20. Earth Defence Force 2017
D3Publisher / Sandlot / Xbox 360
Simon Parkin: Who'd use ant powder when you can call in EDF! EDF! EDF!
Kieron Gillen: Even above Portal, the game I loved most this year. You know - actual love. Affection. Cuddles. Kissing on the lips and holding hands and skipping. I remember finding myself in Paris, talking to someone who reviewed it for one of the mainstream mags and sharing stories of Enormous-Ant-Love, talking about setting up some kind of fansite full of fan-fiction and art and slash/fic (HOT! Spider/Ant stories) and whatever. And he only gave it 7. Everyone who played the game loved it, but most of them only gave it 7. Because they are all BLOODY COWARDS or their bosses SMELL FUNNY and don't like HAVING FUN or SOMETHING. I mean, how can you give a game that's just fun a high score? That sounds suspiciously like crazy talk and... oh, God, just read my review already. MEN WITH GUNS VERSUS GIANT ANTS. It's a VIDEOGAME.
Dan Whitehead: This is my litmus test game. I recommend it to every friend who buys a 360, fully prepared to disown them should they fail to recognise its clunky brand of brilliance. Amazingly, absolutely everyone who played it has laughed at how technically inept it is, and promptly fallen in love with it regardless. Include online co-op play in the sequel and it'll be the best game of all time. This is scientific fact.
Jim Rossignol: EDF 2017 is the greatest gaming achievement of our time.
Kristan Reed: Now come on, it's a fun game and all that, but this is trendy voting gone mad. 20? Better than The Darkness, God of War 2, Crysis, Ratchet, HL2 Ep2? Cuh'yeahRIGHT. It's the sort of game you can play in half-hour doses and have a blast at the sheer relentlessness of it all, but beyond that it grates. Also, the graphics really are irredeemably bad at times, and although that's not the primary consideration, my brain can't ignore the cheapness of it all. Clearly an acquired taste.
Matt Martin: Goddamn mother[fluffing -Ed] bugs must die!!! Cheap, quality, trash.
Matt Martin: Who says EA can't do subtle? The controls are almost perfect. I'd grown tired of the punch-in-the-face presentation of Tony Hawk's games but Skate brought me back to the beauty of simple lines across objects, tabletops and gaps. It's the most relaxed gaming experience I've played for years. Lovely stuff.
Jim Rossignol: I don't even like skating nonsense and I still played this obsessively for months. Hell, if EA designed a "walking down the street just not really doing anything" game called "Pedestrian", and it was done like this, I'd play it.
Kieron Gillen: Who could have known that falling over repeatedly could be so much fun?
Rich Leadbetter: As a debut title to challenge the all-conquering Hawk, this is a very impressive offering. I love its heavily processed visuals, its context-sensitive use of EA Trax audio, and its control method - a logical progression from Hawk's dial-a-combo interface. But its low-slung 'life thru a lens' camera angle really put me off, making even the most basic grinds difficult to get to grips with. Considering how important accessibility is to the average EA game, I was surprised at just how ultra-tough this was. Alas I wasn't so surprised at the shambling PlayStation 3 conversion.
Keza MacDonald: A friend of mine loved this because it has a point button. He seemed to find pointing whilst falling over endlessly entertaining.
18. Metroid Prime 3: Corruption
Nintendo / Retro Studios / Wii
John Walker: Good heavens, I love this game. It's exquisite. The level design is just astonishing. But better than HL2 Ep Two? No. Clearly not. Sigh.
Oli Welsh: Unreasonably, I hate this game. Unreasonably because it's beautifully finished, nails first-person controls on the Wii to perfection, and generally delivers most of what a Metroid should. But there's something weary and overdeveloped and by-the-numbers about it; it keeps getting the tone wrong, the design isn't twisted or mysterious or organic enough, it's too Americanised and goal-oriented, and just not bloody scary enough.
Kristan Reed: The best use of the Wii controls so far, in my humble opinion, and one of the three must-have games on the console so far. If you're into shooters, this is up there with Call of Duty 4 and BioShock, and about three times more engaging than Halo 3. Really.
Rob Fahey: Every other developer take note - this is how you do an FPS on the Wii controller. I suspect many people missed MP3 because it came out right in the middle of a host of other great games; if you're among those people, you should definitely have it on your catch-up list for 2008. It feels like a game that spent ages being tweaked and balanced to make it perfect, and every second was time well-spent.
17. Project Gotham Racing 4
Microsoft / Bizarre Creations / Xbox 360
Kristan Reed: Another on my list of "games to play over Xmas". Looks shiny, but I'm a bit bored of PGR games now, I have to admit. Sequelitis kicking in. Sorry Bizarre Creations, I'll do my best.
Tom Bramwell: Subtlety isn't perhaps the most obvious choice when it comes to reeling people back in for game number four, but we still love Bizarre for choosing this approach - PGR4 is an improvement in handling, track design, structure and reward system. So, almost entirely. And yet at a glance - motorbikes excepted - it's pretty much the same. As the final PGR game to be put together by the chaps in Liverpool (since acquired by Activision, for whom they will now be tasked with making a new racing game from scratch), it's the brilliant destination at the end of a journey that began on Dreamcast with Metropolis Street Racer.
Oli Welsh: I think I've probably played this for longer than any other game this year. I still can't quite make my mind up whether it's better than 2; it really comes down to a corner here, a view there, the Morgan Aero 8 and the Mound versus vintage Minis and Macau. Even if it's not as good, that still makes it the second best racing game in the world, with superb, varied event design that makes a mockery Forza's relentless grind.
16. Puzzle Series Vol. 5: Slitherlink
Hudson / DS
Dan Whitehead: Happy now, Tom? Happy now?
Tom Bramwell: Sadly, I'm not convinced anyone does stalk me virtually, but if they did, then they might have noticed that I was dispatched abroad rather a lot in the period beginning in late May and ending in early September. Indeed, I clocked up enough air miles to officially lick the window to the executive lounge without being tazered, and I only have to eat 4967 more peanuts to qualify for an aisle seat. Anyway, I can honestly say that on one of these flights - a particularly serene nine hours to somewhere American - I turned on my DS at the start and didn't turn it off until landing, and all because of Slitherlink. I've spent more time on it this year than almost any other game, and have sworn at it and grinned at it and recommended it more than any other. I won't recount the concept, because if you haven't picked up on it by now then you deserve the thrill of having it click for you in your very own hands. It will probably never come out here (despite a few deals that almost came off this year that I'm aware of), but the Japanese menus are piss-easy to figure out and it really is the best logic puzzle I've ever encountered. Please buy it. If you regret it, you can always put it on eBay where I will buy it off you so I can make it someone's birthday present for the seventh or eighth time.
Kristan Reed: Shut up about bloody Slitherlink you mentalist!
John Walker: Tom? There's been some sort of mistake. The number one game has appeared at 16. Tom? Kristan? Anyone? Oh no! They've all gone on holiday, and there's no one here to correct this mistake! Readers, you'll have to do the work for them. Cut out this section of your monitor, and glue it over whatever wrongly appeared at number 1 this year. The best puzzle game ever, better than Tetris or Picross or bloody Suckodu, made in the best way possible by the heroes at Hudson, perfectly designed for the DS. 100/10. Slitherlink, congratulations on being the Eurogamer no. 1 game of 2007!
Kieron Gillen: I try very hard to avoid talking to Walker about this. He likes games which involve patterns and stuff, while I like games about Enormous Death Ants. It's a miracle we don't just slash each other to ribbons with ankle-blades.
Simon Parkin: Walker's 10 was an attention-seeking move (in a good way: this kind of obscure Japanese import required a unequivocal, headline-grabbing recommendation to get it noticed) but his unreserved praise was well warranted. This simple puzzle game is hopelessly addictive and that pulse of energy when you finally marry the two ends of the convoluted line is like a shiver down the spine.
Rob Fahey: This feels like a good moment to apologise to my friend Barry, who had to sit next to me on a flight from Tokyo to London on which I played Slitherlink pretty much the whole way. Honestly, at no point was there a real danger that I'd throw my DS Lite across the cabin, and I didn't mean to make you uncomfortable. Slitherlink is an emotional experience, you see - and you just got caught up in the emotion. Sorry, Barry.
Capcom / Clover Studio / PS2
Kristan Reed: Again, a game that might have figured higher on the list if more of the panel had played it. Simply an amazingly ambitious action adventure, easily the equal of Zelda, if not better in many regards, and probably one of the five best games ever made for the PS2. The fact that it's coming out on the Wii should give it a new lease of life - and the fact it's in the hands of the hugely talented Ready At Dawn team gives us hope that the port will be even better with the Wii controls.
Jim Rossignol: When this first turned up I left it idling on our home TV for hours - each frame was an exquisite painting. Anyone passing by couldn't help but pick up the controller and move around, entranced. Truly beautiful and delicately designed - I completely fell in love with it. Shame about the five months of unskippable claptrap at the beginning, but hey, you can't have it all.
John Walker: I watched the introduction, and then tragically died of old age. Hopefully if I ever get to be alive again, I'll actually play the game, which I hear is terribly good.
Tom Bramwell: If you're wondering why this is on the list, having been on it last year, it's because Kristan loves it so much that he unilaterally re-wrote the site's Top 50 policy, antagonising all of our contributors.
Oli Welsh: Hey, I've finally played Twilight Princess, now. This is loads better. Such a shame that the vote got split on this one due to the delayed Euro release; it really deserved a top ten placing, either this year or last. Happily, thanks to the forthcoming Wii version, we get to vote for it a third year in a row, and it couldn't deserve it more. To copy Zelda successfully is unheard of. To actually trump it defies belief.
14. Uncharted: Drake's Fortune
Sony / Naughty Dog / PS3
Keza MacDonald: I've not played this much, but hurrah for a male Lara Croft. Unless he's a tosser.
Kristan Reed: Probably would have been higher up in the list if it'd have come out earlier (and more of our panel had played it), but my initial assessment of it being the PS3's best game to date appears to be on the money. Taking all the best bits of Tomb Radier, ICO and Gears of War and moulding them into a comic book action adventure was an inspired decision. Naughty Dog proves yet again what a superb developer it is.
Tom Bramwell: It's not particularly long, and the combat can become rather boring, but Uncharted gets far too much right to let that stop it. The characters are likeable, believable, brilliantly acted and animated so well that the platforming gives Assassin's Creed's parkour a run (albeit not a free-run) for its money, and the cut-scenes are to be looked forward to rather than skipped. Some of the camerawork and level design is evocative of ICO, and if I had been waiting for a reason to buy a PS3 (rather than automatically buying one as soon as I could because everyone should own all consoles yes all of them chop chop), this and the price cut would have pushed me over the edge, if not thrown me bodily and awarded me 2x ammo for the brutality of my capitulation. Also, this has a female character in it with normal breasts, which is a step in the right direction. Shame she doesn't have an alarming mole on her face though. That would be perfect. And maybe some sort of facial tick.
Rich Leadbetter: After spending so much time wading through the cross-platform sewerage that oozed its way onto PS3 this year, Uncharted is nothing short of a revelation. While its basic Gears of War meets Tomb Raider concept isn't hugely innovative, its execution is nothing short of spectacular. As a technical showcase for PlayStation 3, there's nothing quite like it - it's the first game that truly makes me wonder whether the Xbox 360 can match what PS3 is capable of in the right hands.
Simon Parkin: The most unexpected and pleasant surprise of 2007. It makes me feel like my dad reading Biggles as a young boy in the 1950s: pulp fiction, Boy's Own adventuring inpixellate. With superb voice acting, likeable characters and just the right feel to all of its interactive elements, it's the first game I'd urge somebody to buy a PlayStation 3 for.
13. Final Fantasy XII
Square Enix / PS2
Alec Meer: To whoever voted for this: I bet you you think Coldplay records are edgy and exciting too.
Tom Bramwell: Shame of the page: I still haven't got round to this. Although I understand that it plays itself, so I might leave it to it.
Simon Parkin: We did this last year, no? Wait! This must be why Square-Enix take so f**king long to release their games in Europe...
Oli Welsh: This topped my list last year, when I played it on import. And I generally don't like Final Fantasy or JRPGs, which should tell you all you need to know. A deserving second bite of the cherry then, thanks to the Euro release, and what a swansong for the PS2.
Kristan Reed: I've never understood the appeal, and I don't suppose I ever will!
Rob Fahey: A lot of people don't like Final Fantasy XII - and you know, that's fine. I'm not here to tell you what you can and can't like. All I can tell you is that I like Final Fantasy XII, quite a lot. It's got an epic scale, a narrative sweep that eschews teen melodrama in favour of political intrigue and drops clichés for complexity - and a bold approach to real-time play which uproots much of FF's turn-based history and replaces it with an open, customisable system of interlocking orders and reactions. Its brave, it's brilliant - and it's divisive.
12. Peggle Deluxe
PopCap / PC
Tom Bramwell: Alec has a lot to answer for.
Jim Rossignol: Peggle is the greatest gaming achievement of our time.
John Walker: Oh dear, another mistake. How embarrassing. They appear to have misspelt "Bookworm Adventures", which is obviously the best PopCap game of the year. Peggle comes in second to the far superior spelling game, and is quite fun. (True story: I was meant to review this for EG, but due to being a lazy idiot, forgot, so Alec did it. And I would have given it the decent 7 it deserves, and then the whole internet would have tried to murder me. So a lucky escape for Peggle, and a lucky escape for me).
Tom Bramwell: Yeah actually, where's Bookworm? And SumoTori? And that keepy-uppy Flash one that uses the mouse?
Kieron Gillen: That this is above Final Fantasy makes me very happy indeed. Appropriate, as Peggle also makes me very happy indeed. Its one of the most inspired designs of the year, from its high concept (Pachinko meets Puzzle Bobble) to its practice (the art is the balance between skill and non-skill - you have just enough latitude to make a decision, but there's enough tension sitting back and seeing how the ball falls) to its execution (ODE TO JOY! RAINBOWS! EXTREME FEVER! SPARKLES EVERYWHERE! ANTS DANCE! Er... actually, no ants) to its post-release follow-ups (EXTREME PEGGLE!). Only Terminally Joyless people called John Walker could diss it.
Simon Parkin: The first game to unite the casual and enthusiast gaming demographics and who'd have thought it would be based on pachinko, a Japanese pastime familiar to neither. Fireworks, 'Ode to Joy' and the lettering 'Extreme Fever!' flashing across the screen condenses everything good and true in videogames into one tiny pixel micro-orgasm.
Alec Meer: Peggle Peggle Peggle, Peggle Peggle Peggle. PEGGLE. I really like Peggle. You should really like Peggle too. If you don't, then I hate you.
11. Pac-Man: Championship Edition
Namco / Xbox 360
Keza MacDonald: People have been playing this for longer than I've been alive. I suppose that counts for something.
Oli Welsh: This really should have made a bigger splash than it did. Pac-Man's original creator returns to the game after decades, and demonstrates that he's no one-hit wonder with a work of enormous ingenuity and simple genius; that is what I call a good story. Surely you can count innovative yet faithful updates of classic arcade games on the fingers of one hand - certainly, Tempest 2000 is the only other one I can think of right now. This is my Live Arcade game of the year, anyway. Shame I'm so very terrible at it.
Rich Leadbetter: This lovely little game has much in common with the brilliant Super Stardust HD (criminally overlooked for this top 50). Both are inspired re-inventions of true gaming classics; just the sort of 'retro evolved' title I really want to see more of on PSN and XBLA as opposed to cringe-making ports with eye-wateringly bad 'HD' graphics.
John Walker: Oh come on.
Kieron Gillen: Metal Gear Solid minus the cut-scenes.
Tom Bramwell: I am the best at this in the whole of Eurogamer, having spent hours perfecting the basic mode. I just want to make that clear. I wasn't just doing it to annoy Ellie, either (although that was the original reason, obviously); when you burst through your high score with time still on the clock, after so much careful preparation and deft manoeuvring, the panic of trying to carve some success out of the unknown under pressure is unrivalled. Yes, it's absurd that it's this high up the list, but it's somehow rather lovely as well. (I didn't vote for it either, before anyone asks.)
Simon Parkin: Imagine sitting down and deciding to reinvent Pac-Man. Then imagine that what you came up with betters the original. A more unlikely scenario it's difficult to imagine. There are, of course, criticisms that can be levelled against C.E. Setting the game against the clock being the most obvious. But somehow what is a lazy and arbitrary way to provide a challenge is also its masterstroke, allowing score competition between players of all abilities viable and enjoyable.
Dan Whitehead: I admire the work that's gone into completely revamping such a famous game design without actually changing the gameplay all that much, but I'm rubbish at it and therefore hate it.
Matt Martin: Very classy reinvention of that little yellow fella. Looks smooth, very addictive and horribly hypnotic. I bought a Neo Geo Pocket this year so I could play a portable version.
Kristan Reed: Ludicrously addictive. Pac-Man was the reason I got into gaming in the first place back in 1981, and something I still get a curious kick out of 26 years later. The fact that someone like Tom got into this even more than me was actually quite gratifying, and proof that you can bring retro concepts bang up to date without watering down their accessibility or hardcore nature. Live Arcade game of the year, easily.