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PS3T's Top 25 PlayStation 3 Games - Part Three: The Golden Age Begins

This is a discussion on PS3T's Top 25 PlayStation 3 Games - Part Three: The Golden Age Begins within the Game Reviews forum, part of the Trophy Guides, Reviews & Articles; Part 3 - The Golden Age Begins Sorry for the big delay, folks. I took a little time-out from writing ...

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    PS3T's Top 25 PlayStation 3 Games - Part Three: The Golden Age Begins



    Part 3 - The Golden Age Begins

    Sorry for the big delay, folks. I took a little time-out from writing to go on a trophy binge as a competitor in our PS4 Launch trophy competition this month. Alas I have returned not with victory and spoils, but with licked wounds and swallowed pride. Luckily, my misery is your gain – nothing motivates writing better than despair (and the alcohol used to soothe it).

    To make up for the delay, and in the spirit of the Christmas season, this week we bring you not one, but two instalments of PS3T’s Top 25 PlayStation 3 Games, our multi-part list of must-play games available on the PlayStation 3. This one’s a big one folks, with some real good games and some real good stories, so sit back, relax, and enjoy. Merry Christmas!

    Last time on PS3T’s Top 25 PlayStation 3 Games…

    The PlayStation 3 had finally started to find its feet. Sony’s first and second-party developers were pumping out bigger and better exclusives for the platform; while on the multi-platform front, the quality gap between the PS3 and the Xbox 360 had closed significantly, with the two titans effectively reaching parity in terms of graphical fidelity and general performance.

    At this point in our timeline, we’ve reached 2010 - the beginning of what many would call the ‘Golden Age’ of the generation; a period that saw some absolutely phenomenal games, across all platforms. But 2010 is important for another reason: it was the year the casual games market reached its zenith.

    While Sony and Microsoft duked it out, Nintendo’s Wii successfully jump-started the casual games market, and then proceeded to milk the living s**t out of it. Its mixture of fun and intuitive motion controls and light-hearted, uncomplicated games made it all but irresistible to young and old alike.

    In the latter half of 2010, in an effort to tap into that sweet sweet casual money, Sony released the PlayStation Move: a motion control system for the PlayStation 3 which, unlike the Wii and its infrared tech that could be played in the dark-ages, actually packed some solid hardware, using internal inertial sensors in conjunction with a camera (the PlayStation Eye) to track players’ movements. It also strongly resembled a glow-in-the-dark vibrator.


    The PlayStation Move: at home in your living room, or at the bottom of your girlfriend’s sock draw.

    In the months before its release, Sony made a huge push for the Move, dedicating a significant portion of their GDC (Game Developers Conference) presentation to demonstrating the final product, and unveiling the companion navigation controller, while at E3 they dedicated 40 minutes to demoing Wonderbook (an augmented-reality game that used the Move in conjunction with a book-like peripheral to tell interactive stories). The response from both the industry and gamers was an overwhelming “um…why?”

    Unfortunately for Sony, it didn’t get much better from there. Most of the games designed for the Move were garbage, and the few that were decent (Sorcery and Sports Champions come to mind) received little-to-no coverage (Sony has a long history of failing to effectively market their games), and swiftly faded into obscurity.

    The Move is widely considered a failure, but its importance should not be overlooked. The underwhelming sales figures and less-than favourable reviews of much of the associated software helped Sony realise what PlayStation is really all about: great games and memorable experiences, with ‘gamers’ as the focus – sentiments that would serve them well in the coming years…


    2010 wasn’t all bad for Sony, mind you. At E3, President and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment America, Jack Tretton, unveiled PlayStation Plus: an ancillary subscription service for the PlayStation 3 and PSP that, for less than the price of a new game ever year, offered console owners automatic updates and downloads for a wide range of content; exclusive access to demos, full game trials, and betas; a free subscription to the now-defunct digital PlayStation magazine, Qore; and access to something called the Instant Game Collection, or IGC – easily the best feature of the service, and one of the best things to come out of this console generation.


    In its first year, PlayStation Plus offered well over $1000 worth of content, and it's only improved since

    The Instant Game Collection is exactly that – a collection of games, available at any time to holders of a PlayStation Plus subscription. Every month, the collection is updated, and new titles are added. These games range from major retail releases like Borderlands and Vanquish, to smaller Indie games like Outland, PS1 Classics, and even PlayStation Minis. Personally, I’ve been a supporter of the service since day 1, and if you haven’t thought about purchasing a subscription, you’ve got to be nuts.

    In its first year, PlayStation Plus gave gamers access to scores of games, and hundreds of dollars in discounts, and more and more publishers and developers came on board. In March of 2011, the family of features grew yet larger, with the addition of cloud-based storage for game saves, allowing subscribers to upload and retrieve their precious saves - a handy option for the perpetually paranoid or those with multiple systems.

    PlayStation Plus went from strength to strength, and with it the PlayStation brand. But as students of history will note, Sony has a long-standing tradition of royally messing up a good thing, and just around the corner, a storm was brewing...




    Quote Originally Posted by Nagflar
    Red Dead Redemption was first announced in 2009, but many people didn't really seem to care. Which was understandable, really, given that it was a spiritual sequel to the underwhelming Red Dead Revolver - not to mention most people were more interested in other Rockstar franchises like Grand Theft Auto and Midnight Club. As months passed and information and trailers emerged, though, all this changed, as the game gained widespread attention, leading to a rapid growth of interest from the community. The Old West had never seemed so interesting, and with the Rockstar name behind it, people couldn't help but be excited.

    Red Dead Redemption's story takes place in 1911, when John Marston, a retired outlaw, is approached by the Bureau of Investigation who seek his aid in bringing his old gangmates to justice - dead or alive. To ‘ensure’ his cooperation, they take his wife and young son from him, and thus begins John's gritty tale of revenge and redemption in a world that's slowly but surely changing and leaving him and his ilk behind.

    Red Dead Redemption is a sandbox game that perfectly captured the essence and lifestyle of the Old West. It felt unique and fresh, and even if it played similarly to GTAIV, the comparisons weren't big enough to call it a ‘copy.’ You could ride your horse through the beautifully rendered world that Rockstar had created, all the while battling your way through bandit hideouts, hunting for pelts, dueling outlaws, and outrunning the marshals, among many other things. The whole experience was thoroughly immersing, and unlike any other game of its time.

    If you ever felt lonely riding through the desert on a horse with no name, you could jump online and play some of the fantastic multiplayer which, aside from featuring your typical deathmatch/team deathmatch/capture the flag offerings, you were also free to roam the same massive open world from the singleplayer (with all the same side-quests and bandit hideouts to boot), which could be extremely fun with a posse of mates. To this day, the multiplayer remains active, which certainly attests to its quality.

    Rockstar continued to support RDR well after its release with some excellent multiplayer and singleplayer DLC, including the award-winning Undead Nightmare expansion, all of which is available together in the Game of the Year edition, which you can pick up anywhere for less than $20. Even if you’re not a fan of Rockstar’s other games, Red Dead Redemption is one game you should not miss.




    Quote Originally Posted by Rubicant
    When LittleBigPlanet introduced the Play, Create and Share concept to the PlayStation 3 ecosystem in 2008, thousands of gamers the world over were charmed by Sackboy and his adventures to save creativity villainous Collector. With a charming story (narrated by the incomparable Stephen Fry), and a seemingly endless supply of user-generated content (literally hundreds of thousands of unique levels were created by gamers), it surely it couldn't get any better than what LBP offered for one of PlayStation 3's breakout franchises?

    Fast-Forward three years to 2011, and LittleBigPlanet 2 expanded further on the framework that the original title introduced, and allowed deeper customization for those who wanted to expand further the boundaries of their creativity. With new templates, AI controls, musical options, and tools, creators were able expand further on the user-generated content and it wasn't long until a million unique levels existed for people to play. The best part of it all was all the levels created by users, as well as all downloadable content, from the first game were also playable in the sequel!

    Sackboy wasn't tossed by the wayside either, and had a bigger more robust adventure for players to delve into as a new antagonist called The Negativitron (what a mouth full!) attempts to suck up all the components of LittleBigPlanet and eliminate imagination forever. With everything being tighter, bigger, and more varied, the campaign for LBP2 upped the ante and made each and every prize bubble that much more exciting to catch.

    With iterations on the PSP and Vita, a Move game pack, a Kart racer, and the announced Free-To-Play LittleBigPlanet Hub coming to PlayStation 4, LBP is a franchise with much more stuffing to spare. With Sackboy being one of the more memorable breakout stars, this is one franchise that gamers of all ages can enjoy. You really cannot go wrong with either of the PS3 games, but if you want the most bang for your buck, LittleBigPlanet 2 is the way to go.




    Quote Originally Posted by Nagflar
    The original Mass Effect, released in 2007, was a fantastically ambitious space-opera action RPG from the genre titans at BioWare that was, to the disappointment of PS3 gamers, an Xbox 360 Exclusive (at least until December 2012). Set in a future in which humans have established colonies across the vastness of space, you played as Commander Shepard, the first Human to join the Spectre corps (intra-galactic peacekeepers), on a mission to bring a traitor to justice and restore stability to the galaxy.

    Thankfully, the next installment, Mass Effect 2, was a multi-platform release and PlayStation owners were given the opportunity to try one of this generation’s best franchises. Bundled with an interactive digital comic that caught you up with the events of the previous game, Mass Effect 2 continued the epic saga of galactic adventuring with markedly better gameplay, better graphics, and even more naked space babes.

    Once again taking on the role of Commander Shepard, players get to explore (and shoot their way through) a vast universe in an effort to warn the galaxy about an evil and ancient threat, finding companions along the way who can join you in quest to save all sentient life in the universe.

    The game blends tactical third-person shooter mechanics with Western RPG elements, such as gaining experience and leveling up, character customization and, most importantly, freedom of choice. At its heart, Mass Effect is a game about taking charge and making choices and decisions, the consequences of which can be minor or monumental (and might not even be apparent until the next game). You can influence all kinds of things, from your relationships with your squad-mates to the way you're perceived by the rest of the galaxy.

    Easily one of the best RPG series of its generation, the Mass Effect trilogy is now fully available on PlayStation 3, so do yourself a favor and strap yourself in for one of the best adventures to grace home consoles.




    Quote Originally Posted by Nagflar
    Released in 2010 as part of The Orange Box (often regarded as one of the best bundles in gaming), Portal was a fantastic little puzzle-platformer game that tasked gamers with solving a series of increasingly more difficult challenges and tests using the Aperture Science Handheld Portal Device, or ‘Portal Gun’ – a device that could be used to create portals on flat surfaces through which matter, including the player, could pass between instantaneously. You played as Chell, a young woman who wakes up inside the Aperture Science Laboratories to discover she is the prisoner of the benevolent, and somewhat unstable, GLaDOS, a highly intelligent artificial intelligence who forces Chell to perform tests (which constitute the game’s puzzles) “for science.”

    Portal was widely loved by critics, gamers and casuals all over the world for its crazy first-person puzzle-platforming gameplay and its top-notch writing, and quickly became a cult-classic. So it was only natural that Valve would develop a sequel, and it came in the form of Portal 2, which was released on March, 2011 - much to the joy of the gaming community (and Valve's bank account).

    While Portal felt more like a concept demo than a full game (clocking in at under 3hrs for a playthrough), Portal 2 was the real deal. It had, at its heart, all the same core tenets as the original, but enhanced and expanded them in a big way, with a full-length campaign, a story that delved into the history of Aperture Science, an insane cast of characters (realized with some terrific voice acting), and all new puzzles, mechanics and challenges that could mess with your brain for hours.

    Portal 2 also retained the same razor sharp wit and subversive dark comedy that the first game was famous for – an especially impressive feat, given how difficult it is to create and present humor in video games, let alone a sequel. Whether it was the homicidal, passive-aggressive musings of the psychotic GLaDOS, or the awkward monologues of the inept AI Core ‘Wheatley’ (voiced by the hilarious Stephen Merchant), Portal 2 had enough material to keep you in stitches from start to finish, and then some.

    Valve also saw fit to create a two-player co-operative campaign, which only helped make the game better. Players took control of two robots named Atlas and P-Body who, like Chell, are forced to perform tests by GLaDOS, which led to all sorts of fun and friendship-breaking "errors" as both players tried to solve puzzles, using not one but two separate portal guns. The mode was even better thanks to Valve partnering with Sony to allow cross-platform play between PlayStation 3 and PC (via Steam).

    Portal 2 is easily one of the most original, intelligent, and outright fun games around, so if you haven’t already, please test it out. For science. You monster.




    Quote Originally Posted by Faust
    For the longest time, Sony had two titan developers in its stable producing top-quality action plaformers: Naughty Dog and Insomniac. But there was a third, far less appreciated developer always toiling away in the background, producing quality games that always seemed destined to be eclipsed by the likes of Ratchet & Clank and Jak & Daxter. That developer was Sucker Punch, who established themselves as noteworthy developers with their PlayStation 2 series Sly Cooper. Like Naughty Dog and Insomniac, Sucker Punch too pursued a new franchise on the PlayStation 3, and in doing so gave us one of the console’s very best exclusives.

    Released in May, 2009, InFamous was a significant departure from Sucker Punch’s previous games, not only in terms of gameplay and presentation, but maturity and scale. Set in the fictional Empire City, you played as Cole McGrath, a bike courier who becomes imbued with awesome and terrifying powers after accidentally activating a device called the ‘Ray Sphere’ that he was supposed to be delivering. The activation of the device causes a massive explosion, killing thousands, and plunging Empire city into chaos. Cordoned off by the government, the city is left to fend for itself, and soon falls prey to violent gangs and terrorists, who exploit the chaos to seize power. As Cole you have the choice to use your newfound powers for the good of the city, or for your own selfish needs, all the while discovering your true potential, and uncovering the mysterious origins of the Ray Sphere.

    With a narrative heavily inspired by comic books and superheroes/villains, InFamous was an awesome game that empowered you with amazing abilities, and gave you a massive sandbox for you to play around in. Its gameplay was intuitive and insanely fun, and its karma system, while a little contrived (all choices were polar – e.g. feed a family, or murder them all), was a great reason to play through a second time to see how your choices would impact the story. With its ‘more-questions-than-answers’ ending, fans eagerly awaited a sequel, which they got in June of 2011.

    InFamous 2 followed the formula of its predecessor, while giving you an all-new city to explore and even more incredible powers to use/abuse. Taking place directly after the events of the first game, Cole heads to the New Orleans-inspired city of New Marais in search of answers and the means to defeating ‘The Beast’, an immensely powerful enemy (alluded to in the first game) rampaging down the east coast of America, straight towards New Marais.

    In all honesty, inFamous 2 was really just more of the same, just with a nicer coat of paint and a fresh setting, but that’s not a criticism. Few other games can equal the pure joy that you get from playing either game, as you surf across power lines shooting lightning bolts from your fingertips, before dive-bombing a group of enemies from 25 stories up, picking yourself up, and walking away without a scratch.

    Both games, along with the fantastic Festival of Blood expansion, are available as part of the inFamous Collection, and are well worth your time. With inFamous: Second Son for PlayStation 4 on the horizon, now is as good a time as any to check out this fantastic series.


    Credits:

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    Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5
    Last edited by Faust; 12-31-2013 at 07:30 AM.

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    Part 4 will be coming to you guys later today, but for now, please enjoy

    Merry Christmas from the site staff!

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    Finally! jk jk, Well done Faust n crew. And good looking list as well.


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    These are all top-quality games.

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    One of my regrets with regards to Playstation is that I didn't get Ps+ sooner! One of the best things I've purchased and well worth the money imo. I also enjoyed the read for Infamous 2, which I still have to play. I thoroughly enjoyed the 1st and I look forward to eventually playing the 2nd installment. Thanks for the list and Merry Christmas to the staff aswell

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    Only 1 I haven't played (and gotten the sweet in) is Mass Effect 2 (or the rest of the series for that matter). I agree with the choices though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by john3007 View Post
    One of my regrets with regards to Playstation is that I didn't get Ps+ sooner!
    I've been on PS+ from the start and my only regret is buying a game and having it show up within a month on PS+, which has happened at least a dozen times now . Fortunately, most offending games are still in shrink-wrap awaiting disposal on eBay.

    PS+ is the fucking shit, so much so that I subscribe on both my AU and US accounts and have saved thousands of dollars in the process. And if you're a Vita owner, there's been almost no reason to spend a cent on games to date.

    Quote Originally Posted by Vettes View Post
    Only 1 I haven't played (and gotten the sweet in) is Mass Effect 2 (or the rest of the series for that matter).
    Dude...really? You've gotta sort that shit out.

    ME2 is my game and ME is my series of the last generation. I genuinely have difficulty playing any other RPGs because Bioware fucking nailed the space opera with the ME trilogy. There are very few games that I can say made me remorseful for having to put down the controller and move on. ME 2 and 3 did that for me :sadpanda:

    PSN | Steam | XBL | Wii U | 3DS | iOS | OUYA : ant1th3s1s | Checklist of the Year (2012,2013)

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    PS+ has given me so much since Day 1, it was a masterstroke even before the IGC became more solid and varied, one of the highlights of the generation.

    Game wise, well Mass Effect 2 still remains unplayed ( though that sale price has me tempted ) and Infamous 2, though miles better than the humdrum first still just didn't click with me. Portal 2 and Red Dead are two of the finest titles i've experienced on PS3, LBP 2 was an improvement on the original but the original was fresher and more exciting for me.

    Another good selection though, look forward to Part 4.
    Credit to the awesome ERICVOLTAGE for that. ^

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    Getting PS+ was the best decision of my life (kinda). It made me buy a Vita, because with all the free games, I had no reason anymore to not buy one.

    Good job and looking forward to part 4!
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    All good quality games. I wished I got into Mass Effect years ago. Better late than never I guess.




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    Quote Originally Posted by john3007 View Post
    One of my regrets with regards to Playstation is that I didn't get Ps+ sooner! One of the best things I've purchased and well worth the money imo.
    Same here man, I wish I'd subscribed sooner.

    I've played all of those games except for Portal 2 and I agree with most of the choices, nice one.


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