Best Video Games of 2010 -

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Best Video Games of 2010

By Briana Lawrence     December 28, 2010

Best Video Games of 2010
© Mania/Robert Trate

 We usually do a monthly game article to talk about the games we’re excited for.  We’re going to skip December since there aren’t too many big releases this month.  Instead, we’re going to talk about the games we have enjoyed this year as a whole.  



 January brought us Darksiders and Mass Effect 2.  The combat in Darksiders reminded us of God of War but the open world adventure brought us memories of Zelda, creating a great game to kick start 2010.  Later on that month brought us Mass Effect 2, proving once again that BioWare is the developer to turn to when it comes to action-adventure rpgs. 



 While seeing Rapture for a second time might not have had as many surprises as our first trip, the world was still creepy, intriguing, and fun to play through.  Thank you, Bioshock 2.  The next game that we enjoyed this month was the murder mystery Heavy Rain.  It might not have been the most action packed game this year but the plot and the characters are what made the game exciting.  There are just some scenes that we’ll never forget -- Madison trying to escape that mad man’s basement?  That still gives us the creeps! 



God of War 3 gave PS3 owners something to be proud of.  The amazing graphics and brutal gameplay reminded us why we’re Sony fans.  Pokemon Heartgold and Soulsilver brought back a memory of a simpler time when the franchise was still new to us and reminded us why these games are still addictive.  Dragon Age Origins: Awakening continued the hit rpg franchise with a new campaign.  Sadly, Final Fantasy XIII didn’t live up to the expectations we had; we were looking forward to gushing about it but after so many years of waiting it was not the game we wanted it to be.



The only game of interest from this month is Super Street Fighter 4.  After already playing through the original Street Fighter 4 we had doubts about re-buying what seemed like the same game.  But with new characters and new combos the game ended up being better than the first.



The masterminds behind Grand Theft Auto brought us an open world western called Red Dead Redemption and it quickly became a favorite among all gamers.  Super Mario Galaxy 2 took us on a grand adventure with Mario and the cutest dinosaur ever created: Yoshi!  For the survival horror fans, Alan Wake was the newest edition to the genre, making future writers think twice about the manuscripts they create. 




Metal Gear Solid Peacewalker was one of the biggest games on the PSP, finally giving people reason to take interest in Sony’s handheld device once again.  Lego Harry Potter was the newest entry into the always entertaining Lego franchise, while Sin and Punishment: Star Successor gave wii users a fast-paced rail shooter.




StarCraft II, StarCraft II, StarCraft II!  Not much else to say about that so moving on.  Handhelds were the spotlight this month as Dragon Quest IX was released on the DS and Persona 3 was re-released on the PSP.  Both met rpger’s gaming needs, be it action, adventure or twisted storyline where players shot themselves in the head.  For the gamers into the fast-paced 2D fighters, BlazBlue pulled a Super Street Fighter 4 with the release of BlazBlue: Continuum Shift which added more characters, new challenge modes, and revamps of the stages.



Surprisingly, the PSP dominated this month.  The Y’s series made its PSP debut with Y’s seven while the PS3 tactical rpg Valkyrie Chronicles got a sequel on the PSP, Valkyrie Chronicles 2.  Both games continued to breathe life into the system, making it worth our time once again.  Much like Final Fantasy XIII we desperately wanted to rave about Metroid: Other M but... sigh... moving on...



 As Sony released their motion controller: the Playstation Move, Microsoft struck back with Halo Reach.  The PSP kept kicking with Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep, a worthy prequel to the series that simply made us want a part 3... now... please?  The DS released Professor Layton and the Unwound Future, the third game in the puzzle solving series.  Killing zombies became popular again with Dead Rising 2 and a creepy survival horror game quietly launched on the PC: Amnesia the Dark Descent.  We recommended this over the flop that was Final Fantasy XIV



Let’s start with the sequels: Fallout New Vegas, Rockband 3, Super Scribblenauts, Fable 3, and Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm 2.  It was a post apocalyptic rock performance with creative word games, tyrannical kings, and ninjas who storm... 2.  The Star Wars fan is us will mention Star Wars the Force Unleashed 2 but be warned: it’s very, very short.  Speaking of “short but fun” games, Enslaved: Odyssey of the West unfortunately met that criteria.  Can Ninja Theory just not make a long game?  Two big game franchises -- Castlevania and Kirby -- got reboots with Castlevania: Lords of Shadow and Kirby’s Epic Yarn.  Two epic adventures: one with a cool fellow named Gabriel and another with the cutest puffball in existence.  Before the giant FPS orgasm that is Call of Duty gamers got a hold of Medal of Honor, but reviews weren’t nearly as strong as we wanted them to be.



Here we go.  Of course we’re going to mention the biggest game release of the year: Donkey Kong Country Returns!  O.K., o.k., you know we’re talking about Call of Duty: Black Ops but Donkey Kong is amazing and full of bananas.  Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood was another huge game release this month, letting us do what we love best: kill people with a cool ass character.  God of War: Ghost of Sparta let us do the same thing, only more violently -- oh Kratos, you angry man you.  Microsoft wisely waited until holiday season to release their motion device: the Kinect, and the thing has been selling like cakes that are hot.  In return, Sony finally released Gran Turismo 5 after telling all of us that it would be released next year.  Nintendo had their hands full with GoldenEye, Epic Mickey, and Golden Sun: Dark Dawn -- a game fans had been waiting for for 7 years.  We’ve always been fans of GoldenEye -- ever since the Nintendo 64 -- and Epic Mickey took us into a twisted Disney World with wonky camera angles that got very annoying very quickly... but the story’s so interesting that we continued on.



The mad rushes of games have slowed down quite a bit but there are three titles worth mentioning: World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, Super Mario All-Stars, and Tron.  We’re not big WoW players ourselves, but we can’t deny that it’s the biggest MMORPG out there.  We’re definitely excited for Super Mario All-Stars, not only for the game, but for the collectible goodies it comes with. 


Bonus Round:  Downloads!

This year has been full of downloadable games that have been rated just as high -- if not higher -- than the console games that were released this year.  In this section, we’re going to talk about the games that have been worth all of those extra online purchases.  Red Dead Redemption got some interesting DLC this year, but there’s one pack that even IGN called a “masterpiece.”  Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare combined aliens with cowboys... er... we mean zombies with cowboys, yeah, that’s it... where did we get aliens and cowboys?  Next up is a personal favorite that warms our little gamer heart: Scott Pilgrim vs. The World.  If you enjoyed the movie then definitely give the game a try.  Limbo was a very cool, almost creepy game that was visually amazing with blacks, whites, and grays to illustrate a shadowy world full of nasty traps.  A new platformer was released whose main character is... a cube of meat, but Super Meat Boy was much more challenging than it sounds and provided ridiculous amounts of entertainment.  Costume Quest was an interesting rpg where your sibling is kidnapped while trick or treating, so it’s up to you to save the day before... curfew? 

Sonic the Hedgehog returned in a game that brought him back to his 2D roots: Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode one.  Joining the old school hedgehog in the “classic remake” category was Castlevania, Pac-Man Championship Edition, Perfect Dark, and Lara Croft went on a new adventure in Lara Croft: Guardian of Light.    


So that’s how 2010 shapes up.  We had some great games and some disappointing games but, in the end, we still had a good time and are anxiously awaiting next year.  Was 2010 a great year for you?


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kswizzle 12/28/2010 6:28:33 AM

I have to agree with this list. although I did enjoy the marine campaign in Alien V. Predator, I completely get why that didn't make the list. The only thing I really see missing...X-MEN the 90's arcade game in downloads. God I loved that game and playing it online is great.

brichibi 12/28/2010 10:18:31 AM

@kswizzle:  LOL!  I knew I would forget something, X-MEN is great!  Now if only they would bring back the old Simpsons arcade game...

mutantlexi 12/28/2010 10:37:38 AM

 I squealed in delight when I saw the old X-Men arcade game on PSN. Now if they'd rerelease the Capcom D&D and Alien v Predator 4-player arcade games, I'd be a happy fangirl.

Walker 12/28/2010 11:42:55 AM

 For DLC, IGN also really liked ME2's Lair of the Shadowbroker.

I was not a fan of Undead Nightmare.  The heavy siege combat and searching for cover demonstrated just how god awful the controls in that game are.  Red Dead shines in the outdoors because (at least on the 360) it is near impossible to walk through a door.  If you get hung on the edge of a door, then no amount of turning will fit you through. It is easier to run back out and run back at the door than to try to turn your body into the door.

Similarly, the cover system is horrible.  Any time I was up on a porch trying to shoot zombies, my attempts to aim would have me looking square at the railing instead of the creatures below; it appears John Marsten is not smart enough to be able to aim over waist-high obstacles (which is what would happen in a proper cover system).  To hit the zombies I would have to dangle my self on the edge of the roof with railings or barriers in the way.

I really, really wanted to like Red Dead.  However, the crappy controls make it unsuitable for anything other than outdoor activities (e.g. hunting, rustling, and fighting bad guys in the open).

zalder 12/30/2010 6:40:26 AM

I am SO HAPPY THAT AMNESIA MADE THIS LIST!  Seriously try this game now if you haven't tried it.  SCARY AS HELL!  You did forget recetter an item shop's tale though.  A great and hilarious translation of a japanese game.

hanso 12/30/2010 6:16:19 PM

 What game didn't make this list, everything is included :)



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