Welcome back everyone! I hope your holidays were filled with hearty feasts and tons of back-slapping. Me? Oh my back is very sore. Hey who wants do a list?!
So there I sat on New Years Day toying around with the idea of throwing together a "ZOMG I'M AWESOME!" post, but I decided on something a little more constructive--a complete list of all the video games I completed in 2010. I mean, it should have the same affect right?
Now to be clear, this list is comprised of games I completed to their fullest extent. I'm talking rolling credits here folks. As an added bonus I've also included a brief one-sentence review for each title. Before we begin I must let you know that I'm an avid Left 4 Dead 2 player (as in I've put in over 350 hours in 2010). I also returned to World of Warcraft in December thanks to the release of Cataclysm, so now my life is especially pathetic.
Oh well, let's get the show on the road yo...
Alan Wake - A unique thriller with some pretty unnerving moments, excellently paced, and combat that can run a bit long in the tooth towards the end.
Alan Wake: The Signal - A short but interesting experience for the fans of the series.
Alan Wake: The Writer - More interesting and revealing than The Signal, built for fans of the narrative.
Assassin's Creed 2 (x1 PC, x1 Xbox 360) - Though the economy is essentially broken I found this game to be a total blast, but at times for me the challenge lied in the controls and not the enemies.
Assassin's Creed Brotherhood - I really enjoyed this game quite a bit. It's even more refined and has more goodies to chase than it's predecessor. It also allows you to control a brotherhood of assassin's--what's not to love? (Oops! Just broke my one-sentence rule. Oh heck let's do one more for fun!) Blah blah blah.
Bioshock 2 (x1 PC, x1 Xbox 360)- It was impossible for this game to live up to expectations, but if you just sit back and accept the game for what it's trying to do then you'll find a solid game here with combat mechanics that rivals the original.
Blur - Good fun for roughly 75% of the game. It's suppose to be some kind of modern or adult version of Mario Kart but it ran out of steam towards the end.
Civilization 5 - Binary crack. Next?
Crackdown 2 - Uuuugh! The first Crackdown is one of my favorite games of this generation, so I really wanted to love this game. Surprisingly it's less entertaining (how is this even possible Microsoft?) and almost became a chore to complete.
Dante's Inferno - Pulsating vagina's and babies oozing out of breasts, and that's just the third level. It didn't do enough gameplay-wise to make me even enjoy it.
Darksiders - Once I got past the banality of the first hour, I actually learned to appreciate Darksiders quite a bit.
Dead Nation - A fun, isometric coop zombie shooter where shit blows up real good!
Dead Rising 2 - I enjoyed this sequel much more than the first but it's wonky controls still annoyed me.
Deathspank - A strange and amusingly written game that's inspired by MMO mechanics. Unfortunately the whole thing got a little stale despite it all.
Dragon Age: Origins (x1 PC/x1 Console) - It seems to borrow a bit too much from the Lord of the Rings in both the narrative and aesthetic sense, but I loved the gameplay--video games!
Dragon Age: Awakenings - Weird, fun and with lots of foggy scenes and slimy, spiked things to fight.
Enslaved: Odyssey to the West - A peculiar game with stunningly well made cutscenes, outstanding voiceover work and visuals that seem to remind us that browns aren't the only colors fit for video games. However the gameplay mechanics need a bit more variety.
Fable 3 (x2) - Though I've played through this game twice and found it to be fairly fun I was still highly annoyed by some of the obtuse design decisions. Plus this game has possibly the worst map system ever created in a video game ever.
Fallout: New Vegas - With some big shoes to fill, I found FNV to be surprisingly rad--buggy--but rad!
God of War 3 - Too bloody, too gorgeous, too impressively jaunty, too many plot holes and ultimately too awesome to pass up for PS3 owners.
God of War Ghost of Sparta - Simply one of the best PSP games around, but a stark reminder of why I'm not a fan of the PSP.
Halo: Reach - Easily the best single player Halo campaign to date. Though it's coupled with a robust mulitplayer model I still lost interest after a week (I realize 75% of you are now leaving this blog).
Heavy Rain - A step forward in long video game drama, a step backwards in voice acting, a step forward in quick time interaction, a step backwards in reducing that whole uncanny valley effect but a step forward in graphical fidelity. Plus it was fun.
Just Cause 2 - A (real!) open world game where the protagonist has a grappling hook, a parachute and must destroy a bunch of things for money--I mean come ON! This is easily one of my most favorite games of 2010.
Kayne and Lynch 2: Dog Days - Dirty, slimy, bloody and stripped clean--not only does this describe the protagonist of the game but it this pretty much describes how I felt after playing the game.
King's Bounty Armored Princess - I just adore this whole series, and Armored Princess does a nice job of building on the King's Bounty experience.
Kirby's Epic Yarn - If you told me a year ago that I would enjoy a Kirby game more than a Metroid game I would have slapped you (probably with my shoe too), but that's actually the case now. It's a really fun game, don't let the looks of it fool you.
Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light - A decidedly good game with some excellent coop puzzle elements.
Limbo - I really love that Limbo tries to tell a story that's completely left up for interpretation without arrogance, but most importantly at the end of the day it never loses sight of what it is--a well made video game.
Mafia 2 - I had a love first game, so I was anticipating the sequel immensely. Unfortunately the "window shopping only" design within the city only teased me until frustration set in. A gorgeously designed metropolis that lacks any significant amount of interesting interactivity is incoherent in today's market.
Mass Effect 2 (x2 Xbox 360, x1 PC) - A better looking game than the first, much more to do than the first, a larger cast than the first, but the narrative is far less interesting and goes essentially nowhere--loved it enough to play it three times but in the end it's just not as epic as the first.
Matt Hazard: Blood Bath and Beyond - An interesting idea that falls very very flat.
Plants vs Zombies - I've played this ridiculously addictive game on just about every platform--so, yea, great times.
Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands - There's a reason the word forgotten is in the title.
Puzzle Quest 2 - An improvement over the first and I couldn't put it down.
Red Dead Redemption - A spaghetti western with something to say, if you pay close attention and listen then you'll realize it's the best game of 2010.
Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare - Leave it up to Rockstar to prove me wrong! After this DLC was announced I scoffed at the zomibfication of yet another game, but it turned out to be a fun and wacky add-on.
Resident Evil 5 - Tank controls that didn't annoy, and ultimately lead to a lot of fun. I think we've reached a point with the series where it's in need to take a serious look at itself.
Singularity - Enjoyable enough to play all the way through, but in the end was forgettable enough that I had to check to be sure it came out this year. :(
Spider-man: Shattered Dimensions - Surprisingly fun with a ton of variety, but a little to modulated with all the different Spider-mans you control.
Splinter Cell Conviction - I really appreciate what they were going for with it's minimalistic approach but I was hoping for something as powerful as Chaos Theory, heck I would've taken something half as interesting.
Split Second Velocity - I love arcade racers and this beautiful game had enough going for it that I deemed it my favorite racer of 2010.
Super Mario Galaxy 2 - An incredible amount of variety in gameplay mechanics and a ton of fun to play--and I know this is going to sound crazy--but I found it to be a tad too long.
Supreme Commander 2 - I'm a sucker for an RTS games that resembles Total Annihilation, but even then the boredom began to set in at the 15 minute mark.
The Partials! Here is a list of the games I spent a considerable amount of time with (usually 5+ hours or so) but didn't completed in time to make this list.
Monster Hunter Tri
Final Fantasy 13
Army of Two: The 40th Day
Battlefield: Bad Company 2
Metal of Honor
The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom
Need For Speed: Hot Persuit
Dead to Rights: Retribution
3D Dot Game Heroes
Lost Planet 2
Dragon Quest 9
Metroid Other M
Amnesia: The Dark Decent
Castlenavia Lord of Shadows
DJ Hero 2
Pac-man Championship Edition DX
Gran Turismo 5
World of Warcraft: Cataclysm
Bejewled 2 Blitz