The EZA Community Top 25 Best of 2012!
Mass Effect 3 has one of my favorite ending in videogames and I’m talking about its original ending. I’m still amazed how something can be both so simple and incredibly powerful at the same time.
Spoiler warning! Also long emotional post warning!
Through the whole game you are racing against time to build the ultimate weapon against Reapers and save the Galaxy once and for all. With incredible sacrifices (including the death of two companions you’ve took on the last mission) you reach your destination where you learn that your goal, the thing you were hoping for, the thing you’ve put everything on is simply unachievable. Yet in this moment of despair there is still a thing you need to do: you need to make a choice. A choice you not ready for. A choice you are not authorized to make. A choice only you can make.
This very moment is what makes Mass Effect 3 so special. In any other game you either reach one of the ending automatically based on your previous choices, or you mindlessly pick one of the options based on what type of playthrough (good/evil/etc.) you are playing. But in Mass Effect 3 you have to look back at your whole journey and think. Think about every choice you made and its result. Think about every fraction you’ve meet and your feelings about them. Think about who you are and in what future you believe the most. And once you realize that for his/her whole life Shepard was unknowingly preparing for this very moment you understand what choice he/she would make.
Like a true piece of art Mass Effect 3 speaks about real life’s problems. About how sometimes your hopes can be crushed, but you must still carry on. About how to make choices you are not prepared for. About starting a new when you can’t return to the past.
Sadly the Internet only wanted a generic game where ending is decided by flags in your savegame and there’s one “sunshine and rainbows” true ending that is considered a canon. And as a result many of those who haven’t played Mass Effect 3 think that it’s a bad game. I’m extremely glad that this community thinks otherwise.
P.S. I played multiplayer for almost two month and I liked it. It nothing to praise, but it’s definitely not an unnecessary filler.
Capnbobamous last edited by
Mass Effect 3 is great, and the backlash was way overblown. The original ending was somewhat lack-luster (not enough to warrant a lawsuit), but the extended ending adds a lot to the game. The story is great, and is honestly emotional at times. It also has some of the best character interactions in the series, further cementing Garrus' god-tier status.
It's a game that feels urgent, like a race against time. The entire time, the game feels like a conclusion. It makes you understand that this is the last time you're interacting with these characters, making you really appreciate it. It's just a good fucking game.
The Walking Dead is excellent, and is still on of the best games I've ever played. No matter how many times I play it, all of the emotional moments hit me. In fact, I don't think I've ever played it to completion without crying. The writing is excellent, and it kind of blows me away that so much happens in only like eight hours. Though it eventually grew tiresome, the episodic structure also adds a lot to the game. It helps the game flow naturally while still having a number of self-contained stories.
I don't really get the argument that the choices don't matter. Sure, you get the same ending no matter what you do, but why does that matter? For me, at least, its much more about the journey than the ending. I would argue that the game having the same ending no matter what you do is more thematically powerful than if you could change it. A big theme of the game is futility. No matter what happens, or how much you fight it, we all end up the same way. It's up to you to make the best with what you've got. To make the best for those you leave behind. I can't think of a better way to get that theme across than the final 10 minutes of episode 5.
The Walking Dead was #5 on my list. I liked its story and it opened a new genre for me. Played all Telltale games that were released after that.
Here are my 2012 GotYs:
- Mass Effect 3
- Zero Escape: Virtue's Last Reward
- Spec Ops: The Line
- Dance Central 3
- The Walking Dead
- XCOM: Enemy Unknown
- Borderlands 2
I've previously explained all my picks but one: Dance Central 3. Dance Central trilogy were the only games I played on Xbox 360. Loved them despite not being able to dance at all. Also I love Kinect and I'm sad that this technology died. It had so much potential especially in VR era.
TokyoSlim last edited by TokyoSlim
I will never get over the ending of Mass Effect 3. F*ck that ending. First two games are great. Third one is one of the biggest gaming disappointments of my life.
Game didn't even make my list.
1: Persona 4 Golden (disqualified, but still counts in my mind. It's a standalone game and is not lumped in with P4. I shifted everything up one and did not add another HM)
2: Sleeping Dogs
3: Gravity Rush
4: Binary Domain am I the only one that voted for this?
HM: Tokyo Jungle, Wipeout 2048, FTL, Dragon's Dogma
bam541 last edited by bam541
Ah, The Walking Dead. It just missed of getting my vote. I feel like a god damn broken record for saying this, but it's also a case of "thought fondly of it then, and not so much today". As someone who was familiar with Telltale's work before this (love the Sam & Max games), my positive views of this game today is mostly attributed to the fact that this game made Telltale go into the big time. It's cool to see a lesser known developer that you like go famous after doing something special that many people really liked. I enjoyed the story back when I played it, and the choices it forced me to make are pretty mind-taxing. It was one of the first games that got me feeling emotional. Still, something just makes me more apprehensive about it today, despite me not being able to recall big problems with the game.
As for Mass Effect 3, well... I only played the first two hours of the game, had some fun, then never came back to it for some reason.
I will update my post with my full list of votes shortly. Big thanks to everyone here for participating and giving your own thoughts about your entries, and to @Axel for setting up this whole beautiful thing.
Update: here's my list of votes!
- Max Payne 3
- Need for Speed: Most Wanted
- FTL: Faster Than Light
- Katawa Shoujo
Binary Domain - you're not alone, @TokyoSlim
The only one that I haven't given my thoughts on is Criterion's NFS Most Wanted since it didn't get in. Would it surprise any of you that this is my favorite racing game of all time? The ones that came up very close are GT Sport and Shift 2 Unleashed. Anyway, I just remember enjoying this game so much. I love collecting the cars, I love how it controls, I love the soundtrack. I don't think I've been so invested in a racing game. Fairhaven was a fun place to roam around too. My opinion of this game actually went up after I played Burnout Paradise Remastered on the PS4 weeks ago, as when I was playing it I kept thinking about how much more fun NFS Most Wanted is. I feel a bit sad that it didn't made it in though. Oh well.
Sentinel Beach last edited by
Mass Effect 3 is a good game, an intense experience. Not as good as ME2 so didn't make the cut for me now.
The Walking Dead from Telltale is one of the most gripping game series this decade. I was there right from the beginning, I remember the surprised buzz for the first episode, and what a year that developed into. At least for me that was something truly new, making life and death decisions for your companions on that gruesome journey. Lee and Clementine, oh man... And Kenny! What a partner.
It took eventually seven years to finish Clementine's story, I'm happy we got that closure this spring after all those sad news.
Here's my list for 2012, I got six of my eight games in:
#1: Hotline Miami
#2: Lego The Lord of the Rings (not in)
#3: The Walking Dead: Season One
#4: Darksiders II (not in)
HM: Far Cry 3
HM: Max Payne 3
HM: Sleeping Dogs
HM: Spec Ops: The Line
The Lord of the Rings is my favourite Lego game, that thing is beautiful af! The way they made the Middle-earth the big hub world to travel, mmmmhhhhh! It feels so good! From sunny Shire with its music all the way to dark Mordor. Seeing Amon Sûl and Isengard and Rohan and Gondor and all those places and then going in. I mean I love Marvel so freaking much and those games are so fun to play, but the environment and the atmosphere place LotR on the first place for me.
Darksiders II is a very enjoyable game, I've finished it a few times. Death is so much more agile than War from the first game and the whole combat system feels freaking good with the scythes. The world and all those places are built in that Zelda style, secrets in many places. Getting new items and returning to previous areas with them. And the whole Diablo style loot system with the weapons and gear made the whole experience really addictive, cool surprises pretty often. Jesper Kyd as the composer ties it all together. That Guardian Theme for the first hub world, oh my God!
Hazz3r last edited by
Love Mass Effect 3. Love the ending, but I do think that the fourth option the extended cut gives you is necessary for completeness. It’s the canon ending imo.
I think the combat in that game is glorious and some of the DLCs and Missions are incredible. It’s hard to believe what they were able to accomplish in barely 18 months development. I prefer the game over Mass Effect 2, which feels much too like a stopgap for my tastes. That said, the DLC Arrival is a Masterpiece.
The only thing that I find really quite repugnant is that the choices you make ultimately don’t matter. And I’m not even talking about the ending. They had a really cool opportunity to make a choice made in the first game have a real, tangible effect in the third one, that can be seen not just in story but noticed in moment to moment gameplay. I’m continually disappointed that it was never put into action.
Ultimately, I think the game is a wonderful conclusion to a legendary trilogy. Prime remake/remaster candidates for Next Gen consoles imo.
Hazz3r last edited by
I was really lucky that I already bought Telltale games religiously prior to The Walking Dead because of the Back to the Future and the Jurassic Park games that I found through a YouTube let’s player called DarksydePhil. I found them really really enjoyable, and was high on The Walking Dead at the time, so when I heard they were releasing a Telltale series I was barely able to contain myself.
I played every episode within hours if not minutes of release, and talked about it for hours on end afterwards with friends and on forums.
What an emotional journey. It’s just an incredible piece of story telling and I recommend it to anyone and everyone.
Exist 2 Inspire last edited by
Persona 4 Golden would've easily won this countdown :P #robbed
Sheria last edited by Sheria
My top 8:
Final Fantasy XIII-2
Zero Escape: Virtue's Last Reward
Resident Evil: Revelations
The Last Story
Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance
Theatrhythm Final Fantasy
Tales of Graces f
I found The Walking Dead to be a bit a big let down after such great series such as Sam and Max, Back to the Future and their Tales of Monkey Island. They used to make some really good Point and Click adventure games but they dropped a lot of what made the genre what it is when it came to TWD and beyond. Such a shame. As for ME3, I think it got enough of a beating back that year, I wouldn't exactly call it a positive mark for video games in 2012.
Hidz last edited by
My top 8 is:
#1: Telltale's The Walking Dead: Season One
#3: Dragon's Dogma
#4: Mass Effect 3
Honorable mentions: Journey, Far Cry 3, Diablo III, Borderlands 2
Persona 4 Golden was my first number one pick. I totally forgot about Binary Domain and Gravity Rush, they would easily make it in my top 8. I should start double checking before voting.
paulmci27 last edited by
The only game that I voted for that didn't make the list was Binary Domain that I gave a HM to. I feel bad now that I didn't rank it higher. Its the King of the 7s.
E_Zed_Eh_Intern last edited by
I played the Walking Dead. It was ok but not nearly enough traditional gameplay to get a vote out of me.
Mass Effect 3 I never played but I enjoyed 2 enough that I likely could have voted for 3 had I played it. I don't doubt it's a worthy game.
Glad to see that ME3 made the list. I was a little worried people was just gonna meme it out with the ending and not put it on their lists! Over all its a good game with some solid DLC. Its not as good as ME2 though, just didnt feel as a "grand finish" as I would of hoped for, but its still great and deserve its position.
Dishonored is one of those games I got a weird relationship with. I really like it, but I also hate it in many ways. I felt awesome when shadowstepping around and assassinating guards etc This game also had some solid DLC, liked the ending, but yeah, something was missing.
NeoCweeny last edited by
3)Kid Icarus: Uprising
4)New Super Mario Bros U
HM)Far Cry 3
HM)Resident Evil: Revelations
I'm glad Hotline Miami made it in the top 10. It's probably still my favorite indie game ever. Gameplay is really fun and satisfying, difficulty level is perfect and the soundtrack and style are amazing.
It seems like Pandora's Tower is still one of the most underappreciated games of the last generation as it didn't make the top 25. Such a shame.
Axel last edited by
Alright, let's recap this bad boy!
- The Walking Dead is the GOTY with only 43 points and only 4 GOTY votes, the lowest score ever. The previous "worst winner" was Shovel Knight in 2014 with 48 points. But we had only 31 people voting, so it didn't help.
- To its credit, it is, with Shovel Knight, only the second indie game (I think it classifies?) to win GOTY!
- Mass Effect 3 took second place, despite its bad rep! It's the highest ranking ever achieved by an EA game, their previous best was #6 with Dragon Age: Inquisition.
- In third place, Dishonored with 3 GOTY votes, more than Mass Effect 3 (only 2). Its sequel, Dishonored 2, didn't even rank in 2016 with only 4 points. What happened, fans?
- This means the top 3 are all Western-developed games, a feat only achieved in 2014 and 2018! All third-party publishers too, first-party studios were in a bit of a slump!
- Guess which platform had the most exclusives that year? The mighty PC, with 4 games (Hotline Miami, Diablo III, FTL: Faster Than Light, Katawa Shoujo)!
- The PlayStation 3 follows up with... 3 exclusives: Journey, Tokyo Jungle and Tales of Graces f.
- Its little sister the PlayStation Vita launched that year and 2 exclusives made it: Gravity Rush (#5!)and Wipeout 2048.
- Slow year for the 3DS with 2 exclusives: Kid Icarus: Uprising and Resident Evil: Revelations.
- 1 lonely Wii exclusive: The Last Story.
- This means Kid Icarus: Uprising is the only Nintendo game in the list, which is also a record, what a sad year it was to be a Nintendo fan.
- Not a single Wii U launch title made it! But remember the PS4 and Xbox One also scored zero exclusive for their launch a year later.
- Zero Xbox 360 exclusive as well, but we're used to that!
- Now for the games that almost made it! Lego The Lord of the Rings, Binary Domain and Nintendo Land with 6 points!
- 5 points: Need for Speed: Most Wanted, The Unfinished Swan, Super Hexagon, Halo 4.
- 4 points: Rhythm Heaven Fever, Ys Origins, Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor 2, Darksiders II, Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Future Soldier, Legend of Grimrock, Pandora's Tower, New Super Mario Bros. U, The Darkness II.
- 3 points: Sonic & All Stars Racing Transformed, Dust: An Elysian Tail, Syndicate, Fez.
- 2 points: Dance Central 3, Resident Evil 6, Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan, Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, Pokémon Black 2 and White 2, Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance, Theatrhythm Final Fantasy.
- 1 point: Persona 4 Arena, Mark of the Ninja, NCAA Football 13, Cherry Tree High Comedy Club, Rock Band Blitz, WWE '13, Street Fighter X Tekken, Uncharted: Golden Abyss, Resistance: Burning Skies, CounterStrike: Global Offensive, Natural Selection 2, Forza Horizon, Thomas Was Alone, Call of Duty: Black Ops II, Lollipop Chainsaw, Crusader Kings II, Dustforce, ZombiU.
- 0 point: Soulcalibur V, Ninja Gaiden 3, Kinect Star Wars, New Super Mario Bros. 2, Paper Mario: Sticker Star, Hitman: Absolution, PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale...
It's the first time my personal GOTY wins!
I've only played 6 games out of this Top 25. The only one on my backlog would be Mass Effect 3, but I haven't even played 2...
Thanks again to all participants, you're all making this super fun! Next stop will be in January for the much anticipated 2019 GOTY, I feel it's gonna be an unpredictable one!
I just missed the deadline for October's Community Showcase but I'll submit this list to the Allies in November so they can tell us how wrong we are, feel free to remind me of doing it when the time comes.
@axel I planned to submit results to October's Q&A to inform most of the allies. But I think that doing both is a good idea since YouTube & Twitch has slightly different audience. Besides Q&A allows only 200 words while Community Showcase has 500 limit, so I will sadly have to omit this wonderful analysis.
What do you think?
P.S. I've considered Hitman: Absolution for my #8. It has problems, but I liked it.
Capnbobamous last edited by
My top 8:
The Walking Dead: Season 1
Mass Effect 3
Spec Ops: The Line
Lego The Lord of the Rings
I kinda wish I put Nintendo Land and Lego LotR in my top 4, because they are excellent games and deserve to have made the list. I'm also pretty surprised I was the only person to vote for Forza Horizon. I feel like that made a pretty big splash when it came out but maybe I'm wrong.
E_Zed_Eh_Intern last edited by
Final Fantasy XIII-2
Persona 4 Arena
Street Fighter x Tekken
Sonic and All-Stars Racing Transformed
Spec Ops: The Line
If you aren't into fighting games but are into Persona and want to get into fighting games, P4A is a great place to enter. Definitely complex at higher levels but just the way all the Persona stuff is incorporated is neat. On that, I recently went back to SFXT, it doesn't hold up and would not be on my list anymore.