Zero Punctuation: Top 5 of 2012

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gridsleep:
Couple of sequels in there. Yeh, all right. Do you think your job would be both easier and more rewarding, oh, and more meaningful, if you just did not review sequels? No 2s or 3s or 4s, just original titles and to hell with the rest? Or would that leave you with too few games to review for an entire year?

I think the answer is both. Spec Ops - btw - is technically a sequel to a long dead franchise. Sequels also tend to be not as fresh or interesting as their predecessors. THough as games stake their place as franchises and brand recognition, it'd be hard to review a year of fewer and fewer fresh IPs.

Epyc Wyn:
Kind of disappointed you didn't list Rayman Origins.

Rayman Origins came out in 2011. Rayman Legends hasn't been released yet.

JoaoJatoba:

Again I call out for Katawa Shoujo, that has multiple storylines, each of them really well written and character-focused.

I highly recommend Alpha Protocol for branching storylines. The game completely shifts and changes based on your choices, which is precisely why Yahtzee was so confused by the story.

JoaoJatoba:

I'm still on the middle of episode 3, so let's see what the games presents me from now on.

Nevertheless, my point is, they said that the story and gameplay fits my choices, and I don't see that happening, i.e., whatever choices I make, I'll end up seeing the same major events of the story that you saw on episode 4 and 5. The difference is who is going to be alive and who will like me or not, I'm guessing...

But, with all that, The Walking Dead still a GREAT GAME! =)

Seriously, do yourself a favor and play through the entire run blind first. Then after do another playthrough if you want. The game is definitely "tailored" to your choices, the plot is not. At the moment you're ruining that illusion. There is no optimal way to play. There are no "good" choices. Still every choice you make reflects on you as a player. I was also disappointed for awhile until I stopped experimenting with the choices and trying to work my way around it. The first run through is the most personal. The rest are more and more experimental.

Also - keep in mind that "silence" is a dialog option.

And no, the plot will not change. Not by much. But some characters will have different arcs. Others will simply not change no matter how hard you try (they're stubborn like that - and I like that about the game).

IronMit:
This makes up for escapist crowning Mass effect 3 as game of the year.

The only reason I am on this site is because of Yahtzee/ zero punctuation.

I will be playing spec ops the line and walking dead now.

I agree with Dishonored just about making it into the list. Lots of average games this year so a good game like dishonoured can edge it. Impressive for a new IP, a sequel can iron out a lot of the issues and balancing. Not sure what they are going to do with the story though

Also Yahtzee seems to hate Mass Effect.

mjc0961:

Caffeine_Bombed:
In general? Or was there a specific list you were thinking of?
Cuz The Escapist already did theirs and it was bloody Mass Effect...

What? Really? They actually crowned Mass Effect 3 game of the year? It wasn't just an editing error and the list was supposed to be called most disappointing games of 2012? What the fuck? I guess the list must have been made by the same geniuses who think it's a good idea to make everyone prove they aren't a spambot daily, because after 3 years of membership I might just decide to randomly become a spambot.

Yep, and it was People's Choice. Just narrowly beat Journey and The Walking Dead.

Well, I know I'm in the decided minority, but I couldn't stand The Walking Dead. Chalk it up to burnout on zombies, burnout on grimdark storylines, or whatall, but it just didn't sit in with me. It also seems to crib heavily in premise from The Road. The fact that its less a game then a visual choose your own adventure book kind of clicks me off a bit too.

Most of the rest I can more or less agree with, though in Yahtzee's own logic, Dishonored should get credit for trying reasonably new stuff as much as Neverdead?

For my own part, I had Dishonored, Dragons Dogma, Far Cry 3, Tokyo Jungle, and Dark Souls. I don't play nearly enough games for that even to come off entirely credible, nevermind a Worst of category, but I will give some Dishonorable mention to Twisted Metal PS3 (I think that was this year anyhow) and Soulcalibur V.

And on the biggest disappointment note, Assassins Creed 3. Campaign wise, "Whats with you and not stabbing people?!" is pretty apt. As for the rest, if they can't come up with some sort of way to provide randomized assassinations by the next one, they should give up on sandboxing. Sandbox games work if you can engage in the core mechanic in the sandbox, AC's sandboxing is like having GTA without any cars to steal. Hunting/Animal Assassinating was sort of a half-in cop out, but ultimately pointless, and spoiled by the animals having radar level senses, and penalizing you for killing them in anything but the most tedious way.

MegaManOfNumbers:

FallenMessiah88:
The only thing this list did was to remind me how few games I have acutally played this year. I still have a lot of catching up to do.

Also, spunkgargleweewee is still a really stupid term.

I believe that's the point of the newfangled terminology.

Perhaps, but that still doesn't make it any less stupid. People claim that it's to distinguish between different sub genres of shooters which is all fine and good. The problem is that it's a derotagory term. I don't particularly like romantic comedies, but I don't go around using terms like "Kissykissypukebarf" to describe them.

jmarquiso:

SNIP

Please don't multiple post. If you want to talk to multiple people, just edit your quote into a previous post. E.G.:

Person a:

WORDS WORDS WORDS

Words words words? Words words words.... WORDS WORDS WORDS!

EDIT:

person b:

Words words words words....

WORDS WORDS WORDS.

EDIT 2:

Person C:

Words words words?

Words.

Etc., etc., you get the idea.

FallenMessiah88:

MegaManOfNumbers:

FallenMessiah88:
The only thing this list did was to remind me how few games I have acutally played this year. I still have a lot of catching up to do.

Also, spunkgargleweewee is still a really stupid term.

I believe that's the point of the newfangled terminology.

Perhaps, but that still doesn't make it any less stupid. People claim that it's to distinguish between different sub genres of shooters which is all fine and good. The problem is that it's a derotagory term. I don't particularly like romantic comedies, but I don't go around using terms like "Kissykissypukebarf" to describe them.

well you should because that's what I'm going to do from now on. Much better and more obvious way to present my hatred instead of sputtering "romcom" with utter disgust.

TJC:

FallenMessiah88:

MegaManOfNumbers:

I believe that's the point of the newfangled terminology.

Perhaps, but that still doesn't make it any less stupid. People claim that it's to distinguish between different sub genres of shooters which is all fine and good. The problem is that it's a derotagory term. I don't particularly like romantic comedies, but I don't go around using terms like "Kissykissypukebarf" to describe them.

well you should because that's what I'm going to do from now on. Much better and more obvious way to present my hatred instead of sputtering "romcom" with utter disgust.

I would actually prefer to use the word "romcom", especially if I wan't people to take my opinion seriously.

Sylveria:

Caffeine_Bombed:

amiran123:
If the Walking Dead or Journey isn't game of the year i'll be pissed.

In general? Or was there a specific list you were thinking of?
Cuz The Escapist already did theirs and it was bloody Mass Effect...

Of course it was.. you saw how much advertising ME3 had here and how fervently most of The Escapist contributors were to defend EA and condemn the consumer outcry.

If you find this site to be so corrupt, why don't you just leave?

Also, I have an idea... Maybe it was the Escapist GOTY because a lot of people here actually liked it. [incoming sarcasm] Na you're probably right I'm sure the site's been bribed by EA. [/sarcasm] And before you go screaming things like "you're just defending them because you're a Mass Effect fanboy", I'd like to tell you that I didn't even vote for it for GOTY. I liked it, but not as much as Borderlands 2. Also, I hated the ending as much as most people but the EC fixed most of my problems with it.

Anyway... OT:
Pretty solid list Yahtzee. I know how you hated Borderlands 2 so it came as no surprise to see its absence. All of those games you listed were great. My favourite from your list is Dishonored.

I haven't played any of the worst games but they all look quite dreadful.

FallenMessiah88:

MegaManOfNumbers:

FallenMessiah88:
The only thing this list did was to remind me how few games I have acutally played this year. I still have a lot of catching up to do.

Also, spunkgargleweewee is still a really stupid term.

I believe that's the point of the newfangled terminology.

Perhaps, but that still doesn't make it any less stupid. People claim that it's to distinguish between different sub genres of shooters which is all fine and good. The problem is that it's a derotagory term. I don't particularly like romantic comedies, but I don't go around using terms like "Kissykissypukebarf" to describe them.

That's the whole point mate. He's sick of seeing these samey, bland, mainstream appealing, triple AAA FPS's and believes they are the lowest form of gaming, so he's giving them a name that he thinks suits these games.

Sometimes artists do controversial things like this, and it's completely understandable that not everyone can follow their notion, or just thinks it's silly because everyone likes to do things differently. He's made his point though, Croshaw made it very clear what he is sick of seeing in modern day shooters. So you can think of it as it ticks him off as much as this term ticks you off.

FallenMessiah88:
I would actually prefer to use the word "romcom", especially if I wan't people to take my opinion seriously.

Maybe from the beginning when these repetitive military shooters were being over developed, but it's been going on for so long now that it doesn't really matter if certain people can't take you seriously. I think this new name is the step up from that, making it clear where you stand on the issue.

I'm curious if Yahtzee would name CoD4 SGWW, I found that game to be a really good experience.

Mostly unsurprisingly choices but i am suprised to see dishonored taking the number 5 spot.

weirdguy:

Balkan:

Baldry:
FINALLY. Some list agrees spec ops is the game of the year, I can die happy.

I'm here, friend. The unpopularity of the line just shows the state of the industry. The game is a mind fuckingly amazing, but people won't buy it, because the reviewers gave it an 8 and not a 9.

No, I think it's more about the poor mechanics, and that playing it is exactly like hitting yourself in the face with the history book as illustrated in the video. Some people don't want to buy a game that's really, really not fun, and I can respect that. In fact, it's sort of wise to avoid it because you can't really stop playing it once you get into it like in that movie Saw where you have to cut your leg off to escape.

So, you respect someone missing on a great game just because its not fun? Why should be judge Spec Ops for it's fun factor, when the game has different goals? I mean, games are so varied, why are people judge them only on how much fun they had? Games are not toys anymore, people should learn this if they think that games are art.
Also, why are people saying that the gameplay was bad? It wasn't worse than say Gears of war, and people seem to like that game. It was competent enough to get you through the story, the actually important bit.

I'm honestly not surprised Spec Ops: The Line made Yahtzee's No.1 game of the year since he gushed so much about it. I haven't played it and have no interest to, frankly, but I read the Wiki page on it and it does sound like it has a complex and detailed plot. Dunno about a 'good' one, though, since it sounds extremely similar to a lot of modern Hollywood movies that are all about painting the American military in a bad light. Which is what leads me to wonder: did Yahtzee like it so much for complex characters, character development, an intriguing, thought-provoking plot...or did he just get a big stiffy over something that took a great big shit on the U.S. Army and gave him the chance to kill characters that were American?

WaitWHAT:

jmarquiso:

SNIP

Please don't multiple post. If you want to talk to multiple people, just edit your quote into a previous post. E.G.:

Person a:

WORDS WORDS WORDS

Words words words? Words words words.... WORDS WORDS WORDS!

EDIT:

person b:

Words words words words....

WORDS WORDS WORDS.

EDIT 2:

Person C:

Words words words?

Words.

Etc., etc., you get the idea.

The problem with this is that quoting someone in an edit means that your post doesn't show up in their inbox, which is how most people keep track of things.

jmarquiso:
I think the answer is both. Spec Ops - btw - is technically a sequel to a long dead franchise. Sequels also tend to be not as fresh or interesting as their predecessors. THough as games stake their place as franchises and brand recognition, it'd be hard to review a year of fewer and fewer fresh IPs.

Actually, a lot of sequels, remakes and spiritual successors have been really, really good:
*Half-Life 2
*Portal (spiritual successor of Narbacular Drop)
*Skyrim
*Silent Hill 2
*Prince of Persia: Sands of Time
*Assassins Creed 2
*Arkham Asylum (not the first batman game by a long shot)
*Doom II (probably my favorite game of all time)

"Spec ops: the Line" sounds like one of those titles that sacfrice fun to make an "artistic" Point that immediatelly falls flat on its ass because when "the Game tells me to do something" it's often the best Choice i and/or the Character could make based on the Information presented. It is very hard to avoid this and i doubt anyone in the entire industry is even capable of doing this once, let alone through an entire game, seeing how companies who rely on story to drive their games fail regularly at rather simple moral dilemmas.

But Yahtzee recommended it, so i will give it a chance.

I love how unscrambling the box art was blatantly part of the video this time.

DataSnake:

jmarquiso:
I think the answer is both. Spec Ops - btw - is technically a sequel to a long dead franchise. Sequels also tend to be not as fresh or interesting as their predecessors. THough as games stake their place as franchises and brand recognition, it'd be hard to review a year of fewer and fewer fresh IPs.

Actually, a lot of sequels, remakes and spiritual successors have been really, really good:
*Half-Life 2
*Portal (spiritual successor of Narbacular Drop)
*Skyrim
*Silent Hill 2
*Prince of Persia: Sands of Time
*Assassins Creed 2
*Arkham Asylum (not the first batman game by a long shot)
*Doom II (probably my favorite game of all time)

I didn't say "bad", I said "not as fresh". I will say generally sequels are generally a similar game, but made with more money. I'd argue that Portal and Arkham Asylum are the beginnings of their own respective franchises rather than sequels, but I guess if we get pedantic -

On his list the sequels were the top 3:

*Spec Ops: The Line
*XCOM: Enemy Unknown
*Far Cry 3

As well as the top "Worst":

* Medal of Honor: Warfighter
* Steel Batallion
* Resident Evil 6

He actually has quite a few sequels in this list - but that's a different point.

OhJohnNo:

The problem with this is that quoting someone in an edit means that your post doesn't show up in their inbox, which is how most people keep track of things.

Me, it's obviously personal preference, right? I access these forums at irregular hours, and got a little carried away.

interestingly the five games i got for/bought with money from Christmas identically matched the top 5

I so predicted you were gonna put Dishonored on 5th Best, just as you mentioned the Moral Choice system. Lo was it so.

Gleeful joy as I was rooting for Spec Ops :)

Very entertaining. I especially appreciated the Dungeon Keeper reference. Loved that game.

The 2nd time Yahtzee mentioned RE6 without talking about how the 6 looks like... what it looks like.

Triforceformer:
Modern military shooter takes top slot, indie-developed survival horror game is the game Yahtzee considers even worse than Kane and Lynch. The Mayans weren't predicting end times, they were predicting the year the game's industry went snooker loopy.

The modern military shooter was great in this instance, the indie survival horror game was shitty in this instance. However, this year we also saw Lone Survivor, an indie survival horror game, but we also a saw Warfighter, a shitty modern military shooter. That just proves that both genres have their own fuck-ups and triumphs.

jmarquiso:

JoaoJatoba:

Again I call out for Katawa Shoujo, that has multiple storylines, each of them really well written and character-focused.

I highly recommend Alpha Protocol for branching storylines. The game completely shifts and changes based on your choices, which is precisely why Yahtzee was so confused by the story.

JoaoJatoba:

I'm still on the middle of episode 3, so let's see what the games presents me from now on.

Nevertheless, my point is, they said that the story and gameplay fits my choices, and I don't see that happening, i.e., whatever choices I make, I'll end up seeing the same major events of the story that you saw on episode 4 and 5. The difference is who is going to be alive and who will like me or not, I'm guessing...

But, with all that, The Walking Dead still a GREAT GAME! =)

Seriously, do yourself a favor and play through the entire run blind first. Then after do another playthrough if you want. The game is definitely "tailored" to your choices, the plot is not. At the moment you're ruining that illusion. There is no optimal way to play. There are no "good" choices. Still every choice you make reflects on you as a player. I was also disappointed for awhile until I stopped experimenting with the choices and trying to work my way around it. The first run through is the most personal. The rest are more and more experimental.

Also - keep in mind that "silence" is a dialog option.

And no, the plot will not change. Not by much. But some characters will have different arcs. Others will simply not change no matter how hard you try (they're stubborn like that - and I like that about the game).

First, Gonna check out Alpha Protocol.

Second, Dude!

http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=117825586

If a GAME says it'll change based on how I play and that the GAME adapts to the choices I make, I greatly expect that either the gameplay or the story will change (gameplay + story = video game, for me), which I just didn't see happening so far. That's my only complain about TWD! They say on the first title screen that and that doesn't happen.

I get WHAT the game is about! It's about relations. It's about Lee and Clementine, how the grow together and how they interact with the other characters, and not about how you can change your fate. On the story level, it's wonderful and beautiful, but it doesn't change the fact that I, and I alone, feel there is an unfulfilled promise that the designers of the game stamped on the front of each episode. If that little warning before each episode was not on the game, I would not be ranting at all.

jmarquiso:

IronMit:
This makes up for escapist crowning Mass effect 3 as game of the year.

The only reason I am on this site is because of Yahtzee/ zero punctuation.

I will be playing spec ops the line and walking dead now.

I agree with Dishonored just about making it into the list. Lots of average games this year so a good game like dishonoured can edge it. Impressive for a new IP, a sequel can iron out a lot of the issues and balancing. Not sure what they are going to do with the story though

Also Yahtzee seems to hate Mass Effect.

I wouldn't say he hates Mass Effect, just that he thinks there's too much story and not enough game and that the gameplay isn't strong enough to hold everything up and certain aspects of the game suffer because of it. I'd say he rips on it about the same as most other games he reviews.

JoaoJatoba:
There is a seed of this kind of games in the Visual Novel genre (see Katawa Shoujo). If only someone could make it work in a smaller scale in a regular game...

I'm no stranger to Visual Novels, I think that Fate/Stay Night is a brilliant piece of storytelling, as is Higurashi, but many of them are just as "fake nonlinear" as TWD, or (as in case of FSN) completely linear with choices like "A - continue the story. B - die".

Premise of Katawa Shoujo isn't really my pair of jeans, but if you know some other good non-linear VN's, which are possible to find without +75 Staff of Improved Internet Search, and there's a decent translation of them, then I would love to check them out.

OhJohnNo:
-snip-

jmarquiso:
-snip-

If you hit quote for each different person they will stack up in the 'Reply to Thread' box.

All you have to do is snip the posts and Bam! everyone gets a quoted message in their inbox!

It'll help keep other posters and (possibly) mods off your case.

I don't think Yahtzee hates Mass Effect, he just has large subjective quibble with it which he doesn't mention much because it would be unfair to critique it on the basis of not having the kind of 'feel' he likes. He doesn't like the writing in the same way he doesn't like the writing in Uncharted, though to a lesser degree. Personally I can fully sympathize because I'm also insulted when the game throws a character at me who's genetically engineered to be as attractive as possible, has daddy issues, an out of place Australian accent, and constantly reminds you how great her genes are in the midst of flirting with you. I think Yahtzee likes a more flawed protagonist in his sci-fi, and the attitude of Mass Effect is often to make you feel as badass as possible, and then the RPG dialogue also makes Shepard incredibly dull. I think he's handled his dislike of Mass Effect very fairly, they're dispassionate reviews but always fair. It isn't his fault a game that he doesn't really like doesn't end up in his 'best of' for this year.

I remember looking at the screens and previews for Amy and being excited. It's a shame it turned out this way.
Silent Hill 4 even managed to make escorting in a survival horror setting not completely shite (alright, it was pretty bad, I went through those candles like quarters on laundry day).

Interesting pick for best game, I'm glad of the disclaimer. I don't think anyone (omitting the intended audience of single minded shooter lovers) should go into that game expecting an enjoyable experience. I waited for it to go on sale partially because I doubt I'll ever play it a second time.

Balkan:

weirdguy:

Balkan:

I'm here, friend. The unpopularity of the line just shows the state of the industry. The game is a mind fuckingly amazing, but people won't buy it, because the reviewers gave it an 8 and not a 9.

No, I think it's more about the poor mechanics, and that playing it is exactly like hitting yourself in the face with the history book as illustrated in the video. Some people don't want to buy a game that's really, really not fun, and I can respect that. In fact, it's sort of wise to avoid it because you can't really stop playing it once you get into it like in that movie Saw where you have to cut your leg off to escape.

So, you respect someone missing on a great game just because its not fun? Why should be judge Spec Ops for it's fun factor, when the game has different goals? I mean, games are so varied, why are people judge them only on how much fun they had? Games are not toys anymore, people should learn this if they think that games are art.
Also, why are people saying that the gameplay was bad? It wasn't worse than say Gears of war, and people seem to like that game. It was competent enough to get you through the story, the actually important bit.

I'm just saying, it's a choice, and I'm not going to condemn somebody for not playing this game, unless they try to impose their opinions on other people. Hell, nobody's forced to look at or like any sort of art, if we're going by that comparison.
As for the mechanics thing, it's important to note that the previews/advertising pushed the mechanics much harder than the game's actual purpose, so it's important to note that people may have just stopped playing the game before it got interesting based on that alone, seeing as there is no indication that the rest of the game will be much different up to that point (partly because the developers made a point of having the first part of the game be typical in order to provide contrast to the future gut punching).

xdiesp:

shintakie10:
The second line is the important part. The game isn't about point A to point B, its what happens between point A and point B. The interactions between the characters, how they see you, and how you see your own character are what the game is about.

Without interactivity, you might as well be watching a cutscene. Surely you are not deluding yourself of being playing a game if all you do is watch...

There is interactivity though. Its not like you just sit there watchin scene to scene like a movie. You do stuff between scenes, you interact with characters in real time (its actually mildly amusin to do a playthrough where you're pretty much silent the whole time), you can fail if all you plan to do is sit back and watch durin multiple areas.

Is it the most interactive thing ever? Nope. However a game shouldn't lose points simply because its less interactive than other games, much like we usually don't give rewards to games that are incredibly one dimensional but super fun to play.

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