Feeds

2011's Best... Games

Line up your holiday entertainment

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Xmas Gift Guide With the likes of Bulletstorm, Gears of War 3 and Frozen Synapse narrowly missing out on my annual list of top ten games, it would seem 2011 has been a pretty decent year for videogames.

The vulture-eyed Reg reader will, however, notice the list is dominated by sequels and franchises – for which I make no apologies. It's simply representative of the industry at present, and, in my opinion at least, reflective of their individual merits – each and every inclusion granted not because of the game's pedigree but in spite of it.

If you'll excuse the aside, it's also worth mentioning the ubiquity of sequels usually heralds the end of each gaming generation. With next-gen details presently limited to speculation, and with the PC still heavily restrained by multi-platform development, the industry is in real danger of stagnating.

While it has successfully navigated cyclical troughs before, it has never done so in the face of such stiff competition. This year's top ten might represent an industry at the top of its game, but another year of reboots and sequels could do irreparable damage given the inexorable rise in smartphone and social gaming.

Batman Arkham City

RH Numbers

Arkham City wasn't simply a much bigger game than Arkham Asylum - just about everything from the original was improved. New stealth moves and gadgets made Batman feel more invincible than ever, and the already excellent one-button combat was polished and refined into arguably the most elegant fighting system in videogame history.

The Joker's relegation to cameo appearance deprived the narrative of its most memorable antagonist, but it was a natural concession to the real star of the game: Arkham City itself. Bursting with character and variety, the vast digital playground was the perfect fit for the comic book source – allowing developer Rocksteady to splice Arkham Asylum's concentrated gameplay with sandbox mechanics and allowing Batman Arkham City to swoop effortlessly in to take 2011's open-world crown from Infamous 2 and Saints Row The Third.

Batman: Arkham City
Reg Rating 90%
Platforms PC, PS3, Xbox
Price £40
More Info BAC Official Site

Battlefield 3

RH Numbers

Have you heard the one about Battlefield 3's Easter Egg? Apparently, there's a full single-player game tucked away on the menu screen right above Multiplayer. It's called Campaign, or something. I mean, who'd have thunk it, eh?

Seriously, though. Ignore the instantly forgettable single-player - BF3 is all about multiplayer mayhem. Whether base jumping from the helipad at Damavand Peak, dogfighting above Caspian Border or suppressing a gagglefuck of noobs in the close quarters labyrinth of Grand Bazaar, BF3 hits the perfect tone between realism and fun.

While the game's Frostbite 2.0 engine impresses across all three platforms, the PC's next-gen graphics coupled with support for 64-combatant multiplayer mean it's the definitive version to own.

Battlefield 3
Reg Rating 85%
Platforms PC, PS3, Xbox
Price £40-50
More Info Battlefield Official Site

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
4K-ing excellent TV is on its way ... in its own sweet time, natch
For decades Hollywood actually binned its 4K files. Doh!
Oi, Tim Cook. Apple Watch. I DARE you to tell me, IN PERSON, that it's secure
State attorney demands Apple CEO bows the knee to him
Apple's big bang: iPhone 6, ANOTHER iPhone 6 Plus and WATCH OUT
Let's >sigh< see what Cupertino has been up to for the past year
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Get your Indian Landfill Android One handsets - they're only SIXTY QUID
Cheap and deafening mobes for the subcontinental masses
Apple's SNEAKY plan: COPY ANDROID. Hello iPhone 6, Watch
Sizes, prices and all – but not for the wrist-o-puter
A SCORCHIO fatboy SSD: Samsung SSD850 PRO 3D V-NAND
4Gb/s speeds on a consumer drive, anyone?
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.