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Your Turn: What have you been playing this year?

Date
Screen Play regular luverley_5pam has crunched the numbers to tell us what Screenies have been playing this year

Screen Play regular luverley_5pam has crunched the numbers to tell us what Screenies have been playing this year

When all is said and done, I believe in the future we shall look back at 2012 as a particularly fine year for video games. This has been made crystal clear to me in my weekly task of collating responses to the weekly "What have you been playing lately?" posts every Monday, and posting the top 5 responses in the WHYBPL Hypemeter. As I look down the sheer quality of games represented in the overall top 10 discussed games of the year I can only marvel, and when looking at the games that missed out the mind boggles further.

144 games in total managed to chart on the Hypemeter in 2012, and in this gross of gaming goodness future gold star classics such as Journey, Dishonored, Trials Evolution, Fez, Spelunky, and FTL all failed to crack the top 10, although a few got agonisingly close. Indeed, a further ten games finished within five points of tenth place, meaning a single first placing could have got them on the list.

The top ten is why we are here though, and a rich and varied smorgasbord of digital delights they represent too.  If one were stuck on a desert island with only these ten games for company, it’d be a long time before boredom would set in!  A note on the methods used, I assigned each game a point score based on their position in each weeks list (five points for a first place, down to one point for a fifth place). Adding the total scores for the year gives the end rankings. In the case of tied scores, the deadlock is broken on a count back of scores (most firsts, most seconds, etc.)

10th place: Far Cry 3 (15 points, 3 first places, 3 appearances)

As a fitting end to a vintage year for games, Far Cry 3 sneaks into the top ten by virtue of three first places in its three weeks of release. A strong contender for many gamers' "game of the year" lists, it narrowly beat out Everybody’s Golf on the Vita, which had 15 points also, but only a single first place. Far Cry 3 should be a warm favourite to feature higher in the list next year, as many gamers will newly discover the delights of the Rook Islands in 2013.

9th place: Battlefield 3 (20 points, 1 first place, 8 appearances)

After managing an eighth place finish last year, Battlefield 3 drops a single place to finish ninth on 2012’s list. The Battlefield series seems to have the edge over the evergreen Call of Duty games when it comes to the military shooter closest to Screenies' hearts, and this year was no different. The potential release of Battlefield 4 in 2013 will see this heated rivalry continue.

8th place: Dark Souls (26 points, 0 first places, 11 appearances)

If any doubts linger over the Screen Play community’s hardcore gamer credentials, they are immediately dispelled by the abiding love for the tough-as-nails Dark Souls. While Dark Souls never managed to top the Hypemeter in 2012, it did bubble away beneath the surface all year long though, with seven of its appearances being in fourth or fifth spot on the list. These regular mentions meant it could improve on its 2011 score of 10 points and land eighth place on our list.

7th place: The Walking Dead (26 points, 0 first places, 10 appearances)

The Walking Dead has been one of this year’s big gaming triumphs, and arguably the first game to ever really crack the episodic-content nut. Regular releases meant that not only were gamers thrilled with tough choices throughout the year, but The Walking Dead continued to return to the Hypemeter every month or so. Tied on points with Dark Souls, it gains the higher placing on the strength of its four second places, as compared to Dark Souls’ two seconds.

6th place: Deus Ex: Human Revolution (28 points, 1 first place, 10 appearances)

Last year’s champion, Deus Ex: Human Revolution is the second of three games to make the chart in both 2011 and 2012. Landing in sixth spot, Deus Ex was a game that many Screenies managed to remove from their stacks of shame this year. What’s more, many others were quick to offer helpful hints and advice whenever a new player chose to step into Adam Jensen’s shoes.

5th place: Diablo III (31 points, 4 first places, 7 appearances)

Not without its share of criticisms, Diablo III manages to place in our top five.  Initially starting strong, it managed four consecutive first place rankings. However, it dropped off the chart fairly rapidly, with players turned off by things such as always-on DRM and the real-money auction house.

4th place: XCOM: Enemy Unknown (33 points, 2 first places, 9 appearances)

The return of the XCOM franchise was a high point of the year for many old school PC gamers, and something of a resurrection for a dormant genre.  XCOM is somewhat unique in WHYBPL history, in that, rather than starting by topping the charts and slowly dropping away, it debuted in third place and only moved to the top after over a month of release.

3rd place: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (51 points, 5 first places, 15 appearances)

Skyrim is a favourite amongst the Screen Play community, and has performed the impressive feat of retaining its third placing from last year. Indeed, it can possibly be considered a little unfortunate to not have improved its ranking, considering in 2012 it managed 14 more points from seven extra appearances. 51 points would have been enough to top the table by some margin in 2011, but unfortunately for Skyrim, there were two undisputed juggernauts released this year. Even so, had points been counted during the January hiatus, Skyrim may have taken the crown in 2012.

2nd place: Borderlands 2 (61 points, 10 first places, 14 appearances)

Released later in the year, Borderlands 2 looked for a time as if it might steal first place at the last moment. Unfortunately for BOLD ERRANDS fans, it ran out of steam a little early and eventually had to settle for second spot. It does have the notable distinction of netting the most first place rankings, with ten, which is even more impressive considering it came out during the busy end-of-year release window.

1st place: Mass Effect 3 (68 points, 6 first places, 19 appearances)

The title of most-discussed game on Screen Play for 2012 goes to the final episode of the groundbreaking sci-fi saga, Mass Effect 3. Releasing early in the year, and not without controversy (how do you like that ending?) Mass Effect 3 nevertheless ate up many hours of our time and sparked many pages of discussion. This is evidenced by its staying power in the charts, with six first places further bolstered by five seconds and three thirds.

2012 was a terrific year for gaming, and as our top ten shows, also a great year for discussing games.

 - Andrew "luverly_5pam" Marshall

 

Screen Play readers can submit articles and game reviews for consideration in Your Turn and Your Review using the email address SPYourTurn@gmail.com. The best blog post published on Screen Play between 1 December 2012 and 31 January 2013, as judged by James Dominguez, will win a PS Vita handheld console from Sony Computer Entertainment. This is a wi-fi unit, and has a recommended retail price of $349. The next prize winner will be announced on Thursday 31 January. Only Australian residents are eligible and the judge's decision is final.

twitter Screen Play is on Twitter: @jamesjdominguez

21 comments so far

  • Excellent article! I love my stats =)
    Any chance of a shared google document or the like with the full listing? Am quite interested in the remaining 134 games that didn't make the list!

    Commenter
    Schmole
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    December 18, 2012, 9:06AM
    • Skyrim was a highlight this year from this list, as I enjoyed many an hour slaying dragons & venturing through the expanse of the land. But the game that got my attention was not a stand alone, but an expansion. The Arma II DayZ expansion is the most fun I have had in an open PVP game ever!! Aside from the hackers that seem to run free & unchallenged, the game brought out emotions that I didn't think a game could. The fear of hearing a zombie nearby when you haven't got a weapon, the joy of finding your mates who have food, drink & a stash of weapons for you, the exhilaration of a fire fight when a bandit eyes you off for your can of Heinz beans, & the disappointment when he kills you & gets them, only to know that you get to start off afresh & survive again! Awesome fun xD

      Commenter
      Indeed
      Date and time
      December 18, 2012, 9:21AM
      • So keen to play DayZ but I don't own a PC. I'm that excited about it, I've been watching video diaries on YouTube of other people playing. I have never wanted to play a game so bad in my life.

        Commenter
        Mawzy81
        Date and time
        December 18, 2012, 1:00PM
      • When you do get to play it, 1st rule is 'Trust no one' as they'll kill you for your Beans!!

        2nd rule is, "Don't shoot an un-silenced weapon in a town", 'cause if you do, you'll have a horde of Z's on your ass in no time!

        3rd rule is, "if you break rule 2, RUN for the hills!!!"

        Seriously though, even though it's still in Aplha, DayZ is far better than WarZ & that's a stand alone!!

        Commenter
        Indeed
        Date and time
        December 18, 2012, 1:50PM
    • I thought Borderlands would be there along with Mass Effect 3, but didn't expect Skyrim to be third. Still need to play Mass Effect 3 sometime.

      Good work 5pam on the stats.

      Commenter
      Joka
      Location
      Holidays
      Date and time
      December 18, 2012, 9:36AM
      • I love the immersion of Skyrim & ME3. The only dissapointment with ME3 was that the game alluded that your choices would have an impact, when they didn't. That said still a very powerful game with well developed characters & NPCs/Sidekicks who you could believe had real lives prior to the events played out. A nice touch is actually seeing all of your weapons stored on your back, no magic invisible backpack ala GTA IV.
        Diablo III still consumes alot of time, as one wag said 'sure you could spend time with the wife or feed the kids but that @#$% won't get you gear'. After getting two characters through Act4 Inferno without resorting to the RMA I'm back to do it again with another class.
        Having to play on Battlenet generally isn't an issue as I like jumping out to the Gold Auction House and seeing when your friends come online is handy; although having to change DNS servers after the last patch was a pain. AlsoBlizzard do you really have to take Battlenet down every Tuesday night?
        I was looking forward to having time in the next few weeks to work on my pile of shame, but after viewing the games list above I think the pile is going to grow larger.

        Commenter
        Gamer Dad
        Date and time
        December 18, 2012, 10:05AM
        • I agree - The stack of shame now has its own little cupboard and shows no sign of shrinking. Although I did watch Mr Bomb complete Deus Ex earlier this year I'm about 12 months behind every new release... haven't even started ME2!! Drooling over FC3 and Borderlands 2 but I can't see that happening any time soon, living vicariously through this blog for now :(

          Commenter
          TBomb
          Date and time
          December 18, 2012, 12:35PM
        • I've taken to calling mine as a "Virus" instead of a pile...

          It just keeps growing expnentially every hear like a living breathing self replicating virus =P

          Commenter
          RocK_M
          Location
          I want chinese take-away!
          Date and time
          December 18, 2012, 4:35PM
      • Great list of games and thanks for your diligence in putting this all togther Lurvley Spam. I enjoy your wrap ups during the year and this full year wrap is icing on the cake.

        Personally Mass Effect 3 was the highlight for me.

        Others on the list I have yet to play and would love to in the near future are Skyrim, Dark Souls, Far Cry 3 and Borderlands 2.

        Commenter
        Knotpossible
        Date and time
        December 18, 2012, 11:35AM
        • Great work 5pam! And a new record for me - I've actually played 4 of the games in the top 10!

          Commenter
          TC
          Date and time
          December 18, 2012, 12:15PM

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