Midyear Report: The Best Games of 2010 So Far

  • Publish Date: July 2, 2010
  • Comments: ↓ 69 user comments

Xbox 360

Image
Metascore Breakdown
Good / So-So / Bad:
46,44,9
2010 Releases (1/1 - 6/30)
Avg. Metascore 70.6
vs. 2009 Avg. * 67.7

* Through 6/30/09

While it may not have been a good half-year for 360 exclusives -- only the episodic, Twin Peaks-influenced thriller Alan Wake 83 impressed critics, and even then not as much as once hoped -- the platform tied the PS3 for the largest number of "great" games (with Metascores of 90 or higher) released so far this year, with four multi-platform releases achieving that mark in their 360 versions. 2010 has been especially good to Xbox-owning action game fans, with titles from Mass Effect 2 96 to Bayonetta 90 scoring critical acclaim. But well under half of all Xbox games received good reviews, and no other platform saw as many critically-panned releases over the past six months.

The best-selling 360 release of the year so far is Rockstar Games' western Red Dead Redemption 95, with over 2.4 million units sold to date, with Battlefield: Bad Company 2 88 close behind. Overall, however, the Xbox trails both the Wii and the PS3 in terms of total games sold worldwide over the past six months.

Best Xbox 360 Exclusives, 2010 (through June 30)
1 2 3 4 5
Image Image Image Image Image
Alan Wake Toy Soldiers Lazy Raiders Snoopy Flying Ace Chime
Critics: 83 Critics: 81 Critics: 80 Critics: 79 Critics: 79
Users: 8.9 Users: 8.8 Users: 9.9 Users: 9.1 Users: 9.4
Best-Reviewed Xbox 360 Games, 2010 (through June 30)
  Game Publisher Genre Metascore Users
1 Mass Effect 2 Electronic Arts Action-RPG 96 8.9
2 Red Dead Redemption Rockstar Games Action/Shooter 95 9.0
3 Super Street Fighter IV Capcom Fighting 91 8.2
4 Bayonetta Sega Action 90 7.6
5 BioShock 2 2K Games Shooter 88 8.4
6 Battlefield: Bad Company 2 Electronic Arts Shooter 88 8.8
7 Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Conviction Ubisoft Action-Adv. 85 7.7
8 Borderlands: The Secret Armory of General Knoxx 2K Games Shooter/RPG 85 9.4
9 UFC Undisputed 2010 THQ Fighting 84 6.8
10 The Misadventures of P. B. Winterbottom 2K Play Platform 83 7.4
11 Darksiders THQ Action-Adv. 83 7.7
12 Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 Electronic Arts Sports 83 8.2
13 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa Electronic Arts Sports 83 8.0
14 Alan Wake Microsoft Action-Adv. 83 8.9
15 Blur Activision Racing 82 8.3
... and the worst:
93 Things on Wheels Focus Home Int. Racing 43 3.3
94 Iron Man 2 Sega Action 41 4.9
95 Prison Break: The Conspiracy Deep Silver Action-Adv. 40 4.5
96 Attack of the Movies 3-D Majesco Ent. Action 39 n/a
97 Pure Futbol Ubisoft Sports 36 8.4

PlayStation 3

Image
Metascore Breakdown
Good / So-So / Bad:
56,38,6
Avg. Metascore 72.9
2010 Releases (1/1 - 6/30)
vs. 2009 Avg. * 69.4

* Through 6/30/09

Thanks to titles like the sequel God of War III 92 and the wholly unique Heavy Rain 87, it has been a good 2010 so far for the PS3 as a whole and for PS3 exclusives specifically, with the PlayStation leading all consoles in average Metascore. Although the PS3 still trailed well behind the Xbox in total number of games released, it made up for the quantity gap with quality; an impressive 56% of all new PS3 games this year received positive reviews from critics.

As we indicated above, there were actually more PS3 games sold over the past six months than Xbox 360 games, with God of War III -- the best-selling game of the year so far for any platform -- leading the way. That title and four other new PS3 games have already exceeded one million units sold, though Final Fantasy XIII 83 is the only other PS3 release to sell more than two million units so far this year.

Best PS3 Exclusives, 2010 (through June 30)
1 2 3 4 5
Image Image Image Image Image
God of War III Heavy Rain Joe Danger Yakuza 3 Soldner-X 2: Final Prototype
Critics: 92 Critics: 87 Critics: 86 Critics: 80 Critics: 78
Users: 8.6 Users: 6.2 Users: 9.5 Users: 8.6 Users: 9.0
Best-Reviewed PS3 Games, 2010 (through June 30)
  Game Publisher Genre Metascore Users
1 Red Dead Redemption Rockstar Games Action/Shooter 95 8.0
2 God of War III Sony Action-Adv. 92 8.6
3 Super Street Fighter IV Capcom Fighting 92 8.0
4 MLB 10: The Show Sony Sports 91 9.3
5 Battlefield: Bad Company 2 Electronic Arts Shooter 88 8.7
6 BioShock 2 2K Games Shooter 88 9.0
7 Heavy Rain Sony Adventure 87 6.2
8 Joe Danger Hello Games Action 87 9.5
9 Bayonetta Sega Action 87 7.5
10 Sam & Max: The Devil's Playhouse
Episode 2 - The Tomb of Sammun-Mak
TellTale Games Action 86 n/a
11 UFC Undisputed 2010 THQ Fighting 86 7.7
12 Borderlands: The Secret Armory of General Knoxx 2K Games Shooter/RPG 85 7.4
13 Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 Electronic Arts Sports 85 9.0
14 Split/Second Disney Racing 84 8.5
15 Final Fantasy XIII Square Enix RPG 83 8.6
... and the worst:
73 Clash of the Titans Namco Bandai Action-Adv. 46 6.0
74 Last Rebellion NIS America Action-RPG 44 6.6
75 Prison Break: The Conspiracy Deep Silver Action-Adv. 41 5.3
76 Iron Man 2 Sega Action 40 5.6
77 Kick-Ass WHA Ent. Fighting 29 2.0

Note that games are ranked prior to rounding. Only games with 7 or more reviews included.

Wii

Image
Metascore Breakdown
Good / So-So / Bad:
45,48,7
2010 Releases (1/1 - 6/30)
Avg. Metascore 70.8
vs. 2009 Avg. * 67.0

* Through 6/30/09

While the Wii still has too few great games and too many middling titles to please some hardcore gamers, the platform does boast the overall best-reviewed game of 2010 so far: Super Mario Galaxy 2 98, which is also the highest-scoring game in Wii history. Other platform exclusives, like the surprisingly challenging shooter Sin and Punishment 2: Star Successor 87 and the definitely-not-for-kids No More Heroes 2 85, also scored with critics.

However, the Wii still has a way to go to catch up to other platforms. For example, the so-so Rock Band sequel Green Day: Rock Band 78 managed to crack the top 15 in its Wii version; on the Xbox 360, it ranked as the 37th best game.

Nintendo still has no problem selling Wii games; through the opening months of 2010, over 13 million more titles have been sold for the Wii than for any other platform. However, many of those games are older titles; only SMG2 (with over 2.6 million units sold) managed to crack the one million sales mark out of all 2010 Wii releases, and no other release this year has sold even half a million units.

Best Wii Exclusives, 2010 (through June 30)
1 2 3 4 5
Image Image Image Image Image
Super Mario Galaxy 2 Art of Balance Sin and Punishment 2: Star Successor Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle
Critics: 98 Critics: 88 Critics: 87 Critics: 85 Critics: 85
Users: 9.4 Users: 7.6 Users: 9.0 Users: 9.4 Users: 9.2
Best-Reviewed Wii Games, 2010 (through June 30)
  Game Publisher Genre Metascore Users
1 Super Mario Galaxy 2 Nintendo Action/Platform 98 9.4
2 Cave Story Nicalis Platform 89 9.2
3 Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 Electronic Arts Sports 89 9.3
4 Art of Balance Shin'en Multimedia Puzzle 88 7.6
5 Sin and Punishment 2: Star Successor Nintendo Shooter 87 9.0
6 Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars Capcom Fighting 85 9.4
7 No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle Ubisoft Action 85 9.2
8 Monster Hunter Tri Capcom Action-Adv. 84 9.1
9 Tales of Monkey Island Chapter 5:
Rise of the Pirate God
Telltale Games Adventure 83 8.0
10 Bit.Trip Runner Aksys Games Arcade 82 9.2
11 Mega Man 10 Capcom Action 81 8.1
12 Trauma Team Atlus USA Strategy/Sim 81 9.4
13 Rage of the Gladiator Ghostfire Games Action 81 8.5
14 Red Steel 2 Ubisoft Shooter 80 8.8
15 Green Day: Rock Band MTV Games Music 78 8.0
... and the worst:
40 Rugby League 3 Home Ent. Suppliers Sports 50 7.0
41 GTI Club Supermini Festa! Konami Racing 50 8.0
42 Calling Hudson Ent. Action-Adv. 49 7.0
43 Fast Draw Showdown Digital Leisure Shooter 43 n/a
44 Iron Man 2 Sega Action 41 10.0

More games ...

Continue to the next page for this year's top releases for PC, PSP, and Nintendo DS.

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Comments (69)

  • Josh  

    God of War 3 is still the best.

  • lucas  

    i just hope that mass effect 2 wins game of the year, that or littlebigplanet 2

  • John  

    360/PC games better on 360? Paying for online without dedicated servers sure is great!

  • Phil  

    Oh one more thing: How can you say the console with the most games released this year hasn't had a good year for exclusives? Did you read your own article before posting it? You can argue about the 'critical rating' of these exclusives, but that doesn't mean squat if someone enjoys the title. Look at Ninety Nine Nights 2 (which has reviews out that you guys haven't added to its Metascore yet). Reviews for it are terrible, but the user score is 9.8. So someone somewhere likes it.

  • Phil  

    Are you sure that's all Red Dead sold? I had hear 5 mill a couple weeks back. Also, I distinctly remember Kotaku saying BF:BC2 sold 3 million within about a month and a half. And lastly: NPD > Vgchartz for credibility and accuracy.

  • Josh  

    I was so excited for Red Dead I bought it the second day it was released and.... slightly dissapointing but much better then GTA IV. At least Rockstar is maturing and not resorting to countless sex jokes anymore.

  • Josh  

    I was so excited for Red Dead I bought it the second day it was released and.... slightly dissapointing but much better then GTA IV. At least Rockstar is maturing and not resorting to countless penis and sex jokes anymore.

  • David  

    Really? You're going to disclude ModNation Racers on the PS3 list because there was a completely changed, stripped down version released on the PSP with the same name? LittleBigPlanet also has a version on the PSP, but no one would ever say that the two were the same game.

    I think you should separate it by home console exclusives. Yes some games are released on the PS3 and PSP, but they're nowhere near the same game. Also, a lot of games are released on just the 360 and PC, but most people 360/PC exclusives as being an exclusive for 360 (they're better on the 360 anyway). I just don't think this portrays an accurate depiction of the console wars.

  • a  

    SO MANY GAMES THIS YEAR AND WE'RE ONLY HALF WAY DONE!!

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