Kenny’s Pick: Portal 2
I know what you’re thinking; “How could you choose Portal 2 over Skyrim?!” I’ll tell you several reasons, the first being the writing. Skyrim is in no ways a bad game, quite the opposite, but can you name one memorable line of dialog not spoken by a guard not just in Skyrim, but the whole of the Elder Scrolls franchise? I can’t think of one, but there are countless in both Portal games. From the AI cores, to GlaDOS’ comments on Chell’s weight, to the pure gold that is every line that Cave Johnson speaks, every piece of dialog is witty, memorable, and hilarious. I would rather hear Johnson’s lemon tirade over “arrow to the knee” any day.
Whenever you aren’t laughing at and memorizing every piece of comedic gold spoken by the cast you are solving some of the most clever, interesting puzzles in gaming, rivaled only by the Layton games. Probably the best part of the game’s puzzle solving is the perfect pacing that Valve implements. Right when you finally get a grasp of the basic portaling, lasers are introduced; whenever you think you’ve mastered lasers, faith plates are introduced. This cycle continues until all of the game’s clever mechanics have been introduced, adding up to about 60 chambers of glorious science.
Simply put, Portal 2 is pure, entertaining, puzzling bliss, with a stellar Jonathan Coulton song to boot! While Skyrim will last you 200 hours, Portal 2 is 15 hours of hilarious, well written, perfectly paced single player, and an even larger amount of mind bending Co-op backed by even more free DLC that will leave you in awe and wishing that Valve could count to three.
Runners Up/Other Picks:
Elder Scrolls V Skyrim
Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword