The Ninjabot

Best of Gaming 2012

Posted on December 29, 2012 at 1:02 pm by Stephen Janes

The year 2012 is quickly coming to a close and it’s that time where everybody reflects on what made this (soon to be previous) year so great. I have, here for you Geeks, the top five aspects of gaming for me. Now there are so many other things that I could mention about each entry or even go off my rocker and list the top fifty elements from this past year, but to make matters easy here are the top five aspects of gaming and how they will help define our future. You will notice that these are not in any particular order and that is not by accident. Each of these were equally important in their own right, which is why this is not a ‘top five’ list.

 The Walking Dead Game

The Walking Dead was hands down the best game of 2012

When Telltale’s The Walking Dead was originally released back in April, a lot of people were caught off guard by how well a point-and-click downloadable adventure performed on a console. With its episodic releases, The Walking Dead quickly went from surprisingly good to game of the year material with its conclusion about a month ago. Telltale proved that you didn’t need a huge budget or a large advertising campaign in order to do well; you just had to go back to the basics and let the fans take care of your product. I still, to this day, have never experienced a story quite like The Walking Dead and am overcome with emotions when I think about it. Although the game play wasn’t perfect, the story and the emotional drive were so well done that you were heavily invested in your characters and the decisions you made. You can’t go wrong with a game that is only five-dollars per episode and takes you on a two to three hour emotional rollercoaster each episode.

 

WiiU Doing Same Day Digital

WiiU Digital

Nintendo announced with the release of New Super Mario Bros. U that not only could you purchase the launch title in stores; you would also be able to purchase the game from the Nintendo eShop and download it at home. Many consumers have been waiting for the day where all games are only accessible through digital means and this is definitely the start of that movement. Although I personally like a physical copy of my games, the idea of being able to download games from home is a great addition, especially for AAA titles. Nintendo went the extra yard and also announced that they were going to make all future titles available in retail form or as a digital download on day one, which was great up until the WiiU hard drive capacity was officially announced months later. Still, this digital trend continued with Sony’s PS Vita as all games are also available digital and retail on day one, so hats off to Nintendo for starting the trend and possibly moving us in a digital direction.

 

DayZ

DayZ Promotional Poster

Many of you probably never played ARMA 2, which is a shame because it’s actually very entertaining. However, many of you probably have played DayZ, a fantastic zombie survival mod based on the ARMA 2 engine. DayZ was so well done that it was actually responsible for ARMA 2 becoming the best selling PC game and topping the charts for several weeks. Pretty impressive considering that ARMA 2 was actually three years old at this point and had not sold as well when it first came out. Many people claim DayZ was one of the most important things to happen to the PC in 2012 because it showed that modding was still a very big part of the community and that PC gaming was not dead after all. Many of those opinions changed with the release of WarZ, which will not be discussed on this best of list.

 

Playstation Plus

PS Plus

When I first bought a PS3, one of the features I really appreciated was the ability to have full access of online content without paying a dime. When Sony announced the Playstation Plus program a few years ago, I was skeptical about why they were changing their format all of a sudden. Thankfully, Playstation Plus was a supplemental feature that wasn’t necessary or required, just something you could invest in if you’d like. I took the plunge with their free month trial and I have to say it has been worth the money. In 2012 alone, I got the first two episodes of The Walking Dead for free, Bioshock 2 and Far Cry 2 for free, Resident Evil: Director’s Cut, Resident Evil 2, Resident Evil 3: Nemesis and Resident Evil: Code Veronica all for free and was invited to the LittleBigPlanet Karting and Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale beta’s. This is just a small sample size, as by my last count the Playstation Plus membership has saved me over three-hundred dollars this past year. It’s totally worth the forty-dollars a year membership and I’m excited for future deals in 2013. Also, the Playstation Plus service has been extended to the PS Vita, meaning you are accessible to even more deals.

 

Kickstarter

kickstarter-dark

Kickstarter has been doing great things in the world of indie gaming. For starters, there was FTL or Faster Than Light, which ended with over two-hundred thousand dollars while only requiring ten-thousand for funding. Then there was the Ouya, which could possibly change the gaming scene entirely with its mobile capabilities. Then we had the success story of Double Fine Adventure, which collected over three-million dollars in its campaign. Bottom line, Kickstarter is a great way to get your fans, the potential customer, to invest in your product and feel like they were a part of the process. I personally backed a few Kickstarter campaigns this year, including my friend’s web series that successfully shot and aired a full season. It’s a great avenue for those with a fantastic idea but no money to boot. I pulled a relatively small sample size for this article, but you get the idea on how Kickstarter will help fund games and other ideas that could never have seen the light of day before.

 

With good, there is always bad. Stay tuned for the worst of gaming.

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