All the big guns have come and gone. The best games are all now on shelves and we’ve just decided on our game of the year. Now we’re taking a look at our 10 favourite gaming moments of 2010. Be aware that these are just my subjective choices – feel free to let us know some of your favourites in the comments below.
Finishing Super Meat Boy
It’s a bit of an old cliche to claim you played a game for so long you got blisters on your thumb. The kind of cliche that isn’t really physically possible. You can’t drink like a fish, or be as drunk as a skunk – and you can’t go up shit creek without a paddle.
Well, I can’t honestly say that I had blisters on my thumbs from playing Super Meat Boy, but I can promise you one thing – when I finished the last level of that game, my hands hurt. They actually, properly hurt. They were really sore.
My eyes weren’t in the best of nick either. They had been rigidly fixed upon one point for two hours straight and my sockets had started to throb.
But it was my brain that had taken the most punishment. Super Meat Boy had devolved billions upon billions of intricate synapse connections into a flabby, useless lump of flesh. I stared at the screen as the credits rolled. Exhausted.
Because Super Meat Boy isn’t just a game – it’s more like… exercise. You plough through levels via the raw power of repetition, and succeed only through the dull, lifeless process of muscle memory accumulation. If Super Meat Boy was a movie it would be a 90 minute montage. Every shot showing a tiny improvement. To show it all would take too long.
That’s the beauty of Super Meat Boy. It makes the impossible possible. It makes you feel superhuman. When you start a particularly tough level you almost guffaw out loud at just how preposterous the whole scenario is. There’s no way this is possible you’ll think to yourself, your laugh the perfect representation of your pathetic desperation. But then slowly but surely you eke your way through the level. You die – countless times – but you persevere. Eventually the early sections become so easy you could sleepwalk through them. You get to the last section and, after a few brief sections of genius dexterity, you get through to the end.
And it’s the best feeling in the world.
Super Meat Boy has the potential to make you feel like you’ve evolved as a human being.
I had just finished this beastly game. I was in pain. I continued to sit, the grip on my controller vice-like – my brain pulsing like a migraine.
I had become a god.