Monday, December 17, 2007

The Year in Review: Best of the Blog

All this week, we'll be recapping the year that was. First up: the best of Insult Swordfighting, 2007.

January: I discovered that Castlevania might just be the best video game series of all time, which permanently shook the foundations upon which my perceptions of reality are based.

March: In response to a Destructoid post called "Why Video Game Reviews Suck," I blamed scoring systems as the reason game reviews suck. Which may not necessarily be true -- it may simply be that people put too much weight on the score and not enough on the content of the review.

April: After spending a little time with the Xbox 360 version of Guitar Hero II, I proceeded to bitch about it. I later determined I had been wrong about everything, and it's just about the greatest thing in the world. (I didn't even realize there were USB ports on the front of the console, but, in my defense, the instruction manual didn't say anything about it.) You even get used to the jagged contour of the X-plorer pretty quickly.

May: While revisiting the awesome 2001 Duke Nukem Forever trailer, I also came across a mind-blowing 2007 trailer that was, for whatever reason, not given adequate press coverage.

June: Manhunt 2 is delayed after big box stores like Target and Wal Mart refuse to sell it. I decry this creeping fascism. Later, after I play the game, I find myself wishing the game were not just banned, but that all existing copies were paved over in the desert next to all those Atari 2600 E.T. cartridges.

August: Accusations of racism in Resident Evil 5 unleash a torrent of actual racism, not to mention sexism, on gaming blogs and message boards across the interweb. I cannot resist throwing a few haymakers. Also in August: a review of the terrific documentary King of Kong, and much about BioShock.

September: Completing Guitar Hero II on hard mode leads to a rumination on the balance between hardcore gameplay and shorter, more "casual" play sessions.

October: Continuing in that vein, thoughts on the episodic model hitting the sweet spot for those who want the hardcore experience but don't have hardcore free time. Also in October: They're playing Halo in church, and the birth of user-submitted previews.

November: Having now found our theme, and spurred on by a N'Gai Croal post, we also start to question how the definition of value might differ from one person to the next, particularly for the "hardcasual" gamer. Also in November: is terrible, Mass Effect stinks, Rock Band is awesome, and Gerstmann gets the boot.

December: Recapping December probably isn't necessary, huh.

Later this week: the best and worst games of 2007, honorable mentions, and year-end superlatives.

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