#65 Sega Superstars Tennis (Xbox 360, 2008)
Apart from local multiplayer, do you know what this generation lacked? It lacked fun and simple versions of Sports games.
The Nintendo Gamecube and Nintendo 64 were first class for games like the “Mario” versions of Tennis, Golf, Baseball and Soccer, but sadly – but for one example later in the list – none of them made their way to the Wii.
Meanwhile, over on the Xbox 360, we made do with the Sega games, and one such example was Sega Superstars Tennis.
Now like I said in the previous entry, tennis games are a bit samey, but what sets this above the likes of Top Spin and Virtua Tennis is that it’s cartoony simplicity often made it a more enjoyable game to play.
Just like Monopoly Streets, Risk Factions brought a classic board game to our screens.
Apart from being a better board game in my opinion, Factions also added a nice twist to the tried and tested Risk formula, with tweaks to the gameplay and ways to win.
It also has an easy but fun single player mode too.
Well worth your time.
Though this is just an old game remade to look better and have character vocals, it still deserves its place in the list.
I don’t think I’d ever gone to the trouble to complete Monkey Island before I played it on the 360, but I enjoyed it.
Having said that, it’s not the best point and click adventure game out there, despite what shows like Charlie Brooker’s “How Video Games Changed The World” suggests.
Give me Day of the Tentacle any day.
Like I said in Part Six, as good as Trials HD is, there’s a far simpler version of the game that it a lot better.
And that is Stick Stunt Biker.
One of these games that you can play anywhere on your phone, for a quick 30 second blitz or for hours on end, Stick Stunt Biker is a lot of fun.
But it’s also frustrating. It can be difficult, and unlike Trials HD, there are no checkpoints; you mess up right before the finish line, you have to start all over again.
That just makes completing the tough levels all the more satisfying.
While Beautiful Katamari isn’t much of a departure from the original Japanese PS2 games, it still stands on its own merits.
Using only the left and right control sticks, your aim is essentially to roll up as many things in a ball as possible.
Now that might sound like a silly idea, but silly ideas are the basis for many of the best games ever made.
There’s just something wonderfully relaxing about starting off as a 1 inch ball and ending up with one so big that it engulfs the entire universe.
And it’s got a couple of superb pieces of incidental music too.
I had thought about not including Facebook games, but since my first experience with Words With Friends was using my phone, and since I’ve included other phone games on this list, it deserves to be here.
Taking Scrabble and making it portable so you can play online against friends anywhere on the globe using your phone, tablet or PC is ingenious.
The only problem with it is that people cheat.
And there’s no way of proving it.
So ultimately it just gets a bit tiresome.
Though this came out in 2011, I only recently got into it having downloaded it for free as part of my PS Plus membership.
This is what gaming should be, in my opinion.
Developers can spend so much time on making games look amazing, and so little time on making them enjoyable to play (*cough* GTA *cough*).
A throwback to simple-yet-challenging and charming gaming, it’s tough, but absorbing.
#58 – Halo Reach (Xbox 360, 2010)
This should have been the end of the story for the Spartan crew, but alas it wasn’t.
A tough, impressive looking single player game with what I thought was a satisfying conclusion; it did was many of the previous Halo games didn’t do, in that it added a bit of variety in location and enemies.
#57 – Bioshock (Xbox 360, 2007)
When it first came out, Bioshock felt like a real step forward in gaming graphics.
Moreover, it looked different; the setting and atmosphere had a real freshness about it.
And above and beyond that, as limited as the game was in play time, and though it had no replay value whatsoever, it was still a well told story with strong gaming mechanics.
If only they’d left it there…
While I don’t usually like grim-looking games, Arkham Asylum is an exception.
And indeed it’s an exceptional game on the whole, with varied gameplay and interesting and familiar enemies to face.
Writing about it reminds me that I need to play the sequel. One of these days…
And One That Doesn’t Make It…
BioShock Infinite (Xbox 360, 2013)
People loved it; it got top marks all over the internet and was touted as 2013’s Game of the Year.
Sure, it looked good, but it just wasn’t fun. It’s like they’d taken the original Bioshock, stripped most of the interesting stuff from it and lazily tried to extend the brand.
For me, the combat mechanics were dreadful, and it was one of these games that gave the impression that you had this amazing open world to travel through, but the reality of the situation was you were moving in exactly the direction they wanted you to.
Utterly boring and a waste of time.
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