Eurogamer has posted a Developers’ Games of 2011 feature, asking notables such as Ken Levine, Peter Molyneux, and David Jaffe what made the biggest impression on them during the year.
Dylan Cuthbert, founder of PixelJunk studio Q-Games, picked Dark Souls, stating that after the first two hours of “utter, utter shit” the game opened up “into the most amazing and fulfilling and sheer scarily tense game I have ever played.” Brad Muir, lead development of Iron Brigade at Double Fine agreed, calling it his “runaway game of the year. No question.”
Lionhead founder Peter Molyneux picked Minecraft as his game of the year, as did Ultima creator Richard Garriott. Molyneux felt the game was a bit “rough and ready” at the start of 2011, but contained “a purity which showed amazing potential,” and by the end of the year took fans which participated in its creation “on a development journey.”
Epic’s Lee Perry, lead designer on Gears 3, chose The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, as did Irrational Game’s Ken Levine.
“Favourite game of 2011? Going to have to go with Skyrim on that,” said Perry. “I know it sounds like ‘going with the masses’, but sometimes the masses get it right. That game is amazing, several co-workers are actually injured from so many prolonged days sitting there playing it and digging through the inch-thick strategy guide. Just try and go 20 minutes around another gamer without a Skyrim discussion coming up, it’s impossible.”
Levine said the game has “really taken over my life” and called it “an incredible achievement in world creation and an inspiring product with an insanely awesome amount of content that feels terrific.”
Eat, Sleep, Play’s David Jaffe had a bit of a tough time deciding which game he liked best, citing Rayman Origins, Batman: Arkham City, Skyrim and Jetpack Joyride for iPhone as the games he enjoyed most during 2011. However, he ending up choosing Batman: Arkham City due to it being just “sandbox enough” that he felt immersed and just lead and constructed “enough that I still feel like I’m being taken by the hand and being shown something cool frequently enough that I don’t end up getting lost.”
“With Batman, I thought for the first time in recent years it actually had a direction or a voice that really was equivalent to the Christopher Nolan films or some of the best Batman comic writers,” said Jaffe. “It really did add to the canon and had an understanding and its own spin on the Batman mythos, which I thought was a great wrapper around the brilliant gameplay structure.
“It was firing on all cylinders, on all levels.”
Other games of the year for developers were Resident Evil 4 HD, Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together, The Witcher 2, Battlefield 3, Portal 2 , and The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword.