CINESCAPE's Top 10 Games of 2001 - Mania.com



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CINESCAPE's Top 10 Games of 2001

We pick our favorites across all platforms

By James Stevenson and Troy Roberts     January 14, 2002


Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty
© 2001 Konami

Yeah, yeah, we know we gave our Best 10 list in CINESCAPE's "Year in Review" issue. But, now that both Troy and I have gotten in ample time with all of last year's games, we feel prepared to give our final Top 10 list. Read on.


Honorable Mention: GOLDEN SUN


Nintendo rocked the boat with the release of GOLDEN SUN for the Game Boy Advance, showing that SquareSoft isn't the only company in the world that can make great RPGs. An interesting game about a boy and his friends who must defeat the darkness that is approaching with their mystical Psynergy, GOLDEN SUN shows off the true power of the Game Boy Advance with the best graphics I have seen yet for the system. This game is addictive, so once you pick it up, don't expect to put it down anytime soon. -TR


10.  CONKER'S BAD FUR DAY


"I don't know, go fight some war somewhere" famous lines before Conker re-enacts the invasion of Omaha beach from the movie SAVING PRIVATE RYAN. A satire focusing on genre movies such as APOCOLYPSE NOW, THE MATRIX, ALIENS and STAR WARS, this platformer not only poked fun at our favorite films, but also at its own genre of videogames. Getting away from collector-mania helped the most, and the awesome multiplayer mode made Conker the last hurrah for the Nintendo 64. -JS


9.  TONY HAWK'S PRO SKATER 3


Do the guys at Neversoft ever run out of ideas? Tony Hawk was genius, the additions made in PRO SKATER 2 impressed us, and HAWK 3 has blown us out of the water with awesome visuals, the revert, and the most interactive environments in the series yet. With secrets ranging from Darth Maul to the famous cheats, TONY HAWK 3 is one of the best buys for the Playstation 2. -JS


8.  DYNASTY WARRIORS 3


One of the most addictive games we have ever played, DYNASTY WARRIORS 3 improves on the excellent gaming engine that its predecessor had. The storyline is basically non-existent (other than "We're fighting for our land, and anyone in our way must die"), but when you're having fun, who needs a storyline? Ripping through hundreds of enemies is fun enough, but playing with a friend can be ten times better. Although there is some slowdown at times in multiplayer, it can be overlooked. DYNASTY WARRIORS 3 is a classic. -TR


7.  SUPER SMASH BROS. MELEE


The follow-up to Nintendo's vastly popular mascot brawler, SUPER SMASH BROS. MELEE gave us more of what made the old game great, and vast amounts of options, game modes, and trophies to unlock. We've spent countless hours messing with all the features and trying to get all the trophies (and not to mention playing the awesome multiplayer mode). It's a peek into the glorious past of the best videogame developer in the world. - JS


6. GRAN TURISMO 3: A-SPEC


Anytime a racing game makes you a better driver (or, a driver who can more proficiently control cars at high speeds), you know it has to be good. Not only does GT3 give you a true sense of driving a car, but also lets you drive cars that most people would never get to touch in person. It's the "drive of your life" and the stunning locations, incredible physics, and fun gameplay kept us busy all summer. -JS


5.  STAR WARS ROGUE SQUADRON II: ROGUE LEADER


One of the killer games released for the Nintendo GameCube at launch, ROGUE LEADER improves on the gameplay of its predecessor. ROGUE LEADER's graphics are simply amazing, and the details on nearly every piece of STAR WARS equipment are almost perfect (down to the shadows on the Death Star, or the lighting effects of lasers reflecting off of your X-Wing). With the universally known STAR WARS soundtrack playing while you fly, and Denis Lawson's (Wedge) voice echoing through your television speakers, it's the closest you can get to being in the STAR WARS universe. -TR


4.  HALO


One of the standout games for the Xbox, HALO delivers groundbreaking gameplay and beautiful graphics that only show a glimpse of what the Microsoft system has to offer. With a wide variety of weapons at your disposal, you are out to save the universe from the scum of the galaxy, as you are the only one that can stop them. The cooperative play is a gem, and the game shows very little slowdown during any of the multiplayer modes. Easily one of the best games of the year. -TR


3.  FINAL FANTASY X


While Troy and I have very differing views on the course of the Final Fantasy series since VII, we both agree that FINAL FANTASY X rocks. A lot has been changed, and while the traditionalist in me screams foul, I gave the game a chance and found it to be extremely rewarding. The experience system, battle system, and dialogue all helped increase the value and ingenuity of the game. The only minor complaint that held the game back from top honors was loss of the overworld and the fact that the music isn't up to the standards of the pre-VII days. -JS


2.  GRAND THEFT AUTO III


This criminal/mafia game is an incredible experience for those who are old enough (17) to experience it. After getting busted out of jail, you begin hijacking cars, whacking people, hiring prostitutes, becoming a taxi driver, blowing up bases, rigging cars with bombs, and most importantly, getting involved in gang politics. The game is free form and there are plenty of hidden things to discover in Liberty City (roughly modeled after New York). It's truly a masterpiece and a revolutionary game. -JS


1.  METAL GEAR SOLID 2: SONS OF LIBERTY


Drum roll please... Standing above all of the rest, METAL GEAR SOLID 2 proves itself as the best game of 2001. The long awaited sequel to its Playstation predecessor, MGS2 breaks new ground in the video gaming industry. Playing as Solid Snake, you must thwart the newest terrorist attempt to gain control of the new Metal Gear project, Ray. With a plethora of twists and turns, an engrossing storyline, and an enhanced gaming engine, it's no wonder that METAL GEAR SOLID 2 is our choice for game of the year. -TR


Worst Game: RUNE VIKING WARLORD


As always, there is always one game that stands out to us: one that is almost unplayable, reeks of bad gameplay, and just utterly sucks. This year that game is RUNE: VIKING WALORD. While the graphics aren't terrible, the controls are just awful, causing me to throw my controller in anger and frustration numerous times. And the storyline could have been whipped up by a group of kids. Take Two Interactive slipped up by allowing this game to be released. -TR

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