Games of 2010

2010 was a good year for video games. So good that I haven’t had a chance to play them all. Fallout New Vegas and Red Dead Redemption were both games that I was looking forward to but I have yet to get to them. Their times will come but they miss out on this best of list.

5. Super Meat Boy – Xbox Live
Super Meat Boy is a good little downloadable game where you play as the titular Meat Boy trying to save your girlfriend Bandage Girl from the evil Dr Fetus. This is platform gaming at its best, but also at its most difficult. The best thing is when you spend twenty minutes trying to complete a level and finally do, the sense of achievement is great and the replay showing all your little meat boys trying to get to the end with just the one meat boy making it.

4. Alan Wake – Xbox 360
Alan Wake is a good game where you are attacked by the darkness, the game world is based on Washington state and includes some wonderful forest scenes. The game itself is pretty spooky as well and the controls and physics work wonderfully to help build the suspense.

3. Split/Second – Xbox 360
This game does what burnout did all those years ago when it first arrived. Its another racing game where anything goes. This game though employs strong rubber banding in its racing which makes it more difficult to dominate but also makes it more fun with a group of friends at different levels. The crunch to Split/Second is its power plays, build up your power bar and you can make things explode around/fall on other racers hence the name of the game. This game lives on its split screen multiplayer, when you narrowly avoid a girder thrust in your direction by your friend only for them to be taken out by it, that is what games are about. That it is made by Disney made me laugh but this game is the best of the racing bunch from 2010.

2. Super Mario Galaxy 2 – Wii
This game improves on everything the first game did, the controls are tighter, the graphics are even better, the music is still fantastic and Nintendo continues to prove that they are the masters of level design. The game is absolutely wonderful and an enjoyable experience throughout. Other improvements include a less annoying hub world where you can quickly get between levels or play around on a planetoid shaped on your face. Mario Galaxy the first narrowly missed out on my best game of the decade last year to the first Mass Effect game, annoyingly for Galaxy 2 it misses out to…

1. Mass Effect 2 – Xbox 360
Yup you guessed it. Mass Effect 2 came out early in the year but it blew me away. The story continues wonderfully from the first game and the characters and their back stories are fun to discover. The graphics have gotten better and then game has become slightly less of a hardcore RPG and has moved towards the mainstream. This is largely for the better as the controls are now much improved on consoles (the original was a pig). I need my fix of Mass Effect 3 but for that I must wait another 11 months…

I did play a lot of games this year but these five shone out above the others. F1 2010 was my most anticipated game of the year but then, I am like that. Unfortunately it let the side down in places with some sloppy coding but it set the stage for 2011 and it will hopefully make this list next year. Also good were Professor Layton and Super Scribblenauts both for Nintendo DS but they just missed out.