By Joe Strange
It’s been 9 years since the Xbox 360 first marked the beginning of the last console generation, but with the big three’s consoles now all out and taking off, after a somewhat rocky start, I think it’s safe to say that the 360, PS3 and Wii are now officially, OFFICIALLY, last generation.
So to mark that fact, I’ve compiled my personal favourite games from that generation, not just games, sequels. Because in gaming, sequels have so much potential, and these all made a huge mark on me.
5: Borderlands 2; Xbox 360, PS Vita, PS3, PC (2012)
Actually the most recent sequel on this list, with its improved storyline and varied missions Borderlands 2 fixed every issue I had with the original.
Handsome Jack is an incredible villain, being both vile and likable, charismatic and hilarious but still, still making you hate him at every turn, which is more than can be said for, well, whoever was the lead antagonist in the first Pandora outing.
The humour is back too, with a huge number of pop culture references, from Minecraft to the Wilhelm scream, and just pure madness, Borderlands 2 was some of the best fun I’ve had in a long time, and the DLC delivers the same again; madness, humour and more guns.
4:The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess; Wii (2008)
While not strictly a sequel, as Zelda games rarely are, this launch title for the Wii was the reason many gamers, myself included, threw their money at Nintendo. With a reminiscent storyline and the sorts of puzzles we’ve come to expect of the series and the usual cast of unique characters, Twilight Princess was an absolute delight to play. With a more mature look and feel that showed us what the Wii was capable of, Link’s twilight escapades implemented the motion controls in a simple but effective way that wasn’t as fiddly as the later Skyward Sword’s controls.
While critics chastised it for being a shameless rehash of the legendary Orcarina of Time, with excellent motion controls and a new look I’d like to call it more of a successful homage.
3:Mass Effect 2; Xbox, PS3, PC (2010)
Bioware’s epic space RPG was a hit when it landed in 2007 but it was not without its faults. Questionable dialogue, stiff controls and repetitive missions held players back from wanting to experience the multiple endings. This was never truer than once players got a taste of the sequel. An improved ammo and combat system, a greater variety of missions and slicker controls fixed everything that was wrong with numero uno.
With the inclusion of quick time moral actions and a multitude of brilliant characters both old and new, players were really forced to think about their actions, and live with the consequences. This all wrapped up in a superbly realised world with shocking revelations and a mythology to make Tolkien jealous made this the jewel in Bioware’s RPG crown.
2: Portal 2; PC, Xbox 360, Ps3 (2011)
The sequel to the Orange Box’s break out hit did not disappoint. More fast paced brain melting physics and momentum puzzles complete with a hilarious script and superb casting made Portal 2 a dream come true.
It also introduced something we all wanted since we first picked up the portal gun, the chance to throw our friends into an Aperture Science Emergency Intelligence Incinerator in a multiplayer that added to the single player story and had all the hallmarks of Valve charm.
With the return of GLADOS, voices of Stephen Merchant (The Ricky Gervais show) as the idiotic but loveable Wheatley and J.K Simmons (Spiderman) as Aperture’s founder Cave Johnson, Portal 2 was a rollercoaster of humour, emotions and potato batteries.
1: Assassin’s Creed 2; Xbox 360, PS3, PC (2009)
I’ll admit, this is where my subjectivity comes in. This has to be one of my favourite games of all time. The first Assassin’s Creed was far from perfect. Repetitive, ugly and long winded to be kind. However, the sequel based in renaissance Italy was absolutely superb. As the first in the incredibly succesful Ezio trilogy, it marked the beginning of what is now one of the behemoths of triple A titles. The controls seemed more fluid, the inclusion of new weapons and abilities as well as a more fulfilling storyline made this game everything that its precursor was not. And finally our master assassin, able to decimate an entire army, can finally swim.
So what do you think? Did I miss your favourite sequel? Or do you just outright dislike one of these? Leave a message below.