Well it’s that time of year again where we look back on what happened in the last year and look forward to the new year before us. After many hours of head-scratching, going over the 800 games released this year, thining out the list, making cut backs, heart wrenching choises – we have done it – we have compiled the list, then gave it the green light – As the old saying goes, there can be only one.
So, without further ado, here is the Gamer Euphoria Staff picks for ‘Game Of The Year 2009′.
Luke – Assassin’s Creed II
Assassin’s Creed II improved so much on the first by taking out the annoyances and placing in a lot more fun features. The story takes off well after the events of the first and a new main character seems likeable, named Ezio. When I first entered Ezio’s world, I found myself gazing into the landscapes – beautiful visuals of a beautiful era in Italy. Even more beautiful at night, if you head to the right places. It seems rather polished and you begin to notice all these tiny details as you play – the building details, the historical notes etc that you come across.
This is what the sequel treatment should be like. Improve greatly on the previous title, introduce new and worthy features (such as the economy, tombs, races), whilst welcoming users new and loyal. A fluid control system, a fair balance of difficulty is sure to surprise people yet to discover Assassin’s Creed II. Don’t think this is over-hyped…think it’s what the sequel treatment should be. Once you’re done with the story in Assassin’s Creed II, you kinda crave more but unfortunately you’re going to have to wait it out (much like the same feeling I had for completing the first title).
Tom – Mirror’s Edge (PC)
If any of you read my recent Batman: Arkham Asylum review, you would probably assume that it was my favourite game of 2009. However, you would be wrong in thinking that, and you should be ashamed of yourself for doing so. Digressions aside, in a shocking turn of events, my favourite game of last year was actually Mirror’s Edge (the PC version. And before you ask, Mirror’s Edge PC was released in January of last year, so it does qualify).
Seeing as I have always had a penchant for free running, but never really had the desire to actually go free running and risk breaking my legs/completing a session of exercise, Mirror’s Edge seemed like the perfect game for me. Everything from the beautifully vivid colours of the city contrasting its violently totalitarian nature, to the way that the game can get unhealthily frustrating, yet fun, to the superb ambient-electronic soundtrack, really do help the game sell itself. Sure, it has a sizeable catalogue of errors and hiccups, but if you are able to look past all of that, Mirror’s Edge may just, if you allow it to, blow your mind.
Andy – Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
While I was kicking myself in the ankles for picking the ‘obvious choice’ game for this feature. Though, without it the feature would lack clarity. As stated in last years review for the game, I stated that Modern Warfare 2 excels at “Keeping you at the edge of your seat, while keeping the story unpredictable and unforgettable.” I stick to that quote, without a doubt in my mind.
It was always going to be hard for a game to follow in the footsteps of Call of Duty 4 – but MW2 does it with such grace and breathtaking sequences. When the lights are on bright, Infinity Ward brought to the grand-stage a game that both satisfies veteran fans, bring new innovative ideas to the table, while keeping the core elements that made Call of Duty 4 a success. Coming from an enthusiast that did not care for the franchise before MW2, calling this my Game-Of-The-Year says it all, really.
Jim – 1 vs 100 (XBLA)
Given the host of great games this year, I’d have to say my personal favorite this year is 1 vs. 100 on XBLA. Though the gameshow genre has been around forever, 1 v. 100 gave the gaming community some fresh ideas that really should permeate the gaming culture. This was the first game that I’m aware of to be scheduled like TV programming, which is quite wild. Think about it, you want to play Halo, you put in the disc and boom, you’re playing. If you want to get a 1 v. 100 fix, you have to find the schedule and set aside time for it. Though I kinda get the short end of the stick with my personal hours conflicting with the shows hours, it’s still fun.
The level of interaction between players during the game is great fun. You can help or hinder your buddies who are playing with you, or just have a good time discussing the obviously wrong answers the game can give. Though the number one reason this is game of the year for me is that after all the achievements are won, you can still have fun going back and playing again. Looking ahead, let’s hope we have more games that are just fun to play with your friends, ’cause that’s what gaming is all about.
Lee – Assassin’s Creed II
Remember Assassin’s Creed back in 2007? After 3 years of development this was looking to be one of the best games you would ever see featuring lethal stunts, a huge free roaming world and the ability to climb on anything. So after months of hype and excited fans, we were all a little let down by just a few hours of gameplay, repetitive assassinations and a story line that was as far-fetched as pigs conquering Mars.
Assassin’s Creed 2 is everything its predecessor should have been. Gripping story, intense action and non-repetitive missions all add up to create a brilliant experience, and when you finally realise that you’re never going to figure out what the ending meant, you’ll be raring to go for a sequel. This game is brilliant and can be enjoyed by everybody; it’s something fresh, fun and fantastic so if you haven’t already got it, go buy it now.