Thursday, January 5, 2012

Best Games of 2011 Part 3

Tomorrow will be last one and will just be my game of the year. One small note I was going to include Skyward Sword but the last few days I’ve not played as much of it as I thought and don’t feel I’ve played enough of it to really say whether I like it or not.


I wasn’t sure whether to include this game. Firstly, it came out before 2011 but wasn’t released on PC until 2011 but screw it, it’s what I played it on. Secondly, I was kind of disappointed in the game because for all its aspirations of pretention it ends on a whimper and some of the puzzles at the end are too obtuse at times. However I did have a lot of fun with this game and absolutely love the atmosphere conjured up by the gorgeous art and ambience. It may have been disappointing but it’s still excellent.

Bit.Trip Runner

Another game released before 2011 but again only released this year on PC. Despite being just another one of those platformers where you constantly run forwards (think Canabalt or Robot Unicorn Attack) I feel Bit.Trip Runner is the best of its kind. It’s maddeningly difficult but I keep coming back to it, I think it’s something to do with how the gloriously infectious chip tune music is controlled by your actions in the game.


I’ve already said loads about this game in a previous post. While games like Dragon Age and Mass Effect are embarrassing in how they treat relationships it’s great to finally get a game that is so well written and deals with issues that aren’t just violence in the videogame medium. Outside of the narrative the block pushing puzzle elements are deceptively deep. In terms of best writing and narrative this year it’s a toss-up between this and Portal 2 but I’m going to give it to this because it deals so well with issues that I thought would never be covered by a videogame.


I got very addicted to this game while it was in beta form last year, so addicted that I gave it up otherwise my thesis would never have gotten completed!  When I finally returned to the game it had finally reached its full release. What a difference a few months made. It’s like a completely different game. So much has been added, from new items, to RPG elements and even a singleplayer endgame to strive for. However it was the multiplayer that had me hooked. I’m sick to death of shooters so it’s so refreshing to jump into minecraft with similarly minded people, construct something you are proud of and then be green with envy when a neighbour one ups you in spectacular fashion.

Worst Game of 2011: Duke Nukem Forever

Oh deary me. It took 14 years for them to come up with this? DNF is one of the most uninspired and boring FPS games I’ve ever had the misfortune to play. It feels really dated, featuring awful level design including some terrible turret sections that were dated back in 1998. Some people think the character of Duke is dated but it’s not the problem with him. In Duke 3D he quoted some 80’s movies and there was a small bit of naughtiness but it was cheeky more than anything. Some of the sexual ‘jokes’ that Duke comes out with in DNF range from embarrassing to downright loathsome. I bought this game for five euros in the steam sale and still feel ripped off.

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