As the seventh console generation comes to a close, I've been looking back over all the "Best Games of the Generation" lists to see if there are any important games that I just never played. I think, for the most part, I'm pretty good. The only blemishes on my record are that I never played Heavy Rain and Dark Souls. Of course, I haven't played EVERYTHING; I know that the GTA and Elder Scrolls games are really great, but they just don't appeal much to me.
So I thought I'd ask: are there any games that you absolutely adored this generation that a good chunk of people might not have gotten around to? Whether they're personal favorites that aren't for everyone (BIT.TRIP COMPLETE!) or really important industry-defining games that might not have gotten as much attention as they deserved (Spelunky?). Obviously we've all played Super Mario Galaxy and Bioshock; I'm looking for the Lost Odysseys (was that game any good?) and Burnout Paradises of the past generation.
To start off, I'll throw in Rhythm Heaven Fever. I think Guillaume said it once on the podcast: that game is a thirty-dollar disk of pure joy. And it isn't even thirty dollars anymore! You can get it for dirt cheap! Seriously though, this might be the single most fun game I've ever played. Not everyone will adore it as much as me, but if you've ever been into rhythm games or WarioWare, definitely check it out. I guarantee it will make you smile.
Your turn! Best overlooked games of the past generation? Anything goes.
Infinite Undiscovery This game! UGHHHHHHHHHH I LOVE IT! Gameplay is a bunch of fine with plenty of different moves to choose from and the variety in Characters is good as well. Gameplay looks good too, really the whole game looks good outside of cutscenes which is unfortunately where the game is let down. But the gameplay is fantastic, story is great and music is lovely.
ilo milo Cute and charming indie puzzle game. Bought it on a whim this year and was surprised. Fun and with some inventive puzzles.
Yeah, you know what? Strikers Charged was a really fun game. Good call. It had a nice style to it too. A lot of Mario party/sports games kind of have a weird unwholesome generic feel to them, but Strikers Charged had great harmony with its presentation. The character designs, their behaviors, the music... it all added to this sort of "gritty Mario reboot" feeling that was really cool. Leave it to Next Level Games to do a bang-up job.
I agree about Spelunky, that's why I put a question mark after it, haha. It really is a game-changer though. If you take a look at all the latest indie games, a good chunk of them are doing the randomly-generated roguelike thing. I think we'll look back on it as one of the most important games of the generation.
I'd say that the original Dead Space is one of those games that could have been overlooked, but thankfully wasn't and got special treatment. It feels like an A game for whatever reason, you know? Not AAA. And I say that's a good thing, the original Dead Space had just the right amount of presentation value (whatever that means). Though I also liked how 2 ramped things up. Gonna play 3 here in a couple weeks.
I remember you raving about Max Payne 3. Worth playing if I haven't played the first two?
Deadly Premonition: The Director's Cut is on Steam, and it's on sale right now for 13 bucks. Definitely check it out, I think you'll love it. The Director's Cut is supposed to have made the combat (which was the biggest problem with the game) a bit more bearable, and made a few other changes as well.
Infinite Undiscovery! That was another one of those JRPGish games I totally didn't pay any attention to (alongside Lost Odyssey and Valkyria Chronicles) that inspired me to make this thread. I'll look into that one too. I remember them talking about it on IGN's Xbox 360 podcast back in the day and making fun of the name. "How do you undiscover something?" And then they'd talk about Lost for 45 minutes.
Simba recommended ilo milo to me about a year ago. I tried the demo out and enjoyed it quite a bit; it's a very charming game, almost Nintendo-like. Anyone who liked Pushmo should check it out.
Anyone here played Lost Planet? How was that? Apparently Lost Planet 3 came out this year (or last year, I don't even know) and absolutely no one knew about it or cared. I remember hearing a lot about the first game.
I feel like some of the game being mentioned are hardly overlooked, Okami? It won GOTY from IGN! I don't think GOTY winners from a major site should be eligible for "overlooked" gems. Dead Space? A game that sold millions and spawned 2 sequels?
@Secret_Tunnel I complete missed the similarities between it and Pushmo. How on earth did I do that! It does have a certain Nintendo charm to it as well. It had a DLC pack as well which I have yet to play but I probably will at some point.
I find Infinite Undiscovery to be what JRPGs should have turned into when they went 3D. Xenoblade and it both took similar approaches when it came to combat. IMO, if they combined the two games I would be in heaven.
I don't have any statistics to back it up, but it seems to me that Okami is well known, but few people actually own it. I'd guess that less than a third of the people who know of Okami have actually played it.
@Zero But on a board like this or Neogaf do you really think there are a lot of people who have not been exposed to Okami? Everyone who would want to play it has, especially after it got remade or Wii and for PS3, and after all those versions I'm sure this game sold at least a million or more. It just doesn't seem to me like an obscure game that was overlooked, but that's just me.
Anyone who decides to play Deadly Premonition on PC should use DPfix; it's by the same guy who fixed the resolution/etc. issues with the PC version of Dark Souls, and it adds a bunch of features/bug fixes/etc. that should have been in the PC version in the first place. However one decides to play Deadly Premonition though, I recommend it; it's one of the most unique, imaginative games I've played
Zero, you should really play XCOM, since you love tactical games like Valkyria Chronicles and the like
Here are some games from this past generation that I feel deserve more attention:
XCOM (Enemy Unknown is what I played, but any new players should get Enemy Within, as it adds more features and enemy types and bug fixes and stuff)
Spec Ops: The Line - This is an incredibly well-done subversion of modern military shooters and the tropes they rely on. I highly recommend this to anyone wanting a good, interesting video game story.
Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers - This game was seemingly doomed from the start; it's a (mostly) single-player non-RPG spinoff of a multiplayer spinoff of a single-player RPG series, which was barely advertised and was released (at least in North America) the day after Christmas. It also admittedly doesn't do the best job of explaining its mechanics/scope, which led to a lot of mediocre reviews. I think it's a shame, because this is easily my favorite Wii game I've played (not counting Resident Evil 4). It's an unusual mix of action, adventure, and sandbox exploration, with some minigames thrown in and my personal favorite usage of motion/IR controls on the Wii. I especially liked this game for the level of interactivity it allowed within its environments. It reminded me somewhat of games like the original Zelda in that regard. If one is interested in an action-adventure sandbox game that makes good use of the Wii's unique capabilities, then The Crystal Bearers is it. There aren't too many other games quite like this.
Alpha Protocol - I always found this game's concept interesting from the moment I learned about it prior to release; it's an action-RPG with a conversation system somewhat like Mass Effect's, but with much more varied choices, and layers of positive/negative consequences that come about as a result of them. Whereas Mass Effect pretty much just asks the player if they want to be a polite, nice person or a rude, mean asshole, Alpha Protocol allows for a much more nuanced means of interacting with characters, and they'll remember how you treat them, which directly influences their actions, and thus the overall story. Alpha Protocol also introduced timed responses, which force the player to respond sooner rather than sitting back and calmly thinking about what to do next; later games such as Telltale's The Walking Dead would also feature this sort of timed conversation system. I also personally love the setting; there aren't nearly enough RPGs that have a modern-day setting, let alone ones with a secret agent/spy theme. Alpha Protocol received a lot of criticism, in particular for its combat, and while I can understand complaints regarding it, I personally really enjoyed its combat quite a bit. Just be sure not to approach it like a shooter, because it isn't one. It's a unique RPG with some action elements, some stealth elements, and the occasional goofiness that should appeal to fans of Hideo Kojima or Suda 51
Surgeon Simulator 2013 - This is hands-down one of the funniest, and funnest, games I've ever played. It is so amazing.
Shadows of the Damned - This is the Resident Evil 4 sequel I wish 5 was. While it isn't quite as incredible as Resident Evil 4, Shadows of the Damned is still an amazing game that I highly recommend to anyone who enjoys surreal, comedic horror/action/shooters.
Disaster: Day of Crisis - This is one non-North American Wii game I wish had gotten more attention. I love its over-the-top story and presentation; it feels almost like a parody of Metal Gear Solid at times. Anyone outside of North America, or any North American Wii-owners looking into import games, would be well-advised to check this out.
I'll definitely back Deadly Premonition, one of the most memorable and charming games of the generation. There's a lot to love, if you're willing to look past a lot of the gameplay and technical shortcomings.
I'd also mention Wario Land: Shake It! With the 2D platformer renaissance of this generation, it doesn't get mentioned a lot, but I just played it back during Backlaugust this year, and I really had a great time playing it. It's a ton of fun.
Not sure if it qualifies as "overlooked", but I was also very impressed with Mark of the Ninja. One of the few truly great stealth games of this generation, and a very fun and creative one at that.
You just sold me on Alpha Protocol! I'll give it a shot.
I totally second the recommendation for Spec Ops. I think it works better if you go in looking for a cliche military shooter, but it's still excellent either way. I've been recommending it to my CoD-loving friends.
I played The Crystal Bearers for a bit this past summer, but then fell out of it for some reason. Hm, I might have to go back to that.
Shadows of the Damned was pretty enjoyable. Like you said, not as good as RE4, but still... enjoyable.
Some people already mentioned some of the games I would say, so I'll pick Rune Factory Frontier. It isn't without its faults, but adding some action-RPG elements to the Harvest Moon formula was a brilliant idea that gives a lot more purpose and satisfaction out of the farming since you actually use what you grow in making food and equipment instead of just selling it for money. I know this isn't the first Rune Factory game but it's a darn good one.
Really though, I kind of feel like the entire Wii itself was overlooked by many. I know that's weird to say given how many units the system sold, but even with that, I feel like a lot of its games, even some of the popular ones, were overlooked by people who would enjoy them due to the system's stigma from the media, having "last-gen specs," and "Wii has no games."
For games already mentioned, I'll second these ones: Rhythm Haven Fever - Good pick Secret_Tunnel! Definitely an excellent, unique game that's more challenging than its simple mechanics would have you believe. A Boy and His Blob - Can be a little slow, but still a fun and charming puzzle game. Fluidity - Like Metroid with a puddle of water. Little King's Story - I wish the story were better, but there's nothing little about this game. Packed full of weirdness and discovery. Kirby's Epic Yarn - Not sure if this is really overlooked, though I have seen it passed on because it isn't a "true Kirby game." Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers - I'm sure being a spin-off of a spin-off did this game no favours, which is too bad, because it's a rather unique game in a world where that's increasingly difficult to do. It has some technical issues, but the nice story and fun mechanics are enough to make up for it. Wario Land Shake It! - If this had come after NSMBWii it probably would have sold better; too bad Nintendo didn't put it on the Nintendo Selects line.