I’m still somewhat in a state of disbelief at the sort of quality 2010 has imbued upon us. Mass Effect 2, God of War 3, Bioshock 2, Final Fantasy XIII, Heavy Rain, Battlefield: Bad Company 2- okay, we could go on for a lot longer. We here at Gamer Limit are all about letting you little buggers have your say, no matter how ludicrous, so why not come in and state your case about the best game of 2010 so far.
Hit the jump to check out a few of the top contenders, but by all means name your personal favorite for Quarter 1 in 2010, and explain just why it should be recognized as the best of the year so far. Also feel free to castigate me for omitting your pretty little 2010 gem.
Mass Effect 2
Released: January 26
By overhauling several major features of the original game, BioWare was able to merge an intense shooter almost seamlessly into RPG gaming. Mass Effect 2 initially caused weeping amongst the inventory-loving fanboys, but most gamers accepted the changes as a necessary progression to the series.
ME2 has been my number one game of 2010 since it was released, and it doesn’t look like it will be loosening its grip on me any time soon. With hotter (read: less annoying) love interests, beautiful locations, and one helluva kickass ending, it’ll take an almost faultless game to knock Mass Effect 2 off the top of the list.
Final Fantasy XIII
Developer: Square Enix
Released: March 9 (North America)
Having been bored by all previous iterations, I wasn’t exactly bulging in my pants when FFXIII hit stores. Don’t get me wrong, I completely understand the appeal and why it is such a global phenomenon, but there comes a time when a series just needs to stop.
Depending on who you talk to, that time has come and gone. Although it implemented a new fighting system that (apparently) allowed the game to flow better, the general consensus that you need to sink at least 10 hours into the game before it actually starts to become enjoyable is too much of a dealbreaker for me.
God of War 3
Developer: Santa Monica Studio
Released: March 16
If there’s a better opening sequence to a video game than GoW3’s Kratos and Gaia versus Poseidon and his minions, then I’d like to hear about it. After completing the game and watching most of the vid-docs, I was able to appreciate the epic scale of the task Stig Asmussen and his team faced.
The game had its moments of insane ridiculousness, and the ending was far too romantic for my liking, but it’s hard to imagine any other action title this year coming close to God of War 3 – even Bayonetta.
Released: February 9
I’ll be honest, I may not be the best advocate for the BioShock series. The first one bored me to tears in a way that only the Total War games have been able to, and I am still at a loss for how it has been hailed as one of the most influential first-person shooters of all time. Still, I know when I’m outnumbered, and I’ll try to keep my big mouth shut.
BioShock 2 is in a similar predicament to Final Fantasy XIII: split opinions. I imagine that most fans of the series don’t want to admit that BioShock 2 is inferior to the original – you know, just in case 2K are scouring gaming blogs for new staff members. Have it your way.
Battlefield: Bad Company 2
Developer: EA DICE
Released: March 2
The Gamer Limit staff had a period of several weeks playing first the demo and the then full version of Bad Company 2 online. Most – like myself – hadn’t enjoyed that much multiplayer fun since the days of Halo.
I honestly feel sorry for gamers who have yet to experience the brilliant team-based system in BC2. As you wile away the time jacking up your kill/death ratio Alan Garner-style, I’ll be enjoying some back stabbing brilliance with people who actually enjoy the game.
Developer: Quantic Dream
Released: February 23
Unique gaming experience, or 10-hour film flop? The jury is still out with many gamers on whether Heavy Rain lived up to expectations. In many respects, Quantic Dream pulled off a Molyneux by building their game up to be a life-changing experience, and then simply handing us a unique spin on the serial killer story.
I loved my first (and only) playthrough of Heavy Rain. After a slow start, things started to pick up, and soon I found myself sweating at the terrifying situations my characters found themselves in. There are many lessons the developer can learn from this release, but best of 2010 so far? Maybe not.
Developer: Platinum Games
Released: January 5 (North America)
From the moment I downloaded the Bayonetta demo, I was in love. Video games have been looking for a badass, sexy, and altogether murderous female protagonist ever since Lara Croft went batshit crazy. Bayonetta was like a teenage boy’s bottle of lube.
But surprise surprise, the game is actually good! With an arsenal of weapons, far too many moves to memorize, and a level of difficulty that would make even Chris Carter carve “FUCK YOU, SEGA!” into his skin, Bayonetta started the year off in the best way possible.
The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom
Developer: The Odd Gentlemen
Released: February 17
The only arcade title on the list, but a worthy addition. P.B. Winterbottom shocked most gamers with not only its cheap price tag, but it’s addictive complexity.
As all good puzzlers do, The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom lulls you into a false sense of security before hurling a pie directly into your Charlie Browns. Much like Splosion Man did last year, P.B. Winterbottom won us over with its originality and uncanny ability to frustrate the hell out of us.
Dragon Age: Origins – Awakenings
Released: March 16
There have been few expansion packs worthy of mention in my many years as a gamer. And while BioWare has been known to pump out god-awful DLC just for the moolah, thank the maker they have a little more tact when it comes to complete expansions.
Awakening was a brilliant way to keep fans interested in Dragon Age lore, while at the same time giving the player an entire new way to play the game. Now in the realm of Amaranthine, you are given 10+ hours worth of brand new missions to fall in love with the world of Dragon Age all over again.
No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle
Developer: Grasshopper Manufacture
Released: January 26
Settle down, Wii lovers, we didn’t forget about you. While I haven’t been able to play this one yet (since Australia decided that releasing it in the middle of the year would be better for sales), I have been assured by many-a-friend that NMH2 is definitely the pick of all 2010 Wii releases so far.
So perhaps it’s better if you explain to me why it’s so utterly fab.