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Gamepressure.com Staff Picks 2010

Below, you can find the best 2010 releases that earned Gamepressure's editorial recommendation.

Fallout: New Vegas
Fallout: New Vegas

RPG 19 October 2010

Fallout: New Vegas is a spin-off to the famous post-apocalyptic cRPG series. The game was developed by Obsidian Entertainment, studio founded by ex-employees of Black Isle Studios (the creators of Fallout and Fallout 2). The story in Fallout: New Vegas focuses on a conflict between two factions: New California Republic and Caesar’s Legion, with the mysterious Mr. House and the citizens of New Vegas in the middle. The player takes on the role of a courier that saved from imminent death by a friendly robot named Victor. In terms of gameplay mechanics, the game copies the solutions from Fallout 3. Depending on your preferences, you can play either in first or third person perspective. Moreover, a well-proven combat system called V.A.T.S. comes back, letting you pause the game and select a part of enemy body you want to aim at. The visuals are powered by a modified version of Gamebryo Engine, previously used e.g. in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion.

PC

Mafia II
Mafia II

Akcji 24 August 2010

A sequel to the popular gangster game - the first Mafia was released in 2002. This new title was developed by the creators of the original game – also known for games like Hidden & Dangerous and Vietcong – working for the 2K Games company. The second part tells a completely new story; however, it contains multiple references to the previous title. The protagonist is a man named Vito Scaletta, who returns to his home city of Empire Bay after the end of Second World War; the city itself is a virtual creation heavily inspired by New York. Trying to find himself in a new, peaceful reality, Vito picks up jobs for the local criminal underground, gradually climbing up the mafia hierarchy. Apart from traditional shootouts with rival gangs, kidnappings, and getaways, there are lots of extra attractions, such as clothing stores and car customization options. A new game engine significantly improved the graphics and features like day and night cycle.

PC

Red Dead Redemption
Red Dead Redemption

Akcji 18 May 2010

The second game in the Rockstar Games’ Wild West video game franchise that began with 2004 release of the successful Red Dead Revolver for sixth generation consoles. Red Dead Redemption tells a completely new, independent story set at the beginning of the 20th century. This time, you play as an outlaw named John Marston. Trying to find his place in the quickly changing reality of the Wild West, he gets entangled into a complex intrigue, which involves cowboys, native americans, and big-shot industrialists. As you play, you get to explore the vast open world, similar in structure to what we know from Grand Theft Auto series, and undertake a series of story missions and numerous side quests. The game features all the famous Wild West hallmarks, including horse chases and showy duels. Thanks to the RAGE engine, known from GTA IV, it was possible to create a true frontier experience with many distinctive locations and characters, multitude of wildlife, dynamically changing weather, and a day and night cycle.

X360

Mass Effect 2
Mass Effect 2

RPG 26 January 2010

A sequel to the bestselling action RPG developed by BioWare, continuing the story of Commander Shepard, who nearly lost his life attacked by a mysterious enemy after having beaten the Reapers during the final moments of Mass Effect. Restored to life by an enigmatic organization called Cerberus and considered rogue by his former allies, the protagonist assembles a team of daredevils capable of facing a new threat: the Collectors. In the game, we meet both the characters we met in the prequel, as well as a cast of entirely new heroes with unique physical and biotic abilities. As far as the gameplay mechanics are concerned, greater emphasis was placed on action elements, including a new, dynamic combat system. Character development and the equipment screen were, in turn, slightly simplified. What’s interesting, we can transfer our character from Mass Effect 1 to play the game. In such case, all moral choices will carry over and have some sort of consequences in Mass Effect 2.

PC

Heavy Rain
Heavy Rain

Przygodowe 23 February 2010

An interactive thriller adventure game developed by studio Quantic Dream (Fahrenheit, Omikron: The Nomad Soul). The player controls several seemingly unrelated characters, each with their own storylines and motivations. How the story develops depends greatly on the decisions made by the player as all plots intertwine until they meet at the game's finale. What’s characteristic for the game is its focus on matters of morality and ethics. The developers took extra care to reflect the various types of human behavior and feelings of the characters in as realistic a way as possible. It can be noticed for example in great facial expressions. The game features high quality graphics with spectacular explosions and realistic weather conditions. It also features a pretty grim vibe that successfully builds an atmosphere of sadness and hopelessness.

PS3

Call of Duty: Black Ops
Call of Duty: Black Ops

Akcji 09 November 2010

A first-person shooter, the seventh installment in the Call of Duty series, and a start of a new sub-series. The game was developed by studio Treyarch, the team responsible for Call of Duty: World at War. The story campaign of Call of Duty: Black Ops is presented in the form of flashbacks suffered by the main protagonist, Alex Mason. Having previously worked for the CIA as a field operative, in his memories Mason returns to the age of Cold War. The game offers several single and multiplayer modes, including cooperation and zombie mode. Call of Duty: Black Ops is is powered by modified versions of IW Engine 3.0 and Demonware.

PC

BioShock 2
BioShock 2

Akcji 09 February 2010

A sequel to 2007's action game BioShock. BioShock 2 was developed by 2K Marin, with the support of Digital Extremes, 2K China, Arkane Studios and Darkside Game Studios. The story is set in the underwater metropolis known as Rapture in year 1968 (eight years after the events of the original game). The player assumes the role of Subject Delta - a Big Daddy prototype. The protagonist has to find the his Little Sister. The administrator of Rapture by the name of Sofia Lamb is trying to prevent it at all cost. The game remains faithful to the original gameplay formula combining FPS elements with certain RPG mechanics. Contrary to the original game though, BioShock 2 offers also a multiplayer experience in the form of seven competition-oriented game modes.

PC

Sid Meier's Civilization V
Sid Meier's Civilization V

Strategiczne 21 September 2010

An extensive turn-based strategy game that came out as the fifth installment in the Civilization series, a popular franchise created by Sid Meier. Sid Meier's Civilization V was developed by Firaxis Games Studios supported by the publishing company Take Two Interactive. In accordance with the tradition of the series, player becomes the leader of a selected nation and leads it throughout a period of several thousand years. Gameplay mechanics underwent no major changes, and the new solutions (such as implementation of neutral city-states, hexagonal map grid, and the limit of one unit per field) are mostly results of evolution of previously employed ideas. Some visible changes were made to the visuals, which are now powered by a brand new graphic engine.

PC

God of War III
God of War III

Akcji 16 March 2010

The third installment in a best-selling slasher series, God of War, and the first one designed for the PlayStation 3 console. The game’s story picks up after the previous two installments, focusing on the war between titans and Olympian gods, fanned by the vengeful Kratos. The gameplay premise does not stray far from the standards of the series, focusing on spectacular battles with numerous opponents and mighty bosses. At the same time, God of War III offers several new weapons, each requiring a different combat style. The protagonist was given a brand new magic system and new, useful artifacts, such as Icarus Wings, Golden Fleece, or the Head of Helios. Thanks to the increased capabilities of PlayStation 3, the third installment in the series sports much better graphics and better AI of enemies.

PS3

Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit
Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit

Wyścigi 16 November 2010

Another installment in one of the most popular racing game series, developed since 1995 by Electronic Arts. Criterion Games, a team popular mainly for the Burnout console series, was entrusted with the task of creating this installment. The title of the game refers to the two earlier installments that featured police pursuits, released in 1998 and 2002 respectively. In the game, the player can pick their side and play either as a cop or a racer. A set of gadgets was introduced into the gameplay, emphasizing the arcade nature of the series. Cops can deploy spike strips and set up road blocks, while the racers can use things like radar jammers. As usual, the game features dozens of licensed cars and a soundtrack including numerous popular songs. The Autolog system is a completely new feature, the role of which is to organize a network of players allowing them to compete against each other.

PC

Napoleon: Total War
Napoleon: Total War

Strategiczne 23 February 2010

Another installment in a renowned series of spectacular strategy games developed by Creative Assembly since 2000. The game focuses on the character of Napoleon Bonaparte and his military conquests at the turn of the 19th century. The player observes his ups and downs during the Italian, the Egyptian, and the European story campaigns. Completing them allows the player to witness both the rise and the fall of his empire. When it comes to the gameplay mechanics, the game introduces only slight modifications. The game combines all the successful mechanics employed in Empire: Total War with a set of new features, such as the system of army provisions, ship repairs, further extension of diplomacy and the increased role of spies. During the battles, the generals (including Bonaparte himself) are of high relevance, as they are capable of punishing the soldiers and bolstering their spirit. Both the visuals and AI of the units were improved.

PC

Alan Wake
Alan Wake

Przygodowe 14 May 2010

A psychological horror third-person action game inspired by the works of Stephen King. It was developed by Remedy Entertainment, the creators of the Max Payne series. The game’s protagonist is an author of widely-read novels who decides to go on vacation to the remote town of Bright Falls in hope of overcoming his writer’s block. After just a few days, Alan’s wife goes missing in unexplained circumstances and the writer sets out to find her. It quickly turns out that the picturesque town hides many secrets, similarly to the location of his latest novel. To save his beloved, Alan has to seek out fragments of his own work by exploring Bright Falls, talking to the people he encounters, and facing evil forces that lurk in the dark. In combat, not only firearms will come in handy but also a torchlight and other light sources which deter and weaken the ghosts. The dark atmosphere is intensified by an atmospheric soundtrack.

X360

Battlefield: Bad Company 2
Battlefield: Bad Company 2

Akcji 02 March 2010

A sequel to 2008's Battlefield: Bad Company - an acclaimed shooter game. Again, the game was created by DICE - a Swedish developer belonging to Electronic Arts. In the story campaign, the player is acquainted with further adventures of the titular Bad Company. This time, Privates Preston Marlowe, Terrence Sweetwater, Corporal George Haggard, and Staff Sergeant Samuel Redford are trying to obtain information on a secret scalar weapon capable of deciding the victor in the war between the United States and Russia. The gameplay here is based on spectacular, first-person shooting sequences, during which the player makes use of various weapons and vehicles. Also, the game offers an extensive multiplayer mode featuring a system of ranks and bonuses.

PC

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow
Castlevania: Lords of Shadow

Akcji 05 October 2010

Another full-fledged installment in the legendary series of action games, developed by the Spanish developer Mercury Steam in cooperating with Konami - the creators of all the previous installments. The protagonist is called Gabriel and he is a member of the Brotherhood of Light. The organization fights evil forces, and Gabriel is given a mission to eliminate the titular Lords of Shadow. However, Gabriel has a personal goal to achieve as well, for he wishes to find and obtain a magical mask, the artifact required to bring his murdered wife back to life. In terms of mechanics, the game reshapes the standard platforming elements of the franchise to fit into the third-person action convention. The player traverses the game world on foot or on horseback, eliminating hordes of enemies encountered on the roads, and facing powerful, demanding bosses. The player makes use of several basic weapon types, including the token combat cross. The combat skills of the protagonist are improved as the game progresses.

X360

StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty
StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty

Strategiczne 27 July 2010

A sequel to a bestselling RTS game released by the Blizzard company in 1998. The story of the second game was split into three separate episodes; Wings of Liberty is the first installment in the trilogy, focusing on Terrans. In the game you meet an old acquaintance - Jim Raynor. Deemed a rebel, now he fights with Zerg forces, who seem to be interested in a mysterious artifact. He also encounters the powerful and mysterious race of Protoss. In comparison with the prequel, gameplay mechanics did not go through any drastic changes, allowing the authors to focus on new, upgraded visuals, multiplayer mode enhancements, and other minor modifications. Single player campaign allows the player to complete the available scenarios in any order and freely choose which technologies to develop. Furthermore, between the missions you can explore the world, talk to non-player characters, and use their services.

PC

Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City
Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City

Akcji 13 April 2010

A set of two story DLCs for the fourth installment in the classic Grand Theft Auto series. It was published as a standalone game, not requiring the base game to launch. The set introduces two separate stories taking place in Liberty City, the metropolis known from GTA III and IV. The Lost and Damned focuses on a biker gang, known as The Lost, trying to gain the upper hand over a competitive criminal organization. The Ballad of Gay Tony casts the player in the role of a bodyguard protecting a night-club king indebted to the wrong kind of people, who are trying to get their money back by any means necessary. Apart from new missions, Episodes from Liberty City brings a handful of improvements and new features. Among these, it is worth mentioning new weapons and an expanded array of vehicles. The player can now use the parachute as well. Additionally, the creators implemented a multiplicity of new activities, mini-games and many multiplayer mode improvements.

PC

Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Conviction
Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Conviction

Akcji 13 April 2010

Next installment of stealth action game series created by Ubisoft company, with agent Sam Fisher. The plot of the game focuses around searching for murderers of the main hero's daughter. While conducting his own investigation he breaks all the contacts with the agency and his old friends. When Sam receives help from his former colleague from Third Echelon, he doesn't realize that it's just a pretext to drag him back to work in the agency.

PCX360

FIFA 11
FIFA 11

Sportowe 28 September 2010

Another installment in the soccer game series by EA Sports. Compared to its predecessor, FIFA 11 features many improvements. One of the biggest novelties is the Personality Plus system, which reflects the player's distinct characteristics in the pitch, making the difference between soccer stars and other players more apparent. The goalkeepers' behavior was also improved, as they estimate the ball's trajectory more realistically now and can be fooled by ricocheting during free kicks. Other improvements include upgraded animations of the players, i.e. during the goal celebration. FIFA 11 allows you to lead your team to victory in a single match or in a campaign-like manager mode. The game also features the Be A Pro mode, in which you take on the role of a given player and develop his skills. You can also compete against others in the online mode.

X360

Limbo
Limbo

Zręcznościowe 21 July 2010

Very unique two-dimensional platformer from the independent developer PlayDead. We play as a small boy who sets on dangerous journey to save his sister. He traverses surrealistic landscapes, coming across many deadly traps and running away from monstrous spider, which follow him tirelessly. In terms of gameplay, Limbo borrows from classic platform titles, though not without adding a few original features. The games revolves around advanced physics, which plays crucial role in most puzzles and arcade sequences, during which the players must display quick reflexes. What stands out the most, however, is Limbo’s unique, mysterious and grim atmosphere, mainly coming from its audiovisuals. Sparse use of sound and graphics, consisting only of shades of black and white, makes it look like a work of a movie expressionist from the beginning of 20th century.

X360

Halo: Reach
Halo: Reach

Akcji 14 September 2010

The next instalment of the legendary Halo series developed by Bungie Software. Halo: Reach is a prequel to the entire series and tells the story of the titular planet Reach, which faces annihilation due to the invasion of the Covenant race.

X360

God of War: Ghost of Sparta
God of War: Ghost of Sparta

Akcji 02 November 2010

The next installment of a series of brutal action games. Again, we play the hateful spartite of Kratos, who this time has to face his own past. The game remains true to the tradition of home consoles and offers clashes with powerful bosses, an advanced combat system, an epic story referring to Greek mythology and a great visual setting.

PSP

NBA 2K11
NBA 2K11

Sportowe 05 October 2010

Twelfth installment of a series of basketball games signed with 2K Sports logo. Players can both play matches by themselves and play in the team manager. In the latter case it is necessary to take care of player training, financial condition of the club, signing contracts and tactical planning. The authors have made a lot of changes to the gameplay engine, which makes it even more realistic.

X360

Gran Turismo 5
Gran Turismo 5

Wyścigi 24 November 2010

The fifth installment in the PlayStation racing game series by Polyphony Digital. Gran Turismo 5 has all the crucial features of its predecessors plus a realistic but a very user-friendly driving system and cutting-edge graphics, worthy of the newest generation of Sony consoles. The game's most important element is still the complex career mode, in which you, as the driver, unlock the more difficult challenges, new cars, and special features of the game by achieving victories and climbing up the success ladder. Gran Turismo 5 features over 1000 licensed cars, divided into two categories—the cars known from the previous parts of the franchise, and new vehicles. You can also customize your car by applying visual and engine tune-ups, and drive it on 70 tracks located all over the world, such as Nürburgring and the Monza Circuit.

PS3

Gray Matter
Gray Matter

Przygodowe 12 November 2010

Adventure by Jane Jensen, writer and long-time employees of Sierra company, responsible, among others, for the creation of the famous Gabriel Knight series. The game tells the story of two heroes - the illusionist Samantha Everett and scientist David Styles. The game is about exploring the location, conducting conversations and solving riddles.

PC

Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II - Chaos Rising
Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II - Chaos Rising

Strategiczne 11 March 2010

A standalone expansion pack for the second installment of the RTS that takes place in the Warhammer 40,000 universe. The game was developed by Relic Entertainment. As the title suggests, Dawn of War II: Chaos Rising concentrates on the faction of the Chaos space marines. The game takes place on the ice-covered planet Aurelia. Thousand years ago the planet was “eaten” by the Warp storm and now it returned bearing the legions of Chaos. During the game the player leads the space marines of the Blood Ravens chapter who must not only face their former brothers, but find a traitor among themselves as well. The biggest change in game mechanics was adding an individual morality meter for each unit. The meter is influenced by corruption and redemption points achieved with the decisions made by the player. Chaos Rising adds a few multiplayer features such as new units for each faction and previously unavailable maps and modes.

PC

Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker
Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker

Akcji 29 April 2010

A hand-held spin-off to the popular series of stealth games developed by Konami. The game was developed for PlayStation Portable and builds upon 2004's Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater. The story of the game shows further life of Big Boss. Together with an army of mercenaries under his command, he travels to Puerto Rico to investigate why the US government, together with CIA, is backing up a military group present on the island. The gameplay mechanics don’t vary very much from the main installments. However, this time the developers focused on a cooperation mode supporting between 2 and 4 players. The players can complete missions together and help each other during difficult battles. A completely new feature introduced in Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker is the option to manage Big Boss’ military base. During the game, player can recruit new soldiers, assign them to various sections and send on missions across the world.

PSP

Battlefield: Bad Company 2 - Vietnam
Battlefield: Bad Company 2 - Vietnam

Akcji 18 December 2010

An expansion pack intended exclusively for the multiplayer mode of the tactical FPS Battlefield: Bad Company 2 by EA Dice. The expansion casts the players into the harsh reality of the titular Vietnam War and features five entirely new maps, none of which lacks the distinctive elements of the said conflict. Therefore, the countless trenches, tunnels, and narrows will make for excellent locations in which you can ambush your opponents. The players have also received numerous additions into their arsenal, namely 15 new weapons from this particular era of warfare and 6 previously unavailable vehicles. Competitive games can take place in several modes introduced in the vanilla version of the game; however, the new equipment and a different setting have somewhat influenced the slightly distinct style of skirmishes, which now favors fast-paced battles in close quarters. Battlefield: Bad Company – Vietnam has been fully integrated with the base version of the game, which means that all of the acquired experience and commendations will be added to the already existing player account.

PC

Football Manager 2011
Football Manager 2011

Sportowe 05 November 2010

The next installment of a well-known football manager by Sports Interactive. Our task is to manage the football club and perform various duties related to it. The new part introduces a system of agents who help recruit good players, as well as a new training system. The audio-visual setting, user interface and the ability to report on one's progress on social networks have also been improved.

PC

Monkey Island 2 Special Edition: LeChuck's Revenge
Monkey Island 2 Special Edition: LeChuck's Revenge

Przygodowe 07 July 2010

Monkey Island 2 Special Edition: LeChuck's Revenge is a remake of a cult adventure story prepared by LucasArts and originally published in 1991. The player directs the actions of pirate Guybrusha Threepwood, who sets out to look for a legendary treasure. The creators remained faithful to the story of the original, enriching the game with a modern audio-visual setting.

PC

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm
World of Warcraft: Cataclysm

RPG 07 December 2010

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm is the third addition to Blizzard Entertainment's best-selling MMORPG. Enlargement is changing the face of the Azeroth world, degrading parts of the regions, but also making new areas available. Among the novelties, the creators introduced, among others, two playable races - goblins and Worgeni, as well as raised the maximum level of characters.

PC

DJ Hero 2
DJ Hero 2

Towarzyskie 19 October 2010

DJ Hero is the second installment of the FreeStyleGames musical series. As in the original in 2009, players have the opportunity to stand behind the console and demonstrate their disc-jockey skills by mixing the hits of bands such as The Chemical Brothers, The Prodigy, House of Pain, or Salt N Pepa. A special controller attached to the game is required to play.

X360