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GOTY 2011

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  • There isn't game I had as much anticipation for as Portal 2. The original Portal came out of nowhere and instantly knocked me over but as soon I'd finished it I wanted more. Portal 2 was all I could ask for in a game. Gameplay, story, music and level design all gelled together perfectly and I have no reservations in saying that Portal 2 is in my top 10 games of all time. Oh yeah, the coop is pretty awesome too.

  • I haven't finished the main quest line in Skyrim. I haven't finished the Thieves Guild, or the Mage's College, or the Companions or any of the other major quests and yet I've managed to put in over 60 hours into the game. That is a testament to the breadth of content that Bethesda have managed cram in.<br><br>

    The most fun I've had in the game is creating my own story for me and my faithful companion, Sven. Sven is bard who you meet near the beginning of the game. He's not a good fighter and there are many better companions along the way but that doesn't matter because I've made my own fiction and that's what wonderful about Skyrim, it's <b>your</b> adventure. There's no wrong way to play and the game accommodates whatever path you take. With large, open-world RPGs fewer and farther between, Skyrim is a game that holds the genre up by itself and sets a new benchmark for other developers.

  • Even after following the development of Bastion on Giant Bomb, I was still uncertain on how it would turn out. What the game turned out to be was a beautifully woven story told by a pitch-perfect narrator mixed with snappy combat and a soundtrack which stays in your head long after you've completed it.<br><br>

    The team at Supergiant Games have come out of the gates in the strongest way possible. They've shown that downloadable games don't always have to be about getting the high score or finishing a level quickest. Sometimes they can be about a narrative that makes you think and contemplate things which are deeper than face value all without sacrificing gameplay. For that reason Bastion is my top downloadable game of 2011.

  • Horde mode. That is the reason Gear of War 3 is so far up my list. The first mode I started, when playing the game for the first time, was Horde and it's the mode I've put most time into since. GoW 2's Horde mode was already my favourite part of that game so the few additional tweaks added to Horde 2.0 were more than enough to get me hooked again. The new tower defence aspect were a brilliant addition. They brought in an added layer of complexity on how to approach each round and, if you were a team that knew what they were doing, you could lay waste to all Locust and Lambent in your way. The new boss waves make reaching round 50 even more satisfying than before as overcoming the most difficult enemies in the game give you a great sense of accomplishment.