Written by Heat55Wade
As a new generation in gaming is born later this year, it’s time to look back on the best that the PS3 had to offer. From innovating gameplay to immersive worlds and memorable stories, certain games surpassed mere greatness and deserve to be categorized as the best of this generation. Here are the games that accomplished this.
With the release of Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune in 2007, a new face of the PlayStation brand was born. From the first game to the outstanding sequels, Among Thieves and Drake’s Deception, developer Naughty Dog gave the PS3 a third-person adventure far from the average shooter. What makes the Uncharted franchise so great is its ability to blend refreshing third-person gameplay with captivating narratives and characters. Not only is the game series able to make a seemingly indestructible treasure hunter, protagonist Nathan Drake, so humanly relatable, but it creates realistic relationships between all the characters that places a strong emphasis on storytelling. Altogether, the refined platforming, evolving combat, and memorable characters serve to make the Uncharted franchise one of PlayStation’s best this generation.
Developed by Quantic Dream studios, Heavy Rain introduced this generation to its self-proclaimed style of “interactive drama.” When main character Ethan Mars has his whole world turned upside down, the story sets out on a fast-paced path that connects multiple characters, from troubled detectives to insomniac journalists. This adventure game progresses in its story as if it were a cinematic serial drama, but it gives the player power over how it all unfolds. The game centers on this concept of choice from the very beginning. As time passes, the decisions to be made become increasingly more intense, and the raw emotion of the plot immerses you in the brilliant atmosphere of the game’s unnamed city. Ethan Mars crosses paths with several important strangers on his quest to find his kidnapped son, and it is up to the player to decide how such a brilliant game will turn out.
Released in 2008, Mirror’s Edge showed the world just how outstanding a first-person game can be when the focus isn’t on repetitive shooting. As female free-runner Faith, your daily rooftop deliveries in a strange, dystopian city go sour fast when your sister is framed for murder. Faith goes on a mission to liberate her sister from custody in this city of political corruption, and it is simply astounding. The game so greatly innovates with fluid free running and parkour gameplay. Throughout the missions, you will often be chased by the city’s corrupted law enforcement. Mirror’s Edge uses this escape-focused style so well that you may genuinely fear being captured here more than you would playing a common horror game. This sense of immersion and the resulting adrenaline helps to develop even further the tremendous atmosphere of the game already instilled by the visual style and ambience. Mirror’s Edge‘s innovative gameplay and captivating world altogether serve to make it one of the best and most memorable games of this generation.
The Walking Dead: The Game
While so many are now familiar with the great The Walking Dead franchise because of the TV show, Telltale Games decided to take their episodic adventure game back to the comic book world. While some characters from the comic make short cameos, almost all of the characters in The Walking Dead: The Game are new. The game’s protagonist, Lee Everett, is tasked early on with taking care of a little girl who’s separated from her parents at the start of the viral zombie outbreak. In protecting this girl, Clementine, from an increasingly dangerous world, Lee overcomes his troubled past. He and Clementine set out on an incredibly emotional adventure, meeting new people and seeing just how deadly the world is. Overall, story is the key component of this game. Throughout all the episodes, the player must decide how to approach certain situations, whether it be how to gather supplies or who to save in a life-or-death crisis. As the choices escalate in impact, they carry different consequences and a greater emotional weight in this story that simply must be played to understand. The Walking Dead: The Game definitively defies the expectations of a game based on popular media and creates an enthralling experience worthy of best-of-this-generation status.
Consisting of two main games, Valve’s first-person Portal franchise is a great reminder of how video games can thrive off of good wholesome fun. As female test subject Chell, you are prompted by a cheeky AI named GLaDOS to complete a series of puzzles in the mysterious Aperture Laboratories. The puzzles make use of the intriguing “portal gun” and become increasingly challenging as the games progress. Every challenge aims to test your wits and ultimately leaves you satisfied upon completing them. While the intelligent gameplay design is very rewarding, the focus on atmosphere is extremely apparent as well. From hilarious voice acting to humorous character designs, the game series consistently enhances the mystery of the environment. In addition, the graphical style of the game franchise is well-polished and always visually appealing. In the end, both Portal and Portal 2 will be remembered from this generation as tremendous blends of pure comedy, memorable characters, and challenging and refreshing gameplay.
Developed by Arkane Studios, Dishonored stands one of the definitive action-adventure games of this generation. In this first-person game, the user plays as Corvo Attano, the bodyguard of Dunwall city’s Empress. Upon returning to Dunwall after a voyage to investigate the region’s rat plague, Corvo is framed for the murder of the Empress and kidnapping of the Empress’s daughter, Emily. He escapes capture and sets out on a mission to rescue Emily and neutralize the corrupt government officials responsible for the crimes. On his journey in this unique and artistically crafted city, Corvo attains many powers and weapons. It is up to the player how to utilize these amenities. The game makes effective use of a choice-based stealth system where the player can choose to hide in the shadows or wreak havoc on his enemies. You can complete the game without killing anyone or you can leave a trail of bodies behind you. The “Low Chaos” or “High Chaos” statuses for the various missions you complete add up in the end to determine how Corvo’s tale concludes. In one of this generation’s best games, it’s up to the player to decide whether Corvo liberates Dunwall from corruption or falls victim to his own revenge.
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
Based in one of the most vibrant open-world environments this generation, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim stands as a truly incredible action role-playing experience. As a legendary Dragonborn, one with the body of a mortal and the soul of a dragon, the player is tasked with going on a journey to destroy a dragon prophesied to destroy the world. How players approaches this great journey is all up to them. Customization is key in Skyrim as the player must choose his/her character’s race, combat style, and what path to take in completing the quest. While some may take a quick path to the end of the main story arc, others may delve into the many side-quests offered throughout the land’s many cities and locations. The incredibly detailed scenery of the land of Skyrim is further enhanced by the amount of interaction with the region’s many diverse inhabitants, both friendly and evil. Whether you’re helping a civilian or battling a dragon, Skyrim provides endless content in a game that let’s the player choose how to experience it. The captivating graphics, detailed customization, and tremendous open-world freedom all make The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim on of the best games on the PS3.
Through strong emphases on storytelling, immersion, and/or gameplay, these games stand out as the best of the PlayStation 3 generation. Got comments about the article? Sound off in the comments section below.