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Old 09-23-2013, 01:02 PM   #1
Pedro
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Best Games of this Generation

As mentioned by Abfackeln and JLB1987 previously, perhaps it would be fun to have a leisurely discussion as to what the best games of this slowly-dying generation are.

Also, we should vote on the GameCritics Forum Best Game of this Generation!

I'm thinking it could work like this:

Mention a game in this thread which you think is a contender for the title. Say something about it, one sentence or as many as you want, and then give it a mark out of 10. It doesn't need to be a review score, just a mark out of 10. If you feel a game is important, and should have a presence on the list despite it not being very good, for example, you could give it a 4. You can nominate any number of games.

We'll tally up all the scores, and crown a 'winner' at the end.

So even if you give something a 1, it'll be on the list at the end, it won't disappear. Games that receive multiple 7-10s will be at the head of the list, even though we feel that they shouldn't be there.

It may spark some discussion (feel free to agree, disagree, score other people's games etc), and we may be encouraged to play a game we haven't played.

A definition of 'this generation' is anything on console or pc from whenever this generation started - 2005 or so? We'll not split hairs. You can also go back later and change your scores, though try not to do that via tactical voting just to prevent GTA IV from scooping the award, for example.
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Old 09-23-2013, 01:02 PM   #2
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

Reserved for tallying up Teh Winners!

The Scores So Far are:

Mass Effect .......................27.5
Demon's Souls ..................20.5
Skyrim ................................20
Portal................................20
Dark Souls ........................19.5
Mount & Blade ...................19.5
StarCraft II .......................18.5
Red Dead Redemption ..........18
Gone Home.........................10
Super Meat Boy....................10
XCOM - Enemy Within ..........10
Super Mario Galaxy I.............10
Frozen Synapse ...................10
Spec Ops: The Line ..............10
Team Fortress 2....................10
Trackmania ..........................10
Vanquish .............................10
Dragon's Dogma ..................10
ClickR...................................10
Civilisation 4 ........................10
Super Mario Galaxy II.............10
Diablo III...............................9
Hotline Miami..........................9
Far Cry 2 ..............................9
Virtue's Last Reward..............9
Fallout New Vegas .................9
Bayonetta.............................9
Grand Theft Auto IV ..............8
Stalker..................................8
Deadly Premonition.................8
Crysis (Warhead)...................7
Fallout 3 ...............................7
Dead Nation...........................7
Waves ..................................7
Batman: Arkham Asylum.........6
The Path..............................5
To The Moon.........................5
Cut the Rope........................3
Burn the Rope........................2
Puddle...................................1
Kane & Lynch: Dead Men.........1
Brütal Legend.........................1
Limbo....................................1
Amnesia.................................1
Wipeout HD............................1
GT5.......................................1
Retro/Grade...........................1
Mirror's Edge...........................1
Condemned: Criminal Origins.......1





Mass Effect still in the lead...being cut back a little by the Souls..

Nintendo is represented at last, and 'most eclectic' goes to Crackajack, wresting the crown from Li-Ion.

It's interesting to me that we now have a bunch of 10s, which means one person has voted for those games wholeheartedly, but no one else is backing them by giving them another vote. Most curious in that category are perhaps the Mario Galaxy games, but there is time for them to receive more votes!

Last edited by Pedro; 12-27-2013 at 02:01 PM.
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Old 09-23-2013, 01:08 PM   #3
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

I'll kick it off.

I don't want to start on an acrimonious note, but I'm gonna nominate Far Cry 2 as my first game. I thought it was great, and I'd love to see more from designer Clint Hocking. What are the chances he's working on HL3 at Valve?

I loved this, mainly for the 'immersion'. The intro cutscene, a seamless journey from the airport into the heart of darkness, was just lovely. I loved it when you pulled up your map, or ripped a bullet out of your thigh with a pair of pliers. I liked the horrible bastards who were your buddies, and I liked the freedom to approach missions as you saw fit. The driving and boating was fantastic. The shooting was solid, and that little bastard in the boat with the mortar was infuriating.

I'm giving it a 9.

What about you folks, got a game to share?
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:14 AM   #4
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

Easy one for me, Red Dead Redemption. I thought it was just about perfect right from the start- the gameplay was drastically improved over GTAIV, it got the Wild West feeling down perfectly, and the characters were some of the best, if not *the* best, I've ever had the pleasure of hanging out with in a videogame. Then I got Xbox Gold, and the fun has continued for months in the almost-perfect multiplayer. The fact that most players are bastards just enhances the wild west feeling.

All my most recent best gaming memories are from this game- whether it's the ending of the single player campaign, Nigel West-Dickens, the pleasent surprise that was Undead Nightmare. Playing multi-player with my friend who has me in fits of laughter because he does stuff like nick my horse or run me over with his horse. One particularly memorable moment occured on multi-player... I was online, completeing gang hideouts, when I came across another player doing the same thing. Normally, people will automatically start shooting at you, but I rarely shoot first, so again, gave this guy the benefit of the doubt. Without speaking, we completed the hideout working together, then I headed to the next one. This guy decided to ride with me, and we carried on playing and working together to eliminate various NPC baddies. In an online world where people will do their best to troll you, it was a genuinely fun, lovely few moments.

I can't think of any games that come anywhere near as close as RDR for me, so that's the only one I'm mentioning. 10/10.

Edit: I guess GTAIV should get an honourable mention, specifically, The Lost and Damned. It's the only game with an ending that came anywhere near as close to making me feel how I did about RDR, and is a prime example of how DLC should be done. 8/10
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Last edited by JLB1987; 09-24-2013 at 02:17 AM.
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Old 09-25-2013, 12:49 PM   #5
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

You're only nominating 1.5 games!?

Fallout 3 called, it wants its Alien Blaster back.


I'm wholeheartedly behind you with RDR. When I played it first I agreed with the people who said it was a bit Grand Theft Pony. However, with time, and a replay of the game, I've become hugely impressed by it. I think I may have said before that I think it is the absolute pinnacle of the Cinematic Action Game.

The acting was superb, the main characters sympathetic, the story excellent, the whole mood of the game segued perfectly with the passing of the West. Stunning scenery, a fantastic world, just great.

8/10 from me.
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Old 09-29-2013, 12:42 AM   #6
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

My list is going to be topped with open world style games. What can I say? I love games that allow me to explore the world, without having to follow set paths at every step.

Skyrim: I can't recall any other game that I've put this much time into. I've put well over 240 hours into the game and plan on going back to complete the Daedric artifacts collecting that I'd missed on the complete playthrough. 10/10

Fallout: New Vegas: I really enjoyed playing Fallout 3 on the 360. It had this huge world that I could explore and the character interaction was beyond great. My only issue with that game was being forced to travel between all of the subway tunnels. New Vegas felt more open, with how you could travel between regions. 9/10

Mass Effect: I really loved playing Mass Effect on the 360. This title, along with Bioshock, were the reasons why I had bought a 360, even though I had already owned a PS3. I had completed the 1st title years ago, and actually started a second playthrough on the console. I never did finish that second playthough, but did finish a second play of the game when I'd bought the ME trilogy on the PS3. I'm seriously thinking about getting the trilogy on the PC. 8.5/10

StarCraft II: I really loved playing through the first game on the PC. StarCraft II was an instant purchase for my PC, when it was released. I really love RTS games, and this franchise is at the top, as far as I'm concerned. 8.5/10
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Old 10-01-2013, 12:43 PM   #7
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

That's a pretty good list. I'm reluctant to back Skyrim and New Vegas for now, but maybe later. Skyrim was wonderful for me for 50 hours, and I feel bad that I then slate it for the following fifteen or so I played!

New Vegas was inferior to Fallout 3 for me - I have a feeling that it was just because I was getting a bit fed up with those games as it was clearly the better game in lots of aspects.

I may come in with a vote for Fallout 3 after a while, still mulling it over.
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Old 10-02-2013, 05:12 PM   #8
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

StarCraft 2 took my favorite game from the past and made it even better. The esports scene that developed around it has been a lot of fun to follow as well.

Mass Effect has the best story and characters I've seen in a game. I've also never played an RPG in which choice matters more than in mass Effect. The choices I made continued to shape the story hundreds of hours after I made them, and the scenes they helped shape continued to play out perfectly time and time again.

Skyrim has the most fun world to explore. It's somehow both vast and incredibly detailed. I'm 200 hours into it, and there's still no end in sight.

Did Portal come out this generation. That game felt like an instant breath of fresh air. It had a completely innovative gameplay mechanic that it implemented perfectly, and even managed to tell a concise and funny story along the way.

And, uh, 10s all around I guess. Why not? I could talk for hours about design decisions that don't quite work in StarCraft 2, but its still my favorite game. Numerical scores are silly.
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Old 10-03-2013, 08:09 AM   #9
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

Demon's Souls/Dark Souls - I'm not sure how much needs to be said about them that hasn't been said already? No other game invoked this sense of exploration for me the same way the Souls-series does. Starting out you quickly notice that everything follows an internal consistent logic, which just happens to be unfamiliar to the player. With every death and every slain foe you learn more about the place, the mechanics and the monsters you just slain. At some point you realize the real monster might be you. The fact that it doesn't explain itself lead to one of the most interesting subcultures in gaming, sharing their stories, triumphs and defeats. The novel way it incorporates multiplayer caused quite some ripples among gamers and game developers as well.

Frozen Synapse
Turn based tactics have rarely been so gripping. Very minimalistic graphics style that enables to focus on what's important: your guys, your guns, their guys, their guns. There is no luck involved, everything is determined by position, speed, cover and weapon type used. Games between two experienced players look like very deadly ballet.

Spec Ops: the Line The thinking man's shooter and anti-war-wargame. The modern military shooter to end all modern military shooters. Since playing SOTL I haven't picked up any other modern military shooters. I just find them silly.
SOTL follows Captain Walker into Dubai, to find out what happened to the US soldiers who were stationed there. What happens then can be described as Heart of Darkness meets No Exit. "Do you feel like a hero yet?"
Also, cool soundtrack.

Vanquish
The best 3rd person shooter this generation. It takes the slow, methodical cover-platforming from chest-high-wall to chest-high-wall and infuses it with a supercharged power armor that completely changes the way this 3rd person shooter works. Blasting past Russian killer robots, shooting down a hail of missiles in slow motion, taking down giant mecha... things that a generation ago could only be done in cutscenes are fully playable.

Dragon's Dogma
Speaking of things that could only be done in cutscenes: Dragon's Dogma was another Japanese action-rpg that put it's own spin on multiplayer. One could outfit and level not only the player character, but also a friendly NPC (pawn) and use other players' pawns to track down and kill monsters or just explore the lands. Classes were not fixed, a nimble archer could easily switch profession to become a mighty warrior wielding a giant two handed sword. DD is the best when all the little pieces come together. Running on top of a cliff to jump onto a griffin passing by, clinging onto it's wings and climbing onto it's back to find a vulnerable spot without being thrown off. Just when the time is right a hired pawn casts a spell to enchant the main weapon and the griffin catches fire, tumbling towards earth. Jumping off and rolling around to see how the other pawns close in to help finishing the beast off.

(is Mount & Blade "this Gen", being pure pc game and all and I don't actually know when the original came out...)

And I agree with what is said above, for these games putting numbers on them feels a bit silly. Consider them all "10" otherwise I wouldn't mention them in the thread named best this gen
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Old 10-05-2013, 01:45 AM   #10
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

I've heard a lot of great comments about Vanquish. It's a title that I've had high on my list, but have never purchased. I need to get that game soon.
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Old 10-05-2013, 03:00 AM   #11
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

Very surprised to see Dragon's Dogma on there. It was good, and it was a really fresh take on the RPG, and the pawn system was just inspired. But....

Part of my prejudice may be that I got to the Dragon Boss (the first one) and after a full hour, I only had his health down by one third. Traded it the next day. Got it free on PS+ this month so maybe I will revisit it sometime.

Agreed:

Demon's Souls 9.5
Dark Souls 9.5


Mount and Blade is definitely this generation, and is one of the loves of my life. What a mix of strategy, role playing, and first person combat! Incredible. Everybody should play this game to see what it is about. It is absolutely epic in every sense of the word. Do you remember reading about the Siege of Minas Tirith in LotR? This game makes you feel like that.

Mount & Blade 9.5
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Old 10-07-2013, 05:06 AM   #12
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

It looks like Civilization 4 may barely make the cutoff too. It's hard to tell with PC games. The expansion packs were definitely released this generation, even if the original game was a month early.

I woke up around 10:00 AM one Saturday morning back in college. I walked to the local bakery, ate a late breakfast, and then headed to the local entertainment store to buy a new copy of Civ 4. I got back to my dorm around noon, installed my new game, and started playing. I finally looked up from the game when I started getting hungry again, and noticed that it was beginning to get dark. I paused the game and hurried to the university's cafeteria to get dinner. When I got there, however, I discovered the door was locked. Moreover, the entire campus seemed deserted. It slowly dawned on me that it was not just beginning to get dark, but that it was in fact just beginning to get light. I had played through the night without realizing it.

Civilization 4 is the most dangerous game in a very dangerous series.

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Old 10-07-2013, 11:27 AM   #13
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

Then I definitely nominate Mount & Blade for one of the defining games of this generation! My love-hate-love-affair with Mount & Blade is well documented on the forums, where the story of my peasant woman turned mercenary turned gladiator turned general turned ruler of her own kingdom can be read. This is definitely one game of a scale that couldn't really be done before. Even the base game allows massive medieval battles, in the vein of the Total War-Series and with mods and a powerful enough pc one can truly fight battles worthy of legends. Achieving victory in a siege with hundreds of warriors on both sides is amazing and to suddenly be in power of a kingdom with a simple but engaging web of politics involved completely changes the game halfway through. Many RPG like Dragon Age try to deliver an 'epic' campaign where player choice matters, but none delivers the same way Mount & Blade does with its systems of simulated medieval countries (or Poland, in case of Fire & Sword). It goes from being a lonely adventurer to being a general to commanding entire armies in a believable fashion. Including sometimes not having a clue where the own armies are roaming around since the Lords can have their own agenda. There is only one game I'm more excited about than about Mount & Blade 2, and that is Dark Souls 2. I haven't even started talking about Fire & Sword, that adds muskets that completely change the game and the absolutely hilarious Napoleonic Wars DLC. The multiplayer expansion without respawn (one life per match, just like in real life (or counterstrike)) but with playable music instruments, hundreds of players on each side locked in deadly musket and cavalry warfare. It is unlike any other multiplayer shooter when your best firearm is a single-shot musket that takes 5 to 10 seconds to reload every time... no spray & pray in this game.

Honourable mention to the Mass Effect Trilogy, which has it's share of problems and could really do with a streamlined remake (especially ME1 is painful to play these days), but tells a nice space opera, including naughty sexy aliens and not so sexy aliens. It could do with a bit less 'ancient prophecy' shenanigans, since we played that already on KOTOR, but good effort all around nevertheless. That would perhaps not get a perfect 10 from me, more like a 8 or 9...

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Old 10-10-2013, 02:01 AM   #14
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

Guys, I hate to be obvious, but GTA V is slowly becoming a contender for me. If something makes me laugh, then I automatically love it (see Red Dead), and V doesn't disappoint in this regard. I'm very hesitant, however- one thing I don't like about the GTA games is how signposted they are. Let me be creative, Rockstar! I can't score this right now, but suffice to say, I'm loving it

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Old 10-12-2013, 06:08 AM   #15
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Re: Best Games of this Generation

I dunno about GTAV - the new-game-hype effect makes it a suspicious entry here. Will it survive the test of time?

It's interesting that we've gone mostly triple-A so far with a couple of exceptions. Has the much-hyped indie game scene been a bust? Do we still reserve the best-of-the-best labels for triple-A?

It's good to see the strategy games like Starcraft and Civ putting in a strong showing.
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