We hope you guys are enjoying this as much as we are. It’s been a difficult process, making this list. Mostly, we’ve just been beating each other with Wiimotes and bowing down as Gavin made random demands. Remember – this top list isn’t about sales, metrics or scores; it’s about games that shaped the generation, or maybe just impressed us.
70 – Call of Duty: Black Ops (PC, Xbox 360, PS3, Wii)
With Call of Duty: Black Ops Treyarch decided to go to a darker side of war with their single player campaign that was all about the numbers. This was the first Call of Duty game that touched on the Cold War, MK Ultra and mind-control - and was a resounding success with over 25 million copies sold.
The multiplayer portion was widely acclaimed and ensured the Call of Duty franchise would continue to dominate this generation even after the recent Infinity Ward saga.
69 – From Dust (PC, Xbox 360, PS3)
There’s a good reason why strategy games stay away from consoles, and that’s because they usually fail miserably thanks to a design interface that makes controlling the world around you clumsy and awkward. From Dust bucked this trend however, getting the most out of consoles and PC and putting players in charge of mother nature herself.
Downright gorgeous and with a pace that was off the beaten path, the game was a breath of fresh air as players connected once again with the elements.
68 – Bioshock Infinite (PC, Xbox 360, PS3)
The long awaited sequel to Bioshock 2 is the polar opposite to the underwater city of Rapture. Infinite is set in the floating city of Columbia and is possibly one of the most beautiful settings ever seen in a video game.
You control Booker Dewitt, a disgraced Pinkerton Detective in mounting debt who is sent to Columbia to rescue Elizabeth, a young captive guarded by a giant robotic bird-like creature. The gameplay is similar to Bioshock 2 in that you have basic firearms and ‘vigours’ which are the plasmids equivalent of Columbia. They mix up the formula by having the ‘skyhook’ mechanic; a clawed, handheld device used to move quickly across mounted tracks sprawled throughout Columbia. If you’ve never played a Bioshock game, this one is more than worth your money.
67 – Batman Arkham City (PC, Xbox 360, PS3)
The sequel to the asylum, Batman Arkham City offered players a much bigger Batman experience. With an entire city to explore, players could spend hours gathering collectibles, exploring the dark underbelly of Gotham, or even climbing upside-down as Catwoman.
While not as tight an experience as Batman: Arkham Asylum, Arkham City gave players exactly what they’d asked for – more. With more bosses to battle, more puzzles to solve and trophies to find, there was a lot of love in Batman: Arkham City.
66 – Professor Layton Franchise (Nintendo DS, 3DS)
What makes Professor Layton so lovable? Is it the old-timey charm, the weird relationship with his apprentice, or the bizarre and hilarious characters that they encounter? Nah, it couldn’t be any of that – must just be the opportunity to solve hundreds of unique puzzles.
The Professor Layton series of handheld games offer puzzles ranging from ridiculously easy to mind-breaking-ly hard. Think outside the box, apply logic and prepare yourself to be surprised with this strangely lovable and addictive puzzle franchise.
65 – Saints Row Franchise (PC, Xbox 360, PS3)
Oh how far they have come. It’s a franchise that could’ve very easily been cast away as a mere GTA clone. In fact, it started as one, but as the series has progressed, Saint’s Row took on a life of its own.
Instead of going with a realistic approach to violence and crime, Saints Row tipped the entire concept on its head with crazy weapons, characters and objectives. The Saints Row franchise (especially Saints Row 3 and 4) took the crazy and ran with it, developing it own irreverent flavour. There’s nothing else that gives you the tools to digitally smash a guy’s face in with a giant purple dildo.
64 – Burnout Paradise (PC, Xbox 360, PS3)
If there was one arcade racer on the consoles that stood the test of time, it’s Burnout Paradise. Burnout Paradise is an open world, drift focused arcade racer with a unique bent on encouraging spectacular crashes.
Its easy to learn controls and mechanics provided a fast paced racer to play with friends both online and offline. It’s no wonder that people still dust it off to play it today – despite numerous excellent racers, no game has really filled its shoes.
63 – Hitman: Absolution (PC, Xbox 360, PS3)
Absolution hit the scene with mixed reviews. It was originally passed off as a reboot of a franchise to make it more accessible to the casual crowd. Fortunately, at its core, Absolution still encompasses the elements that makes Hitman appealing.
You play as Agent 47, a highly trained covert assassin on a mission to kill a rogue agent. The game is heavily stealth-based, and there are many ways to complete objectives through improvisation. The story beats and improved mechanics make it a great experience and a good entry point for people new to the series.
62 – Heavy Rain (PS3)
Not much of a game, but definitely one of the most important PS3 games in terms of storytelling. It tells the story of the Origami Killer, a serial murderer who takes young boys during the rainy season. The story revolves around 4 characters all involved with the killer in one way or another.
Heavy Rain has 4 playable protagonists with intertwining stories. Your actions in game will impact the ending greatly. Although the gameplay is limited mostly to quick time events, Heavy Rain still stands out as a landmark of videogame storytelling.
61 – EA Sports MMA (Xbox 360, PS3)
MMA is technically still a young sport, and the video game tie-ins even more so. The UFC Undisputed games may have had more licensed characters, arenas and brands than EA’s debut inside the octagon, but what that game lacked in official merchandising rights it more than made up for with a far more intuitive control scheme that was gutsy and fun for any skill level.
Down and dirty, strategic on the fisticuffs and more fun to play with friends, EA MMA was an underrated gem that went the distance.Button