My kids told my wife they wanted to get me a game for my birthday. Only problem was I had nothing on my short list of games wanted, so I had to do a little research and see what piqued my interest. I came up with three games I secretly gave to my wife so my kids wouldn’t think I knew what was up and she would know what to buy on their behalf. I gave them Dishonored, Metro Last Light, and a third game I do not remember at the moment. I emphasized how I thought Last Light would be “really cool.” On my special day I found Dishonored to my surprise. My kids said they wanted to see me do the stealth thing. They made a damn good choice. If you were thinking about getting this game go ahead and do it, but read the rest of the spoiler-free review for why you should get it.
After doing several “best of” lists centered on music, it’s time to turn attention to my favorite videogames. Coming up with a best 25 was hard to do since I have been twiddling my joystick for quite some time now…since Atari – get your minds out of the gutter! I can bet with quite certainty that some of my favorite games are long forgotten and left off this list, but for the sake of picking 25 games I looked at the ensemble of consoles and PC games I played over the years. I think I captured the breadth of my favorite games across a spectrum of genres. To put them in order was another task all-together since each game provided a different experience at a different point in my life. So, I would place less emphasis on where the game is on my list and pay more attention to the fact that it made my list at all. Of all the games I played in my life narrowing my favorites down to 25 speaks volumes of the game’s impact on me. Enough rambling, let’s get on with the list!
Continuing with a post I made about some cool games to check out if you’re on a budget (but should still check out even if you’re not), here’s some more great games I’ve played that are worthy of your attention. I’ll highlight both great indie games, classics that have aged well, as well as some modern AAA game that you can now find on the cheap. If you have any suggestions on some great games for those of us on a budget give them a shout out in the comments, as with music, I’m always on the lookout for great games to play. And if you are interested in hooking up with me for some PC gaming, you can find me on Steam with the user name RiffRaff79. So without further ado, here are some cool games to check out.
Once again, the city of Steelport is under fire; caught in the crossfire from rival gangs. Saints Row: The Third (or Saints Row 3) takes the fight to the streets in this open-world action/adventure game. In this third installment, the Saints attempt to regain control of Steelport from the gangs that comprise The Syndicate. It’s a complex story of organized crime, but a simple plot…regain control.
What’s the worst thing a developer can put in a video game. Escort missions. Bring the mentally challenged, paint-chip eating AI controlled character from point A to point B without letting him/her be killed. These type of missions always end up with said AI character running face first into a storm of swords, wandering off a cliff, or skipping into a hungry horde of zombies. Somehow in Resident Evil 4, Capcom addressed this issue with the escort missions by letting you toss your escortee, Ashley, into a dumpster while you ran around and killed off all the lurking zombies. This method worked to an extent, but was not perfect. There were times I wished I was able to give her a shotgun and have her blow away a zombie when they found her in her comfy little dumpster. Well, I guess I wasn’t the only person to want to be able to do this, because in RE5, Capcom lets you give your “partner” an entire arsenal of weapons.
While digging around in the bargain bin at my local media shop I came across a game called Darksiders. I had remembered hearing some decent press about it, the screenshots on the back of the box seemed interesting to me, and the price was right so I picked it up. When I got home and finally got around to popping it into my Xbox360 I found myself rather impressed by a title that I had thought would be an average time killer.
The original two Fallout games were stokes of genius in the RPG realm and really helped popularize western RPGs throughout the world. They gave you a sense of freedom and the ability to solve quests in any way you wanted. They gave you a destroyed post-apocalyptic Earth to travel around instead of the typical “D&D/anime” setting that eastern RPGs had been providing. They also help popularize the quest based method of advancing the game which made a huge impact on the way that many games today are played out. Above all, they were fresh and original, and also very funny at times.
What would the world look like years after the apocalypse? I bet images of nuclear fallout, grey skies, and world devoid of any plant life pass through your mind. In our modern way of thinking the most likely way of our civilization on the plant Earth coming to an end would be through nuclear war, and at this moment in time, you would be right. But what about possible another angle? Like another classic end of the world scenario, our obsession with computers, convenience, and technology turning against us and wiping out the human race. That’s the angle that developer Ninja Theory took when developing the world that inhabits Enslaved: Odyssey to the West.
It’s that angle that works in spades in the favor of Enslaved. Since there has been no nuclear war plant life is allowed to flourish, and because plant life is allowed to flourish the Earth is able to retain all its majestic and natural beauty. With all this natural beauty that the Earth provides for us the world of Enslaved is able to utilize just about every color under the sun and give the player a lush and alluring world to explore. We get beautiful vistas, color drenched landscapes, ruins of old cities overgrown with foliage, and on top of all that, we get one hell of a narrative.
“What a horrible night to have a curse.” In Castlevania II: Simon’s Quest that phrase would appear to signify a change from day to night. And for some reason, big changes, like day to night, were a curse upon the Castlevania series. The series has adopted minor changes throughout its life, such as using the Super Metroid style maps and incorporating an experience point system, but anytime the series tried to make a major change, such as, let’s say move from 2D to 3D, its curse would rear its ugly head. A couple of the 3D attempts were mildly decent, the rest were complete failures. A big reason for that I believe is because the people who were working on the games lost way and forgot what made the Castlevania games so great in the past.