The Second Annual Coint and Plick Poll: ILG’s Best Video Games of 2008 - Part 2: The Top Forty!

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As requested, due to long load times, we're moving the top forty to a new thread.

You can get the rules for the poll, some background and see the complete info/videos/comments and so forth for #44 through #70 here:
The Second Annual Coint and Plick Poll: ILG’s Best Video Games of 2008

Here's the previous winners list:

#70: Penny Arcade: On The Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness (XBLA) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: Civilization IV: Colonization (PC) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: Spore Creature Creator (PC) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: KORG DS-10 Synthesizer (DS) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: LEGO Batman (36) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: Persona 4 (PS2) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: Condemned 2: Bloodshot (360) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: Dokapon Kingdom (Wii) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: You Found the Grappling Hook! – PC – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: NHL 2009 (PS3) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: Valkyria Chronicles (PS3) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: A Kingdom for Keflings – (XBLA) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: Pack Rat (Online) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: Deadly Rooms Of Death RPG (PC) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney (DS) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon (DS) – 5 points – 1 vote
#70: Aurora Feint (iPhone) – 5 points – 1 vote
#68: Mystery Dungeon: Shiren the Wanderer (DS) – 6 points – 1 vote
#68: Iji (PC) – 6 points – 1 vote – FREE GAME
#67: Dyson – (PC) – 8 points – 1 vote – FREE GAME
#66: Guitar Hero: World Tour (360/Wii) – 9 points – 2 votes
#55: Buzz! Quiz TV (PS3) – 10 points – 1 vote
#55: You Have to Burn the Rope (Internet/PC) – 10 points - 1 vote
#55: Nancy Drew: White Wolf of Icicle Creek (Wii) – 10 points - 1 vote
#55: Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII (PSP) – 10 points - 1 vote
#55: Chrono Trigger DS (DS) – 10 points - 1 vote
#55: Gears of War 2 (360 ) – 10 points - 1 vote
#55: Peggle Nights (PC) – 10 points - 1 vote
#55: Trackmania United Forever (PC) – 10 points - 1 vote[/
#55: Karoshi 2.0 (PC) – 10 points - 1 vote – FREE GAME
#55: Boom Blox (Wii) – 10 points - 1 vote
#55: Space Invaders Extreme (PSP) – 10 points - 1 vote
#53: Etrian Odyssey II: Heroes of Lagaard (DS) – 10 points – 2 votes
#53: World of Goo (MAC OSX/Wii) – 10 points – 2 votes
#51: Trauma Center 2: Under the Knife (DS) – 11 points – 2 votes
#51: Resistance 2 (PS3) – 11 points – 2 votes
#50: Super Smash Brothers Brawl (Wii) – 12 points – 2 votes
#49: FIFA ’09 (XBLA/PS3) – 14 point – 2 votes
#44: Dangerous High School Girls in Trouble (PC)– 15 points – 1 vote
#44: Singstar (PS3) – 15 points – 1 vote
#44: Crash Commando (PSN) – 15 points – 1 vote
#44: Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift (DS) – 15 points – 1 vote
#44: Barkley: Shut Up and Jam Gaiden, Chapter 1 of the Hoopz Barkley SaGa (PC) – 15 points – 1 vote – FREE GAME

Okay, let's get going!
Four say tie for #40 coming up.

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 11 February 2009 04:06 (ten years ago) link

#40: Violet: A Distraction (MAC OSX) – 15 points – 2 votes – FREE GAME
Official game site – Download Here

Mordy: I was probably predisposed to like this trifle of a game. Your protagonist is a boyfriend trying to finish his dissertation before his girlfriend leaves him. I know what it's like to write a paper while every distraction in the world is pulling at you. But also, I know what it's like to not want to disappoint someone you love. As you destroy your girlfriend's gifts, trying to salvage your relationship, the game doubles up on pathos. It's also the funniest and most surreal game to be written this year. A good argument that the age of interactive fiction is far from bankrupt of ideas.

Gravel Puzzleworth : I thought it was cute, although it left me a bit cold - actually I spent 20% of my time playing kind of outraged how this genuine first-time-author game was so much better implemented than any other IF I'd played - it sort of confirmed to me that when standard IF doesn't understand me it's the culture being wicked insular rather than some technical inability to do so?

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 11 February 2009 04:20 (ten years ago) link

#40: Pixeljunk Monsters (PSN) – 15 points – 2 votes
Official game site

Iroquois Pliskin: Pixeljunk Monsters follows in the path of the excellent (and free) flash game Desktop Tower Defense, which stripped away the genre's complex economic and unit-management aspects and reduced it to a simple formula: the game sends waves of enemies marching across the screen. You build different varieties of defensive towers in their path to kill them, which nets you money to buy more towers and upgrade your current stock. You win if you prevent these enemies from reaching the other end. That's it.

S1ocki: It seemed pretty fun and looked nice but I sensed right away that it would have the exact same fun value as any other web-based Desktop Tower Defense game, i.e. addictive for a few hours then impossibly hard and I'll never want to look at it again.

Jamescobo: The PSP version has the potential make me actively love taking the bus.

Abanana: So great looking and yet such annoying gameplay choices... if they only had chosen to make the timer optional, it would be a great game.

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 11 February 2009 04:27 (ten years ago) link

#40: No More Heroes (Wii) – 15 points – 2 votes
Official game site

John Justin: Fifty percent of this game is completely awful but the brilliance and bizarreness of the other half still put it in my top five. On the plus side, the driving is so transparently crappy that it only took about five minutes to realize that there was zero reason to devote any effort to making it do anything useful.

Mitch Krpata: The rudest and most joyful game of 2008, No More Heroes gleefully embraced all the symbols and tropes of almost three decades of gaming. NMH doesn't necessarily strike me as a game of the year contender, but it's an important breakthrough precisely because it doesn't need to be judged along the traditional review axes. In fact, on the Metacritic page is this excerpt from the IGN review: "’s a pain to trek through, and a painfully low-tech visual offering. Pop-in is everywhere, control is irritating at best, and the frame rate is all over the charts. It’s an absolute mess." It's not often I feel justified in saying something like this, but it's hard to imagine a reviewer so completely missing the point. That's like bitching about a movie being shot in black and white after 1950. The look of this game was a choice. No More Heroes is a game with things on its mind, not least of which is its own identity. I feel richer for having played it. And, frankly, I'm just glad I finally got to play a game that let me use the word 'pastiche' without having to strain for it.

Garrett Martin : Yes, it is awesome, though kind of embarrassing to play when the wife is in earshot. I'm glad to see that Japanese inscrutability being applied to something that isn't sci-fi, an RPG or mind-shatteringly "cute".

Creeztophair : The ending is wonderfully delightful, the characters all have their own unique style and all the levels are pretty neat but the combat is mostly the same throughout the game.
Still a shitload of fun and a must purchase if you own a Wii.

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 11 February 2009 04:34 (ten years ago) link

#40: REZ HD (XBLA) - 15 points – 2 votes
Official game site

Brilliam: By the fifth level ('Fear'), I am so enrapt that I forget I'm a sack of meat on a chair staring at a glowing picture frame. I forget everything, really. I just listen to some dorky rave song and react to pictures and grin like an idiot. If you doubted this game's quality, check it out anyway. It costs little and doesn't take long. Turn the lights off and sit close to the screen. You won't find better immersion for a while.

'Oh my GOD! This game rocks! Here, you play.' I handed him the controller but you'd better believe I kept that vibrator right there in my lap.

John Justin: Tons of fun, zero replayability... kind of zero real playability at all in some ways. But I liked it.

Ste: So this is Panzer Dragoon with clever graphics/music interaction. It was fun for a short while, I guess; I just can't believe I paid twenty quid for it.

Jeff LeVine: The leaderboards and stuff help make it more addicting; I know I played a lot of score attack trying to top my brother. Each level is better than the the one before and the last level is way better than everything that came before. Make sure to play through to that final level!

Tracer Hand: Holy shit. Between this and Fahrenheit it's like I've now finally played the two games I've always wanted to play without even realizing they existed before. One is all sensation. The other, all angst. Both are fairly easy! Perfect!

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 11 February 2009 04:40 (ten years ago) link

39: Prince of Persia (PS3) – 17 points – 2 votes
Official game site

Jamescobo: Who gives a shit how easy it is? Have you seen how gorgeous this game is? Don't you want to see as much of it as possible? Thank God it's easy!

Iroquois Pliskin: Think of it as 'Parappa the Rapper meets Aquanaut's Holiday' and you're getting in the right frame of mind to appreciate what it's trying to accomplish. The series' trademark acrobatic platforming has been reimagined as an exercise in rhythm-based gameplay: you hit various buttons with correct timing to transition from wallruns to bar swings to longjumps. By eliminating death from the scenario (your magical companion swoops in every time you fall into an abyss and cheerfully deposits you on the last bit of stable ground you touched), the game encourages you to traverse the game-world without stopping to think about your next move. And this is how Prince of Persia goads the player into pursuing its core experience: falling into a rhythm, sight-reading your path on the fly and losing yourself in the simple joys of motion. The legibility of the environments (there's always clear visual cues-- scratched-out patches on the wall, woodlined crevices, blocky hooks-- that indicate the right course through the world) removes the 'puzzle' from 'puzzle-platforming', but your compensation is the fact that the world itself is a shimmering, colorful treasure. It's the closest approximation of an inhabitable painting yet seen in video games, and over the eight hours it took me to complete the game its relentless beauty never wore on me. It's a world that exists to be seen, not beaten. Bits of rhythm-based combat and simple lever-pulling puzzles interrupt the platforming at points, and while both are diverting, these elements seem to exist in order to punctuate the platforming segments rather than compel in their own right.

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 11 February 2009 04:51 (ten years ago) link

my comment listed for Pixeljunk Monsters was actually for Pixeljunk Eden.

abanana, Wednesday, 11 February 2009 04:53 (ten years ago) link

Ah. Apologies.

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 11 February 2009 05:01 (ten years ago) link

38: Castle Crashers (XBLA) – 19 – 2
Official game site

Polyphonic: I don't have a lot to say about this game, other than the fact that it is a shitload of fun, and I will buy anything The Behemoth puts own from here on.

Iroquois Pliskin: The widespread abuse of the word 'awesome' has deprived me of the one word meet to describe Castle Crashers. Here's the deal: Castle Crashers is awesome. Not 'this ice cream is really tasty' awesome, awesome awesome. Hitler's-head-exploding-into-pieces-at-the-end-of-Bionic-Commando-awesome. Ninja-Turtles-when-you're-nine awesome. I could go on and on about all the small details the game gets right, how viciously splendid the animation is, etc., but this game just obviates the need for critical analysis. Go buy it. Buy the trial version if you must, but you're lying to yourself if you think you're going to be able to restrain your desire for this game after a level.

Forksclovetofu: I had really high hopes and had a ball until I hit a sticking place of constant grind that turned me off in the worst way. Cutesy and fun reiteration of Gauntlet that I could recommend unreservedly... if only the multiplayer had worked!

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 11 February 2009 05:02 (ten years ago) link

More tomorrow.

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 11 February 2009 05:04 (ten years ago) link

looking forward to it! i should have divvied up my points better.. I gave all mine to fallout 3 and bet it ranks #1. maybe you can post a funny nude pic with that one :/

CaptainLorax, Wednesday, 11 February 2009 05:16 (ten years ago) link

S1ocki: It seemed pretty fun and looked nice but I sensed right away that it would have the exact same fun value as any other web-based Desktop Tower Defense game, i.e. addictive for a few hours then impossibly hard and I'll never want to look at it again.

I WAS SO WRONG. i think i've played more hours on this fucking ridiculously hard and INSANELY addictive game than any other game this year

s1ocki, Wednesday, 11 February 2009 05:51 (ten years ago) link

Oh man new job meant I have avoided ILX for a while, SO GLAD TO COME BACK AND GET TO READ LIKE 20 OF THESE. (Will M.), Wednesday, 11 February 2009 16:20 (ten years ago) link

if only the multiplayer had worked!

Works perfectly for me, fwiw.

Your heartbeat soun like sasquatch feet (polyphonic), Wednesday, 11 February 2009 16:59 (ten years ago) link

hey forks, i think your spellchecker is auto-correcting my last name to the wrong spelling. i dont really care, but figured id mention it in case you did.

From Rax to Rich's (jjjusten), Wednesday, 11 February 2009 17:15 (ten years ago) link

Yeah, I'll keep an eye on that.
I haven't been able to play a multiplayer castle crashers game since I got it; supposedly the patch fixed that problem, but I'm kinda over it now.

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 11 February 2009 17:41 (ten years ago) link

i care

s1ocki, Wednesday, 11 February 2009 17:45 (ten years ago) link

hey look it is officially tomorrow on ILX

From Rax to Rich's (jjjusten), Thursday, 12 February 2009 00:31 (ten years ago) link

HINT HINT (just kidding dude)

From Rax to Rich's (jjjusten), Thursday, 12 February 2009 00:31 (ten years ago) link

too obsessed with retro gaming challenge to post now; stay tuned!

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 12 February 2009 05:31 (ten years ago) link

Two way tie for #36.

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Friday, 13 February 2009 03:51 (ten years ago) link

36: NBA 2K9 (PS3) – 20 points – 2 votes
Official game site

Jeff LeVine: I can't recall a game I was convinced to buy because of trying out the demo but I can think of several I haven't bought after trying out the demo and realizing the game is shit. Most recently NBA 2K9.

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Friday, 13 February 2009 03:54 (ten years ago) link

36: Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia (DS) – 20 -2
Official game site

Forksclovetofu: It’s a solid and enjoyable Castlevania romp that would be noteworthy any year but a lot of my love for this game comes from the fact that it was the sole thing I had to play when I was in the hospital for two days. Some of those bosses are frustrating enough that you HAVE to be stuck someplace with nothing else to do. Two more hours in the room and I woulda beat Dracula; as it is, I may never see the ending. Still as satisfying as gaming gets.

Castlevania Name Generator

Cozwn: Castlevania: OoE is the best nds castlevania imo

Abanana: The post-game extras look pretty weak compared to the last few CVs, so I might put it down for a while… but the "second quest" (post-fake endboss) in this CV was the best yet.

Nhex: I'm really surprised that Castlevania showed up so highly on the Best DS game poll! Not that I doubt it's great, but being the third DS title in the series it seemed overshadowed by many other games this year.

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Friday, 13 February 2009 03:55 (ten years ago) link

35: Saint’s Row 2 (360/PS3) – 22 – 2
Official game site

Antexit: The crappy graphics engine looks decripit after GTA IV but this is a way more fun place to just be in. I turn it on to fuck around and play side missions for a half-hour, which I never do with GTA IV. It's not quite as mean as the first one just because it's SO RETARDEDLY SILLY. You’ll be rescuing your friend in the middle of a trial and when you start to kill the security guards, the judge rushes out with a pump-action shotgun. There’s ‘cop missions’ where you’re told ‘These factory workers are protesting unsafe working conditions! Take this chainsaw and go kill them!’

Webinar: It’s quite a nasty and hateful game and it has less charm or beauty than GTA IV but there is LOADS to do and see in this game; lots of unlockables spread out really evenly, so there’s a nice feeling of progression. Unfortunately the engine looks the same as the prior game and it is creaky as all hell, seriously last gen and buggy. Worst of all are the game crashes, which come randomly and often; I've had six in twenty hours of play. I find it so hard to recommend this game because it's just flat out broken. I've had players disappear, cars disappear, people and cars fall out of the sky, you name it... but despite all this it is very addictive and very fun and very recommended!

Stevie: I always felt Saints Row felt like playing with crappy action figures that weren't even as well painted, detailed or articulated as GI Joes. SR 1 actually bummed me out when I played it; it seemed nasty in a way that GTA rarely deigned to be. I missed whatever surface morality lingered in the game; in Saint's Row, your character seemed like one of the NPCs in a GTA game that you were suggested to find faintly reprehensible.

Polyphonic: It's really weird to hear people complaining about this game's morality. I can't tell you how many times I've murdered some poor random stranger in GTA in the most heartless, evil way. What makes this any worse?
In Saint’s Row 2, I made an obese Latina protagonist, dressed her in granny panties and an ill-fitting bra and turned on a lot of cheats. I made it so that it rained people then turned on the cheat that made bodies ascend to heaven once they died, so what you get is a continuous hail of people splatting to the ground and then immediately rising back up into the sky. This game is bizarre, cheaply made and hilarious.

Euler: Fucking awesome! The missions are actually fun instead of as gritty and difficult as GTA IV. So far (and I'm just a few hours in) it has been hard to die… unlike in GTA IV where I have to try the same boring mission twenty times cause I keep getting killed.

Interactive Menu

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Friday, 13 February 2009 04:30 (ten years ago) link

34: Wii Fit (Wii) – 24 – 3
Official game site

Tombot: Apparently while playing Wii Fit on my machine you get to observe Ned Raggett doing step aerobics and stuff in the background. This is reportedly hilarious to no end.

Abbott: I went in a video game store this weekend and clerk dude was all exasperated. Everyone asking about Wii Fit, and he'd say, It's NOT OUT here yet. It's only available in Japan! and they'd say, I'll just get it online. Like five people in the fifteen minutes I was there. You won't be able to read any of it! he shouted at one as they walked out the door.

Forksclovetofu: I used to be a gym rat myself back in the day and based on what I know about the basics of the exercise, it's all pretty solid stuff. Admittedly, you could do the same stuff with a trainer and a block of wood, but that's way more expensive and presumably less fun. The strength exercises are all about doing shit slooooooooooooooooooowly, so you're jackknifing six times in about a minute. I think a half hour of this daily, in conjunction with paying a bit more attention to your diet and a three-time-a-week sport/gym visit/heavy jog, would make a pretty serious change in your body. I just wish they’d give you a free exercise option! Stupid menu stuff is insanely boring.

Results 1 - 10 of about 2,050 for 'wii fit diary'

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Friday, 13 February 2009 04:46 (ten years ago) link

more soon!

This is a serious inquiry and there may be reprecussions (forksclovetofu), Friday, 13 February 2009 04:49 (ten years ago) link

saints row 2 is pretty fun. less polished and serious as the last gta, but has served as a solid break from fps for me.

bnw, Friday, 13 February 2009 06:00 (ten years ago) link

kiu forks, great work...

i got saints row 2 over xmas... its broken as hell, v buggy, but yeah, i can't dewny it, lots of fun. not managed to get online to work yet, and still prefer GTA, but kudos for the grubby fun.

Bonkers candy, the Nabisco candy (stevie), Friday, 13 February 2009 08:30 (ten years ago) link

#33: Bioshock (PS3) – 25 points – 1 vote
Official game site

Antexit: I think I'm about halfway through now. This game gets hella difficult around the midway point. The stealth stuff drives me bananas and there's a little too many retrieval-style missions, but this game is fascinating and super fun and crazy imaginative and is the best-looking and best-sounding game I've ever seen.

Melton Mowbray: Cor, this game is good. Last night, whilst playing it I thought "Fuck, this game is boring. I feel like I've been playing it for hours." Turned it off and went to bed only to find it was 5:30am. I'd been playing it all night!

I also wonder how much better the graphics would’ve been had they not been compressed to fit on a DVD.

Matt D: Bioshock is the first game that lets me combine the power of fire and bees into flaming bees. This is totally worth the price of admission on its own, especially when the application of said flaming bees makes the enemies scream "Fire AND Bees? That's just not FAIR!"

Jeff Le Vine: I feel like this was an over-rated, but very solid game. It's a bit of a drag that the game has no replayability and no multiplayer. It would have been great fun if after beating the game solo you could play a powered-up co-op campaign in the same world, just for laughs. I also felt like there were just too many hacking mini-games (when I got the achievement for beating fifty of those I felt sick) and too many hunt and fetch elements to the game. The story is also a bit sparse. Still, it was fairly addictive and certainly an appealing world to stomp around in for five days.

super smash was robbed imo

Jewish Lager (k3vin k.), Sunday, 15 February 2009 04:43 (ten years ago) link


#31: Advance Wars: Days of Ruin (DS) – 25 points – 2 votes
Official game site

CraigG: I spent a HUGE chunk of the start of the year playing this while taking the train back and forth between Newcastle and Edinburgh. I think they got the balance just right in this one; it's much less complicated compared to the last Advance Wars game.

Will M: This game isn't as 'dark' or 'serious' as people are playing up; some of the art is a bit more grown-up but it still has the same silly sense of humor underneath the whole post-apocalyptic setting. Some of the added units really piss me off, like the Anti-Tank which is indirect (like artillery) but can counter if attacked directly. Also, nothing does good damage to it, but it ruins EVERYTHING. Pretty much the only solution is bombers.

Abanana: Bikes are great, but I haven't used the anti-tank much yet. Flares make fog-of-war stages much less luck-based. I beat the campaign although I had to look at a walkthrough for the last mission (it's simpler than it seems, although you still need some luck). Anti-tanks are weak against infantry (BIKES). Still, they're a lot better than small tanks, which cost around the same amount.

Creeztophair: Dual Strike was much better than this.

#30: PixelJunkEden (PSN) – 25 points – 3 votes
Official game site

Polyphonic: It's very relaxing!

JeffLevine: A perfect combination of music and art.

Abanana: So great looking and yet such annoying gameplay choices... if they only had chosen to make the timer optional, it would be a great game.

Black Iron Prison: Please rename to 'crack'.

Jeff Le Vine: It kind of reminds me of Peggle for stoners.

S1ocki: It is a very good game; pretty hypnotic.

And they have since made the timer optional.

abanana, Sunday, 15 February 2009 06:37 (ten years ago) link

ok so that first picture for bioshock is awesome.

From Rax to Rich's (jjjusten), Sunday, 15 February 2009 06:45 (ten years ago) link

seriously... i didnt know it was based on a real thing

s1ocki, Sunday, 15 February 2009 07:02 (ten years ago) link

i am never flying again

From Rax to Rich's (jjjusten), Sunday, 15 February 2009 07:03 (ten years ago) link

This poll is making me realize I should buy more DS games.

EZ Snappin, Sunday, 15 February 2009 21:56 (ten years ago) link

#28: Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots (PS3) – 27 points – 3 votes
Official game site

Roberto Spiralli: Does anyone actually want to sit through a ninety minute cut scene? Nine minutes would be too much for me.

Mr. Raif: There is no doubt it's an incredible game, but if you're going to have cutscenes this long then the balance with the gameplay needs to be right. The opening was incredible, though; Otacon got mad at me for trying to take on the Gekko, LOL. I did the hold up and crotch grab on one of the super female soldiers then she CQC'd my ass. The little Snatcher bot is awesome.

Burt Stanton: Games like MGS4 are one reason I can't play new videogames ... they're waaayyyyyyyy too involved now. It's like you have to dedicate your life to these things. Just let me jump in and kill some shit while I'm waiting for my Boboli pizza to cook.

Jeff Le Vine: It's sort of more of a tv mini-series than a game but the cutscenes really are pretty impressive. So far I don't mind that over half the time I'm playing I don't need to even hold the controller. I do like the actual game play so far; sneaking works pretty good, shooting is fine and switching in and out of first person works well. The graphics are really nice. I'm about nine hours into the "game" so far; maybe only five hours of play. I tried out the online component for about an hour,played some deathmatch, team deathmatch and a sneaking game... it's terrible. Probably the worst multiplayer game I've ever tried. How do you create a shooting game where the shooting is so awful?

Adam: I can't tell if Hideo Kojima is the most brilliant man alive or just insane and drunk on his own power. One of the MGS4 reviews i read said he has collected every pokemon in every Pokemon game. God, there is a monster cutscene on right now. I have already gone to the bathroom, gotten something to eat, eaten it, gotten caught up on this thread and Drebin is still running his fucking mouth.

Kingfish: Otacon now looks like Bono, sans bloat.

Matt D: I don't want to go into details for fear of spoilers, but wow; possibly best wrap-up ending for the series and the character of Solid Snake possible. It really exceeded my expectations.

Cankles: I can't believe some of you people defend this shit! Consistently! Fuck you! FUCK YOU!!!!

Whoops, sorry: two way tie for #28:

#28: The World Ends With You (DS) – 27 points – 3 votes
Official game site

Brilliam: This title is, for lack of a better term, transcendental. It transcends its publisher, Square Enix, by existing as a bold counterpoint to their inaccessible, tradition-laden, committee-made lineup of sure-sale RPGs. It transcends any sort of "action" or "RPG" or "action RPG" genre definition by doing both things better than any of their permutations. It even transcends what could have been a disastrously stupid setting ('extreme'-looking teens trapped in an 'extreme' version of a metropolis's shopping district) by handling it (with as much grace as can be expected from a handheld videogame) maturely. I was enthralled in spite of the developer and the setting and the genre and whatever else stood in the way of fun.

Nhex: I love it! Great battle system, chock full of innovative ideas!

Jamescobo: it's more or less an RPG except for the crazy battle system and the most insane ability customization scheme I've seen in a minute and some of the most stylized visuals since Jet Grind Radio. The only caveat is that the learning curve is steeper than a shitting bitch, especially with regards to the battle system which encourages you to use both the stylus and regular controls SIMULTANEOUSLY?!?!

Jibe: It's... weird. I'm not really enjoying it while I'm playing, but I keep coming back. The characters are really really annoying; fuck a silent Neku who hates everyone.

Circa1916: I really did not dig The World Ends With You. The art direction, storyline and armor system were all just immensely unappealing to me; the combat is a mess too. Try as I might to maintain some sort of order and finesse, it always devolves into mindlessly scratching the screen and banging on the directional pad. Bleh.

LOL, no idea why I posted that "Snake likes his energy drink" picture twice.

Three way tie for #25... this is also the last of the single vote games.
I warned you it might take awhile!

#25: Drone Tactics (DS) – 30 points – 1 vote – 1 GAME OF THE YEAR vote
Official game site

Lamp: Okay, basically everyone focuses on the fact that the story is about a pair of alien bugs that ask two intrepid and super-lame Japanese kids to help them battle a colony of evil bugs for control of their planet which is populated by similar bugs to our world except that THOSE bugs have cannons and guns and metal carapaces and OUR bugs are just bugs and never propose galactic warfare at all, at least not in my experience. My argument is that worrying about things like plot and character in a SRPG is basically retarded on the same level that the characters in this game appear to be. Like any great strategy game, Drone Tactics has a simple premise that belies a lot of flexibility and complexity. There are a wide variety of units and the game offers tremendous levels of customization. Any map can be replayed with a different army for an entirely new challenge and the game allows the player to choose how easy or difficult the battles should be.

And if none of that seems cool, just think about the giant mecha insects machine-gunning each other.

#25: Pro Evolution Soccer 08 (Wii) – 30 points – 1 vote – 1 GAME OF THE YEAR vote
Official game site

Jim: 2008 was absolute bullshit and the online play on the 360 was a laggy nightmare. I bought it and played it for about five hours then threw it in a drawer and went back to PES '06.

Roberto Spiralli: The current PES is some bullshit; it's simply stopped being fun. There was a logic to the previous versions, from PES3 onwards, that was compromised in PES6 and killed off in 2008. Supposedly 2009 is a back to the drawing board affair, which they say about FIFA every year and which to date hasn't stopped that franchise disappearing down the shitter. PES 2009 will be 50/50 chance of rebirth or death. Meanwhile, all I want is a decent footie game to play.

Jeff LeVine: I'm skeptical that PES 2009 is going to be significantly different from 2008 or 2007. I only played 2008 on the Wii and it was fun but a little too shallow.

#25: Mother 3: Translated (GBA) – 30 points – 1 vote – 1 GAME OF THE YEAR vote – Top GBA Game
Official game site

CraigG: Possibly the best game I've played this decade, let alone this year. The story was just so strong, kept surprising and made me genuinely laugh out loud a few times. One of maybe two games out of the last three years that stopped me just using my DS on the commute and found myself playing constantly while around the house or on my lunch break at work. Sapped a good twenty four hours of my life, and I'll probably play through it again.

Cozwn: I'm at the end of the first chapter; suffice it to say the moment when you gain the Drago Fang is a bit of a downer; funny when the dad starts spazzing out tho...

Kingfish: If you haven't been convinced to try this game yet, your character saves by talking to frogs. FROGS, people! Also, the game will have toilets.

As I’ve transcribed it, the meter is subdivided into six groups of four 16th notes followed by one group of five 16th notes. In other words, it would make Dave Brubeck cry.

Abbott: Seriously, I think about Mother 3 every day. The mushroom trip level is as genuine a headfuck as a bad trip. I am really bad at the beat-based bonus hits.

Webinar: I've played through some of it today and it looks to be really well done, a real labor of love. Nintendo should get some money to these guys and get the translation released for real. Are there any logistical, political, publishing or commercial reasons why they wouldn't? The main entrenched cost in this kind of project is the translation and I imagine they would get labor for a snippet of the usual price from these online dudes if Nintendo chose to 'license' it from them.

A brief aspie word or two about the poll presentation: I'm aware that some of these games may have come out on more systems than are listed. The machines listed are those that the voters noted as having played the game on. For instance, while NBA2K9 may have come out on the 360, nobody voted for that version so it gets no mention. I'm not quite psycho enough to list each separate platform as a separate vote.

"Top Game" honors are going to the top placing game for each system (or DLC conduit) as well as the top exclusive content for each system. Though I didn't note it prior, Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII at #55 was the Top PSP game.

More tomorrow.

lol dude were u not feelin my drone tactics write-up? that was my GAME OF THE YEAR vote

Lamp, Monday, 16 February 2009 04:22 (ten years ago) link

It's right there...?

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Monday, 16 February 2009 04:31 (ten years ago) link

Try logging in anonymously; the borad is doing some weird stuff with these entries.

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Monday, 16 February 2009 04:32 (ten years ago) link

yah if i logout i can see it idk why but when im logged in most of the comments are missing e.g. mother 3 has only one and drone tactics has none

Lamp, Monday, 16 February 2009 04:43 (ten years ago) link

Asking about this on the Mod Req Forum.

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Monday, 16 February 2009 05:12 (ten years ago) link

I'm not surprised that I was the only vote for PES on Wii, but I fell in love with that game. The first time I've ever felt in a sports game that I have some control over how a play develops, not just controlling a player and hoping the AI sees the openings I see and reacts accordingly. One AI player will never run through a space to pull defenders for another AI player; with PES on Wii I can make that happen. The sense of accomplishment when I score after a series of pulls and feints is much higher for me than in traditional footie games. I have inordinately high hopes that the 2009 version - just a few weeks away! - will have fixed playing defense so that it too is a tactical chess game.

EZ Snappin, Monday, 16 February 2009 15:12 (ten years ago) link

haha i have a feeling that top ten or so are going to be like 20 votes each there's so little consensus in the bottom half

Lamp, Tuesday, 17 February 2009 20:07 (ten years ago) link

#23: Mega Man 9 (XBLA) – 30 points – 2 votes
Official game site

S1ocki: I just have the demo and I can't get past the first like ten seconds.

Cankles: Megaman sucks because Capcom made too many shitty games in the series, not cause they made them look better. This looks like a pacifier for manbabies.

Polyphonic: Playing this game made me realize how much I unwittingly missed playing the early games and even proved to their greatness to me. This is probably the hardest game I played this year and certainly the most infuriating. I can't tell you how many times I died in the exact same spot, over and over again. Very humbling. I have only defeated one boss… which is one more than many of my friends have defeated! I rated this game highly mostly because I wish this was how every publisher handled a great old property. I like the new Zelda and Mario games, but why can’t they also produce a few games that actually uphold the visual style of the originals?

The Mega Man Effect

Nhex: I’m still horrified at the irony that I need a current generation console to play this.

Jeff LeVine: I can’t get used to how stiff, fast and demanding this gameplay is. If you had played a fair lot of the earlier ones, I'd imagine your skills learned there would definitely carry over. I can see this is meant to be played and mastered in long sittings, where you just power your way in and figure out the tricks, memorize a course. My problem comes when I die three or six times in a row, say "fuck it" and turn off the system. I still haven't even gotten to a boss! I'm just focusing on the Galaxy Man level, which I hear is the easiest. I keep screwing up on those stupid claw things grabbing me and throwing me into the spikes; they’re so quick! I get happy ‘cause I avoided a couple then...

ZS: I don't the difficulty level here is a failing in either the gamer or the game so much as major shift in the difficulty of games over the past few decades. Games can still be plenty difficult, but now if you can't get past a certain spot you're likely to still benefit in some way. Maybe you get experience points or a stats boost just for trying or a hint box pops up that tells you what to do. Or you go to Gamefaqs. You know, in Bioshock if you die, the enemy retains any damage that you inflicted on it while you go back to a full health bar. Back in the day, you'd have to enter a 16 character Game Genie code to get the game to hold your hand like that.

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 04:40 (ten years ago) link

pure is awesome! just rented it. pure is right. pure fun!

s1ocki, Thursday, 19 February 2009 04:46 (ten years ago) link

Sorry, two way tie for #23:

#23: Pure (360) - 30 points – 2 votes
Official game site

John Justen: Never in a million years would I have thought that a game that made me soup up a fucking ATV would make my top ten, but somehow Pure does it. Maybe the complete unrealism of the tracks makes choosing the paint color of my handle guard more fun? I have no idea but this game has been tons and tons of pure stoopid impossible IRL standing on your handlebars fun.

Forksclovetofu: Pure is SSX on ATVs and that's not a bad thing at all. It looks gorgeous, it’s easy to pick up and play and the constant “improve your vehicle with minute details” cycle is good for hours and hours of replay value. Lots of “HEY LOOK AT THIS!” moments throughout. Terrifically shitty soundtrack though; great excuse to rip a few CD’s to the hard drive.

Euler: The Pure engine is amazing; absolutely incredible game.

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 04:47 (ten years ago) link

s1ocks, you're a mind reader!

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 04:47 (ten years ago) link

Two way tie for #21:

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 04:49 (ten years ago) link

#21: Ketsui Death Label (DS) – 30 points – 2 votes – 1 GAME OF THE YEAR vote
Official game site

Jeff Le Vine: Probably the most absurd use of the DS yet. Crazier than Bangai-O maybe. I'm loving it. A miniature miracle. Short, mini-levels that are completely fun, addicting, maddening

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 04:49 (ten years ago) link

#21: Audiosurf (PC) - 30 points – 2 votes – 1 GAME OF THE YEAR vote– Top PC Exclusive Game
Official game site

Brilliam: Someone on ILX said of Audiosurf, "if you hate this game, you probably don't like good music." Pretentious, probably a bit inaccurate but there's a seed of truth there: if you don't like Audiosurf, you're playing it wrong. I've listened to new records using this and it makes it even easier for me to absorb them on first listen because I am so intently focused on little idiosyncrasies.

Nhex: Audiosurf sets an example of what the PC platform of 2008 could be - a wonderful, independently-developed niche game with great appeal to a hardcore base while still accessible to a broad audience. It's sold purely through digital distribution at a very low price (I bought it for a mere $2.50 on sale) and uses online scoreboards and friends lists to cement the game's sense of community. How much one enjoys this game really depends on how much you're into falling block puzzlers (especially stuff like Panel de Pon or Puzzle League) and how appropriate your music collection is to 'play' to. I also love getting emails that someone across the world has beaten my score on a track.

Will M: I totally still boot this up every once in a while. I like listening to new records on it because it puts you in this great head-state halfway between DISTRACTED and PAYING ATTENTION VERY ACUTELY that's just like "Whoa, I am digging this ‘Love Is All’ record more than I thought I would…"

JimD: It's buggy as hell, the online scoreboards only work intermittently and every now and again it gives me a blank screen to play on, but still addictive. It's just fast and smooth and pretty and fun trying it out with different songs to see what effects they have on the tracks. Fantastic idea! Addictiveness +10!

Dom Passantino: ‘Beating Heart Baby’ by Head Automatica becomes the best song ever when played on this.

Melton Mowbray: Really enjoying this at the moment. Everyone keeps watching me play, which is a good sign because no one likes to watch me play computer games.

Jeff LeVine: I'd say it's worth ten bucks. Works great with the 360 controller. I tried out all the different sound effects, then tried it with none - which I like the most, I guess - there's a little controller vibration every time you hit a brick, which is actually a better indicator than the built in sound effects - and doesn't distract from listening to the music as much. Erik Satie was a very good suggestion.

Trayce: OMG YES AUTECHRE. Autechre is AWESOME on this thing. So is really heavy shit like Meshuggah, and 65dos. Give it a try.

Forksclovetofu: Can someone please explain why this isn’t on XBLA yet?

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 04:56 (ten years ago) link

#20: Soul Calibur IV (360) – 30 points – 3 votes
Official game site

Mordy: Sometimes it's fun to beat the shit out of your friends. Over and over and over again.

No, I'm fronting. I suck at this game.

Jeff Le Vine: Can I have the version without the Star Wars characters, please? I don't know why this is turning me off exactly, but it is.

Polyphonic: While I'm tempted to place the criminally underrated Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe on my list instead, it can't match the glory of this game. Nothing much has changed here ... they just took a great game and made it better and prettier.

Lamp: Looks incredible, plays incredible and offers on-line play and a ‘create fighter’ option. Such a dope fucking game. If u want 2 know more, I recommend you go find the YouTube where some fat British beardo takes two-and-half minutes to open the shrink-wrap on his copy of the game (Ed. Note: couldn’t find this…?). Sieg is #1 A+++ character for all time; dude's ring outs are the key to a bunch of the challenges.

HI DERE: The create-your-own-character mode is awesome because it gives me the ability to play a Talim-style character without having to actually play as a 10-year-old girl. Also the story mode is great, largely because I had huge chunks of the mythology totally wrong (I thought Ivy was evil...?) but also because of the awesome Siegfried/Nightmare endings. The new characters are kind of bizarre but cool (although too many are yelpy) and Darth Vader actually plays pretty well. I just started ascending the tower and it's very reminiscent of the awesome quest mode in SCII, which means I like it a lot. It's a tiny bit aggravating that you have no idea what conditions will unlock the unlockables until you've met them, though.

Will M: I think every single Soul Calibur character is more interesting than every single Star Wars character and that's saying something.

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 05:06 (ten years ago) link

#19: Yakuza 2 (PS2) – 30 points – 3 votes – 1 GAME OF THE YEAR vote – TOP PS2 GAME
Official game site

Mitch Krpata: The most tragically overlooked game of the year. Great story, great action, and some truly inspired setpieces. Just brilliant. It's not a hit, of course. I'm not sure most people even realized it had been released in this. The original Yakuza was superb -- even made my top 10 for 2006 -- and sank like a stone in the marketplace. Maybe better marketing would have helped, or maybe the inherent problems in localizing such a culturally specific game put Yakuza behind the eight-ball from the start, but by the time Sega decided to release the sequel stateside, they hadn't even bothered recording an English-language track. They may as well have affixed stickers to the front of each copy saying, "Even we know you're not gonna buy this."

Jamescobo: It really is astounding how much ass Yakuza 2 kicks; even the (entirely optional) introductory catch-up on the previous game's (invigoratingly unobjectionable) plot keeps interrupting itself to offer you another opportunity to skip straight to the part where you start wrecking shop. Within fifteen minutes into the game, you're walloping people with bicycles. Within half an hour, you suddenly realize how fast this game is loading, probably because you're jumping into any and every battle you can find. Within an hour, you no longer give a shit about the concessions it makes to the now-busted PS2 architecture; the fact that the elements with which you can actually interact are so glaringly obvious becomes completely irrelevant the first time you see an abnormally huge orange traffic cone, think "Damn, that's one big-ass cone," pick it up in order to flatten someone with it, and notice it's called "Huge Cone". It's not a case of a game not taking itself seriously, either; it's a case of a game which wants to reward you for checking stuff out. AND THE WHOLE THING IS LIKE THAT; it gives and it gives and it gives, even when more than a little is sufficient (QED the Mahjongg mini-game with its twelve pages of in-game instructions). The combat system, while not necessarily deep, is as fun to master as anything since the last Mario & Luigi game thanks in large part to the HEAT moves - invariably awesome QTE super moves which change based on your environment and/or weapon (crushing some punk's skull with a Huge Cone, for instance). The game's plot is amazingly nonretarded; I still can't believe how rarely I check my email during a cutscene. And as if all that weren't enough, the game’s (or at least the translator's) humor seems to actually be legitimately, intentionally funny. And don't even get me started about the peacock.

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 05:11 (ten years ago) link

We're gettin' there! Stay tuned!

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 05:11 (ten years ago) link

so i should play yakuza huh?

Lamp, Thursday, 19 February 2009 06:18 (ten years ago) link

jamescobo I like ur style

cozwn, Thursday, 19 February 2009 07:11 (ten years ago) link

ypu are O T M

cozwn, Thursday, 19 February 2009 07:11 (ten years ago) link

d'aw shux~

and yes, play Yakuza! I just lost all my game saves when I put a new HD in my PS3 and it's the only game I'm looking forward to replaying.

jamescobo, Thursday, 19 February 2009 08:00 (ten years ago) link

yakuza 3 demo is out on the JPN PSN btw, jus sayin

cozwn, Thursday, 19 February 2009 08:10 (ten years ago) link

I really found the first 30 minutes of Yakuza 1 boring, and never went back.

Your heartbeat soun like sasquatch feet (polyphonic), Thursday, 19 February 2009 08:45 (ten years ago) link

i really am alone in finding soulcalibur4 really disappointing right? like SC2 is my second-or-third favourite game ever, this i wouldn't even really play.

Gravel Puzzleworth, Thursday, 19 February 2009 11:11 (ten years ago) link

I know this is not the time to say this, but you're doing a great job with this poll, Forks. I only have a few (Wii, DS and PC) of the systems that these games are coming out on, so it's cool to catch up with what was going on with the rest of the consoles this year.

I shall always respect my elders (Z S), Thursday, 19 February 2009 15:54 (ten years ago) link

s1ocks, you're a mind reader!

― Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, February 19, 2009 4:47 AM (11 hours ago) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink

that's bizarre forks - i coulda swore the pure entry was already there when i posted it! maybe i AM!!

s1ocki, Thursday, 19 February 2009 16:14 (ten years ago) link

Thanks ZS; I'm in the same boat you are!

S1ocks I was joshin' ya; I deleted the Pure to do some editing and then threw it back up; your comment came in the interim.

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 19:58 (ten years ago) link

Is Pure the game different at all from Pure the demo? I found the demo fun but unremarkable.

Your heartbeat soun like sasquatch feet (polyphonic), Thursday, 19 February 2009 20:19 (ten years ago) link

not really that different from what i recall. adds a "soup up your vehicle" thing that is remarkably deep but im not going to lie to you, nobody is playing the game for the four wheeler construction sim. lots of the other tracks are pretty stunning, but i thought the demo track was pretty sweet too.

From Rax to Rich's (jjjusten), Thursday, 19 February 2009 20:30 (ten years ago) link

I think what that game nails is the great matrix-y moments of weightlessness and racing to finish the trick madness that leads as often as not to massive wipeouts. Sure, it's ridic pretty; but the gameplay felt really clean and engaging to me. Again, I'll forward the tired analogy; at it's best, Pure felt like an SSX sequel to me.

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 21:36 (ten years ago) link

#18: GRID (PS3) – 30 points – 4 votes – 1 GAME OF THE YEAR vote
Official game site

Ledge: ***LOVE*** drifting and am pretty decent at it; the muscle car stuff and road races in general are great (although often pretty damn tough). I don't dig and am bad at the proper racetrack events. The Le Mans race is my worst nightmare.

Cozwyn: This game is heaps of fun and gorgeous. The tracks are great, the cars all feel different, there’s lots of fun modes and a deep enough career system for an arcade racer. Everything feels very fast; heaps of fun

Ste: I'm so psychologically pissed sometimes when it comes to this game; as soon as I get into first place, I just start sweating madly and lose concentration, followed by usually performing the most horrendous accident ever. I thought it was great, a lot more fun than any other racing game I’ve tried on the PS3.
I love just doing that rewind shit on my crashes, it's so surreal. The radio commentary is fantastic and it's great how they tell you who is doing what on a race, sometimes in a tone like you're supposed to know who the hell they are. "Donny Taylor just span out". OH NO NOT DONNY!

Jeff Le Vine: I see the game has made a lot of top ten lists, so obviously people liked it, but I probably hated this like no other I played this year - which is weird, because I really enjoy DiRT. Even with a joystick I just couldn't get used to the slippery way the vehicles handle and bounced off things. It hit a weird middle ground, not arcade enough and not sim enough. I also hated the nickname thing. It just seems to me that there are so many other better driving game options out there right now, even on a console.
I just threw this game in the garbage. Feeling a lot better now :)

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 22:03 (ten years ago) link

#17: Far Cry 2 (PS3) – 31 points – 3 votes
Official game site

Iroquois Pliskin: Such a subtle game, both in terms of its environmental charms and its unsettling narrative. Beyond the generally awe-inspiring attention to graphical detail manifest in the flora and fauna and climate of Leboa-Sako, Clint Hocking’s Africa-set magnum opus abounds in the small touches that communicate an authentic sense of place: patches of leaf-filtered sun on the floor of your safe house, bugs on your windshield, the golden luster of the savanna grass at sunset. And having to look down at your map while driving so uncannily replicated the hazards of real-life vehicular navigation that you forgave the frequent mishaps it caused.

Developer-Reviewer discussion

Mitch Krpata: Sober, thoughtful, and mature -- three words we don't usually associate with a first-person shooter. Because its game world is so big, Far Cry 2 can seem slow-paced. You'll cross the map to accept a mission and then have to turn around and go back to accomplish it. As smaller firefights erupt along the roadways and at guard shacks and enemy safe houses, a simple trip might take half an hour or more. The sparsity of checkpoints means that the death of your character can erase significant progress. Yet the game casts a spell as you go deeper. Detours become ever more alluring. And if you lose your bearings in the wilds of Africa, well, that's the point.

Jeff LeVine: I agree it has problems but what sandbox game doesn't? On the plus side, the world created is a pretty impressive environment to wander around in. You can go by foot through miles and miles of bush, ride various cars and take boats around. I like the pacing. It seems a little slower, a little more casual than the average sandbox. The various mission scenarios are fun to fight your way through. The game just feels like a ‘B’ though and in a season this packed with ‘A’ games, I could understand why people would skip it for now.

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 22:17 (ten years ago) link

#16: Civilization: Revolution (PS3/360/DS) – 37 points – 5 votes
Official game site

Meg Busset: I've had Civ: Rev for about four weeks and am really enjoying it. Playing on King level at the moment but might shift up to Emperor and see how that goes. Some of the Civilizations are so superior to the others it's embarrassing. Take the Romans; once you get going on building wonders there's no stopping the culture victory. Only criticism so far is that archers are such a good defensive unit that it seems pointless going to war in the early stages of the game. I just defend until I get combustion then crank out tank armies and twat everyone.

MPx4A: I would prefer to just be able to carry on after winning to see how things pan out. I felt a bit bad for nuking Delhi. I think nukes fuck up the surrounding area and damage your culture rating but I never really got to face the consequences because I won the next turn… even though Gandhi was still giving me all this "I'm taking that pile of mutant-infested rubble back real soon, son" type shit. It is kind of stupid that you click stats and all you get is reverse ordered descriptions of milestones, interspersed with painfully slow scrolling credits and repeated messages about how you beat the game. Basically, once you have one infantry army with a couple of upgrades then no amount of tanks, artillery or bombers will shift your capital city but you have to hope you get lucky with the great people and the cash rolling in. I got within three turns of the World Bank when the Greeks, who invented gayness, built the fuckin’ UN. This game can be kind of relaxing but the way the computer constantly declares war in really snide terms (even when you're just off being polite and cultural in some remote corner of the world) subtly reminds you that people are dicks, all the time. Even the sim ones.

Roberto Spiralli: It's a lot of fun and very intuitive and easy to play but they went a little too far with the console oversimplification. Not having unhappy citizens or hunger improves the flow of the game but takes the 'management' element out of city management somewhat. It is really REALLY fucking easy playing versus the computer. I think this will have close to zero one player replay value after about a week, though I do think it could be top fun on multiplayer. I need to convince my two IRL Civ-playing friends to trade in their 360s and join me on a PS3.
EA puts a regular single player vs CPU game up on the network each week and you play it like you would a regular game. If you beat it, your score gets compared with the rest of the world or region or whatever. I guess they realized that coordinating a three hour block of multiplayer time between pals might be tough for a lot of people so they went with a new approach.

Kingfish: Civ on a console just seems odd, maybe just because of the lack of a mouse. I played this game forever before I finally went ahead and tried to nuke something. So hardwired against doing so.

Euler: I love this game. I just won on Emperor for the first time and it was definitely way more challenging than king. I wish the endgame were longer so I could benefit from the late-game techs and wonders more but some of the scenarios help with that (e.g. Beta Centauri).

DG: Totally pwn3d Alpha Centauri yesterday, which means I'm on track to have my first go on Civ: Rev sometime around 2017.

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 19 February 2009 22:37 (ten years ago) link

HA my GRID comment makes me sound like a dick. "I like what I'm good at and hate what I'm shit at!". Added Audiosurf and Far Cry 2 to list of shit I wanna check out 4 real. And gotta say, sterling work, Forks - am actually enjoying the slow pace here, proper good old-fashioned delayed gratification.

ledge, Thursday, 19 February 2009 22:59 (ten years ago) link

oi who is writing some of these comments? like far cry specifically? cos they make it sound v intersting when i thought that nobody liked that game!

goole, Thursday, 19 February 2009 23:05 (ten years ago) link

So CivRev on the DS is basically advance wars?

thomp, Friday, 20 February 2009 01:07 (ten years ago) link

oi who is writing some of these comments? like far cry specifically

Jeff's a regular poster on ILG, Mitch Krpata writes about games for the Boston Phoenix, Paste and his blog insult swordfighting, iroquois pliskin is the nom de plume of the guy who does versus clu clu land. They all voted in the poll.

Also, the game will have toilets. (forksclovetofu), Friday, 20 February 2009 01:32 (ten years ago) link

I love Insult Swordfighting.

Mordy, Friday, 20 February 2009 02:04 (ten years ago) link


vaginary & western (jjjusten), Monday, 23 February 2009 16:57 (ten years ago) link

lol SFIV?

this is the meme of evan and 4chan (Lamp), Monday, 23 February 2009 16:58 (ten years ago) link

ok i have acquired a copy of civ/rev and it is totally not basically advance wars, 100% wrong there

thomp, Monday, 23 February 2009 18:48 (ten years ago) link

kind of regretting not putting Pure in my #1 spot. played it again this weekend for a while and it is GOLDEN. also digging the way it autopopulates the bottom of your screen with best laps from people on your friends list before each event, sort of the statsgeekery equivalent of a ghost to compete against.

vaginary & western (jjjusten), Tuesday, 24 February 2009 00:48 (ten years ago) link

that said, forks 1000% OTM re: terrrrrrrible soundtrack, really stunningly dreadful.

vaginary & western (jjjusten), Tuesday, 24 February 2009 00:51 (ten years ago) link

yeah I think I voted Pure #2, and also played this weekend again and loved it. Freestyle mode is way more fun than I'd expect, esp. in multi. It's a pity there are so few people on multi on xbla; I play with my brother weekly and we've yet to find anyone else on the server to play with.

Euler, Tuesday, 24 February 2009 02:10 (ten years ago) link

Forks, this is incredible. Great round up. Thanks very much.

hyggeligt, Tuesday, 24 February 2009 08:37 (ten years ago) link

Before we finally crack the top fifteen, it's time to pause for a page from the 'can't-please-everyone-all-the-time' file. When I asked people to submit their votes, I also asked them to name their "most disappointing" game of the year. This wording was intentionally vague; I didn't necessarily want to hear what folks thought the WORST game of the year was, I wanted to see what got under their skin and annoyed them. Unsurprisingly, virtually all the games mentioned as most disappointing also made the countdown. Here's a selection of responses to our hall of shame:

Brilliam: Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns Of The Patriots
I loved MGS, MGS2, and MGS3... in that order. What made them great was that they pushed the definition of player and console and game to the absolute limit. Not only does MGS4 fail to do this in the same way, it's also got one of the most irritatingly preposterous scripts in the history of script…and not in a way that's amusing, like MGS1 and 2. Definitely one of the most interesting games I played and beat this year, but hardly one of the top 20.

Edgertor: Fable II
Though it was my first real RPG, Fable II ended up giving me the feeling I’d wasted my time. The 'relationships' you have are stupid and superficial, the customizing dopey and the only good thing about it is that you get a dog... and (if you’re good) he gets fat and blonde after forty hours. Who wants a fat blonde dog?

Cozwyn: Grand Theft Auto IV
it braek my haert : (

Abanana: Professor Layton and The Curious Village

Forksclovetofu: Spore
Fable II captured my girlfriend’s attention, not mine. No More Heroes looked great and played poorly. GTA IV could’ve been retitled ‘Arduous FetchQuest 08’ for all the pointless running around it forced me to do. Mirror’s Edge left me cold from the demo. L4D requires gamer friends on your schedule. There were various and sundry disappointments on game systems for me this year, but nothing was so completely ‘ennnhhhh’ as the much anticipated and greatly depressing Spore. I wanted the ultimate god game and instead got to run around collecting whiskers and earlobes on a beach while avoiding giant gorillas… and that’s not even as fun as it sounds! When the best part of the game is your character creator, something’s gone wrong in Wrightland.

Mitch Krpata: Mirror's Edge
Rarely have I played a game that seemed so self-contradictory, especially one with such capacity for greatness. But it almost forced you to play it in a sub-optimal way in order to progress. I hated every second I spent with this game and it's like a six-hour game. There weren't all that many seconds to hate. Intellectually, I appreciated what Mirror's Edge was doing, and that's why I kept booting it up with a sense of optimism -- optimism that was destroyed within minutes of beginning any new play session. On a gut level, I just couldn't stand the game. I swore at it. I stared in disbelief. I came close to re-enacting the control pad stress test on more than one occasion. And lest you think it's just because I was bad at it -- and I was very bad it -- the game was designed in such a way that I couldn't help but blunder my way through it without ever having to master it. It was the worst of both worlds.

Nhex: Advance Wars: Days of Ruin
Sad because it's still the same great core game as the other excellent AW games but Nintendo went with a more serious and dark tone, removing so much of the charm and personality of the series. I can totally understand why: they did three critically acclaimed, great games that the general public didn't seem to care about, so they made an earnest attempt to broaden their reach (ironically by narrowing it to appeal to the "core" gamer, with a dystopian setting), but it doesn't quite work. It's a shame this series hasn't really been a massive, popular breakout hit - it's still very accessible.

EZSnappin: Little Big Planet
I love the idea of LBP and its community creations but the platforming is a floaty, imprecise mess. An absolutely stunning and charming and magical game that I only wish was fun to play.

Iroquois Pliskin: Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns Of The Patriots
Not only was it barely a game in the latter half, it simply lacked so much of the inspired and imaginative gameplay that made the previous games in the series such classics.

John Justen: Fable II
Where do I start? Simply put, Fable II is a good-looking, ambitious game with frustrating mechanical flaws and nearly irredeemable gameplay due to its terrible core design flaws. There is enough to like about this game that I still put it in last place on my top ten but the myriad problems make it infuriating. The "vault" mechanic is just straight up broken. If I can leap 100 feet down from a cliff, I should be able to jump off any fucking ledge I come across where I can see the ground. The last time I remember this many “find-the-sweet- spot-and-move-until-you-can-do-what-you-want” difficulties was with the old LucasArts games. Having a game built on social interaction with NPCs and then making those NPCs idiots is bullshit. Making the logos for the expressions in the quick menu incomprehensible and indistinguishable is no good. Having your character’s reactions change at the last minute so that instead of giving a thumbs up you do a bloodthirsty roar for no reason - not okay. The fact that I made more money on the first level of woodcutting than I did in the first fifty treasure chests I found is insane. Implementing a sale mechanic for the shops that makes it possible for you to sell the items you just bought back to that exact same place for a considerable profit the very next day is not an "exploit". It is bad game design and it makes any actual hard work unrewarding and pointless. The shitty control issues and moronic terrain issues are counterbalanced by the fact that the game looks great and that the dog is adorable and actually offers a lot of great mechanical elements (the dig spots, training, etc.) but the damnable, inescapable problem with this game is that there seems to have been no effort to make the basic structure of the in-game world make any sense.

Jamescobo: Resistance 2
PROTIP: I hear this game has invisible enemies.

CraigG: Me
There's been so many games that haven't been as good as I expected but none of the ones I was REALLY hyped for were shit. I was looking forward to Fallout, which was better than I expected, I was eager for Mother3 which delivered in abundance. I guess one game that I really hoped would be better - not so much that the game is flawed, but that it didn't "grab" me in the way I'd hoped, was Super Mario Galaxy and that's an '07 release. Still, I kept hoping for a 3D Mario that gets me like Mario 64 did when it came out and I actually do think SMG is better than Mario 64. So I suppose my biggest disappointment is... myself, really. I don't understand why I don't love Galaxy more than I do. :'(

Lamp: Persona 4
Not because of the game, but because it got stolen from the lobby of my building the last week of December, presumably by one of my neighbors. Who else would be able to get into my building and the area where the post office dude leaves Amazon packages? Sure, Fable II fucking sucked but this is some next level bullshit. IMO richass brokers stealing my Aliens boxset and Xbox games is a sign of the times 4 real.

Top fifteen on the way soon.

Throwing Puffy under the gay bus, whatever that means (forksclovetofu), Tuesday, 24 February 2009 18:19 (ten years ago) link

forks please start a new thread for top 15

s1ocki, Tuesday, 24 February 2009 18:34 (ten years ago) link

o rly? okay, will do.

Throwing Puffy under the gay bus, whatever that means (forksclovetofu), Tuesday, 24 February 2009 18:35 (ten years ago) link

ya antexit just told me this is crashing his firefox and it really slows mine down too! some reason youtubes are super heavy

s1ocki, Tuesday, 24 February 2009 18:45 (ten years ago) link

Weird; loads fine for me(after letting it sit for about thirty seconds or so) when I login anonymously.

Throwing Puffy under the gay bus, whatever that means (forksclovetofu), Tuesday, 24 February 2009 19:04 (ten years ago) link

lol @ Lamp re: Persona 4, that sucks but led to the most awesome rational for "biggest disappointment"

Lots of praying with no breakfast! (HI DERE), Tuesday, 24 February 2009 19:07 (ten years ago) link

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