149 points, 10 votes, 2.33 TOP GAME votes
abanana: Proves that Nintendo’s drones can pump out just as good a good a game as Miyamoto can.
if: Putting this at number one feels a lot like the easy route, the vote for the Arcade Fire as album of the year, but in this case there really is no other option. The best game of this gen, remade with new levels and with all of the same invention and creativity intact, as well as a few minor fixes (like the clock pickups making the timed levels more thrilling than frustrating). Clearly it was never going to have the same revelatory effect as the first one, and I’ll take Rosalina and her storybook over the faceship every time, but the basic happiness from playing stills beats everything else.
Polyphonic: This was the year I finally played Super Mario Galaxy 1, and of course this game is not a huge departure from that one. Collectively these two games prove that Nintendo is still unmatched when it comes to level design. Constantly changing but always intuitive and built in a manner that is fun for gamers and noobs alike. When faced with the innovation of games like Portal and Braid, Nintendo proved that they can do stuff like that with their eyes closed without sacrificing mass appeal.
ilxor: Super Mario Galaxy 2 was my go-to game for most of the year. I played it two or three times through; am currently hunting for green coins. The puzzles are extremely clever and can be frustrating in parts (in a good way, promise). Two-player mode is addictive, and the nature of the P2 controls having a simple, secondary role allows for my elementary-aged kiddo to get in on the fun. Well-done Mario games are pretty much in a class of their own as far as I’m concerned. This one’s perfect.
tomofthenest: It’s very good. More of the same, but so many ideas and so much fun. Most of the boring stuff from SMG1 has been ripped out and replaced with new cool stuff that works. Only criticism is that it’s been a little on the easy side.
Jeff Levine: Picked this up tonight and played for about an hour. There’s something about hearing Mario go, “yeah” and “woo hoo” that is instantly more fun than most other games and puts a big, stupid smile on my face. Design and graphics so far impress (no surprise there). I especially enjoyed the first 2d section that introduces the game (I understand the game plays with 2d more?) and riding around on Yoshi – who feels especially powerful – so much better to be able to eat up those enemies than to bounce on their heads, toss star bits at them, do the spin attack, or run away.
J0hn Darnie11e:I agree that the linear “you’re here to do this task right now” nature of it is a little bit of a drag but the game is a blast otherwise. The purple coin treetrunk race was a fucking blast.
Autumn Almanac: I gave up on Sarah Michelle Gellar 2 after star 55 because of all the lazy timed/racing shit. It’s 2010 and I don’t want to be pissfarting around with that crap. It’s a shame, because up until star 40-odd I was infatuated with this game. Thoroughly inventive but very, very boring when you’re expected to execute the same perfectly-timed series of pinpoint jumps etc. 100+ times in succession. That’s not fun.
Captain Lorax: This is better than the first one. I feel that it has a bit more emphasis on the gameplay. One of my top 3 games of the year.
60 points, 6 votes
CraigG: Aside from Pro Evolution Soccer, this is the best fun to have with a bunch of friends round. It outdoes Pro Ev in that I can get my girlfriend to play this with me and my friends without ending up shouting at her for not knowing the controls.
Webber: I find it very difficult to use the wheel and prefer to use a gamecube controller. The only problem with the gamecube controller is that it is almost impossible to do tricks/wheelies.
Zappi: After the initial disappointment, I really got into this. The single player is kinda useless and annoying inthat you have to play through it to unlock some stuff, but the online works really well. Downloading ghost data that other people have posted to race against is a great idea. I think the biggest change is the addition of trick jumps and ledges which you can get a boost from if you time it right – some are worth it and some aren’t, so you really start thinking about different routes around the track. Oh and, yet again, fuck a blue shell… though the new thundercloud item is genius.
Forksclovetofu: Nintendo’s notion that giving the public what they want means reissuing the same game a zillion times over the course of a decade has rarely paid off better than with Mario Kart Wii. The minor improvements add up. To have more fun with a group of four people, you need to be high or naked. It’s good times.
91 points, 8 votes
Zappi: People are downplaying this one because it doesn’t “push gaming forward” or whatever. Pfffffft. It’s got what I want: clean simple graphics, responsive controls and brilliant level design. Nobody does this better than Nintendo.
CraigG : This has managed to slightly delay my desire to sell my Wii. I loved New Super Mario on the DS and this is just more of the same. While most of the power-ups are re-skinned from previous Mario adventures, there is a great variety that (like SMB 3) helps keep the game fresh. I guess the main appeal here is nostalgia; I got Mario Bros 3 on the NES for my birthday at an impressionable age. It’s just so endlessly fun to have the same gameplay mechanics in the familiar desert, ice, air, etc, scenarios but with all new levels!
If: Would be on my top ten for the frenzied, hotly contested multiplayer alone, even if it didn’t have a single player with its share of classic moments as well.
Jamescobo: Granted, it was awfully light on content, but the addition of multiplayer effectively makes the game endless in a way LittleBigPlanet could only dream of.
JeffLevine: A 2-D Mario game? For most gamers, that’s probably all I need to say. If it hadn’t released in the middle of a crowded holiday season when there were so many other games to play and without online, I certainly would’ve ranked it even higher.