My Beloved Games

Since I’m going to be writing many reviews and forming many opinions, I thought that I should give an idea of where I’m coming from. So here are some of my favourite games in  various genres. Please note this isn’t a “best games ever” list, but simply a list with some of my personal favourites from different genres and time periods.

Action Adventure

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time – This game is mentioned every time someone utters the words “best video game,” and it’s become almost a cliché to claim that Ocarina of Time is one of your favourite games. But no matter how you choose to look at, it’s undeniable that Ocarina of Time is simply a fantastic game. It featured a huge, detailed, and changing world with many vibrant and memorable characters, and large secret-filled cities and towns. It was a massive leap forward for gaming as it was one of the first games to offer a truly cinematic story and experience. It also boasted a beautiful and unique visual style, some of the catchiest and most beloved tunes in gaming, and it even introduced the lock-on targeting mechanic. But most of all, underneath all these advancements and accomplishments, the game was insanely fun, and still stands the test of time to this day.

That Game of the Year sticker isnt doing the game justice.

Bayonetta – It’s quite obvious from the trailers alone that Bayonetta is not for everyone. It’s dumb, over-the-top, provocative, overly sexual, ridiculous, and it doesn’t even make sense half the time. Yet the gameplay, which you would expect to be in the same vein as its presentation and story, is on another level entirely. The combat is some of the most fun, intense, complex, and rewarding action elements of any game before it. The combat is smooth and quick, yet every punch, kick and shot has significant weight. There are numerous weapons, each with a unique feel and play-style. The enemies are quirky and ridiculous, and each of them offers a unique challenge when fought. The bosses are massive, repulsive, and oddly-beautiful creatures that both offer a challenging fight but also an insanely fun encounter. If you’re one of those people, like me, that just loves over-the-top ridiculousness, then Bayonetta has a lot to offer.

Brutally killing angels has never been so sexy.

RPG

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic – KotOR was my first Bioware game. That alone should be enough of an explanation to why I hold this game so dear to my heart, but I just can’t stop myself from talking about it. Aside from being one of the few Star Wars games that is actually good (and even better than half of the films), KotOR is a phenomenal game because of its deep yet accessible combat and its compelling and satisfying story. Set 4000 years before the Empire rose to power, KotOR puts you in the role of an unlikely Jedi that is tasked with discovering both why the Sith have become so powerful, but also how to stop them. I dare not spoil the story any further, since it is one of the best stories you can find in any game, and to this day still remains my favourite. Let’s just say that there are some marvellous characters, events, and plot twists that will have you wishing that the game will last forever. The dialogue options were also a real blast, because, unlike so many other games that let you choose your protagonists dialogue, KotOR was ruthless with its evil options. Knights was the first game that made me stop playing as an evil person just because of how cruel some of the options were. I feel like I’m rambling now, so I’ll conclude by saying that Knights of the Old Republic is a great game because of its combat, but a great experience because of its story.

See this droid? He thinks youre a meatbag.

Mass Effect 2 – Bioware strikes again. Unlike KotOR, which was a bridge between Bioware’s action and story-oriented RPG’s and their old-school D n’ D RPG’s, the Mass Effect series is full on action and story. And no game has a better blend of visceral combat, an engaging and powerful story, both massive and personal decisions, and just plain epic-ness, then Mass Effect 2. I’m sure most people are aware of why Mass Effect 2 was such a superb game, but for me, there were two things that really made it stand out. Firstly, the game was one of the most personal games to be released. Being able to import your Shepherd from the original Mass Effect was a phenomenal thing, as it guaranteed that each player would have their own unique Mass Effect 2. It also, to the disdain of many, was much more personal story-wise instead of being epic (but it was still pretty epic). The story focused almost entirely on Shepherd getting to know and help his crew, and it showed the personal struggles that each companion had to endure, and allowed the player to influence the way they resolved each problem. This really hadn’t been seen in a game before, at least not on this level of quality, and it really added a lot of depth to the experience. The next most important aspect for me was actually pretty simple and straightforward; Mass Effect 2 was the first game to completely focus on the fact that you were role playing a person, not a certain class or a series of numbers. And that is a huge leap forward for story telling in games.

You could sleep with her, but... ew.

 

FPS

Half Life 2 – Valve have proven on many different occasions that they are the masters of making first-person shooters, and no game in their catalogue was as good as Half Life 2. Now, I can go on about how the controls were fluid and precise, or how the physics engine was fantastic, or that it still holds up graphically to this day, or that the story is really engaging, or that the characters are just awesome, or a whole bunch of stuff. However, when it comes down to it, there is one reason that this game really stood out to me, and is still a fun and unique experience to this day: The gravity gun. What is the gravity gun? Well, simply put, it picks stuff up, and shoots it. So, instead of killing the Combine with a pistol, or a shotgun, or a crowbar, why not pick up a rusty saw blade with the gravity gun, and shoot that at the combine? And once he’s dead, why not just pick up his body and shoot it at the next enemy? The gravity gun made a fantastic game so much better by the small task of allowing the player to kill enemies with whatever garbage was just lying around.

Wait... are those... hipster glasses?

Doom – I’m not gonna lie; I first played this on the Xbox Live Arcade. I was always interested in it, but was either too lazy or too cheap to actually download it on to my PC. When it came out on the Arcade, I finally gave in, probably because I could get some achievements out of it. I was expecting a linear, old school shooter that’s appeal was mostly based on nostalgia. To my surprise, Doom turned out to be a fantastic game with a lot of charm. The levels, firstly, were incredibly large considering when it was made, and had so many secrets that that it seemed impossible to find them all. The guns are still some of the most memorable weapons that I’ve ever seen, from the simple shotgun, to the wicked yellow chainsaw, to the legendary BFG. Why I loved it, though, was because I was so amazed that a game so old could still manage to charm and engross myself so much, even though, at the time at least, I wasn’t in to shooters and had never played the game before in my life. It really gave me a new perspective on classic games, and I really wish more people would try it out.

Dont think, just shoot!

Platformer 
 
 Banjo-Tooie – Banjo-Tooie was my first game in the Banjo series, so I really had nothing to compare it to other then Super Mario 64, and, as unlikely as it may seem, I think that Banjo-Tooie was a much better overall game then Mario 64. Banjo-Tooie was just so unique. It’s world was heavily based on musical objects, names, and ideas. The characters we’re insanely wacky and awesome, such as the weird female shaman Humba Wumba that turns Banjo into weird objects with her purple goop, or Jamjars, the sergeant-mole that hides in metal silos, waiting to teach the bear and bird new skills. The game’s writing was smart, witty, and funny for both adults and children without compromising anything. But most importantly, the game was absolutely massive, featuring some of the coolest, most unique, and most diverse collection of levels and mini games that is rivalled by only a few, even today.

 

Back when Rare made good games...

Super Mario World – Of course Mario is going to pop up any time someone mentions platformer. For me, Super Mario World has always been my favourite. It wasn’t my first Mario game, nor do I think it was the most important Mario game. It just felt like the most complete package when compared to all the other games. Every other Mario game seemed to have a small fault that SMW never had; I never liked the slippery feel of Mario in Super Mario 64, the original Super Mario Bros. got repetitive near the end, and I felt, no matter how many people legitimately proved otherwise, Super Mario Galaxy felt like Mario 64 in space. Super Mario World had no such problems. It had lots of fun and unique levels and worlds, tons of small and big secrets that were a blast to hunt down, and it was a challenging game that never seemed too difficult or unfair. Mario’s controls we’re tight and fluid, the game looked beautiful and just oozed personality, and, of course, Yoshi! It may not be the best in certain places, it may not have changed the face of gaming, but it certainly was one hell of a fun game.

But hes gonna miss the Yoshi coin!

Strategy

Warcraft III – I could just as easily put any other Blizzard RTS on here, as they are all exemplary games, but my personal favourite has always been Warcraft III. It was just. Plain. Awesome. It had everything a Blizzard RTs had become known for; a few unique races, you harvest two resources, one major and one minor, you have a population cap that seems just a bit too small, and, most importantly, it was fun. There are no complex ideas or difficult to master controls. It was straightforward. Just harvest resources, build units, and go annihilate stuff. Warcraft III had the Blizzard polish that all their games come with (along with a long development time) and a simple system that, although easy to use, took quite a while to master. However, the one small thing that I loved was the story of Arthas, the fallen Prince. I always found his story fascinating, and I loved that so many of his friends and colleagues tried to help him, even though he was so far beyond redemption. As you can probably see by now, most of these games are so special because of the smallest things…

Before it allegedly became a world.

Starcraft – … but not this game. Starcraft was just great (I don’t want to seem like a developer fan-boy, Having two games from Bioware for RPG, and two from Blizzard for Strategy, but these developers truly are the pioneers and masters of their genres). Even though I alluded to it not appearing on this list, I really couldn’t help myself. Starcraft is just such a perfect RTS. Three diverse races with very different playing styles? Check. An almost surprising level of balance between each class? Yup. A lengthy campaign that both challenged players and prepared them for online play? Of course. Simple and easy to grasp gameplay that becomes more difficult, complex, and rewarding over time? You bet. Inventing the term “zerging?” Becoming South Korea’s national sport? Yes, Starcraft did indeed go above and beyond what a strategy game needed to be good, and instead brought an experience that is still played today, even after the release of the sequel, and is still considered the best real-time-strategy game of all time.

But... I dont even...

            So, there are just a few of my favourite games. I have many more, and those wouldn’t necessarily make my top ten games of all time, but they are still games that I am really glad to have had the fortune of playing.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: