Thursday, May 26, 2011

The Last “Great” Game That You’ve Played.

I find that there isn’t too much to talk about in the Nintendo world that isn’t 3DS related at the moment. I mean, we’ve all heard rumors about what we can expect to see from Nintendo and its new console, but other than that we’ve been left in the dark, put in an almost pre-E3 rut state. Meaning that, hey, we got some time to kill.

So In honor of E3 approaching, I would like to draw up the following question. What is the last “great” game that you’ve had the pleasure of playing, and what things did it do to set it apart from the rest?

The last “great” game I played, would have to be a title by the name of Resident Evil 4 (the Wii edition mind you.) I remember going into the game with hardly any knowledge on the series; the only thing I knew was when I was younger, one of the games gave me nightmares for a week; shout out to my wonderful elder cousin, for letting ten year old me play an original resident evil game in a dark room, downstairs by myself and with no night light in sight.

But skip to the present, and the game I had the opportunity of playing a little less than a year ago, Resident Evil 4. This game was a twenty dollar pick up, that I decided to get based on a random video review I stumbled across for it, in an attempt to find a good Wii game. (This was around the time where I was craving something that wasn’t made by Nintendo.) But anyways, yeah, I watched the review, and it seemed like a good game to gamble on.

So I pop in the game for the first time, struggling for about the first half hour as I was trying to trying to get the controls down. And you know what, looking back now, those first 30 minutes were probably the only bad parts of the game for me; because after that, I knew how to use the controls and it was smooth sailing!

I mean, I was hooked! I got to shoot zombies in the face, and slash any in arms reach of me! I was creeping around trying not to engage a horde of them, while at the same time, looking for bullets and herbs to survive and progress further in the game. It was just such a pleasantly new feeling and an absolute rush for me; I was scared and excited at the same time.

One part of me wanted to turn on the lights and set the controller down, while the other, well, he just wanted to kick ass and take names in the pitch black aura that was my basement. That is one thing about playing this game is, it’s a game that has a certain tone to it, and its setting is crucially important for full enjoyment. I mean, how many other games are played best in the dark with the intention of getting you all uppity and terrified every time you open a new door?

Another thing that was really great about Resident Evil 4, was the controls adapted to its Wii port. I mean, it was the first time I ever saw a Wii game actually take advantage of the console’s motion controls for the better of mankind, and in an exciting and new way! Reloading with a downward shake motion of the Wiimote, the use of your knife with a swing of the Nunchuck, it was just pure genius to make use of the controls like that! I know it might sound like something that anyone could have come up with, granted anyone could, but it was a rarity to see controls used right on the Wii at that point, even now you wonder what some games were trying to do with their motion controls. But not in Resident Evil 4; no other games made it such a natural thing, and the controls just became second nature.

Notice how I haven’t talked about the story or graphics in this game at all? It’s by mistake and design simultaneously. Coming into this, I wanted to talk about the story and graphics of course, but my love for how fun Resident Evil 4 was to play, versus how it appeared graphically and how good the story was, totally overshadowed both of the those categories. This does not mean I didn’t enjoy the visuals, they were better than most Wii games I was used to. And this doesn’t mean that I didn’t find the story intriguing, it had good pacing, and I was really in to the whole virus outbreak that took over Leon/ taking care of the president’s daughter/ stopping Los Illuminados part of the story.

It just means that a great game for me at the end of the day, comes from how it plays, and my enjoyment in playing it. Everything else is a perk, and an added incentive to continue playing; they're great to have, and make the experience that much more enjoyable.


Maxi said...

Hmm I have a similar experience as you for RE4 Wii Edition but I did play REmake for the Cube so it wasn't exact.

Probably the game that stands out recently that I have played is Monster Hunter Tri. It just is a very enjoyable game to play and it is a fun co-op game that works on teamwork instead of competition. I think the main thing that draws me to the game is helping out other players and figuring out armor sets.

NinSage said...

Absolutely great write-up, Supa.

I also was blown away by RE4Wii. I was a long-time fan of the series but the Wii controls really set that game above the rest. Of course, the kick ass story, characters and tone helped a wee bit =P

And yea, it seems like a no-brainer to make games that utilize the Wii's strengths, yet, it's a rare thing to actually see it done!

Before I answer what the last "great" game I played was, I need to know, is this the last game that WE consider great? Or the last """great""" game? As in, the consensus is that it is great?

Supa said...

@NinSage- Thanks, I wish I could of said more, but I wanted to post before midnight!

To answer you question, I absolutely want you to list the last game that YOU consider great, and the last game that you truly enjoyed playing.

In other words, a game that wasn't played to just "kill some time", but one that made you want to continue playing every time you set the controller down.

One that maybe had an amazing story you wanted to hear the end of, visuals that blew you away or maybe like me, gameplay that was enticing and offered great wholesome fun.

I hope that helped you in selecting your answer!

EV said...

The last game I played that would come anywhere near my top 10 was Metroid Prime. Of course there are a lot of 'great' games I've played since that would be at least in my top 50.

Most recent game that really blew me away would have to be Minecraft. It may be essentially an alpha with plenty of room to improve but even as an alpha it's brilliant and addicting.

The amount of possibilities it offers towers over it's more expensive peers, it's the kind of game I've been waiting for as long as I can remember. All those games of Sim City, The Sims, Harvest Moon, Civilization and countless RTS game where I wished I could set aside the definable goals of the game and simply build and create until I could build and create no more where all leading up to getting my hands on a concept like this.

As soon as Minecraft reaches it's completion or someone takes the concept and creates a truly polished replica it likely will come into my top 10...unless they find some way to screw it all up :P

NinSage said...

OK, this is a tough choice to make but let's go over the candidates.

1. 9 Hours 9 Persons 9 Doors - NO

The ending disappointed me so much that this great game experience became very sour.

2. Metroid: Other M - NO

The writing was shaky and the controversy surrounding the game really sat in the back of my mind too much to enjoy it to the fullest.

3. Prof Layton Unwound Future - NO

This whole series might get the vote but each game is really too similar (in a good way) to stand out enough on its own.

4. Donkey Kong Country Returns - NO

VERY close call but ultimately parts of the Mirror Mode were based too much on luck than skill, and that marred what could have been a truly inspired return to "Nintendo hard" gaming.

5. Super Mario Galaxy 2 - NO

Again, it was a fantastic game, but certain similarities/differences from the first game hinder its chances of me calling it "great" in the sense we're talking here.

6. Pokémon White - NO

Again, a bit too similar to previous installments. If they had advanced some of the online features we might really have been on to a "great" one.

So ...

WINNER: Monster Hunter Tri!

Yea, it's really no contest in that last year I was utterly obsessed with this game.

I said it before and I'll say it again, I'm well over 500 hours into the game and I still see new things. That's "great" in my book.

Plus, waaaaaay too many games claim to let you customize your character and thus gaming experience, but really, there is only ONE way (per class) to do it "right." Not so with Monster Hunter. However you want the experience to be? However you want to help your teammates? With the right gear, skill and a clever mind to use them, you can do it!

*bows to Tri*

Lux said...

Mine would be Okami! The gameplay,story, beauty and art used in this game made it so intresting i could not stop and play and if i did stop im always crazed to get back and see what was next in the journie.

Supa said...

Great responses everyone. I'm really glad that so many of you took part in this discussion, and there were a lot of awesome titles mentioned.

@NinSage- I sorta figured that you would end up going that route and choosing Tri. Haha, I guess it deserves the acclaim if it beat out everything else that you considered!