Author: Trent Fingland

2010 in Review: Not a Top 10 List!

Lara Croft and the Gaurdian of Light Screenshot

Since all my esteemed colleagues seem to be doing it, I feel compelled to slap together thoughtfully craft a year-end assessment of my own. As there enough "Top 10 of 2010" lists to make a "Top 10 'Top 10 of 2010' lists" list, I won't be making one of those. Instead, I'll just ramble about some trends of 2010 and release you unharmed back to the Internet wilderness.

Style Savvy Review

Strong Enough for a Man, Made for a Woman

Style Savvy Screenshot

HIGH Witnessing customer after customer go gaga over my ensembles.

LOW Realizing that their taste was dictated almost exclusively by brand.

WTF There are two men in the whole game: One is the store owner/love interest, the other is his butler.

Sports Champions Review

A Game in a Tech Demo's Clothing

Sports Champions Screenshot

HIGH The impossibly tactile feel of nocking an imaginary arrow to a bowstring that doesn't exist.

LOW Volleyball. Incredibly abstracted and not particularly immersive.

WTF In Gladiator Duel, sending opponents soaring weightlessly out of the ring and seeing them smash through background scenery.

Of Microsoft, gamers, pots, kettles and Call of Duty: Black Ops

Call of Duty: Black Ops Screenshot

When Xbox Live's director of policy and enforcement, Stephen Toulouse, stridently vowed to ban any Call of Duty: Black Ops player who sports a swastika emblem online, I can't say I felt any particular way about it. As an fence sitter on the subject of censorship, I much prefer to let others do the hard work of untangling that Gordian Knot.

Vanquish Second Opinion

From Blueprint to Bible and Back Again

Vanquish Screenshot

HIGH Every time I backflipped off of a gorgie, slowed time in midair and blew the heads off of three others before touching the ground. This happened often.

LOW Restarting a stage and getting blown away by a starship-class laser before the chapter title had even faded from the screen.

WTF A tie between the dancing gorgies, and the fact that not one of them was doing the robot.

Left-Handed? What’s That?

The Fight: Lights Out Screenshot

You may have not heard it by now, but I kinda love the PlayStation Move. Sure it's derivative, but that's easy to forgive considering how effectively it fulfills the promise of motion controllers that was only hinted at with the Wii. I enjoyed it so much, in fact, that I went ahead and bought a second Move want in anticipation for The Fight: Lights Out.

Ys Seven Second Opinion

Change is Good, but Soul is Better

Ys Seven Screenshot

HIGH The pulse-pounding boss fights are some of the best in the series.

LOW The story is easily one of the worst.

WTF Sanitized or not, I never thought I'd see a torture scene in an Ys game.

Fabula Nova Feminas: Final Fantasy XIII is a Womens’ World

Final Fantasy XIII Screenshot

At first, I held off writing this article because everyone was too busy talking about how Final Fantasy XIII is a terrible game, then it was because the game was "too old" to talk about. Fortunately, the recent release of Metroid: Other M has reignited conversation about the portrayal of women in games, and given me the perfect opportunity to get this article out of my mind and off of my back. This article does contain major spoilers.