have most of the normal run and gun section there's also the memorable guile suite level and the just as memorable bomber section.

    While I still prefer FPSs like Half-Life to the COD series it's still an amazing game and I can't complain when other games are using it as a mold because I'd rather they copy COD4 then some other crappy game.

  • Broken Sword is undoubtedly an adventure gaming masterpiece. It has the most important ingredients for any good adventure game: engaging story and smart puzzles but on top of that it adds superb voice acting and great hand drawn graphics.

    You play as likeable American tourist George Stobbart who is having a holiday in Paris. Unfortunately for him his little excursion is interrupted by a bomb attack in a café he was in. This starts Georges journey to find out what happened which leads him through several countries to uncover a deeper secret behind this whole mystery.

    What makes Broken Sword better then many other adventure games is that everything is so believable. George seems like a typical American caught up in something much bigger then him and Nico is a Parisian journalist just trying to make ends meet. There adventure is intriguing from the start and you'll want to know what's going on and how things will end, and trust me you'll be satisfied with the end.

  • Another classic. All the good points from above apply to here as well so there isn't much more to say. Voice acting is again great (though Tim Curry's New Orleans accent is a bit over-the-top) and again the settings are all well realised.

  • Being a Tim Schafer game Full Throttle automatically becomes good but the game itself is another reason why he is such a highly regarded developer. Full Throttle is more mature then most other LucasArts' adventure games but it still retain a lot of their (or in this case Tim Schafer and Dave Grossman's) trademark humour.

    You play as Ben, the leader of biker gang in a world which is moving towards hovercrafts. The story would be absurd in most other contexts but suits the game perfectly as your quest to clear your gang's name and stop the last motorbike producing company turning into a minivan manufacturer is both hilarious and captivating.

  • Beneath a Steel Sky was created by Revolution Software (the creators of the Broken Sword series) so right away you knew you were going to get a great game. The game really goes a great job of making you understand what Robert Foster (the main character) feels as the opening sequence, which is done as a comic book and drawn by Dave Gibbons (of Watchmen fame), is immediately gripping.

    The cyberpunk dystopian future is a very well created world and the game's dialogue also matches the mood to great effect. The best new is that the game can be downloaded for free off Good Old Games so you can't argue with that price.

  • The game that really started everything. Pong was the first commercially successful videogame and it paved the way for today's multi-billion dollar industry.

  • Probably the most cloned game of all time. Even as recently as last month PSN received the game Shatter, which is basically breakout for the HD generation.

  • You can't argue with the popularity of a game which has sold in excess of 70 million copies. So I'm not going to.

  • When there's an episode of Seinfeld based around your game you know it's firmly part of popular culture.

  • Look out for the Asteroids movie which announced this year. It's being produced by Lorenzo di Bonaventura (who worked on Transformers and G.I. Joe films) so you know it's going to be something special.

  • It's hard to judge classic game by their greatness because they're all great. Instead, as you may have notice, I prefer to judge them by their mark on pop culture and Space Invaders has made a humorous impression.

  • This is the DS version as, for some reason, I can't link to the original.

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    One of the first and most fun multiplayer games (not this version but it layed down the gameplay mechanics) around. These days it's still a popular franchise with XBLA version recently selling over 500,000.

  • The game in today's blog of which I have the fondest memories. I just loved the level design and challenging yet rewarding gameplay.

  • This is how you do a sequel. A true successor to The Secret of Monkey Island and one that expanded the game's story and improved the gameplay. MI2 continues the adventure of hapless (but lovable) pirate Guybrush Threepwood who is searching for the elusive 'Big Whoop'. The game just continues to have witty dialogue and clever puzzles and it cemented Monkey Island's place in adventure gaming history.

  • I'll probably get a lot of flak for picking this game but I don't mind. It's no way near the quality of it the original Deus Ex (one of my favourite games of all time) but I still found it to be fun in it's own right. Being the sequel to such a game didn't do it any help but standing on it's own merits it's still a decent FPS/RPG hybrid. I've still got high hopes that Deus Ex 3 can turn things around and bring the series back to its former glory but we'll have to wait and see.

  • Never played the original but it's a game where you don't need to get the full experience. Another FPS/RPG hybrid (a genre that I very much enjoy and am glad to see get a resurgence with Borderlands) and another game with great dialogue. Set aboard the Von Braun you play as a soldier who wakes up with amnesia on ship that has been infected by an alien species. It's a story done many time before but SS2 was one of the first and one of the most well executed.

  • I don't understand why I like this game. I'm no good at it and I'm not going to get any better but I still seem to enjoy it. Maybe because it just feels so over the top at time when you've got all the characters on the screen at once. Maybe it's because I like having so much choice in character selection and being able to choose my favourite Marvel characters. I don't know but I still like putting on the game every now and then and giving my brother or cousin a quick match.

  • A lot of people seem to dislike KOTOR 2 and I can understand that from a technical standpoint. The game had many bugs (I didn't experience many myself) and partly incomplete (which is no fault of Obsidian who were rushed into releasing the game by LucasArts) but the story it tells is grander and deeper then KOTOR and for that I commend it. The same combat gameplay from the original is intact and a lot of other elements from the original are there too.

    The story of The Sith Lords was what really made it stand out to me as it focused more on the grey side of the Force. Kreia is neither a Sith or a Jedi but somewhere in between and that's something you don't see much explored in the games. Regardless of the technical problems I still had a lot of fun playing KOTOR 2 and it makes me excited to see what BioWare are going to do with The Old Republic.

  • The game that firmly positioned Infinity Ward as one of the best FPS developers around. People were getting tired with WWII shooters but COD2 reinvigorated their Nazi killing spirit with a fast firefights and great controls.

  • While the Max Payne game feel a tad melodramatic at times, it's solved by the cool thrid-person shootouts where you're just ploughing through guys and still keeping that face that only Max can have. The addition of Mona in the game was nice but Max is what everyone plays the game for. I'm eager to see more of Max Payne 3 because I'm a bit wary of the new direction the game is taking.

  • I seem to have a lot of potentially controversial games on my list today and MGS2 is right up there. It's the game that elevated expectations of playing as Snake in a new generation of consoles but crushed them in sweeping blow by introducing Raiden. The plot is a typical Kojima affair with many convoluted twists and turns throughout, and it leaves you quite confused by the end. Forgetting all that MGS2 is still a Metal Gear Solid game and it still has the gameplay that we've all come to love (or hate). That's the game's saving grace in my eyes as, compared to the other entries in the series (excluding MGS4 which I've yet to play) , the game falls a little flat.

  • I should have put this in my last blog with the other sequels but I forgot. I was happily reminded of the game while watching the Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2 QL so I thought I'd just include it here.

  • The game that popularised the phrase 'open world'. GTA III was bigger then almost all other games I'd played and it was in 3D and it looked good. It's a shame that so many games feel like they have to copy it just for the sake of a bullet point on the back of the box.

  • Sid Meier knows how to make a good strategy game.

  • I like big and open RPGs. Morrowind is one of them.

  • The third game in the franchise brought Duke into the third dimension and with it all the alien killing action of it's predecessors. It kind of makes me sad that we'll never get to see DNF but I guess games have moved on and Duke hasn't.

  • I usually hate racing sims but GT3 was able to keep me playing. Maybe it's just because everyone else was playing it that I gave it shot and it was actually more fun then I'd expected.

  • I've always loved the Hitman franchise. There's just something really satisfying about committing the perfect assassination and not alerting anybody. Also if you get caught it's just as fun to blast your way through (although it's probably harder).

  • Remember when Warcraft was most famous for being a strategy game? Ahh, those were the days.

  • A lot of stealth games seem to have really good threequels and Splinter Cell in no exception. Chaos Theory is the best game in the series for me and really refined the mechanics of the previous and had great levels too.