The PlayStation 4 is on shelves and in homes. And while a few big upcoming games are only coming to the older generation (Kingdom Hearts 2.5, Persona 5, Assassin's Creed: Rogue), it's time to look back at the PlayStation 3 and its generation. Character platformers became rare, multiplayer shooters became pop culture forces, RPGs came back in a major way, and open world games became common. Gaming memories were made online with friends, late night trophy hunts drove us crazy, graphics became photo realistic and artistically beautiful, and storytelling in video games had a renaissance. It's the generation that changed gaming forever. Here are my 35 favorite PS3 games:
Here are some rules/guidelines:
- Games on the list must have been released on the PS3 before any other Sony platform and must be first released on a console from this generation (disqualifying "HD Collections" and "PS/PS2 Classics") [The one exception is any game that launched on the PS3 that previously existed on an older console.
- If a game released on the PS4 during the PS4's launch or after, it is disqualified.
- Games are based solely on their PlayStation 3 version, so don't expect to see Skyrim.
- This list does not take into account Game of the Year/Ultimate editions.
- Any annual sports game (Madden, FIFA, etc.) is represented by the best game in the series.
- DLC (including standalone spinoffs like Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon) are unaccounted for.
- Remakes are disqualified.
On to part one of the list:
Developer/Publisher: Media Molecule/Sony CE
LBP is a game that I fell in love with shortly after the infamous PSN outage of 2011, when the game was offered for free as an apology gift from Sony alongside a few other titles. From the tutorial level, it is undeniably charming and happy with a backbone of wonderfully innovative game engineering. But do not let the cuteness of Sackboy confuse you, LBP is a challenging game that requires perfect timing and some out-of-the-box thinking. Its Play, Create, Share feature is its contribution to gaming by letting players create levels and then share them with the online community to play. LBP will also be remembered for its catchy soundtrack that perfectly captures the spirit of the game.
Favorite Memory: After a terrible couple of days (2010 and 2011 were hard years for me personally), the tutorial level of LBP put a big, uplifting smile on my face.
Arkane Studios/Bethesda Softworks
In a year full of sequels and franchises, Dishonored stood out as not only the best new IP that year, but one of the best games that year. The team that created the eerie atmosphere of Bioshock 2 broke out with this stealth-based first-person action adventure that put you under the mask of Corvo, a royal bodyguard who was wrongfully framed for the murder of a secluded city's beloved empress. Corvo then seeks revenge on the true conspirators in the bleak, pandemic aftermath. Dishonored packs a unique, gothic art design that compliments the game's creepy atmosphere and tone. In terms of gameplay, few games do stealth gameplay better than Dishonored thanks to the game's tight controls and clever level design. Dishonored further stood out by offering its players freedom as to how they want to clear a level. Just be warned, the way you play changes the game world entirely.
Favorite memory: The masquerade ball is one of my favorite levels in any video game.
Archived GOTY Awards to its name: Best Innovation 2012, Best New IP 2012
33. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
Certainly a controversial game (read up on the unfortunate Infinity Ward/Activision clash if you haven't), but a fun one that I sunk days of gameplay into online nonetheless. And while the game is often bashed for being a rather lame sequel to Call of Duty 4, MW2 offered tremendous value even for $60. It came packed with a full-throttle roller coaster of a campaign that is iconic today, a series of cooperative "spec-ops" missions, and an addictive, obsessive multiplayer component. I believe that this is the last great game in the still titan-strong Call of Duty franchise. The main reason I say this is because competitive multiplayer is only as good as its map design and weapon balance. This was the last Call of Duty to offer great, fluid maps and a steady balance of power between weapons.
Favorite memory: Experiencing my first nuke killstreak, which was on Wasteland as a sniper.
32. Far Cry 3
2012 saw the glorious return to the presumed dead Far Cry franchise. It pleased old FC fans and welcomed many new ones such as myself with its action-packed open world, interesting characters, great FPS gameplay, and compelling story. The idea of this game is pretty frightening: a character named Jason Brody and his friends are captured during an island vacation. You play as Jason Brody, who sets himself free and becomes a crazed mass-murderer in search of revenge. At the end of the game (minor spoilers), Brody's reunited friends (and himself) feel scared about how he has become accustomed to killing. It's an idea that kind of makes fun of itself and similar games but also makes a statement. But all philosophy aside, the game featured an incredible open world filled with engaging activities, my favorite being taking down enemy outposts, where you had to methodically plan out your attack. Not that it mattered most of the time thanks to the unpredictable open world that featured deadly wildlife creatures that posed as wild cards.
Favorite memory: Every Vaas confrontation.
Archived GOTY awards: Runner-up GOTY 2012, Best Shooter 2012, Best Villain 2012 - Vaas Montenegro, Best Moment 2012 - Burning down Hoyt's weed plantation, Most-Improved Sequel 2012
31. Grand Theft Auto V
Rockstar North/Rockstar Games
GTA V is a game that crushed sales records and helped GTA become a worldwide pop culture phenomenon yet again. I personally did not care for GTA IV. I thought that the game was extremely bland, somewhat boring, and featured bad controls. It was an oft-regarded 10/10 upon its release that simply does not hold up today. GTA V on the other hand, was responsible for bringing back the Vice City/San Andreas fun to GTA. Frankly put, the game's size is truly amazing. There is so much to optionally do that it is overwhelming. You could easily sink 200+ hours into the single player alone. I personally never even touched the multiplayer, but that features even more activities to take part in. What makes this GTA one solid experience is the absolutely perfect driving controls, which you will need because GTA V consists of a lot of driving from A to B. But here's the thing: it never gets boring thanks to the city of Los Santos that feels alive. Also alive are the game's main missions which are action-packed and feature multiple ways to get the job done. What makes this game truly special and unique is the game feature that lets you seamlessly switch between the three great characters of Trevor, Franklin, and Michael.
Favorite Memory: The first bank heist mission where you escape on bikes. It was a "holy sh*t" moment.
Archived GOTY Awards: Most Anticipated 2012 (tied), Best Innovation 2013, Most Improved Sequel 2013
That concludes part I of VII of my Top 35 Favorite PS3 games countdown. It's a blog series that I've wanted to do for almost a year now, so it feels good to finally be sharing the list. As for what I've been up to in terms of video games, I finally just beat Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag. Infamous and MLB 14: The Show got in the way, but ACIV is definitely a game that I enjoyed playing. At times, the naval gameplay pissed me off and left me wanting more classic, on-foot AC. But I guess that's coming with Unity later on this year, which I am very excited for. One thing I noticed, and maybe it's because I played it over like five months, is that the characters got confusing. When a character was reintroduced and killed off, it seemed like it was meant to be a big deal but wasn't to me because I could vaguely remember them from the crowd of other characters. Overall, I liked the game quite a bit and would give it an 8.5/10. Oh, and I loved the ending and the mid-credits scene :) Part II should be up next week, so look for that. Thanks for reading and please comment :)
Videogame Music of the Day: Dishonored - Main Theme