The Best Games of 2009

  • Publish Date: December 9, 2009
  • Comments: ↓ 185 user comments

The best Nintendo DS games of the year

ImageThe top DS game of 2009

Although set in the same Liberty City as Grand Theft Auto IV, Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars is more than just a mere handheld version of the franchise. The year's best-reviewed DS game was hailed by critics for adding new features to the GTA series, and showcasing the capabilities of the Nintendo DS. In fact, it's the best-reviewed DS game in Metacritic's entire database.

The DS also scored with critics for Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story, an RPG using the classic Mario characters, and Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor, a challenging hybrid RPG/strategy game set in a demon-infested Tokyo that's (part of a game series that's hugely popular in Japan).

Nintendo DS Top 20 Best-Reviewed Games, 2009
  Title Genre Metascore Users
1Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown WarsAction, Adventure93 9.0
2Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside StoryAction, RPG919.2
3Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, TheAction, Adventure86n/a
4Might and Magic: Clash of HeroesRPG, Puzzle, Adventure86n/a
5Peggle: Dual ShotPuzzle858.7
This addictive PC game port is one of six puzzlers to land in the DS Top 20
6Shin Megami Tensei: Devil SurvivorRPG, Strategy849.3
7Professor Layton and The Diabolical BoxAdventure849.5
8Dragon Quest V: Hand of the Heavenly BrideRPG848.7
9Art Style: DIGIDRIVEPuzzle83 9.0
10Mighty Flip ChampsAction, Puzzle83 10.0
11Art Style: PiCTOBiTSPuzzle838.8
12Rhythm HeavenRhythm, Music839.5
This generally well-reviewed Japanese import plays like a Wario Ware title
13Dragon Quest WarsStrategy83 9.0
14Pokemon PlatinumRPG838.7
15Space Invaders Extreme 2Shooter82n/a
16Dawn of DiscoveryStrategy, Simulation828.5
17Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Minis March Again!Action, Adventure828.5
18Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling AdventureAdventure, Puzzle829.2
19Bomberman IIAction81 9.0
20Fire Emblem: Shadow DragonStrategy816.5

Games must have at least 5 reviews to qualify for the above list. The productivity title "Flipnote Studio," although highly-ranked, is excluded from the list because it is not a game.

The best PSP games of the year

ImageThe top PSP game of 2009

Although it didn't score quite as high as its DS counterpart, Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars also finished as the best-reviewed game of the year for the Sony PSP. On its heels was PS3 port LittleBigPlanet, which proved as charming on the handheld as it did on the console.

Four role-playing games made the PSP Top 20 list, including Half-Minute Hero, a comedic meta-game that boils genre standards down into a 30-second essence. Gamers looking for a more conventional RPG can turn to Disgaea 2: Dark Hero Days, rated by critics as one of the top strategy-RPG games available on the platform.

PSP Top 20 Best-Reviewed Games, 2009
  Title Genre Metascore Users
1Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown WarsAction, Adventure917.2
2LittleBigPlanetPlatform889.2
3PixelJunk Monsters DeluxeStrategy869.7
4Half-Minute HeroRPG859.5
5TetrisPuzzle859.5
6Blast OffArcade, Puzzle84n/a
7Disgaea 2: Dark Hero DaysStrategy, RPG84 9.0
8FIFA Soccer 10Sports, Soccer838.2
9Tekken 6Fighting, Action828.6
10Resistance: RetributionThird-Person Shooter818.2
11Monster Hunter Freedom UniteAction, RPG819.4
12Patapon 2Action, Music, Platform818.8
13Pinball FantasiesPinball817.3
14FieldrunnersStrategy80 10.0
15BeateratorRhythm, Music809.6
16Soulcalibur: Broken DestinyFighting80 6.0
17Rock Band UnpluggedMusic798.8
18KahootsPuzzle798.5
19Dissidia Final FantasyAction, RPG, Fighting798.2
20EchoesAction79n/a

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

For more information

Which games bombed with critics this year? Find the "Duds of the Year" in Metacritic Games. Our sister site Gamespot names its "Games of the Year" on December 17th.

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Comments (185)

  • You  

    Looking at the comments all the critics of the PS3 (and 360)say basically the same thing. Same for the fans (of both consoles)out there as well. You all just repeat what someone before you wrote.

  • Micheal Parker  

    I thing Vampire Rain: Altered Species it one the the best game of all time

  • kaveen danushka  

    I think modern warfare 2 is the best cuz it gives the player a real experience and how the soldiers suffer in the war

  • PlayStation Around t  

    [...] PlayStation 3 edged out Microsoft’s Xbox 360 to top Metacritic’s first annual Game Platform Powe... [...]

  • OneDimension  

    cms, yes, Uncharted 2 is massively overrated. Apparently it makes you 'feel like your in a Hollywood movie'. If only I was that simple. What gets me though, is, if it was a Hollywood movie is would've probably got mauled.

  • cms  

    Oh and one more thing... can we stop comparing the Wii to the other consoles? They are not the same class of product.

  • cms  

    Drake part 1 was massively overrated (so safe to assume 2 is also), Killzone 2 was massively overrated, many of the games on both consoles run better on the 360 STILL, so I don't see any possible way the PS3 is the top console. 360 still is. I own both, I got a RROD a few months ago, and my opinion is still the same. PS3 for movies, 360 for gaming.

  • callahan09  

    To quote Mare Marie on 12/10/09 at 11:31am:

    "So without Braid which had already been on the 360 for over a year with the same score 360 and PS3 had the same number in the top ten for the year.

    Worth noting."

    So without Batman Arkham Asylum, which is also available on PS3, the 360 loses one of its titles for the year, as well, and then the PS3 is still up a title. (Weird that the 360 version of Batman has the higher meta score considering most critics even said the PS3 version is the one to buy if you had the choice)

  • PS3-RockZ  

    Im glad to see PS3 at the top, I mean it was the only good console for 2009, and for 2010 it shall be even better with games like The Last Guardian, Bioshock 2 and GOW 3 and hopefully Uncharted 3, Wii had a terrible year in 2009 NO DOUBT ABOUT THAT.

  • Austin  

    @Greg:
    And most of the 360s games were also multiplats. Or expansions. Your point?

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