Some people may have already guessed that I’m not the “average” gamer. Average, in this case, meaning I like my games having more substance than something like mother*cking Call of Duty. Seriously, you people who wait in line for hours to play the exact same game you played a year ago are causing a huge decline in quality. Remember the crash of 1983? It was YOUR mentality that did it! Anyway, since you know so well about the games I hate and I always talk about the games I love I figured it was time to list off some of the lesser known games I’ve enjoyed that I haven’t yapped about. So that means you won’t be seeing any mentions of Heavy Rain this time! So let’s get right to it and talk about the awesome games you may have missed.
These days hyper realistic graphics and frantic intense action are the bread and butter of the industry and thankfully this game has NONE of those! To me Limbo is the depressing head-scratching crown jewel of the Xbox Arcade and it was so good that it even managed to cross over into the PlayStation Store. The premise is pretty much up to you to figure out because there aren’t any voiceovers or dialogue balloons to help you fill in the ambiguous blanks. I’ll explain it, though. You play as the silhouette of a boy who wakes up to find himself in Limbo (the depressing space between life and death or heaven and hell depending on your views) on his quest to rescue either his sister or friend. It’s a platformer/puzzler that has you traveling across its dark miserable side scrolling landscapes cleverly battling or escaping from what I assume are the boy’s worst fears which include spiders, drowning, and other asshole kids. If you’ve never played it, I highly recommend at least testing out the demo before the next-gen consoles come out and, if you want, share your interpretation of the game’s story and events! That’s always fun.
It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood! A beautiful d- ZOMG! That kid hung himself!
TellTale’s The Walking Dead:
Yeah, okay, so technically this game isn’t exactly underappreciated because it sold phenomenally well BUT I still hear people who haven’t even given it a chance bitching about the graphics and slow gameplay comparing it to completely unrelated zombie games like… no, I’m not saying it. I don’t care that it has a DLC zombie portion to it. F*ck that game! The Walking Dead has never and will never be about killing an endless horde of zombies until a timer runs out. You can slap ANY theme onto that type of gameplay and it won’t make a damn bit of difference. THIS game is all about stories and characters. The people you run into talk and act like actual everyday people, not combat-experienced soldiers, and they have very real problems of their own to deal with on top of the zombie apocalypse. There’s a diabetic who acts like an asshole, but makes strong points, a man desperately trying to protect his family, a teenager who was in school when the outbreak started and doesn’t know what happened to his parents, a little girl that tugs on your heartstrings, and all kinds of drama that makes you really think about what you’d have to inevitable deal with should the zombie apocalypse ever occur for reals. If you’re one of the few shallow gamers who haven’t played it just because you aren’t running and gunning in high-res environments you owe it to whatever’s left of your brain to play this game.
This is one of the few games where the death of a character feels like a legitimate loss.
Silent Hill Downpour:
I’m very much aware of how much of a decline the Silent Hill series has seen since 2004’s Silent Hill: The Room (which started out as a different game and was later dressed up in Silent Hill skin by the way). The problems caused by later entries in the series had pretty much murdered the series for me, but Downpour managed to come back and correct MOST of them. The story was much more engaging and the interesting characters all had very dark motivations behind their vengeful actions. The running theme was all about redemption and forgiveness and playing as escaped convict Murphy Pendleton while he coped with the consequences of his decisions made for the best psychological thriller I’ve seen since – NO! I promised I wouldn’t bring it up this time! But it was THAT good! The combat was still frustrating at times and the game has a glaring glitch with its fast travel system (it doesn’t work… at all), but being forced to trek through the town’s streets made it more enjoyable. Silent Hill is as creepy as it’s ever been and the ambience is worth backtracking through the foggy streets. And the theme song performed by Korn’s Jonathan Davis fits the game just as awesomely as the older theme songs from Mary Elizabeth McGlynn.
Downpour isn’t the complete return to form fans may have been wanting, but it beats Homecoming by a long shot and is a LOT closer to Silent Hill’s roots than any other recent game in the series.
This puzzle game is f*cking hard! Some might say it’s too hard, but those people probably aren’t used to games of this genre. Ever since I played Persona 3 I’ve fallen in love with Atlus and this one is another one of their underappreciated gems worth taking a look at. You play as Vincent Brooks while he struggles with a very adult-oriented situation not often visited by video games: infidelity. Yep, this dude’s got two hot chicks (Katherine and Catherine) on his d*ck and he doesn’t know which one he really wants. Interested yet? His girlfriend, Katherine, wants to settle down, get married, and start a family and Vincent isn’t sure if he’s ready to make that giant leap. That’s when Catherine, the hot chick of his bachelor fantasies, shows up out of nowhere and they begin having an affair which haunts Vincent’s dreams where the core gameplay takes place. The game’s difficulty might turn some people off, but deciding to cheat on your girlfriend who wants to get married is an equally difficult situation to face, so it’s a perfect fit when you think about it.
I’m starting to think the reason this game was so difficult was because of the *ahem* distractions.
3D Dot Heroes:
Do you know what the difference is between a rip-off and a throwback? THIS GAME! As another gem from Atlus, this throwback to simpler times from years gone by is also a parody that acknowledges its VERY OBVIOUS NES roots. Just pull up a few screenshots to see for yourself. What’s REALLY surprising, though, is that Nintendo didn’t try to sue the ever-loving sh*t out of Atlus for making it. Remember when former attorney Jack Thompson tried to sue Midway for making it possible for players to create a character that looked like him so we could rip his head off in brutally satisfying fatalities? Well, this game gives players the option to create their own character from scratch and, wouldn’t you know it, the most fitting and well-known sprite from happens to be Link from The Legend of Zelda. You won’t be able to download him, but there are blueprints on the internet to follow so you can play a classic adventure game with the old-school icon. And despite everything being made up of blocks or “3D dots” the game’s visuals are surprisingly gorgeous! If you love old-school games and The Legend of Zelda this is a must-play for you.
Seriously, how did they avoid a lawsuit?!?! Does Nintendo not know this game exists???
Well, those are my top 5 underappreciated games of this generation. If you haven’t played them, I suggest getting online to find them. They’re all worth playing and you’ll get a many more hours of enjoyment from them than anything you’re probably right playing now. There are more games than this which I loved that didn’t get the recognition they deserved and I might revisit this topic to talk about them later on if you guys want. Let everyone know what games you felt deserved the spotlight in the comments section below and then do these:
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Until next time, I bid you adieu!