mardi 26 mars 2013

Bara_Chat' 2012 Game of the Year awards

So it's been a very busy three months for me, with Christmas, work (hundreds of exams to prepare and correct), having many cats at home as my wife has a cat shelter thing going on, etc. Anyway, I had to do a Game of the Year entry sooner or later, so here goes!

Most impressive graphics (artistic AND/OR technical)
Instead of having two "graphics" categories, I'll have just one for the most impressive graphics. Now this is a very subjective assessment of a game's graphical achievements, because I'm not a huge "Best graphics" gamer like some people who won't play a game if it's not good looking (cannot for the life of me figure out how that thinking works). But sometimes you have to give credit where it's due.
  • Journey (PS3)
  • Far Cry 3 (PS3) - WINNER!
  • Forza Horizon (X360)
  • Dishonored (PS3)
  • Okami HD (PSN)
Far Cry 3's beautifully detailed island was a joy to behold during all 20+ hours of gameplay. There's not much else to say, really.

Best story/writing
  • Dishonored (PS3)
  • Mass Effect 3 (PS3)
  • The Walking Dead (PSN) - WINNER!
  • Max Payne 3 (PS3)
  • Diablo III (PC/Mac)
I think this was the easiest award for 2012. At first I considered Mass Effect 3 as a contender, but the more I played The Walking Dead, the more it appeared to me that this game is a serious contender for the best writing in a video game since, well, forever. It's just that epic.

Most memorable gaming moment (MAJOR SPOILERS!! MAJOR SPOILERS!!)
  • Bloodwing getting killed by Handsome Jack - Borderlands 2 - WINNER!
  • Loyalists betray Corvo - Dishonored
  • Burning weed crops mission - Far Cry 3
  • Squad-synchronized quadruple headshot - Ghost Recon : Future Soldier
  • Collapsing on the snow mountain - Journey
  • Deckard Cain dies - Diablo III
  • Ending - The Walking Dead
In the first Borderlands, I played almost exclusively with Mordecai, completing the game twice with that same character. Obviously, I got used to using Bloodwing a lot and kinda got attached to it as it was so freaking useful.

Best sound design (including voice acting)
  • The Walking Dead (PSN)
  • Mass Effect 3 (PS3)
  • Borderlands 2 (PS3)
  • Dishonored (PS3)
  • Sound Shapes (PSVita) - WINNER !
You know a game will have epic sound design when the word "sound" is actually part of the name. Sound Shapes would look a peculiar platforming game to most gamers, but it's actually a lot more than that. The harmony between the levels and the music behind it is pitch perfect (pun galore!) and the level creation tool is epic.

Best game I haven't tried yet (According to
  • Persona 4 Golden (PSVita) - 93.94%
  • Xenoblades Chronicles (Wii) - 91.78%
  • Trials Evolution HD (XBLA) - 91.58%
  • Mark of The Ninja (XBLA) - 90.44%
  • Guild Wars 2 (PC) - 90.26%
  • Fez (XBLA) - 89.41%
  • XCOM : Enemy unknown (Multi) - 89.22% for PC - WINNER!
  • Pinball FX2 : Marvel Pinball - Avengers Chronicles - 88.80%
  • LittleBigPlanet PS Vita (VITA) - 88.65%
  • Torchlight II (PC) - 88.55%
Logically, the game with the highest score would win this category. But I'm not always a logical man. So I took the 10 highest scoring games on that I hadn't played in 2012, and chose the one which I would like to try the most. I was both surprised and happy to see that "big-budget" games like Black Ops II and Assassin's Creed III weren't there.

Anyway, I almost bought XCOM last week. I was very intrigued when the clerk let me try it in the store and explained a bit how it played. I have to say that I'd like to try Torchlight II and Guild Wars 2 if I had a gaming PC and that I loved the first Trials HD on XBLA.

Most surprisingly good game
  • The Walking Dead (PSN) - WINNER!
  • Kingdom of Amalur : Reckoning (PS3)
  • Mutants Blobs Attack (VITA)
  • Gotham City Impostors (PSN)
I've never watched the famous TV show The Walking Dead, although I know, surfing the Internet as much as I do, that it's insanely popular with young adults and gamers alike. I don't know what the story actually is or whatever goes on in that show except that it's about zombies or "walking deads". But I heard many great things about the game from critics, it even won a few GoTY awards here and there, even if didn't even know what type of game it was. I tried the first episode, which was free via PS+, and I was hooked instantly, finishing it in basically one sitting (I stopped to eat at one point). I have yet to try the other episodes, but I'm sure they're as good as the first.
Most disappointing game
  • SSX (PS3) - WINNER! (or LOSER!)
  • Resistance : Burning Skies (VITA)
  • Uncharted : Golden Abyss (VITA)
  • Resident Evil 6 (PS3)
  • BONUS!! Far Cry 3's cooperative mode (PS3)
I was hyped for SSX months before it was released last winter. Except for a bit of Amped on the original Xbox at my friend's, I hadn't really played a snowboarding game since 1080 on the N64. At first I was happy they wanted to make a more grisly and realistic game (The whole Deadly Descents thing), then was a bit sad they came back to over-the-top action. Nonetheless, I bought it and thought it was pretty entertaining for the first few hours. Then it got extremely annoying, especially with those freaking bottomless pits you often can't see until you are actually falling inside of them. The game does offer you a rewind feature (in most descents types) to help you finish the ride, but in a conventional race you lose so much time the other guys/gals have taken an insurmountable lead. Not only that, but in a tricks battle the points you lose actually add up in your combo and can make you lose HUGE amounts of points. For example, say you're currently on a 13x2450 points run and you fall into a pit, use rewind, which costs 6500 or something, and now you're on 13x-4050, basically minus 50k points or so. Seriously? And since those bottomless pits are everywhere and often impossible to predict, it ruins the experience completely.

Game of The Year 2012

  • Mass Effect 3 (PS3)
  • Journey (PSN)
  • Borderlands 2 (PS3)
  • Dishonored (PS3)
  • The Walking Dead (PSN) - WINNER!
Until I played The Walking Dead in the past few weeks, this was going to be a tough battle between Dishonored and Journey. But the I completed the five episodes of The Walking Dead, not really knowing what to expect of this game (Though I have to admit I was influenced by GamesRadar's GoTY nod to actually try it). It really is a fantastic game with probably the most gripping storyline and most endearing characters since... I don't even know. It's now right up there with Bioshock, Fallout 3 and Super Mario Galaxy as the best games of this seventh-generation. I can't wait for a second season, I NEED to find out what happens to Clementine.

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