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'Time' Announces Its Top Ten Video Games Of 2012

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#1 Muhammad Farrukh

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 10:36

Time Magazine has announced its choices for the best video games of 2012, and the list is surprisingly eclectic. But while all of them are great, we feel that some are more deserving than others. Here are all ten, with our reviews and some personal thoughts on some from the Side Mission staff.

10. Torchlight 2

Dan: Does making a game cheap make it great? Time's reasoning seems both a little suspect and a bit dismissive of a game that, yes, is very much like Diablo, but does stand out in other respects. I enjoyed Torchlight because it didn't feel guilted or bribed into playing. I played it because I wanted to… and I enjoyed the hell out of it, derivative or not.


9. Halo 4

Denny: It’s a bit surprising that Time doesn’t mention the multiplayer aspect of the first-person shooter. I agree that the campaign returns to the greatness of the original Halo, but it’s the addicting multiplayer that keeps me from putting the game down.

Rocco: I grabbed the first Halo a few years after its release (Xbox launched during my college years; couldn't afford it then). Saw the gaudy reviews, eventually dove in.
Holy ****.

I hadn't played a game that got feel as spot-on in years. The gunplay was just incredible, especially for the console space. I was hooked… on the game, the franchise, all of it.
Fast forward a decade or so and my anticipation for Halo 4 was high. Really high. And while I won't say 343 Industries surpassed those expectations, Halo 4 certainly lived up to them. Everything felt right, felt like Halo.

Which is great.


8. LittleBigPlanet Vita


7. The Last Story


6. Papo & Yo


5. Assassin's Creed III

Dan: The historical research in this game is superb, and the sandbox is a lot of fun to play in. Still, I'm not sure it's different enough from other games in the series in some respects to really make it Top Ten material, especially with the controls.

That said, the naval combat is superb and practically a game in itself, and there's just so much to do that it's easy to get lost for hours. Top Ten, maybe not, but great, absolutely


4. Dishonored

Dan: While Dishonored is superb, I have to disagree with the "sandbox" term. It's a linear level with dozens of solutions, and each level is exquisitely designed… but you can't go goofing around Dunwall for giggles. That said, you hardly miss it, and each level is so crammed with nooks and crannies that you'll spend hours just looting, forget actually beating the game


3. XCOM: Enemy Unknown

Rocco: Firaxis has been a favorite developer of the DeMaro household for a while now; Civ V remains one of my favorites from the past five years.

So you can imagine my excitement when word came out that Firaxis would be re-making / spiffing up the legendary XCOM formula.

What the company eventually produced is impressive; I describe the genre-bender as Valkyria Chronicles meets Fire Emblem meets the Civ franchise… in other words, it's the best of several highly-addictive worlds. And while XCOM: Enemy Unknown isn't as replayable as the CIv games, it more than stands on its own as one of the best titles of 2012 and a faithful hat tip to what many consider the greatest PC game of all time.

It's my Game of the Year.


2. Xenoblade Chronicles

Rocco: I'm only 10-15 hours into Xenoblade Chronicles, which is to say I've barely scratched its surface. But in that time, I've realized why so many publications have heaped so much praise upon it since hitting the Japanese marketplace in June of 2010.

Carrying a score of 92 in the critical aggregate, Xenoblade might well represent the peak of JRPG evolution, as we know the sub-genre.

Virtually everything in the game is streamlined… from the save system to the way questing is handled to the in-game traveling options, Monolith Soft has learned from the mistakes of other JRPG's and has given us the byproduct of that knowledge.

The game is complex, but rarely obtuse; detailed, but never at the expense of your time or patience.

In short, Xenoblade is, at the same time, deep and accessible. Combine that elegant design foundation with a solid narrative and fun battle system and you've got a JRPG that seems downright Darwinian in its execution.


1. Guild Wars 2

Denny: While playing Guild Wars 2, I didn’t experience quite the same level of magic that the folks at Time did. However, the MMO does deliver some great dynamic events that make Tyria feel like a living world. In that sense, the game does stand out this year.




#2 Sranshaft

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 10:54

Guild Wars 2 - top game of the 2012? Seriously Time?!

#3 TheLegendOfMart

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 11:02

lol I wouldn't rank AC3 so high, I've played and finished every game in the series so if anything I'm biased FOR it, but its a buggy, horrible mess of a game.

#4 Xahid

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 11:03

lol @ their game rating ...

#5 Nick H.

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 11:13

I think the only one I completely agree with is XCOM. Brilliant game, I'm glad my friend persuaded me to get it.

Actually, looking at the rest of the list I realise that I haven't played any of the other games. Although Dishonored and AC3 are on my to-do list.

#6 rageagainstmachine

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 11:23

Halo 4 should be alot closer to postion 1 IMO, too.

#7 Crisp

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 11:29

Halo 4 should be alot closer to postion 1 IMO, too.


Yeah, with Call of Duty 14.

#8 Vandalsquad

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 12:44

Yeah, with Call of Duty 14.


Ever played it?

#9 OP Muhammad Farrukh

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 13:22

FarCry 3 should've been on the list

#10 threetonesun

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 13:25

I'm not a fan of JRPGs and I still got hooked by Xenoblade Chronicles. Shame it had to come out on the Wii though.

#11 vetsanctified

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 13:29

No Mass Effect 3? Halo 'Im a great game if you're a frat boy' 4 it's in the list?

#12 vetDirtyLarry

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 13:30

I actually give them credit for having the list be so varied. I also see they are recognizing more artsy games, like Papa & Yo (which I really wanted to like, had a real interesting premise and inspiration, but a finished demo did not persuade me to purchase it). So yeah, I am sure it will not be the most popular Top 10 list, but I do give them credit for not doing the norm.

If you want the norm, watch the VGA's tonight on Spike, should be plenty of the norm on it.

#13 +Majesticmerc

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 13:34

I'm not a fan of JRPGs and I still got hooked by Xenoblade Chronicles. Shame it had to come out on the Wii though.


It probably missed the cutoff point for the article. That's the danger of doing a "Best of 2012" article before Christmas :p

No Mass Effect 3? Halo 'Im a great game if you're a frat boy' 4 it's in the list?


Yeah I was surprised about the lack of ME3. Maybe it was too controversial for the list, given the ending rage?

#14 vetsanctified

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 13:38

Yeah I was surprised about the lack of ME3. Maybe it was too controversial for the list, given the ending rage?


But that would be an irrational reaction. The ending was fixed and the content itself it's on par if not better than ME2.

#15 trag3dy

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 13:50

Maybe because ME3 is a boring game. Just a thought. ME1 is still the best of that series.

Besides that, what is the deal with the links? For starters they don't even work but if you go by the second part it takes you to gametrailers? What does this have to do with Time Magazine? No source is given.