Do I Only Have Time For Exclusives?
Believe it or not, I don't have a heck of a lot of time. And if anyone thinks reviewing crap games is always "fun," they obviously haven't done it for an extended period of time. Furthermore, with the ever-increasing average age of the gamer these days, avid players have less and less time to spend with their favorite hobby. Hence, we have to be even more selective with the games we purchase...well, I've always been far more selective than most, but I'm starting to notice a trend.
I really don't care about the platform or the developer or publisher; I only want to play the best of the best. I only have time for the best of the best. But over the past year or so, I've started to realize that my "must-have" list or my "most-anticipated" list consists of an increasing number of exclusives for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. What were my favorite titles last year? Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, Killzone 2, inFamous, Flower, Assassin's Creed II, and Dragon Age: Origins. I should also mention that although I didn't like it as much as others, Demon's Souls was indeed a fantastic game and one of the best of 2009, and although it was obviously nothing more than an expansion (meaning it felt insanely dated), I completed Halo 3: ODST. Outside of ACII and Origins, the trend is obvious.
And what about 2010? By far my favorite of the year thus far is Heavy Rain and I'm assuming God of War III will quickly be right at or near the top of the list very soon. Then there's Gran Turismo 5, Alan Wake, MLB 10: The Show, Splinter Cell: Conviction, SOCOM 4, and Halo Reach. Yes, I'll be plenty interested in Red Dead Redemption and Bioshock 2 was fantastic but the further we go in this generation, the more I'm starting to leave multiplats behind. Now, of course there are great multiplatform games. There's Battlefield: Bad Company 2, Final Fantasy XIII, and at some point, Grand Theft Auto V. But for the most part, I don't have time for them all and the elite games all tend to be exclusive to either the PS3 or 360. The former has most of the best exclusives available - yeah, just accept it - but the point is, I only have so much time in any given week.
I suppose the question is, do you find yourself playing more exclusives? If you have a time issue or if you had to prioritize for another reason, don't exclusives often end up at the top of your list? I mean, Uncharted 3 and Gears of War 3? Yeah, mine. Immediately. Game of the Year nominees and winners at most major sources in 2009 and probably in 2010? Lots of exclusives, no? And I'd also like to add that it seems more than a little likely that for the third year in a row, the overall Game of the Year will almost undeniably be a PS3 exclusive: MGS4 in 2008, Uncharted 2 in 2009, and God of War III in 2010? I'd also lobby for Heavy Rain and Gran Turismo 5, and my hopes for Alan Wake are super high, but I think GoWIII is the obvious choice right now.
3/5/2010 Ben Dutka