Well, I'm finally getting around to part 2. For my destructoid readers, it's only been a couple of days since I posted the original blog, but for my 1-up readers? It's been about 2 months. I did start to write this ages ago, but I kept changing my mind about what my top 10 games actually were. But now I've narrowed it down, and picked a definitive list of games I know will stay in here for quite some time. Also, I'm finally bored enough to actually write this fucker. Also, since some of these descriptions were getting quite long I decided to split the blog up again, just to make reading easier for you lazy cockbites. So without further ado, I bring to you MARSHAL!!!!!! Ok... If you read on I promise to never make an Eminem reference ever again...
10: Batman: Arkham Asylum: Before I start, yes this picture is from the Grant Morrison/Dave McKean masterpiece, but it's certainly a hell of a lot better than the dross that passed for the game's cover. Hell, I'd prefer a picture of a pair of shemale testicles over the crap they put on there. I almost didn't buy the game because it looked like shit. I thought, great, another in the long line of games that won't serve justice to my second favourite fictional character (First being Jesus), and will probably tarnish his name even further. Even better, they're using my favourite of his comics, and there is no way a mainstream video game could do it justice, unless it was designed by the team behind Silent Hill 3. Oh how wrong I was.
The team chose wisely to have Arkham Asylum become just a setting, and have little connection to the tone of the comic. There are still horror elements in the game, and even psychological aspects, but this is an entirely beast, and that's not a bad thing. While I would have liked more doubt in Batman's sanity, his wondering whether walking into Arkham Asylum "would feel like home," I was genuinely impressed with the overall feel of the game. Arkham Asylum felt right as a setting. The villains were well characterised and the voice acting was phenomenal. They got the atmosphere, the look, and sound of Batman right, however it would all be worth nothing if the gameplay wasn't up to scratch.
Well, the game got that right also, and for the first time in a batman game, you used a mix of stealth, combat, and detective deduction to make your way through the game, and each single element of that mix was satisfying in itself. The stealth made your heart race as you eliminated each character one by one, inducing fear into the remaining ones as they witnessed their victims fall. The combat was visceral and brutal without the need for gore. The puzzles tested your mind without being too hard. This was a true batman game, and I'm going erect just thinking about it.
9. Tony Hawks Pro Skater 2: The Playstation and nintendo 64 were the first consoles I owned. My uncle owned the sega mega drive, and my mum owned the snes. So a playstation was like a birthday present. The first games I remember playing on it were Abe's Exoddus, Resident Evil, and this. Since I was 8 (My uncle used the console more than me, hence why I had all these games I probably shouldn't have) Abe's fart jokes appealed to me, but the puzzles didn't, and while I was a fan of horror even at that young age (thank you R.L. Stine) Resident evil was far too serious and hard for me to play. So this was the game for me.
This game is so high up because not only was it a great game, but it also shaped my early teen life. The music I heard shaped my music tastes, causing me to get into bands such as Papa Roach, Rage Against the Machine, and Millencolin. That in turn had a profound effect on my music tastes now, because Papa Roach and RATM led me into Nu metal, post grunge, and hip hop; which then led Progressive rock and metal (thank you tool), which then lead to all types of metal, which lead me to get into a certain band called maudlin of the well that made me a fan of everytype of music. Also, the Pixies fit somewhere in there. They're important too.
This game didn't just shape my music tastes though, It shaped my early teen personality. I started to actually skate (until I injured my back) and fit in with the outcasts, who tried their hardest not to be mainstream. My clothes were Element and Girl (the brand, not feminine clothing) Merch, and yeah, I just kind of sunk into a skater/punk clique. Then I changed dramatically, obviously, but that's another story. It's amazing how much a game can change your life though, hey?
Anyway, not only did this game change my life dramatically, it also was just a great game. It felt great to combo, and was easy to pick up, hard to master. But most of all, it was just fun.
8. Oddworld: Abe's Exoddus: This 2d platforming gem was originally introduced to me when I was 8. My grandmother adored the puzzles and platforming (my grandmother is quite young, only 35 years older than me (she was 19 when she had mum (mum was 16 when she had me (omg there are too many brackets)))), but I originally fell in love with the game because of the farts. The fact that you could fart in the game was amusing to my 8 year old mind. The fact that you could possess your farts and use them to explode enemies was fucking amazing. Seriously, how many games let you do that? Now I find that sort of humour a bit on the nose (see what I did there?), however I still replay this game every so often. Why? The same reason as my grand mother.
See, this game is one of the most brain numbing games I've played, and the fact that the game is all about communication over violence makes it better. In a medium where you're constantly put in the shoes of a mass murdering fuckwit, it was nice to play as someone who used violence as a last resort. I mean you could murder everyone in your wake, but that defeated much of the challenge and purpose of the game. You were a saviour, not a savage.
Then there's the sheer amount of variety in the game. You could possess enemies with guns to murder other enemies with guns, you entered a rollcage car thing, you defused mines, ran away from wildlife, summoned spirits, possessed farts, solved logic puzzles with the aid of your fellow Mudokkons, participated in stealth sequences, and navigated tricky platforming sections. And I haven't even mentioned the quirky motherfuckers that inhabited the world. It was, and still is a truly unique game, and nothing quite compares to it. You should play this game!
7. Jak II: Renegade: I seem to be the only person who remembers when Naughty Dog made games, not shitty Indiana Jones fan fiction with terrible gunplay and god awful platforming and managing to get 10's across the board just by being incredibly polished. Oh... it's a platform exclusive... that explains it then. The Uncharted series dumbfounded me, because the Jak and Daxter series nailed both platforming and while not having amazing at gunplay, were still better than the dross in Uncharted. Anyway, we're here to talk about good games, so I'll stop talking about Uncharted. If you want to hear more about it, look over to my Top 10 Most Overrated Games blog, or read Joss Whedon's 10 year old Indiana Jones fan fiction.
Anyway, this game is brilliant, and along with Ratchet and Clank, showed that mascot platformers could be for adults as well as children. The game took the amazing platforming and seamless, no loading screen world, and made it into an open world, with guns and car jacking. They turned it into a dark disney version of Grand Theft Auto, and it was phenomenal. The Scifi world had hover cars, hover boards, and some of the best platforming in the business. The humour is mostly intelligent and the characters were incredibly quirky.
I've finished this game about 6 times, especially since it was a version of GTA I could play at dads, and more than that, it was actually good, it felt unique even if it did take a lot from Ratchet and Clank, and it leads me to ask one question: Why is Nintendo the only ones who do Mascot Platformers now?
Put simply: Fuck Mario. Fuck Kirby. Fuck any 3D platformer ever released because Jak 2 had them beat. Naughty Dog, go back to doing what you do best, and leave the bland, unimaginative shooters to Epic and Bungie.
Portal 2: Wow. Last year was an amazing year for games. This is the second game released last year to be included in my top 20, and there's one more coming. Also, the day Valve release a bad game will be a sad day for all.
See, the Portal games would be amazing just for their mindbending puzzles and phenomenal physics. The dark humour is just the icing on the... donut? Ah, now I remember why I can't play the first game anymore. YOU BASTARDS RUINED IT!!! If I hear one more of you anal bunny raping cum guzzlers say the words cake in the sames sentence as the word lie... well lets just say your testicals will put into a blender and you will be forced to drink it. Seriously, I have the same problem with the Monty Python films. Things are funnier the less you hear of them, and references aren't clever if they aren't part of a homage or parody, you're just stealing other peoples jokes, you talentless, kiddy fiddling cunts!
Ok, rant over. This is the main reason I prefer the second game over the perfect first game. It hasn't been ruined. The second game's humour is broader, but that doesn't make it any more intelligent. It still has that brilliantly dark humour, and now with the addition of wheatley, it has a farcical, more straightforward humour that is still brilliant in it's own right. The puzzles? Well, they aren't as good as the original, which I suppose will happen if you're trying to reach out to a wider audience. The Co-op section's puzzles are phenomenal, but I don't like co-op in puzzle games. It defeats the purpose. I want to figure shit out on my own, not have some more intelligent prick, or someone who's played it before solve them for me! Thank god for the dowloadable puzzles though. Regardless of the puzzling difficulty, however, we just don't get many games that are genuinely funny, or even remotely intelligent. It's also a point in the favour of non-violent video games. Not all AAA games need to be extraordinarily violent, and this game proves it.
There. That's part 2. Tune in whenever I can be bothered to make the next one. Now go do something productive. Ah, who am I kidding. You're on a gaming website. You don't know the meaning of the word, do you? read