40 points, 3 votes
EZ Snappin: ACII was my game of the year last year. This is better in many ways — the new additions to combat and collecting things to unlock items spring to mind — but Rome is no Venice.
MattD: This is sort of a half-vote, as I havn’t touched the single player, but that speaks volumes about the fantastic multiplayer. At its heart it’s just a it’s simple cat-and-mouse game to see who can sneak up on whom (everyone is simultaneously playing both roles). The better you do, the more people hunting you. It’s tense and frantic, and maybe the only competitive implementation of a sneaking mission that works well for both the hunter and hunted.
40 points, 3 votes
if: Beyond basic functionality, I actually don’t really care at all for the aesthetics of SMB (now there’s a deliberate acronym). I think I may also, finally, have reached the point where I see ‘<Item> get!’ and ‘Sorry but the <person> is in another <location>’ and feel absolutely nothing in response. Fortunately the controls, jumping/walljumping mechanics, sense of speed and level design were near perfect. The replays in which you watch a cloud of your failures gradually and harshly narrowed down to your success were also rightly praised. The number one thing above all of that that made this stand out and be so addictive, though, was the simple but ingenious idea to make all the levels so short. Coupled with NO RELOADING TIMES and the aforementioned speed and responsiveness, this meant that the difficulty could be ramped up to the level where winning often feels exhilaratingly like achieving the impossible, whilst barely ever suffering from un-fun frustration. And each level offering multiple routes with rewards for quick times meant that even if you spent twenty goes repeating the same first section of a level: i) it was really short anyway ii) It wasn’t time wasted, as it could be used to whittle an extra 0.05 seconds off the time for that part and increase your chances of opening up a more sadistically hard level!
silby: Only managed to spend a few minutes with this game so far, but since it combines brilliantly designed puzzle-platforming with an insane glut of content, by the time it’s finally out on a platform that I have regular access to, I might actually bother to beat it.
47 points, 3 votes, 1 TOP GAME vote
Jjjusten: Yeah so we all saw the annoying endless “EIGHT BAGAZILLION GUNS WAHEY LOLOMGWTF!!1!” ads and the driving sections are tacked on and sub halo warthog quality control wise, and storyline and characters need not apply. None of that matters though, because the game is one endless effort at FUN without bothering with all that wheedling “how do we make this a compelling tale of loss and redemption?” This is a game about how fun it is to shoot shit and loot corpses, no soul-searching about yer motivations, because let’s face it, yer a merc dick out to make a bunch of $$$ by plowing through any unfortunate schlubs that happen to be standing between you and some stuff you want, or carrying a cool gun that you like. There’s a palpable sense of humor about the carnage too, and amazingly the wacky claptrap robots are funny, not irritating (as you would expect). A lot of noise has been spent on the online co-op (which is kind of broken in a lot of ways), but this is a 100% rewarding, surprisingly difficult and hardcore single player as well. And those bagazillions of guns? Believe the hype; the weapon looting is endless and full of so much weird insane shit that it honestly never gets unexciting to examine some new weapons spec list. Seriously.
Mayor Jingleberries: Only thing really RPG about it is character classes, fetch quests, experience points, damage shown in numeric form and a progression tree for your skills.
Antexit: I am having remorse about not including Borderlands on my ballot. 😦