Having “The Favorite Game”

An oddly hard question for me to answer is “What is your favorite movie/book/tv-show/game?” I always end up making a small list of several different options, but I can never seem to find a final, satisfactory answer.

I would say that may favorite game (or at least one of them) is Obsidian Entertainment’s Fallout New Vegas. New Vegas is the fourth game of the Fallout series, set in a post-apocalyptic Las Vegas. I thoroughly enjoy the setting of the game, and New Vegas places no limits on player exploration: factions, bandits, and scavengers populate this harsh world and can directly interact with the player, responding to the player’s decisions. Actions carry consequences, and helping one group could very well be cause for retaliation from another. Between factions from a rebuilt California and a growing empire based on ancient Rome coming from Arizona, the “Mojave Wasteland” is caught in a turbulent power struggle. The themes and plot of the game focus on Hoover Dam, and the importance of reliable water and electricity in the post apocalypse.

Many interiors in New Vegas showcase the rather bleak setting of the game.
Many interiors in New Vegas showcase the rather bleak setting of the post apocalypse.

The game offers a “Hardcore Mode” as well, which is an optional setting that requires the player to eat, drink, and sleep at regular intervals. For lack of a better term, the game is incredibly immersive. Design choices such as adding sources of food and water in settlements give the game world detail that makes it feel more realistic and “alive”. The game also takes elements of the western genre, sci-fi retro-futuristic imagery, and Cold War era American exceptionalism, which all work to add a fresh twist to the apocalyptic setting.

The Las Vegas sign, , a relic of the "Old World" surrounded by ruin.
The Las Vegas sign, a relic of the “Old World,” surrounded by ruin.

I’ve always been a fan of games like New Vegas or Skyrim, which focus on world building and settings. I make a character and I dive in, exploring the nooks and crannies of the game’s world. I’ve found that New Vegas is especially accommodating for my interests in gaming.

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I want to turn things to the comments and let readers discuss their favorite games. What makes a game “your favorite,” and why?

5 thoughts on “Having “The Favorite Game”

  1. I agree with you in the difficulty of pinpointing a favorite game. I can barely pinpoint a favorite genre, let alone a favorite game. It’s all dependent on mood. I can however, tell you that a game that I thoroughly enjoyed and just recently played through. If you haven’t already and you don’t hate GBA games, I suggest giving kirby and the amazing mirrors a try on an emulator. It’s your traditional kirby game with a little spin because each portal has multiple paths. Kirby is trying to recover all the parts spread all throughout the map to a broken magical mirror. Because it’s on an emulator it’s totally free and while it can be frustrating at times (so many times I had to start over because of a missed opportunity to take a particular path), the fun to frustration ratio makes it totally worth it.

  2. I think an online competitive component is something my favorite game has to have. I loved Dark Souls for this reason, and while I loved Skyrim and all of Bethesda’s RPGs, it always bugs me to know that there is a definitive end for each game because I get bored of exploring. When I play other people online, like in MMOs, stomping people never gets old.

    1. I think those games are great, but yeah, Dark Souls is totally a different beast than Skyrim. By the competitive component, did you mean the ability to invade other’s games? That’s definitely a unique thing Dark Souls had, and it kept you on your toes somehow even more than the game’s already tricky enemies.

  3. “The Last of Us” is my favorite game by a long shot. Superb story, great gameplay, and beautiful graphics is everything I want from a Triple A release. The narrative has a cinematic level of detail and polish, while the characters remain the most complex and well developed I’ve seen in a game to date.

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