As we start to say farewell to Generation 7, I figured I'd take my turn at a top 25 list.
Given in a semi-particular order. I'm also invoking the "only one game from the franchise" rule.
25. Batman: Arkham Asylum City was probably better, and it certainly had the better ending (I’ve yet to play Origin, but from what I’ve heard it ranks third anyway), but if I ever go back and revisit one, it’ll be Asylum.
24. Deus Ex: Human Revolution: Never played the first Deus Ex. Bought it cheap on Steam, but couldn’t get through it (90’s era FPS’s can be hard to go back to). Absolutely loved Human Revolution. Got all the achievements on 360 and made an effort to get the platinum on PS3 when it was a Plus freebie, but other games keep getting my attention.
23. Dead Space I not that big of a horror fan, and by the time I tried the first Resident Evil technology had evolved to the point where it was possible to shoot and move at the same time. For me, Dead Space is a good shooter with a good story and ingenious weapons that just happened to be creepy as hell. Really like the second one, too, but third was a bit underwhelming.
22. Burnout Paradise My favorite racing game this generation, hands down. And one of the first to really get how to support a game with DLC.
21. Just Cause 2 Visit location. Blow shit up. Repeat. You can sink a hundred hours into this game before you even bother starting the second story mission.
20. 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand What? Don’t look at me like that. Sure, the story line is absurd and the voice acting is bad, but all is forgiven the first time you see 50 Cent reload his dual wielding Uzis like he’s Jesus Fiddy Christ. I will seriously pre-order the sequel the day it’s announced. And if the plot involves that diamond-encrusted skull granting him superpowers, which he then uses to fight crime in Queens and take down a mob boss played by Mike Starr, I will buy the motherfucking $150 special edition.
19. Assassin’s Creed 2 The first AC was the first game I played when I finally got an HD TV, and my reaction wasn’t too different from those character posters for the movie Nymphomaniac.
Nicolas Bro's, specifically...and unfortunately
AC2 was even better. And the multiplayer they added in Brotherhood was probably the most underappreciated of the generation.
18. Gears of War I actually played this on PC first, then Microsoft realized that they probably should start keeping a few on their franchises console-exclusive. Gears 2 was basically the game that got me to buy a 360 (I’m not a Halo guy, if you couldn’t tell by its absence on this list).
17. Journey There’s nothing like sharing this moving, beautiful experience with a complete stranger, only to learn afterwards that his PSN name was Ball_Sack95.
16. Mass Effect 2 Great game, even though they probably streamlined it too much for the sake of the masses. Masses who quickly turned on them like entitled brats when the third game was released. I personally didn’t have a problem with the ending of 3, because for me the ending didn’t start with that last cut scene. It started when Shepard started saying good-bye to everyone at the start of that final mission.
15. The Walking Dead When the PS4 was announced, David Cage gave a speech on how awesome technology could be used to show emotions. Those who played The Walking Dead were quick to point out that you didn’t really need a quadrillion pixel-count to do that.
14. Borderlands 2 Borderlands may be the most pure fun I had playing a game this generation. Great DLC.
13. Portal 2: God, what an amazing game. I can’t imagine anyone playing this and having a single issue with it. Oh, wait…
12. LittleBig Planet 2 The first LBP is still my proudest platinum trophy, plus I ended up winning a pretty cool award by playing it.
11. Metal Gear Solid 4 If your list of the top 25 PS3 games doesn’t include MGS 4, I have a hard time taking your list seriously (especially if it includes Catherine instead). The game looks and plays just as great as it did when it first came out, even if the story gets so convoluted it makes Franz Kafka look like Dr. Seuss. I'm already getting excited for MGS V.
10. God of War 3: Kratos has never looked better or killed bigger. I can only imagine how he'll look on PS4, but I wouldn't be suprised if the DualShock's light bar pulsates during the sex mini-game.
9. Skyrim I got this on PS3 few months – and a few patches – after release and never had the problems that plagued it in the beginning. Played it nonstop for two months. You never forget your first fight with a giant.
More of an encounter, really…
8. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare Whether or not it’s the best game of this generation is a matter of opinion, but it’s inarguably the game that defined this generation. If there’s a Mount Rushmore of gaming, Captain Price should be right up there with Mario and Master Chief.
…and he’s Teddy Bloody Roosevelt
The numerous holy shit moments is this game have been imitated by most of the FPS’s that followed (including – and especially – the COD franchise itself), but no one’s been able to duplicate the AC-130 mission, the nuke explosion, or the first time you realized that guy in the ghillie suit had been in front of you the whole time. Not to mention the sheer insanity and fun of a grenade-filled Domination match in the Shipment map.
7. Bioshock People in the gaming community like to debate (argue) on what makes a gamer a “hardcore” gamer. If a litmus test was ever created to identify one, it would certainly include the phrase “Would you kindly.” It was one of this generation’s early examples of why Roger Ebert and like-minded people were more than a little out of touch on what a video game could be. Rapture was as much a character as it was a city, plasmids were an ingenious twist on magic, and Big Daddys were easily the best enemies of this generation (and easily in the top five of all time).
6. Fallout 3 After sinking a couple of hundred hours into this game, I was doing something on the PC as my son played it on the couch nearby. Suddenly I hear a bunch of people speaking Chinese and saw that my son had stumbled into an area filled with Chinese mutants that I had never come across. Two hundred hours and I still hadn’t seen everything. If my son was doing this list, it would most likely be his number one. He still plays it on PC whenever he stumbles across a new mod, and probably logged in over 400 hours altogether.
5. Grand Theft Auto IV: I’ll admit that GTA V is better, but a day or two after getting IV my brother and I were talking about the game and most of conversation was he and I taking turns asking each other, “Have you done ____, yet?” Have you flown out of a windshield after a head-on collision? Have you watched TV, yet? Have you gone to the internet cafe, yet? etc. My ringtone for him is still the GTA IV theme song (before that, it was a drunken Niko screaming “Mr. Man!”).
4. Battlefield 3 I only dabbled with the franchise on the PC, but I haven’t touched COD’s multiplayer since playing Bad Company 2. I love the class system, the huge-ass maps, the vehicles. The fact the there’s also a significantly reduced number of bros, children and various types of slurring (on PC and PS3 anyway) just makes it all the better.
3. Uncharted 2 Dat Train.
2. The Last of Us It's hard to describe how I feel about Naughty Dog games.
...yeah, that'll do.
I love the way the story bookends itself. Survivor difficulty feels exactly like that. And the multiplayer was ingenious. It forced you to play as a team, and even had a backstory that actually felt important. I won’t pack my PS3 away until I get my platinum.
1. Red Dead Redemption Remember when you were playing GTA IV and thought it would be awesome if the next game took place in the Old West instead a sprawling city? Me neither, but thankfully Rockstar did. Some thought Mexico grinded the story to a halt, but I didn’t, mainly because I never wanted the story to end. When it did, though, it was perfect. It’s also noteworthy that this game is responsible for giving the VGA’s the only moment of respectability it’s ever had in its decade-plus existence.
...but then this happened minutes later.
Stack of Shame (never played): Far Cry 3 (or Blood Dragon), Tomb Raider, Dark Souls, Demon Souls,Black Ops II, Saint Row the Third, Saints Row 4, Sleeping Dogs, Diablo 3, Splinter Cell Blacklist, Ni No Kuni, Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, anything on a Wii