#4 – Borderlands 2
- Developer: Gearbox Software
- Publisher: 2K Games
- NA Release Date: September 18, 2012
- Read WGTC’s full Borderlands 2 review
Chaz Neeler – Hey you! Do you like guns? Explosions? Piles upon piles of shiny loot packed to the brim with even bigger guns capable of more explosions? Then you really have no excuse to not have played Borderlands 2 yet.
The definitive co-op experience of the year, Borderlands 2 is the rare sequel that fixes all the faults of the original while improving the product on the whole. While the gunplay and exploration is certainly the primary focus, we were also treated to a surprisingly detailed story capable of bringing a smile to even the most cynical of neck beards. Sure, the humor was mostly glorified fart jokes, but they were expertly tongue-in-cheek and never once managed to fall flat. The characters were memorable, full of personality, and never failed to entertain.
Add in the addictive loot system where you are always just a chest away from having a new toy completely capable of blowing your current load-out away, the four player drop-in/drop-out co-op, and the absolutely insane firefights you’re guaranteed to find yourself caught in, and you’ve got a perfect mix for one of the most addictive games of the year.
#3 – Dishonored
- Developer: Arkane Studios
- Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
- NA Release Date: October 9, 2012
- Read WGTC’s full Dishonored review
Chad Goodmurphy – Mixing first-person shooting and swordplay with magical abilities and blink of the eye teleporting, Dishonored delivered one of 2012’s most memorable and replayable campaigns. As a result, Arkane Studios’ rich and creative stealth-action assassination game has appeared in multiple Game of the Year conversations, and for good reason. After all, its addictive and incredibly entertaining trial and error gameplay has set a quality-based precedent for those that follow.
At a time where multiplayer is king and annual follow-ups to best-selling titles predominantly reign supreme atop industry sales charts, it was nice to see a new intellectual property make waves. Of course, Dishonored’s success is even more impressive considering its lack of competitive content, helping to prove that not all successful games require multiplayer modes. Hopefully the industry’s creative minds will take note of that fact, leading to less tacked on and uninteresting attempts.
Frankly speaking, those who’ve yet to pick up and play through Dishonored are missing out on a masterpiece of interactive proportions. Rarely do we ever receive video games that work on as many levels as this one does, walking a gameplay tightrope that presents multiple avenues for players to venture down. Behind all of that lies a moral question relating to whether one would prefer to be a ghost who avoids unnecessary murder, or a ruthless assassin who is willing to shed blood whenever the need arises.
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