Right this very second, people are making games. The ripple started in New Zealand, then Australia, then began moving slowly west. By this evening my time, the indie-game development plague will hit the Americas.
Deeper and deeper I ventured, a brave warrior in search of… jeez, I don’t even remember at this point. At first I thought no place could be worse than the Depths, that it was the darkest point in the universe. I had defeated Gaping Dragon, its nightmare boss, and was rewarded with a key to Blighttown. That name does not sound promising, but as a brave warrior in search of <REDACTED>, it was on my list of places to visit. After all, if you’ve been keeping up with these Diaries then you know… it couldn’t be worse than the Depths, right?
The chances are that if you’ve found your way onto Tap Repeatedly, you have a videogame backlog. You can deny it all you like, but you know. You know, I know and The Log knows. The Log sees your ever amounting pile of games. He sees them and he laughs. Sat there, freshly chopped in the woodland, all sly looking, costing you money and time..
My name is Mat C and I have a backlog problem. I know I’m not alone. If you own a Steam account or have more than two PlayStation 3, Wii or Xbox 360 games to play, you have a backlog. If you’ve pre-ordered a PS Vita, intend on buying a PlayStation 4, NextBox or Wii U, you have a backlog before you’ve even purchased any hardware to tackle it on.
At Tap Repeatedly, we can help you. Or just laugh and mock. We’ll see how this goes.
I never feel comfortable writing a full review until I’ve played an entire game. On the other hand, I’m actually pretty comfortable writing an almost-review about Saints Row: The Third now. I can’t really call this “first impressions,” because I have seen a lot of Saints Row: The Third. Since buying it, I’ve watched both my husband, and a mutual friend, play pretty big chunks of the game. It’s actually one of last year’s games, contemporary to Skyrim, but since I had to wait my turn, I just started playing it this week myself. Here are my thoughts.
It’s great! I love it.
Wait, you were expecting an article of some kind? I guess I should qualify that opinion, then.
I am enjoying doing these Diaries, as someone should know my suffering, but since I waited until I had a solid backlog before publishing them, I’m beginning to forget some of the stuff that’s happened to me in late December and early January (you’ll note these Diary entries date well before that). In any case, I’m going to try and catch up a bit so I don’t forget stuff if I have a Dark Souls adventure and no chance to write it down.
Now, some of you may be getting sick of the Dark Souls Diaries. I can understand that. If you are, let me know, and I’ll polish the (currently) 6,554-word scholarly paper I’ve been working on in parallel – the one that talks about Kierkegaard and Kant, about the concept of the Knight of Faith, about Campbellian Monomyth Variances, and so on – and I’ll just run with that. It will be epic.
Remember the time Armand K got really wasted and wrote that weird paranoid manifesto about how I’d tried to lock him out of the Bordello because he owed me $7.42? Well, I don’t know if Armand’s fully kicked the habit, but I’m pleased to have him back (and apparently lucid) with another guest entry. He’s been enjoying our Games of 2011 series and thought he’d just go ahead and do one himself. Game on, my …
For gaming, 2011 was a year like many that preceded it: from January to October not a lot happened, and in November a bunch of publishers thought it was a good idea to have their games compete with Modern Blopfare and Field of Battles. At least Epic and Microsoft had the sense to get Gears of Beefcake 3 shipped in September so people would care about it for two months.
Ah, but that’s not the whole story, is it…
Slow and steady wins the race, my friends, and I have slowly and steadily been failing to make much progress in From Software’s bleakly brilliant Dark Souls, as my report here will attest. But it’s about the journey, not the destination, and thus do I share with you more of the journey. I promise, you’ll get sick of reading these long before I’m through writing them. To adventure!
About five years ago, on the message board 4chan, a Japanese artist posted a charming but strange concept illustration. The picture depicted five girls, envisioned as the potential love interests in a Japanese-style visual romance novel. So far, so ordinary, but there’s a twist: all of the young women had a unique disability. One was blind, one deaf. One had no legs, another, no arms. To round out the cast was a burn victim with …
I’m the last person on the list so far to write one of these, so that means I’m going to tread some ground our other authors have already walked. That’s all right with me, though it does mean there may not be too many surprises on my list.
These are in no particular order, really. As with the other lists, I’m not saying “objectively, these are the best games made in 2011.” These are the games I primarily played in 2011, which define the year for me personally, and which I found most obsessworthy or worthy of conversation. I also decided, so as not to go on forever, to narrow this list down to games actually released in 2011, but I’ll mention other titles below.
When I think back over the last twelve months of my gaming year, the word that instantly springs to my mind is “change”. I began 2011 the same way I’ve started and ended the last fifteen years; as an exclusively console gamer. But mid way through this particular year something changed. I built my own PC. On a personal level this represented a huge undertaking, something I never thought I’d achieve and certainly not successfully, …
Usually I wouldn’t even consider writing one of these lists because my playing throughput is so spectacularly bad that I’m always — and by some margin — behind the curve with releases. The 2011 wave has been a particularly overwhelming one for me with game after game crashing in and yet, somehow, I’ve managed to stay afloat and play enough — merely enough — of them to warrant chiming in.
Ahh, 2011. The year in which we were supposed to have the Rapture (twice), the year of the Arab Spring, of Occupy, of the Whipping Judge and Pepper Spray Cop. The year of Steerpike’s Neglecting To Get His Carpets Shampooed, Even Though They Need It. The year of the release of Titus Awakes, which I haven’t finished but which probably doesn’t include my namesake since he died in Titus Groan. The year Brandon, Amanda, Bearwhale, and Ravious joined us as contributors. The year I gained weight, and the year I played games.
As it happens, all the games I rank below came out in 2011, though that’s not a rule. Our objective is to tell you about the games that we’ll remember most from 2011, whether they shipped that year or a decade before. And we’re each taking it in our stride – ranking, rambling, sorting. There are no rules. These are the ones that stick out in my mind. Some made me irresponsibly happy. Others made me inconceivably sad. I leave the rest to you, because I love you all, and I wish you a glorious 2012. If the world doesn’t end in December, be sure we’ll return with that year’s batch.
Happy New Year, Tappers! (That’s what you call yourselves, right? Like, when you go to Tap-Repeatedly conventions and such?) Needless to say, 2011 was a big year for games. Loads of eagerly-awaited releases, some great surprises, and just general all-around awesomeness. These days, it’s not hard to point out a really well crafted game from the last year; it’s probably a bit harder to narrow that down to five or ten. But we here at …
At least one other person expressed interest in seeing how my attempt to clear out my Steam indie games backlog was going. After a holiday full of travel, I have returned home to once again check out some more games I bought this year, then never remembered to play. The screenshot above is from physics puzzler NightSky, by Nicalis, and I will also be talking about Jamestown, the “bullet hell” shooter from (apparently local to …