Now that we are officially in 2013, and to keep up with our ‘Best of 2012’ blogs, I wanted to take a look back at the video games and comic books that made 2012 so awesome. In 2012, we saw some great video games, as well as some really big comic book events. The Wii U was released, DC’s New 52 is now in full force, and Marvel NOW! has continued to throw out some really big titles. Here is my breakdown of the ‘Best of 2012’:
Topic Video Games:
Pokémon Black & White 2, PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, and Halo 4
My first recommendation is Pokémon Black 2 & White 2. Although it may be a sequel, this game surely stands out on its own. By continuing the story of Black and White, this sequel provided long-time fans with what they were craving: more Pokémon. When you start off your journey, you are able to run into Pokémon from any generation, which is a nice added feature. This then presents one of the greatest challenges in any Pokémon game. When a player completes his or her National Pokédex by seeing all 649 Pokémon (excluding certain ‘event only’ Pokémon to make it fair), a Shining Charm is awarded. When a player has a Shining Charm in the bag, it increases the odds of finding a shiny to 1 in 2,370.6, which are significantly better odds compared to the normal 1 in 8,192. Overall, I was very pleased with this game and thought it was a great addition to the Poké family.
As I said previously, PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale was a game that I eagerly awaited. Although there may be a limited lineup of characters, I have fully enjoyed this game. When I first heard of the game, I assumed it would be a direct copy of the Super Smash Bros. franchise. To my surprise, the game is still unique in its own way. By creating a battle system of charging up ‘finisher moves’ to defeat other characters, it adds an entirely different play style in comparison to other fighting games. I have already banked a lot of playtime into this game and have my fingers crossed for the wishful possibility of a future DLC with more characters.
Finally, I had to give my respects to Halo 4. As Bungie stepped down and 343 Industries took over, gamers were surprised to see a return to Halo games they know and love. In my opinion, Halo: Reach was a fun game, but I enjoyed Halo 3 much more. I wasn’t a big fan of the power-ups in Reach, so Halo 4 brought a smile back to my face. What made Halo 4 great? For one, power-ups were toned down, grenades are less devastating, and solid maps were created. If you have been a Halo fan in the past, I am sure you will enjoy Halo 4.
Top Comic Series:
Batman, Saga, and Hawkeye
First, I have to hand it to Baman, part of the DC New 52 reboot. This comic has done nothing but impress. Written by Scott Snyder and artwork by Greg Capullo, this has been a phenomenal run. This comic not only highlights Batman’s power and strength, but it also emphasizes the clever detective side of Batman. In this book, you get to see the entire Bat family, which is always a treat. This year’s biggest event is the ongoing Death of the Family arc, where the Joker has returned, with his face cut off, to wreak havoc in every Bat book. Although this is a major crossover, there has not been a single crossover that forces you to buy other series, which scores major brownie points for me. Batman has been awesome, so I look forward to seeing where the series take us in 2013.
Saga has been nothing short of amazing. The enticing story is written by Brian K. Vaughan and the astounding artwork is done by Fiona Staples. If you have not had a chance to experience Image’s Saga, then I highly recommend you check it out. Less than 10 issues have been written, but they are all pure gold. It will be the best $2.99 you will spend on a comic book.
Hawkeye has also been an unbelievable title. With story by Matt Fraction and artwork by David Aja, all seem to love this book. Taking a superhero such as Hawkeye is quite a challenge. He is not your standard superhero like Superman or Batman, but this comic has really shown Hawkeye in all his glory. The artwork is absolutely stunning and I have yet to seen a comic that is similar. If you want a comic that is modern, new, and a great read, the I highly recommend checkout out Hawkeye.
Memorable 2012 Events:
In The Amazing Spider-Man #700, our friendly neighborhood Spiderman, the one and only Peter Parker, met his demise battling Dr. Otto ‘Ock’ Octavius. Doc Ock switched bodies with Peter Parker using a new technological creation. In a decaying body, Peter Parker did everything he could to defeat Doc Ock and regain his rightful body, but unfortunately, it was not enough. After 50 wonderful years, our web-slinging crusader, The Amazing Spider-Man, has come to an end. Doc Ock, after having a moment of self-realization, vows to carry on Peter Parker’s image and fulfill Spidey’s duties in the new Superior Spider-Man title.
Joel blogged about this earlier, but perhaps one of the biggest announcements this year was the announcement of Pokémon X and Pokémon Y for the 3DS. With 3D graphics and an entirely new world of Pokémon, the new generation is sure to impress!
The Walking Dead has been a phenomenal comic series. G&C would like to send a big congratulations to the team for making it to issue #100 this past summer. Keep up the good work!
Similar to DC’s New 52, Marvel countered with their own wave of new comics called Marvel NOW!. The objective of Marvel NOW! is to make comic books more accessible to casual readers and people who wanted to get into comics. While DC started with origin stories, Marvel took a different route starting with their issue #1s. Basically, Marvel left an opportunity in each characters story for readers to jump on. Origins were not discussed, but anybody can hop on any of the #1 issues and have an easy time understanding what is happening. Some of Marvel’s top writers and artists are taking on huge titles such as Avengers, Superior Spider-Man, Thor, Hulk, and X-Men. Click here for a full list of all Marvel NOW! titles and their corresponding release dates.
The first contender in the next generation of main consoles occurred with the release of the Wii U. With complaints that the Wii did not provide hardcore gamers and longtime Nintendo fans with quality video games, Nintendo responded with the Wii U. With the innovative tablet adding an entirely new dimension of gaming, I look forward to seeing where the future of this console goes.
The release of 3DS XL improved upon the imperfections of the 3DS. As the 3DS continues to release and announce really great games, I look forward to seeing its success.
Last, but certainly not least, is perhaps the most important event for Game&Comic: Our very own creation! Our website was created at the end of May 2012 and we are very happy with what it has become. We have a Facebook Page, a Twitter @GameandComic, and we even have stickers! If you would like one, send us a message! We would love to give you one. We hope that you have enjoyed everything we have posted so far, I know we sure have! We are anxiously awaiting to see where 2013 takes us! Thanks for the continued support!