The past year has certainly been a busy time for game launches, and we've even seen the introduction of the Kinect for Xbox and PlayStation Move carrying on the good, motion-controlled work started by the Nintendo Wii. There's been a river of games washing through Pocket-lint Towers in 2010, so picking the best ones was a very difficult task indeed. We managed it though. Just about.
So, with the Pocket-lint Gadget Awards 2010 set to take place in a matter of weeks, we take a look at the five products battling it out for the chance to be Best Game 2010. Which will get your vote?
- iPhone/iPod/Palm/Nokia/Android app
- December 2009
The selection of downloadable games available on mobile devices is gargantuan, as anyone that's ever lost several hours browsing through the gaming apps on iTunes will tell you. However, there's only one game that's so popular that the blogosphere almost suffered a meltdown when a range of cuddly toys was announced, and that's Angry Birds. It's the number one paid-for app in pretty much every country around the globe and it's flipping addictive.
The idea is that you're a bird, an angry bird. And you're angry because some pesky green pigs have half-inched your eggs and made away with them. You and your feathered posse are hell-bent on getting them back through the medium of a series of linear platform-style levels. Each level sees the naughty pigs holed up in some sort of construction which you have to destroy, while popping the pigs, by launching your birds into the breach. It's a very simple idea, but one that's infuriatingly hard to stop playing, making it a front runner for the Best Game award.
Battlefield Bad Company 2
- Xbox/PS3/PC game
- March 2010
The last year has seen the launch of plenty of big-profile first-person shooter games, including Call of Duty: Black Ops, Halo Reach and Medal of Honor. However, it was Electronic Arts' Battlefield Bad Company 2 that really caught our eye and caused us to lose out on many hours in the real world.
This dark and well thought out take on the military action game sees Private Preston Marlowe back in the thick of the action as the protagonist. There are lots of elements that make this a great game, not least the destructible environments, multiplayer maps and compelling plot. The game has managed to vanquish its first-person shooter rivals to make it onto our shortlist, but has it got enough ammo left to capture this year's award for Best Game?
- Xbox game
- October 2010
Fable 3 was one of the most highly anticipated gaming launches of 2010, and if you're familiar with the first two games in the saga, then it's easy to see why. This gaming series manages to perfectly combine role-playing with action, and although currently only available on the Xbox, will soon be released as a PC version too.
Once again, the plot is set in the land of Albion and takes place around 50 years after the events of the previous game. The big draw for the latest instalment in the Fable story is the scrapping of the conventional list-based menu and the introduction of The Santuary, where you'll receive guidance from your own personal butler. The icing on the cake is the first-class ensemble voice cast that includes the talents of Stephen Fry, John Cleese, Sir Ben Kingsley, Simon Pegg and Johnathan Ross as well as plenty of other top-notch Brits. This is definitely one to watch out for in the Best Game category.
Red Dead Redemption
- Xbox/PS3 game
- May 2010
This Western-themed action-adventure game moseyed on into town back in May, and a very impressive figure it was, too. Published by Rockstar Games, Red Dead Redemption is set in the American Wild West of the early 1900s and sees former outlaw John Marston forced to turn bounty hunter and track down his old posse. He's spurred on by some gentle encouragement from the government, who has kidnapped his wife and child.
As you'd expect, the action involves a lot of horse-riding and shooting, although not much swimming as so-called tough guy Marston can't even doggy paddle and will drown if he gets out of his depth. Despite this Achilles' Heel, he's a convincing reluctant hero in every other way and makes the game a thoroughly enjoyable affair. This is, quite simply, a must-have for any serious gamer and a strong contender to win the Best Game spurs.
Super Mario Galaxy 2
- Wii game
- June 2010
It would be a shame to have a games shortlist that didn't somehow involve everyone's favourite portly Italian plumber. Unsurprisingly, Super Mario Galaxy 2 is the sequel to Super Mario Galaxy and is the fourth 3D platformer in the series as well as being one of the top-selling games on the Nintendo Wii. This time round, Mario is on a quest to outer space to rescue Princess Peach, who has been kidnapped by the evil King Bowser. He also has to recover the Power Stars that have been nicked by the baddie in order to take control of the universe.
It might not be an earth-shattering game, but it delivers exactly what it promises and is certainly the best 3D game in the Mario canon of work so far. Appealing to both hardcore gamers and families, this charming and engaging game certainly deserves its place on our shortlist, but has it got the goods to win the category?
Which of these fantastic five gets your vote as the Pocket-lint Awards Best Game 2010? Make your choice count on our voting page and don't forget to take a look at the other categories as we round them up.