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Top 10 Games Of 2012

As we enter 2013, it’s time to look back at the games which made 2012 all the more worthy to live through. Personally though, the feeling that 2011 gave us much bigger names who overshadowed the offerings of last year still seem to swell up while running through the titles of last year, but that maybe just me raving.

So, here are the top 10 games we think that surprised us all (in a good way) in 2012:

10. Mark of the Ninja

  • Developer: Klei Entertainment
  • Publisher: Microsoft Studios
  • Platforms: Xbox 360 and PC
  • Genres: Action, Stealth, Side-Scroller

Mark of the Ninja is one game of 2012 that surprised me greatly –  to an extent that I wonder if there actually was a flippin’ ninja on the development team. The title reeks refinement and was a breath of fresh air for me in the stealth genre.

Regardless of whether you choose to go in for the kills or sneak by to escape any bloodshed, either way is enjoyable. Armed with intense gameplay, clever level design, innovative use of the environment, and awesome animations, future games in the stealth genre will have to look back at Klei’s work and learn a thing or two.

09. The Walking Dead

  • Developer: Telltale Games
  • Publisher: Telltale Games
  • Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360, PC, Mac, iOS
  • Genre: Role-Playing

Telltale Games have done justice to their studio’s name by giving us an emotional roller coaster tale comprising of scares, tensions, friendships and consequences of our decisions.

A well-thought-out script takes you on a grand journey with moments that will shock even the most hard-core of gamers. Yes, manly tears will be shed. For once a zombie game will help you realize that your survival is not of the utmost importance.

07. Persona 4 Golden

  • Developer: Atlus USA
  • Publisher: Atlus USA
  • Platform: PS VITA
  • Genre: Role-Playing

A game which the PS Vita desperately needed, a true testament of the incredible JRPG design that Persona 4 possess that even though its a port, Atlus has packed it with so much of extra content that placing the game in the list is a must.

An occult infused murder mystery; the perfect turn based battle system, new story elements, social links, and some of the most memorable characters made Persona 4 Golden one of the must-play games of 2012.

06. Xenoblade Chronicles

  • Developer: Monolith Soft
  • Publisher: Nintendo
  • Platform: Wii
  • Genre: Action Role-Playing

The perception that JRPGs had become redundant was smashed by Xenoblade Chronicles. In a year which saw many great RPGs, it was Xenoblade that made the most splash with it fantastic melding of Eastern and Western RPG designs.

With a solid sci-fi plot and characters that defy clich; You have all the necessary ingredients for one of the best JRPGS ever made, let alone with generation!

05. Borderlands 2

  • Developer: Gearbox Software
  • Publisher: 2K Games
  • Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360 and PC
  • Genres: First-Person-Shooter, Action Role-Playing

Gearbox Software’s sequel has succeeded in blowing away the first Borderlands to dust in every way there is. One can only give so much credit to the developers for creating a rich environment which has been carefully detailed to give players an achingly beautiful world to explore through.

The RPG elements are not just for show either. Character customizations go deep and is well acknowledged by a compelling story that’s full of memorable characters, hilarious dialogues and tons of Easter eggs.

04. XCOM: Enemy Unknown

  • Developer: Firaxis Games
  • Publisher: 2K Games
  • Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360 and PC
  • Genre: Turn-Based-Strategy

XCOM Enemy Unknown was among the biggest surprises of 2012. Even with the low budget, developer’s passion for the franchise to shine made it an enjoyable take on action RTS and put it in the shoes of big-budget games Halo 4 and Assassin’s Creed 3. Although, it lacked the complexities of the original games, fans of the franchise will definitely appreciate the developer’s effort.

03. Journey

  • Developer: ThatGameCompany
  • Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
  • Platform: PS3
  • Genre: Adventure

It’s amazing as to how nameless characters with no ability to speak can still manage to give us one of the most emotional gaming experiences of this generation.

The script, the musical scores, the visuals, the unique co-op aspect; it all works together to give you a beautiful masterpiece.

02. Far Cry 3

  • Developer: Ubisoft
  • Publisher: Ubisoft
  • Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360 and PC
  • Genre: First-Person-Shooter

The previous Far Cry 2 title was good but did it have the same impact as that of the first title? Not at all. With Far Cry 3 Ubisoft ditched the more strenuous and monotonous gameplay of Far Cry 2 and gave us an incredible tropical open world that captivates players with an unpredictable, yet amazing setting and a dark story line that goes well with memorable characters.

At the very core, the game adopts the same formula used by many first-person-shooters out there, but Far Cry 3 does all of that so much better. One can only commend on Ubisoft on creating a world where no amount of time invested is too much.

01. Dishonored

  • Developer: Arkane Studios
  • Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
  • Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360 and PC
  • Genres: Action-Adventure, Stealth

Dishonored in itself is not something new. It’s a fresh IP on the market yes, but it borrows heavily from other popular franchises. What makes it stand out though is how smoothly it merges every borrowed aspect into one neat bundle, I like to call it perfection.

The steam-punk theme is rich in details, and environments are to die for. Dunwall provides an unmatched setting for exploration where even the newly released Assassin’s Creed 3 fails to deliver. It’s a world worth exploring, and it’s entirely up to the players on how they wish to deal with every situation.

Need to infiltrate a mansion? How about you climb over the rooftops and discover an open window? or pickpocket a key to gain entrance from the back? Or maybe discover a sewer line that will lead you right into the cellar? or how about possessing a rat and gaining access through a crack in the wall? Or notice the guard’s patrol routine and sneak past them? Or take time out to listen to their conversations to learn of access codes and hints that will further help you? if not, then you can always kill your way through the front door.

As I said the amount of freedom given is ridiculous and it all depends on what you come across while exploring. Alongside that the game also offers you many creative ways to dispatch enemies.

For a stealth game, it gives you abundant ways to spill blood. My favorite would have to be summoning a horde of rats to chew people up.

Dishonored is a treasure box, and it proves that you don’t need a popular brand to back up your game. A good game will always have everyone’s attention.

Honorable Mentions (in no specific order)

  • Call of Duty: Black Ops 2
  • Guild Wars 2
  • Sleeping Dogs
  • Torchlight II

Don’t forget to share your best picks from 2012 by commenting below!