How did we let this one slip by unnoticed?
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.
Martin Gaston, Reviews Editor
Mark of the Ninja is a real class act; a stealth game where the sneaking doesn't plod, the action stays taut and the levels retain a sense of real freedom. Shoved out unceremoniously at the end of summer 2012 - because Microsoft would much rather promote Fable Heroes and Wreckateer, for crying out loud - Mark of the Ninja is a virtually undiscovered treasure which eclipses a good chunk of everything else on the market right now. Klei have always been a developer with an affinity for style, but it's with Mark of the Ninja that the studio finally sinks its teeth into something of real substance too. It's not the longest game, but that doesn't matter - it's an empowering adventure that you're likely to want to play two or three times, and every time you sit down to play you'll have a blast.
Tom Orry, Editor
I was sceptical about Mark of the Ninja. Klei's Shank games left me cold, but Martin insisted Mark of the Ninja was way better than those titles. Annoyingly, he was right. It's sad that I didn't play this earlier in the year, but it completely passed me by. Heck, if Dave doesn't own it (and he owns everything), something must have gone wrong with the promotion. Still, there's no excuse not to buy it now. Or you could wait to see if this stealthy delight appears in one of Microsoft's Xbox LIVE Arcade sales or a Steam sale this Christmas.