GregHorrorShow Game Awards 2010

Well it’s that time of year again and 2010 has seen some immense games roll around – as well as continued support via DLC for some of 2009 biggest titles.

Sadly I didn’t have time to play every game that was released so if I’ve missed anything worth checking out shout me in the comments and if it’s not already in my ‘to play’ pile I’ll get it added.

Right, let’s go!

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BEST GAME INNOVATION

WINNER: Destruction 2.0 (Battlefield Bad Company 2)

This was a tough one to call this year but I definitely think Destruction 2.0 is something that has helped put Battlefield head and shoulders above most other shooters out there. Enemy hiding in a house? Just blow the wall up in front of them and it’ll leave a nice big hole to shoot them through. Or just blow the building up completely and have it crush them to death.

RUNNERS UP:

Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood (Online Assassination Multiplayer)

Modnation Racers (Easy Track Creation)

Playstation Move

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BEST DLC (CONTENT)

WINNER: Undead Nightmare (Red Dead Redemption)

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No question of the winner here – with around 6 hours of single player and the fantastic Undead Overrun & Land Grab online modes, Undead Nightmare packs a lot of bang for your buck. This is one of the more comprehensive DLC packs out there and if you liked Red Dead Redemption then this is a must have. Props to Uncharted and Battlefield though – two strong modes added there but Undead takes this one.

RUNNERS UP:

Heavy Rain: The Taxidermist

Uncharted 2 Seige

Battlefield: Onslaught

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DOWNLOADABLE GAME OF THE YEAR

WINNER: Dead Nation

I honestly didn’t see anything taking this award away from the excellent Joe Danger and then Housemarque’s Dead Nation arrived at the beginning of December. Dripping in HD visuals comes a twin stick shooter that makes you think about your every move. When to use the SMG and how much Shotgun ammo to conserve become regular questions. Your score gets added to total score for your country and you can keep a tab on which country is the best at fighting the Zombie invasion. Very cool indeed.

RUNNERS UP:

Joe Danger

Shank

Scott Pilgrim Vs The World

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MOST ANTICIPATED GAME OF 2011

WINNER: Killzone 3

Wow, this was a tough call – it had to be Killzone 3 or Uncharted 3. I’m sure Uncharted 3 will be awesome but having played Killzone 3 I can’t wait for this to arrive in February. Continuing the story from the second game and adding substantially to the multiplayer, I think this could be a game of the year contender.

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BEST GAME TRAILER

WINNER: L.A Noire

The standard of trailers has been so high this year I’ve decided to pop the runners up on here as well for you to have a look at. L.A Noire takes the crown though and man, those Rockstar guys know how to make a trailer! Another contender for most anticipated, L.A Noire sees you take on the role of Cole Phelps, a detective in 1940’s America. Great stuff and the trailer really captures that feeling of the time.

RUNNERS UP:

Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood

Spec Ops The Line

Battlefield: Bad Company 2 – Vietnam

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PSP GAME OF THE YEAR

WINNER: Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker

Unfortunately I haven’t had a chance to pick up God Of War: Ghost Of Sparta yet so that hasn’t made the cut. I’m sure it would’ve been a close call regardless as Metal Gear also oozes quality and is such a deep game that there is always something different to do. Whether it’s going on missions or recruiting more soldiers for your army, Peace Walker will keep you entertained for hours. My play through clocked in at 16 hrs, which puts a fair few PS3 titles to shame.

RUNNER UP:

Half Minute Hero

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BEST SPORTS GAME

WINNER: FIFA 11

FIFA 11 is more of a refinement than anything else but it’s amazing the difference the changes make. While FIFA continues to dominate it’s interesting that PES gets a nomination this year – it shows that the series has made great strides this year to try and close the gap.

RUNNERS UP:

Formula 1 2010

Modnation Racers

Pro Evolution Soccer 2011

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BEST GRAPHICS

WINNER: Heavy Rain

No doubt on this one as Quantic Dream’s stunning thriller has some of the best motion capture and facial animation ever seen in a game. Whether it was evading masked men as Madison, talking down a robber in a shop with Shelby or shouting ‘JASON!’ repeatedly in a mall as Ethan, Heavy Rain looked gorgeous. Gran Turismo 5 certainly deserves a heads up in this category as when it all comes together it looks stunning however Heavy Rain was far more consistent.

RUNNERS UP:

God Of War 3

Red Dead Redemption

Gran Turismo 5

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BEST STORYLINE

WINNER: Red Dead Redemption

Unexpected. Not a word you’ll often type when talking about the story of a game but that’s what you get with Red Dead. John Marston’s story of gunslinger gone good who is brought in by the government against his will to track down his old gang trundles along at a pace and has plenty of stand out moments but it’s the final third of the game that stands out as some of the best I’ve played in a game. Not to mention the ending, which is one of the most impressive I’ve ever experienced in a game. Genius. ๐Ÿ˜Ž

RUNNERS UP:

God of War III

Mafia II

Heavy Rain

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BEST SOUNDTRACK (SCORE)

WINNER: God Of War III

The final part of Kratos’ epic trilogy hit PS3 owners with everything it had back in March and as usual Gerard K Marino’s score didn’t disappoint. Dipping and soaring in the right places this was the perfect accompaniment to the on screen carnage. The score really does push the story on and is definitely well suited to Kratos’ character.

RUNNERS UP:

Heavy Rain

Red Dead Redemption

Bioshock 2

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BEST SOUNDTRACK (LICENSED)

WINNER: Mafia II

The music in Mafia II is a huge part of what makes you feel like you are actually back in that era. I remember the first car I got into had “At The Hop” by Danny and The Juniors playing. It was one of the coolest things I’d had happen in a game for ages. A wonderful selection of old tracks that are well worth checking out in their own right but that combined with gameplay help make for a memorable experience.

RUNNERS UP:

Bioshock 2

FIFA 11

Call Of Duty: Black Ops

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BEST VOICE ACTING

WINNER: Red Dead Redemption

Rockstar usually deliver on the voice front with the GTA titles and Red Dead Redemption certainly doesn’t disappoint. Every character feels well rounded and has a voice to suit them perfectly. Even the supporting cast: Bonnie McFarland, Seth, Irish and, of course, West Dickens. This was a strong category this year with Mafia II in particular impressing but with such strength in depth it has to be Red Dead Redemption.

RUNNERS UP:

God Of War III

Mafia II

Heavy Rain

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SINGLE PLAYER GAME OF THE YEAR

WINNER: Red Dead Redemption

Red Dead Redemption tells a well crafted story in a beautifully rendered environment. There is so much to do and see that I still don’t feel like I have fully explored the world of the wild west. Rockstar have created a varied and expansive playground with enough going on to keep even the most hardcore of gamers entertained for hours and hours.

RUNNERS UP:

Heavy Rain

Mafia II

Alpha Protocol

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MULTIPLAYER GAME OF THE YEAR

WINNER: Battlefield: Bad Company 2

It was nice for me personally that my most anticipated game of 2010 lived up to expectations and Battlefield: Bad Company 2 nailed team based multiplayer like no other game I’ve ever played. The sense of satisfaction at winning a tense round of Rush and the feeling of being part of a bigger team is hard to beat. With the upcoming Vietnam expansion pack this game will only get better and better.

RUNNERS UP:

Modnation Racers

Red Dead Redemption

Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood

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GAME OF THE YEAR

WINNER: Red Dead Redemption

There could really only be one choice this year, with Rockstar’s Western epic taking the title of Game Of The Year. With a brilliant single player campaign and an ever improving multiplayer mode, Red Dead Redemption is a title that will keep you entertained and provide you with plenty of value for money. Battlefield: Bad Company 2 comes a close second as that has been my most played multiplayer title but overall Red Dead pips it.

RUNNERS UP:

Battlefield: Bad Company 2

Heavy Rain

Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood

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So there we go. Another year of gaming done and dusted with Red Dead Redemption taking home an unprecedented FIVE awards!

Some great games didn’t even make the nominations – that’s how tough it’s been to make decisions.

The likes of MAG, Bayonetta, Just Cause 2 and Vanquish unfortunately didn’t make the grade but goes to show how strong the line up of game releases has been in 2010.

So what games would you guys have given awards this year?

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Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker – Review (PSP)

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Peace Walker is set in 1974 in Central America with Naked Snake returning – this time running a mercenary group called the Militaires Sans Frontiรจres (MSF).

It’s a similar scenario story-wise, track down the latest Metal Gear iteration and destroy it before the bad guys have a chance to launch a nuclear attack.

You can recruit enemy soldiers and volunteers to help in the ‘fight’ and apart from coming on actual missions with you, they can also research new weapons/items or be sent on covert ops of their own to earn you cash.

The control system has been revamped from Portable Ops and it’s definitely an improvement but the sooner a PSP arrives with two analogue sticks the better – Peace Walker is around the 15 hour mark in length and there is only so much PSP Claw one man can take ๐Ÿ™‚

Gameplay-wise there are options for both stealth and direct action, though stealth will almost always see you through sections quicker because no back up arrives!

One new addition is the Fulton Recovery System, which is most welcome. In previous titles to recruit enemy soldiers you’d need to physically drag their unconscious bodies back to a truck at the beginning of the level and dump them in there.

While realistic it meant if you wanted to recruit you’d spent ages dragging each soldier back. Now you attach them to the Fulton, which inflates and carries them up into the sky from whatever position they are in. Totally unrealistic but for once an instance where that is completely cool with me. ๐Ÿ˜†

Peace Walker isn’t without it’s flaws though. Some of the boss battles were ridiculously lengthy and occasionally the controls did get in the way of the experience. The AI on some of the enemies was pretty questionable – although the same could be said of many Metal Gear titles.

Graphically I’d say this is above PS2 quality, though without viewing them side by side I suppose it’s tough to judge properly.

As I mentioned above Peace Walker is a full game, with a run time that would put plenty of Playstation 3 titles to shame. The story is as convoluted as ever, especially with Hideo Kojima at the helm, but that is part of the Metal Gear charm for me.

If you like Metal Gear or are just looking for a meaty game to get stuck into on your PSP then Peace Walker could be for you. Despite it’s flaws this is one of the most impressive feats ever seen on the PSP.

Rating: 9/10

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MOST WANTED 2010 (PART TWO)

So here we are with the second part of what’s upcoming this year. You can find Part One HERE if you want to check it out.

As you can tell it’s a big year for gaming with plenty of great release coming. I’m sure there will be more to add as we hit the E3 expo in June as well.

AGENT

Release: Late 2010

We don’t know much about Agent, other than it’s from the makers of GTA, is a PS3 exclusive (for now) and that it is a spy thriller set during the Cold War. Sounds like a win to me and the Rockstar guys usually come up trumps.

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FALLOUT: NEW VEGAS

Release: Winter 2010

Apparently it’s NOT Fallout 4 but the story continues elements from Fallout 3 and Fallout 2. Set in a desolate Vegas – not hit during the nuclear war but certainly affected by it – little is known of the story or characters at this stage. I’m still making my way through the DLC for the third game, is it too soon for a new Fallout game? Should be excellent regardless.

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DEUS EX 3

Release: TBC 2010

A prequel to the superb original title, Deus Ex 3 looks to update the control/camera system and generally tweak the game into the 21st Century. Cyborg style upgrades will be available as you RPG (RolePlayingGame rather than RocketPropelledGrenade, though the latter may be an option) your way to the truth. It’s been a while since the last game so let’s hope this one lives up to the hype.

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L.A NOIRE

Release: September 2010

Things seem to have got messy during development of this game over the last few years but it appears to be back on track now. It may not be a PS3 exclusive anymore but I still love the look of this and am excited to see which direction they take it in. I’d love to play as a gumshoe in a Philip Marlowe style story ๐Ÿ˜Ž

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METAL GEAR SOLID: PEACE WALKER (PSP)

Release: May 2010

Set after Metal Gear 3 and Metal Gear Portable Ops, Peace Walker takes you on a trip to Costa Rica to fight off an unknown military force who are trying to stage a coup. Having played the demo this is up there graphically for a PSP title and I can’t wait to take Snake back into the battlefield.

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RED FACTION: GUERRILLA 2

Release: TBC 2010

I really enjoyed the complete destruction of the first Red Faction: Guerrilla game, which was a departure for the series as it moved from a FPS to a 3rd person viewpoint. The follow up was literally announced a week or two ago so not even a picture so far – but definitely one to watch out for.

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RESIDENT EVIL PORTABLE (PSP)

Release: TBC 2010

The creators say it’s a ‘different’ experience to usual Resident Evil games and we’ve seen nothing on the game so far. Portable could be a disaster but on the other hand if they find a great balance between new style and old style, it could be a fantastic game. Resi Evil 5 wasn’t amazing but was decent enough so hopefully they can pull this off.

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SPEC OPS: THE LINE

Release: Winter 2010

I was initially sceptical of the footage shown for this game as I thought maybe the use of sand was just a gimmick but a positive response from the gaming press that have actually played it have put this in the ‘keep an eye on category.’ Apparently using sand to trap your enemies has never been so much fun ๐Ÿ™‚

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INFAMOUS 2 (Rumoured)

Release: Winter 2010 (Unconfirmed)

The story of Cole McGrath took a lot of people by surprise – especially those expecting Activision’s ‘Prototype’ to be the better game (great game but pipped by Infamous). Lots of rumours flying around that a follow up may be released this year, just 18 months after the original game. Hopefully they will continue to build on the excellent first game.

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MEDAL OF HONOR

Release: Winter 2010

Medal Of Honor used to be a standard annual entry on the games calendar but disappeared in recent years. The WW2 formula looked increasingly tired as the versions were released. Now EA are bringing their FPS back and bang up to date – set in Afganistan this could be a great title.

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BRINK

Release: Winter 2010

Another FPS but one with a difference or two. Firstly the ability to create your own avatar and secondly the ability to hold a button while moving towards an object that means the game will intuitively vault, jump or slide under whatever you’re looking at. Could be a great innovation or a hinderence, depending on how it’s implemented. Should be fun either way.

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MAFIA II

Release: Summer 2010

Hopefully this game will live it to the expectation for it – several hands on previews I’ve read have really talked the game up, in terms of gameplay and graphics. Title says it all, obviously the game is full of mob-based shenanigans.

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THE LAST GUARDIAN

Release: Winter 2010 (Unconfirmed)

One of the jewels in Sony’s crown has always been the beautiful ‘Team Ico’ games – the PS2 had Ico and Shadow Of The Colossus and now the PS3 gets The Last Guardian – a seemingly moving tale of a small boy and the mythical creature he discovers (?). Hard to tell exactly how this one will pan out but it will be stunning.

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BATMAN: ARKHAM ASYLUM 2

Release: Autumn 2010

One of the shocks of 2009 – a hero game that was actually really good ๐Ÿ˜ฎ It was about time and with Rocksteady having the lunatics taking over not just the asylum but most of Gotham in the sequel, Batman is sure to have his hands full later this year.

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So there we go – I’m sure I’m missed a few as there are just so many coming up and obviously more will be announced at GDC in March and E3 in June.

Gonna be a fantastic year to be a gamer.

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Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker Demo Impressions (PSP)

As far as I know this is currently only available on the Japanese PSN store but fortunately a friend had it downloaded and popped it onto my memory stick.

Sadly my knowledge of Japanese is non existent so I can tell you nothing about the story or, in fact, anything that happened during the demo. ๐Ÿ˜†

What I can tell you was that the graphics were fantastic – I would say better than PS2 ๐Ÿ˜ฎ – and that using the face buttons as a sort of ‘right stick’ like Resistance: Retribution is a great move.

It took me ages to get out of the first deserted beach area due to lack of translation – my Codec was going off consistently but I had no idea how to answer it ๐Ÿ˜† Eventually I worked out what I was doing and moved on to the next section.

There were soldiers here and it was a case of take down or be taken down. Stealth was the order of the day but unfortunately the waiter must’ve written my order down incorrectly because a misplaced shot alerted everyone and their mother to my location. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

After a particularly frantic shoot out in which I knocked out every opponent non lethally with tranquilliser darts ๐Ÿ˜Ž

Upon finishing that area we moved to some outbuildings/warehouses in the jungle where, with my new found Snake skills, I managed to take out every guard without an alert ๐Ÿ˜Ž Took me a while though ๐Ÿ˜†

Next up was a heavily guarded tank that I am still yet to defeat and I suspect it might be a part of the game that you might need to get involved in co-op with someone else.

Nevertheless after playing this Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker is a no brainer for me – I’ll definitely be picking up a copy when it arrives on PSP next year.

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