The Best Games of 2009

  • Comments: ↓ 186 user comments
  • Publish Date: December 9, 2009

The best Playstation 3 games of the year

ImageThe top PS3 game of 2009

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves is not only the top Playstation 3 game of the year; it ranks first out of all games for any platform in our database for 2009. Reviews for this PS3 exclusive title were effusive, exceeding the generally positive scores given to its predecessor, 2007's Uncharted: Drake's Fortune. This third-person action-adventure follows fortune hunter Nathan Drake on an expedition to find the legendary Himalayan valley of Shambhala, and critics compared it favorably to a blockbuster movie. It also takes second place on the PS3 all-time list, behind only Grand Theft Auto IV.

Playstation 3 benefited from a strong batch of exclusive titles in 2009, including not just Uncharted 2 but also the God of War Collection, the shooter Killzone 2, role-playing game Demon's Souls, and the latest racer in the WipEout series, WipEout HD Fury, which was released as downloadable content but was as complete as any traditional game, according to critics.

Uncharted 2 was not alone; 35% of games in the Top 40 fell into the action-adventure genre. Sports games were the next best-reviewed, accounting for 20% of the Top 40 titles.

Playstation 3 Top 40 Best-Reviewed Games, 2009
  Title Genre Metascore Users
1Uncharted 2: Among ThievesAction, Adventure969.5
2Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2First-Person Shooter945.4
3Street Fighter IVFighting94 8.0
4BraidPuzzle, Platform939.4
5God of War CollectionAction, Adventure929.5
6Assassin's Creed IIAction, Adventure928.5
7FIFA Soccer 10Sports, Soccer91 8.0
The highest-scoring PS3 sports game of 2009 is also the best-reviewed entry in the FIFA series.
8Killzone 2First-Person Shooter918.3
9Batman: Arkham AsylumAction, Adventure919.1
10MLB 09: The ShowSports, Baseball908.5
11WipEout HD FuryRacing899.1
12Demon's SoulsAction, RPG898.8
13BlazBlue: Calamity TriggerFighting89 9.0
14Beatles: Rock Band, TheMusic889.2
The Fab Four score yet another #1: the top music game of the year for PS3
15NHL 10Sports, Hockey888.8
16Fight Night Round 4Sports, Boxing888.2
17Burnout Paradise: The Ultimate BoxRacing, Driving88 8.0
18DiRT 2Racing, Driving878.3
19Critter CrunchPuzzle879.8
20Dragon Age: OriginsRPG877.6
21FlowerAction879.4
22Ratchet and Clank Future: A Crack in TimeAction, Platform869.2
23Guitar Hero: MetallicaMusic867.2
24ShatterPuzzle, Action86 9.0
25Resident Evil 5Action, Adventure, Horror868.3
26Guitar Hero 5Music865.3
27DJ HeroMusic868.1
28Red Faction: GuerrillaThird-Person Shooter858.3
29Madden NFL 10Sports, Football856.8
30PixelJunk ShooterPuzzle85n/a
31Marvel vs. Capcom 2Fighting, Arcade858.1
32inFAMOUSAction, Adventure858.8
33Battlefield 1943First-Person Shooter848.4
34Skate 2Sports, Extreme Sports848.3
35Need for Speed SHIFTRacing, Driving847.5
36UFC 2009 UndisputedFighting, Action, Sports848.8
37NBA 2K10Sports, Basketball838.4
38BorderlandsFirst-Person Shooter, Action, RPG838.7
39Brutal LegendAction, Adventure83 8.0
40Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2Action, Adventure837.3

Games must have at least 5 reviews to qualify for the above list.

The best Xbox 360 games of the year

ImageThe top Xbox 360 game of 2009

The 360's best-reviewed game of the year was the highly-anticipated first-person shooter Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, which was also released for PS3 and PC. In fact, just three of the top 10 titles in the list below were exclusive to Xbox: the driving sequel Forza Motorsport 3, and two Grand Theft Auto IV spin-offs: The Lost and Damned and The Ballad of Gay Tony. Even the latter two were not completely new games; rather, they revealed new stories and characters using the existing GTA IV world.

Sequels, spin-offs and tie-ins were a common theme for 360 in 2009, but, alas, there was no Halo 4 this year. (A relatively modest sequel, Halo 3: ODST, proved less popular with critics and fans than its predecessor.) One bright spot for the platform, however, was an exclusive Xbox Live Arcade title, Shadow Complex, a Metroid-esque shooter based on an Orson Scott Card novel that received mostly strong notices.

One-third of the games in the Top 40 fell into the action-adventure category, while sports accounted for another 20% of the top spots. There were also a number of well-reviewed racing games to choose from, occupying 13% of the chart.

Xbox 360 Top 40 Best-Reviewed Games, 2009
  Title Genre Metascore Users
1Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2First-Person Shooter94 6.0
2Street Fighter IVFighting937.4
3Batman: Arkham AsylumAction, Adventure928.4
4Forza Motorsport 3Racing, Driving928.1
The top racing game of the year exceeded the already great reviews of its predecessor
5Assassin's Creed IIAction, Adventure918.9
6Grand Theft Auto IV: The Lost and DamnedAction, Adventure907.9
7FIFA Soccer 10Sports, Soccer908.2
8Grand Theft Auto IV: The Ballad of Gay TonyAction, Adventure898.4
9Burnout Paradise: The Ultimate BoxRacing, Driving897.5
10Left 4 Dead 2First-Person Shooter, Action898.1
11Beatles: Rock Band, TheMusic898.8
12PeggleAction898.5
13Shadow ComplexAction, Shooter888.9
14NHL 10Sports, Hockey888.9
15Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition, TheAction, Adventure889.4
16BlazBlue: Calamity TriggerFighting888.6
17Fight Night Round 4Boxing, Sports878.3
18DiRT 2Racing, Driving878.7
19Dragon Age: OriginsRPG867.3
20Trials HDRacing869.4
21Madden NFL 10Sports, Football85 6.0
This year's Madden actually ties 2008's as the highest-scoring installment on the 360
22Guitar Hero 5Music856.7
23Resident Evil 5Action, Adventure, Horror857.8
24Red Faction: GuerrillaThird-Person Shooter858.5
The series transforms into a third-person shooter, and there isn't a better one for Xbox in 2009
25Splosion ManAction, Adventure849.1
26Guitar Hero: MetallicaMusic847.6
27Worms 2: ArmageddonStrategy849.4
28Skate 2Sports, Extreme Sports848.2
29DJ HeroMusic848.6
30BorderlandsFirst-Person Shooter, RPG, Action838.8
31Battlefield 1943First-Person Shooter83 8.0
32Fallout 3: Point LookoutRPG839.3
33Need for Speed SHIFTRacing, Driving836.5
34Halo 3: ODSTFirst-Person Shooter836.3
35Pinball Hall of Fame: The Williams CollectionPinball, Arcade839.5
36NCAA Football 10Sports, Football836.4
37UFC 2009 UndisputedFighting, Action, Sports837.9
38Defense Grid: The AwakeningStrategy, Simulation838.9
39Brutal Legend Action, Adventure828.2
40NBA 2K10Sports, Basketball828.1

Games must have at least 5 reviews to qualify for the above list.

We're sorry, but comments are closed for this article.

Comments (186)

  • jccalhoun  

    I find it very interesting that although PC gaming ranked second in number of good games and number of games released, it is not only discussed 4th, after the Wii, but isn't even mentioned on the writeup on the front page...

  • Radz117  

    Why is the ps3 version of call of duty higher ranked on the top ten list than the 360 version when they have the same scores? Shouldn't they be the same? Or 360 higher seeing as it has the same score but more reviews and better user reviews. Seems like an overly bias article to boost Ps3's reputation... maybe metacritic accepted a large cheque from Sony

  • Logical Thinking (De  

    The PS3 is only high up there because game review sites give games with adequate graphics and no/little multiplayer BS like 5/10 and games with great graphics and multiplayer 9.9/10. Story, gameplay and control don't matter with these guys.

  • Metacritic’s G  

    [...] the full list here, including a breakdown of the best of the best for each console: http://features.metacritic.com/features/2009/the-best-games-of-2009 AKPC_IDS += "1941,";Related ItemsNovember 13, 2009 -- Early Metacritic Returns: New Super Mario [...]

  • Jonathan  

    The PlayStation 3 is an outstanding console. It's great to see more developers making solid AAA titles for the platform.

  • daniel  

    I think ps3 is the best of the video games

  • Hawk  

    There's no winner because games are basically all across platform theses days. So in the end it's all a wash. I never understood why console owners feel the need to argue that their console is better than the others. There's so many different factors at play that it's just personal preference in the end.

  • Ricardo  

    My problem with all of this is the number of bad games on a system isn't really important at all, most people don't bother to play them, only the good games are important and then raw totals are more important than percentages; its not people buy and are forced to play random games.

  • [Metacritic] The Bes  

    [...] by meta score. Some very interesting results for those interested. Look for where the PC ranks. Sauce [...]

  • Metacritic Announces  

    [...] more info head over to Metacritic.com and check out their page on it. Filed Under: News, Nintendo, PC, Playstation, XboxTagged: [...]

What Our Users Are Talking About

  1. /feature/predict-the-summer-movie-metascores-2014 Image
    Predict the Metascores for Summer's Biggest Movies
    April 16, 2014 - 3 comments
    1. jrs71991 : Two Michael Bay films? Well that obviously will get a score lower than 40. Read »
    2. GuillermoBosque : Godzilla and Maleficent will be great! where's Into the Storm? Read »
    3. LamontRaymond : Love that you put the trailers right there - I hadn't heard of several of these. Read »
  2. /feature/movie-trailers-and-news-for-week-ending-april-11-2014 Image
    Film Friday (4/11): This Week's New Trailers + News
    April 11, 2014 - 4 comments
    1. TheQuietGamer : 22 Jump Street and Neighbors still look absolutely hilarious. Definitely my most anticipated movies of the year. Read »
    2. Will : "It began with Twilight..." Don't forget Harry Potter. Read »
    3. Will : "Spoiler Alert! If you don’t want to know what happens to Juliette Binoche...." Yeah, great spoiler alert, Metacritic. Read »
    4. silasbodnick : There is just something about the sound effects in the new Godzilla trailer that make me really want to see that... Read »
  3. /feature/25-best-ps4-games Image
    Quarterly Report: The 25 Best PlayStation 4 Games
    March 24, 2014 - 3 comments
    1. lemminguk : Glad to see the a lot of PS+ games high up. Couldn't understand all the complaints about them (especially don't... Read »
  4. /feature/dvd-release-calendar-april-2014 Image
    DVD Release Calendar: April 2014
    March 27, 2014 - 1 comment
    1. silasbodnick : Ride along is much funnier than the critics gave it credit. Definitely take a chance on it if you are up for a little... Read »
  5. /feature/breaking-bad-episode-514-ozymandias-reviews Image
    Episode Review: Breaking Bad, "Ozymandias"
    September 15, 2013 - 15 comments
    1. dgroberts27 : Look at the one critic review that wasn't "extremely positive" and see what it says. "Last night's 'Ozymandias'... Read »