Happy New Years everyone! Hope you had a fun and safe time. I spent my last few hours of 2012 playing Card Against Humanity and confirming that I am indeed an awful person. So we can look forward to more of the same in 2013!
I went through this whole weird arc of being super enthused about Far Cry 3
, losing interest after its disastrous E3 demo, not giving a shit for a long time, then remembering why I cared in the first place in the weeks after its release. When some reviewers and friends I count on for sage advice started singing its praises of emergent gameplay and absolute pandemonium all I heard was "yo, you
should get this game."
You have to go "all in" to really enjoy Far Cry 3
. Don't worry about dying, or wrecking a car, or doing a mission "wrong" – the only thing that matters is HOW FUCKING INSANE everything is. And I don't mean the cheesy allusions to Alice in Wonderland
or the super intense marketing blitz, or any of that crap. I'm talking about a Komodo Dragon chomping on your leg just as you were about to attack an outpost, causing you to panic toss a Molotov cocktail, set the entire field on fire, accidentally killing everyone in the shanty-fort. I'm talking about man-hunting through the jungle like you were Katnis Everdeen with a deadly silent bow and a backpack full of landmines. I'm talkin' bout stabbing a dude, ripping the pin out of a grenade on his belt and kicking him into his buddy for an explosive hug. The game is wonderful. You do things, more things happen, everything ends up on fire. It's the game you always wanted.
You can waste a lot of time just wandering around and getting into trouble without ever touching the actual story missions. Which might be a good call, because when you do the story missions you have to see the story
. An awkward try-hard plot with some seriously creepy "White man's burden" overtones. I'm not sure if it was tone-deafness that led to the game's plot, some kind of attempt an a tongue-in-cheek self-awareness that misfired, just plain racism or what. I'm not the first person to say it, but I feel like this is a game that was trying for parody and somehow missed it, coming to rest on cliche and uncomfortable.
- "Privileged white doofus becomes serial murderer when separated by his friends during a tropical vacation." That is my basic mental framing for the game.
As far as pure gaming goes, Far Cry 3
is one of the best experiences I've had all year. 2012 was an odd year in gaming for me. I spent far more time with odd indy titles like FTL
, Hotline Miami
and (less indy, just odd) Mechwarrior
than I did with any big budget games. Most of the "major" releases this year were either ones I wasn't interested in or disappointments. The major title I spent the most time on was Dark Souls
for the PC for goodness sake! So Far Cry
is kind of a nice surprise at the end of the year. A big flashy technically polished violence-fest of the variety I spent the whole year avoiding – and I couldn't be having more fun with it.
I also picked up Don't Starve
for my and my girlfriend on some douchebag's advice
and its... its something! I played exactly 5 minutes and realized that I might need to read an instruction manual or something before going any further. Loving the Tim Burton-esq art and goofy sense of humour.
Hey, did everyone read the recap year end special
? You really should!
* - Boooooobs.
* - Did 2012 mark the return of the oldschool ways? Are difficult games making a resurgence? Ask Marche100.
* - Wheel of morality turn turn turn, tell us the best fucking reference you can make! Topsauced on the basis of my everlasting love for Animaniacs.
* - Wealth and prosperity goes to the patient and wise. Instead of spending $60 on a brand new game, why not spend that money on three or so classics you missed from the last year or so?
A - Jorbams gets his snarky pants on and lets those highfalutin, ivory tower game jornos and their precious Walking Dead have it. Yay?
P - Get those Taco Tuesdays while they're hot!
A - It's an old point, but yes, console wars are stupid and being dark&edgy isn't the same as being mature.
C - Hamza wants to see us playing F2P games each night of the week! I hereby nominate myself as king in charge of all stompy robots.
T - A lovely top ten list from Kyle MacGregor. This was the year of oddball games and surprises.
T - If there is one thing we can take away from ConnorTheScots top 3 list it's that he loves stabbing fools with pointy objects. Word.
T - More top lists, more great picks! If Spec Ops and Mark of the Ninja are anything to go by, we can wager DaviesAntony loves corpses hanging off lampposts.
T - Crackbat's list suggests he subsists on a diet of Deku nuts. Also, it is the only list where Kid Icarus is winning ANYTHING.
T - Jonathan Holmes (begrudgingly?) gives us his top ten of the year! Big ups to Spelunky. Also, apparently Julia Starling is Holmes' spirit guide. I can dig it.
T - Allistair knocks it out of the park with his professional list! What deep meaning does it reveal about him? He likes some good damn games.
T - By the looks of this list, Randombullsesye has a steam account and he ain't afraid to use it! Hotline Miami and FTL were some of my favs this year too.
T - Brevity is the soul of lists! Brett Zeidler gets it done quick and dirty like a horse-masked murder junkie.
T - Our friend Chris Carter gets in on the list action. A lovely human being, he didn't want to leave any game out so his honourable mentions list is as long as your sleeve.
A - Do you like pixel art? Damn straight you do.
R - Solar20XX feels bad for not saying Happy New Year to us. S'okay, we know you DON'T LOVE US.
R - Kris builds a computer! It's still expensive! Shit.
C - Some "joke" predictions for 2012.
R - Ccearano has some New Years resolution feels for us all.
R - Stealth has some gameranking thing to check out. Not sure what it's about to be honest.