Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 Review

 2013 Review

This is well, WELL, overdue. I normally finish this by the end of the year, but partially due to internet issues this has been delayed. I have also slightly shortened his to just cover my top films and games of the year will little else in the way of details... anyway...

Another year and another yearly review. So without further introductions:


Top 3 films of 2013


This is my top film of the year and I’m hoping that it is also recognized come the Oscars in 2014, as it certainly deserves all the awards that can be thrown at it.

In the past I have been very wary of 3D films, but some film have recently (whilst not completely) slightly converted me, and Gravity is one of the very best uses of 3D in cinema. It is a very simple and short film, but watching it in the cinema (even our pitiful local cinema) was breathtaking.

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

This seems to be a bit of a surprising entry into my top 3 films of the year, especially in view of the fact that I had a lukewarm response to the first film. This second film was, in my opinion, head and shoulders above the original.

It was an extremely dark film for a 12a rated film, prompting me to ask my son (age 10) on several occasions if he was ok during the first half of the film. It also tackled my very current issues surprisingly well, whilst still remaining a very entertaining film.

Django Unchained

It took me an age to watch this, after numerous failed attempts to watch it. In the end it was worth the wait, and is not only a great Tarantino film, but also a great Western as well. I just hope that Tarantino directs yet another western next (as he has recently indicated), as Hollywood needs more westerns of this calibre.


Top 3 games on 2012

Persona 4: Golden

This was my first introduction to the Persona series and since playing this I have also now played Persona 3 portable (PSP) and also have Persona 2 to play at some point. Persona 5 (when eventually released) is also now one of my most anticipated games, despite knowing next to anything at all about it. That probably gives and indication of how much I am now taken by the series.

The fact that the series is based in a Japanese High School during a standard school year and not the typical Fantasy/Sci-Fi setting sets this apart from most RPG's. I also think that the mixture between the persona collection (which has similarities to Pokemon) and typical JRPG gameplay is genius and compelling.

A fantastic game the gripped me from beginning to end.

Fire Emblem: Awakening

I love the Advance Wars games (also from Intelligence Systems), but had never played any of the Fire Emblem games prior to this. I am now a convert. This is now my most played game on the 3DS (ignoring Animal Crossing – but that has been played more by Roz than me), with over 80 hours put into this.

A fantastic strategy game with a surprising marriage mechanic, which ensure that you do not want to let any characters die under any circumstances, and also due to the fact that time travel is involved, means that you get to see how the offspring of your characters turns out, who can also be called into the scenario.

The Last of Us

The Uncharted games from Naughty Dog have always been great, but it is good to see an original property from this game developer.

It could be easy to quickly consider this as an average post apocalyptic adventure that you see so often in games, but it is the relationships in the game and the bleak and desperate management of resources, together with the scrabble to survive which elevates this.

The best game on the PS3 during the year and very possible the best game overall during the year.

I really need to find some time to play through this another time before the first story DLC is released (which is a must buy)

Notable mentions:

Super Mario 3D World
A joy to play, and very almost made it into my top 3.

Assassins Creed 4: Black Flag
I didn’t like AC3, but this is a completely different kettle of fish (and whales and sharks). The best game so far on my PS4.

Remember Me
A game from my PS+ subscription which really surprised me.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

A great throwback to A Link to the Past

Note: Posted as 31/12/13 - but finalised much later than this

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