every time i look at a diagram of a molecule i can’t not see some underwear and a crotch and some legs than have been chopped off
ok here do you see it now?
BUT WAIT it gets worse when you get to more complex molecules like hydrocarbons
and by worse i mean disturbing
THIS ISN’T CHEMISTRY ANY MORE THIS IS SILENT HILL
I’m not a huge fan of putting things in Top Countdown Lists or things like that. But I do feel like I want to talk about what I did and did not like about video games in 2012. I spent a hell of a lot of time playing them, so I should’ve gotten SOMETHING out of it, right? So, no list of my top picks. Instead, I’m gonna go through and pick out games that stood out in some way or another for me and talk about them a bit. Let’s go!
First up is 2012’s best game about Boobs and Swords, Soul Calibur V. It always amuses me when a new Soul Calibur game comes out and the community explodes into rage. People get angry at the character designs mostly, because the women wear less with every entry and things get more ridiculous. They’ll say things about how it used to be a respectable brand and now it’s just soft core porn. And that’s funny to me because it makes me wonder what game I’ve been playing. I didn’t play much of the first Soul Calibur since I never owned a Dreamcast, but near as I can tell Soul Calibur has ALWAYS been just hitting other people with weapons and watching boobies bounce around. I completely agree that sexism and objectification are problems that need to be treated, not just in video games. But as a guy who’s attracted to ladies, I can sympathize with the desire to watch boobies bounce around, and I think that Soul Calibur is an outlet for that. Why not keep it in there so that maybe guys won’t need to see it in EVERY game?
For something completely different, let us talk about what was probably the year’s Biggest Disappointment. That’d be Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City. When Capcom announced that they were making a RE squad shooter, I was pretty skeptical. But then they started releasing details, and things were looking pretty neat. The game play footage they were showing looked like a lot of fun. But then the game came out, and I played it. The stale or just plain terrible voice work, completely unnatural character animations, and sluggish, clunky control scheme made the whole experience feel like I was playing a game from the 90’s. I kind of wonder if maybe that’s what Capcom was going for, but if so it was a really bad decision. It didn’t make me feel nostalgic, it just disappointed me. I did get some pretty neat patches in the CE box, so I guess that’s a plus.
Speaking of disappointing things, it’s time to talk about Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning. The game wasn’t disappointing; I actually rather enjoyed it. The surrounding corporate bullshit completely eclipsed the game itself. What could’ve been a really great thing in a new IP turned into “Hey, remember back when baseball’s Curt Schilling made a game with Todd McFarlane and RA Salvatore and borrowed money from Rhode Island and then DIDN’T PAY ANYONE? Wasn’t that awesome? Man, what was that game even called?” It’s sad, really. If you didn’t play Amalur and you like fantasy setting action RPGs, please do play it. It’s good stuff.
I bought a Vita when it came out, and then Sony forgot they made the thing. I don’t regret the purchase and I’ve had a lot of fun playing it. But, more than half of the games I’ve played on it were PSP games. Ultimate Marvel v Capcom 3 was bullshit and got traded right back in. Touch My Katamari and Gravity Rush were both a lot of fun, but also got traded in. That was because I decided that I don’t want to keep swapping game cards all the time because the tiny teeth that hold the cover in place are gonna wear out and I don’t want that. So now the only card I have is Lumines Electronic Symphony, and that’s staying right where it is.
In the Vita digital front, I played a lot of Disgaea 3 and that was Disgaea 3. The main attraction, and the reason I bought the Vita in the first place, was and still is Persona 4 Golden. I spend time every night playing it before bed, and it in the Vita next to my bed makes it that much tougher to get up in the morning. I can’t say enough good things about P4G. If you have a Vita and don’t have this game, you should be ashamed of yourself. Twice.
Speaking of Persona 4, Persona 4 Arena is probably my favorite fighting game ever. It’s a whole lot of fun to play, and the story is pretty good (by my low fighting game story standards). Check it out, if you haven’t!
I feel like I should say something about Assassin’s Creed III, but I don’t really know what to say. I bought it, and I played some of it. I really enjoyed most of what I played, but I haven’t gone back to it. I don’t feel like I’ve played enough to make a solid judgement on whether or not it’s a good game. BUT! It’s already better than Revelations so there’s that!
Something I played a whole lot more than AC3 was Borderlands 2. I played a lot of Borderlands 2, and I’m not done yet. It’s still in my “Now Playing” list on Backloggery. I absolutely loved Borderlands, and the sequel delivers the same if not more awesome in just about every category. I have a high tolerance for loot grind, so that aspect doesn’t bother me like I’ve read about it bothering other people. It’s a good time, and I hear it’s even better with more people. If you ever see me online and want to play, let me know.
I did stop playing Borderlands 2 long enough to play Halo 4. And I… that is… I dunno. Halo 4 is a really weird beast for me. On one hand, it’s a hell of a lot of fun and possibly the best Halo game. On the other hand, I fucking hate it and I wish it never happened. You see? It’s strange. The multiplayer is super good. The level progression succeeds where Reach’s failed in making me actually feel like there’s something to accomplish. In Reach, the only affect it had on the game was ranking for matchmaking and cosmetic armor choice. In Halo 4, leveling up unlocks access to cosmetic armor choices along side other, more substantial things. Specializations, loadout abilities, and loadouts themselves. And the loadout system really fixed my problem with the gold rush mentality that people took on in previous Halo games. Where, at the start of a match, everyone would rush to grab the power weapon on that map and then the one who got it would have the crazy advantage. Fewer drop weapons means that doesn’t happen as much, and I like that. But then there’s Halo 4’s story. It was short, for one thing. When I finished it, at first I just said “Huh. So that happened.” But then things started to digest. I thought back on what exactly it was that happened. And as time went on, I started to realize more and more that I wasn’t at all happy with it. And in fact, I hated it. I won’t go into details because I know of some people who haven’t finished it. But it’s one of those things for me, similar to Other M, where I’d like to just forget that it happened.
I wrapped up 2012 and began 2013 playing Halo 4 multiplayer, and playing Far Cry 3 single player. Far Cry 3 is another strange beast, but I’m enjoying it. The visuals are pretty not good in a lot of ways, but then also good in a lot of ways. From far away, the lush, green jungle looks pretty nice. Up close, the choppy frame rate, vertical tearing, and low res textures make things look… not good. It’s my understanding that the PC version is much better, and that’s a symptom of this console generation having gone on for so damn long. But that’s another discussion entirely. The story missions have been a thing that’s there, and I don’t have a strong opinion either way about them. But the side stuff has mostly been a blast, and that’s what keeps me going back in. I was tracking a boar because I needed it’s precious skin to make a belt, and I was pounced on by a tiger. I punched that tiger in its face and then killed it. I punched a shark in its face, too. And then I fought a bear. All in the same game. I’m really hoping for Dinosaur DLC.
This post is pretty long, huh? And out of nowhere, too. So, let’s wrap this up and move on to the last game I’m gonna talk about. I know I said I wouldn’t do top pick lists and junk like that, but I do still feel like I should pick out and name what I consider to be 2012’s Game of the Year. My criteria is generally just the game I had the most fun playing, and that I look back on the most fondly. For me, this year’s Game of the Year is Mass Effect 3. That game completely took over my life for at least a month. I loved just about all of it, even the repetitive combat sequences. It wasn’t as good an experience as ME2 was, but very few things are. I’m sure its pedigree helps lift its standing in my eyes, but that doesn’t make it any less good. It probably could’ve been more than it was, but so can everything else that comes out. There was a lot of outcry over the game, and I get why. But when I look at what people are actually saying, it’s mostly the same. The game was great, and then the ending happened. The problem I see is that people let what they thought was a crappy ending ruin the ride. All told, I feel like the problems with the game as far as the abridged ending and weird DLC choices (From Ashes and Leviathan really should’ve been main game content) are all EA’s blame. BioWare put together a quality piece of art and then EA broke it up to sell it. Some of the stuff was pretty silly, like eavesdropping to pick up fetch quests and all, but Mass Effect has had those quirks throughout. I eagerly, if not also somewhat cautiously, await what further offerings they have in store for the universe.
So that’s pretty much my year in games. I’m gonna make a list of other games I played that I didn’t have more than a sentence or two to talk about. Come along for this last little bit, if you would.
- Minecraft XBLA Edition - It’s a time burglar. Ever since creative mode was added, I’ve just made game sprites, but it’s still fun.
- Skyrim - Because that game was forever imprinted on my very being.
- The Amazing Spider-Man - I still really want to try this because people said it’s pretty good and I like good Spider-Man games. But it’s still FULL PRICE and I don’t want to pay that.
- Asura’s Wrath - Worth mentioning because I heard all kinds of talk about how great it is and I really, really don’t want to play it. I hope they make a show out of it or something.
- Penny Arcade’s On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness 3: I bought this TWICE and still haven’t played it. XBLA and android versions, for those curious.
- The Walking Dead - I think I’ve heard more about how great this game is than any other “game I haven’t played” this year. I bought it because it was on sale on XBLA, but I haven’t played it yet. Soon.
- Diablo III - Because I play PC Games sometimes, too!
So that’s 2012 in Games for me. I hope you enjoyed this post. Maybe I’ll post more things on here. Ha ha. Ha. Yeah, right.