For gamers, 2012 has been a big’un. With the Wii U, it’s marked the start of a whole new generation of consoles, but it’s also seen a glut of A grade games hit stores, both physical and digital. Join us as we look back at the ten best games of last year. Are there any we’re missing?
Assassin’s Creed 3
Ubisoft’s stealth franchise jumps to early America – and doesn’t skip a beat despite the change of scenery. This gripping adventure ratchets up the action even higher: we can’t wait to see what’s next.
It’s always a gamble for a studio to spend millions on a new game in a new setting, but it paid off big time here: stealthy dystopian adventure game Dishonored was the surprise hit of the year.
New Super Mario Bros U
Unquestionably the Wii U’s finest launch game. It may not pack any surprises, but Nintendo knows can spot when something that isn’t broken doesn’t need tampering with.
The first big non-Bungie Halo 4 game shocked fans and critics alike with its moving story, gameplay that harks back to the original, and perfectly balanced, addictive multiplayer. This is how you do a sequel.
Call of Duty: Black Ops 2
Yeah, yeah, Call of Duty is getting a bit same-ish these days. But this year’s story is superb, the multiplayer engaging, and with built in broadcasting tech so others can watch your kill streaks, it’s surprisingly innovative too.
It’s rare that a driving game really stands out: make-car-go-fast-press-button is a mechanic developers mastered years ago. But Horizon is worth your time because it takes things off the track: exploring the open world scenery on four wheels is fun like you’d never expect.
Max Payne 3
Max Payne’s been away for nearly a decade, but Rockstar put to rest any doubts that the series had gone stale in the meantime. This solid noire adventure is as gripping as it is brutally violent.
Mass Effect 3
We know, we know: lots of you didn’t like the ending to Mass Effect 3. But BioWare loves you guys so much, it changed it for you with some DLC. And there’s no faulting the gameplay, a superb mix of RPG and run-and-gun shooter.
Kid Icarus: Uprising
It may have been twenty years in the making, but the third Kid Icarus game more than made up for the wait with its flying combat, perfectly suited to the Nintendo 3DS’ control.
Far Cry 3
A latecomer, but the newly released Far Cry 3 deserves a spot on the list: the paradise island setting is lush – until the inhabitants try to kill you. After that, things simply don’t let up.
Have we missed any instant classics? Let us know what made your top 10 in the comments below!