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post #1 of 36 Old 12-31-2012, 01:29 AM - Thread Starter
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Prompted by some comments in the Assassin's Creed III discussion, I figured I'd start a "year in review" thread. What were your most memorable gaming experiences of this past year? And since not everyone plays the newest releases right away, feel free to mention games from previous years that you played for the first time in 2012.

I'll start:

Catherine -- This is a 2011 game that I only got around to this year. I won't say I loved it, but it's probably the game I talked about the most to other people, because it was just so different from any other game I've played.

Deus Ex: Human Revolution -- Another 2011 game. I pretty much liked everything about this game except the way trophies were handled.

Journey -- Beautiful; if only it were longer. Wordlessly cooperating with a stranger to help each other fly was an unexpected delight.

Borderlands 2 -- Dumb fun, but it definitely delivered on the fun.

Papo & Yo -- A remarkable accomplishment. While I have no personal experience with the subject matter, I found this game's ending to be a genuinely moving experience.

Sleeping Dogs -- Maybe it doesn't do anything new in the open-world genre, but it does a great job at what it sets out to do. Not only was it a blast, but I thought the story was good, too.

(Some 2012 games I've bought but haven't played yet: Dishonored, The Walking Dead, Max Payne 3, and Spec Ops: The Line.)
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post #2 of 36 Old 12-31-2012, 02:37 AM
 
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I don't understand how your entire post can contain essentially immaculate grammar, and yet your thread title is such a tragedy. smile.gif
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post #3 of 36 Old 12-31-2012, 04:57 AM
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[quote (Some 2012 games I've bought but haven't played yet: Dishonored, The Walking Dead, Max Payne 3, and Spec Ops: The Line.)[/quote]

The Walking Dead is the only memorable game for me this year.

Really want to get Journey.
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post #4 of 36 Old 12-31-2012, 08:40 AM
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I unfortunately don't have the time I wish I did, so many great games are unplayed by me. I have titles like ME3, Borderlands 2, RE6, Far Cry 3, etc., sitting around.

Assassin's Creed 3 - big, beautiful, with tons of really interesting things to do. I know it's divisive, but I love it.

Guild Wars 2 - this is an amazingly great, beautiful, and ambitious MMO game that quite nearly delivered on everything it set out to do.

XCOM Enemy Unknown - This game is more tense than anything I've played in a long time. I really admire what Firaxis did with this game.

Max Payne 3 - The shooting is fun but what is most impressive is the great graphics, settings, and voice work. Rockstar threw a ton of money at this game and it shows.

Tekken Tag 2 - A really well-done fighting game with lots of content.

Persona 4 The Golden - This game is easily one of the best handheld games ever by default, and Atlus did some good work on updating it for 2012.
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post #5 of 36 Old 12-31-2012, 09:48 AM
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Don't have enough time right now to list all (I'm at work), but I wanted to throw my hat into the ring for "Far Cry 3".

SO amazing. I love it cause:

Incredible graphics. There have been many, many times, I've stopped what I was doing to watch a sunset from a high cliff over the ocean, or stood at the base of a 300' waterfall looking up and gaping in amazement. THIS is how environments are made! This is a video game, there's no reason the landscape shouldn't be dynamic and awesome (I'm talking to you Dragon's Dogma!).

Great soundtrack, awesome sound effects. Tiger growls can stand the hair up on the back of my neck when I can't see the tiger in a dense jungle. It gets intense!

Amazing game play (I don't recall ever getting stuck on something, or frustrated with aiming or controls ONCE! I'm talking to YOU Assassin's Creed 3!!!)

Cool story, with very memorable characters. Citra? Oh hell yeah.

Lots of side quests and treasure hunts. The Letters of the Lost are an amazing read!

It's "Platinumable". (I made that word up, TM Chairman7w, 2012) No ridiculous, unachievable trophies. Just a lot of fun chasing letters and relics (practically a game in itself). I WILL Platinum this game!

I could go on. I love this game. In my all-time top 5, maybe even number one.

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post #6 of 36 Old 12-31-2012, 09:59 AM
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Bass support for RockSmith.
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post #7 of 36 Old 12-31-2012, 09:59 AM
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My favorite PS3 games:

Rayman Origins - Came out in 2011, but I didn't give it a chance until 2012. Started off slow. So slow that I put it on a shelf for six months after just playing the first few areas. But once I returned, this turned into one of the best platformers of the past decade. Easily my favorite gaming experience of the past year.

The Walking Dead - Telltale finally got their formula right. They've been beating their adventure game horse to death of the past five years with mixed results at best. But with The Walking Dead they finally brought everything they've learned together into an excellent package. It's got its flaws to be sure (action sequences), but it's got some of the most fully realized characters, and the first compelling interactive branching story in gaming.

Journey - A wonderful take on the N64-era adventure titles (like Zelda and Banjo Kazooie). It's designed around being "intuitive" in a very real way. You must "intuit" the controls, the objects, the enemies, the friends. And you must "intuit" a way of communicating with another human playing somewhere else. It's also beautiful. And unlike most games these days, it leaves you wanting more, not less.

Dyad - I'm a big fan of Wipeout and of shmups. This combines elements of both. It's an entire game structured like a tutorial. Reaching the end was satisfying. Earning trophies is a major challenge. All the work of a single person.

Sound Shapes - Jonathan Mak's prior game, Everyday Shooter, was the reason I bought a PS3. Sound Shapes may not match it, but it was an odd, interesting little title. The Beck levels were a real highlight, as were the challenge stages and music-making stages. Wish there was more.

Max Payne 3 - I was worried that a new studio taking the reins would ruin what had been one of my favorite series. But not only did they not ruin it, they improved it and turned the noir dream-world of the prior games into a critique of American colonial egotism.

In the maybe pile: Far Cry 3 - It's pretty and there's a lot going on, but the game is broken as is. The crafting, skill upgrades, and weapon purchasing systems make the game way too easy. I'm currently ten hours in and I'm still tuning the game to make it challenging. I'm playing on highest difficulty, without aim assist or weapon tagging. I'm not using the big map. I'm not doing any upgrades or purchasing or looting (of animals or people) unless it's required for a mission. Considering how much tweaking it's taking me to turn this into a good game, I'm not sure I can call it a "favorite" of 2012. I'll have to give it more time and more tweaking.


Non-PS3 favorites:
Dodonpachi Maximum (iOS)
Akai Kitana (360)
Super Hexagon (iOS)
Mark of the Ninja (360)
Hotline Miami (PC)
Fez (360)
Lone Survivor (PC)
Trials Evolution (360)

Yet-to-play contenders:
Xcom
FTL (PC)
Legend of Grimrock (PC)
Spelunky (360)
Incredepede (PC)
Dear Esther (PC)
Botanicula (PC)

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post #8 of 36 Old 12-31-2012, 12:31 PM
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This was definitely the year of the downloadable game for me. The tail end of the year was loaded with all the big games, and I'm honestly not going to get around to most of them until next year.

The new ones that really stood out to me so far were journey, fez, mark of the ninja, walking dead. Most of them are barely games....but still incredible experiences.

Syndicate and the darkness 2 were solid FPS games that each did a little something unique, had a great style to them, and are totally worth playing through.

There were same games that straddle the line between sequel and update that I also loved, like black ops 2, soul calibur V and MTG:2013.

And despite all the controversy, I thought mass effect 3 was a great end to the series, and only got way better through DLC. If the stock game had from ashes, leviathan and the extended cut from the start...it'd probably be an easy GOTY.

I can't pick just one as the single best GOTY....there was nothing that was exemplary in every way. It was either solid takes on old ideas, or novel ideas that were too narrow to fully deliver. Far too many games had technical issues this year as well.

Honorable mention to Uncharted 3, which I first played this year, for really blowing me away. The presentation is just unreal, you genuinely feel like you're taking part in a crazy action movie. When most games cut away to a cutscene, you still have full control, and it just feels and looks amazing.

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post #9 of 36 Old 12-31-2012, 01:37 PM
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Mass Effect 3--The only major release of 2012 I picked up this year, and now among my top five all-time favorites.

The Walking Dead--I've only had the pleasure of playing the first two episodes, which were free to Plus members. When I can get the full game on disc for the same price as the PSN version, I'll grab it!

Mass Effect--I know it's been around forever, but I finally got to play it this month when it was made available for the PS3.

Ratchet & Clank HD Collection--Though the first game in the trilogy almost made me start to hate one of my favorite franchises, Going Commando alone made this worth the $30 price, and I still have Up Your Arsenal to look forward to.

Beyond that, I spent much of the rest of the year playing older RPGs, like Fallout 3 and Dragon Age II, and freebees for PS Plus members, including Borderlands, Trine 2, and some other decent PSN titles.
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post #10 of 36 Old 12-31-2012, 05:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Zookster View Post

The Walking Dead--I've only had the pleasure of playing the first two episodes, which were free to Plus members. When I can get the full game on disc for the same price as the PSN version, I'll grab it!
Episodes 3 and 4 are the best of the bunch. Those episodes really packed a one-two punch!

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post #11 of 36 Old 12-31-2012, 06:39 PM
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PS3 Game of the Year:
Tekken Tag Tournament 2 - The most fun I had in gaming this year, and possibly my favorite PS3 release all time.






PSN Game of the Year:
The Pinball Arcade - Hours and hours of high score chasing fun. I have every DLC table and still can't wait for more in 2013.


Los Angeles Lakers - 16 NBA Championships!

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post #12 of 36 Old 01-02-2013, 01:56 PM
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In no particular order:

XCOM: Enemy Unknown: A very good reimagining of one of the greatest video games ever made. It can't match the original, but it's a worthy successor, and much more accessible than the earlier entries in the series, without sacrificing difficulty.

SSX: A nice balance of old and new, with the addition of rewinds, specialty hazards and gear, and superb asynchronous multiplayer support. A later patch added simultaneous multiplayer and free ride, which really rounded out the package. Another game that managed to be accessible without sacrificing difficulty.

Journey: Great art design, game structure, and multiplayer. Meant for multiple playthroughs. One of those classic art house games like Ico and Shadow Of The Colossus.

Sleeping Dogs: A pleasant surprise -- an open-world GTA-style game with a focus on melee combat that was actually fun. Great characterization, too.

Need For Speed: Most Wanted: A spiritual sequel to Burnout Paradise that doesn't quite reach the heights of either that game or 2010's Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit, but is still a very good game in its own right. I've sunken many hours into it.

Virtua Fighter 5: Final Showdown: A victory lap for my personal favorite fighting game series at a budget price. One of the best values out there.

Assassin's Creed III: This had the seeds of greatness, but the rush out the door left the story a bit disjointed and lacking the power it could have had. I managed to avoid the bugs that seemed to plague others, though, and still had a very enjoyable experience. Haven't tried the multiplayer yet.

Resident Evil 6: A somewhat unfairly maligned behemoth of a game that takes all the multiplayer aspects of RE5 to the next level, and even borrows a bit from Dark Souls. If you can deal with the overabundance of QTEs and a few other quirks, this game is packed with different game modes and content.


Stuff I haven't played (enough) yet:

Far Cry 3: About 2 hours in and enjoying it quite a bit. The cut scene framerate is pretty horrible, but during gameplay it's acceptable. Had some problems trying to get online co-op going.

The Walking Dead: Just got the disc version, haven't opened it yet.


Overall, 2012 seemed like a relatively weak year, though there were some gems.

- Jer
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post #13 of 36 Old 01-03-2013, 03:32 AM
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Far Cry 3 hands down.

I've had a real hard time with being able to play a game for more than 10 minutes for quite a while (Uncharted 3 is the last one I can remember being super into). I cannot put this game down.
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post #14 of 36 Old 01-03-2013, 11:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by defdog99 View Post

Bass support for RockSmith.

And I need to spend more time with it!

Funny thing is, we didn't play Portal 2 until this year. It was our favorite game of 2012. wink.gif
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post #15 of 36 Old 01-04-2013, 10:49 AM
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SSX. I have put WAY more hours into this game vs ANY other game I have ever played.

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post #16 of 36 Old 01-07-2013, 07:17 AM
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Far Cry 3 and Walking Dead, enjoyed both very much. Picked up Max Payne 3 and Sleeping Dogs but haven't played either yet.
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post #17 of 36 Old 01-07-2013, 11:37 AM
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Finished Far Cry 3 last night.

Easily my favorite game of 2012 - just amazing. Wild ending, too - I thought it was cool. I have one more gameplay trophy to get (fully distract 25 enemies) and 4 more co-op, then I will Platinum the game. It's the first game I've ever WANTED to plat. It has never felt like a chore, or impossible to plat - very doable.

I'm gonna finish platinuming it, then take a break and play Sleeping Dogs. My son has finished it and loved it. When I saw the new DLC for it (JUST like Enter the Dragon!) I knew I had to get it. Looking forward to it.

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post #18 of 36 Old 01-07-2013, 04:29 PM
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Surprised at the ratings you folks are throwing at Far Cry 3. The open world stuff was great but the terrible story missions together with the blatant racism, sexism and homophobia throughout the game makes it hard to accept as best of 2012. I don't expect high ideals from video games but this title crossed well over the line into being offensive. I am reluctant to even bother finishing it due to the story missions.

At this point I would have to say that Borderlands 2 is my best of 2012. Honourable mention to Journey, Pinball Arcade and Sound Shapes.

The games I played most this year though were Skyrim (which was very late 2011) and Battlefield 3 (also late 2011).

Cheers
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post #19 of 36 Old 01-07-2013, 05:17 PM
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Racism? - Where? There were good guys and bad guys, both black, white and otherwise. Does making the Pacific Islanders darker skinned make this racist? (hint: No, it doesn't)

Sexism? - Where? One of the strongest lead characters in the story was a woman. Is it cause there are lady dancers in a club, scantily dressed? (shrug) I guess.

Homophobia? - Where? I have no idea what you're referring to.

If by Sexism you mean sexy, sensual scenes... Okay, fair enough. There's that. I'm a big boy though, it didn't bother me.

Borderlands 2 was great though, no doubting that, that's one of the best titles I've played this year. And I agree with you on Skyrim and BF3, I played those games many, many hours (130 of BF3) this year.
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Originally Posted by deathindustrial View Post

Surprised at the ratings you folks are throwing at Far Cry 3. The open world stuff was great but the terrible story missions together with the blatant racism, sexism and homophobia throughout the game makes it hard to accept as best of 2012. I don't expect high ideals from video games but this title crossed well over the line into being offensive. I am reluctant to even bother finishing it due to the story missions.
At this point I would have to say that Borderlands 2 is my best of 2012. Honourable mention to Journey, Pinball Arcade and Sound Shapes.
The games I played most this year though were Skyrim (which was very late 2011) and Battlefield 3 (also late 2011).
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post #20 of 36 Old 01-07-2013, 05:58 PM
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The racism is of the "great white hope" variety (or "noble savage" or whatever). Pretty much every character in this game that is not white is either stupid, helpless or there for sex appeal. That's far from unusual in video games but Far Cry 3 goes so far out of its way to shove this in your face it becomes offensive. I think it was actually a side mission where a native once again portrayed as an idiot required the white hero to collect his tribe's cultural artifacts that really cemented just how screwed up this game's attitude is. The hero spoke in an obvious condescending manner and it was supposed to be seen as a joke by the player that this native was too dumb to keep track of their own culture and required a white hero to save them from themselves. There are a number of unfunny "ex-wife stole all my stuff" type jokes in the log files for example that keep with the 80's logger town attitudes throughout the game. They decide to make the one prominent gay character a sicko rapist (with the other one being a dumb native adulterer). Having these elements in a game because they are part of the character development is one thing but Far Cry 3 is too superficial to claim it really has any. Instead it comes off like they expect the player to think this stuff is a) totally funny and b) the social norm - it isn't funny (the writing is far too poor for it to be) and this ain't the 1980s. Far Cry 2 had none of this stuff and was a far more cohesive game thematically (game mechanics aside).

If it was just ethnocentric and ethically questionable I would probably have less of an issue since that is not exactly uncommon in commercial films and games. It's the fact that the main story missions are so poorly designed that it no longer is worth putting up with the less savoury aspects of the game because they simply are not fun. It was work to get the second island due to the having to complete so many story missions first.

Cheers
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post #21 of 36 Old 01-07-2013, 07:58 PM
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Thanks I appreciate the well thought out answer.

I don't agree, but that's cool - I'll still buy ya a drink (Chairman slides a beer down the bar to deathindustrial). I think you think too much buddy. Life's too short to go looking to be offended when no offense is meant.

"Pretty much every character in this game that is not white is either stupid, helpless or there for sex appeal." - you mean like Dennis, the guy that saves your life? and teaches you the ways of the warrior? He's not stupid, helpless, or in it for sex appeal. So - that throws that theory out the window.

Who is the gay prominent character you're talking about? I don't remember any gay characters.

"80's logger town attitude..." - I don't even know what this is. I... I don't even know what to say. But I get you don't like it, fair enough. I think you're looking in the wrong spot for some high-brow, deep, non-80s logger town entertainment.

These are video games. You may be better off finding another form of entertainment.

Quote:
Originally Posted by deathindustrial View Post

The racism is of the "great white hope" variety (or "noble savage" or whatever). Pretty much every character in this game that is not white is either stupid, helpless or there for sex appeal. That's far from unusual in video games but Far Cry 3 goes so far out of its way to shove this in your face it becomes offensive. I think it was actually a side mission where a native once again portrayed as an idiot required the white hero to collect his tribe's cultural artifacts that really cemented just how screwed up this game's attitude is. The hero spoke in an obvious condescending manner and it was supposed to be seen as a joke by the player that this native was too dumb to keep track of their own culture and required a white hero to save them from themselves. There are a number of unfunny "ex-wife stole all my stuff" type jokes in the log files for example that keep with the 80's logger town attitudes throughout the game. They decide to make the one prominent gay character a sicko rapist (with the other one being a dumb native adulterer). Having these elements in a game because they are part of the character development is one thing but Far Cry 3 is too superficial to claim it really has any. Instead it comes off like they expect the player to think this stuff is a) totally funny and b) the social norm - it isn't funny (the writing is far too poor for it to be) and this ain't the 1980s. Far Cry 2 had none of this stuff and was a far more cohesive game thematically (game mechanics aside).
If it was just ethnocentric and ethically questionable I would probably have less of an issue since that is not exactly uncommon in commercial films and games. It's the fact that the main story missions are so poorly designed that it no longer is worth putting up with the less savoury aspects of the game because they simply are not fun. It was work to get the second island due to the having to complete so many story missions first.
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post #22 of 36 Old 01-07-2013, 09:22 PM
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I honestly see what he is saying, but eh, it's a game and a fun one. Though I like AC3 more, I think.
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post #23 of 36 Old 01-08-2013, 08:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deathindustrial View Post

The racism is of the "great white hope" variety (or "noble savage" or whatever). Pretty much every character in this game that is not white is either stupid, helpless or there for sex appeal. That's far from unusual in video games but Far Cry 3 goes so far out of its way to shove this in your face it becomes offensive. I think it was actually a side mission where a native once again portrayed as an idiot required the white hero to collect his tribe's cultural artifacts that really cemented just how screwed up this game's attitude is. The hero spoke in an obvious condescending manner and it was supposed to be seen as a joke by the player that this native was too dumb to keep track of their own culture and required a white hero to save them from themselves. There are a number of unfunny "ex-wife stole all my stuff" type jokes in the log files for example that keep with the 80's logger town attitudes throughout the game. They decide to make the one prominent gay character a sicko rapist (with the other one being a dumb native adulterer). Having these elements in a game because they are part of the character development is one thing but Far Cry 3 is too superficial to claim it really has any. Instead it comes off like they expect the player to think this stuff is a) totally funny and b) the social norm - it isn't funny (the writing is far too poor for it to be) and this ain't the 1980s. Far Cry 2 had none of this stuff and was a far more cohesive game thematically (game mechanics aside).
If it was just ethnocentric and ethically questionable I would probably have less of an issue since that is not exactly uncommon in commercial films and games. It's the fact that the main story missions are so poorly designed that it no longer is worth putting up with the less savoury aspects of the game because they simply are not fun. It was work to get the second island due to the having to complete so many story missions first.
Cheers
All I can say is you're clearly not paying attention. Far Cry 3 is very clever and deliberate in how it uses racial stereotypes. Like Cabin in the Woods, it's satirizing typical gaming tropes--especially in first-person shooters. It exaggerates racist tropes to make a point. What's funny is that people are pointing to this game's mock "racism," but then give dozens of other games (like Black Ops 2) a free pass for its genuine racism. As a gamer of color, that's what I find truly disturbing. rolleyes.gif

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post #24 of 36 Old 01-08-2013, 08:46 AM
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I'll probably go with Far Cry 3, totally addicted to it right now on the PC (1080P @ 60fps!).

Honorable mentions:
Dragon's Dogma
Journey
LBP vita
Uncharted GA
Walking Dead

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post #25 of 36 Old 01-08-2013, 09:23 AM
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The walking dead for me is the best of 2012.
Haven't played Far Cry 3 and Dishonored yet.
AC3 was a let down for me.
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post #26 of 36 Old 01-08-2013, 09:44 AM
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Yet-to-play contenders:
Xcom
FTL (PC)
Legend of Grimrock (PC)
Spelunky (360)
Incredepede (PC)
Dear Esther (PC)
Botanicula (PC)
Got a chance to play Botanicula, and I would definitely add it to my best-of-2012 list. Better than Machinarium, and even better suited to consoles. Awesome music and sound. Great puzzles. Beautiful artwork. I expect a console port in 2013.

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post #27 of 36 Old 01-10-2013, 08:08 AM
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Borderlands 2
Persona 4 Golden
Rainbow Moon (was this released in 2012?)
Final Fantasy XIII-2 (so much better than the one before it)

Honorable Mention- great games, but too short:

Dishonored
Darkness II

This thread has made me realize I play way too many video games....

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post #28 of 36 Old 01-10-2013, 03:35 PM
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All I can say is you're clearly not paying attention. Far Cry 3 is very clever and deliberate in how it uses racial stereotypes. Like Cabin in the Woods, it's satirizing typical gaming tropes--especially in first-person shooters. It exaggerates racist tropes to make a point. What's funny is that people are pointing to this game's mock "racism," but then give dozens of other games (like Black Ops 2) a free pass for its genuine racism. As a gamer of color, that's what I find truly disturbing. rolleyes.gif

I haven't played FarCry3 but if the satire is so thin people cannot distinguish between parody and genuine, then it is poorly done and worthly of being labeled as "racist".

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post #29 of 36 Old 01-10-2013, 03:44 PM
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I didn't play a ton of games in 2012 so I'll just list the ones that grabbed my attention.

Guild Wars 2 - Played it long enough to level two chars to 80 in a laptop averaging 12fps. Then one day, completely lost interest.
Kingdoms of Amalur - Loved it and am sad the developer went bankrupt.
Blops2 - I skipped MW3 with good reason. Blops2 brought back the fun. I haven't even touched zombies or the campaign and I've put over 80 hours into it.
Playstation Allstars Battle Royale - I just picked this up this week but so far its amazing and will likely turn into hundreds of not thousands of hours played unless smash bros 4 comes out soon.

I played and finished the Darkness 2 in two days while on a work trip. Good follow up to the original even if it was no where near as interesting.
NCAA 13 brought me into the year but quickly died out.

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post #30 of 36 Old 01-10-2013, 05:10 PM
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I haven't played FarCry3 but if the satire is so thin people cannot distinguish between parody and genuine, then it is poorly done and worthly of being labeled as "racist".
Seemed pretty obvious to me. The environment is basically a "Bermuda Triangle" where every dark-skinned nation is represented, where every third-world political feud is represented, where every endangered species from the "dark" places of the world is there for you to hunt, where languages and dialects of "dark" peoples intermingle (spanish, south african, southeast asian, aboriginal Australian, etc.), where every lame "primitivist" or "exociticist" Western stereotype is seemingly true, where the weapons and vehicles of a thousand different oppressed nation appears magically at any of a hundred vending machines, where a bunch of slasher-flick-ready young white "Xtreeem" tourists show up, and so on. It's very clear in its satire. Folks who miss it just aren't paying attention.

The head writer for Far Cry 3 is the guy who wrote the Subject 16 puzzles in ACB, so he knows what he's doing when it comes to political commentary. I'll admit that it isn't always a sustained satire, since it's just as easy to lose yourself in the game and exploration, but it's pretty impressive in its ridiculousness and absurdity IMO. It's fascinating to me that of all the horribly and genuinely racist games out there (especially FPS games), that it's this game that gets people riled up. To me, that says they're doing something right. wink.gif

My only real gripe with Far Cry 3 is that the skill and weapon progression needs some major tweaking. It's simply too easy as is.

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