When it comes to evaluating your video game purchased based on the amount of cash you had to part with in order to play it, titles fall in one of three categories. The first are games you feel were worth every single penny that you spent, the second are games that you severely overpaid for because of quality issues or truncated length, and the third are games that make you feel like you committed highway robbery by paying such a pittance for the honor of playing it.
This list focuses on the third category: games that were so robust and filled with content and replay value that it makes the $60 (or however much you ended up paying) investment seem woefully disproportionate to the fun and enjoyment derived.
StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty
It is incredibly hard to believe that there were actually some people complaining about the price tag of Blizzard’s latest real time strategy masterpiece. Some were griping that Activision had bumped the price up from $50 to $60 (which is understandable), but others were whining about Blizzard’s decision to partition “StarCraft II” into three separate games, one for each of the race’s campaigns.
If “StarCraft: Wings of Liberty” was just the campaign, this complaint might have some merit, as it only lasts about ten hours or so and has limited replay value outside of achievements. However, “StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty” also comes packed with one of the most deep, addicting multiplayer experiences ever. You can easily invest countless hours mastering strategies for the game’s three races as you claw your way up the rank ladders, and on top of that, the constant flow of new custom maps (crafted by both Blizzard and community members) means there’s always something new to play. The story mode is already awesome (though perhaps not worth the full price of admission), but as any true “StarCraft” fans know, the campaign is just the bonus. The meat of the game is its multiplayer, and in that regards, “StarCraft II” delivers an endless buffet of Zerg-rushing, Reaper-harassing, Stalker-warping goodness you won’t tire of any time soon.
Call of Duty: Black Ops
I’ll just get this out of the way right now --”Call of Duty: Black Ops’” campaign mode isn’t that great. Without cooperative multiplayer to add buoyancy to an experience dragged down by predictable storytelling and heavily scripted action sequences, the story mode is little more than a fun distraction, especially since it’s easily beatable in a handful of hours. Like “StarCraft II”, though, “Call of Duty: Black Ops” earns its stay with the insane amount of content that the developers have packed into its multiplayer offerings.
Essentially, “Call of Duty: Black Ops” takes everything that made “Modern Warfare 2” successful and adds more. There’s several new customization options that allow you to detail everything from your clan tag to your face paint, contracts, Wager Mode and much, much more for multiplayer enthusiasts to lose themselves in. Treyarch could have just left it at that and “Call of Duty: Black Ops” would’ve been worth its price tag, but they upped the ante with the ridiculously challenging and entertaining Zombie Mode as well.
Casual fans probably will get their $60 from “Call of Duty: Black Ops” and then switch to “Killzone 3” or something similar come 2011. Hardcore fans, though, know there will be no alternative until “Modern Warfare 3” is inevitably released sometime in the future.
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