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27 December, 2011

The Top 10 Video Games of 2011 I Haven’t Played Yet

As Seen at Good Game Media


Working for a video game company the last year and a half (almost), it should be appropriate that I make a “Top 10 of 2011” games list due to my apparent love of all games. However, it has come to my attention this year marks a record year I have barely picked up a single game to play. I blame myself.

So in a last ditch effort I’ve decided to complete the review “The Top 10 Games of 2011” only I’ll review them based on what I’ve heard and/or the box art or something. Don’t worry; we’ll get through this together. Without further adieu, I present to you my top 10 list of games I haven’t played yet, or kind of played, or basically played - almost.



10. Bastion

This is on my list as number 10 pretty much because I’ve never heard of it in my life. The box art shows a kind of crudely drawn, anime type boy looking menacingly over a cliff with what looks to be some kind of hammer. He has white hair so I'm assuming it’s just trying to be edgy or he is in fact, very old.

The screenshots look like some kind of RTS layout, looked at from a bird’s eye view. The game says it’s an RPG about a boy and his hammer and all kind of trouble, or what I would call, a typical Saturday night, amirite?!

Apparently you meet a stranger who looks identical to you, only with a bad ass hulk Hogan mustache, and you collect some objects and magical potions it looks like. This actually reminds me a lot of this game I played as a kid, but I forget the name of it because it wasn’t very good.
I rate this game 2 Thor’s hammers out of 5 Odin’s, because the interview with the creative team looks like a cozy little crew I may pretend I have met simply for the fact no one will know who they are and question it.


9. L.A. Noire

This is by Rockstar, and apparently it was a long time in the works. I’ve heard mixed reviews, some day that it is an absolute stroke of genius where each character has a ‘tell’ and you can actually play sleuth.

Then I’ve heard that it seems a bit like World of Warcraft, where apparently everyone is collecting the same shit over and over, the head of this guy, 5 feathers, etc. It gets really monotonous and tedious being stuck in the same kind of “let’s solve this mystery! No, this one! Now this one!” mentality over and over.

It’s set in some kind of 40’s or 20’s backdrop (my history teacher is shaking his head), something film noir-ish anyway, where they wore those Dick Tracy hats and didn’t have as much Roger Rabbit.
I'm actually not sure what the plot is about, but because it’s Rockstar I'm rightly assuming that it’s about killing hookers and listening to Flock of Seagulls while running over people… while solving mysteries?


8. Portal 2

Portal 2 is the successor to Portal, and if not then it certainly goes for that mantra with the name. Portal was about using a gun that shoots time holes into objects so you could warp into rooms and stuff. Also I think you’re escaping a lab, and they have some cake you’re not allowed to have. And apparently it’s a lie. I only know this because the Portal song was in my ex-boyfriend’s Rock Band game and I was forced to sing it once.

As a sequel (if it is) you’re probably escaping the same lab, or something pretty similar to it again, or some kind of scenario where you find yourself needing to warp places. I’ve seen a lot of memes online where pictures of people misusing the portal gun ended up in mass hilarity and I’ll be honest I never played the first one so they all go over my head.


7. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3

So this game is the jock’s version of geeking out. This game is what dumb men play when they don’t know how to use a rubrics cube properly, or hold a gun in real life. If they do, then this game is the jock equivalent to the game Magic: The Gathering by the simple fact everyone playing is not an actual geek.

I'm assuming this game is like all the other COD games, and you’re helping your army group/base/team infiltrate multiple curiously similar locales, while trying to not get shot and/or help your group/base/team get to the end/capture the flag/pass the baton/duck duck goose your way through to the goal/end.

I know this game is an LOL online and most jocks use it to shit talk 12 year olds while laughing into their discount canned beer. Sometimes I imagine that if we ever were invaded, the world’s supply of chubby, albino, and pre-pubescent teens would take us to a solid victory.


6. Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception

Ok so I have legitimately played a bit of this game, or at least one of them. Basically the issue here is you are Drake Uncharted (joke) and you are some kind of investigator or illegal smuggler or something, and your old partner used you as a scapegoat to steal something valuable and blame it on you. Oh wait that was the second one, but it still counts because it creates back-story (see what I did there?).

So in this one I'm sure some guy played you as a bitch and you’re trying to avenge yourself from your apparent deception, or try to steal/find something while going on missions to discreet and dangerous areas of the world. It seems as though the game starts with a firey... Zeppelin crash (?) plane, hot air balloon?, which Drake must chart his way out of. The actual game-play for the little time I have played is kind of fun I’ll admit because you get tossed into some cool scenarios and the cut scenes are pretty rad. This game was really highly regarded when it came out and people were really excited when it did come out, so that counts for something.


5. Star Wars: The Old Republic

So this game is basically World of Warcraft only with sci-fi nerds instead of fantasy ones. So instead of a Jamaican Troll you get to pick a Jedi, and instead of a faction like Horde or Alliance you can pick the Jedi side or the Darth Vader side. I'm sure the same dudes will be wandering around with big yellow question marks over their head as per usual MMORPG.

This game got the nerds really pumped, and all I heard for a while was “what race will you be” or “what side are you going with?” or “you’re a pussy bitch, Jedi is dumbshit!” of course I'm paraphrasing.

The moral of the story is that it is an MMO, so missed showers, starving babies and/or internet trash talking 10 year olds on their moms Macbook will be inevitable. *NOTE* I just looked it up and this game is not able to run on Mac (surprise!), so let me switch that with “10 year olds on their mom’s Windows XP Gateway.”


4. The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

Ok so I’ve been avoiding this one because I love Zelda and I have just not had the opportunity to sit down and hash this thing out. I played a few hours only and from that I can tell you the controller style is very different but it works with the game-play. I thought it was going to be annoying, as my hand cramped the first time I played – that could also be from the only time I’ve exercised in 4 years – but it turned out really interesting and allows for more movement and interactions, with direct control over your Skylofts and Link.

The art style is also different, like a mix of some kind of water colour painting, cell shading, and a Dr. Seuss book, but I welcomed the new art style as even though I was apprehensive with The Wind Waker, it turned out to be an amazing addition to the series.

The music and game-play is also enticing, the locales are expansive, and are very adverse for newcomers. I was lost in the forest a few times until I got the hang out it, but the areas are beautifully designed and gives Link the feeling of ultimate non-linear exploration, even though the game is more linear than an MMO. Overall I'm excited to play it more, and I think it will be a great game for a great series.


3. Batman: Arkham City

Now, I played Batman: Arkham Asylum so I feel that I'm qualified to write this review. I actually also watched someone play Arkham City for a few minutes so I'm pretty sure I will rock this shit.

So basically: you’re Batman. Already you’re not off to a great start but whatever. Looks like some villains are HOLY SHIT loose in Arkham City and guess the fuck what? You get to round them up like some kind of black silicon-suit sheepdog. So I'm pretty sure Joker is the main villain, voiced by Luke Skywalker as per usual. The game received some pretty high praise and I think that’s mostly due to the fact Mark Hamill is lending his voice. That or the bloody knuckles Batman is posing with on the box art.

I also hear you can beat the game again with Catwoman, or at least play as Catwoman for a few levels. That seems pretty cool. There’s also joker related challenges or objects you collect to provide a game longevity it would otherwise not have. As someone who has a Batman t-shirt and heard the hype about this game, I'm sure it’s probably good, at least better then Duke Nukem.


2. Duke Nukem Forever

Speaking of, this game is the latest installment from an old school series about a violent, asshole type douchebag who hates women and loves cigars. He likes to fight and shoot up people, aliens, and you know, women.

He kind of reminds me of that cartoon guy, Johnny Bravo. Johnny Bravo or a really old G.I. Joe, only less hair gel and more orgies. Less hair gel because the natural state of his 50 year old hair line makes keeping hair on his head an impossibility, and likely because he has more hair on his back than a Direwolf, to make up for it.

Also he kind of reminds me of a guy I used to date for that reason.

“He was like a wolf?”

“He was like a dog.” 

Woof.



1. Skyrim

This game gets #1 spot on my reviews of games I never actually played, because even my non nerdy friends are playing it. I heard about Oblivion- I heard about it so many times a few years ago, how it possessed the people playing it into some kind of Mountain Dew filled coma with expansive RPG landscape and story of assassins or something.

Now all I hear are “arrow to the knee” jokes and how many brooms you have collected. All the YouTube videos on how to steal from shopkeepers by putting buckets over their head, how you can absolutely own a fucking dragon with your sword, run your horse off a cliff, and other really amazing design and art details included. I’ve heard the art actually changes as the day progresses in-game, and how every stone has texturing, every puddle has an accurate AI reflection, every tree has individual bark lines, and how all the landscapes are reminiscent of something out of a dream – more realistic than any photo from Ansel Adams.

Every action has an equal and opposite reaction, it reminds me of Black and White by Lionhead Studios, which is the first game I ever heard of that had this implemented. Lionhead Studios eventually followed up with one of the greatest reaction games every sold - Fable - where every choice has a consequence and every consequence a choice.

I'm actually very interested in picking this up due to the overwhelming hype surrounding it, and the quirks that make it unique, such as horses beating down dragons trying to save you, or your maid/house keeper playing a role in your adventure by accident. Hopefully I will be able to set aside 2 years of my life in order to commit to this game, as I once did with World of Warcraft. I was going to buy it for my PS3 but then I got an arrow to the knee.


Happy Holidays from Clover Quips
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