From Part 1: [Beginning in 2005 with the launch of the Xbox 360 and continuing with the launch of the PlayStation 3 and Nintendo Wii in 2006, the previous generation of the consoles was fraught with some of the most stellar titles of all time. With the release of the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One (and the WiiU being somewhere in between), this generation is winding down to a close.
What a ride this has been. We saw the rise of indie game development and more prominent digital distribution of video games. Wireless controllers have become the standard, as well as entertainment features that became a standard for all gaming devices (Netflix, Youtube, etc). However, the real reflection needs to be on the games, as the quality has peaked yet again.
Disclaimer: I have not played everything, nothing on PC. As I will try to be objective, ultimately, this list will of course be comprised of my opinion. Because of the amount of games that this generation has had, I'm guaranteed to miss a couple of your favorites. That's what the comment section is for. Onward! Oh, and there may be some spoilers…]
10) Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock, 2007
I know many prefer Rock Band, but I had extensive time with Guitar Hero. They aren’t as popular anymore, but music games used to be HUGE! You had rhythm games like Space Channel 5 and Samba de Amigo on Dreamcast, but Guitar Hero was the game that introduced the music genre into the mainstream and gave it true life. Guitar Hero III made the list because, in my opinion, the series peaked here. It was the best soundtrack of them all.
9) NBA 2K11, 2010
The greatest sports game of the generation features the greatest athlete of any generation, poetic, huh? That isn’t completely why this game made the list. Usually the improvements between annual sports games are incremental, but the jump from NBA 2K10 to NBA 2K11 was vast. Character models were improved greatly and many gameplay mechanics were introduced. It added Jordan Mode, which let players experience the 10 greatest moments from His Airness’ career. Another thing about this game is how it destroyed its competition, the NBA Live series. Madden decided to buy the rights to the NFL, making them the only ones able to make a football game. Essentially, Madden bought their way out of competition. As for NBA 2K11, the game was so good that their rivals didn’t even bother releasing a game that year, and for the following years.
8) Batman: Arkham City, 2011
Licensed video games is always a fine line. Making a video game based on movies, comic books, and other mediums usually suck quite frankly. Every now and then you get The Warriors or Spider-man 2, but for the most part, don’t expect quality. When Batman: Arkham Asylum dropped in 2009, it was a good game. It wasn’t good for a comic book game, it was a good game period. It was atmospheric, contained an easy to use yet difficult to master combat system that is emulated in many games these days, and the story was phenomenal. Two years later came Batman: Arkham City, which took the Asylum formula and increased the quality exponentially and added tons of more secrets and Easter eggs to a much larger world. Arkham City showed that Asylum’s success wasn’t luck, but something intentional and thus, inspirational.
Check out Part 3, counting down 7-6 of the top 10!