TA Top Five: Games of 2010

By Marc Hollinshead, 5 years ago
We have now reached the end of the first decade of the new millennium. The big One-Oh. We've seen a deluge of gaming awesomeness in each of the previous lists, and 2010 has waited patiently for its time in the spotlight. It's certainly no small year in the gaming department, as both sequels and new IP's join forces to make a gargantuan amount of new titles. With the likes of Dead Rising 2 (Xbox 360) and Fable III filling up the shelves, more and more memorable games follow suit. While those two particular games haven't made the list, I wanted to take time to remember them. Ok... done. Right, onto the good stuff!

Honorable Mentions (in no particular order)

Bayonetta - Platinum Games - January
Community Rating - 4.1 | Metacritic Score - 90


The long-legged Umbra Witch is probably one of the most attractive females in gaming. Don't deny it. Bayonetta brought us gameplay that goes back to the days of Devil May Cry and it worked fantastically. With hair raising combos (literally) and insane bosses, Platinum Games gave us a title that provided hours of fun. The story may have been slightly odd in places, but it was a unique take on gods, angels, and other-wordly demons. Bayonetta herself became an extremely memorable character so do yourselves a favour and meet her if you haven't already. Fun Fact: This was my first game that I got 100% in!

Darksiders - Vigil Games - January
Community Rating - 4.1 | Metacritic Score - 83


Released at the same time as Bayonetta, another brand new IP was placed into our hands. Darksiders had you following one of the four horsemen of the apocolypse in a game that was full of interesting puzzles, action, and an intriguing story. War was not someone with whom to be trifled, and he possessed abilities that amped up the fun greatly. The game took many great elements from a number of well-known franchises and combined them into something that worked well for a new IP.

Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood - Ubisoft Montreal - November
Community Rating - 4.4 | Metacritic Score - 89

Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood

In Brotherhood, we continue the journey of legendary assassin Ezio Auditore. It didn't possess as much of the magic as what came before in Assassin's Creed II, but it introduced elements that made it a fun title of 2010, namely the multiplayer mode. The (in)famous multiplayer of the Assassin's Creed franchise has been refined a lot in each recurring instalment, but it still struggles to win everyone over. The 100% sync on the other hand...that's a whole different story.

BioShock 2 (Xbox 360) - 2K Marin - February
Community Rating - 4.2 | Metacritic Score - 88

BioShock 2

Rapture is one of the most elaborate and detailed game settings to date. The first BioShock (Xbox 360) presented the underwater metropolis amazingly well so, of course, the next instalment had a lot to live up to. BioShock 2 was an enjoyable title, putting you in the shoes of a Big Daddy, which made it feel like a unique game. The multiplayer may not have impressed everyone, but overall the game provided a great story, fantastic gameplay, and beautiful graphics. Don't worry about this being a bad experience; it's set in Rapture after all!

Fallout: New Vegas - Obsidian Entertainment - October
Community Rating - 4.3 | Metacritic Score - 84

Fallout: New Vegas

After the huge success of Fallout 3, New Vegas had some big shoes to fill. Using the same (yet slightly dated) engine of what came before it, we still get a brilliant RPG that acts as a tribute to games of the past. A great setting, an extra hardcore mode for only the best of the best, and a lot of content ticked all the right boxes, and so Obsidian did the series justice by creating a game that kept Fallout lovers going for a long time.

The Fine Five

Call of Duty: Black Ops - Treyarch - November
Community Rating - 4.0 | Metacritic Score - 87

Call of Duty makes the list AGAIN? What is this madness!? In all seriousness, Black Ops was (and still is) one of the biggest titles in the first-person-shooter franchise to date. It was one of those games that every young boy and his mother knew about, and it gained an immense amount of popularity. The continuation of the acclaimed zombies mode, as well as an emphasis on creating a fun singleplayer campaign (as we see from the achievements) means that Treyarch made one of the better titles in the series, at least in popularity terms. A darker spin on the Call of Duty name and a more balanced experience made for a fun game for the fans. 134k+ tracked gamers speaks for itself.

Alan Wake - Remedy Entertainment - May
Community Rating - 4.3 | Metacritic Score - 83

Darkness can be terrifying. Mr. Wake knows that all too well. The world of Alan Wake used both light and darkness to craft a very interesting story with a number of unexpected twists and turns. What was seemingly a relaxing getaway for Alan and his wife, Alice, ended up becoming a horrific journey through Bright Falls against the forces of the evil darkness. While it may not have been absolutely terrifying, Alan Wake was a very atmospheric game that was best played in the darkness of your own home. Poor Alan was unable to run for more than a mere five seconds without his breath escaping him, but that added to the survival-horror aspect of the game. For people who love a good singleplayer experience with an engaging story, Alan Wake is the way to go. 2010 has done it again!

Mass Effect 2 - Bioware - January
Community Rating - 4.7 | Metacritic Score - 96

Back in 2007, the first Mass Effect made a remarkable impact in the gaming world. When Mass Effect 2 was released, it switched up a number of aspects of the original title. Combat especially comes to mind, along with the simplifying of the leveling system. ME2 brought refined combat, a huge cast of unique characters, and one of the best final missions ever to come to a video game. You thought Shepard had it bad in ME1? Try going on a suicide mission. Mass Effect 2 will give you that experience. It has been said to be the best of the trilogy, and there's a good reason for it. 2010 started very strongly with this one.

Halo: Reach - Bungie - September
Community Rating - 4.3 | Metacritic Score - 91

The Halo franchise was already HUGELY popular series thanks to the success of Halo 3, but Halo: Reach managed to blow even the most tracked game on TA out of the water. With updated graphics, action-packed gameplay, and an immensely enjoyable multiplayer, this was not a title to be missed. With games that are renowned for multiplayer, it can be tough to create a single player campaign that's worth a look, but Bungie managed to give us an experience that was just the right length and didn't leave us wanting more. Halo has always possessed multiplayer that provides hours upon hours of fun and Reach continued that trend with the return of known modes, as well as some brand new modes to keep players entertained. If you loved a good shooter, or fancied a change from the latest Call of Duty, this was the game for you.

Red Dead Redemption - Rockstar San Diego - May
Community Rating - 4.6 | Metacritic Score - 95

I think it's safe to say that Rockstar has given us some pretty amazing games over the years. In 2010, they delivered a game that was gob-smacking. The Wild West is not a setting that is used largely in games, but Red Dead Redemption showed us just how intricate this era was. John Marston was a memorable protagonist indeed, and again he was not someone to be trifled with. The story was of a decent length and would keep you going for a decent amount of time. Although the gameplay was similar to the likes of Grand Theft Auto, by no means was it a simple rehash of those titles. Red Dead Redemption raised the bar on how open-world games should be. A beautiful and fully realised world with lots of "wow" moments meant that there was a lot to do. Multiplayer also pried its head into this one, but it was widely seen as a great experience. You could either enjoy roaming around at your leisure or take part in a number of team based games. When put together, we get a game that will always be remembered as an awesome open-world masterpiece.

The TA Team will be bringing you The TA Top Five for each year of the 360 era until we hit this year. Did we miss a game you loved? If so, be sure to let us know in the comments!
Marc Hollinshead
Written by Marc Hollinshead
To summarize Marc in two words, it would be "Christian Gamer." You will usually find him getting stuck into story heavy action-adventure games, RPG's and the odd quirky title when he isn't raving about Dark Souls and Mass Effect. Outside the world of gaming, Marc attends and helps out in his church on a regular basis and has a not-so thrilling job in a supermarket.