Let’s get this depressing topic out of the way. Without further ado, my top 5 (gaming related) disappointments for 2008:
5: XBox 360 #2 rolled over and died on me. I’m on my 3rd 360 now, but that’s not so bad since I have friends who are on #5. #3 is thus far stable but I still feel a bit of anxiety every time I turn the machine on.
4: MMO closings and the loss of Mythos. Flagship Studios’ implosion was a big disappointment, not because of the end of Hellgate London, but because we lost Mythos, which was an *awesome* MMO/Diablo hybrid. I played in the beta and it was solid and so much fun. In fact I enjoyed it so much that I held-off on playing it waiting for “release” so I wouldn’t get burned out and then… *poof!*. Such a loss. Later in the year we learned that Tabula Rasa is being shut down. I liked TR when I first tired it, and my intent was always to get back to the game once it’d cooked for a while, but alas, that won’t happen now. The lesson I’ve learned? Play ’em while you got ’em since I don’t think we’ve seen the end of MMO closings.
3: Spore. I had wild hopes for this game; probably too wild. I really was hoping for an Evolution simulator and instead I got an Intelligent Design simulator, which wouldn’t have been so bad if the game had a bit more meat to it. It was an awful lot of fun for about 3 nights and I’ve barely touched it since.
2: Pirates of the Burning Seas was in development *forever* and still shipped half-finished. I adored the mechanics of the ship combat, but the economy stuff was way too spread-sheet heavy for me, and the PvP was a bit too hard-core for my tastes at launch. You’d haggle and finagle for a couple weeks to get a ship built and could lose it in an evening of PvP. This aspect was loved by some, but not by me. The ‘swashbuckling’ was broken, and cookie cutter towns and adventure areas removed any sense of exploration. Still looking for a good Wooden Ships-theme MMO.
1: Age of Conan. So much hype, but I should’ve been warned off by the fact that the devs kept trying to draw our attention back to the topless women. The revolutionary combat system wasn’t revolutionary at all (City of Heroes did it better). All that said, the first 20 levels were pretty darned fun, but after that the game was kind of grindy and catered far too heavily to zerg-guilds for my tastes.
So what were your biggest gaming disappointments this year?