2010's Best: Top 5 "Shame On You For Missing It!"
Few hardcore gamers can play every game on their "to do" list in any given year. It's just a frustrating fact.
This is why we all have priority lists and why certain titles inevitably fall on such lists; we must make room for the most anticipated. This is why you may have pushed aside something like Bioshock 2 as you saved your cash for the likes of Red Dead Redemption, God of War III and Final Fantasy XIII. But there were more than a few titles you really shouldn't have missed in 2010 and if you've got a few gift cards burning a hole in your wallet, we've got some "catch-up" suggestions for you. Here are the Top 5 "Shame On You For Missing It!" titles of 2010:
5. Yakuza 3
Even though it routinely earns plenty of critical acclaim, the series just doesn't excel on the sales charts in this country. Admittedly, it caters to a smaller niche market; those who really like Japanese culture and don't mind subtitles. But regardless of personal preferences in setting and style, Yakuza 3 remains a solid, entertaining title that gives you plenty of bang for your buck. Featuring another surprisingly emotional and in-depth storyline, a ton of brutal hand-to-hand combat (for which the franchise is known), and even a bit of exploration, the game is well worth your attention. Oh, and Kazuma Kiryu is a super huge bad-ass.
4. Bioshock 2
As I mentioned above, the game's February 9 release date gave many forward-thinking gamers pause. March was gonna be huge - and oh, it was - and it was important to conserve funds. The title did relatively well on the sales charts, but this is more geared to the PSXE community: we know FPSs aren't exactly popular around here and even though Bioshock 2 is part-RPG, it still looks like a regular shooter on the surface. Secondly, because the original came late to the PlayStation 3, Sony fans are, consequently, a little late to the Bioshock party. Therefore, a whole lot of PS3 copies of the game went unsold and we're telling you...that's a mistake.
3. Soldner-X 2: Final Prototype
Many PSN games often fly under the radar, especially when compared to the big-budget productions, but this is one PSN exclusive you shouldn't have missed. Sure, Joe Danger is almost a shoo-in for downloadable game of the year (and arguably the best digital game to date), but Soldner-X 2: Final Prototype is an extremely polished, oddly addicting side-scrolling shooter that keeps you riveted. Vastly superior to the original, this sequel is simultaneously one of the prettiest and most fulfilling PSN titles currently available. You can nab it for a relatively cheap price, too, so don't waste another minute...you'll thank us, especially if you love old-school arcade space shooters.
And speaking of shooters, Raven's super fun FPS is absolutely one of the year's most satisfying experiences. Singularity surprised the hell out of me (2009's sub-par Wolfenstein couldn't possibly have been made by the same team, could it?), and I completed it with a smile on my face. The combination of rock solid shooter mechanics and cool time manipulation skills worked exceedingly well, and even the length didn't disappoint. The story was more than passable for the genre and for the record, there is no cooler weapon than the Seeker. Even if FPSs aren't your bag, there's a darn good possibility you'll have a blast with this one.
Speaking of surprises, no game knocked me off my feet quite as much as nail'd. If you check around, you'll see similar viewpoints: critics were just plain shocked at the game's sky-high (pun intended) fun factor and outrageous sense of speed. The track design is almost unparalleled this generation - just try it if you don't believe me - and you will find that it's very, very difficult to drop the controller. It sort of came out of nowhere and unfortunately, it had to contend with the fall juggernauts. It's unlikely that it brought in a ton of cash and that's too bad; it's just so insane from top to bottom. Besides, it's a nice contrast to the more serious titles of the late-2010 period.
12/27/2010 9:12:53 PM Ben Dutka