Updated: Sunday, 29th March 2020 @ 7:27am

MM's top 20 best computer games of 2012 – 20 to 16

MM's top 20 best computer games of 2012 – 20 to 16

By Chris Higgins

With Mircosoft and Sony once again going head to head for the biggest slice of the Christmas shopping cake, MM reveal the year’s 20 best games that you can bestow on someone as a gift – or even get your teeth into yourself.

20. Diablo III

After waiting 12 years for the next instalment in the action role-playing franchise, Diablo fans held high hopes for the return of the hack and slash loot-‘em-up series – possibly too high.

With the hype surrounding the release of one of the most anticipated games of all time approaching critical mass, the risk of failing to live up to unattainable expectations was always present.

But after a launch week marred by technical failings and oversights in game design (the decision to limit players to online-only play is still baffling) Blizzard fluffed the chance to reinvigorate the franchise. Despite the hiccups D3 proved to be an enjoyable, if limited, dungeon crawler – just not to the level everyone would have hoped.

19. Mass Effect 3

The conclusion to EA and Bioware’s moral space opera caused a bit of controversy when it hit the shelves in March for not being as satisfactorily conclusive as fans were initially led to believe.

Despite the ending being ‘a bit rubbish’ in most hardcore devotees’ minds, there’s little in the way of denying that the game itself stood as a solid entry into the trilogy.

Taking into account choices made in the previous instalments, the theme of shaping your destiny while saving mankind’s continues in a well-paced mix of conversation and RPG action, with some stunning visuals.

A tendency to over-rely on set pieces nets the title a few negative marks, but overall a fitting end to Commander Shepard and crew.

 

18. CoD: Black Ops 2

Seen as one of the year’s big hitters, BLOPS 2 delivered on all fronts when it dropped into the eager hands of hardcore fans last month.

Building on the success of the long-running shooter series, the latest chapter takes place in the not so distant future where people still kill each other with guns, and sometimes crossbows.

While retaining the title of ‘best-selling thing ever out of anything’ and providing the usual stellar multiplayer FPS experience, BLOPS 2 offers nothing new. In that respect, it deserves its mention here, but can’t rank any higher.

 

17. LEGO Lord of the Rings

Coming into the table a spot above the most successful game of all time, LEGO LotR manages to triumph over the goliath by showing one thing BLOPS lacks: creativity.

Retelling the entire epic saga of the LotR films using only bricks and minifig members of the fellowship is no mean feat.

But the LEGO version manages to compact the entire story into just 18 co-operative missions (with an intuitive dynamic split-screen) and a series of cut-scenes parodying the more iconic moments of the films.

The use of actual audio from the trilogy adds to the expressive features of the LEGO minifigs playing Sean Bean and co adding a touch of surreality to the slapstick shenanigans on-screen. Gameplay is the familiar mix of bashing, collecting, or solving everything in sight and is great fun for both hardcore and casual gamers. A real family treat.

 

16. Far Cry 3

Keeping up appearances for the CryTek engine, FC3 looks every bit as beautiful as its descendants.

The latest tropical gun-toting exploits see a group of rich, over-privileged ‘bros’ getting kidnapped during a ‘totally balling’ vacation.

You, as the assumedly lesser male in the pack, are the unlikely saviour of your pals by quickly learning how to skin animals and make weapons holsters out of them.

The scope of exploring in the game is as refreshing as the verdant jungle you scramble through, but the experience is marred by how little motivation you are given to actually want to save the tossers you’re on holiday with.

Pictures courtesy of Wiki Commons, with thanks

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