Wednesday, 31 December 2008

New Year's Eve + Misc. Game Awards

The end of another fine year. Overall, I'd say it was a pretty good year. A pretty good year for videogames too, for the most part. Hence, the following.

Best PS3 Game That Was Not A Sequel To Anything Else/Best Game No One Played
... So I guess that rules out most games. Anyway, Valkyria Chronicles. It was my Christmas present so I've only played it for like seven hours so it might get awful towards the end. I doubt it. It's very, very cool. It's basically turn-based-third-person-tactical-wartime-shooter. Which is very, very cool. The strategy portions make you feel like you are a big, tough general with your little rake that you use to push minature versions of all your units around, but the third-person-tactical-wartime-shooter part makes you feel like you are really there and that you are going to get shot in the face. Which I do on a regular basis. And then I feel guilty when a unit goes critical, but it's not like Fire Emblem where your shit is fucked up permanently if your HP is reduced to zero. On the topic of feeling guilty, onto the next category.

Best Game That Made Me Incredibly Guilty
Ah yes, I wanted to play Pikmin since the Gamecube first came out. I got mine on launch day along with Super Smash Bros. Melee. That was a good day. But they didn't have Pikmin, so maybe I got something in addition to Melee? Anyway. I borrowed it from good ol' Doctor J (and found out two days later that they were doing a remake on the Wii BUT THIS TIME WITH WAGGLE!).
Anyway. The Pikmin themselves are very fucking adorable. So adorable that whenever I hurl half my squad onto an enemy and watch as they take it down, I smile. But wait! The enemy's retaliating! Oh what the fuck, it's killed like four of them. At this point (in real life), I start yelling that I WILL KILL THAT FUCKER NO MATTER WHAT BECAUSE YOU KILLED MY PIKMIN. I defeat it. My remaining Pikmin hurl the monster's corpse back to my base, where it will be turned into seeds so that more Pikmin can sprout.
But the sense of guilt lingers. However, guilt does not equate to just feeling plain terrible. Thus, the next category.

Best Game That Turned Me Into An Emotional Wreck/Best Two-Year-Old-Game-That-Most-Of-Us-Played-This-Year
Mother 3 is sweet, quirky and one of the most charming games I've ever played. That being said, Mother 3 is probably also the most depressing game I have ever played.By halfway, it's pretty obvious how it's all going to end, but the way it was executed is amazing. You get the feeling that you could've done something to prevent the ending from happening but of course you can't, it's a game. But then the final scene comes in and like reality punching you in the face, reminds you that you were involved. You were as much a part of their world as all the characters were.
Of course, the whole 'Two Year' thing comes into play because the marvelous translation project was completed this year, which I made a big deal about when it happened. Speaking of big deals...

BIG DEALS PART ONE: Fuck Yes You Are The Cheapest Game Ever
Guess how much I bought Folklore at K-Mart for? Three-dollars-fucking-fifty-cents. I jest not. The box said $20 (a wonderful bargain for a PS3 game anyway) but when I took it up to the counter, it was $3.50. Holy shit.

BIG DEALS PART TWO: That One Game That I Would Not Shut Up About
Hey guys, remember when No More Heroes was first announced? And I jumped up and down and shouted 'OH HELL YES, HEROES IS GOING TO BE TOTALLY EXCELLENT.' From that day on, I marked NMH related stuff in my diary (like when the website was going to open), read all the interviews with Suda51, looked at the concept art and wailed like a little bitch when it was delayed. And then of course, NMH 2 was announced. I do believe the cycle will repeat itself. All this being said, I'm not really sure if I can give NMH 'Wii Game of The Year'. I'm tempted to give it to. Or I could just make a separate category.

Wii Game of The Year That Is Neither No More Heroes Or Brawl

Disaster: Day of Crisis is it. The whole thing is a massive parody of pretty much every single action movie ever. You do pretty much everything in this game. You run and jump and rescue people by lifting rubble off them or by cleaning their wounds, you go through some nifty arcade shooting action and you drive your car around by tilting your Wiimote this way and that. (The driving stages were not good at all, but everything else was enjoyable and well-done so I'm willing to overlook it.) This game also gets bonus awesome points because when it was announced I was pretty 50/50 on whether it would be a decent game. I'm glad it was good. The Wii needs more good games. 2009 should be a good year though. Next one's related, because of one thing...

BONUS: Most Attractive Character
Dammit, Ray. Dammit.

Best Worst Game of The Year
You know, I love rhythm games. I especially love Ouendan/Elite Beat Agents, because it's just quirky. So what do you get when you combine Ouendan/EBA and turn it into what is pretty much a dating sim? Well, you get Princess Debut which is about your character who is transported into an alternate dimension where she is a princess and has to find a dance partner for the upcoming ball. Awww. The dancing is actually the dullest part of the whole game as you are forced to grind one song about three times a day for five days before you get another. Not cool at all. There's no challenge, and it's not HARDCORE DIFFICULT like the later levels in Ouendan/EBA But the whole dating thing is really quite fucking awesome. You have your choice of like six different princes and you're pretty much dating all of them at the same time. Holy shit, I'm a princess! Are those accessories I can wear?! Oh my god, Prince Claus is soooo dreamy!
If you do plan on playing this though, do not choose Vincent. The little cocksucker.

Freeware Game of The Year
The thing about horror games nowadays is that they're all too action-oriented (see: Dead Space, Siren: Blood Curse, RE4). What's the point of putting creepy monsters in front of me if I can just beat them to death? And jump scares are not scary. They are shocking. People interchange the definitions of scary and shocking far too often. When I play a horror game, I expect to be terrified. I expect to be afraid of standing near my bed at two in the morning because something will grab me. And then when I'm in bed, I expect to keep glancing around nervously just in case something has silently appeared.
There's like, maybe two games that has made me uneasy and restless. Then there's Irisu Syndrome. You look at it and say, 'Oh hey, this looks like a pretty cute puzzle game', but you can't shake the feeling that something is very, very wrong. This game is the only game that has scared me to the point that I ran out of the fucking room. And because of that, it's a masterpiece.

Retail Game of The Year
Rhythm Tengoku Gold. It's one of those minigame collections, except it requires real rhythm. And of course, since I don't know Japanese, I had the bonus pleasure of trying to figure out what the hell I had to do every stage. Some of them are just plain hard, like the second ping pong stage. RTG is excellent and you should feel totally awful about yourself if you have a DS and flash cart and have not played it.

Well, Happy New Year, folks! Enjoy getting drunk and waking up next to a complete stranger. Remember to steal his/her wallet and send me a nice gift because I know how much you enjoy my blog.

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