2012 Year End Link Bait: What We Hated
2012 is just about over, and we hated a lot of stuff. We also liked a lot of stuff, but nobody is going to click on a link to see other people acting all happy.
The things I liked least about gaming this year was an aspect of the bundle culture we now live in. I really wish that all bundles, when mailing their endless advertising, would simply issue a plain text e-mail with the names of the included games, their genres, the name of the developer and maybe a tiny synopsis. I can’t remember which bundle it was, but one recently in-lined a giant JPG and the rot13 forumula for dick pills.
Steam Greenlight is also a cheapskate implementation by a rich company, but Valve does do a lot of great things, so it doesn’t feel right to complain about them. They’ve managed to make a wonderful platform that should do a great job resisting whatever closed-shop nonsense Windows 8 seems to want to push forth.
The best thing I noticed was that computer pinball seems to really be taking off – sure, it will never replace the real thing, but it’s not necessarily trying to, either. And there were fewer games than ever trying to awkwardly bolt Windows Games for Live onto something. If Games for Windows Lives dies completely in 2013, that would be terrific.
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FABIO, the pre-eminent culture critic of Caltrops, writes:
League of Legends– The constant updating and additions qualify this for a 2012 release. For anyone not familiar with DotA games, they’re basically an online RTS team game of Marvel vs Capcom, and no one does it as polished or intuitively or asshatteryless than League of Legends. I’ve sunk over 1300 hours into this damn thing since late 2009. That would have been 1300 hours of FREE entertainment if I didn’t once shell out $5 for an outfit to replace my pirate’s pistols with candy canes.
Nothing stood at as the worst this year, but there was…
Xenoblade Chronicles was so instantly forgettable I didn’t even realize it had come out this year and that I owned it! I bought it full price on the universal praise it was getting, tried it for maybe an hour and was so bored I stopped and never picked it up again, content that those $60 were gone and I didn’t need to give it a second chance to make it worth it.
Holy shit is it trite and dull. I can only imagine the praise was due to weeaboos telling us how lucky we were that Japan almost didn’t port it, and the “Eternal Darkness” delusion that contemporary Nintendo owners suffer whenever their system gets a genre exclusive.
The Worst Writing Category
This was the year that Mass Effect 3 and Halo 4 were released! The winner would be a neck and neck tie of those two, along with Walking Dead and Diablo 3.
The Braid award for most undeserved indie cocksucking
I think it’s a testament to Braid that I still don’t trust any gushing indie praise to this day. I’m going to give this one to Limbo. Sure it was released 16 months ago, but I’m counting my grudge as one month for every impossible to spot instant death bear trap in the demo.
Best deserved Indie award
If I have to go by what I actually played, then FTL kept me entertained for a couple weeks. In my imagination though, Drox Operative is the yet to try winner.
Worst not even a sequel
The only thing keeping Orcs Must Die 2 from being “exactly the same, but with tits” is having a rear view the entire game.
Best Flash Game
Jerry Whorebach, whose transformation from cuddly “Tass Times” blobpet into a savage flurry of jutted chin and fists, won almost all of us over, writes the following:
The Culdcept Award for Monopoly meeting Magic: The Gathering
Quarrel is a cross between Risk and Scrabble in which you conquer territories on a board by making anagrams. At first I wasn’t enjoying it much because the turns are timed and I don’t spell well under pressure. Then I realized I could just pause the game to buy as much time as I needed. They make a token effort to discourage that sort of outside-the-box thinking by hiding the letters in your rack when the game is paused — nice try, Quarrel, too bad you didn’t count on me having a photographic memory for where I left my notepad. So not only is this game building my vocabulary, it’s also improving my penmanship.
Last always has the best Halloween costumes. Here’s how he viewed 2012:
Sleeping Dogs. 2012 was a bad year for PC gaming, so this wouldn’t normally be Game of the Year. However, it improved on the GTA formula in many ways and had a fresh new setting and it was goddamn gorgeous.
Mark of the Ninja. I had to deduct a point for the cartoony PA artstyle, but otherwise this game was a shitload of fun, replayable, and makes you feel like a fucking ninja!
I am Alive. Pretty boring and nonsensical. It is ugly as shit and the story/setting/dialogue/plot are fucking god-awful. Completely unbelievable, irrational, nonsensical, bullshit. In a game with maybe ten NPCs in it, you really need to rely on plotting. This plot is shit.
Best Deserved Indie Award
Hotline motherfucking Miami!
Best Flash Game
Conclave with a few buddies that live in different towns. Pretty satisfying dungeon crawl in bite-sized, asynchronous, turns.
Rafiki is generally our best poster. I don’t mean to hype him up, because part of what makes him so great is that he does not acknowledge that he is our best remaining poster.
Dark Souls (PC)
Dark Souls (PC) – Three and a half months later and there’s still not an official patch for, at minimum, increasing the resolution. A PhD student spent 3 weeks creating his patch, and 2 weeks and 6 days of that time he didn’t even have the game. The game is unplayable with a keyboard. I can’t shit on the quality of this port enough.
Diablo 3 – I played through up to Inferno on 2 characters only for lack of other co-op games to play, and I wish I hadn’t because it really just kind of sucks.
Auction House in Diablo 3 – Hey, let’s implement a random loot system to entice players with the prospect of scoring that rare and powerful item, then completely undermine it by just letting them buy and sell anything putting into sharper focus what a boring grind our dumb game is.
Runner-up: Real Money Auction House in Diablo 3. People that use this are the people that need their taxes raised. At least buy a boat or two chicks at once, instead of spending money on a fucking random number generator.
I will never stop imitating the wheezy overacting of Cain.
Dragon’s Dogma – This also wins for “Best Game That Needs a Sequel,” “Best Game That Needs Co-op,” and “Game I Can’t Load Into Fast Enough Before the Title Music Turns Fruity.”
Best Game I Agree With Last About
Mark of the Ninja – I guess this also wins for best indie game.
Ten years ago, Entropy Stew coded our delicious, purple forum. I’m not sure why he hasn’t activated a “kill switch” on it yet, but what he has done is be disappointed by a number of 2012 games.
League of Legends, since that has mainly been what I play.
Dragon’s Dogma. Fantastic mix of Demon’s Souls and a bunch of other shit.
Worst, Most Overrated
Diablo 3. I played halfway into Nightmare and could not stomach anymore. Torchlight 1 entertained me about 100x more than this shit.
I Really Need to Log Out of League of Legends And Finish This Game
I Really Need to Log Out of League of Legends And Buy This Game
Solid State Disks in general
Any Corsair keyboard with Cherry MX Red keys
Corsair H100 giant ass self-contained water-cooled heat sink. I have a stable 900mhz overclock on my hot-as-the-sun original model i7 920 at the medium pump setting.
Clojure. It’s Lisp that doesn’t suck.