2012 was filled with so many awesome new gaming releases, but as every gamer knows there are only so many hours in each day and we inevitably end up with a backlog. The holidays are a great time to dig into this pile of games that has collected over the past 365 days, and so that’s exactly what I did!
Here’s a list of the games that I played this past holiday. I also had brief forays into Mass Effect 3 and Sonic & All Stars Racing: Transformed on the Wii U, and spent more time with ZombiU as well. But the majority of my time I spent with these five games.
Max Payne 3
This was one of those games that I bought at launch, but just didn’t get around to playing during the year. It was still sealed and casting an accusatory beady eye from my gaming draw and I had been wanting to play it for a while, so I ripped that plastic wrapping off and jumped into Max’s world.
While I enjoyed the story and the setting, as well as the variety offered by the flashbacks, the bullet time and flashing distortion in the game was off-putting and became repetitive very quickly, along with the hundreds of thugs that were sent Max’s way. It’s still a game worth checking out, but I hope that Rockstar gets a little bit more creative in the next instalment in the series.
The Walking Dead
This game was a buzz word for most of 2012, and proved its worth by featuring on many Game of the Year lists. I had wanted to see what so many people were willing to do #forClementine and the journey was well worth every penny I spent on it. And the effort it took for me to use my UK Xbox LIVE account and buy UK Microsoft Points to get the special price for the series which wasn’t on the local South African Marketplace.
The chilling decisions that had to be made reminded me so much of Heavy Rain, and have definitely inspired me to replay both games again to see what impacts the choices you make have on the outcome. I finished all four episodes in a gaming marathon on New Year’s Day, and found out what was in the bag in the fifth episode the following day, something which had been intriguing me ever since Oltman reviewed the game.
I played NintendoLand with a bunch of mates during the holiday and again on New Year’s Eve. It really showcases how much fun you can have on Nintendo’s new Wii U console, and how everyone needs to work together in the new attractions that the game features.
Luigi’s Ghost Mansion, Mario Chase and Animal Crossing Sweet Day had more than a few of us shouting to try and beat the person with the GamePad, and reminded me of days spent wiggling the analogue stick to create speed boosts in Double Dash on the GameCube. It’s been a while since I’ve had so much fun playing a casual game together with friends.
New Super Mario Bros. U
This is another great co-operative game that’s really fun to play with your friends. It also generates lots of laughing, shouting and ultimately respect for how much work the GamePad player puts in to save us all from hot lava pits!
Of course there’s always one friend who goes too fast and makes us fall off the stage, but what would New Super Mario Bros be without a touch of frustration? It just makes the victory all the sweeter!
PlayStation All Stars: Battle Royale
The laughter and competitiveness continued as we played PlayStation All Stars: Battle Royale. While many of us quickly selected characters at the start, and this tended to be the Drake’s and Cole’s on the roster, none of us seemed to be able to beat my friend who was playing as Fat Princess!
The competitive brawling continued as we fought across levels inspired by LittleBigPlanet and Killzone, and by the end of the evening our fingers were aching and Fat Princess was still undefeated!
What games did you play this past holiday? Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue?