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Mortal Kombat


2011 was an odd year for me. When it started, there were only two games I was really excited for: Batman: Arkham City and Uncharted 3. The latter failed to make my top five because of some seriously wonky shooting mechanics that made me frequently want to throw Nathan Drake out a window, but fortunately, plenty of other games took up the slack.

When standing at the precipice of a new console generation, it’s staggering to think of how far we’ve come since the Xbox 360 and PS3 launched. Just compare Oblivion and Skyrim, and you might think the former came out for the original Xbox. And it’s not over yet. Next year, we get games like BioShock Infinite and Halo 4. So, before saying goodbye to 2011, here are my picks for the games that cost me too many hours of sleep this year.

Marc’s Top 5 of 2011:

#1: The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

Formats: Wii
Publisher: Nintendo
Developer: Nintendo
I didn’t want a Zelda game that completely relied on motion controls. I even postponed dropping it in my system for nearly a week after I got it. What was I thinking?! Skyward Sword stands up to the series’ best games, and it eclipses the rest with the spot-on controls, awesome storytelling, and fantastic twists.

#2: Batman: Arkham City

Formats: Xbox 360, PS3
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
Developer: Rocksteady Studios
My No. 1 pick before I got my hands on Zelda, Arkham City expanded on everything that I loved in the first game. More exploring, more fighting, more wonderful toys! Somehow, Rocksteady made the game work despite loading it up with villains, and they never compromised or convoluted the story. Action-adventure games rarely get better than this.

#3: The Elder Scroll V: Skyrim

Formats: Xbox 360, PS3
Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Developer: Bethesda Game Studios
In most other years, this game would’ve been my No. 1. I don’t recall ever having played a more immersive, more detailed RPG. Bethesda upgraded everything from Oblivion, including the graphics, combat, and user interface. Even though it still launched a little buggy, nothing stopped me—and millions of others—from diving into this masterpiece.

#4: RAGE

Formats: Xbox 360, PS3
Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Developer: id Software
While many critics disagree, for me, RAGE delivered on every promise made. Signature id gameplay, frantic racing, and quality first-person action against a great variety of enemies. No, it didn’t have the most polished story, and it became a little repetitive at times, but few games drew me in and kept me playing like this one.

#5: Mortal Kombat

Formats: Xbox 360, PS3
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
Developer: NeatherRealm
This game makes my top 5 for one reason: The Mortal Kombat reboot made me enjoy a Mortal Kombat game. In the almost 20 years since the first game, this is the first time I actually wanted to keep playing MK. With fluid controls, fantastic animation, and amazing structure—both for the story and in multiplayer—MK was the most pleasant surprise of the year for me.

Marc’s Off-Topic Awards:

Worst 1-2 Punch: Homefront and Red Faction: Armageddon
What happened THQ? At E3 2010, these two games really excited me. But what we received last spring was a one poorly executed game after another, leaving us bummed and wondering what happened. Neither game was a complete bomb, but given the solid ideas and huge hype, they should’ve been much better.

Game Most in Need of Viagra: Duke Nukem Forever
It’s not like I expected a great game. After all, Duke Nukem Forever languished in development hell so long, he could’ve had grandkids. Regardless of the game’s quality, though, I expected something more fun. Instead, the writing was weak, and the controls so broken it was hard to get excited.

The Magic Number Award: THREE
Killzone 3, Gears of War 3, Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception, Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Patapon 3, Arcana Heart 3, Dirt 3, Dungeon Siege III, Dynasty Warriors: Gundam 3, Deus Ex: Human Revolution (the series’ third game), Resistance 3, Just Dance 3, Battlefield 3, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, Serious Sam 3, Assassin’s Creed: Revelations (Assassin’s Creed II – part 3)


What do you guys think of Marc’s picks? Let him know on Twitter (@rkymtngmr) or drop in a comment below!

EGM’s Best of 2011 Coverage

EGM’s Top 25 Games of 2011
Part 1: #25 – #21
Part 2: #20 – #16
Part 3: #15 – #11
Part 4: #10 – #6
Part 5: #5 – #1 (Friday, December 23rd)

EGM Editor’s Choice Awards
Part 1: Eric L. Patterson
Part 2: Ray Carsillo
Part 3: Marc Camron
Part 4: Brandon Justice
Part 5: Matthew Bennett (Friday, December 23rd)
Part 6: Andrew Fitch (Saturday, December 24th)
Part 7: Brady Fiechter (Sunday, December 25th)


About Marc Camron

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Marc somehow survived E3. The crowds were big, the games were loud and somehow he managed to get a sunburn on the top of his big, bald melon. Yet, despite all of this, he had a blast, seeing people he only sees once a year, playing all of the new games, and staying up way past his bedtime. Next year he might even have a beer. Find him on Twitter @RkyMtnGmr