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This year was great in general for videogames. Beyond the predictable success of games like Halo 4 and Call of Duty: Black Ops II, there were a ton of hits that came out of nowhere, including not just big publisher titles, but indie games as well. Narrative in gaming also started taking a greater stage with games such as Spec Ops: The Line and our very own game of the year,The Walking Dead, making waves with player agency in story and presenting well-developed plots and characters to boot.
The year wasn't entirely sparkles, double rainbows, and purple fairies though. Along with the good came a hoard of bad for the industry. There were a mass number of studio closures, for starters. Here's a recap of some of the many development studios that didn't make it through the year. Out of respect for the subject matter, this list is not presented in any particular order.
When a stack of releases lands on our desks every week, they can't all be winners, but that doesn't mean the rest have to be losers, either.
Prowl your local bargain bin, make some eBay searches, and keep your eyes out for a Steam sale, because the games below are worth it -- even if they didn't place in our game of the year awards. Consider them our honorable mentions or personal favorites that just didn't stand a chance, either due to being misunderstood or not played at all. Whatever the case may be, we feel a need to celebrate them in some fashion because they are worth giving a chance.
Next time you come across one of these on sale, refer back to this list and feel free to thanks us for a wise purchase.
MAGFest is hands down my favorite event of the year. The music and gaming festival not only features an endless buffet of both these things, it also has a lot more on offer as it grows each and every year.
We've already mentioned that Kinuyo Yamashita and Yuzo Koshiro will be attending, as well as listed all the bands performing this year, but that's just the beginning. Join us for five reasons you need to be in National Harbor, Maryland, for four days of madness starting Thursday, January 3, 2013.
Most game covers are forgettable and generic, but a select few transcend into levels of such awfulness that they stick with us all year long, like a never-ending scab. From cheap shovelware to incredibly awkward sports photos, a bad game cover can come from any publisher. It takes a particularly lazy and clueless one to land on this list though.
Count the number of THQ titles below and come to your own conclusions. THQ, thanks for raising the bar on terrible box art.
Exactly 25 years ago today, my favorite videogame hero of all time was born. Exactly 25 years later, my passion has never been stronger. He may have had some rough patches in recent times, but I've never forgotten the joy he's given me.
For my final anniversary celebration feature, I partnered up with LBD "Nytetrayn" of The Mega Man Network for a massive list of 25 "mega" moments in Mega Man history. Such a large undertaking couldn't possibly fit in a single article, thus we've split the duties between ourselves and each posted a portion of the list. Below you'll find a set of 12, while over on TMMN you'll find a set of 13.
If it wasn't obvious from the many musical references throughout the series, the Mega Man games are as much about excellent tunes as they are about tried-and-true action gameplay. He's not called "Rockman" for nothing!
But despite the ocean of quality jams spanning two and a half decades, people tend to only talk about the soundtracks of the more popular games, especially Mega Man 2. Do we seriously need another "Dr. Wily Stage 1" from Mega Man 2 arrangement? C'mon, guys! Expand your horizons!
With that in mind, the erudite Jayson Napolitano and I put our heads together to compile a list of ten awesome tracks from ten games that aren't Mega Man 2. Or Mega Man 3. Or even the first Mega Man X. Instead of a definitive "best of" list, we would like to offer up our choices as a primer to the expanded wold of Mega Man music.
It's the most wonderful time of the year! And I truly believe that. While Thanksgiving is easily my favorite holiday, Christmas is a close second, and I've always made an iPod playlist with tons of holiday music that I roll out the day after Thanksgiving.
Recently, I had people ask me what kind of music I put on my Christmas playlist, and I realized I had a lot of game tracks! So what better way to kick off the Christmas season than with ten of my favorite holiday themes from videogames!
As usual, we can't include everything in a short top ten list, so feel free to chime in with some of your favorites as well, and together we'll hopefully have a pretty sizable list of music to enjoy this Christmas season!
Today, Nintendo launches the first next-gen system or last current-gen system, depending how you look at it. Things always appear different in retrospect, which is perfectly illustrated in these bizarre, ancient clips of Nintendo's past system launches. There is something about a Nintendo home console launch that makes fans go crazy and the media go even crazier, as a result.
This Halloween, you might feel like turning down the lights and cranking up the frights with a run through of a classic game like Resident Evil or Silent Hill. But for my time and money, nothing beats the premier name in action horror -- Castlevania!
Castlevania may not be the first thing you think of when someone says "horror," but there really is no greater poster child for the genre. This is a series that originally drew inspiration from old Universal and Hammer monster movies, paying homage to icons like Frankenstein's Creature, the Wolf Man, and of course Dracula. Over the years, it started to incorporate monsters and myths from cultures the world over. Castlevania is really just one giant hoedown with nearly every ghoul and foul hellspawn from all of human history.
And what better way is there to celebrate such a remarkable franchise than with a totally objective list of the best Castlevania songs of all time? From gothic jazz to vampire rock, each tune is distinct and memorable in its own way. I guarantee that, by the time you finish reading this list, you'll feel like a badass, whip-cracking, axe-throwing, superhuman hunter of the night!
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Sam & Max series. It was 1987 when the very first Sam & Max comic was released, inspiring one of the greatest and most charming adventure game series ever.
Everyone is celebrating this exciting milestone! Telltale is celebrating with a major Steam sale on Sam & Max games this weekend! Original creator Steve Purcell is celebrating by continually being awesome! And now it’s time for Destructoid to join in the celebration. And what better way to celebrate the greatness of Sam & Max than with a themed top ten list?! THEMED TOP TEN LISTS ARE THE GREATEST GIFTS OF ALL!
Since Sam and Max are some of the most memorable detectives ever, there is no more logical choice than a list of the ten best videogame detectives of all time.
Enjoy this fine gift, Sam and Max. And, no, I don’t have the receipt.
The PlayStation Vita has been out for a little over half a year now, and it really is a nifty system. With its touch controls and twin-stick interface, the versatility of the system and its ability to provide unique, compelling experiences is unparalleled in the handheld market. With all that variety, you may be stuck wondering -- what should I get?
There's never been a better time to get on the Vita train, so hop aboard. I'll be your conductor for this trip, as we pull into Fun Station. There are ten scheduled stops as we drag out this train metaphor, each one representing a vital PS Vita title. You want to know what the best ten games on your Vita are? Look no further, friend!
If you're anything like me, you're a devil worshipper.
There's just something glorious about a truly demonic demon, one that embodies the spirit of the classics -- a big, red, horny, behooved, gleefully evil beast-man from the flaming depths of Hell. Who doesn't love demons? Well, Christians, I suppose. Some of them, anyway.
Videogames have all sorts of demons, but only a few of them are proper demony demons. The kind of demon you can look at and say, "That sure is a demon!" These are the demons that you think of when you think of demon stuff, which I do pretty much all of the time.
[Destructoid is grabbing its rail gun and heading to Dallas, Texas this weekend for QuakeCon. Stay posted for game news, previews, and strange happenings from the infamous LAN room.]
One of my favorite things to do at QuakeCon is stumble across the labyrinth of cables, PCs, and people contained within the BYOC (Bring Your Own Computer) room, searching for the most noteworthy, custom rigs.
Even with the room at max capacity, turning away an unprecedented amount of people in the event’s history, I was disappointed to find a lot less interesting rigs this year. Some of this is due to seeing returning ones from last year’s list (Minecraft Station, Neon Rig). Regardless, the ones that did make this list really impressed me.
I have a very loud laugh. Some people say it is infectious, but I have been paranoid about it my entire life. When I am sitting in a movie theater, sometimes I laugh so hard that people think something is wrong with me. I even had an old lady move to a new seat in March of the Penguins because, I can only assume, she was annoyed by my loud guffawing. What? The baby penguins were hilarious! I’M SORRY FOR BEING TICKLED BY THE WONDERS OF NATURE, OLD LADY!
But a person’s laugh is a part of who they are, so I guess I have to embrace it.
Lucky for me, my laugh is not nearly as extreme as some of the videogame characters on this list. Their laughs range from the ridiculous to the confounding to the just plain terrifying.
I find some comfort in knowing that my laugh is at least not terrifying.