Another year has sailed by and left a series of bad games, some dull games and some brilliant games, and both Darren and Matt have spent their time and handpicked several games from each year of the decade, moving onto 2011.
The amount of times that Skyrim has been ported to different consoles, it was always going to be on this list. The giant adventure that allowed players to live out their ultimate fantasies by flying around, slaying dragons and conjuring up spells. It was a Bethesda game, so bugs were expected, and oh boy, Skyrim had some bugs.
With being a Bethesda open-world game, it followed all the paint-by-numbers design as their previous games, so you can jump from playing Fallout to Skyrim and take very little time to get used to it. Skyrim has such a beautiful world that you can so easily get lost in it and lose all sense of time, like before you know it, you’ve been dicking around in the mountains for hours.
Now we come to a sales phenomenon and one of two games this decade to have sold over 100 million copies – Minecraft by Mojang games. Where you explore a procedurally generated pixelated world made of blocks. You can dig and extract minerals to then build stuff with alone or with friends. With many game modes from survival mode where the clue is in the title. Adventure mode which is like survival mode but can be tweaked about, or my personal favorite Creative mode where you can build anything to your heart’s content. Mine in this case was an underwater base with the most obnoxious and oblivious entrance ever.
What made Minecraft special was that it was so completely open ended and limitless imagination. From cases like a working hard drive, 8-bit computer, emulators for the Atari 2600 and Game Boy Advance. Oh, and the entirety of Denmark full scale in Minecraft – do I need to say more?
Now you’re thinking with portals – bigger and more grand portals that is. Portal 2 had a hard task from the start, following on from the near perfect Portal, and this was followed up by changing from the simplistic game and making it much larger in scale, and focusing more on the backstory than the puzzles and gameplay – it was a risky gamble, but it worked.
It’s certainly hard to not love Portal 2, but it has lost a lot of charm from the first game in exchange for a bigger setting. The multiplayer mode was a nice addition, but it was a quick way to destroy a friendship, as dealing with a friend who can’t figure out ledges and jumps was a real issue.
Now, Driver as a series at the time was a bit stagnant from two great games, to whatever the hell was Driver 3. Coupled with 2 other attempts that didn’t have the same panache as the first two games, Driver: San Francisco had low expectations, but how wrong I was. Driver San Francisco was a brilliant game following on from the events of Driver 3, where after a breakout by Charles Jericho and a big crash in the aftermath. John Tanner wakes up suddenly unharmed, but has the power to process other drivers, so he and his partner work towards taking him down.
Now why I love this game is the fact that it plays out like a buddy cop movie. With its story and tone which I love, the “shift” mechanic is enjoyable and really cathartic where you can process a driver of a Volkswagen Beetle and crash them into bad guys, and the soundtrack is well to put it one way – “Get it into my veins”. Driving mechanics are solid and enjoyable as well, this is one case for me of a game that I think was designed for me in mind. Great Game.
La Noire puts players in the shoes of their favourite Robo-Cop Cole Phelps as he rises through the ranks of the local police department in this insanely long adventure. The back has since been remastered, but I owned it first on the 360, and it came on several disks, and I remember being slightly bored by the start of disk 2 – not because it’s a bad game, it’s a great game, it’s just Cole is the worst main character in the history of gaming.
The gameplay consists of walking around a crime scene and waiting for the controller to vibrate, then being in an interrogation of a suspect where Cole struggles to learn the line between good cop and bad cop in the history of the world. LA Noire also has one of the worst endings I think I’ve ever sat through, it’s one of the very few times I’ve put the controller down and shouted “is that it?” at the TV.
It’s rather scary to think that it’s been nearly 8 years since the bull busting tough bastard that is Dark Souls by From Software landed. Now, while it was as unforgiving as a cranky Honey badger on your testicles. Which was a turn off for some people out there, but if you can fight your way through that, what you ended up with is an exceptional dark fantasy RPG – a world that is deeply explorative and massive. An assortment of fantasy-Medieval weapons to use, and magic, and combat where one wrong move and you’re dead.
It put From Software on the map and spawned several games since and games that have been influenced by the design and its philosophy of dark souls. While there have been arguments for adjustable difficulties for games like dark souls since (and in someway agree with a bit). If you can prevail against the difficulty it is an exceptional game.
Agree with this list? Think we missed any out? Let us know in the comments