Later today I will post my list of my 10 favorite gaming moments of 2008. I've done the same thing each of the last three years.
These lists do not list my favorite games of the year. Instead they list the moments in games I least want to forget: high points of 40 hour treks, spectacular surprises in silly little pet training and puzzle games.
These are the moments when games allow great things to happen -- allow you to make great things happen -- that any other form of entertainment can't hope to accomplish.
Here are my lists for 2005, 1006 and 2007. Ready for some nostalgia?
- Arguing With The Panda King: “Sly 3” (PlayStation 2)
- Assisting Digestion: “WarioWare Twisted” (Game Boy Advance)
- Battling A Virtual Chef: “EyeToy Play 2” (PlayStation 2)
- Clearing The Screen: “Lumines” (PSP)
- Climbing A Giant’s Beard: “Shadow of the Colossus” (PlayStation 2)
- Rolling A Rainstorm: “We Love Katamari” (PlayStation 2)
- Sketching One’s Own Wanted Poster: “Indigo Prophecy” (Xbox/PC/PlayStation 2)
- Feeling Guilty: “God Of War” (PlayStation 2)
- Training A Sheepdog: “Nintendogs” (Nintendo DS)
- Waiting For The Washing Machine: “World Of Warcraft” (PC)
- The 60-Brick Bonus: “Lego Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy” (PS2, GameCube, Xbox 360)
- The 66-Pin Strike: “Wii Sports” (Nintendo Wii)
- Bomb the Bridge: “Marc Ecko’s Getting Up” (PS2)
- Dog Throws The Car: “Half-Life 2: Episode One” (PC)
- Jack Bauer Goes On Tour: “24: The Game” (PS2)
- “Mario” Meets “Spy Hunter” With One Giant Leap: “Pursuit Force” (PSP)
- Hearing The Sound Of Victory: “Sound Voyager” (Game Boy Advance)
- Tea Time With Mrs. Sanderson: “Chibi-Robo” (GameCube)
- The Toilet-Paper Toss: “Bully” (PS2)
- Feeling The Video Game Blues: “Defcon” (PC)
- A Change of Clothes: “BioShock” (Xbox 360) — I can’t say more without spoiling things.
- Defense for the Wicked?: “Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Justice for All” (Nintendo DS) — I wrote about this late-game morality twist in August [0f 2007].
- Eating the Perfect Pellets: “Pac-Man Championship Edition” (Xbox 360’s Xbox Live Arcade) — The act of thread a “Pac-Man” maze like a master, a skill “Championship Edition” teaches and then forces players to execute like a pro — faster and faster.
- Freefall Problem-Solving: “Zack & Wiki: Quest for Barbaros’ Treasure” (Nintendo Wii) — The game’s first puzzle? Make yourself a parachute while you drop through the sky like a stone.
- A New Way of Jumping: “Portal” (PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360) — No surprise here. I already wrote about this as video games’ move of the year .
- The Slow-Mo Arrow: “Heavenly Sword” (PlayStation 3) — Riding the back of an arrow, steering with a Sixaxis, this is motion control at its finest in 2007, on the PS3 of all things.
- Stumbling Through Not-Really-Iraq: “Call of Duty 4” (PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360) — It happens after a big explosion. Anything more is a spoiler.
- The Tide of the Flood: “Halo 3” (Xbox 360) — The moment in the Covenant level when they start animating corpses and coming back at you; it had happened in earlier games, but never quite with this kind of punch.
- The Undoing of a Contract Killer: “The Darkness” (PS3, Xbox 360) — A personal favorite, a bug in this FPS turned an already unusual first-person dating scene into an accidentally profound encounter.
- Wonder of the World: “God of War 2” (PlayStation 2) — The opening level. Who wasn’t amazed by that one?
Later today: My 10 Favorite Gaming Moments of 2008