Welcome to Part 2 of my Top 50. Part 2 looks at #25 to #11 in the countdown, so let's get right into it.
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D
Another legendary (God forbid I use the 'C' word around here) game has been cashed into a remake, this time it's The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, hailed by many as the greatest video game of all time, which was released earlier this year on the Nintendo 3DS. I was never a huge fan of the original. I loved it, but I wouldn't say it's the best game of all time. That honour, my friends, would likely go to Final Fantasy VIII. However, there's no denying the impact this game had on the gaming community as a whole, and its release on the 3DS was inevitable. While it didn't really change the plot in any way, the game mechanics were altered a bit, such as utilising the 3DS' touch screen to select inventory, tilting the 3DS to alter the flight path of the arrows, and more. A refreshing update to one of the greatest games of all time.
Star Wars: The Old Republic
So this game's not supposed to have hit our shores until March, but because we've got a little taste of it early, and the fact that it was released in the US before December 31, I'm slotting it in here. I've wanted to play it ever since it was announced, but I'll probably buy it in March, because everywhere I've been, it's sold out. I've never really considered picking up an MMO until now (and briefly last year after seeing World of Warcraft: Cataclysm), but if I can get it to run on low settings on my computer, I'll be playing it all the time.
Mario Kart 7
Correct me if I'm wrong, but this year is the 20th anniversary of the original Super Mario Kart. Mario Kart 7 was recently released on the 3DS, with some great new features. Vehicle customisation is a sweet addition, where mixing and matching certain elements of your kart is crucial for those pesky 150cc races. Additionally, karts are now able to go above and beyond with a hang glider, or down below, with your kart being fully submersible. Another quality product from Nintendo, who know just what to do to avoid repeating themselves with sequels. Mario Kart 8 on the Wii U should be a blast.
This game is good and all, but it's HARD AS F***. Like, you pretty much need to think all the time, and if you don't, there's severe punishments awaiting you. I haven't played Demon's Souls (are they direct sequels, by the way?), but if Dark Souls is getting similar acclaim, then it must be as good. Is Demon's Souls as hard? Anyway, thank God for the bonfires, that's all I can add.
Alice: Madness Returns
I had never played the original Alice game, nor had I heard of American McGee prior to this one, but for a platformer, this game had me completely mesmerised, despite what people said about this game seeming too simplified and repetitive. From an artsy point of view, this game had some of the best colours I've seen in a game. It was vibrant and it made me believe I was in the same reality as Alice was. One of the year's most underrated games.
Red Faction: Armageddon
I'm surprised I actually enjoyed this one as much as I did. I knew I would like it, but I thought at first I'd place this at around the 35-40 mark, considering Red Faction: Guerilla was pretty mediocre. Regardless, I thought that this game has taken the better parts of Guerilla and left out the bad, because I actually managed to get through this one in less than 48 hours (including sleeping, eating, etc). It's the end of the series with this game, but at least it's gone out on a high.
Gamespot's Best Racing Game of 2011 comes in at #19 on my list, and from this game onwards, things got very, VERY tough for me to decide. What should go where? Why should Game X miss out? I said earlier on that Gamespot awarded DiRT 3 the title of Best Racing Game because DiRT 2 was, well, pretty terrible, and DiRT 3 improved on it in nearly every way possible. And it did. Spectacularly. DiRT 3 added a gymkhana mode which was an absolute blast in groups, as each player tried to outdo one another. It was more of a social thing for me (see Madden NFL 12), but there's no way that anyone can say that DiRT 3 is a bad game.
Crysis 2 takes up #18. In addition to improving graphically on Crysis, which was considered by many as a revolution in graphics, the customisable weapons return and are improved. Unlike the first game, Crysis 2 also appeared on consoles (until earlier this year via XBLA and PSN). Once again the characters are a let down, feeling rather stale and tacked on, and AI is a bit stiff at times, but when all's said and done, you've got yourself a hell of a package here.
Super Mario 3D Land
I've heard rumours going around that this was the game that saved the 3DS. Don't know who came up with that one but at least the rumour has some merits, because this is without a doubt the best game on the 3DS so far. As we've come to expect from a Mario platformer, we've got levels seperated into worlds, and the usual powerups make their return: the fire flower, the Tanooki suit, etc. And once again, we're saving Princess Peach from the clutches of Bowser. So what's new? Well, other than 3D technology, not much, but that's enough to provide you with a sensational reason to get a 3DS. So what's taking me so long?
Saints Row: The Third
A little riddle for you. If Saints Row sucked ass and Saints Row 2 did also, what did Saints Row: The Third do? Well based on the fact that it's #16 in my countdown, it didn't suck ass as much as kick ass. My memory fails me, but regardless of whether or not Gamespot kept their "Most Improved Sequel" in the Best of 2011, I would have voted for this game, because I was almost convinced to buy it a few weeks ago. Almost. Just like I was almost convinced to buy a PS3 a few weeks back. Again, almost. But where both Saints Rows failed, this one actually felt like the characters weren't trying to act all macho and gangster-y, but rather, they already were.
Alright, I never played the originals, but after spending no less than 20 minutes I see where all the fuss was from. I heard the jetpacks are an addition to the series, but they kind of annoyed me because I found it hard to control. Gameplay was different, yet familiar, although it's probably because I imagined I was playing a new series or something. I was kind of confused as to what was going on, but I kind of decided to skip the cutscenes anyway. I heard there's something like over an hour of cutscenes or something. I love cutscenes and don't normally skip them, but I was playing at a friend's house.
Dead Space 2
One of the only games where I've actually, physically crapped my pants, it was also a refreshing change of pace (no, not refreshing change of pants). Dead Space 2 was full of controversial moments including the 'Stick a needle in your eye' scene, which doesn't scare me but I can't play/watch that without rapidly closing my right eye, because I'm imagining something driving into my eyes. Pretty creepy stuff. But a great game throughout. Just play it with a friend with you, it makes the experience around 10 times better.
Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception
Capping off the Uncharted trilogy, this is probably the strongest game in the series in my opinion. Despite the first two being more adventure-y/exploration-y and this one is seemingly all combat-y/run away-y-y, the story seems to be told a lot better. I'd say that I prefer the combat system from the second game, though. However, we're still not at the game which made me want to buy a PS3 a few weeks back. Keep looking.
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
I am not joking. I am not trying to start a flame war here. I just have never gotten into any game in the Elder Scrolls series seriously except maybe, to a certain extent, Morrowind. With over 300 hours of content stashed into the game, there is no denying that The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim will keep you busy for a long time. However, that all depends on your ability to want to play the game, and how good you are at the game (of which I will admit I'm terrible at). I don't hate Skyrim by any means, I just don't think it's the incredible game everyone's making it out to be. To people who get 300 hours on the game, great. But I don't even think I could handle 60.
In my opinion, the Battlefield series has now firmly placed itself ahead of its Activision counterpart Call of Duty. Let's face it, those two are going to be going head to head until one of them dies off. This is the year where Battlefield put its foot down and said "See you at the finish line, pal." Taking everything that made both titles great, giving it a solid, memorable campaign and actually having decent multiplayer maps. Hell, it's the perfect package for a modern day FPS. Rival companies have a lot to learn from this game. Dice have done it again.
So now we've been through 40 of the game's best titles, and we're down to 10. Which game is #1? Click here to find out.