The lights are on
After spending the last month publishing our best-of lists of the last generation, we decided to break down the numbers and see which of the past nine years were the best for gamers, which console had the most exclusive titles appear on our lists, and which publishers delivered the largest amount of great games. Here are our findings.
The Rise and Fall
To gather this data, we created a spreadsheet document with all the games, systems, and years for every game that made one of our overall console best-of lists and the various genre best-of lists (like Best Shooters of the Generation, etc.).
We sorted by year to look at how the best games of this generation were dispersed throughout the years. A couple of things to note: One, obviously 2014 is not over yet, and there could be more games added during the busy holiday season. Two, some games were released for Wii but are not counted on our best-of lists. For example, sports titles that were released for Wii but were not comparable in terms of graphics, features, and online play with the PS3 and Xbox 360 version are excluded for being inferior products.
As you can see by the graph above, the numbers tell a familiar tale – that of a console generation's rise and fall. As you might expect, the generation started out slow, then gathered steam through the middle years, gradually petering out as publishers and developers started planning for new consoles. As it turns out, 2008 through 2010 were the salad days filled with amazing titles like BioShock, Left 4 Dead, Borderlands, and Red Dead Redemption. Below is the complete list of games that made our End of an Era best-of lists, sorted by year. It's a nice walk down memory lane.
2006: Four Games
Burnout Revenge - Xbox 360Rainbow Six Vegas - PS3, Xbox 360The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess - WiiWii Sports - Wii
2007: Nine Games
All Pro Football 2K8 - PS3, Xbox 360Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare - PS3, Xbox 360College Hoops 2K8 - PS3, Xbox 360Halo 3 - Xbox 360Metroid Prime 3: Corruption - WiiPortal - PS3, Xbox 360Super Mario Galaxy - WiiSuper Paper Mario - WiiZack & Wiki: Quest For Barbaros' Treasure - Wii
2008: 14 Games
BioShock - PS3, Xbox 360Burnout Paradise - PS3, Xbox 360Dead Space - PS3, Xbox 360Fallout 3 - PS3, Xbox 360Gears of War 2 - Xbox 360Grid - PS3, Xbox 360Left 4 Dead - Xbox 360Mario Kart Wii - WiiMetal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots - PS3NHL 09 - PS3, Xbox 360Rock Band 2 - PS3, Xbox 360Super Smash Bros. Brawl - WiiValkyria Chronicles - PS3World of Goo - Wii
2009: 13 Games
A Boy and His Blob - WiiBatman: Arkham Asylum - PS3, Xbox 360Boom Blox Bash Party - WiiBorderlands - PS3, Xbox 360Braid - PS3, Xbox 360Dragon Age: Origins - PS3, Xbox 360Excitebots - WiiHouse of the Dead: Overkill - WiiLittle King's Story - WiiMadWorld - WiiNew Super Mario Bros. Wii - WiiPunch-Out!! - WiiUncharted 2: Among Thieves - PS3
2010: 14 Games
Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood - PS3, Xbox 360Battlefield: Bad Company 2 - PS3, Xbox 360Cave Story - WiiDonkey Kong Country Returns - WiiFinal Fantasy XIII - PS3, Xbox 360God of War III - PS3Gran Turismo 5 - PS3Kirby's Epic Yarn - WiiNBA 2K11- PS3, Xbox 360NCAA Football 11 - PS3, Xbox 360Red Dead Redemption - PS3, Xbox 360Sin & Punishment: Star Successor - WiiSuper Mario Galaxy 2 - WiiSuper Meat Boy - Xbox 360
2011: 11 Games
Bulletstorm - PS3, Xbox 360Dirt 3 - PS3, Xbox 360Fight Night Champion - PS3, Xbox 360Forza Motorsport 4 - Xbox 360LittleBigPlanet 2 - PS3Mass Effect 2 - PS3, Xbox 360MLB 11: The Show - PS3Test Drive Unlimited 2 - PS3, Xbox 360The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - PS3, Xbox 360The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword - WiiTiger Woods PGA Tour 12: The Masters - PS3, Xbox 360
2012: 10 Games
Dishonored - PS3, Xbox 360Far Cry 3 - PS3, Xbox 360Journey - PS3Madden NFL 13 - PS3, Xbox 360Rhythm Heaven Fever - WiiSonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed - PS3, Xbox 360The Walking Dead: Season 1 - PS3, Xbox 360The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings Enhanced Edition - Xbox 360XCOM: Enemy Unknown - PS3, Xbox 360Xenoblade Chronicles - Wii
2013: 6 Games
Diablo III - PS3, Xbox 360FIFA 14 - PS3, Xbox 360Grand Theft Auto V - PS3, Xbox 360Need for Speed: Rivals - PS3, Xbox 360The Last of Us - PS3Tomb Raider - PS3, Xbox 360
2014: 1 Game
Dark Souls II - PS3, Xbox 360
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