Top Ten of Twenty Twelve

Although It's been a good year for games it was hard to shake off the feeling of tiredness with the current consoles. However the games this year that managed to get me excited again proved themselves to be some of the best not only this year but of all time.

Great games that didn't make the list and why:

Hotline Miami

While the soundtrack is fucking amazing the game itself didn't grip me enough to keep me coming back. It's quite telling that I have probably spent upwards of 50 hours listening to that soundtrack while less than 10 actually playing the game.

Binary Domain

It was a tough choice to cut this from the ten because I enjoyed it so much. For me it achieved the same feelings that I get from watching films like The Rock or Con Air. I expected it to be an average disposable shooter yet it ended up sticking with me much more than I anticipated.

Borderlands 2

I loved this game, but only for as long as it kept my attention. The writing was brilliant but in the end looting guns won't keep me coming back and so I didn't even finish the game. I did buy the season pass too yet I haven't even touched any of that DLC. I will one day but not today.

List items

  • I'm a sucker for a good story. For me a good story in a game will always beat the game that has better gameplay. No game has even come close to what the Walking Dead achieves in how it makes you feel about characters.

    The way it handles your decisions was proof that you can give players choice (or at least an illusion of choice) and still manage to tell a singular, focused story. In a year when Mass Effect damaged players trust in choice this was needed to restore that faith.

    While the gameplay was minimal it was only their to serve Telltales goal of creating a fantastic character driven narrative and it did.

    This is the first time I could feel confident in saying that storytelling in games has finally begun to reach the same heights of other mediums.

    This is truly a momentous occasion for gaming in my opinion.

  • I know this might not be a valid choice for PC players but for console players like me the Witcher is a 2012 release, therefore It's on my list.

    Fantasy is a hard thing to get right in my opinion. It's something I found myself growing out of in the past years. Tolkien and C.S Lewis were the biggest out there and their tame views of black and white allegiances did nothing to interest me.

    However The Witcher dragged me into it's fascinating world of grey. There are no good guys in The Witcher even Geralt himself isn't a saint.

    Add a great and tough combat system to the story and you have a fantastic game.

    However, throughout my entire playthough all I could think about is what if this developer made the Game of Thrones game? A guy can dream.

  • This game is a weird experience. The first couple of hours show nothing but a generic shooter in the really cool location of buried Dubai. Yet stick with it and you get one of the most interesting game stories of the generation.

    The themes it deals with are very interesting especially in our world of FPS games being best sellers.

    It's not afraid to take a swing at games like that at what their stories portray and it's makes the game on of my favourites of the year.

    It's legacy though will be its unique, subtle character evolution which will surely be introduced by the next generation of consoles if not before.

  • Never have I become so addicted to a game since the first couple of Pokemon games. It perfects the "one more try" effect that Super Meat Boy had while having fantastic controls and an awesome sense of humour.

    The community however doubles the value of this game, you only need to watch a couple of Roosterteeth's Trials Files videos to realise that something special was created here.

  • This feels like what I'd imagine playing a game of a painting would be like. It's smooth to play, It looks beautiful, and makes you feel emotions most other games couldn't hope to achieve.

  • I'm not one for strategy games but FTL is both extremely easy to pick up and deceptively hard to complete. My personal playstyle is to pause the game every 5 seconds yet each battle still manages to feel intense and exciting even with the game paused.

    The sound track is just as amazing as well with it's mellow space tunes and intense battle music. For the price you'd be hard pressed to find any game as good as this.

  • While a lot of things about the epic trilogy's ending the small more enclosed moments drag this back into my top ten. Mordin's death especially had such a big impact on me. Not only was he my favourite character but his death was near perfect.

    That was one of many moments that more than makeup for the games downfalls.

  • I'm not a guy who plays much multiplayer but after playing the demo of this I was hooked.

    The feel of running round these maps, launch up into the air only to dive bomb onto some suckers head and ambush a bunch of enemies is a feeling very unique to modern multiplayer games I've played.

    If the community on PSN was stronger I'd still be playing this game now and it'd be higher on the list.

  • This was easily some of the most fun I had with a AAA title this year. With precise and easy controls that let you do fucking insane things around the Island it was incredible for the 10-15 hours I played it for.

    However the story lets the game down greatly. While it has great characters in Vaas, Dennis, and Sam, it never utilises them to their full potential and the interactions you have with them are too few.

  • I wasn't expecting much from this dark horse but it's mixture of Batman combat with a superbly acted story definitely left it's impression on me.