As we head into 2009, we already see some heavy hitters coming our way. With Killzone 2 closing in and Resident Evil 5 stirring up plenty of controversy, we certainly have our hands full for quarter 1. So to slow things down a bit, I took the time to assemble a list of what I feel to be the genre-pushing releases this generation. Enjoy!
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
Nothing satisfies quite like Metal Gear, and with the fourth iteration, that doesn’t change at all; if anything, it’s the most improved game we’ve ever seen, and with all that Metal Gear has to live up to, that’s saying quite a lot. This generation of gaming has yet to produce something as lively and exhilarating as Metal Gear Solid 4 was, though admittedly some games do come close, none have been able brave the splendor that is MGS4.
Kojima set many high benchmarks with MGS4, and proved that games could be considered a viable storytelling medium, while also offering a sizable gameplay experience. We here at Gamer Limit salute Old Snake, for in his final hour, he changed gaming.
Super Mario Galaxy
In 2007, Super Mario Galaxy stirred up quite a lot of hype; it was the exclusive reason to own a Nintendo Wii. Not only did the game mark itself as the greatest Mario title, but served as one of the greatest platformers we’ve ever encountered. We know Mario games have never been known for their storyline, but rather the unconditional enjoyment they produce.
It’s been an odd 27 years since Mario first debuted in 1981, back then he was but a pile of pixels on a mission. Now, after many years of misadventure, he has evolved into a high-poly icon for an entire generation to praise. With Super Mario Galaxy, you can’t help but be enthralled with this lovable little plumber. So, if you have some spare time, two thumbs, and a Wii-mote, we suggest you check this one out.
It would be a crime against nature to mention Mario without the likes of this platforming masterpiece. LittleBigPlanet was probably the first game exclusive to the Playstation 3 that utterly relied on pure fun. Complete with a comprehensive level editor, strong online community, and quite possibly the cutest 3-dimensional deity man ever conceived… Sackboy.
The premise of LittleBigPlanet boils down to three key elements; play, create, and share. With some 50+ story levels, and 100,000+ community levels, there is plenty of play to go around. Creating is the meat of the game, there’s nothing quite like publishing your very first level for all the other happy gadders. Finally, sharing is what makes LittleBigPlanet so pleasurable, if you don’t have your friend there beside you while you push on through the creative landscape, then what else is there?
Critics slapped a great big “mediocre” sticker on this one, but despite is luke-warm reception, this game brought about a much needed change in the FPS world. What separated this game from other shooters was the fact that it wasn’t actually a shooter at all. Sure, you had the ability to fire, but in the long run, it was much more a waste of time to actually bother with it, running away proved much more effective.
Now, even I had my doubts about this game prior to its release, and don’t think the thought didn’t run through my mind that a game reliant on running could never be very intense; but how wrong I was! The style of running in Mirror’s edge is based upon Parkour or “Free-running” and frankly, it makes for quite an interesting foundation to Mirror’s Edge’s gameplay. Climbing buildings, jumping off them, then climbing them again… it’s an absolute blast!
It would be fruitless to argue whether this game is a straight shooter or survival-horror, because in the world of Rapture, uncertainty is key. From its initial announcement to the anticipated Playstation port, Bioshock has garnered more acclaim than any other game this generation. Even a year into its lifetime, it still feels fresh, and chilling. While graphically the game may be starting to dwindle, the awe-inspiring gameplay still holds merit.
I’m sure it can be unanimously agreed upon that Bioshock is one of greatest games ever developed. Its mature story and dark premise was since unparalleled by any other game at the time. It made great use of Epic’s Unreal Engine 3, utilizing some of the best video game water effects seen to date. Rapture was bold, and unique, each environment had a inimitable atmosphere; showcasing a wide variety of locations.
In the spirit of Oblivion IV: The Elder Scrolls, Bethesda Softworks traded in the medieval setting for a post-apocalyptic landscape. With nightmarish creatures wandering a beautifully carved D.C. wasteland, and a breathtaking cast full of colorful characters, it’s quite hard to actually find any flaws with this game. We guarantee it will make even the most stubborn RPG hater wet their pants.
The game has received widespread commendation for its innovative use of environment and exceptional gameplay. It’s a certainty that this game does the RPG genre justice, and then some.
We are still able to find a solace with these definitive games after so long; it’s because of them that were able to keep our nerve in check while 2009 continues to pump out quality titles like petrol. Kudos to the developers of these listed games, you have set the bar high!
Disclaimer: This list was formed in no particular order
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