The 2009 Endies: Day 1
Good Start Award
This award goes to the game that I most enjoyed starting, but never finished. To qualify for this award, a game must: 1. Make a fantastic first impression, and 2. Make me regret that I have not, and may never, finish it. Please note that me being regretful is an objective state determined by the number of times that I say "rad" and/or "'splosion" when talking about the game in question.
And the Endy goes to...
Winner: Beyond Good & Evil (PS2)
- Runner-Up: Halo 3: ODST (360)
This was actually a pretty tight race. I started off the year with grand ambitions, hoping to record an entire play-through of BG&E and share it with all of you. That fell through when I was gently reminded by my curriculum that I'm in medical school, not grade school. BG&E was the victim of my disillusion and I weep for it. I loved every minute that I spent with the game, yet I inexplicably have not picked it up since recording the first 60 minutes of gameplay, which included numerous rad 'splosions. The graphics are fantastic for their time, the story is interesting, and the gameplay mechanics work together like an assembly line. Yet the question remains: Will I come back to it this year? No one really knows, not even me. Maybe God, but he's omnipotent, so that makes sense. But honestly, I really hope I do. I don't want it to win another Endy in this category next year.
ODST makes a strong case for this Endy, but I know that I'll finish it in the new year. I loved my time with the game, and it's still new enough to be relevant. The way the story unfolds is a lot of fun and the music is simply beautiful. We shall surely meet again. Hence, the runner-up position.
Glass Half-Empty Award
This award goes to the game that lives on on the razor's edge, teetering between objectively good and painfully average. To qualify for this award, a game must: 1. Be a quality product with no glaring technical deficiencies, and 2. Make me struggle to come up with positive adjectives to describe it. Positive adjectives include, but are not limited to, "rad" and "'splosioney."
And the Endy goes to...
Winner: Turok (360)
- Runner-Up: Bejeweled (XBLA)
Oh Turok, you bleed gray. You're not good, you're not bad, you're just really, really mediocre. Not even the soothing sounds of Ron Perlman's angelic voice could save you from the extinction of my interest. Sure, killing dinos in close combat was fun for the first hour, but after that I wanted more; I wanted something with some meat in it; I wanted a Brontosaurus burger with all the toppings, not just some seared Tyranno flesh. But instead of satiating my hunger with a main course, you served me appetizers of repetitive levels with a side salad of tired gunplay. We could have been great together, Turok. We could have been great... ;-(
The runner-up is a borderline acceptable XBLA game known as Bejeweled. Sure the game was an internet sensation, but it offers very little to console veterans. It's perfectly competent and does exactly what it advertises; the problem is that it's just not fun. The free XBLA launch title, Hexic HD, is a sparkling diamond when compared to this moissanite pretender. Sure that game was better on the PC as well, but at least it retained some semblance of joy in it's transition. In fact, Bejeweled only avoids winning this award because I realized its dullness so immediately in my play time.
That's all for today folks. I'll be back tomorrow with more outlandish awards (which will become steadily more boring as I realize how much time I've spent writing these blogs, but just ignore that fact and pretend they're marvelous... and also ignore this last sentence... sure I could just delete it, but... um... bye!)