What we’re playing: Best Games of the Last 10 Years Edition


This edition of ‘What We’re Playing’ comes a little late, as I posed a trickier question: name your favorite games of the decade, while keeping the list to five games. Not an easy feat (Nick tried and claimed it was too challenging), but the majority of folks were able to whittle it down to exactly five games.

Aside from getting some pretty great lists, there was also some debate on how what constitutes a decade. Like other sites, my definition of the decade was 2000-2009. For others, it appears the decade is 2001-2010 or even 2000-2010. To make everyone happy, we’ll just call this list our Favorite Games of the Last 10 Years (2000-2009).

With folks working on games like Morrowind, DOOM 3, Oblivion, and Fallout 3, it’s no surprise that these games came up on several lists — but in the end, Half-Life 2 and Shadow of the Colossus were the most popular picks. Other favorites included World of Warcraft, Rock Band, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, and the Grand Theft Auto games.

Read the full list below, and then let us know your favorites. And let us know what decade we’re in.

Ryan Ashford: You do know that 2010 is still part of the current decade right (2001-2010)? Anyway, here’s my submission (not counting 2000 releases): Team Fortress 2 (with Half-Life 2 trailing close behind), Demon’s Souls, Shadow Of The Colossus, Katamari Damacy, and Morrowind.

Jennifer Noland: Okami, Bioshock, World of Goo, Shadow of the Colossus, and The Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition

Sam Bernstein: Listed by release date; Halo, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, Mario Kart: Double Dash!!, Dead Space, and Fallout 3.

Brent Krische: Some of these games are obvious choices, others not so much, but I feel that all of them have become synonymous with their respective platform. flower (PS3), Gears of War (Xbox 360), Jet Set Radio Future/Phantom Dust (Xbox), Kingdom Hearts (PS2), and Conker’s Bad Fur Day (N64). And on the subject of platforms, the original Xbox console is my choice for platform of the decade (2000 – 2010).

Andrew Chang: Jet Set Radio, World of Warcraft, Katamari Damacy, Guitar Hero, and Metal Gear Solid 4.

Pete Hines: In no particular order, and I’m doing seven since two are Bethesda titles: World of Warcraft, Oblivion, Uncharted 2, Fallout 3, Half-Life 2, Company of Heroes, Modern Warfare 1/2 (1 for single, 2 for multiplayer).

Matt Ponton: (1) Dead or Alive 3 (JPN), (2) Shadows of the Colossus, (3) Batman: Arkham Asylum, (4) Halo, and (5) Grand Theft Auto: Vice City

Rob Bartholomew: Given that I sat down and looked at my played time in WoW and discovered that out of the last five years I have spent one of them actively in Azeroth, I guess that has to be number one by default… and I think everything else has to be included simply because of the sheer amount of time I’ve spent on them makes them my most significant experiences: World of Warcraft, GTA III: Vice City, Final Fantasy VIII (ok that’s 10 years and 3 months old, but I didn’t play it till 2000!), Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind and Deus Ex. If I had a bonus extra, it’d be Bungie’s Oni.

Daniel Lee: Resident Evil 4, Eternal Darkness, Persona 3: FES, Chromehounds, and Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II.

Jonah Lobe: Team Fortress 2, Baldur’s Gate 2, Counterstrike, Planetside, and Diablo 2.

Peter Sokal: Shadows of the Colossus, DOOM 3, Warhammer 40K: Dawn of War, Half-Life 2, and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic.

Daryl Brigner: Wow, hard decision to make. The more I think about it the more I’d change it up, lol. This is the current top 5: Uncharted 2, Portal, Shadow of the Colossus, Mount & Blade, and Freedom Fighters.

Bruce Nesmith: Company of Heroes, Assassins Creed 2, Half-Life 2, Portal, and Oblivion.

Devin Winters: 1) Assassins Creed 2, 2) Batman: Arkham Asylum, 3) COD 4: Modern Warefare, 4) BioShock, and 5) GTA IV.

Matt Weil: Half-Life 2, Rock Band, Diablo 2, Battlefield 2, and Vampire: Bloodlines.

Dave Ratti: Warcraft III, Half-Life 2, Shadow of the Colossus, Bioshock, and Super Street Fighter II HD Remix.

Gary Powell: World Of Warcraft, Lost Odyssey, GTA: San Andreas (WARM IT UP CJ!), Soul Calibur 3, and Half-Life 2. The Dynasty Warriors series has also provided me with weeks of fun. Crushing armies of soldiers/ mobile suits never gets old for me. I’m really looking forward to the Fist of the North Star Musou game.

Dennis Mejilones: 1) Little Big Planet ( I don’t know, something about being able to build robots and having them battle to the death in this game is incredibly awesome. Not to mention just building your own content in general.), 2) Uncharted 2, 3) Resident Evil 4, 4) Fallout 3, and 5) GTA III (don’t know if it counts, it was released in October 2001).

Michael Lattanzia: Monster Hunter, Diablo 2, Civilization 4, Asheron’s Call, and Rock Band.

Shannon Bailey: (in no particular order) Persona 3, Valkyria Chronicles, Rock Band 2, Super Mario Galaxy, and Fallout 3.

Ashley Cheng: NCAA Football 2005 (match up stick!), GTA4 (hearts NYC), Prince of Persia: Sands of Time (one of greatest endings), Knights of the Old Republic, and NBA Street, Vol. 2.

Sean Palomino: The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, Gears of War, Mario Kart Double Dash!!, Marvel Vs. Capcom 2 (Dreamcast 2000), and Return to Castle Wolfenstein.

Greg Ruddick: Oblivion, Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory, BioShock, Grand Theft Auto IV, and Half-Life 2.

Joseph Mueller: Tough, tough decision! However to help myself I went with the games that I had played more than 75 hours on (don’t know how great that is to admit… ). Top 5: FFVII Crisis Core, Kingdom Hearts 2, Halo 3, Perfect Dark, and Super Mario Galaxy.

Ryan Salvatore: Shadow of the Colossus, Portal, Disgaea, Team Fortress 2, and World of Warcraft (near-miss: GTA: Vice City)

Michael Wagner: Half Life 2, Halo, Guitar Hero, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, and World of Warcraft.

John Pisano, QA: Deus Ex, Morrowind, Knights of the Old Republic, Arcanum, and Rock Band.

Matthew Dickenson: Halo 2, Gears of War, Warcraft III, Diablo II, and Oblivion.

Ryan Lea: The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker, Uncharted 2, Dead Space, Super Smash Bros. Melee, and Thief: Deadly Shadows.

Matt Killmon: ICO, Shadow of the Colossus, Half Life 2, Fallout 3, and Rez.

Jason Bergman: The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, Sid Meier’s Civilization IV, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, GTA: Vice City, and Half-Life 2

Louis Riley: BioShock, Deus Ex, Team Fortress 2, Oblivion, and Shadow of the Colossus

Craig Lafferty: SSX, Call of Duty, BioShock, Uncharted, and Halo.

Shane Liesegang, Designer: Sly Cooper 2, Rez, Portal, Team Fortress 2, and Hungry Hungry Hippos.

Jon DeVriendt: Half-Life 2, Company of Heroes, World of Warcraft, Diablo II, and… StarCraft II?

Cory Dornbusch: Company of Heroes, Half Life 2, Team Fortress 2, Psychonauts, and Shadow of the Colossus.

Jeff Senita: Warcraft 3, Worms: Armageddon, Doom 3, God of War, and Left4Dead.

Aaron Mitschelen: Disgaea 1, Disgaea 2, Disgaea 3, Persona 3, and Ar Tonelico 1.

Matt Grandstaff: SSX , Lumines, Fallout 3, Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved, and Halo.

Reader Comments

  1. 1. Counter Strike Source
    2. S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat
    3. Mirrors Edge
    4. Pikmin 2
    5. Guitar hero 3
    My list certainly wont appeal to everyone, but since when have lists ever appealed to more than 1 person?

  2. 1. CoD: MW – got me to switch from PC to console gaming
    2. Fallout 3 – Showed me that Bethesda was an amazing company
    3. Oblivion – Opened my eyes to RPGs
    4. Left4Dead
    5. NHLxx – I’ve always loved EA’s NHL series!

  3. My top 10

    1- Oblivion – I love playing and modding this game
    2- Morrowind – ruined me for turn based and point and click rpgs forever.
    3- Fallout 3 – My very first pre-ordered game- 300 hours of this murdered my video card – but totally worth it.
    4- GTA-San Andreas – my next to last console game
    5- Arx Fatalis – got me hooked on FPP
    6- KOTOR 2 – Only got 70 hours out of it but I just love SW and unlike many others i liked it better than the first.
    7- Conflict: Desert Storm – An Xbox, 3 friends and a big screen tv = a lot of fun. Best 4 player split screen co-op ever.
    8- Dungeon Siege – The very last point and click game I played and enjoyed, tried the Witcher and hated it.
    9- Final Fantasy IX – The very last turn based game that I played and enjoyed.
    10- Midnight Club 3: DUB Edition Remix – my very last console game.

  4. I would say we’re in a new dacade. After all 2010 has a zero at the end of it :>

    As for *cough* *cough* top five games of the decade for me would be:

    1. Tes Daggerfall
    2. Might And Magic 7
    3. Blood
    4. Warhammer 40k Dawn Of War
    5. Half Life 1+2- such a perfect sequel continuation it feels like one game one world.

    Of course theres many many more top games but i could only mention five boo hoo… i am sad now like Mojo Jojo.

  5. 1. Halo 2, such great memories.
    2. SW:KOTOR, not sure how many times I replayed it.
    3. Morrowind & Oblivion: an awesome set of games
    4. Mass Effect, as soon as I saw the screenshots, I had to get it
    5. Super Smash Bros. Melee, I used to play it every weekend with my friends.

  6. Mostly single-player games:

    Diablo 2 (for multiplayer mostly)
    Sacred/Underworld (single and multiplayer; just started a new game)
    Fallout 3
    Mass Effect 1 and 2

    All for the PC, although that might change since we got a PS3 today…

  7. Well… XX Century is 1900-1999. Since everybody is OK with that, I guess that 201st Decade, was 2000-2009, right?
    (In no particular order)
    World of Warcraft
    Medal of Honor: Allied Assault
    GTA: Vice City
    Heroes of Might and Magic III (June 1st, 1999, but we all played it troughout this decade)

  8. Top 5 for 2000-2009:

    Kotor 1 & 2
    Thief: DP
    ME 1 (2 was too short!!!)

    I do play online games… and I guess my favorite online game of 2000-2009 would either be LOTRO or SWG (pre-NGE)…. but def. not WoW… too cheesy & repetitive (sorry guys)

    Most anticipated game: SW:tOR

  9. Since everyone is doing it…
    1.Fallout 3
    2.Cod 4
    3.Gta San Andreas
    5.Fallout: Tactics
    6.Halo: Combat Evolved
    7.Cod:Modern Warfare 2
    8.Pokemon Crystal
    10.GTA Vice City Stories for the psp
    Good games all.

  10. My list of the decade (all PC):

    1- Max Payne 1
    2- Call of Duty 1 (+ U.O.)
    3- Half Life 2 (+ EPs)
    4- TES IV Oblivion
    5- Fallout 3
    6- Portal
    7- Mafia
    8- GTA Vice City
    9- Splinter Cell
    10- Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay

    Many others would be right next… Battlefield 1942, Silent Hunter III, Mass Effect 2, Prey, L4D,…

  11. I’d just like to say that to everyone from Beth who put Morrowind on their list: You are now my favourite devs EVAR!
    Seriously guys, there’s no reason to not put your own work there.
    No amount of modesty should stop you from saying that you believe your games are as good as we know they are.

    Here’s to another 10 years of BGS.

    And just a quick list of games from me
    RPGs – ES:III, ES:IV and F3. Also Deus Ex, Mass Effect and Fable I.
    Action/Adventure – Every Zelda, Metroid Prime or Metroid handheld. Assassin’s Creed 1 (haven’t done 2 yet), Saboteur, Prince of Persia trilogy, Splinter Cell 1-3, Red Faction: Guerrilla.
    FPS – Crysis, Crysis Warhead, Far Cry, Borderlands, Halo.
    Special Mentions – Audiosurf, Mirror’s Edge

  12. Fallout 3, Morrowind, Thief 2, Oblivion … and, ya know, having now played Mass Effect on the PC (on which it handles better), that’s my new number 5. I guess I really need to finish Half-Life 2 and KOTOR – though from what I’ve played, Dragon Age is actually better than KOTOR.

  13. Don’t even know where to begin with this lol. I guess some of my all time favorites (many aren’t the decade of topic) would have to be Half-Life 1+2, Medal of Honor; it set the bar for military shooters, and was one of the first to popularize the genre. Far Cry for having blended open world and FPS. Final Fantasy VII for having been such a great RPG. Morrowind for having turned me onto the open world genre. GTA IV for having made a really immersive world, with countless random and unique events. Well….I can’t think of anything else haha