Before we knew it, December was upon us and all the games had arrived in stores in time for everyone to buy them as presents. We've got the reveal of our Game of the Year coming after Christmas, but for 24 days starting December 1 we'll bring you a new contender for the title. Please note that these games are in no particular order, but feel free to speculate on where they might appear in our final list.
Matthew Nellis, Video Producer
There's something to be said for a shorter, more focused single player campaign in a game and that's exactly what I got out of Dishonored.
Dishonored is a bit like an old friend who pops round unexpectedly for a cup of tea. You're delighted to see them, and you have a great time together because they remind you of the good old days. They also know when it's time to go, making the visit seem all the more special. But this just makes you want to hang out with them again and instead of just having tea at your place, maybe go for a coffee in town.
What I'm trying to say with this weird analogy is that Dishonored is good. A strong single player experience that doesn't overstay its welcome, no multiplayer obviously tacked on to tick a box, and enough variation in the mechanics to warrant another playthrough. I'm certainly looking forward to what Arkane Studios has up their sleeves next.
Martin Gaston, Reviews Editor
Despite what they might write here, nobody else at VideoGamer really likes Dishonored. I'll tell you why: they're all crap at stealth games, and (unless you're playing on PC, oddly) Dishonored is a bit crap if you're playing it as anything other than a stealth game. Yes, like Deus Ex: Human Revolution last year, Dishonored is a game that offers you multiple ways to play but only really excels in one: stealth.
Still, once you get going it's really beautiful. The pastel world of Dunwall is particularly engaging, and the sights, sounds and bleak notes really help create a sense of place and location. I've played a lot of games this year, but I feel like I've actually (though not actually) visited the (fictional) world Arkane Studios created.
Tom Orry, Editor
Dishonored isn't for me. I think I must have played my "enjoy a game you don't normally enjoy" card when I somehow enjoyed XCOM, so the stealthy action here just doesn't gel with me at all. I tried to play it the "way it's meant to be played", skulking about, but I'd get spotted, run up to someone and stab them, and then go on my merry way, repeating the same actions the next time a guard was around. I've seen people play it properly, and the game looks all the better for it, but I'm just not cut out to play games in that way.
Neon Kelly, Video Production Editor
As critics and customers lament alike, new ideas are all too rare these days. With Dishonored, Arkane Studios and Bethesda took a number of gambles, and I'm awfully glad they did. I know that some people find it a tad unforgiving, but that's a deliberate styling – part of their efforts to recall the golden age of PC gaming. That they were so successful in doing this is cause for genuine celebration, as is the fact that the game found an enthusiastic audience. Plus it provided an excuse for me to piss about with a lamb's heart, which made for a fun morning.