GOTY 2013

Okay, here we goooo.

List items

  • Quality and content are mind-blowing. The size and scope of this game is just incredible... But the story struggles to pay off, the characters descend into unlikability as they start to hate each other, and there seem to be so many ideas that only barely get touched before getting dropped... but usually out of necessity.

    The graphics are beautiful and everything feels so life-like. I once spent a good 30 minutes simply walking (not even running) as Franklin through Los Santos from the projects all the way to the beach.

    Now, I just want to have a good PC port for a solid framerate and a resolution where I can't count every god damn pixel on the screen.

    Oh, and the gunplay is disappointingly average after the magic that was both Red Dead Redemption and the 3rd person PERFECTION of Max Payne 3.

  • More of Battlefield. Feels like Battlefield with a small tinge of Bad Company 2 in some ways. Good balance changes since the start nothing really ever jumped out as being annoyingly overpowered and nothing really felt totally useless (except for maybe revolvers).

    It runs better, looks better as a whole, and feels great when it's work alright... but I must say that the multiplayer levels aren't the best they've had. They're not all stinkers, but the only ones I'm ever glad to see brought up are probably Hainan Resort and ... umm... maybe Zavod 311 or Flood Zone? Lancang Dam sucks, Dawnbreaker is forgettable, Siege of Shanghai is average, Paracel Storm can be fun, Rogue Transmission is like 2 good ideas plus 4 bad ones, Operation Locker is awesome if you're winning and torture if you're losing, Golmud Railroad can be okay... sometimes.

  • As my co-worked Joel put it: "Fuck humanity, acquire bitches."

    That was how I felt about the ending. Where there was a moment where I, as a person, felt like a mortal sacrifice for the fate of humanity was the most noble prospect a single human being could undertake, was directed to play like a complete monster, murdering the frayed but well-intentioned people who wanted to help save humanity.

    Like GTAV it pushed what was thought to be possible with last gen hardware (minus a couple thousand pixels) and really brought together an impressive story and gameplay package.

  • The Splinter Cell I loved is back. Gone are the dumb TV-show twists and backstabs of Double Agent and Conviction and back to the no-bullshit "kill these mother fuckers, they're bad" mentality of the original three.

    It's fast paced in all the right ways, but still demanding of strategy (and enabling it) in a better flowing way than we ever found even in the excellence of Chaos Theory.

    Black suit, green goggles, mother fucker can rock on.

    Oh, and I honestly don't miss Ironside's voice. Lambert, though. Lambert + Grim was Splinter Cell's Halo 1 Cortana. The person in your ear that just sounds "right".

  • It's hockey. And it's pretty alright hockey. It's really impressive how convincing the game can look at times with the dynamics of the puck's physics, the goalies' animations, and the gliding on the ice. Save for the part where every other check would be a career-ender in real life, it's a pretty realistic and exhilarating sports game.

  • It's got fucking pirates and fucking Assassins. It's the closest you'll get to Pirates vs Ninjas without revealing that you're some 14 year old boy who thinks that concept "it's totally fucking tight".

  • The deeper and more complex side of Civilization and Total War's campaign map, once you see a few tutorial videos and cut your teeth with a powerful nation such as Spain, France, or England, you'll get sucked in just like those two games. If Civ is for high schoolers and Total War is for college students, then EUIV is for graduates.

  • Probably the most violent game I've ever played. And I've played Manhunt and Soldier of Fortune II, to name a few particularly gruesome games. It's amazing how many times you're able to go from one scene murdering dozens of police officers to then walking around a county fair with a combination of Belle from Beauty and the Beast and Rapunzel from Tangled.

  • I just wish more people would be around to play this. One-on-one with my brother is okay, but I really feel like I need 3 or 4 to really get the chaotic feeling running through me.

  • Almost forgot about this game. Making this list makes me realize how often I find the 2013 limitation to be a little annoying since I'm not the type to buy and play stuff just because it's new, so a lot of my more memorable games would be a bit older...

    Anyway, Tomb Raider. Basically what Indiana Jones would look like when combined with Battle Royale (no, not Hunger Games). But makes you think, 'Chirst, Lara Croft would win both a Battle Royale and a Hunger Games pretty fucking single handedly'. Like Bioshock Infinite, when you put a serious story, realistic faces and a believable world in a game and play it as one you start to realize how many lives are being extinguished in a span of 6-8 hours.

    Also, even though Lara survives, the number of blood-borne illnesses and infections she'd suffer from would most certainly kill her after leaving the island.