5. No More Heroes [Grasshopper Manufacture /// Wii]
We’ve found the Quentin Tarantino of video games and his name is Goichi
Suda, better known as Suda51. His ballsy, irreverent, frequently
challenging Wii masterpiece No More Heroes may be the first game in history to satisfy the video-store junkie and the video-game burnout in equal measure.
4. Braid [Number None Inc. /// Xbox LIVE Arcade, PC]
This time-warping 2D sidescroller uses a gorgeous hand-drawn style, playfully references 8-bit NES classic Super Mario Bros. and contains wistful, impressionistic prose capable of putting a lump in your throat. Best indie game of the year.
3. Fable II [Lionhead Studios /// Xbox 360]
With a staff of more than 70 toiling for four straight years, Peter
Molyneux’s Lionhead Studios has created a game that possesses
unbelievable heart. Albion is a gorgeous, idyllic world where uilleann
pipes moan in the distance at twilight and a beguiling quest awaits.
2. Gears of War 2 [Epic Games /// Xbox 360]
The sequel to 2006’s biggest game draws from the best traits of
big-budget Hollywood action films and sidesteps all the cringe-inducing
lameness. Invite friends over to watch you play. Microwave them popcorn.
1. Fallout 3 [Bethesda Softworks /// Xbox 360, PS3, PC]
Paste’s favorite game of 2008 is a staggering achievement.
Twenty hours into it, you’ll feel like you’ve just started to peel off
the story’s outer layer. Liam Neeson contributes marvelous voice
acting, and every character you encounter in your journeys across the
D.C. wasteland has uniquely personal motivations and emotional depth.
Pitch-black comedy and pointed social commentary only deepen the
experience. Play it before the world ends!