The one thing you should know about me is when I play a game, I play that game solely on my own. Now, this year has been absolutely insane for good games, so it saddens me that I didn’t have time to play all the ones I wanted to. But here is a list of the ones I did get to play and enjoyed the most.
5. Rayman Origins
I fell in love with this as soon as I played the demo. The colours are gorgeous, the style is brilliant and best of all its fun to play. Whether there’s one of you or four of you, it will have you smiling. This has been a year of serious gaming and it’s nice to have something more light-hearted in the midst of it all. This game is a gem.
So much work has gone into this game and it shows. The enormity of the map is incredible, as is the detail of every single inch of it. I’m still in awe every time I find something new; each thing is a little wonder. Despite there being a good story line, I don’t feel that I am bound to it at all because there is so much more I can do; I am quite content just roaming around killing things as I go, covering as much terrain as I can. I doubt I will ever master this game, but I don’t care, I love Skyrim for its beauty alone.
3. Portal 2
It took me a while to get into Portal, but I’m glad I got there. After playing both 1 & 2, I can finally get in on the inside jokes with my younger sister (combustible lemons anyone?) and I finally get what all the fuss is about. I’m not normally one for puzzle games, but Portal just makes it so enjoyable and rewarding. The storyline is absorbing, it’s got a brilliant sense of humour and the game play is great (even the co-op is done well). Plus I feel more empathy for GLaDOS than I do a lot of characters that have come out over recent years… even if she does think I’m a horrible person.
2. L.A. Noire
Now I know L.A. Noire definitely wasn’t perfect; the storyline was a little bit patchy, there were quite a few glitches and bugs, Cole Phelps was a douche bag… but that didn’t stop me from being totally immersed in the game. All it took was the music to draw me into the seedy underbelly of Hollywoodland. I felt the thrill of chasing down criminals, the satisfaction of finding key pieces of evidence, and an abhorrence to the human behaviour often shown (necrophilia, paedophilia, and some other philia’s I’m sure). L.A. Noire is the first game to use motion face capture technology, and it really does pay off. To know all the facial expressions you see are genuine is just amazing, it breathes so much life into every character. Hopefully this is the direction the next generation of games will take.
As soon as I was plonked into my world, there was a flurry of panic as I realised I didn’t know any of the controls, and there was no tutorial to help me (thank you sweet lord for minecraftwiki). This only added to the excitement of an undiscovered world that belongs entirely to me (and some monsters come night time). I love the fact that I can build whatever I want wherever I want; I can dig to the core of the earth and even visit the Netherworld if it suits me. This is a game without limits and for that I love it. The simple 16-bit colours and blocks are worlds away from the other games in this list and yet I adore the simplicity of it. For addictiveness alone, Minecraft is my number one.