The EZA Community Top 20 Best of 2003!



  • Seeing that these games are all 4 points, I definitely got my number 1 and 2 in this list, lol. I never played any of these games sadly. Omogi looks pretty cool tho. Seeing From Soft made it, it reminds me that their lineup of games so far is kinda like a nutshell for how the games industry the game industry has progrsssed over the years, moving away from more experimental stuff and finding comfort in more defined trends. I feel like I should try their old stuff someday, never played any of their stuff before Demon's Souls.



  • 2003 had so many buried treasures.



  • 0_1660074460186_Ikaruga.png

    #18: Ikaruga - 5 points

    Votes

    #1: 0
    #2: 1 (NeoCweeny)
    #3: 0
    #4: 0
    HM: 1 (Oscillator)

    Information

    Release date: NA: April 15, PAL: May 9
    Developer: Treasure
    Publisher: Treasure
    Genre: Shoot 'em up
    Platform(s): Arcade, Dreamcast, GameCube, Xbox 360, PC, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4

    Links

    Trailer
    Wikipedia



  • @ffff0 said in The EZA Community Top 20 Best of 2003!:

    I guess, it's top 21 due to a tie.

    Yeah, this top 20 list has one extra game because of the tie.



  • Ikaruga is so good and such a neat idea. I haven't played it in years but do remember thinking the colour switching mechanic would break the game and make it impossible to die. Anybody who has played this game knows how that ended. An awesome game I would have voted for had I only played it more.



  • Haven't played Ikaruga, but I know it has a reputation as the definitive "bullet hell" shooter, and it looks very well constructed from all I've seen of it.



  • Shmups is one of the few genres that I don't ever really want to play, so while it's a pass on Ikaruga for me, it's not because of the game, but genre.



  • I've been busy but I wanted to share a short post about SOCOM II

    This is up there as my favourite video game of all time. This is what video games are all about. This is the kind of game I never would've been introduced to without my best friend having a teenaged older brother.

    Him and his friends played SOCOM and SOCOM II online. I didn't even know what online multiplayer was around 2003-2004. Neither did the people at Best Buy! I went there with my step dad to buy a router and an ethernet cord. They looked at me like I had 10 heads. It was new to me too, but I knew I wasn't crazy. We found the router ourselves. Step dad helped me set it up. Fun fact - that same blue ethernet cord from 2004 is plugged into my PC right now. The memories of SOCOM II fuel my internet to this day.

    Once I clicked on the Online button in the main menu, I felt like I unlocked a whole new world. So many servers and maps and game modes. It was all overwhelming. But it was unbelievably cool to play with people online.

    Toxic gaming is a huge problem right now, but I swear to you SOCOM II had a fantastic community. My voice was squeaky like a 10 year old sounds and you'd get the occasional "come back when your balls drop" shit talking, but most people were so nice and all about just playing the objective.

    This game brought friends together like never before in my life. But in terms of quality, this was top tier. The holy trinity of online PvP back then was SOCOM II on PS2, Halo 2 on Xbox, and Counter Strike on PC. All have their merits but I feel like people forget about how high quality SOCOM II was.

    I dearly hope the series returns one day. Unfortunately, my best friend who introduced me to the series has since passed away. He completely outgrew gaming as he got older, but he'd always ask me "Are they making a new SOCOM?! I'll buy a system for SOCOM!" It's just one of those series that those who know, know.



  • @dipset thanks for sharing that.



  • @oscillator Thank you for voting XD

    It is a really well made game. The polarity system, the scoring system, the level design, the boss design,... everything is very well thought-out.

    The soundtrack is excellent also.



  • 0_1660159727172_Project Gotham Racing 2.png

    #16: Project Gotham Racing 2 - 5 points

    Votes

    #1: 1 (Oscillator)
    #2: 0
    #3: 0
    #4: 0
    HM: 0

    Information

    Release date: NA: November 18, EU: November 28
    Developer: Bizarre Creations
    Publisher: Microsoft Game Studios
    Genre: Racing
    Platform(s): Xbox

    Links

    Trailer
    Wikipedia


    0_1660159740027_Indiana Jones and the Emperors Tomb.png

    #16: Indiana Jones and the Emperor's Tomb - 5 points

    Votes

    #1: 1 (bam541)
    #2: 0
    #3: 0
    #4: 0
    HM: 0

    Information

    Release date: NA: February 25, EU: March 28
    Developer: The Collective
    Publisher: LucasArts
    Genre: Action-adventure
    Platform(s): Xbox, PC, PlayStation 2, OS X

    Links

    Trailer
    Wikipedia



  • Didn't expect Indiana Jones and the Emperor's Tomb to be here. That's a nice surprise =D



  • Courtesy of Forza, PGR has been completely replaced, and as a result I have no desire to play them. Which is kind of a shame, as from what I've heard, PGR is solid throughout, but Forza just passed it and never looked back.

    As far as Indiana Jones, I have no relation/interest in the franchise (yes, that includes movies), though I do have the healthy curiosity to see how MachineGames's take is going to be. But we probably won't hear about that for another couple years.



  • @brannox Forza Motorsport is Xbox's answer to Sony's Gran Turismo, with an emphasis on heavy, simulation-style physics and handling.

    PGR, on the other hand, leans further towards lighter, arcadier physics and handling, and has gameplay to match. "Kudos" points are handed out for powersliding, taking clean lines, drafting, hitting top speed, etc. There are special modes such as steering through traffic cones, and overtaking a certain number of cars within a time limit.

    PGR also has a lot more style than both Forza Motorsport and its arcadier counterpart Forza Horizon. Locations are more exotic, car brands are more obscure, incredible amounts of detail are put into the tracks. Even things like the menus, HUD, and car showroom come across as very classy. But Forza just screams blandness throughout. Its lighting engine in particular has always given the cars a flatter look.

    Forza didn't replace PGR through quality (though PGR 3 was rushed for the 360 launch and caused the series to lose a lot of momentum); Microsoft's marketing team just decided to put all its eggs in one basket.

    On PGR 2 specifically, it tightened up many things compared to the original (a launch day title for the Xbox). Cars felt like they gripped the track more, tracks were made wider and the camera was pulled back, the lighting was polished up, and WAY more content was included. PGR 2's car roster and soundtrack are both MASSIVE, and it debuted the biggest track in the series, Germany's 14 mile long Nürburgring Nordschleife.

    PGR 2 was the first entry with Xbox Live support, and it was a hit on the service, with a notable highlight being the community gametype Cat & Mouse, wherein teams each with a supercar and a little slow car (being able to combine car classes was a genius decision) try to get their slow car across the finish line of the Nürburgring first:

    Youtube Video

    More stuff about PGR 2 here - shorturl.at/gvy18



  • @oscillator While I will not argue concerning quality (again, haven't played), I don't know why Forza won out, but: They're still getting made whereas PGR isn't (probably mostly in part to your point regarding PGR 3). And to your comparison regarding Forza being a challenger to GT, it makes sense to me Xbox at the time would want to take some of the market from their competitor, and when they realized there was (and will always be) the desire to have arcade-y and freeform within racing games, Horizon came to be in a bid to keep the brand and simulation while adding something different; thus PGR became the casualty as Forza became more popular.





  • lol I got Indiana Jones in. You know what, maybe not having a lot of voters in the recent top 20s isn't so bad after all xD.

    I haven't finished the game yet (started it somewhat recently) but I'm just enjoying it too much. It's closer to the old Tomb Raider games with the gameplay focusing on traversal, figuring out your way in the linear levels, with mostly short combat sections here and there. It's actually pretty story-light, there's not too much dialogue or cutscenes so far, which makes it impressive that they managed to capture the spirit of the movies so well in mostly gameplay.

    The way this game feels is very interesting, it captures the slower paced vibe of those Tomb Raider games but it's nowhere near as clunky. You'll still be positioning the camera just right so you can move and jump to the right places, but it feels more natural to control Indy here.

    The combat is very old-school, there's guns but you'll be mostly using the autoaim since the manual aim is very slow and unpractical in combat, which makes even the gunfights feel like a scrappy bar brawl. Honestly that's kinda perfect for an Indy game, so in short the combat could be more complex and stuff but it's already fun enough for what it is, and the game doesn't overuse the combat at all.

    Also, Indy's whip here is pretty great. You can disarm weapons from enemies with it, you can use it as a grapple hook at certain spots and the sound effect when you hit someone is satisfying. It's a very good game y'all, massively underrated. I really do believe that it'll be one of my favorite games ever, but I need to finish it to make sure.



  • 0_1660248160889_Soulcalibur II.png

    #15: Soulcalibur II - 6 points

    Votes

    #1: 0
    #2: 0
    #3: 0
    #4: 2 (Sentinel Beach, Axel)
    HM: 2 (Shoulderguy, DIPSET)

    Information

    Release date: NA: August 27, EU: September 26
    Developer: Project Soul
    Publisher: Namco
    Genre: Fighting
    Platform(s): Arcade, GameCube, PlayStation 2, Xbox, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360

    Links

    Trailer
    Wikipedia



  • The only exposure to SoulCalibur I have is to IV, which I discussed in the 2008 countdown, but as far as II goes, I consistently hear it's the series' best, particularly the Gamecube version with the Cover-boy...



  • If 2003 wouldn't have been so heavy, I might've voted for Soul Calibur II. Enjoyed it a lot when I was younger. The Adventure mode I recall being a fun and a challenging time! I had Soul Edge as a child and I don't know if I realized the two were connected, but maybe that's why I was drawn to getting it. Wasn't a big Nintendo kid besides Pokemon, so I doubt it was Link. Even though I do recall getting the Gamecube version!