2011 - Missing Games


It is inevitable that each year a handful of games will get lost in the shuffle. Some of them will find their way into my shopping basket only to be sent straight to my backlog pile upon being purchased, momentarily put on hold but guaranteed an eventual play. This year's collection includes Assassin's Creed Revelations, Deus Ex Human Revolution and Red Faction Armageddon, which will soon be bolstered by Sonic Generations, Dark Souls and Saints Row the Third thanks to the bringer of games, St Nicholas.

Other titles are not quite as fortunate, left unclaimed in Amazon baskets and unlikely to ever get a chance to impress. Come the traditionally quiet periods (late winter/early spring and mid-summer), and depending on price and what else I have lined up, I may finally buy them. If not, they will fade from memory as they fall off the bottom of hastily scribbled wish-lists, destined to be missed entirely.

2011 has seen a number of games pass me by that, money and time permitting, I would like to have played. Battlefield 3 is probably the highest profile, though I have every intention of picking up a copy at some point next year, so it doesn't really belong here. Dead Island, however, is the poster boy for 2011's missing games; a game that I wanted to play, but there was always one or two other titles that took precedence. As we stand on the edge of a new year, I struggle to imagine when I will get around to making a zombie amends.

It looked like buckets of fun - a straight-edged Dead Rising only spread across a far larger expanse - and the kind of game that I’d be willing to forgive subpar production values and gameplay mechanics, but it just wasn't to be. With no end in sight for my Skyrimming, and with Assassin's Creed Revelations, Dark Souls and Saints Row the Third all on the slate for the next few months, I doubt I'll be begging for another sandbox adventure anytime soon.


El Shaddai certainly looked the part with its unique visuals, but I always had a sneaking suspicion that they masked what was otherwise a very shallow game, which meant that even at a measly £12 there was always something else I'd rather play or pay for. Rayman Origins shares Shaddai's visual flair and I hear that it’s not lacking in the gameplay department, but with the exception of old school Sonic I have never been a huge fan of platformers and Rayman would need to catch me in the right mood, which it has yet to do. Atlus' Catherine had my attention when everyone in Japan and the US seemed to be talking about it, but it's ever slipping release date here in Europe means that I have all but lost interest in a game that I would play only for curiosity's sake.

I was intrigued by Rage, but thanks to the seen-it-all-before setting and gameplay I kept pushing my intended purchase further back, and now I'd be surprised if I ever found time to play it. Sticking with first person shooters, I had decided that I would give the Halo franchise one last shot by way of the newly polished Halo Combat Evolved, that is until MW3's multiplayer enthralled far longer than expected, sating my appetite for shooters in 2011. And while we are on the subject of the 360, I lost count of the number of times I intended to buy Deadly Premonition (a 2010 release, but a game I wasn't aware of until this year) only to come away with something less interesting, but probably more entertaining.

Karaoke sims aside, my Nintendo consoles didn't get much of a look-in this year. Xenoblade Chronicles remains the RPG I'll never get to play as, despite Europe's good fortune in getting a localized release, my Japanese Wii is incompatible with PAL games and frankly I need a UK Wii like a bull needs tits. Ghost Trick on the DS rounds out this unfortunate bunch of near misses. Despite having blogged about it numerous times, my intention of buying a copy for my trip to Japan in September came to naught. With my 3DS only days away, Ghost Trick's moment has most definitely passed.

So which games did you miss this year that you had intended playing, and what are the chances of you catching up?

Comments

  1. Well, I've got an unopened copy of Ninokuni sitting here, but it's only that way because I'm in the middle of moving across the country, and there's just no way to deal with a complicated import and its giant spellbook in my current state of boxes and luggage.

    I think I actually managed to acquire and play everything that made my list this year. Even the imports. But I don't platinum or even finish most things like you do, and I had lucky finances this fall. I only really managed to hit everything by gaming with a shotgun.

    But, you know, it's funny, these last couple of weeks, I've been taking a hard look at what I bought this year compared to what I really spent time with, and I'd definitely say that 2011 is about the games I didn't play. I will be skipping a LOT more sequels in the years ahead. This was the year a lot of genres and franchises finally burned me out.

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  2. Seems like we are missing a lot of the same games haha. I really wanted to pick up Battlefield 3 but a lot of my friends that were going to get it changed there mind at the last minute which actually wasn't a bad thing because I could not afford it at the time anyway. Dead Island looked interesting but I just could not convince myself to spend $60 on it back then. Might pick it up when it drops in price a bit more. Same thing with Rayman Origins, once the price is right it will be mine im sure. It wasn't until recently that I realized how good 2011 has been.

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  3. some of the games you missed are games that i wished i missed. i bought both rage and dead island full price and was very disappointed in both. i didn't miss anything and ended up with less money and some crappy games.

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  4. Rayman is the one I want the most right now. I am hoping to get it for Christmas. A couple of others I'd like to get at some point are the new Kirby for Wii, the newest Prof. Layton over here and... hmmm... maybe a few others. I will need to get to some of the 3DS games when I get a 3DS too. Like you I have a quite a few sitting here that I need to take care of as well.

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  5. @ Thirdrail - Good luck with the move. Packing, unpacking and reorganising your video games is half the fun of moving. Actually, it might be the only fun part.

    How are you finding Monster Hunter? Is that one of the franchises that you have become tired of?

    @ Killa - 2011 was full of really good games, but I don't think there was a great one that I will remember for years to come.

    I reckon I'll get BF3 in the Spring, though i'm concerned that by that time multiplayer will be full of pros and I'll just get slaughtered!

    @ superfriar - Rage and Dead Island were always wait-and-see games for me. Rage no longer interests me, but I hope I find time for DI at some point in 2012.

    @ Trip - I have spoken to a few people who are getting Rayman for xmas - seems to be a popular present choice. I always equate platformers with Christmas.

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  6. I've been pretty lucky with the MH timing. I came in at Unite(2G), fell in love, and played that on and off (with more on than off) for most of 2009. Then Tri came, and it was great, but it was very short, and then two iterations of Portable 3rd, which borders on being a tutorial. So, really, Unite is still the only time I've asked for a meal and gotten and meal. Since then it's all just been Monster Hunting snacking, until 3G.

    3G is finally a return to the scale and difficulty that makes for true monster hunting, so I'm very happy with it. And it's a much better fit with the 3DS than I imagined.

    The longer I play with the slide pad the more I agree with you on clunky. I don't understand why it narrows in the lower sections I need to hold and widens in the upper sections where it should taper. It's like it's been designed to mimic that feeling of soap about to spit out of your hands. I think I may modify mine by fixing some kind of grips to the underside.

    I'm so transient by nature that my games live in a big gym bag all the time! I'm that guy who has the full arcade set up in the hotel room 30 minutes after check in, but may or may not have remembered to bring clothes.

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  7. can't really blame anyone for missing anything this year considering how much came out. here I am trying my hardest to think of the games I missed and all that comes to mind is Darksiders and a few others of similar ilk. only real game I said I would get this year and never did has been Battlefield 3, which I cannot lie, the mulitplayer is good but not really my taste which is one of two reasons I was gonna check it out. the story, from what I heard, followed in COD's footsteps so I just couldnt help but think "why not just get MW3?" which I have yet to do but wouldnt be surprised is I happened to pick it up on a spur of the moment buy. other than that I'm very happy with the games I got this year, especially glad I picked up Skyrim, wow what an amazing game even with the few bugs and glitches I've encountered.
    If you can you must check out Zelda Skyward Sword, not sure if I hold it higher than OOT but dam if its not close. so there is one hell of a reason to dust off that Wii and get them arms waggling! lol

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  8. @ Thirdrail - Good to hear that you are getting on with the new Monster Hunter. If/when it comes to the West I think I'll pick it up. It would be the first Monster Hunter I'll have sunk any significant time into, though i have always admired the series from afar.

    @ Daydream D - I hear that BF3's single player is just a poor imitation of MW. When i buy BF3, it will be for the multiplayer.

    Loving Skyrim too. Not sure at what point I'm supposed to stop playing it and move onto something else. There is just too much to do!

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  9. I missed way too many games... Dissidia 012, God Eater Burst, 3rd Birthday, and Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together were all added to my PSP pile of shame this year. Yakuza 4 joined Yakuza 3 in the PS3 shame pile. LA Noire, Bulletstorm, Child of Eden, Gears of War 3, 3D Dot Game Heroes, and Nier are all waiting for a chance to shine as well. I should go play some games right now...

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  10. May I suggest making Tactics Ogre and Yakuza 4 your priorities. Two of my favourite games this year.

    I also missed out on 3rd Birthday. It seems to be really cheap online now, so I may pick it up though i have no idea when I'd actually play it!

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