For all intents and purposes, the launch of the Xbox One at midnight will signal the end of this console generation. And it was packed with watershed moments and iconic games.
Everyone’s been reminiscing about the past generation over the last few weeks, and it’s been no different here at the studio. So we decided that today we’d all write about some of the games we enjoyed most from the days of the PS3, Xbox 360, and Nintendo Wii.
Feel free to play the song below to accentuate the material.
Batman: Arkham Asylum
I’m a huge fan of Batman and especially the old animated series. Written by Paul Dini with a lot of the original voice cast? Amazing. Combined with great gameplay? Mind blowing.
Tomb Raider Reboot
Although I have enjoyed most of the Tomb Raider games, the new reboot did just about everything right and is now my favourite of the series. Bow and Arrow FTW!
The Walking Dead
As an old school gamer, I used to love story based adventure games like Day of the Tentacle, The Longest Journey and Grim Fandango. It’s great to see that Telltale is bringing them back and that there is a mainstream market for them. I’m sure that The Walking Dead is resurrection of a genre that people keep saying is “dead.” How appropriate.
Dance Central for Xbox. Besides the very casual mobile games I play to pass time, I generally like musically driven “fun for the whole group” console games like Rock Band. In fact, I think we got the Xbox because we couldn’t wait to play this fun dancing game again. Warning — it will get Lady Gaga stuck in your head!
I have slowly drifted away from console games over the years but one game stands out in my mind: Just Dance! Particularly Just Dance 2. My wife and I have spent many hours flailing our arms and legs to this game. It even doubles as a great work out! Although holding a Wiimote while you dance is a bit awkward, you get used to it. The game becomes even more fun and hilarious when there’s a big crowd and you can get 4 people playing at the same time for every song. Everyone usually gets really into it and has a great time.
No More Heroes for the Wii, because at a time when the Wii was saturated with cute minigame collections, it was so edgy and really appeased the hardcore gamer inside me. Since I didn’t have an Xbox 360 or a PS3, I didn’t have a chance to really get into the RPGs or the FPS titles that the generation had been known for, and I had finally grown tired of destroying the computer in Wii Tennis. With its cast of crazy characters and mature content, No More Heroes gave me hours of laughter, tears (of joy), and “did they just do that” moments.
Super Mario Galaxy
I don’t think I have ever smiled more at a game, ever. The level design was so spot-on, the space motif was inspired, the platforming was amazing, the environments were wonderful, and the music! Galaxy and Galaxy 2 will remain two of my favourite games of all-time, let alone from this console generation.
I’ll never forget the experience of descending into Rapture for the first time — Bioshock was the first game that made me realize how much potential the medium had to convey meaningful messages, and I think we’ve moved more and more in that direction since then, thanks to its influence. Sidebar: my family, none of which are gamers, watched me play Bioshock for three straight hours after I bought it. Never had that happen before or since.
I can’t pick a single game out of this list, but being able to play Bastion, Rogue Legacy, Braid, Limbo, World of Goo, Mark of the Ninja, Guacamelee, and others, along with seeing so many other gamers enjoy these titles as well, was fantastic. The rise in indie popularity has made a huge impact on the gaming landscape, as it’s opened up development opportunities for so many studios (including us!) and encouraged more risk-taking in game design. This will only lead to better and more diverse games in the next few years and I’m really excited to see what’s next.