January 25, 2010

The BAMF Awards!

A brief note - the BAMF Awards apply only to game that I have had ample hands on experience with. This year the only notable exception is Uncharted 2. Before the PS3 Fanboys flame up the site, you wouldn't want me to include Uncharted 2 anyway, because friends tell me it's the same-old same-old as the first game but with better visuals.

Here are the winners:

Best Shooter - Borderlands
Some might consider this an upset considering Modern Warfare 2 and Halo 3 ODST both came out this year; however, neither game presented anything new or groundbreaking. Borderlands, on the other hand, took massive leaps forward in the shooting world. It created a fast-pace frenzy of firing filled with gun lust and gore galore. It has redefined the RPG and Shooter. Modern Warfare 2 comes in second place, largely because Modern Warfare 2 is short. Unlike Halo 3 ODST, Modern Warfare 2's short length isn't a problem because the game is non-stop action and well-made the entire way.

Best Graphics - Batman: Arkham Asylum
On the PS3, the Graphics for this game blew my mind. It was Batman come to life, and unlike Uncharted 2 where graphics are the game, in Batman the creators made graphics a fantastic complement to the game. I also love attention to small details, and in Batman everything is done right. Every chair has the wood marks/lines, every floor has each square perfectly detailed, and even Batman's suit retains any battle scars you get throughout the game. All I can say is...WOW!

Best RPG (games like Borderlands don't count) - Dragon Age: Origins
I didn't play this game too much since I only rented it, but it reminded me of KOTOR 1 and 2. No surprise given the maker. Head to head against Borderlands, Borderlands wins out, but I feel that Dragon Age: Origins is a true return to the lore-filled RPG. As an aside, if you want a fun RPG, check out Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2 (it's along the lines of a Baldur's Gate type game).

Best Music - Guitar Hero: Greatest Hits
Is it cheap giving best music to a music game? Why yes, yes it is. If I was a massive Beetles fan the Rockband game would have won.

Most Addicting - Ratchet Clank Future: A Crack in Time
It's predecessor (Ratchet Clank Future 1) returned my attention to the series, and while this game is more of the same as the first future, it still rocks. The crazy weapon names, humor, and massive destruction keep you entertained for hours. Honorable mentions in this category go to the juggernauts (Assassin's Creed 2, Batman: Arkham Asylum, and Borderlands).

Best Co-Op - Borderlands
This is the Co-Op from my dreams! You play the actual game, but with other people! It is like World of Warcraft collides with Halo 1 and Call of Duty into a massively fun adventure.

Best Online/Multiplayer - Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
While Modern Warfare 1's online play was waaayyyy better, Modern Warfare 2 lucks out in that it is the only real online game to have come out. Game-wise, this game has received a lot of hatred that I don't find justified. The single-player is very intense and you will love it. The Challenges are also fun. The integration of cutscenes with gameplay is also an innovation, but one that was out-shadowed by Assassin's Creed 2 similar interwinding.

Best Action - Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
For me, an action game is about non-stop killing. Borderlands won Best Shooter so I won't give it best Action, and I consider Batman more of a detective/stealth with combat mixed in. Assassin's Creed 2 is a game where the combat is a bit repetitive and focuses more on cool acrobatics. That left me with few choices I considered as a true action game. Then it hit me: Modern Warfare 2. The game isn't all shooting; it is a suspense ride with plot twists and cool cinematic scenes built into the story. It even has a few surprises in game.

Best Adventure (TIE) - Assassin's Creed 2, Batman: Arkham Asylum
Are these games adventure games? Well, they each take you on a journey. They each involve puzzle challenges and learning more about yourself on the journey. Each has an arch-foe, and each has an internal struggle. If it sounds like an Odyssey it's an adventure game in my book, and both of these take the cake.

Best Fighting (TIE)- Street Fighter IV, Punch-Out!!!
While Street Fighter IV is a fun game, it is very challenging and the controls are hard to learn for an American Boy. So, I give it a tie with a game that is often over-looked and doesn't get the loving it needs: Punch-Out for the Wii. Punch-Out is plain fun. Using the Wii-Fit Board, I get to dodge, dip, punch, jab, jump, everything. It captured what drew me to Fight Night Round 3 as well as the soul and animation of Mike Tyson's original. You'll have a hell of a good time with Punch-Out.

Best Sports Game - Madden NFL 10
As a sports guru I take this category very seriously. While the new FIFA game gave Madden a run for it's money, Madden 10 wins the award because it saved the series. Since 2005, Madden games have been getting worse and worse. Madden '09 was an atrocity. Nay, it was an abomination. 10 saves the series and takes it back to the best in the series, Madden 2005. While not as good as Madden 2005, 10 is a sign that the series is back on the right path.

Most Challenging - Demon's Souls
I did not play it, but tales of its difficulty are legendary. It ranks up there with the first Xbox Ninja Gaiden.

Best Strategy - Halo Wars
Another one I didn't play, but given the Age of Empires history and high reviews, I can sit back and agree.

Best Cutscenes - Halo Wars [and Uncharted 2]
Again, I said Uncharted 2 wouldn't be mentioned, but I have heard that when it comes to cutscenes this game blows everyone out of the water. I'd also like to mention Assassin's Creed 2, because cutscenes fit flawlessly into the game and created a narrative that seemed to continue without pause. All in all, after youtubing the cutscenes, the Halo Wars cutscenes were epic. To win this BAMF, epicness is a req.

Most Underrated - The Conduit
Asking youself what is this game? A Wii Shooter that rivals Halo 1. Yes, it rivals Halo 1. For more info, check the archives over at Installation 04.

Best Wii Game - Madworld
Alright, so everyone loved Mario Brothers Wii. I found it boring alone. It's the same exact thing as the DS one, only now with Yoshi's. Oh, and the Koopa Kids return. Big Whoop. I still don't get their relation to Bowser. Anyway, the game is boring. Madworld, on the other hand, is just plain crazy. I only rented this game and was blown away by the sheer insanity of this game. It's like the Gears of War Chainsaw meets, well, whatever goes on in Rorshach's head.

Best Sequel - Assassin's Creed 2
Some sequels were solid and did more of the same, like Modern Warfare 2 or Ratchet Clank Future 2. Assassin's Creed 2, on the other hand, did what X-Men 2 did and it raised the bar. Not only did it fix all the flaws of the first game, but it also took the game to new depths and combined Ubisoft's best work (Prince of Persia, Splinter Cell) into a game for the ages. The storyline is also one that keeps you on edge.

Best Game Based on a Movie (TIE) - Ghostbusters, X-Men Origins: Wolverine
Oh noes! Games based on movies! Well, both games are among the 20 best games this year in my book. Both are fun and highly entertaining. Both are solid 8s and are cheap now given the infamous nature of movie games. Wolverine is a BAMF after all, so he was also due for a BAMF Award.

The Byestander (aka Most Overrated) - Halo 3 ODST
You can read my review on this, but it's time that Bungie stops getting a pass. Halo 1 was years ago, and since Halo 1 each Halo game gets worse and worse. 3 was slightly better, but still fit along with the downward trend. Halo 3: ODST was very short, not at all challenging for a Halo Vet, the graphics sucked, and the game wasn't even fun until the end. It was rather boring watching your team-mates do everything. The only good point was that the game had massive potential and a very creative story. Never again will I let Microsoft rob me blind.

The Pussy Dishonor Award for Worst Game - Watchmen: The End is Nigh
What a shitty game. Not only is it an outdated street fighter type game from the SNES days, but it is also bad at it. The combat is lame. The enemies are lame. And the graphics are too dark to see anything. Epic Fail!

The Pussy Dishonor Award for Worst Sequel - Resident Evil 5
Huh? I can't run AND shoot like in every game in existence since the PS2 hit? WTF! FAIL!

The Pussy Dishonor for Outdated Cutscene Graphics - Halo 3: ODST
Besides the very strange facial expressions, the cutscenes looked 4 years in the past. In fact, it looks worse than Halo 3's cutscene graphics. Even Watchmen had way better graphics. C'mon Bungie, get with the program here.

3rd Place Game of the Year BAMF - Borderlands
Let me be clear: in terms of fun and replay value Borderlands is, without a doubt, game of the year. The game could have won well over 75% of the BAMFs on this page. This is a game I will still be playing years to come. My only problem is that for Game of the Year, I look towards fun, but more importantly a game that you will remember years to come (even if you don't play it again). For example, I still remember Bioshock and hold it dearly. When the dust settles, I will remember this game as fun, but there is nothing story-wise to latch on to.

The Dirty Harold's Assistant (2nd Place) - Batman: Arkham Asylum
Honestly, this and Assassin's Creed 2 are equal. Both games are nearly perfect. The only flaws are the boss battles against Killer Croc, and especially irritating, the last boss battle against Joker. What lame boss fights. Anyway, the Scarecrow fights in this game will give me chills for years, and the storyline was the best story-line of any game since Bioshock.

The Dirty Harold (Game of the Year) - Assassin's Creed 2
So why did Assassin's Creed 2 win over Batman? I'm a history guy, and I loved the historical fictions and truths weaved into the game. The Truth segment was also the most incredible moment of any game this year. Like I said, this and Batman are on even footing.


  1. Youtube does not do Halo Wars justice.

    Also, I should probably get around to playing Assassin's Creed 2 sometime.

  2. just wanted to say that conduit, in my very humble opinion, is not, nor could ever be as good as Halo Combatt Evolved. But hey, thats just me.