Kim Wallace’s Top Five Games Of Last Generation

about X hours ago from

Storytelling has always been very important to me in games; it’s what keeps me hooked and immersed. I’ve often looked at the narrative as the great pay-off for all my hard work to complete a game, so it’s no surprise that the list below is games that told memorable tales.

One of the most exciting parts of video games is watching how storytelling has evolved. Who would have thought that when we started with merely two paddles and a dot on screen that we’d somehow find our way to full blown storytelling, featuring voice acting and important themes? Games are just getting started with where they can take narrative and I can’t wait to see what’s in store as more developers invent new mechanics.

Looking back on my favorite games from the past generation, I noticed a common trend. They all pushed storytelling forward, took risks, and were unique for video games. Some succeed more than others, but the following games left the strongest impact on me. They’re all great in their own right, but really pack a punch in the story department. 

Tim Turi's Top Five Games Of Last Generation

about X hours ago from

Unlike a lot of my fellow Game Informer editors, I had a very odd experience landing on my five favorite games of last generation. I opened of a blank Word document, listened closely to my gut, and jotted down the first five titles that came to mind. That was days ago. I've been busy with other projects since, but all the while I've been refreshing my memory by carefully parsing through tons of other lists ranking the games of last generation, examining my own game collection, and of course delving into the depths of my soul. When it came down to it, I agonized over my initial five choices for nothing. I nailed my top five games of the 360, PS3, and Wii era in one shot.

Kyle Hilliard's Top Five Games Of Last Generation

about X hours ago from

I’m sure many of our lists will feature broad open worlds and RPGs full of choices and alternate player-driven directions, but I have always been a fan of the more curated experience – the one that has been designed with a specific goal in mind that the player must accomplish. I love exploring open worlds and making decisions about my character, but when it comes to considering the best games of the last generation, I recall games with boundaries and direction where the designers knew exactly where it wanted the player to go and how and what they would be experiencing along the way.

5. Left 4 DeadLeft 4 Dead snuck up on me. I love Valve games and I was excited to play Left 4 Dead leading up to its release, but I prefer single-player experiences in general. I assumed Left 4 Dead would be a game I‘d play for a few days and have a good time, but would quickly abandon in favor of something with puzzles I could stare at for a few hours with no one waiting on me.

Instead it became a temporary obsession. We bought a second copy so my wife and I could play together on a pair of TVs placed side-by-side and we forced every person who entered our home to play with us. It’s the only game to ever inspire me to yell, “Get to the chopper!” in complete earnest, and in many ways it continues to be unlike anything I’ve ever played.

Mike Futter’s Top Five Games Of Last Generation

about X hours ago from

I’m throwing the rulebook out the window. Rather, I would if there were a rulebook. I can’t tell you my top five games of last generation, there are too many years and too many choices. So I decided to narrow things down just a bit.

I pondered the different ways I could parse hundreds of titles, and considered the best five pilot games for new franchises, standout reboots, and even a eulogy of titles that you can’t play as originally intended (alas, poor Chromehounds). What I landed on was my favorite five titles that have defied the most overwhelming force in all of gaming: sequels.

Each of these five titles is a standalone experience. The story begins and ends on the discs in that one box (at least for now).

Matthew Kato's Top Five Games Of Last Generation

about X hours ago from

I've been playing games for many years now, and I couldn't be more fond of the last console generation. It doesn't have the excitement of the new systems nor the romance of past golden eras, but when I look back on the last generation of gaming I feel like we've experienced a high point for the medium. These are my top five games that prove it.

5. BioShock

Immersion into BioShock's world isn't down to just the environments or the story, but how all its constituent components come together to create the world of Rapture. The gunplay is tight, the Plasmid choices add a tantalizing amount of customization to your character, and the thrills are paced nicely.

Ben Reeves' Top Five Games Of Last Generation

about X hours ago from

Looking back, this last console generation might have been the best time to be a gamer. The lineup of titles on the PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii provided some of my favorite gaming experiences to date. Here's a roundup of which titles top out that list.

5. Mass EffectAs a kid, my entertainment diet was built around Star Wars, Star Trek, and Transformers. I loved sci-fi, and I loved learning about our universe. During most of my fifth-grade classes, I would sketch alien moonscapes and daydream about the worlds beyond our sky. So when Mass Effect released, I wasn’t just excited to play it; I felt like my head was ready to explode with anticipation. Thankfully, BioWare didn’t disappoint. This sci-fi RPG seemed to let me go wherever I wanted in the universe and its story was more thrilling than 90 percent of the sci-fi movies and books I had read as a kid. I may never go to space, but I don’t need to because now I’ve lived that dream.

Jeff Marchiafava's Top Five Games Of Last Generation

about X hours ago from

In the interest of starting my list with an original introduction, I'm going to say that picking just five games out of an entire generation of awesome titles was super easy. I definitely didn't obsessively stare at my list of candidates and argue with myself like a crazy person for hours on end. Here are my perfect and infallible picks.

5. Left 4 DeadI've always been a big fan of zombie movies, but for many years, games starring the undead always fell short of their celluloid counterparts. Despite my ingrained skepticism, when I read my first preview of Left 4 Dead (long before I started working at GI or covering games), it was impossible not to get my hopes up. Could Valve finally deliver the zombie apocalypse I'd always wanted to play?

Daniel Tack's Top Five Games Of Last Generation

about X hours ago from

As the PC editor, picking my top 5 games of last generation goes a bit outside the console realm, allowing inclusion of PC titles released in the window of the lifetime of those systems. That said, there are some cross-platform selections on my list as well.

Portal was a lot more than an awesome puzzle game, it was a brilliant proof-of-concept that showed us that first-person puzzlers were not only a viable alternative to fast-paced FPS titles, but they could intrigue us with unique stories along the way too. While it’s easy to consider Portal 2 as the pick here for adding a layer of polish and the outspoken Cave Johnson, the first title was the one with all the impact.

4. League of Legends

Matt Miller’s Top Five Games Of Last Generation

about X hours ago from

I’m taking a slightly different tack here than some of my colleagues. In reality, all of the Game Informer editors play a healthy mix of big games like Mass Effect and Grand Theft Auto, and smaller games like Limbo and Flower. However, it’s easy for some of those smaller games to get lost in the shuffle, so I’m keeping my list focused completely on indie titles from last generation. These games were all important to me for the way they helped redefine my expectations for the games I play. Moreover, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend any of these five titles to any gamer eager to experience the indie scene, no matter when they released.

5. Castle Crashers

With its simple arcade sensibilities and addictive upgrade mechanics, Castle Crashers singlehandedly carved out a place for the old-school brawler on new-school platforms. A goofy sense of humor pervades the adventures of these multi-colored knights as they gleefully hack their way across the screen. Smart level designs, crazy bosses, and evocative art help it stand out and excel.