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My Favorite Games I Played in 2012 (Part 1)

Posted by tylerh1701, 27 December 2012 · 97 views

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Looking over my recent blog posts, I feel like I've been a little bit too negative in posting about games that I don't really care for. So to buck that trend, here are some of my favorite games that I played in 2012.

Note that not all of them released in 2012. As a CAG, I never buy games on release, so a lot of the games I played in 2012 weren't actually released in 2012, especially retail games. These are just some of my favorites that I played over the year. Games that weren't released in 2012 will be marked with an asterisk (*).


Asura's Wrath: :360: :ps3:

One of my favorite games that did release in 2012. QTE's are rarely ever enjoyable, but Asura's Wrath did a good job of implementing them smartly and they made sense for the most part. The action, on the other hand, was top caliber. The game was broken up very well, 10-20 minute action scenes followed by a few minutes of a pretty good cutscenes, and then right back to the action.

At this point, third-person brawlers are probably my favorite genre (Bayonetta is still my favorite game of this generation) and Asura's Wrath did a unique and great job.

Borderlands 2: :360: :ps3:

Borderlands 2 is just more Borderlands, which is a great thing. The gameplay in Borderlands 2 is perfectly precise and the "just one more mission" aspect is just as addictive as it was in the first game. A quality sequel to one of my 4 favorite current generation games, which I like to call the 4 B's. (Bayonetta, Batman: Arkham Asylum, Bioshock, Borderlands)

BloodRayne Betrayal*: XBLA/PSN

A quality 2D hack and slash that generated a "love it or hate it" opinion among gamers. I personally loved the 2D action and great control scheme, though the platforming did leave something to be desired.

Rayman Origins*: :360: :ps3: :wii: PSVita

An absolutely beautiful 2D platformer. This was actually my introduction into the world of Rayman, and I'm glad I finally took the plunge. As a huge platforming fan, the challenge level always felt right (challenging but not masochistic). Disappointing that the sequel is currently only slated as a WiiU title.

From Dust*: XBLA/PSN

From Dust is a God-sim where you have control over the "breath" of life, and hence can reshape landscapes by moving around earth, water, lava, etc. The goal of each level is to make it possible for your followers to complete specific missions by creating safe paths and villages for them. I went into this game with a lot of doubts, but had a blast trying different ways to complete each level.

Toy Soldiers: Cold War*: XBLA

The sequel to one of my absolute favorite XBLA games, Toy Soldiers: CW is a hybrid tower defense game set in the age of the Cold War. While I actually felt like it was a letdown compared to the original, the core of the game still makes for great, addictive gameplay.

Z0MB1ES (on teh ph0ne): Windows Phone

One of my favorite Windows Phone games, this is actually a port of the XBL Indie Game I MAED A GAM3 W1TH Z0MBIES 1N IT!!!1 along with 2 other games from developer Ska Studios. Simplistic but well made twin-stick shooting and a goofy soundtrack are enough to make it a great pick-up-and-play experience.

Pinball FX2/Zen Pinball 2:XBLA/PSN

Zen Studios has done an amazing job of supporting their pinball simulation with tons of Marvel tables and other random tables here and there. If you still haven't checked out these awesome pinball games, buy a table (or 4) and enjoy!

Bloodforge: XBLA

A great 3D hack 'n slash with well implemented combat. The game got an awful rap for being shallow and overly-similar to similar hack 'n slashers. But it's a quality game in its own right. For more, please see my previous blog post about Bloodforge.

Quarrel: XBLA

Quarrel combines parts of Scrabble with elements of Risk and makes for one of the best word games around. Reasonably prices at 400 MSP, Quarrel can make for many hours of wordplay fun.

PART 2 COMING SOON




Posted Image

Looking over my recent blog posts, I feel like I've been a little bit too negative in posting about games that I don't really care for. So to buck that trend, here are some of my favorite games that I played in 2012.

Note that not all of them released in 2012. As a CAG, I never buy games on release, so a lot of the games I played in 2012 weren't actually released in 2012, especially retail games. These are just some of my favorites that I played over the year. Games that weren't released in 2012 will be marked with an asterisk (*).


Asura's Wrath: :360: :ps3:

One of my favorite games that did release in 2012. QTE's are rarely ever enjoyable, but Asura's Wrath did a good job of implementing them smartly and they made sense for the most part. The action, on the other hand, was top caliber. The game was broken up very well, 10-20 minute action scenes followed by a few minutes of a pretty good cutscenes, and then right back to the action.

At this point, third-person brawlers are probably my favorite genre (Bayonetta is still my favorite game of this generation) and Asura's Wrath did a unique and great job.

Borderlands 2: :360: :ps3:

Borderlands 2 is just more Borderlands, which is a great thing. The gameplay in Borderlands 2 is perfectly precise and the "just one more mission" aspect is just as addictive as it was in the first game. A quality sequel to one of my 4 favorite current generation games, which I like to call the 4 B's. (Bayonetta, Batman: Arkham Asylum, Bioshock, Borderlands)

BloodRayne Betrayal*: XBLA/PSN

A quality 2D hack and slash that generated a "love it or hate it" opinion among gamers. I personally loved the 2D action and great control scheme, though the platforming did leave something to be desired.

Rayman Origins*: :360: :ps3: :wii: PSVita

An absolutely beautiful 2D platformer. This was actually my introduction into the world of Rayman, and I'm glad I finally took the plunge. As a huge platforming fan, the challenge level always felt right (challenging but not masochistic). Disappointing that the sequel is currently only slated as a WiiU title.

From Dust*: XBLA/PSN

From Dust is a God-sim where you have control over the "breath" of life, and hence can reshape landscapes by moving around earth, water, lava, etc. The goal of each level is to make it possible for your followers to complete specific missions by creating safe paths and villages for them. I went into this game with a lot of doubts, but had a blast trying different ways to complete each level.

Toy Soldiers: Cold War*: XBLA

The sequel to one of my absolute favorite XBLA games, Toy Soldiers: CW is a hybrid tower defense game set in the age of the Cold War. While I actually felt like it was a letdown compared to the original, the core of the game still makes for great, addictive gameplay.

Z0MB1ES (on teh ph0ne): Windows Phone

One of my favorite Windows Phone games, this is actually a port of the XBL Indie Game I MAED A GAM3 W1TH Z0MBIES 1N IT!!!1 along with 2 other games from developer Ska Studios. Simplistic but well made twin-stick shooting and a goofy soundtrack are enough to make it a great pick-up-and-play experience.

Pinball FX2/Zen Pinball 2:XBLA/PSN

Zen Studios has done an amazing job of supporting their pinball simulation with tons of Marvel tables and other random tables here and there. If you still haven't checked out these awesome pinball games, buy a table (or 4) and enjoy!

Bloodforge: XBLA

A great 3D hack 'n slash with well implemented combat. The game got an awful rap for being shallow and overly-similar to similar hack 'n slashers. But it's a quality game in its own right. For more, please see my previous blog post about Bloodforge.

Quarrel: XBLA

Quarrel combines parts of Scrabble with elements of Risk and makes for one of the best word games around. Reasonably prices at 400 MSP, Quarrel can make for many hours of wordplay fun.

PART 2 COMING SOON
Thanks for posting this. I've found that you give pretty fair insights as far as game critiques go so I'll definitely take a couple things for a spin on this list. I was fortunate enough to snag Asura's Wrath from the $10 xbox store sale so that'll be high on my next 'what should I play next?' list.

I really want From Dust to be a spiritual sequel to Populous: The Beginning but I know in my heart that it isn't. Nonetheless, I really want to play it.
A lot of good choices. Haven't considered my contenders yet, but Borderlands 2 and Rayman Origins are definitely going to be there. I'm also surprised at how much I've enjoyed Zen Pinball. I've sunk so many hours into that. I have From Dust on PC and while it is challenging as hell, it's as equally rewarding.

Since you already made a "hate it/love it" provision for Bloodrayne, lol, I won't bore you with my opinion of it, but let's just say it's no longer on my HDD.

*You may be the only person with a "favorite games" list this year...with no mention of Journey or Walking Dead. Not that I disagree with your exclusion of the latter, though.
@ Handsome Pete - Thanks. From Dust is really good, I haven't ever heard of that other game so I can't compare it.

Unfortunately I don't think it's ever dropped to 50% off on either PSN or XBLA, so I think there are a lot of people on CAG that haven't had a chance to check it out yet.
@breakfuss - Zen Pinball is a great "just one more round" game that ends up sucking hours from my life. Especially now that I have it on my Vita as well, it's great to play while (kinda) watching TV. The variety of tables makes it so that the game never feels old.

Haha it took me a while to really start enjoying Bloodrayne, and I'll admit there are 2 sections that are absolutely moronic, and both involve the platforming, which admittedly isn't great within the game.

Yeah, Journey and Walking Dead will be nowhere near this list. I think it can be mostly attributed to the fact that I put gameplay above everything else in games. If a game doesn't have engrossing gameplay, it doesn't ever stand out to me. Many many people will laud Journey and Walking Dead, but I doubt many of them would try to argue that gameplay is one of the strong points in either game.
Nice collection but still there are so many good games in 2012 that are good for playing.