So many games this month have surprised me, I’d be hard-pressed to think of everything. I wasn’t even aware two of my top three games this month existed until I played them! I finished Tomb Raider, one of my predicted top ten for this year, and left disappointed. There have been more than enough games to make up for that one minor misstep though. BioShock was my front-runner for game of the year, and it ended up doing nearly everything I wanted it to. It may not be perfect, but it’s one of the best games I’ve played this year. Let’s hope the rest of the year keeps it up as strong as these first three months!
What else, really, was going to be my favorite game this month? BioShock Infinite manages to build a world that I want to see everything in. Every minor detail is important, each small line of dialogue has some sort of basis in the fiction. Irrational Games have always been world builders, and by some act of divine power they’ve done it again, just as excellently as they’ve done before. I may not have enjoyed the actual gameplay in Infinite as much as I did in the original BioShock, but the scene to scene interactions with the world and its characters are some of the most outstandingly beautiful things I’ve ever seen in a game. Whereas Rapture was already a wreck by the time I got there, Columbia is an incredible, still functional, sight to see, even if some of the sights are so disturbing they make me want to burn the city to the ground. Hallelujah.
No, you don’t have to read that title again. Yes, this is that iOS game that kind of looks like it could be a flash game from ten years ago. I started Super Stickman Golf 2 unsure of what to expect. I saw the first game last year and wasn’t interested, but decided to give this a try after hearing all the buzz. I started playing a few levels, and eventually got pretty addicted to it. I liked the level designs, I like the charmingly aged art style, I liked the upgrades and hats and all that jazz. I liked the game, but it wasn’t until I tried the multiplayer that I loved it. Playing with up to 4 players on one golf course, you have an unlimited number of shots and no time limit to see who can score a hole first. It. Is. Amazing. With all bets off and no penalties for a bad shot other than the other guy possibly getting ahead of you, it’s some of the most hilarious fun I’ve had with a game since…ever. Just go download it right now, and thank me later. Get a friend or two in the same room and have the biggest laughs and most joy iOS can provide this side of Spaceteam.
After the bad taste that the original ending left in some of our mouths, a refresher was necessary to remind us about what we loved about Mass Effect in the first place. Mass Effect 3 had its share of problems beyond just that ending, it was on the whole, kind of a bummer. Everything was getting wrecked, friends were dying, and you didn’t feel like you had any time to just…chill. The Citadel DLC changes that right away from the second you start, and makes for one of the best missions in Mass Effect 3. Giving a fun, clever new antagonist and bringing all of your friends back into the fray, Citadel is basically a huge “thanks for playing” to fans, and is a fantastic way to send off one of the best trilogies in video games.
Ridiculous Fishing: Inventive and addicting, I sank quite a few hours into catching quite a few fish since its release.
Gears of War: Judgement: A really interesting new way to structure Gears campaign, with lots of arcadey goodness in every shootout.
Tomb Raider: A lot of interesting ideas spread a little too thin, but still worth a playthrough to see what a better sequel could bring.