eGamer Awards 2012: Best Action Game
As always, this genre was filled with amazing titles, and it continues to excite and inspire us. The thing we all love about the action and action adventure genre is that there’s always a handful of top quality games to look forward to, and here we’ll be taking a look at the best of them to determine which title stands above all others. First, let’s go through the rundown explaining what this award is about.
The action adventure genre is usually the place to be for massive production values, epic cinematic experiences and over-the-top action and flare. It’s undoubtedly a grand genre with tremendously high expectations and quality, and only the games that show excellence, go the extra mile or truly make their mark on the entire genre will make it to the top here. It’s perhaps one of the more bold categories, with a wide variety of elements to consider varying from game to game. However, in the end, the game that will walk away with the trophy will be judged as the best and most complete experience overall.
Hitman: Absolution was a sure highlight of this year, returning the original assassin to us in all of his bald glory. The series has been on a six-year hiatus, and we weren’t really expecting Absolution to be exactly like the last game in the series. Of course, it had to move forward, and the result was a game that we felt was a natural evolution of the series and, despite its few faults, it gave us far too many reasons to keep coming back for more, and ultimately was one of the year’s best games. Some of the moments in this game went on to become personal favourites of select members of the team, and really it gave us just about everything we could want in both a Hitman game and an action adventure title.
Sleeping Dogs was a game that was full of entertainment, and it hit the sweet spot for any fan of sandbox games. We thought that it was a shining example of how to make a game in this genre. Sure, it may have felt familiar and didn’t break new grounds, but its execution was top notch, and it was very good at doing what it did. You’d have been crazy not to have given the game a chance, and it really deserves praise for the way that it was packed with variety and fun activities. We felt that this was yet another welcome surprise of the year, and it definitely earned its spot on our nominees list.
Dishonored was one of the most hyped games of this year, and that played as much to its advantage as it did to its disadvantage. Still, the result was an excellent game that left us completely satisfied. While we do agree that a number of improvements and additions in certain areas could definitely have made this game even better, it was a damn fine game already. Begging you to play it twice, Dishonored really did do a lot to make your purchase feel worth it, and we admire it for what it was: a great game. We rather easily considered it to be a high point of this year, and an awesome entry into the action adventure genre. In the end, it did more than its fair share to earn its spot on our nominees list.
Darksiders II was admirably an improvement over its predecessor in many ways, making it feel like a true sequel and a great offering overall. Sure, you may have seen a lot of it before, but what was there was enticing enough to keep you playing it for large amounts of hours. We felt that it was an honest attempt at a game that entertains you and makes you feel rewarded for playing it, delivering satisfying action, well-constructed puzzles and engaging gameplay backed by solid mechanics. The impressive amount of game content in here ensured that we spent tons of time with it, all of which felt worth it. Darksiders II gave us what we wanted, and was completely satisfying in all the ways that count.
Lollipop Chainsaw was a special game, and in many ways it was hard to forget. It was pure fun at its finest, and it didn’t take itself very seriously, delivering an entertaining ride that hardly took a step in the wrong direction. It was an outstanding effort that grew on us the more we played it, and it was just packed with humour, liveliness, awesome style and presentation and a quirky nature that gave it plenty of charm. Many would have looked down on this game because of its concept, or dismissed it for being silly, but to them we’d say that they were missing out on a great and highly entertaining game.
It wasn’t Darksiders II, because the game unfortunately had a number of flaws and didn’t do everything as well as it thought it did. While we were satisfied what we got, no doubt, we did feel that there were parts of the game that could have been done better, and of course other nominees stood out more.
Lollipop Chainsaw didn’t walk away with the prize, and while there is little to fault it for, when looking at the game overall we did feel that it could have done better with its graphics, and there were aspects of the game that could often frustrate. We don’t want to take away from it, and it was mostly small margins.
Sleeping Dogs didn’t win the prize either, and while we very much enjoyed the game, we felt that it mostly played it safe, and lacked a bit of creativity. Sure, not every game needs to do something new, but a more stronger offering in our nominees list ended up wowing us often, which gives it an edge.
This may surprise a number of people, but Dishonored didn’t end up winning, even though it did pose a strong argument. The bottom line is because we felt that it didn’t reach its full potential, and there were things it could have improved on. Our complaints are few, sure, but our winner did enough to rise above it, and in the end the decision ended up being mostly unanimous.
Hitman: Absolution was the stand-out action game for us this year, and was simply an excellent and memorable game overall. Some members of our team had their favourite moments in gaming this year with Absolution, and it ticked all the right boxes in giving us a thrilling, constantly enjoyable and all-round awesome game. The game’s few faults didn’t stop it from being downright awesome, and its continued updates are ensuring that the playing experience is getting that much better. We were also particularly proud of the game’s unique take on social multiplayer with its fantastic Contracts mode, and it was a sure winner for the game and a great step in the right direction. Overall, Hitman: Absolution delivered in all the ways that mattered, and it was a glorious return for the famous bald assassin. All of this makes it our choice for the best action slash action adventure game of 2012.