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2011 in review, part 2

2011 was...pretty good. Not as sublime as other years before, but it could have been worse, right? A lot of disappointing big names this year: Crysis 2, the utter c**p which Call of Juarez The Cartel proved to be, F3AR, which is nothing like the original and made me understand more than ever that co-op and multiplayer are ruining today's games. There are also Call of Duty Idontknowhowmany and Battlefield 3, which, unfortunatelly, have and will be very successful, even if they don't offer ANYTHING apart shooting terrorists. It is sad indeed. There is Skyrim, which is a very console-like game which I know is pretty good, although terribly overrated, and I could't bring myself to play it for more than a few hours until now. I'll save it for later. Last, but not least, there's Batman Arkham City, the sequel to a game I really loved 2 years ago, even though I'm not a Batman fan, which I couldn't really play because it's a bad port and I can't glide as I'm supposed to with the keyboard. Others are having this problem too, and as I will never play a game with a gamepad in my hands, I'll wait for a patch or a fix, or something.
Now for the GOTY awards...

#15 Red Faction Armageddon

Upon hearing that the upcoming Red Faction game would no longer be a sandbox, like Guerilla, but would neither be a FPS, I wasn't impressed at all. But what we ultimatelly got was a solid action game which is really fun to play, mosttly because of the destruction engine which allows you do destroy absolutely everything. You name it. And you can also build it back. How cool is that? forget about trying to snipe those pesky soldiers from the Red Faction Armageddon, you can bring the whole building down.

#14 Serious Sam 3 BFE

Sam is finally back, and I was really looking forward to this. After a pretty boring, strange couple of missions, the fun did come. Old-skool, **** fun, BFE is a return to the roots of Serious Sam an '90s FPS games. It has its flaws, though -it doesn't look better than the HD remakes of the old Serious Sam games, the colour palette is pretty dull (we only have Egypt as a location), we're laking some weaponry from previous games (plasma gun, dual UZI), and the cutscenes aren't as spicy as in Serious Sam 2 and don't leave you rolling on the floor with laughter. But if you can make a few compromises, you'll enjoy Serious Sam 3 and will be left waiting for a DLC. Join the queue.

#13 Renegade Ops

This game came out of nowhere really, but I decided to give it a go and didn't regret that for a second. Produced by the same company which gave us Just Cause 2 last year, this game is pure fun. **** fun, to that matter. Reminded me that good games still get done nowdays.

#12 Assassins Creed Brotherhood

Brotherhood basically built upon everything that made the previous games successful while taking out the bad things and perfecting the formula. Sure, they only gave us one city, but Rome and its outskirts are big enough a playground for a very good sandboxy game such as this one. The territory conquest idea was welcome, the whole assassin recruitment and level up system is a real welcome addition which further motivates you to enjoy the game. It's the small things that really build up an enjoyable gaming experience....and Ubisoft Montreal finally understood that.

#11 Assassins Creed Revelations

It is indeed rare when we get two AAA titles from the same series in the same year. Not even 10 months one after another. And Assassins Creed is possibly the only modern series that has always improved with each game . Changing the scenery, adding some nice stuff, but basically keeping everything else intact, Revelations is a true success, and the new peak of the AC series.

#10 LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean

Over the last years I played a hell lot of LEGO videogames. Be it Star Wars, Indy Jones, Batman or Harry Potter, these games always offered a prospect of a quality time spent in fron of your PC, with a wide smile on your face. Funny, relaxing and yet pretty constructive, Lego Pirates makes no exception: all four movies, each split in 5 chapters, in pretty much the same formula, maybe more similar to the Indy Jones Lego games (my 2nd favourites) offer a fantastic experience. No kidding.

#9 Saints Row The Third

If you saw the first teaser, you knew what to expect from this sequel. Never take it seriously and you'll love it. It's a bigger, better and even crazier Saints Row 2. If you're looking for exactly that, it is really impossible for it to disappoint you.

#8 Dead Space 2

As most games these year, Dead Space 2 uses the same formula which made the original game successful in order to offer us more...of the same. I have no idea if there is an actual major change it the game, but what it does, it does really good. Some interesting dialogues, some cheap, but nontheless frightening scares and a tense atmosphere throughout the whole game, Dead Space 2 might not be as memorable as the first one, but it still most definitely is one of the best games to come out this year. What's solid is solid, no denying that.

#7 The Witcher 2

Overall, it was a disappointment to me, because I still regard The Witcher as one of the best RPG games of all time, and it took away a couple of things that I really loved. It made the fight too action oriented, while the one in the original completely suited me. The overall look is gorgeous, but still didn't charm me as much as the original's aspect did, and we're talking 2001 engine in that case. I found Witcher 2 much too shiny, brightly coloured, and I think it doesn't suit it as well as the old, rusty looks. Oh yeah, and the console menus. Damn that. Still, a mature storyline, some quality questing and tough decisions to make, Witcher 2 still is GOTY material without a doubt. Oh, and what the hell dod you do to Dice Poker?

#6 Back to the Future The Game

So I re-watched the Back to the Future Trilogy last summer and nostalgia quickly got to me. Those were the times when quality comedy films were still made, when **** wasn't the mark of success in basically every film on the market. The 5 episodes made by Telltale are exactly like that. Plus, it's no lame attempt to turn the films into games, no, it's a completely new story with Marty, Doc and a couple of new characters as well, all very well done. It's funny, it's relaxing, it's Telltale-ish and nostalgic. A point and click control scheme would have made it perfect.

#5 Gray Matter

I can't really say a lot about Gray Matter, because you've got to discover it yourself. It's a tale of love and death, filled with mistery, suspense and an interesting analysis of human nature. The setting in modern day Oxford, England greastly contributes to the game's atmosphere in a lot of ways. It comes with its flaws, but it's an experience you'll not forget very soon.

#4 Deus Ex Human Revolutions

This is one of the few games from recent times that glued me to the monitor for hours at a time, forgetting everything about myself and immersing myself in the wonderfully crafted world of Deus Ex. The best thing about it is that you can play it exactly as you want: stealthily, secret-ops like or Rambo, guns blazing **** It's entirely up to you. Too bad the storyline is rigid and doesn't really offer multiple lines of development, but, oh well, maybe they'll learn from that mistake,right?

#3 Portal 2

This is the game which, when I was done playing it, made me sit up and say "This is the GOTY and nothing will ever change my mind about that". It was my GOTY for almost the whole year, and yet here it is now, sitting in 3rd place only. Portal 2 is a much, much improved game, offering 4 times the content Portal did, making everything so varied that you'll keep asking yourself : "Damn, what could have they though of next?" It's almost perfect in every depertament, and it offers you immense satisfaction after you manage to solve a pretty difficult puzzle on your own. It is an amazing experience, and I personally cannot wait for some news about Portal 3. If it comes in an Box along with Half Life 2 Episode 3, I'll be jumping around with joy, I promise it.

#2 LA Noire

LA Noire is a fantastic achievment for the gaming world. It might not seem much at first, but it is a truly unforgettable experience. In terms of driving and shooting,as well as the setting, it is similar to The Godfather/Mafia, but it also offers an investigation/interrogation part which is entirely original and hasn't been seen elsewhere before. You rarely have to unholster your gun and shoot people. You'll spend most of your time investigating crime scenes, linking pieces of evidence and questioning suspects. In order to be successful, you really have to think before you act, because the game punishes you for not making the right decisions. And that only adds more charm to it. It takes over 30+ hours to beat, and by today's standards, that's a lot. The characters are really interesting to get to know, the whole story is very mature and deals with the problems arising in the American society during the '40s. Would have been Game of the Year, if it wasn't for...

#1 Game of the Year 2011: Alice Madness Returns

Yea, you heard right. Terribly underrated this game is. Basically a pshychological study of the main character, Alice Madness Returns explores the different realms and degrees of madness and its evolution, while also getting down to Earth from time to time, which is the English Victorian period. Troubled timelines, both of them.
You'll overhead quotes about life, death and the whole palette of human feelings, and you might as well link yourself to some of those. You'll fight monsters the human mind creates, only to see their explanation in the conscious world afterwards. The game might get a bit repetitive, as it is pretty long, but I don't mind. Humting for pieces of memories also keeps you motivated till the very end.
It was a difficult decision, but I do not regret awarding Alice Madness Returns the supreme award of the year. It fully deserves it, whether it's the producers, Alice or Lewis Carroll himself to thank.

Special Game of the Year 2011: Limbo

As I did last year, I couldn't ignore a true masterpiece of a game, but I also couldn't have placed above or below the different titles you just read through. So it deserves a special prize. Limbo is a haunting experience, and if you haven't played it, I urge you to make your trip into Purgatory as soon as possible.

Book of the Year: 11/22/63 - Stephen King
Film of the Year: The Ides of March

2011 in review, part 1

Annual blog, a bit delayed. Hi everyone.

Best Action

Winner: LA Noire
Mentions: Dead Space 2 & Saints Row 3

Best FPS

Winner: Serious Sam 3 BFE
Mention: Hard Reset & RAGE

Best RPG

Winner: The Witcher 2
Mentions: Deus Ex Human Revolutions & Fable III

Best Adventure

Winner: Gray Matter
Mentions: Back to the Future Episode 3-Get Tannen, Back to the Future Episode 5-Outtatime

Best strategy

Winner: Shogun 2 Total War
Mentions: Age of Empires Online, Tropico 4

Best platformer

Winner: Portal 2
Mentions: Alice Madness Returns, Trine 2

Best arcade

Winner: Driver San Francisco
Mention: Need for Speed The Run

Best racing sim

Winner: F1 2011
Mention: DiRT 3

Best sports

Winner: FIFA 12
Mention: PES 2012

Best multiplayer

Winner: LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean
Mentions: Age of Empires Online , Trine 2

Biggest surprise

Winner: Driver San Francisco
Mentions: Dungeon Siege III, Serious Sam Double D

Most Disappointing

Winners: Call of Juarez The Cartel & Crysis 2
Mentions: F3AR, Battlefield 3

Best game nobody played

Winners: Renegade Ops & Red Faction Armaggedon
Mentions: Serious Sam Double D, The First Templar

Worst game everybody played

Winners: Call of Duty 8 (?) ,Battlefield 3
Mentions: Crysis 2, F3AR

Most overrated game

Winner: The Elder Scrolls V- Skyrim
Mentions: Battlefield 3, Crysis 2

Worst game of the year

Winner: Call of Juarez The Cartel
Mentions: The Binding of Isaac, Brink

Best Serious Sam

Winner: Serious Sam Double D
Mentions: Serious Sam 3 BFE, Serious Sam

Best Assassins Creed

Winner: Assassins Creed Revelations
Mention: Assassins Creed Brotherhood

Best bad game

Winner: Duke Nukem Forever
Mention: The First Templar

Worst good game

Winner:Fable III
Mention: Dragon Age II

Best graphics

Winner: The Witcher 2- Assassins of Kings
Mention: LA Noire, Batman Arkham City

Best artistic graphics

Winner: Trine 2
Mentions: Alice Madness Returns, Limbo

Best sound

Winner: The Witcher 2- Assassins of Kings
Mentions: Battlefield 3, Dead Space 2

Best voice acting

Winner: LA Noire
Mentions: Portal 2, Back to the Future Season 1, Bastion

Best music

Winner: Saints Row 3
Mentions: Serious Sam 3 BFE, Dungeon Siege III

Most original game mechanic

Winner: Red Faction Armageddon (physics)
Mention: Driver San Francisco (shift)

Best atmosphere

Winner: LA Noire
Mention: Dead Space 2, Limbo

Best cutscenes

Winner: Assassins Creed Revelations
Mentions: Dragon Age II, LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean

Best new characters

Winner: Varric & Isabella (Dragon Age II)
Mentions: Cole Phelps (LA Noire), David Stiles (Gray Matter), Wheatley (Portal 2)

Best expansion/DLC

Winner: Fallout New Vegas Dead Money
Mentions: Mafia II-The Betrayal of Jimmy, Dragon Age II Mark of the Assassin

Funniest game

Winner: Fable III
Mentions: Back to the Future The Game, Portal 2

Most improved sequel

Winner: Portal 2
Mentions: Assassins Creed Brotherhood, Driver San Francisco

Least improved sequel

Winner: Call of Duty 8 (?)
Mentions: F3AR, Crysis 2, Dragon Age II

The 2011 Game of the Year 1994

Winner: Duke Nukem Forever

2010 in review, part 2

Here is the second part of my big blog, featuring the big winners. Please read the first part first. Enjoy!

Before that though, I have to tell you about some games that nearly made it into the Top 12. Call of Duty Black Ops is possibly the best modern CoD up to date, with a great campaign and finally a captivating story, but its being so similar to the previous titles prevented it from getting its place.

Singularity almost made it up as well, being a great shooter with memorable moments & gameplay mechanics, though it's a much too obvious & by the book (in the negative point of view), a Bioshock rip-off, from miles away.

Super Meat Boy could have also gotten a place up here had there not been some bugs which prevented me from getting over the Hell levels.

Mafia II probably would have deserved a Top 12 place, a Top 10 even, but as my favourite game of all time remains Mafia, the sequel was too much of a disappointment to really go up. It's a great game, but for me, it wasn't enough.

Grand Theft Auto IV Episodes From Liberty City & Dragon Age Origins Awakening are indeed great standalones, but they are based too much on their previous originals to really count as new games ,& to be featured here. While EFLC is one of the best mission packs I've played, Awakening is also a great experience; it feels a bit rushed, but that's just because DAO was too epic. A 15 hour expansion is not something you stumble too often upon these days.

Other games that nearly made it are Splinter Cell Conviction, a really solid sequel that succesfully took a different approach to the series; FIFA 11, which is finally a new , playable & fully enjoyable game for the PC, and, despite what critics say, Star Wars The Force Unleashed II, for being a relaxing, very cinematic experience with epic cutscenes. And now, the big 12 of 2010:

Top 12 Games of the Year 2010:


This game really had to make it into the tops. Despite not liking arcade racers too much, this was one game that really impressed me, It is not only fun to play, but also extremely immersive & atmospheric, not to mention the level of madness this game has to offer, rather than a fulminating complexity. Tracks with charter planes, boats, plenty of exlosions, mad races & powerups make Split/Second my number 1 racing game of the year.


After an interesting & different experience with the 2008 spin-off, the original Prince returns in an action packed game which is a combination between the latter & Sands of Time. Great, epic scale battles combined with very good platforming seqeunces make a real jewel, which, polished with a few nice cutscenes & good laughs, stands up as one of the year's best games.


Bioshock is easily & without doubt one of the best game in videogame history. I guess Bioshock 2 relied too much on that, delivering a game whose concept has barely changed. The highly artistic visuals and well dozed, polished & haunting visuals are better than ever, BUT the game is not nearly as memorable as the first one. It's clear that the story tries too hard, though it even pulls it off every now & agains, while two new gameplay elements don't really make a sequel. Shame, but it's still one of the best games of 2010. Too bad they didn't call it Sea of Dreams after all...

#9 Alpha Protocol

You know, Alpha Protocol is one of those strange games. Riddled with bugs, apparently with nothing really memorable; passable unoriginal elements, very short plot, a lot of potential not at all exploited. And even worse, you had great expectations from it. Pretty disappointing at first run, in June, I rated it as harsh as I could & let it rot. Except that it didn't actually blossomed. Surprisingly, 6 months after I completed it, I see Alpha Protocol in a positive light, full of funny jokes, crazy puzzles I used to master, silly lil' shootouts & a story that really made me feel like James Bond meets Jack Bauer meets Jason Bourne. And then, of course, there's Steven Heck! He alone could make this game a total success!

#8 Battlefield Bad Company 2

I've always, and I tell you, always prefered singleplayer to multiplayer. I sooo much wanted A Battlefield with a real campaign. Well DiCE heard my plea, but released Battlefield Bad Company, back in 2008, only for consoles. No play for me. But this year, they decided to release the sequel for the PC as well. Well, hell yeah! BBC 2 is a superb military shooter; a great action-packed campaign which feels fresh and not ripped-off, as the CoD campaigns seem to be. Despite the awesome feeling & great missions, it gives you the much needed exploration possibility & alternative routes to move & to complete your objectives, reminding of Crysis rather than CoD. Not as complex, sandboxy &, therefore, not as enjoyable as Crysis Warhead, but a superb game nontheless.

#7 Monkey Island 2-LeChuck's Revenge Special Edition

What more can I say about a Monkey Island game. A **** '90s game brought back to life with improved, up-to-date visuals & perfect voice acting. A blessing for nostalgics or younger fans alike. You'll participate in Spitting contests, you'll battle impossible odds, you'll rob graves, solve riddles through songs & finally, confront the evil Pirate LeChuck once again. What more can you ask for, huh? Adventure of the year, sold! Thanks Lucas! Look behind you, a three-headed monkey!

#6 Starcraft 2

Such a long anticipated game is sure to make some waves when it's released. Especially if released in midsummer, as Starcraft II was. I can't say much because I hadn't played much of Starcraft 1 when i took up the sequel. All I could say was that the game was not much of an innovation, not at all actually. Mostly nothing in the gameplay changed. The story is pretty drama-queen like & predictible. But the level design is so good, the missions are so great,varied & action packed & the intermezzos are so full of flavour that it really, really doesn't matter. Possiblr THE most polished game in years to come, Starcraft II is one hell of an experience you should under no circumstances miss.

#5 Fallout New Vegas

First things first, I hated Fallout 3, I still do and I think it's practically a piece of c**p. Bethesda really screwed up the franchise with that title. Therefore, I had almost no expectations from New Vegas, even though I knew it was in the masterful hands of Obsidian, creators of great plots & possibly the greatest characters in vdeo game history. The result was a great, Obsidian-like one: an extremely polished & well worked game, gameplay improved in every aspect & oriented to a more hardcore mass, & the plot-man, purely genuine! ****A work! Lots of bugs, but nothing a few patches couldn't fix. Obsidian took Fallout back to the tops, turning a wreck concept into a wonderful, immersive & unforgettable game, clearly one of the best games of the year. Maybe the cazadors got it down a place, maybe the very very difficult decisions took it down another step (though both are great features, really), but Fallout New Vegas deserves all the praise it can get. F**k you, Bethesda! Hands down Obsidian!

#4 Just Cause 2

A real of revivals & improvements, this is. First it was Battlefield Bad Company 2, then Fallout New Vegas, now this. I absolutely hated the original Just Cause. Even with my little respect of some of elements of that game, the extreme annoyances I got with it can hardly be compared to anything else of this kind I've ever experienced. But what Just Cause did wrong, Just Cause 2 does it right, & in a lot of places, even better than right. Most importantly, you needn't take it seriously; JC2 doesn't want that. It just wants you to have fun. Loads of it. And I don't think I've ever had as much fun in a game as I did in Just Cause 2. Pinning people to accelerating cars, grappling cars or statues to a helicopter or getting a vehicle off-route using a grapple hook & a onpassing, innocent airplane. You name it, & you'll do it. Equalling 100 times the craziest things you see in the most action packed films, Just Cause 2 has everything you need. Welcome to the jungle!

#3 Metro 2033

This game, along the likes of Cryostasis or Call of Cthulhu Dark Corners of the Earth, will always remain as a gem in video game history. A gem which not everybody will be able to taste, but a gem nevertheless. Metro 2033 is a haunting & touching experience, a story about man at the end of the world, a world he destroyed. It is a tale about human nature, instinct, sacrifice & survival. Yes, it is a very solid survival shooter, both in aspects of gameplay/mechanics & in the audio/visual ones. A very, very atmospheric game that will move you. Even if it's the winged monster, the horror-filled tunnels, the little kid , the ghosts or the frozen tear. It's one of the best game s I've had the pleasure to play. As a further reccomandation, play it in Russian, with english subtitles. It's twice as good this way.

#2 Mass Effect 2

Once again, Mass Effect narrowly fails to get my no 1 Game of the Year award. Back when I played it I thought it would win no problem, hands down. Looking at the competition, I still thought it would win without many problems, but the comeptition came out of nowhere & blasted in second. Mass Effect 2 is a simply outstanding game. Just like that. It's just like watching a good cliffhanging movie: you'll always be on the edge od your seat, you'll never get bored. I couldn't name you a Sci-Fi creation, be it book, film or game, better tham this one. It is absolutely perfect in every aspect, therefore I will not get into details. Except for two things. One is related to the over-simplification of the RPG mechanics & the pleasure of getting XP out of kills, which was brutally taken away. The second relates to the unexplicable absence of the Mako & the suspicious resource harvesting system. Hopefully they'll be solved in Mass Effect 3, which is due next year & will hopefully, finally get a much deserved title, the Game of the Year title. Which in 2010 goes to...


#1 S.T.A.L.K.E.R.-Call of Pripyat

Yep, it all comes down to this. And once again, in the second consecutive year, a Russian game takes my Game of the Year title. Even I don't know how come I finally decided upon STALKER winning the big prize. It was a fierce battle between it, Mass Effect 2 & Amnesia The Dark Descent. And, as you can see, STALKER won.
What I can tell you, cause I won't tell you much, is that Call of Pripyat is the sum of everything in the previous STALKER games. Minus the actual storyline and cutscenes, but in the end, it didn't matter much. Shadow of Chernobyl is and will be one of my favourite games of all time, & what disappointed me in Clear Sky was not only the lack of substantial improvements or really memorable moments, but the step backward which, in my opinion, the series took. Call of Prypiat is here to fix it, though. Despite a slow, unimpressive end which made me delay my playthrough, the game grows on you, and you'll easily be sucked in after a few hours, given that you're a series fan. The lack of the Zone feedback from Shadow of Chernobyl may seem as a bad decision at first, but it's actually a good one; it makes you feel more like a stalker, identifying better with the reality that the Zone is. A really immersive world which, for the first time in the series, made me explore every corner of it, resulting in 30+ hours of gameplay. Impressive.
Just as Cryostasis did it last year, Call of Prypiat excels in art. All the environments are purely works of art. I cannot begin to tell you how fantastic the world looks. Not to mention the audio part or the atmosphere-simply perfect.
The other huge strenght of this game is also shared with Cryostasis: it's a PC exclusive. This means hardcore, a game that can't really be played with one hand while eating cereal & watching a football match, as most console games are. And it's not only hard & unforgiving, but the gunfights are simply perfectly done. It's so realistic, that under the aspect of actual "shooting", Call of Pripyat is the best shooter in videogaming history. And if that's not deservable of a GOTY title, I don't know what is!



I simply couldn't let Amnesia aside. I couldn't award it THE prize, as it's more of a psychological experiment than a game. I also couldn't rank it less than first, because it has been one of the best experiences in my life, and on top of that, it's been developed by 6 people. So yeah. This game is the scariest game I have ever played; 90% of the time I was scared s***less, mostly just standing in one place while trying to calm down; 5% i was trying to solve a puzzle while being scared s***less & the other 5% i was running away. Yep, I almost pissed my pants while playing this game. There's art, there's beautiful music, the most intense atmosphere you can imagine, & a haunting, complex story to it. From the creators of the more than excellent Penumbra series. Once again, grade A work, Frictional Games. Looking forward to your upcoming horror game- whatever it is, it's gonna be another masterpiece!

2010 in review, part 1

So here goes my yearly blog with my yearly GOTY awards. In two parts. First is here:

Biggest surprise:

-Dark Void
-Prison Break The Conspiracy
-Just Cause 2
-Fallout New Vegas

WINNERS: Singularity & Fallout New Vegas

Best storyline:

-Mafia II
-Call of Duty Black Ops
-Mass Effect 2
-Alpha Protocol
-Amnesia- The Dark Descent
-Metro 2033

WINNER:Amnseia The Dark Descent

Best graphics, technical:

-Mafia II
-Just Cause 2
-Bioshock 2
-Battlefield Bad Company 2
-Need for Speed Hot Pursuit
-STALKER Call of Pripyat
-Mass Effect 2
-Metro 2033
-Star Wars The Force Unleashed II

WINNER: Just Cause 2

Best graphics, artistic:

-Dragon Age Origins Awakening
-Fallout New Vegas
-STALKER Call of Pripyat
-Amnesia The Dark Descent
-Splinter Cell Conviction

WINNER: STALKER- Call of Pripyat

Best atmosphere:

-Metro 2033
-STALKER- Call of Pripyat
-Mass Effect 2
-Aliens vs Predator
-Starcraft 2
-Amnesia-The Dark Descent

WINNER: Amnesia-The Dark Descent

Best cutscences:

-Mass Effect 2
-Mafia II
-Star Wars The Force Unleashed 2
-Grand Theft Auto IV- Episodes from Liberty City
-Command & Conquer 4-Tiberian Twilight

WINNER: Star Wars The Force Unleashed 2

Best sound:

-Mafia II
-Mass Effect 2
-Aliens vs Predator
-Kane & Lynch 2-Dog Days
-STALKER-Call of Pripyat
-Amnesia-The Dark Descent
-Metro 2033

WINNER: Metro 2033

Best voice acting:

-Fallout New Vegas
-Starcraft 2
-Mafia II
-Kane & Lynch 2-Dog Days
-Metro 2033
-Sam & Max Season 3


Best Licensed soundtrack:

-Grand Theft Auto IV The Lost & Damned
-Fallout New Vegas
-Starcraft II
-Mafia II
-Call of Duty Black Ops

WINNER: Fallout New Vegas

Best Music:

-Amnesia The Dark Descent
-Assassin's Creed II
-Prince of Persia-The Forgotten Sands
-Super Meat Boy
-Aliens vs Predator
-The Misadventures of PB Winterbottom

WINNER:The Misadventures of PB Winterbottom

Most original game: The Ball

Most Memorable Content:

-Amnesia-The Dark Descent (the wine cellar)
-Metro 2033 (Ghosts chapter)
-Just Cause 2 (carrying the statue head grappled to car/heli)
-Kane & Lynch 2 Dog Days (escaping capture)
-Singularity (sewers)
-STALKER Call of Pripyat (the bloodsucker lair)
-Starcraft 2 (Protoss last stand)
-Prince of Persia The Forgotten Sands (water freezing, last sequence)
-Fallout New Vegas (Come Fly With Me quest)
-Aliens vs Predator (first predator fight)

Best Characters:Metro 2033

-Steven Heck (Alpha Protocol)
-Henry Leland (Alpha Protocol)
-Henry Tomassino (Mafia II)
-YES! Man (Fallout New Vegas)
-Victor (Fallout New Vegas)
-Lily (Fallout New Vegas)
-Mr. House (Fallout New Vegas)
-Caesar (Fallout New Vegas)
-Vulpes Inculta (Fallout New Vegas)
-Jason Bright (Fallout New Vegas)

WINNER: Lily & Steven Heck (Fallout New Veags & Alpha Protocol)

Best expansion pack/DLC:

-Mafia II Joe's Adventures
-Dragon Age Origins Awakening
-Dragon Age Origins Witch Hunt
-Warhammer 40000 Dawn of War II Chaos Rising

WINNER: Dragon Age Origins Awakening

Best Action:

-Mafia II
-James Bond 007 Bloodstone
-Just Cause 2
-Dark Void
-Star Wars The Force Unleashed II
-Splinter Cell Conviction
-Grand Theft Auto IV Episodes From Liberty City

WINNER: Just Cause 2

Best FPS:

-Battlefield Bad Company 2
-Metro 2033
-Call of Duty Black Ops
-Sniper Ghost Warrior
-STALKER-Call of Pripyat

WINNER: STALKER-Call of Pripyat

Best RPG:

-Mass Effect 2
-Fallout New Vegas
-Dininity 2- The Dragon Knight Saga
-Dragon Age Origins Awakening
-Alpha Protocol

WINNER: Mass Effect 2

Best strategy:

-Supreme Commander 2
-Starcraft II
-Napoleon Total War
-Civilization V

WINNER: Starcraft II

Best platformer:

-Super Meat Boy
-The Misadventures of PB Winterbottom
-Assassin's Creeed II
-Prince of Persia The Forgotten Sands
-Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light

WINNER: Prince of Persia-The Forgotten Sands

Best racing:

-F1 2010
-Need for Speed Hot Pursuit

WINNER: Split/Second

Best adventure:

-Sam & Max Season 3 Episode 2-The Tomb of Sammun Mak
-Sam & Max Season 3 Episode 4-Beyond the Alley of the Dolls
-Darkness Within 2
-Monkey Island 2-Le Chuck's Revenge Special Edition

WINNER:-Monkey Island 2-Le Chuck's Revenge Special Edition

Best horror:

-Metro 2033
-Amnesia The Dark Descent
-STALKER Call of Pripyat
-Alien Breed 3 Descent

WINNER: Amnesia The Dark Descent

Best sports:

-FIFA Online 2
-NBA 2K11
-FIFA 11
-Football Manager 2011
-Pro Evolution Soccer 2011


Best multiplayer:

-Crimecraft Bleedout
-FIFA Online 2
-FIFA 11
-Lost Planet 2
-Lad & Gold Gangs of the Wild West
-Battlefield Bad Company 2

WINNER: Battlefield Bad Company 2

Best bad game goes to Terrorist Takedown 3
Worst good game goes to Alpha Protocol & Kane & Lynch 2 Dog Days

Worst game of the year:

-Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows Part I
-Wolfschanze 2
-Transformers War for Cybertron


Best game nobody played:

-Amnesia The Dark Descent
-Necrovision Lost Company
-Sniper Ghost Warrior
-Monkey Island 2-Le Chuck's Revenge Special Edition
-The Ball

WINNER: Amnesia The Dark Descent

Worst game everybody played:

-Command & Conquer 4-Tiberian Twilight
-Medal of Honor
-Dragon Age Origins Golems of Amgarrak
-Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows Part I
-Dead Rising 2

WINNER: Medal of Honor

Most disappointing:

-Medal of Honor
-Command & Conquer 4-Tiberian Twilight
-Bioshock 2
-Mafia II
-Alpha Protocol
-Dead Rising 2


Least improved sequel:

-Call of Duty Black Ops
-Bioshock 2
-Starcraft II
-Command & Conquer 4-Tiberian Twilight
-Star Wars The Force Unleashed II
-Mafia II

WINNER: Command & Conquer 4-Tiberian Twilight

Most improved sequel:

-Fallout New Vegas
-STALKER Call of Pripyat
-Prince of Persia The Forgotten Sands
-Splinter Cell Conviction
-LEGO Harry Potter Years 1-4
-Battlefield Bad Company 2

WINNER: Fallout New Vegas

Funniest game:

-LEGO Harry Potter Years 1-4
-Sam & Max Season 3 Episode 2 The Tomb of Sammun-Mak
-Monkey Island 2 LeChuck's Revenge Special Edition
-Alpha Protocol
-Prince of Persia The Forgotten Sands
-Dead Rising 2

WINNER: Sam & Max Season 3 Episode 2 The Tomb of Sammun-Mak

2009 in review part 2

Please read Part 1 first, I posted them like this because it was to big to fit in one blog.


#10 Call of Duty 6 Modern Warfare 2

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 is the perfect modern first person shooter, with a superb, fast paced and never boring single player campaign. Too bad that the multiplayer was

below expectations and it dragged the game down as a whole. But that doesn't mean that Modern Warfare 2 isn't one of the best games of 2009.

#9 Mirror's Edge

Even though it wasn't that well received by all the critics, I consider Mirror's Edge to be one of the most pleasurable experiences in gaming of year 2009. It's unique, fast

paced, combines a lot of elements with intelligent platforming and delivers a great overall experience, one I will not forget. Try it, you'll see what I mean.

#8 Anno 1404 Dawn of Discovery

The Anno games have always been good, but they never were excellent, with Anno 1503 The New World very close to that though. Fortunatelly, the new Anno 1404 is so well done and

incredibly polished that it's not only by far the best game in the series, but also the best strategy game of 2009 and one of the best city builders ever created.

#7 Need for Speed Shift AND DiRT 2 AND Burnout Paradise The Ultimate Box

Again I want to make no difference between the two games, as I told you before. They are both the best in their genre, and Burnout Paradise is also one of the best arcade racing

games I've ever played, if not the best one. While Need for Speed Shift is the most valuable of them, DiRT 2 offers the best content and Burnout Paradise is the most fun to play,

they all deserve this place.

#6 Call of Juarez Bound in Blood

The prequel to one of my favourite games, Bound in Blood offers us a superb western atmosphere (so rare these days), with incredible, optimized graphics, memorable plot and

characters. It's not better than the first game and it doesn't feature Ray with a Bible, but it's a hell of a good game anyways.

#5 Ghostbusters

Surprised? Well, if you are, please stop reading, get the game and play it. No, wait, better yet, re-watch the movies and play the game after. Effect guaranteed. Such a good

adaptation of a movie is rare, and to blend it perfectly with a satisfying concept, funny, series-like plot and the use of the original cast's voices, plus many many more brought

Ghostbusters in the Top 5 of 2009.

#4 The Saboteur

The circumstances in which The Saboteur came to life made me forgive a lot of its mistakes and wrongs. It was sabotaged by EA, but still it managed to be one of the best games of the year. It's not all about the special chromatic **** or Paris, or the great missions or the Irish protagonist. It's a game in which a lot of affection and passion was invested, and it's clear if you look deeper into it, beyond the veil of ugly textures and bugs.

#3 Dragon Age Origins

Another year one of Bioware's works shines up in the Top 3. This time not with a SF game, Star Wars or not, but with a pure fantasy game, loyal to the old-skool formula and worthy to be called Baldur's Gate true follower. it is not perfect, but it offers you A LOT of content, and none of it cheap as value and embarassing as Bethesda with their Fallout 3 (bleah!). The characters are well contured, probably the best ones Bioware have produced, a very intelligent plot which, even if it makes use of all the overused fantasy elements still manages to have personality and uniqueness, and to all the loot, skills and all the blah blah blahs, combined with great audio and replayability all blend in a masterpiece.

#2 Batman Arkham Asylum

From the start I'd like to tell you I'm not a Batman fan. And do, nobody payed me to rank Arkham Asylum 2nd. It simply is the nearly-perfect action game. Let's ****the audio/visuals as superb and go on to the gameplay, where you have everything: fighting, stealth, using gadgets...all pushed up to perfection. As simple as that. Plus very well worked puzzles, riddles for those who really want to squeeze the game of the last drops of content. And let's not forget about the story, a superb and not at all the hero vs villain tale, and the sombre, adaptable atmosphere, plus pieces of unforgettable content (such as Croc's Lair) and we could have easily had the Game of the Year. That, if it wouldn't have been for...

#1 GAME OF THE YEAR 2009: Cryostasis-The Sleep of Reason

Yes, this is The One. Cryostasis is by far the BEST GAME OF 2009, I knew it from the start, hell, I knew it even from when I finished the game, waaay back in July 2009. No, it's not very well rated by the Western critics, mainly because it is not an american/canadian/british game probably, but a Russian game. And the Westerners don't always understand the value of games like this, which is not material, shall I say, but spiritual. Let me explain.
You play as a meteorologist, in year 1969, who is sent to investigate a transport ship in the Northern Sea. Once there, he finds himself into a frozen, still life, and the first priority becomes survival. He can change the fates of certain crue members by preventing them to the the thing which resulted in their deaths. Complicated, but you'll understand when you'll play. He'll find himslef traped, hunted down by monsters of the ice (you'll see what I mean) which shoot cold at you while your bullets are in fact heat. The game itself is basically a race for heat, more and more intense, a desire even for burning in flames. And all this , the "apparent" (you'll understand why I used this word) in parallel of a tale of courage, leaderhip, desire you find written on scattered fragments and different allusions to human behaviour. Which you need to search for, not see just the shooting part, as some can't understand. And I hate and despise them for that. For example, you see a flashback with some of the crue members fighting for a place in the escape helicopter, just before the ship would hit an iceberg. Then you wake up in a room with starving dogs growling at you, tearing each other apart. Or the captain/crew traitor relationship is magistrally pictured by a polar bear mother. Cornered in a cave by two hunters, she is sure to be killed. But a cave-in traps one of the hunters inside and makes him lose the rifle. As the bear, you look at him, but don't attack him, as he sure would have done to you, but flea. Make any connections to the human behaviour?
Everything in Cryostasis makes it a masterpiece. Even the environmental repetitivity, for which it was severely criticised. Why,oh why? Are they stupid? What do they want from a Russian cargo ship? A casino? A strip club? A swimming pool? No, the repetivity is a blessing, as is intensifies the frozen, lonely atmosphere, it makes you more melancholic, more desperate for things you do not even know. Everything in Cryostasis is a symbol, one YOU NEED to interprete. The end is also, a brilliant, heart warming metaphor.
It really saddens me to see that commercial games like Call of Duty 6 get all the public's attention (all my respects to the game, but it's worth NOTHING in comparison to Cryostasis), while masterpieces like this one are almost ignored.
Please play the game, look beyond the simple aspect of it and try to imagine. Also please play it in Russian, with voices in Russian I mean, subtitles in English or whatever. Because Cryostasis without its Russian voice acting is not Cryostasis. You'll thank me after.

Best films of 2009: James Cameron's Avatar and Public Enemies

Top 10 Albums of 2009:

1)KISS-Sonic Boom
2)Steel Panther-Feel the Steel
3)Lynyrd Skynyrd-God and Guns
4)Hammerfall-No Sacrifice, No Victory
5)Rammstein-Liebe ist fur Alle Da
6)Europe-Last Look at Eden
7)Alice in Chains-Black Gives Way to Blue
9)Bon Jovi-The Circle
10)Cannibal Corpse-Evisceration Plague

Best books of 2009: Under the Dome (Stephen King) and The Lost Symbol (Dan Brown)

2009 in Review Part 1

I'm back with a blog, after nearly a year of absence. I've been fine,but very busy. I won't promise I'll stay around for too much, but oh well, at least from time to time. So here's my year in review blog. Hope you're all well and A-OK.

Best and Worst games of 2009

Most surprisingly good game

Mentions:-Ghostbusters (9.2)
-Borderlands (8.6)
-Torchlight (8.4)
-Cryostatis (9.6)
-Zeno Clash (9)
-Bionic Commando (8.6)

WINNER: Bionic Commando

Best story

Mentions:-Manhunt 2 (7.4)
-Cryostasis (9.6)
-Ghostbusters (9.2)
-Zeno Clash (9)
-Braid (9.4)


Braid offers us a non-coventional tale of love and friendship, time , dreams, imagination and forgiveness, It is epic!

Best Graphics, Techincal

Mentions:-Call of Juarez Bound in Blood (9.6)
-DiRT 2 (9.8)
-Batman Arkham Asylum (9.4)
-Mirror's Edge (9.2)
-Resident Evil 5 (8.8)
-Risen (9)
-James Cameron's Avatar (8.6)
-Zeno Clash (9)


Best Graphics, Artistic

Mentions:-Trine (8.6)
-Zeno Clash (9)
-Borderlands (8.6)
-Damnation (7.2)
-The Saboteur (9)


Best New Character:

Mentions:-Morrigan (Dragon Age Origins)
-Morgan LeFlay (Tales of Monkey Island)
-Marquis DeSinge (Tales of Monkey Island)
-Sean Devlin (The Saboteur)
-Shale (Dragon Age Origins)

WINNER: Morgan LeFlay (Tales of Monkey Island)

Best atmosphere

Mentions:-Red Faction Guerilla (8.2)
-Batman Arkham Asylum (9.4)
-Call of Duty 6-Modern Warfare 2 (9.4)
-Shellshock 2-Blood Trails (7.4)
-Cryostasis-The Sleep of Reason (9.6)

WINNER: Cryostasis-The Sleep of Reason

Best soundtrack:

Mentions:-Saint's Row 2 (8.4)
-Burnout Paradise The Ultimate Box (9.5)
-Painkiller Resurrection (4.8)
-Borderlands (8.6)
-Anno 1404-Dawn of Discovery (9.2)

WINNER: Burnout Paradise-The Ultimate Box

Best sound:

Mentions:-Cryostasis-The Sleep of Reason (9.6)
-Shellshock 2-Blood Trails (7.4)
-Dragon Age Origins (9.4)
-Ghostbusters (9.2)
-Batman Arkham Asylum (9.4)

WINNER: Cryostasis-The Sleep of Reason

Best voice acting:

Mentions:-Star Wars The Force Unleashed (8.6)
-Ghostbusters (9.2)
-Tales of Monkey Island (8.8)
-Batman Arkham Asylum (9.4)
-Dragon Age Origins (9.4)
-Serious Sam HD-The First Encounter (8.6)

WINNER: Star Wars The Force Unleashed

Funniest Game:

Mentions:-Ghostbusters (9.2)
-Tales of Monkey Island Episode 3-Lair of the Leviathan (9.6)
-Serious Sam HD-The First Encounter (8.6)
-Call of Juarez Bound in Blood (9.6)
-Secret of the Monkey Island (9.6)

WINNER: Ghostbusters

Best Bossfights

Mentions:-Ghostbusters (9.2)
-Lego Indiana Jones 2-The Adventure Continues (8.6)
-Wolfenstein (8)
-X-Men Origins Wolverine (8.8)
-Prototype (8.8)

WINNER: Wolfenstein

Most Improved sequel:

Mentions:-Zuma's Revenge (8.2)
-Lego Indiana Jones 2-The Adventure Continues (8.6)
-Anno 1404-Dawn of Discovery (9.2)
-Football Manager 2010 (9)

WINNER: Lego Indiana Jones 2-The Adventure Continues

Most Memorable content:

Mentions:-spraying a church with **** (Saint's Row 2)
-EOS Raid (Red Faction Guerilla)
-Croc's lair (Batman Arkham Asylum)
-History Museum fight (Ghostbusters)
-first encounter with big monster (Cryostasis)

WINNER: Croc's Lair (Batman Arkham Asylum)

Most Violent game:

Mentions:-Prototype (8.8)
-X-Men Origins Wolverine (8.8)
-Painkiller Resurrection (4.8)
-Still Life 2 (7.8)
-Manhunt 2 (7.4)

WINNER: Manhunt 2

Most Original game:

Mentions:-Zeno Clash (9)
-Braid (9.2)
-The Void (9.4)
-Trine (8.6)
-Raven Squad (6.4)

WINNER: The Void

Best Characters:

Mentions:-Dragon Age Origins (9.4)
-Risen (9)
-Tales of the Monkey Island (8.8)
-Zeno Clash (9)
-Lego Indiana Jones 2-The Adventure Continues (8.6)

WINNER: Dragon Age Origins

Most Disappointing Game:

Mentions:-Guitar Hero World Tour (7.8)
-FEAR 2 Project Origin (8)
-Resident Evil 5 (8.8)
-The Godfather II (7.4)
-FIFA 10 (5)

WINNER: FEAR 2 Project Origin

Worst Game Everyone Played:

Mentions:-Watchmen-The End is Nigh (6.6)
-Star Wars The Clone Wars Republic Heroes (6.4)
-FIFA 10 (5)


Best game nobody played:

Mentions:-Necrovision (8)
-Tales of Monkey Island (8.8)
-Battlestrike-Shadow of Stalingrad (7.8)
-Cryostasis-The Sleep of Reason (9.6)
-Serious Sam HD-The First Encounter (8.6)

WINNER:Cryostasis The Sleep of Reason

Best Expansion Pack:

Mentions:-Borderlands-The Island of Dr. Ned (8.8)
-FEAR 2 Reborn (9.2)
-World in Conflict Soviet Assault (9.2)
-Dragon Age Origins- The Stone Prisonier (N/A)


Least Improved Sequel:

Mentions:-The Godfather II (7.4)
-Left 4 Dead 2 (8.8)
-Manhunt 2 (7.4)
-FIFA 10 (5)
-Chronicles of Riddick-Assault on Dark Athena (8.2)

WINNER: The Godfather 2

Best Action

Nominees:-Ghostbusters (9.2)
-Batman Arkham Asylum (9.4)
-Saint's Row 2 (8.4)
-X-Men Origins Wolverine (8.8)
-Prototype (8.8)
-Bionic Commando (8.6)
-The Saboteur (9)
-Star Wars The Force Unleashed (8.6)

WINNER: Batman Arkham Asylum

This year had clearky excelled in high quality action games, & it is really heart-warming to see all these great games as an excellent way to enterntain yourself. A lot to

choose from: the mayhem and destruction in Prototype, the varied GTA-**** very fun options from Saints Row 2, the unforgetable adaptation of Ghostbusters, a Paris WWII based

game The Saboteur, superb action-platforming combination in Bionic Commando, as well as two great series based games, Star Wars The Force Unleahed and X-Men Origins Wolverine. But

the true winner of the year is none other than Batman Arkham Asylum, a game with nearly perfect fighting and stealth techniques, all combined with stunning visuals, top notch

voice acting, memorable characters and atmosphere, which all appeal even to someone who's never been a Batman fan...make Batman Arkham Asylum the best action game of the year.

Best FPS

Nominees:-Cryostasis-Sleep of Reason (9.6)
-Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (9.4)
-Call of Juarez Bound in Blood (9.6)
-FEAR 2 Reborn (9.2)

WINNER: Call of Juarez Bound in Blood

Strictly refering to shooting experience, Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 offers you the best you can hope for. It is diverse, fast paced and incredibly well done, and although

short, it keeps you on the edge of your seat from start to finish. However, the superbly executed western shooter prequel, Call of Juarez Bound in Blood, wins on a larger scale of

content. I also need to mention the hour long DLC for FEAR 2, Reborn, which proved out to be not only substantially better than the original, but also one of the best FPS

experiences up to date.

Best RPG

Nominees:-Risen (9)
-Borderlands (8.6)
-Torchlight (8.4)
-Dragon Age Origins (9.4)

WINNER: Dragon Age Origins

The head-to-head contenders for this cathegory were Dragon Age Origins, the true follower of Baldur's Gate, and Risen, the new Gothic-****game.While Risen has substantially

better graphics, and is more optimized, Dragon Age benefits from better music and voice acting. While Risen is better than Dragon Age on account of the open world, more realistic

environment, Dragon Age kicks its @$$ regarding the character and party mechanics. And the list could go on forever. Overall though, mainly thanks to the old skool **** Dragon

Age wins over Risen. Torchlight is also a great Diablo-****H&S, and Borderlands a loot-race based shooter/RPG.

Best Strategy:

Nominees:-Warhammer 40000 Dawn of War II (9.2)
-Plants vs Zombies (10)
-Anno 1404-Dawn of Discovery (9.2)
-Football Manager 2010 (9.2)
-The Sims 3 (9)
-World in Conflict Soviet Assault (9.2)

WINNER: Anno 1404 Dawn of Discovery

Warhammer 40000 Dawn of War II offered us Warhammer in improved Company of Heroes **** Sims 3 offered us more and better of the same ,as World in Conflict Soviet Assault did.

Plants vs Zombies came out of the blue and proved out to be a magnificent casual game. But the true winner of the year is clearly Anno 1404-Dawn of Discovery, which finally lived

up to its true potential and became what it was ment to be:the perfect historical economically-based city builder.

Best Racing Simulator

Nominees:-DiRT 2 (9.8)
-Race On (8.6)
-Need for Speed Shift (9.5)

WINNER: DiRT 2 AND Need for Speed Shift

2009 has been a superb year for all racing simulation fans, with two big titles to satisfy their needs. While Need for Speed Shift is no doubt the best on-track racing simulator

up to date, DiRT 2 combines the best content from last year's GRID with off-road tracks, resulting in the perfect off-road racing simulator. As superb as they both are, they both

deserve the prize. In your face, the ones who thought they were "driving" a car in Most Wanted/Carbon and such!

Best Arcade

Nominees:-Clutch (7.6)
-Burnout Paradise The Ultimate Box (9.5)
-Tom Clancy's HAWX (8.2)
-FUEL (7.8)

WINNER: Burnout Paradise The Ultimate Box

While HAWX is a very fun and satisfying modern flight arcade, Clucth is worthy of comparison with Carmaggedon & Fuel impressed me with the huge world, the winner is still, by

far, Burnout Paradise, a wonderful port, a game that will never bore you. Thank you, EA and Criterion!

Best Platformer:-Braid (9.2)
-Trine (8.6)
-Bionic Commando Rearmed (8.4)
-Mirror's Edge (9.2)

WINNER: Mirror's Edge

Hard to catalogue in a genre, Mirror's Edge is basically a 3D platformer combined with puzzle solving, fist fighting and shooting. But so fun, pleasurable, fast paced and utterly

memorable the platforming is, that it clearly deserves the title of Best Platformer of 2009. Second place goes to Bionic Commando Rearmed, a **** 2,5D platformer, loyal to the

old formula, very funny and satisfying.

Best Adventure game:

Nominees:-Runaway-A Twist of Fate (8.8)
-Tales of Monkey Island Episode 3-Lair of the Leviathan (9.6)
-Secret of Monkey Island (9.6)
-Tales of Monkey Island Episode 2-Siege of Spinner Cay (9.2)
-Still Life 2 (7.8)

WINNER: Secret of Monkey Island

A Monkey Island dominated year this 2009, with the ****c series making its comeback. Awhile Telltalles's Tales of Monkey Island season hit it big with episode 3, it still can't

compare with the Sam & Max previous works, so the awesome remake The Secret of Monkey Island Special Edition grabs the gold. The third and final chapter in the Runaway series, A

Twist of Fate, also gets a memorable mention.

Best Sports game:

Nominees:-Football Manager 2010 (9)
-NBA 2K10 (9)
-Pro Evolution Soccer 2010 (7.6)


Because this year FIFA 10 was a complete and total disgrace on the PC, and EA's FIFA Manager also went down in quality, Pro Evolution Soccer 2010 claimed the best football

simulator of the year for the first time, while Football Manager 2010 finally surpassed its direct competitor. The award however goes to NBA 2K10, with my regards to 2K Games for

showing us that a series can evolve.

Best Fighting game:

WINNER:Street Fighter IV (9)

YOu can easily win if you have no competitors, that's for sure. But it's not only that, but the fact that Street Fighter IV is not just an excellent fighting game, but also one

of the best up to date on the PC, worthy of its name.

Best Puzzle game:

Nominees:-Puzzle Kingdoms (8)
-Bookworm Adventures Chapter 2 (7.5)
-Zuma's Revenge (8.2)

WINNER: Zuma's Revenge

Bookworm was OK. Puzzle Quest Galactrix was a major disappointment, while Puzzle Kingdoms was a solid copy of Puzzle Quest Challenge of the Warlords, but far from being that

good. Zuma's Revenge was a great follow up to the popular casual game, with plenty of content to offer. Guess it's pretty clear who won.

Best producer:

Nominees:-Electronic Arts (EA)
-Pandemic Studios

WINNER: Pandemic Studios

Even though they do not exist anymore, Pandemic Studios deserve the title of Best Producer of 2009. First with Bionic Commando, but their piece of resistance was clearly The

Saboteur, an excellent game in which they clearly invested a lot of passion and love. Too bad it brought the end to them. My congratulations Pandemic! F**k you, EA!

Special Prize for "Best Worst Game" goes to Hunting Unlimited 2010.
Special Prize for "Worst Good Game" goes to FEAR 2 Project Origin and Resident Evil 5.

Worst game of 2009:

Nominees:-Stalin vs Martians (4.4)
-FIFA 10 (5)
-Painkiller Ressurection (4.8)
-Delta Force Xtreme 2 (3)

"WINNER": Painkiller Ressurection

I know I haven't written a blog here on GS in like...a month & a half, so I'll tell you a few words about how things are going...very well. :) School's OK, gaming is very well (finished Penubra Black Plague/Requiem, Burnout Paradise, Mirror's Edge & a couple of others). But what I'm really into right now is Heroes, you know the great sci-fi TV series, I almost watched the entire season 1 in three scooldays...that's something I am really proud of :D

But well, I wanted to tell you about , a great gaming-related site you should definitly check out. I guess I'll slowly move over to there, I'll still post on GS but not too often. I'll be happy if nutcrackr or monica or more of you buddies would register there :D .

we'll stay in touch :P

Best of 2008

So I guess you saw this comin' .I'm gonna show you my best of 2008, mostly games, but not only. Be warned, they are only PC games, so don't go looking for console ones. Let me start with games:

Best action game: Grand Theft Auto IV ;Mention: Dead Space

Best fighting game: Devil May Cry 4

Best driving game: GRID ; Mention: Pure

Best platformer: Tomb Raider Underworld ; Mention: Prince of Persia

Best puzzle game: World of Goo

Best music/rhythm game: Guitar Hero Aerosmith ; Mention: Audiosurf

Best RPG: Mass Effect ; Mention: Space Siege

Best FPS: Brothers in Arms-Hell's Highway ; Mention:Crysis Warhead

Best strategy game:The Political Machine 2008 ; Mention: King's Bounty-The Legend

Best adventure game: Sam & Max 2-04 Chariots of the Dogs ; Mention: Overclocked-A History of Violence

Best sports game: FIFA 09 ; Mention: NHL 09


Best graphics: Crysis Warhead ; Mention: FarCry 2

Best artistic graphics: STALKER-Clear Sky ; Mention: Devil May Cry 4

Best Sound: Dead Space ; Mention: Penumbra Black Plague

Best Music: Command & Conquer-Red Alert 3 ; Mention : Pure

Best voice-acting: Grand Theft Auto IV ; Mention: Mass Effect

Best story: Grand Theft Auto IV ; Mention: Overclocked-A History of Violence

Best atmosphere: Penumbra Black Plague ;Mentions: Dead Space & STALKER Clear Sky

Most Surprisingly good game: Quantum of Solace ; Mention: Lost Via Domus

Most disappointing game: SPORE ; Mention: Assassin's Creed

Best new character:Niko Bellic ( Grand Theft Auto IV) ; Mention: The Prince (Prince of Persia)

Best new universe: Mass Effect

Best expansion pack: Crysis Warhead ; Mention: Warhammer 40000 Dawn of War Soulstorm

Most original game: World of Goo ; Mention: SPORE

Best Content: Grand Theft Auto IV ; Mention : SPORE

Best multiplayer: Left4Dead ; Mention: Crysis Wars

Best boss fights : Devil May Cry 4 ; Mention: Prince of Persia

Most improved sequel: Grand Theft Auto IV

Least improved sequel: STALKER Clear Sky

Worst game: Legendary

Best game nobody played: The Political Machine 2008

Best Bad Game: Hunting Unlimited 2009

Worst Good Game: FarCry 2

Best producer: EA ; Mention: Ubisoft

My game of the year nominees:

-Devil May Cry 4

-Dead Space

-Brothers in Arms-Hell's Highway

-Grand Theft Auto IV

-Penumbra Black Plague

-World of Goo

-Mass Effect


-Crysis Warhead

-The Political Machine 2008

-FIFA 09

-Sins of a Solar Empire

7th: Devil May Cry 4

With great ,stunning graphics, awesome sound effects & voice acting , a captivating story and, most importantly, the great gameplay full of action, Devil May Cry 4 is simply one of the best games of the year.

6th: Brothers in arms-Hell's Highway

A few flaws drag it down, but Hell's Higway finally game us a vision over WWII without any compromises. Clearly the best game in the genre, Hell's Highway impressed me deeply so it had to get in my tops.

5th: GRID

The aproximate 60 hours I spent playing GRID will never be forgotten. Sitting on the edge of my seat with my eyes pinned in the screen, my ice-cold fingers on the keyboard, sweating like hell not too f**k up the last turn of the race. How the hell could I forget this game?

4th: Dead Space

EA surprised me, really. I did not expect much from their alien shooter horror game, but it surpassed all my expectations & managed to be one of the best games I have ever played. Also, the "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" sang in that low, scared voice will never be forgotten. Thanks, EA!

3rd: Penumbra Black Plague

A game from Frictional Games, that managed to get into my top 3 games of the year & also in my top horror games of all time. These guys had hit me deeply with Penumbra Overture in 2007, now they scared me even more with this masterpiece. Play it, damn it. You'll thank me after...if your nerves survive,that is...

2nd: Mass Effect

If I try to forget about the oldie RPG games I grew up with...Baldur's Gate, Planescape Torment...then Mass Effect is the best RPG game ever made. Technically perfect in almost all areas, with such a compex (new) universe, populated by great characters, with awesome graphics/sound/story, Mass Effect may really be all what you wished for. It would have most definitely gotten the Game of the Year title, if it wasn't for...


I never had a second thought about this. The moment I touched its box, I knew this woul be the Game of the Year. It's so damn good, I can't even tell you how good it is, you just gotta play it. When I saw this game getting all those perfect ratings in the spring on the consoles, I expected a lot from it. It surpassed every expectation I could have had. It's like a dream come trough. Another thing to say about it, I'm a great fan of the series, but GTA IV seems to be my first game of the year from the series. They were all so close, but GTA III got owned by Mafia in 2002, GTA Vice City by Rise of Nations in 2003 & GTA San Andreas by Indigo Prophecy & Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic II-The Sith Lords in 2005. But in 2008, GTA IV has owned everything. All hail Rockstar & their game, which in my opinion, is the best game from the last 7 years. Yeah, the other one is Mafia.


-I voted SPORE as my biggest disappointment. I expected a lot from it, it managed to be just a good & very innovative game, but that was all. Nothing epic. Very good, but not epic. Too bad...

-Assassin's Creed was again a huge disappintment, managing to bore me to death because of the repetitive gameplay & boring action, despite the awesome graphics & really interesting story.

-You know that STALKER-Shadow of Chernobyl is my favorite shooter, so you can guess that STALKER Clear Sky disappointed me. It was an excellent game in the second half, but it was buggy & practically unplayable in its early release. Also, the producers didn't learn from their mistakes, making some things worse than in the previous game & adding very few things, recycling the rest. Once again, too bad...

-I just recently got Fallout 3, & I'm very sad about it. Fallout 1 & 2 are some of the best RPG games ever made, & Fallout 3 is just a bad Oblivion with guns, a game for console players to love, as far as i see. As a funny guy described it, "The Casual adventures of Captain Cook in the Sandbox Country of the Radioactive Cannibals" .Too bad that Bethesda screwed up the Fallout series...

-Need for Speed Undercover got me sick, i expected EA to do something outstanding but they screwed up so bad, that I consider it being one of the worst racing games ever, not to mention one of the worst games of the year. RIP, NFS series....

-Call of Duty World at War managed to disappoint me quite badly. With few great things in the plot, despite the great visuals & audio part, & a multiplayer exactly as in CoD 4, but worse implemented. Oh wel...

*BTW, I voted Space Siege as the 2nd best RPG in 2008. Strange, but despite being a game I rated 7.5 ,it was quite good & I think it deserves the title. I would have put The Witcher Enhanced Edition instead, a much better choice, but The Witcher was my RPG of the year in 2007 & it's basically the same game. And of course, as much as I tried, I couldn't put Fallout 3 there...I simply couldn't.

Also, for my other awards:

Best album: Black Ice (AC/DC) ; Mentions: Death Magnethic (Metallica) & Nostradamus (Judas Priest)

Best film:No Country for Old Men

So that's about it with my awards. Tell me what you think .

Happy New Year 2009!!!

HAPPY NEW YEAR 2009 !!!!!

It's just been midnight here in Romania, so we're in 2009 people. Happy New Year 2009 for all of you guys, let's hope for an even better year to come.

That being said, I'm off to get a bit drunk. Hey, maybe not just a bit...