My God. It has been a busy, busy few weeks. Here’s the thing, chaps: I had been planning to write a post about my top ten video games of the last decade, but I didn’t comfortable doing so until I had played every single video game from that period. So for the last two months, I have sat down and played – to completion – every single PlayStation, PS2, PS3, Xbox, Xbox 360, PC, PSP, Wii, N64, GameCube and GBA game released since 2001. It was a massive task, but someone had to do it.
When you read the following, my ultimate top ten videogames of the last decade, I’m sure you’ll agree it was worth the bedsores, lost family time and thirty pounds of gained weight. Here’s the list:
10: Parkour Sniper (PS2)
A surprise hit amongst older people and the French, Parkour Sniper was released in 2005. The game is viewed from a first person perspective, and your task is to take out the agile young people jumping around the city landscape using a special light gun. A lot of satisfaction can be derived from waiting until they have made their way to the top of a tall building and offing them, watching their lifeless body bounce off the railings and flagpoles below.
9: School Dance Revolution (Arcade, PS2)
The best of the dancing games came as a surprise to most. What nostalgic fun this was! As a (computer generated) inept DJ span terrible music, the aim of the game was to stand at the side of your room for as long as possible. Later levels included awkward shuffling, surreptitious alcohol smuggling and teacher avoidance. The two player game, in which you had to be rejected by the other gamer in as cringeworthy a fashion as possible, was an added bonus.
8: Grand Theft Auto: Headbutting Authority Figures (PS3, Xbox, PC)
Finally, a GTA worth playing! None of that rubbish carjacking or drug dealing, just finding authority figure after authority figure and giving them the old ‘Glasgow Kiss’. Fun for all the family!
7: Movie Tie-In: The Video Game (PS, PC, Atari Lynx)
This sprawling RPG saw you take control of a video game designer given the task of adapting a new movie for the console market. With different playable characters, an excellent fight system for beating up annoying middle management types and levels of difficulty depending on the film being adapted (from ‘action/adventure’ to ‘period drama’), this game stood out in a time when RPGs were shite.
6: Nomihodai no Umeboshi (PSP)
Available only in Japan, this tragically overlooked game makes the list to show how amazing and extensive my knowledge of video games is.
5: Cowbell Hero (PS2, Xbox)
Who needs guitars? Nobody, when you have cowbells! Altogether now, “We need an increase in cowbell! I have an illness and the only thing that can cure it is an increase in cowbell!”
4: Jetpony II: Stumplegs (Every muthafarkin’ system)
The sequel to the popular platform shooter begins when Jetpony wakes up after a night on the town to find that his legs have been removed. Luckily, he still has his jets, and everyone’s favourite Shetland Pony goes on a murderous rampage to try and find his missing limbs and the bastards who took them. Quite possibly the goriest game ever made, and all the better for it.
3: World of Carpark (PC)
In 2001, Lizard Games released Carpark, their first garage-based rpg. It was mildly popular. Then, in 2007, they released the follow-up, a massively multiplayer online car park simulator, and the world rejoiced. Who can forget the first time they chose their character and set foot in that fabled land of disabled spaces, angry attendants and harried mothers? Sure, it could be daunting for the newbie, having to deal with older players who had levelled up and can do a three-point-turn on a sixpence, but this was as rewarding as online gaming was ever likely to get.
2: Tiger Woods Pun Simulator (Xbox 360)
Sure, it’s a brand new game, but making ‘Wood’, ‘In the Rough’ and ‘Leg-over par’ references will never get old! This game will run and run and run!
1: Help! I’m Trapped in James Cameron’s Nose! (PS, PS2, PS3, PS4, Atari 2600)
The best game of the last ten years, bar none. What more can be said? There is more playability, replayability, satisfaction and depth of gameplay in this release than every other game made in the last century. Escaping from the famed director’s nose is challenging, yet the difficulty level and enjoyment means you’ll keep trying to find your way out of the conk. My God, I’m going to go back and start it again, I can’t get enough of this game.
So there you have it. The best games of the noughties. But what do I think will be big news in the 2010s? Here are my tips:
Mummies: Zombies and vampires are old news. Egyptian undead sarcophagi-dwellers are going to be huge in the coming years.
Baccarat: Televised baccarat is gaining popularity, so expect to see lots of tie-in games.
Robots made of meat: I don’t know why, but this is my dark horse.
Benjamin Netanyahu: I’ll be honest, I’m out of ideas.