What was the most surprising game you played this year?
I have a habit of over researching games before I buy them - I hate getting a crap game unexpectedly - so it is rare that a game really surprises me.
However, Bastion managed just that. It is the first game in a very long time I've picked up almost on a whim. In fact it managed to convince me to buy it based almost entirely on the first few minutes of its demo. It grabbed my attention with it's unusual narration and beautiful visual, then held on to it until I'd played the game end to end, twice.
What was the best game you wanted to play this year but didn't?
I've actually managed to play pretty much all of what I was interested in this year. I've a few big Christmas-season releases outstanding (Batman: Arkham City and Assassins Creed Revelations), but I'm in no rush to pick them up, and all the various indie bundles have pretty much satisfied me from that direction.
What was the worst game you played this year?
Brink. It's not really a bad game as such, but it was rather disappointing. The gameplay ended up being quite bland and it failed to deliver on the quality of narrative promised in the build up. Murmurs before release about it being a challenger against TF2 were ultimately wrong as it ended up being fairly mediocre all round.
It's such a shame too, with the world they've crafted they could do so much better...
What game are you looking forward to the most next year?
There's plenty of big titles coming next year: Mass Effect 3, GTA5, Tomb Raider and Borderlands 2 are all sitting on my radar at the moment, and I'll probably play them all but I'm not giddily enthused about any at the moment.
What I'd really like, however, is another awesome indie game to crop up and really hit the spot. This year has been the first that I've seriously played a wide number of indie's (partly thanks to Gaming.SE inadvertently advertising them to me) and will be playing many more from here on in; there's just so many interesting things to find here.
What is your Game of the Year?
Portal 2 was funny and clever, but just didn't feel as special as the first (thou' the co-op was fantastic).
Skyrim's a great huge time sink, but has a few too many issues bogging it down.
Deus EX: HR was good, but the ending tainted the experience for me.
SpaceChem is just down right clever. But frankly can be a little bit forgettable.
Frozen Synapse is probably the most multiplayer I've played in years, but rather niche.
Assassins Creed is great, but growing little formulaic (I've not played Rev yet, but the rest this year).
Zelda is fun, but massively formulaic and has a little too much hand-holding for my tastes.
LA Noire is turning out pretty interesting, but took too long to really get going.
So, I think, this has to go to Bastion from me. Clever, unique, beautiful and fun. It kept me gripped end-to-end, twice, and even convinced me to buy the soundtrack (an extremely rare occurrence as I rarely listen to music).