GOTY 2012 - Revisited
REVISITED on 04 Dec 14 - This was easily the GOTY list that saw the most changes, as I had a massive pile of shame including Far Cry 3, X-Com, and The Walking Dead among others. As a result, the last couple of cuts were extremely difficult to get to the final 10 (it took several revisions, including a long period of time of having a tie at #10,
10000000 - This game was a fixture on this list through all revisions (originally at 8th or so, then down to a 10th place tie, before being removed) - a great mashup of genres resulting in highly addictive gameplay. I just could not stop until I got that next upgrade, until I went a little bit further. My wife doesn't play many games, and this one had her absolutely hooked. That's saying something in my book. That 'ending' though..was ultimately what lead me to cut it from the top 10. The payoff for all the grinding is a (SPOILER ALERT) MS paint bmp of the hero looking out to the horizon. It certainly adds to the charm of the game, but it stands in stark contrast to the deep gameplay and fun music. Give us something, anything more.
Mass Effect 3 - (originally at #6, then tied for 10th, before finally being kicked from the lit). Speaking of endings...As I look back on these GOTY lists, one of the key points I'm considering as I reevaluate the positioning of games, is how they have stuck with me. By that very nature, poor endings will heavily influence my thoughts. It's not news that the ending of this game was downright awful. Years of choices and character building boiled down to three colors. Bioware has tried to right the ship, but unfortunately did so by charging people for some of the DLC. However, these issues did provide a benefit: sparking a ton of conversation about the game, including the well put-together indoctrination theory. Overall, the game itself was great, though just missing some of the life that ME2 had. It just stands in a class with Halo 2 and Rage when it comes to most disappointing endings ever.
Sleeping Dogs - I would not have gotten this game if it hadn't been a free download as part of Games with Gold. And even then, I probably would not have actually played it much if it hadn't received such glowing endorsement from the staff's GOTY deliberations. Boy, I'm glad I did. My misconception of it being just a GTA clone were wrong. Very fun story, great combat system. Highly recommended.
Puzzlejuice - Asher Volmer's first puzzle hit. What a fun, addictive game. I love Threes even more and can not wait for Close Castles.
Hotline Miami - Very fun game with a crazy story and incredible soundtrack. Similarly to Counterstrike, I just don't think it made the cut as I find myself thinking more about the soundtrack, than the game itself. I think it was overhyped a bit, but it is still an excellent game.
Soul Calibur V - (Cut from the original list) I enjoyed the flash of this game (who doesn't want to play as Ezio in a fighting game? When you execute his super he even says Requiescat in Pace...sold), and the online features were solid, but at the end of the day, it had no staying power with me. I tend to revisit fighting games a lot, but after about a month, I did not return to SCV.
Trials Evolution - (Cut from the original list) I enjoyed Trials quite a bit, but with the other heavy hitters on the list, it just didn't make the cut. At some point, my trials skills were not enough, and there was something very disappointing staring at things I would never finish!
Counter Strike GO - (Cut from the original list) Great shooter with an unquestionable pedigree, but the game as a whole was just not deep enough to stay with me. This is in large part to me playing it on console, I get that, but I just do not have the desire to get back into PC gaming. As a Valve fan, I did want to mention it here.