2012: A blessing for gamers (so quit your whining!)

by Harry Hughes Featured 29 Comments 39 Votes 2251 Views 28/11/2012 Back to Articles

I’m going to be frank here -- I am astonished by those who constantly feel the need to tell me that this year has been shocking for gamers. On this very site, I’ve seen cries of disappointment at 2012’s offerings, and I simply can’t make sense of it. 2012 really has been one of the best of the millennium for gamers -- anyone who denies this is trolling or blind.

Perhaps my strongest motivation to write this article was a friend telling me that he “can’t wait for the Steam sales, because some cheap indie games will make a year worth of shitty games worth it” (exact quote). As an avid indie gamer, I was happy to see some support for the smaller studios out there. However, this year is one of the first where I have truly embraced the more mainstream offerings, and to discount this year’s efforts in big-name titles is simply foolish. Here’s why:

Assassin’s Creed 3, Black Mesa, Borderlands 2, Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, DayZ, Diablo 3, Dishonoured, FIFA 13, Guild Wars 2, Halo 4, Hitman: Absolution, Mass Effect 3, Natural Selection 2, New Super Mario Bros. 2, Orcs Must Die! 2, Pandora’s Tower, Pokemon: Black and White 2, Sleeping Dogs, The Last Story, Torchlight 2, The Witcher 2 (consoles), and X-COM: Enemy Unknown.

That’s just off the top of my head, and only includes games that have already been released or found their feet throughout this year. If you look closely, you’ll find there’s at least two or three games for everyone in that list, be you a Nintendo fanboy, a FPS fanatic, or an RPG player. Personally, I don’t fit into any of the above categories exclusively -- and still I have played, been immersed in, and completed, eleven of the above games.

Yes, eleven. That’s pretty solid for a gamer who otherwise might buy one Battlefield title per year and just play Indie titles and retro games for the rest of the time. If someone like me can get into all of the above games, why can the average gamer struggle? This chain of thought leads me to the belief that anyone who is disappointed with 2012’s games simply hasn’t given them a fair go.

The fact is, this year’s offerings have been more diverse than in previous years, and all of the above titles have performed very favourably with critics. And there’s still 33 days remaining in this year.

In those 33 days, Far Cry 3 will be released, in addition to Nintendo’s new platform, the Wii U, which itself has an incredibly strong launch lineup (in my opinion, the best in three generations). In fact, in this lineup are the likes Scribblenauts, ZombiU, New Super Mario Bros. U and Nintendoland, all original titles which are in the green on Metacritic. If anyone can tell me none of these four games are worth playing, I’m not sure what is..

If anybody can truly say they are not appeased by at least a handful of the above twenty-something titles, I would be shocked. Even then, this is just a snapshot of this year’s mainstream titles -- there is so, so much more on offer. So if you’re one of the many who constantly whines about how bad this year has been, do the rest of us a favour: consider all of the above titles, and if you choose to ignore them, look at the smaller releases. I can promise you there’s at least a dozen titles you’ll be interested in all up. If that can’t convince you that this year was amazing (and not a flop), then I don’t know what will...

By Harry Hughes - Bio

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Tags: Gamers smell unappreciative
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2012: A blessing for gamers (so quit your whining!) Comments

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i agree its been awesome.. those people that are complaining must be trolling.. or they need to go read books [Shifty]
There have been a lot of good games this year, but no "wow" games or moments in games like Skyrim.

Ben said: There have been a lot of good games this year, but no "wow" games or moments in games like Skyrim.


That's the thing I truly don't understand though.. why does a calender year NEED a 95+ game to be considered great? What is wrong with a lot of 85-90 titles?

In fact, why are games that receive 90/100 not "wow" titles anyway? 9/10 to me indicates near-perfection *shrug*

I suppose gamers these days have a wild perception of what sort of score makes a game good.. Seriously, most think a 7 means "do not buy" [Facepalm]
Personally I do not see what was disappointing, nor have I noticed much complaining but I don't look around that much *shrug*

Anyone that says this was a bad year is just overly nostalgic imo.

Not to mention the Wii U will be released this year which I'm looking forward to for future games. =D

Harry said:

Ben said: There have been a lot of good games this year, but no "wow" games or moments in games like Skyrim.


That's the thing I truly don't understand though.. why does a calender year NEED a 95+ game to be considered great? What is wrong with a lot of 85-90 titles?
In fact, why are games that receive 90/100 not "wow" titles anyway? 9/10 to me indicates near-perfection *shrug*
I suppose gamers these days have a wild perception of what sort of score makes a game good.. Seriously, most think a 7 means "do not buy"



Interesting that you brought up scores. I'm not talking about them at all.

By "wow" game I mean a game that had something that amazed me, even if it was only briefly -- like horse riding scene in Red Dead.

Hasn't happened to me this year. Maybe Dishonored if anything, but everything else has felt a little too safe. I've done it before.

Ben said: There have been a lot of good games this year, but no "wow" games or moments in games like Skyrim.


Kid Icarus was a "wow" game for me. One of the few I'd give a 10/10.

Ben said: Interesting that you brought up scores. I'm not talking about them at all.
By "wow" game I mean a game that had something that amazed me, even if it was only briefly -- like horse riding scene in Red Dead.
Hasn't happened to me this year. Maybe Dishonored if anything, but everything else has felt a little too safe. I've done it before.


Ah, I see what you mean now. I just assumed your reference to Skyrim was about its reception (94 on Metacritic.. pretty much universally loved).

I've had a few moments like that this year. A few solo boss fights on Borderlands 2 went for over forty-five minutes.. beating them and seeing loot explode everywhere was a "wow" moment (having said that, it's probably for different reasons than your Red Dead moment)

There were also a few emotional moments in Borderlands 2 which really made me appreciate the effort that went into the story this time around.

Other than that, I've found several moments in other titles I listed in the article. However, I did put in several dozen hours into many of these titles, so it's probably a little more likely for someone like me to find these sorts of moments.

Recently though, some of the episodes of Hitman have wowed me.. maybe I just appreciate the developers' efforts a lot more now that I have dabbled in game development myself? Who knows.
Totally agree with you @ben there has been no real wow moments for me this year neither.
It's just been a load of sequels with all of them bringing nothing new to the table just improvements that were to be expected.
There's just been no innovation this year, new consoles are needed imo and with them some new ips.

Blob said:

Ben said: There have been a lot of good games this year, but no "wow" games or moments in games like Skyrim.


Kid Icarus was a "wow" game for me. One of the few I'd give a 10/10.



Still need to play this.
No "wow" moments this year, but great games nonetheless. Every year has its ups and downs. Fewer risks, but still a great year for gamers.
borderlands 2 wowed me im like 140hours in [Derp]
another then the wiiU there hav'nst been any good games that have come out
persona 4 golden... enough said:P na but its been alright. Just a few more jrpg's. which are coming next year and i am happy.

M@ndyz said: borderlands 2 wowed me im like 140hours in



I'm yet to get into it, played a few hours and got bored like most games out this year.
Halo 4 and Dishonored have been the big standouts for me this year. 2012 was a good year, the only reason there's a lot more dismissal of this year's line-up than usual is due to the sheer quality and quantity of games released last year (Skyrim, Uncharted 3, LPB2, Gears of War 3, Battlefield 3, The Witcher 2, Xenoblade, etc, etc) which are still fresh in our fanboy minds.
Diablo 3....uhhhhhhhhhhh

it was the single biggest disappointment for me personally

wo1f said: Diablo 3....uhhhhhhhhhhh
it was the single biggest disappointment for me personally


Were you a fan of the original 2? Avid Diablo players seem to dislike this with a passion, but those new to the series really seemed to enjoy D3. Its general reception is what earned it a spot on that list. :)

OllyEbbz said:

M@ndyz said: borderlands 2 wowed me im like 140hours in


I'm yet to get into it, played a few hours and got bored like most games out this year.


IMO you're expectations are too high, Borderlands 2 is a GOTY contender.
2012 was probably disappointing if you weren't a PC gamer. Tons of great stuff this year.

Harry said:
That's the thing I truly don't understand though.. why does a calender year NEED a 95+ game to be considered great? What is wrong with a lot of 85-90 titles?


I think that's because a lot of people can't afford to buy a whole bunch of games (especially with Australian prices *obligatory grumble*) and they want one that they know is flipping amazing to sink their money into.
i thought it was a great year with the standout's being Borderlands 2 and Far Cry 3 oh and Halo 4

Carterr said:

OllyEbbz said:

M@ndyz said: borderlands 2 wowed me im like 140hours in


I'm yet to get into it, played a few hours and got bored like most games out this year.


IMO you're expectations are too high, Borderlands 2 is a GOTY contender.



Maybe but that's not saying much.
I'm not saying it's a bad game in anyway but after putting in over 100hrs into the original Borderlands not so long ago I just couldn't be arsed for more of the same. The game just grows old real quick.

My GoTYs if I had to choose would be ZombieU, Halo 4, Farcry 3 and Dishonoured.
Most of the decent games this year are sequels. They haven't really released anything knew which has been absolutely excellent.

Despite this, I still don't know why people are complaining - it wasn't too bad.
More of the same -_-
If anything XBL and psn had a better year/ releases

stonecold said: More of the same
If anything XBL and psn had a better year/ releases


2012: A blessing for gamers (so quit your whining!)

Pilkingbod said:

stonecold said: More of the same
If anything XBL and psn had a better year/ releases



No, just being realistic. Most are all sequels.

X-COM was good, but not better then the original.
Most releases this year are sequels?
Are you high?
I really enjoyed this year.

Professor Layton, Pokemon Black/White 2, The Wii U, New Super Mario Bros. 2 + U and Paper Mario is coming in 7 days. I know it wasn't released this year, but I also played Bayonetta for the first time along with Pikmin 2 and also played a load of retro games I've picked up.

In terms of new releases, there wasn't a lot that interested me, but I sure had a lot of fun with other games. Quite a memorable year, this one.

Desi said: 2012 was probably disappointing if you weren't a PC gamer. Tons of great stuff this year.


I agree
There was Fez actually. That was probably the most enjoyable game I played.

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