With the end of the year quickly approaching, various gaming publications have started running their usual “Year in Review” type articles. One theme that’s been increasingly common in them is the claim that this is the Greatest Year in the History of gaming. Normally, I brush that sort of bombast aside, but a longtime reader (whom I respect greatly) also sent me a message over the weekend to the same effect, which gives it a bit more credibility with me. However, as I mentioned in my previous article, I’ve been too busy playing Rock Band to notice how great this year’s bounty has been.
Actually, that’s not entirely correct. The truth is, over the years, I’ve developed what I’d consider to be a pretty reliable B.S. filter that can usually cut through the fawning previews and feature articles on upcoming games and tell me which ones are genuinely worth my attention. And this year, not much managed to pique my interest. I was skeptical of a few highly touted games, namely Bioshock and Mass Effect, but there were even more that I completely dismissed right off the bat. A lot of these were sequels where I had already grown weary of the franchise (Orange Box, Call of Duty 4, Halo 3), while others just seemed like they were all flash and no substance (Kane & Lynch, Assassin’s Creed). When all was said and done, the only games that really sounded that great to me were Guitar Hero III and Rock Band. I swear, if my spam filter was as stringent as my B.S. filter, I’d never get an email about “Disco!unT C 1 A L I S quocosdydxx” again.
So I guess my questions are: Is this the best year in the history of gaming, or even a very good one? What’s your pick for Game of the Year? And have I finally become too jaded?