Well then. That was 2010. As we all get ready to go out, get drunk, act like a tit and feel like shit tomorrow, we can maybe spare a few moments and look back on the awesome gaming year that was 2010.
It was a year of ups and downs. A year that saw Call of Duty dev Infinity Ward go tits up due to some arguments with publisher Activision about something or other. A year that saw Microsoft unleash Kinect onto the world and told us that the future was controller-less, but you would look like a complete bell end while playing it, and Sony essentially just copied the Wii and made a motion controller that looked like some futuristic dildo from the Starship Enterprise!
All in all it was a great year. I was going to do a review of the year, but seeing as how A) It would take me ages and B) you can get pretty much exhaustive year in review coverage from other sites, i've decided to just jump straight in and give you Gamefreak's top 5 games of 2010.
It's a very hard list to compile, as it was a cracking year for gaming. Not just at retail either. The Xbox live and PSN services had some amazing games to download, and Apple too also showed that it's iPhone and iPad were a force in gaming. But the games i've picked are the ones that have held my attention more than others during the year. You may disagree with some on the lists, and I hope that you do. They are simply the games that I loved at the time, and i'm still playing at the moment, and probably will be until well into next year.
So.......*drum roll*.......in reverse order.........
#5. Rock Band 3
When Harmonix first created Guitar Hero, it created a cultural phenomenon. Even though Konami and Guitar Freaks originated the idea, Harmonix took the idea that one step further. Tapping into the idea that everyone wants to be a rock star, Guitar Hero and it's sequel sold umpteen millions. Harmonix then left the GH franchise and once more took it to the next level with Rock band. Not only could you now prat about with little plastic guitars, with Rock Band you could now do the same with added drums and sing along with a microphone. And with Rock band 3 Harmonix have literally bridged the gap between game and learning an instrument. With keyboard support added and the new pro-modes, you are for all intents and purposes learning to play that instrument. Add to that tireless game modes, online play, constant DLC updates, challenges posted by the official RB website, you have a game that will last for as long as the updates are still coming. Bravo!
#4. Halo: Reach
It was almost a spoiler before the game was released. Anyone who has read the Halo novels or followed the storyline whatsoever already knew what the fate of Reach was. So how did Bungie handle the task? Like the professionals that they are. Taking the already well developed Halo world, they craft a tale that is almost cinematic. Following the Spartan Noble team as the discover a covenant invasion of the planet Reach, we see how the team takes on the challenges that are thrown at them. Taking the Bungie manta of "30 seconds of fun", the player is chucked from set piece to set piece, featuring huge battles on foot, in vehicles and in one section to space combat itself. And even after you have beaten the campaign, either alone or in co-op mode, you then have the vast wealth of online modes. Almost too exhausting to go into, you can play and record any match, any gametype, and when you're finished with the levels on the game you can pop over to the Forge editor and make some levels of your own. A fitting end to Bungie's take on it's own masterpiece.
#3. Battlefield: Bad company 2
I'd admittedly missed the first part in this series, and I was a few weeks into the release of this game when someone said to be that I really should get it. Unconvinced, I went out and splashed some hard earned in it. One of the best moves i've made. In my eyes it is a game of two halves. The single player campaign isn't the best out there. It's enjoyable, it doesn't really do anything wrong, and it looks and sounds great. It's just a little bit familiar. Still worth a play through though. However, it's online where this game comes into its own. It's incredible. Taking a basic class system, such as medic, recon etc, you and your team take on the opposition on maps that vary from small to the size of a small country. You can run, you can drive, and you can take to the air in various helicopters. Modes include conquest and rush, where you have to diffuse or activate bombs spread around the maps, or where you have to capture flag points. There are a wealth of modes other than this, such as squad deathmatch etc. And it's one game that just begs to be played through a surround sound system. The effects are some of the best i've ever heard in a game, especially the echoey crack of sniper fire. Played properly, and with a good team on your side, it offers an online experience that Call of Duty just fails to match. And with the recent Vietnam add on, it's just that cherry on a very, VERY tasty cake.
#2. Red Dead Redemption.
I loved the original Red Dead game, and when this was announced I cracked out my arseless chaps from the wardrobe, dusted off my Sombrero and didn't bathe for a month. The game is truly an epic. Following the exploits of John Marston, we join him after he has been shot and left for dead. A local rancher revives him and treats his wounds, and then the story of redemption starts. john decides to track down and confront the gang he used to ride with, and the very people that left him for dead. The story takes us all over the country, helping cattle ranchers, corrupt governments in Mexico, and all sorts of people who have come to seek their fame and fortune, people that have been wronged or who are doing wrong. The story is extremely well crafted, as is the game world itself. People go about their business, trains run, shops open and close, and various wildlife inhabits every part of the world. John Marston has jumped into the instant classic character canon, and the world he inhabits is just as strong a character as Marston himself. The world is stunning. You could pause the game at any moment and it's a postcard quality shot of the old west, and add to that some stunning weather effects such as sunsets, rain and snow. Rockstar also serve up some fantastic DLC, with co-op missions and new weapons and characters, including some from the first game. Add to that the bloody brilliant Undead Nightmare add on pack, and It's a game that deserves to be in any gamers collection, and it just narrowly missed out on the top spot!
#1. Mass Effect 2
Yep. Mass Effect 2 is gamefreakblog's game of 2010.
Following the events of the first game, Commander Shepard, who was thought to be dead, has been revived by the shadowy Cerberus Group. Cerberus had reports of human colonies being attacked on the outskirts of space, and Shepard has been brought back with a new crew and ship to find out the cause of this new menace. The game sees Shepard scouring parts of the galaxy to find some new team members to help him with this task, as well as being joined by some old familiar faces. Some people took an instant dislike to the game, as it does away with the menu management of the first game in the series, and in a way, it is a little blow. You don't have much control over your weapons, armour or upgrades in this game as you did in the first, and it does suffer slightly for it. However, the rest of the game, from the combat, to the controls and to the dialogue, has been polished to highly you can see your blackheads in it! The characters development is second to non, the new characters such as Miranda, Jack and Professor Mordin are brilliant, especially Mordin, who has some of the best lines of dialogue in a game....EVER. It's such a well crafted game, and the universe it's set in has now to me at least, become as believable and instantly recognisable as anything George Lucas has created. There are a few downsides, such as the purely fucking irritating planet scanning, and they have retired driving around the planets in the Mako (although with the Hammerhead DLC they have remedied this somewhat), but all in all it's a game that I enjoyed more than any other in 2010, and the third game in the series is on the top of my most wanted list.
So that's the list. Honourable mentions go to a shedload of games that almost made the list (and probably would have could I be bothered to write a top ten!!) are Call of Duty: Black ops, Limbo, Super meat boy, Need for Speed: Hot pursuit, Heavy Rain, Bayonetta, Deadly Premonition and Vanquish.
So that's the list, and that's Gamefreaks last blog of 2010. I'll see you all in the new year with loads and loads of changes. A new look for the blog, video reviews and hints, and loads loads more. And I want more of your input too.
So it just leaves me wishing all of Gamefreaks readers a very happy New Year, whatever you are doing, and here's to a fantastic 2011!