10 Best Games for Christmas 2010By Shaon, Gaea News Network
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
This has been a whirlwind of a year for games at large. Now all is left is to dust up the archives and decide on which games from this year is actually worth your dollar. If one thing is for certain this year had no dearth of variety. From the dusty old west to futuristic space marine and culminating to some good old fashioned conspiracy theories (not to mention one very angry God). We had some interesting projects like Heavy Rain which tried to forge an emotional relationship with the players and a totally awesome sleeper hit which advocated the usage of corny oneliners in slow motion. We had a driving “simulator” and a Roman Holiday. All in all this was one of those years when the game industry decided to look beyond the labors of regurgitated formula year after year and truly refine the experience for the fans of the series. If you are in a fix regarding the games you ought to play this Christmas we are here to help you.ARTICLE CONTINUED BELOW
1. Red Dead Redemption
Rockstar’s pet sequel to the mediocre Red Dead revolver had many people arguing that this is going to be just another Grand Theft Auto installment in the Wild West. I was actually quite relieved when their skepticism was put to rest with the games release. John Marston, the protagonist of the game will go down in the history books as Rockstar’s most well meaning protagonists. Well, that is a great achievement considering that this is a studio that specializes in selling their games by the truckload by the virtue of their largely anti heroic protagonists. Can you really argue that Vice City would be the same without Tommy Vercetti? They amazed the gamers with the virtue of the epic story and the novel setting. For me, the most personal favorite moment was when I was traveling into the sunset on my trusty steed and slowed down just to soak in the atmosphere. It was then I realized that the world of this particular game was more living and organic than any open world game I have played. This probably is the most unique experiences players can treat yourself for this Christmas.
Platforms: XBOX 360,PS3
2. Starcraft II : Wings of liberty
Blizzard showed the entire world that it is indeed possible to improve on perfection with this title. The game that caused a culture revolution in Korea really had some hype to live upto. Things were not really looking all cozy for the fans of the series as Blizzard decided to split up the campaign into 3 parts and the omission of the ever important LAN play for the series was not really well received. But against all odds this game delivered on all the promises. The campaign is huge and the amount of polish will actually validate Blizzards decision to ultimately split the game. A wealth of options for customizing the army meant that Blizzard the best in the business of making RTS games were also incorporating in the wealth of RPG features. Blizzard’s already robust Battle.net service ensured that the multiplayer suite did not falter because of the absence of LAN support and eventually succeeded. Blizzard did not try to do anything out of the ordinary with this title but they did well to build on the laurels of the last game.
3. Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood
This game was sure not to top any list from the moment it was announced. The Assassin’s Creed II was chock full of content and had an expansive story that spanned decades but no one really believed that Ubisoft could top that off and that too within a year. You know what they did. The game i stuffed yet again full of many snide references to a history of times people have forgotten. For players who were concerned with the previous games simplistic combat systems it was a great relief when the new gameplay ironed out one of the few imperfections that plagued the series. The multiplayer makes the whole package complete. It proves its place in this list just by the virtue of some irresistible content that has been crammed into the game. Get this and you probably wont need another game for two months.
A resolute product of a single man’s imagination may still be in its alpha stage but it is as good a game as any in this list that you can get yourself. The gameplay on offer here is virtually endless and even a bootlegged prehistoric computer can play it. Minecraft triumphs because of the sheer creative force that goes into this indie sensation will triumph any of the multi million budgeted sequels any day. Players are allowed to create some insanely complex structures be it the re creation of the underwater world of rapture or the 1:1 model of starship enterprise. It essentially may be perceived as a huge open lego playground. But on the other hand the player is free to collect armor and weapons in order to ward off the zombie swarm come nightfall. Patience is the key to master the game. With multiplayer tagged on to it this product is the flag bearer for innovation for Gaming this year. One incredible information is that some one actually made a working 16-bit ALU (arithmetic logic unit) designed entirely in the game.
Bungie’s swan song in the Halo universe was not going to take any challenge lightly. They made the3 much tried and loved formula of the Halo games and made it even more refined. Microsoft will take over the franchise from now on. But the game that was destined on coming on Apple computers and one of the reasons why people buy the XBOX 360 has really come a full circle. The approach may not be innovative but Noble 6’s journey to the planet Reach had little to complain of. Well I did miss the Master Chief but the game can stand as an individual entry into the franchise. Unlike the last game the tangential plot and the barren landscapes are done with. Customization features are plenty for the title with the new credit system. You as a player will get access to credits for playing the campaign or the multiplayer. You can use these in game currency to change the way your Noble’6 will look. The amount of modes or the options for a Halo multiplayer fanatic is truly amazing. If you own an XBOX 360 you have to have this game.
Platform: XBOX 360
6.Mass Effect 2
Always count on Bioware to deliver a top notch Role playing game. Bioware gave us the incredible Dragon Age:Origins last year and this year it has upped the ante with this gem of a Role playing game. Storytelling in game has been take to new heights thanks to the title. The player assumes the role of Commander Shepard like the last game. We follow his struggle to ward off the threat from the Reapers, an advanced set of robots. Bioware effectively creates a situation when the player actually tries to play on and finish the game and find out what happens to his co patriots. Bioware gives you the power to choose the characters gender and determine the fate of the galaxy as the game progresses. Each of the niggles with Mass Effect 1 including the dreaded elevator rides have been fixed. The skill system and the inventory has been overhauled.
Platform: XBOX 360, PC
7. Castlevania:Lord of Shadows
Castle vania the lord of Shadows is an epic game. It is the sort of game that forces to look beyond the criticisms that has been leveled against it in the popular press. I know many of you might be wondering how this game gets a mention in this list. But the arguments like the gameplay is derivative and invisible walls don’t really fit the bill. In the age of the Call Of Dutys and Medal Of Honors make millions by recycling the same set of cliches and formula for years. The art direction is gorgeous and so is the combat. The game is too beautiful to witness in motion. Add a few epic boss fights and the incredible ending to make the game truly special. 20 entertaining hours are virtually guaranteed.
Platform Ps3, XBOX 360.
8.Call Of Duty: Black Ops
I know I just bashed the game. But when a game ships that many copies it generally means that the game does something right. The single player is steeps well in to the depths of ludicrousness. That said the game houses some pretty intense moments. The franchise is a phenomenon no doubts about it but it is a must have just because of the popularity of the multiplayer. Modern Warfare 2 had pretty serious balance issues in this aspect and this game has fixed most of them. The campaign never loses focus and is relentless in an entertaining way. The graphics as expected are top notch. If you get the game get the 360 version given you have the option. The ps3 version has quite a few graphical issues and the persistent multiplayer lag in most places.
Platform: PC,XBOX 360 andPS3
Shinji Mikami knows how to make explosive games. This one rarely disappoints. The run and gun mechanics have been tuned to perfection for the title. The gears style cover mechanics has the right amount of stickiness. I missed the multiplayer for this title but all the 6 hours you get out of this title truly warrant the price being paid for. What’s more you can now get this title at an incredible low price in places like Shopto or Zavvi. If you manage to get a copy you will definitely enjoy each and every moment in the game. The frame rate never dips even when there are hundreds of enemies vying for your blood on screen. The story could use some polish though.
Platform: PS3,XBOX 360
10. God Of War 3
We could never have enough of Kratos. From the PS2 days when he first ripped a Hydra to the quite excellent second installment when he was betrayed by Zeus. We were promised chaos in the end by Santa Monica and it was delivered. This game features the best opening sequence in gaming history of this gen. The combat feels brutally gratifying and so does the entire journey. Its a pity that the game had to be so short. The game can be marked as an epic finale to an equally momentous franchise. The game may be short of content but not quality.
Platform : PS3
If you have any other contenders for the best games to buy for christmas leave comments.
Tags: Activision, Assassin's Creed Brotherhood, Bioware, Blizzard, Call of Duty Black Ops, Castlevania, God Of War 3, Halo Reach, Mass Effect 2, minecraft, Platinum Games, PS3, Red Dead Redemption, Rockstar, Sony, Ubisoft, Vanquish, xbox 360