Thursday, January 04, 2007

Games of 2006

I somehow managed to play a good amount of games last year. Still, there are a number of games I couldn’t find time for one reason or another. For what it’s worth, my humble list ranked in no particular order (although I will say Elite Beat Agents is my game of the year followed closely by Okami).

2006 favorites
Elite Beat Agents (DS)
New Super Mario Bros (DS)
Okami (PS2)
Dead Rising (Xbox 360)
Brain Age (DS)
Gears of War (Xbox 360)
Rainbow Six Vegas (Xbox 360)
NBA 2K7 (Xbox 360)
LotR: Battle for Middle Earth II (Xbox 360)

Games I finished in 2006, but released at other times
Killer 7 (GC)
Shadow of the Colossus (PS2)
Metroid Zero Mission (GBA)
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Games that may have made my tops list if I had played them, but have a chance at making next year’s list
Elder Scrolls IV (Xbox 360)
Yakuza (PS2)
Final Fantasy XII (PS2)
Metal Gear Portable Ops (PSP)
Castlevania Portrait of Ruin (DS)
Zelda Twilight Princess (Wii)

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The most pleasant surprise of the year was easily Dead Rising. It certainly had its flaws, but man did I enjoy every minute I played. It looked great, had a ton of replay value, featured some decent voice acting to go along with the zany story, and had some inventive achievement points that were fun to do. From what I’ve heard, it sold pretty well, so I’m psyched to see what they do for a follow-up.

January 2007 outlook
I shouldn’t be paying attention to January releases with the backlog of titles that cry for attention, but it’s hard. Leading off things is Lost Planet, which keeps looking better and better each time I see new footage. Wario Ware Smooth Moves is a must though. Although I will spend a lot of time with it, it’s spread out in little chunks so it’s okay to grab now. Hotel Dusk for the DS will eventually get purchased, but no rush at all on that one. Winning Eleven 2007 for 360 is intriguing, although this version still doesn’t feel like it takes advantage of the advanced hardware it’s on. I’ve been keeping an eye on Rogue Galaxy as well, but I would squeeze in FF XII before this though.
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My craving for Twilight Princess, which I’ve managed to suppress for the past month and a half only because I’ve been insanely busy, has been raging out of control lately. If I don’t start by this weekend, I may explode.


piyo said...

I thought DoAXB would be up there because of how much time you spent on it. Now we know what is the chaff.

And if you like Elite Beat Agents, I really have to recommend Rhythm Tengoku for gameplay. (If you clear the stages you get feedback and nick-naks in Japanese, so maybe it would be better to wait for a translation? But you're not playing it for the ends, you're playing it for the means.)

Wataru Maruyama said...

When I was in Japan earlier this year, I searched every store I could for Rhythm Tengoku and came up empty. Sold out! I'll eventually order it online from an importer, but I was hoping it would get picked up for US release. It looks very unlikely now since so much time has passed. I played it briefly at work and it was awesome!

Yeah DOAX2 was just ok. Even though I played it a lot, I just could not put it in my year’s best because ultimately it didn't deserve it. Same with my bizarre fascination with Rumble Roses XX. Another deeply flawed game I spent too much time on and can't recommend.