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Game Of The Year Award 2002

Platformers have made their regular appearance, with games such as Super Mario Sunshine and Ratchet & Clank being at the forefront of the genre. Blinx attemped to move the genre forward with its time-stopping ability, but its gameplay was flawed and the replay value wasn’t very good. Platformers never tend to stray off the beaten path, to try new ideas and concepts.

Sport games, as usual are a mixed bag. FIFA have fought back against the might of Pro Evolution Soccer 2 with FIFA 2003, which came as quite a surprise as it was actually a good game this year. The champion of football games still remains as PES 2, though, the most realistic rendition of football available. Tony Hawk made his perennial appearance on every conceivable system, with good graphics and addictive gameplay.

First-Person-Shooter fans have had a great year, with many top-notch titles such as Halo, Ghost Recon and Unreal Championship on Xbox, Medal Of Honor: Frontline and Red Faction II on PS2, Metroid Prime on GameCube and Battlefield 1942, Unreal Tournament 2003 and No One Lives For Ever 2 for PC. Halo was the benchmark title for Xbox, with huge levels, stunning graphics and a excellent plot. GR and UC make excellent use of Microsoft’s Xbox LIVE service, and Ghost Recon features a superb single-player mode. Red Faction has returned with its Geo-Mod technology, allowing the player to demolish the gaming environment. Battlefield 1942 excels as a FPS, offering 64 player online battles on land, in the air and at sea; simultaneously. UT 2003 brought us awesome graphics within the standard, exhilarating UT structure and gameplay.

Sneak-’em-ups (we had to invent a genre, didn’t we?) have been few in number, but “quality, not quantity” is the saying, and this year certainly has lived up to it. Metal Gear Solid 2 on PS2 and Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell on Xbox both offered gorgeous graphics and un-paralleled gameplay.

Third Place goes to…

The author of this fine article

is the Editor at Thunderbolt, having joined in November 2000. Get in touch on Twitter @PhilipMorton.

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