The Kidds’ Gaming Highlights of 2011
I have a lot to say about these games so this will be a short intro. These are the best games I played in 2011 in order.
10. Sonic Generations
Sonic Generations blended classic 2D sonic action and modern 3D sonic very well. This was my first 3D sonic experience so everything felt brand new to me. I played Sonic 4 episode 1 earlier in the year and really had fun with the “homing” mechanic. Generations sucked me in with the use of its pretty colors and remixed tunes from previous Sonics. Yes Nostalgia played a huge role here but even if I were to overlook that, im left with a modern 2D/3D side-scroller/platformer that is both accessible to any new gamers and feels as familiar as an old bike for old school gamers.
The obligatory yearly Football purchase. PES 2012 built upon the strengths that its predecessor had, the pin point passing accuracy, the in depth Master League and the super fun, Be A Pro mode. This year the graphics got an upgrade and the allready in depth single player mode got an addition in the form of Club Boss mode.
I found myself sinking hours upon hours in the Master League again, the game can be grueling on the hardest difficulty but it is oh-so-rewarding. The online matchmaking was not as good as FIFA 12’s but the single player modes were so engrossing it was barely possible for me to notice this. This is the best Pro Evolution Soccer Game made yet, I really hope Konami manage to get the licence rights for all the teams one day, maybe then gamers will feel more compelled to try this amazing Football simulator.
This is my favourite Rockstar game, yup thats a huge call right? Well the originality of LA Noire is what wins it for me. I likened this game to a western Visual Novel, the interrogation sequences were the main hook for me. I really love to have choice in my games even if it is given to us as an illusion. The highlights in this game for me were not the car chases or the over the top alley way shoot-outs but the moments with Cole Phelps chatting to his partners in the car while listening to authentic 1940’s music and propaganda radio. How many Video Games can you say give you that?
If you are too lazy to click the links here is the basic summary;
Puzzles + Anime + Choice + Fanservice + Crazy Story + Insane Difficulty = Best Puzzle game I’ve ever played.
6.MGS Peace Walker HD
I played Peace Walker on my brothers PSP, I needed a second analog stick. I got one when Kojima released the MGS HD collection in November. Peace Walker was essentially Metal Gear Solid 5 so my expectations were high and thankfully they were all met. Recruiting members for the MSF was a lot of fun, I really enjoyed the management side of things. shuffling around soldiers into specific departments that suited them or any need that I had at the time. The Boss battles were innovative and extremely difficult to beat and in signature Kojima fashion the cut scenes were long and glorious.
The flash backs to Snake Eater were just gold for me seeing as Snake Eater is my favourite game of all time and Hideo Kojima himself made a cameo in the game. That was all the fanservice I needed to cement this game as one of the best of 2011.
5.Deus Ex: Human Revolution
I hate First Person Shooters, so I ignored Deus Ex as if it was Modern Warfare 4: Black Ops 2, I really didnt care for it at all. I only gave it a chance after I noticed countless reviews continuosly having certain key words in them i.e Choice, Stealth, RPG and Multiple Endings. “Bull shit” I said, “no game can be that awesome and not a silly FPS for that matter.”
Thank God I was wrong. Human revolution is The Best FPS I have ever played, the dialogue options were all painted in an indistinguishable shade of Grey, the choices you could make gameplay wise were numerous. Wanna go guns blazing? go for it. Wanna go stealth? go for it. Wanna play smart, Half Life style? go for it.
I think Rukishou and The guys at Extra Credits explain why Dues Ex: Human Revolution is such an amazing game much better than I do.
I remember squeeing to myslef the first time I saw young Nathan Drake, it was at that moment that I knew I was in for one heck of an adventure. The visuals in this game were just outstanding, the gameplay was very similar to Uncharted 2 which I highly appreciated and as usual the voice acting was perfect. I remember shedding a tear during one scene between Nathan and Ellie, I remember justifying it to myself by saying “hey its just the voice acting, I don’t like these characters that much”
The set piece moments left me gasping for breath, I was screaming and shouting as a wave of water came chasing down the halls or as I was chasing down a convoy of trucks on horse back. Uncharted 3 has so many memorable moments its hard to remember them all individually. This is the best Uncharted game yet and that’s saying a lot.
Oh Bastion, I first heard of this game at the 2011 Spike VGAs’ at which it got all the awards it was nominated in. This really piqued my interest and I decided to try it out. My mind was blown, the action RPG gameplay style was very reminiscent of old school 16 bit era games like Sword of Mana and Story of Thor. The bright and colourful visuals were a feast for the eyes and the Real Time Narration often gave me goosebumps. This game was just oozing of creativity and fun.
I really loved the story slowly fleshed itself out and that ending OMG, never have I felt so compelled to play through a game a second time just to experience an ending once more. The music in this game is some of the best the video game industry has ever produced. Im left to wonder what Bastion would have been if it had the budget of a AAA game studio, best game of all time perhaps?
2.Shadow of the Collosus HD
How do you put perfection into words? How do you describe a masterful work of art, How does one express the extreme amounts of emotion one feels when one plays a Masterpiece?
The game balanced moments of intense action with the tranquility of riding quietly with your
noble steed best friend in the open fields on your way to battle. The battles themselves felt like Dances, each time I brought down a Collosus it felt like I had just gone through an emotional journey with them. The platforming was spot on, the game controlled superbly and the music was grande. The character animations were so in depth, you could see wanders hair shake, his clothes wrinkle up, he tripped, he fell, he held onto ledges for dear life. All this and no loading times at all, at all! People this was a Playstation 2 game, I still cant believe the PS2 managed to handle this game.
Team Ico really crafted something wonderful here, the story telling elements were subtle but extremely strong. The story of wander and his adventure to try and bring back his lover to life will be etched in my mind forever. This truly was a work of Art.
1.The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword
I’ll make this short and sweet. You know how Ocarina of Time is regarded as one of the best games ever made? Yeah Skyward Sword is just as good if not better than Ocarina of Time. Ocarina revolutionised gaming by introducing the Z Targeting technique, Skyward Sword will revolutionise gaming with the use of its 1:1 motion controls. The feeling I got everytime I beat an enemy swinging my Wii mote upwards and sideways trying to outsmart the AI can not be compared to the feeling you get mashing X 50 bajillion times.
The Story in SS was so engrossing, It gave me a legitimate reason to care for Zelda, I really wanted to get her back, I wanted to see how her relationship with Link would play out. Fi, my AI companion grew on me by the end, her monotonous lifelessness turned out to be a personality I found incredibly endearing right at the end.
The look and feel of this game is just wonderful, its bright colorful and joyful. The music is both solemn and epic, It filled me with this deep sense of Nostalgia that only a Zelda game can give me. This is My Best Game of 2011.