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EGM’s Best of 2012:
Part Four: #10 ~ #06

Posted on December 29, 2012 AT 08:00am

It’s day four of EGM’s top 25 games of 2012, and we’re now here: the top 10. It’s never easy picking the ten best game among any year’s releases, but all five of these titles stood out as some of the best that the last 365 days had to offer. From sweeping epics of exploration, to advances in the stealth genre, to a juggernaut that keeps getting bigger and better, slots #10 through #6 on our list all made our lives as gamers a little better this year.

EGM’s Top 25: #10 ~ #06

#10: Dishonored

Publisher: Bethesda Sotworks
Developer: Arkane Studios
Platforms: Xbox 360, PS3, PC

Every once in a while an original IP comes along that tries to push gaming’s boundaries. Today, there are far too few open-world games that let players approach objectives any way they would like. Dishonored encourages you to try different approaches to every puzzle, and even makes it possible to get through the whole game without killing a single foe. Though some wonky control issues keep this from ascending to the top of this year’s list, everything from the story to the setting to the multitude of special abilities you can procure gives the game a unique feel. It brings to mind another franchise that started a little shaky before exploding with its sequel, one that features an assassin named Altair. Let’s hope Dishonored II can make a similar leap. – Marc Camron

#09: Hitman: Absolution

Publisher: Square Enix
Developer: IO Interactive
Platforms: Xbox 360, PS3, PC

Like most sequels that try to shake up their franchises, Hitman: Absolution wound up being a love it or hate it affair, but the EGM crew (mostly) fell into the former camp. The sheer wealth of creative ways to dispatch your targets turned every level into a veritable sandbox of death—and that goes doubly for Contracts Mode. Want to crush a guy with a piano while wearing a chicken suit? When you’re Agent 47, anything is possible. —Josh Harmon

#08: Assassin’s Creed III

Publisher: Ubisoft
Developer: Ubisoft Montreal
Platforms: Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC, Wii U

Ubisoft had to pull something special out of the bag with Assassin’s Creed III, and what they presented was coated in gold, diamonds, plus several other precious jewels. Improved combat—gone is the one button massacre,—free-running, side-quests, graphics, the list goes on. If it hadn’t been for several bugs that were present at launch and the slightly flat story this could easily have ended up challenging for the top spot. —Matthew Bennett

#07: Call of Duty: Black Ops II

Publisher: Activision
Developer: Treyarch
Platforms: Xbox 360, PS3, PC, Wii U

For many years, the Call of Duty franchise has been accused of being cookie-cutter, similar to sports games in that we get the same game every year with just a couple tweaks. This year, however, Black Ops II bucked the trend. Branching storylines afforded the campaign replayability. The new Pick-10 system in multiplayer helped maximize your killing efficiency like never before. And Zombies mode was so large it needed three modes of its own to contain it all. Simply put, this was the best Call of Duty experience since the first Modern Warfare, if not ever. —Ray Carsillo

#06: Journey

Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Developer: Thatgamecompany
Platforms: PS3

Journey, like Flower, is interactive art. Unfortunately, its unconventionality causes it to catch a lot of heat. In all its elegant simplicity, Journey, as a game, manages to perfectly embody its title.  This is not a travelogue. This is no scenic romp through some exotic landscape. Crossing the desert in Journey is lonely. It’s daunting, and often seems endless. But all this serves to create such a rich atmosphere that when players do finally encounter another traveler and interact with them, all while overcoming severely limited communication, they experience genuine excitement—which is pretty powerful stuff. —Chris Holzworth

EGMNOW’s Best of 2012 Awards Schedule

Editor’s Choice: Ray Carsillo Dec
Editor’s Choice: Josh Harmon
Editor’s Choice: Andrew Fitch Dec
Editor’s Choice: Brandon Justice
Editor’s Choice: Eric L. Patterson Dec
Editor’s Choice: Chris Holzworth
Editor’s Choice: Matthew Bennett Dec
Editor’s Choice: Marc Camron
Best of 2012: #25 ~ #21 Dec
Best of 2012: #20 ~ #16
Best of 2012: #15 ~ #11 Dec
Best of 2012: #10 ~ #06
EGMNOW’s Best Games of 2012: #05 ~ #01
Tobias Bruckner Memorial Awards

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