Kevin VanOrd has the best top 10 list, no over-hyped game in the list if you know what I mean.. But I would exchange Spec Ops with Max Payne in that list.
The GameSpot editors reveal their personal top 10 lists for 2012.
Chris Watters, Editor Follow
When I was a kid, my mom always forced me to write thank-you notes for every gift I received. After miraculously managing to overcome my perennial procrastination and professed loathing of the task, she would encourage me to not only thank the person for his or her gift but also elaborate on why I liked it, what I looked forward to doing with it, and so on. Though I may not have appreciated it then, I've since found that this thoroughness actually makes me more thankful for the gift in question, and also thankful for the relationship I have with the person I'm writing to. With that in mind, I've decided to write thank-you notes to my top ten games of 2012. They might not be able to read them, what with being inanimate objects and all, but it'll help me be more grateful for another great year of playing games.
10. Trials Evolution,
When I started playing you after loving your predecessor, Trials HD, I was expecting to once again grapple with fiendishly challenging tracks and get sucked in to heated leaderboard battles. Sure enough, I did, and it was awesome. What I wasn't expecting was to do all this through the beautiful countryside, in an eerie castle, and around a crazy baseball diamond! Man, you really outdid yourself with environmental and track design, and I want you to know how much I appreciate it. But you didn't just let your creativity shine through; you pointed the spotlight at the creativity of your community as well, and that was really cool of you. Even though you make my hands sweat more than any other game, I still love picking up the controller and going for a few rides. Thanks for a great year! Sincerely, Chris.
I have to admit, when we first met, I was a bit baffled. You worked quite a bit differently from regular old Monday Night Combat, and it took a bunch of matches (and some forum reading) before I started to get my bearings. I'm glad I stuck with it though, because the ebb and flow of your battles led to some epic struggles. I'm thankful that you have such a diverse roster of pros, because their various abilities create some fun strategies and encourage teamwork. For a few months there, you provided a great way to finish out my work day, and even if my team didn't win, I always went home with a smile on my face. And thanks for having such a lighthearted sense of humor! It's nice to play a shooter that doesn't take things too seriously. Fondly, Chris.
8. Dear The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings,
Thank you, first and foremost, for coming to the Xbox 360. Sitting on my couch and adventuring across the Northern Kingdoms late into the night was a wonderful way to deprive myself of sleep for weeks on end. Though I had spent similar hours with Skyrim just a few months prior, you had so many intriguing characters and great conversations that I was immediately captivated. I'm thankful for Geralt, Triss, Dandelion, Zoltan, Iorveth, Roche (sort of), and all the other humans and non-humans that make your world so fascinating. Your quest scripting, world design, and dialogue were so, so good, and it didn't hurt that your combat was a lot of fun. Dziekuje, Chris.
7. Dear Journey,
Though there are a lot of pretty sights to behold in countless video game realms, I think you are beautiful in a very special way. The textures of cloth and sand, the lovely color palette, and the elegance of your animation all come together to create something magical. Thank you for transporting me to a wonderful world, and for giving me things to do there that don't involve killing. As you can see from the rest of the games on my list, I'm not averse to violence in video games, but I really appreciated the opportunity to play in a peaceful way. Serenely, Chris.
6. Dear XCOM: Enemy Unknown,
I was really hoping for a chance to dive into a tactical challenge this year, and you provided the perfect outlet. Thank you for your methodical combat, which made me more tense than any of the fast-paced shooters on this list. Thank you for giving me a lot of powerful ways to improve my home base, but being stingy enough with resources that I had to do some careful planning. Even after I had to discard hours of play because of a few bad moves, I never got mad at you, because you were teaching me the things I needed to know to survive and succeed. Respectfully yours, Chris.
5. Dear Halo 4,
We both know I've been a Halo fan for a while, but it wasn't until I played your campaign that the story actually excited me. I think you did an excellent job with Master Chief and Cortana's relationship, and now that I'm seeing more of Dr. Halsey in Spartan Ops, I'm one happy camper (not like, in that multiplayer way, just to clarify). Thank you for giving me new reasons to love the series, and new ways to assassinate people in War Games. The tackle one is my favorite. Warmly, Chris.
4. Dear Far Cry 3,
When I sit down to play a game in the evening, I am lucky enough to have a lot of choices. Tense combat, a guided story, unfettered exploration, treasure hunting, vehicular mayhem, and open world hijinks all vie for my time. I'm usually in the mood for one of these things, and there you are offering all of them. Thank you for giving me an enticing place I can go and play however I like. Contentedly, Chris. P.S. I'm sorry I killed that manta ray that one time. They are beautiful, peaceful creatures, and it was wrong.
3. Dear Mass Effect 3,
Are we at the end already? It feels like just yesterday that I was humanity's first Spectre, fighting to gain some respect on the galactic counsel and sparring with an ornery Krogan. Now I've come to the end of civlization as we know it and said farewell to characters I love, not all of whom survived the trip. I'm so thankful to have seen this epic journey through to its conclusion. Playing as Commander Shepard for one last time was bittersweet, but also thrilling, because that lady is a total badass. For making me cackle with delight, cheer in triumph, and churn with regret (in a good way), thanks. Love, Chris.
2. Dear Dishonored,
From the moment that little Emily Kaldwin rushed up to me and gave me a big hug, you had me hooked. As I proceeded to explore Dunwall and come to know the city and her denizens (with the help of that ingenious talking heart), you entranced me. Whether I was stealthily evading my enemies, bloodily dispatching them, or meting out justice on the architects of the Empress' betrayal, you made me feel both powerful and responsible. Thank you for your wonderful world and for making me a part of it. Faithfully, Chris.
1. Dear Spelunky,
You aggravate me. You carelessly throw away all my cautious efforts and prudent preparation without blinking. You cause me to shout in anger, sigh with despair, and writhe in agony. You make me feel like an utter moron and a mouth-breathing incompetent. And now I'm supposed to thank you? Hmmm. Well, I suppose you also intrigue me with your ever-changing levels. You fascinate me with your hidden secrets. You beguile me with how you aggregate so much simplicity into a complex whole. You offer me enticing challenges, and you reward me upon completion with such pure, sweet satisfaction. You give me stories to tell and you make me feel like an adventurer. And even months after I've beaten you, I still return to your caves, time and time again. So thank you, then, for being the most compelling, most entertaining, and most exhilarating game this year. Devotedly, Chris.
@666NightsInHell It accepts box 360, PS3, and third party controllers just fine. The game was build ground up for the controls to work with a controller and there isn't a good transition to mouse and keyboard.
Either I'm continuing to drift away from enjoying video games or nothing fun or interesting came out this year. Either way, I'm saddened by it.
This comment has been deleted
@Suikogaiden Games can still be great or memorable yet have flaws to them. Also Chris is the one that reviewed the game and it isn't on his top 10 list.
Look for the podcasts Gamespot Gameplay, they talk often on there about Spec ops and what makes it good. Very good show that gives you insight to the staffs true thoughts and opinions about games.
Don't look at one review and take the number for granted. Compare it to similar games so you get an idea of how much it will appeal to you, then watch a number of reviews/impression videos on youtube. This game obviously appealed more to the person who wrote the article than gamespot's reviewer.
I?m definitely feeling this taking Q3 2013 by storm http://goo.gl/yNmuP
[i]It's also a huge criticism of the many shooters out there that glorify and justify their subject matter.[/i]
its the line of the year ...
1. Deus Ex Human Revolution, like every year since release
3.Max Payne 3
4. Planetside 2
kevin and carolyn sure are my fav reviewers , both of you should review bioshock infinte when released
If anyone ever has a problem with GS review scores, just check out these lists: Some editors don't know how to count to 10.....
Mass effect 3, Dishonored, The walking dead, Amalur, FTL, Xcom, Hotline miami and Guild Wars 2 are my games of the year.
1- The Witcher AOK EE
2 - Max Payne 3
3 - Hotline Miami
4 - Mass Effect 3
5 - Far Cry 3...and what else honestly...
1-Far Cry 32-assassin's creed 33-mass effect 34-saints row the third5-kingdom of amalur reckoning6- Max Payne 37-Sleeping Dogs8-Darksiders II9-Dishonored10- Hitman Absolution
Good ol' Chris Watters! If it hadn't been for him, I would have made a HUGE mistake and passed on Dishonored.
Thanks for that list Danny. As is so often the case I find myself agreeing with you yet again. Max Payne 3 is a real gem of 2012 as is F1 2012. I'll get round to Journey & FTL eventually...
Every blessing for the new year!!
oh Tom Mc Shea like anyone cares what u have to say or like. u are by far the worsr reviewer on game spot. with a new year coming soon i hope u loose your job so u can stop being paid for your bad reviews. i hope all the bad things in life happen to you and only you. pos
@jcwainc Baseless accusations and attacks don't go very far, you should take them elsewhere.
There are many people, myself included, that respect and enjoy what Tom has to say.
@Toysoldier34 its not baseless attacks. look at his reviews then look at the people telling him off. if u like him thats fine but in my and a lot and i mean a lot of people he is the worse reviewer here on game spot. his shinning moment is his the Simpsons review. please understand reviews really dont mean nothing to me cause i'll buy a game cause it looks good to me. but people look at reviews in a means to buy a game. its sad but true (thus why metacritic is a good and bad thing). well i could go on and on but why the kool aid drinking people will believe what they want to. while others will see with eyes open
@jcwainc There is no need to hide behind your keyboard and say things like you have about him that you would never say to a person. It only reflects poorly on yourself.
@jcwainc Boo hoo McShea writes OPINIONS I dont like, boo hoo I am too childish to look for second opinions, boo hoo there was something else my whiny ass wanted to say but the rock between my ears cant hold water.
Happy new year mate, hope everything goes swell for you too this year.
@jcwainc Regardless of how you feel about the work someone else produces, to me, those who wish bad things on others, especially to the severity that you just have, are the worst kinds of people in this world. Nothing he has done is so evil that he deserves to suffer for it, so you seriously need to wake up and smell the roses and stop being so selfish and immature.
@jcwainc Dude, he's just a piss poor reviewer. No need to get personal.
Aaron Sampson had the best description for ME3 being his 2nd choice (besides the fact that he chose Control) lol
Lot's of good games missing: Xenoblade Chronicles, Kingdom Hearts DDD, AC3, Kid Icarus Uprising, The Last Story
@Kenshin0011 We recognized Xenoblade Chronicles in our 2011 awards. Both The Last Story and Kid Icarus Uprising actually do appear on one of these lists!
@carolynmichelle @Kenshin0011 No disrespect but why are there soooo many arcade games up there? I mean come on, people don't even take half the time REAL developers do to make there games. Where is Dishonored, Borderlands 2, AC 3, and so many other GOOD games that people had sweat and blood in to it. I'm just saying that ARCADE games need to be separate from RETAIL games. And by the way, you are one of my favorite reviewers on this website :D.
Hotline Miami is a great example of a game that doesn't have a massive budget and marketing campaign or is even that long. While it may be short it uses every moment to the fullest and is one of the best games of the year.
It is funny that you mention people putting blood and sweat into projects when indie games are often the ones fueled by entirely that. While they may be solid games stuff like Assassin's Creed 3 is being pumped out year after year for money, not because of the passion of its creators and all the blood and sweat they put into making it.
You should look up Indie Game the Movie, watch it and see if you feel the same way. That even smaller arcade games don't have countless hours and sleepless nights poured into their creation.
@Livefantasy7"I mean come on, people don't even take half the time REAL developers do to make there games."
how are they not real developers. If any, they are the real ones. And remember, these lists are "personal perspectives"
I think it's unfair to assume arcade game developers aren't putting in the same time and effort as the teams making retail games. If anything, because of the escalating cost and time required to make successful retail games, we're already seeing far fewer games made each year. If all the development efforts were going into making the next Uncharted, Mario or Halo to put on a disc, we'd probably never have experienced amazing games like Journey, The Walking Dead, Minecraft or Hotline Miami.