40. Rez HD
Q Entertainment / Xbox Live Arcade
What we said: "Back in the day we said of the original: 'When Rez eventually turns up cheaply it will become indispensable, but until then it's a luxury.' Xbox Live Arcade is, then, our modern printing press: digital distribution transforming the expensive and exclusive into the affordable and inclusive. Joy has rarely come so reasonably priced and, whatever the price, videogames, rarely come so joyful. Indispensable, then."
Markusdragon says: Rez HD somehow stands between the realms of the pattern-memorising shooter, the music creation toy, and the movie Tron, and outdoes all three of them. Best thing on the XBLA.
felderpony says: Sorry, someone has to vote for this! I've had Rez on every console its been released on. I personally think this is one of the all time greats that everyone should have.
CapnCloudchaser says: It was released on my birthday! Best birthday orgasm ever.
39. Sid Meier's Civilization Revolution
What we said: "This slick new Civilization may be more reduction than Revolution, but it's easily one of the most distinctive games on 360 and PS3. I can't see myself playing much more of the single-player, but I genuinely cannot wait to war over landmass with a few like-minded chums."
Snakehips76 says: Bite-sized chunks of Civ with seemingly endless replay factor. Genius.
jiffmcgriff says: Had me in a fit of interest. Its mix of child like colouring and the interesting bits of history meant I found it difficult to stop marching my civilization to victory.
pasiip says: It was a game that forced me to get 1000/1000. And I enjoyed every minute of it.
ScarOnTheSky says: The game that got my girlfriend addicted to the Xbox 360.
Pogle says: It was really good on the PS3 but I enjoyed it most portable, on the DS.
38. Football Manager 2009
What we said: "While it may not be quite the finished article, Football Manager 2009 still has more than enough quality and strength in depth to be considered championship-winning material."
davidbfc says: Every year they bring out another addictive instalment and only add extras, such as the 3D game engine, when they are sure that it works well enough and never before. They deserve full credit.
Raymeister says: You see the badly animated, pixellated player with the bald head? That's Freddie Ljungberg, your latest bargain signing. No really, it's him. The 3D match engine and Sensible Soccer player likenesses add so much to what was already a brilliant game. Bizarrely, my girlfriend seems to tolerate me watching tiny players slide around a pitch more than she did when I watched dots dance around a screen and for that SI Games, I salute you.
vaggabond says: First one I have gotten into in a couple of years and I'm in my third season now of my game, and still going strong - say no more! The 'one more game' factor is back for me!
tincanrocket says: The less said about the release debacle the better, but this is still the best FM/CM release in years. The move to a (shonky) 3D engine has made the game even more compelling. Seems a little more forgiving than past releases, though.
37. Guitar Hero: World Tour
What we said: "It's easy to imagine Guitar Hero World Tour players tearing through the set-list and then - thanks to the cross-compatibility of instruments - going back to the shop to pick up a Rock Band 2 solus disc in a few months, which also grants access to the Harmonix game's downloadable content archive. The small number of people who bought Rock Band in May or September can do the opposite and buy the Guitar Hero World Tour disc to take advantage of the Recording Studio and extra songs."
RuySan says: The tracklist was mostly awful (to many recent irrelevant emo/rock FM bands). But it's still a great party game (provided that you won't get tired of Livin' on a Prayer and Hotel California soon). I haven't played Rock Band, so I have to choose this.
markopoloman says: The full kit is very, very good. Much better than Rock Band.
MrBeast says: Just keeps getting better and better. Cracking instruments, great setlist, fantastic set-up. A party essential.
Kafkaesque says: The drums are actually like proper drums and can take a beating, huge catalogue of songs to go at. I can't think of a series of games with greater longevity in my gaming collection, and this is a welcome addition.
cyacomini says: I'd have put Rock Band in here if it weren't for GH's far superior drum-kit. The track listing too although a bit of a mixed bag can certainly hold its own against the others in the same league. Willie Nelson's "On The Road Again" is playing in my head as I type this...
36. Race Driver: GRID
What we said: "GRID is a great success: the single-player is varied without being confusing; the online multiplayer supports 12 players and damage modelling, reducing the number of first-corner pile-ups; tracks and cars are well chosen and recreated; and Flashback allows you to race with the same determination on lap three as you did on lap one, mitigating risk in a manner of which other racing game developers will soon be envious. Even if GRID doesn't give Codemasters parity with PGR in US sales, as the developer hopes, it's a fine achievement and an early leader in the race to be 2008's best driving game."
zolika says: Drifting is awesome in this game.
Trundlez says: Underhyped and usually overlooked, one of the best racing games I've played. A different style to Forza or Gran Turismo which is what makes it stand out.
Chimpus says: TOCA 08.
Jay-ITFC says: Quality wheel-banging racing from the legends at Codies. Fantastic visuals and gameplay. Can't wait to see what they do with the F1 licence. Just make it a pure sim!
stephen says: Le Mans 24 hours? Yes please. Followed by Le Mans in snow and ice in a 1930s race car with absolutely no driver aids to keep you safe.
etyek says: City racing done right compared to PGR4's disappointments. The flashback feature should be compulsory for all racers from now on.
GaidenZero says: The AI really made this driving game standout - it made it feel fair. The varied disciplines gave it longevity too.
Capcom / Clover Studios / Wii
What we said: "During the eighteen months since Okami's original release, nothing else has turned up that makes us admire it any less - not even Nintendo's own Twilight Princess comes close to the astonishing cohesion of form and content, style and substance, that makes Okami so extraordinary. It's as well-designed as Zelda, as involving as Final Fantasy, and as beautiful as anything you've ever seen; it belongs with the best of the Zelda series at the very apex of its genre."
figaro7 says: When I first started I wasn't blown away, it did feel very Zelda-like, but make no mistake, Okami walks its own path and it's a wonderful path that you'll never want to leave, not even for a coffee break.
Move42 says: So hard to like. So beautiful, so funny, so inventive. So talky, so infuriating, so repetitive. So beautiful. So easy to love.
TafKas says: Never got round to playing it on PS2, picked it up cheap and ended up loving it, one of the finest adventure games I have ever played and one of the most beautiful games ever made.
azurelas_2 says: It's perfect for the Wii, the best game that that system has on offer.
Masarin says: It's a must, it's a must, it's a mustard pie with spicy beef. Wii like it, of course wii do. Hand in glove. I'll say no more.
34. Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3 FES
KOEI / Atlus / PS2
hayaiame says: An expansion to one of the best RPGs ever to grace the home consoles. Great storyline, characters (especially the social link system characters XD), hundreds of personae to discover and a huge dungeon to explore make this a game not to be missed.
Scimarad says: Simply put, the best RPG I have played in an absolute age - puts those offerings appearing on the 360 and PS3 to shame. A great story with likable and endearing characters fused with an utterly compulsive need to find all those personas makes this an almost impossible game to put down. Bring on Persona 4!
OrangesJoel says: I'd also put P3 proper as next on the list, but that just wouldn't be fair. An extended and improved version of the best RPG in years (if not ever, but let's not open that can of worms), with elegant combat, a neat pseudo-dating sim system and extraordinarily slick presentation. Roll on P4.
neonemesis says: One of the PS2's best RPG's by far and that's before you count the extras added to the game for the FES version.
[Editor's note: If you were to add the votes accumulated by Persona 3 and Persona 3 FES together, it would move up to 22nd and bump everything down a notch, but as both were on the list and most of the comments were specific, we decided to include both.]
2K Games / PS3
What we said: "In an industry where frankly terrible stories are too often praised simply for having a vaguely coherent beginning, middle and end, it would be wrong to dwell too much on the minor inconsistencies of a story with so much pathos and subtext, told in such an inventive manner. That this story comes wrapped in a gripping and satisfying action game which offers an astonishing array of ways to play is more than enough to justify BioShock's status as a standard bearer for next generation gaming."
TheBrow says: I know this is old news on the other platforms but its definitely a case of better late than never. The story is well-told (nice twist too) and the gameplay is great.
Bazbot_SP2 says: Loved this on PC, PS3 was just as stunning. Trophy support meant multiple play-throughs and further exploration.
Weebleboy says: Completely lived up to the hype, great story telling and a wonderfully immersive world. Can't believe I had to wait a year for it!
Machewman says: One of the most atmospheric games I've ever played. It actually has that quality of making my life feel enriched after playing it, a feeling I haven't had in years.
DFawkes says: Just as good as on 360, and as good a reason as any to revisit Rapture.
32. The Witcher: Enhanced Edition
Atari / CD Projekt / PC
What we said: "Last year was bad for the PC RPG. This year, at least so far, has been even worse. In such times it's easier to look kindly on The Witcher, even the original version. The new and improved package is increasingly attractive. There are still some rough edges, and moments of genuine drama are still undercut by how they're performed, but this is an agreeably driven RPG in an agreeably ornate package. I also believe the developers' continued support for the game and commitment to expensive improvements - which I stress you'll be able to download and patch into any existent version - should be applauded."
michaelius says: Best RPG of 2007 now reaches perfection.
JayG says: It's rare a developer goes that extra mile to improve an already very good game, and make's it free to all who brought, along with the soundtrack, and all the other extras.
Evolution says: Proof that PC gaming is anything but dead. Avoids many clichs of the fantasy genre to create a game with solid gameplay, an interesting story and an impressive update to an old engine.
hjarg says: Best RPG of last year. And would have been best this year too if there weren't Fallout.
orakio says: Originally my game of the year 2007, The Witcher finds itself being re-released so that the minor issues have mostly vanished from the scene. There's a lot to say for it, and should you look at the animations and the gameplay, you could be fooled into giving it a 'mediocre' stamp... Fact is, however, the story of Geralt is one of the most compelling you've ever seen in the last few years. A good single-player RPG is like reading a good book. And The Witcher, in that regard, is a must-read for all.
Sar says: A superb update, which shows the love and care that CD Projekt: Red has for Sapkowski's works. An already brilliant RPG made even better.
xenon_md says: One of the best RPG's of recent times - many hours of whoring, hacking, slashing fun.
qoobah says: Another highlight in games storytelling, hindered by technical issues. For a gamer that values the experience over technical achievements, this proved to be an extremely fun experience in a refreshingly dark eastern-Europe flavoured fantasy setting.
31. Team Fortress 2
Valve / PC (standalone)
What we said: "In an uncharacteristic burst of intelligent observation, the game's Wikipedia entry remarks that the old design of TF2 is "quite possibly the only game to have spawned a thriving sub-genre without ever being released itself". For the people who make up that sub-genre, as well as those addressing it afresh, we're confident the reaction will be "ten years well spent"."
Discalceaterabbit says: The only game to make me cave over DRM measures.
Burton2000 says: Valve quality all over.
Wickedbug says: Because I've been playing it for almost a year and I see myself still playing it a year from now.
Elendil says: it's actually a 2007 game, but with the constant updating and support by Valve is still fresh and interesting. Playability, team play, irony and look make it a masterpiece.
Wellytopp says: Yet again, a classic remake spawned a delicious reminder of what games should be about, escapism and fun. Under all that cartoony stylized violence remains one of the prime examples of co-operative nonsense that can always stand head above others in its genre sustaining more than just a unit sold, well done Valve!