Looking back at 2009, it was a pretty great year for video game fans. Arguably the largest game of the modern gaming era released, along with several instant classics, all of which are held in high esteem to this day. But what games are the best of the best out of your newly ten year olds?

Honorable Mentions

These games are some of the best. Different factors prevent them from making the cut. From Pokemon Platinum technically releasing in Japan in 2008, despite releasing elsewhere in 2009, to others just not quite making the cut.

10. Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 2

Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 2 made its debut on September 15th, 2009. It was developed by Vicarious Visions and then published by Activision.

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Even though some of the versions of the game were considered rather poor in quality, the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions are held in high regard by fans. The story is kind of a twist on the Civil War comic story line, which sold many fans on the game immediately.

Much like its predecessor, the game takes the style of an isometric dungeon crawler. It allows teams of up to four superheroes from a gallery of options, to fight together throughout the story. One of its best features was the couch co-op. It allowed four players to live the world of Marvel Comics together.

9. Borderlands

Borderlands originally released on October 20th, 2009. The game was developed by Gearbox and published by 2K Games.

The game was met with good reviews upon release and sold well, especially for a new IP. While the game is rather dated now, fans fell in love with the game due to its over-the-top style, fun loot-styled reward system, and fun characters.

The ending of the game is generally regarded as its biggest flaw. But this hasn’t stopped the game from receiving two true sequels and a spin off, with a third sequel supposedly in the works. As well as gaining an insanely large and passionate fan base.

All in all, this game is a must play from 2009. Although it was far from the best game released that year, its charm and uniqueness are hard to doubt.

8. Batman: Arkham Asylum

Batman: Arkham Asylum was originally released on August 25th, 2009. It was developed by Rocksteady Studios and published by Eidos Interactive and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment.

This game made Batman fans ecstatic. It had a dark and gritty feel to it unmatched by previous entries, with all the modern flare. The game was loved for its story. Although the ending was less than amazing by far, the rest of the narrative was extremely well done.

The combat, while often repetitive, allowed for it to be elevated by the incorporation of new gadgets that fans know Batman for. For a first game in the series, it was a phenomenal beginning. And really did something new with Batman mythos, while actually doing it well.

7. Halo 3: ODST

Halo 3: ODST was originally released on September 22nd, 2009. It was developed by Bungie and published by Microsoft Game Studios exclusively for the Xbox 360.

Probably the most underappreciated Halo game ever made. This put you in the shoes of the “Rookie” a character that allowed you to really imagine yourself as them. Rather than being the genetically modified Spartan Soldier of the likes of Master Chief, you play as an “Orbital Drop Shock Trooper” or ODST, an elite soldier for the UNSC.

The game featured some open world mechanics than previous entries, and highlighted stealth as a viable option.  These features helped make the game stand out from the rest of the series, and while generally underappreciated, still beloved by many, and regarded as one of the best entries in the series. Plus it has one of the greatest soundtracks made.

6. Left 4 Dead 2

Left 4 Dead 2 came out on November 17th, 2009. It was developed and published by Valve Corporation.

Before its release, the game was rather controversial. It started with graphic content displayed on the case and in footage. It also had many fans that feared that the game was unlikely to live up to expectations. Upon its actual release, it was met with positive reactions, and has been hard pressed for a sequel. Although we’re unlikely to ever see it manufacture into something real.

The game is a cooperative first person shooter focused on survival. Up to four players make the journey through the masses of zombies in an attempt escape the apocalypse. Despite being rather short, the game featured a lot of side modes that added more content, and is known for its incredibly high replay value.

5. Dragon Age: Origins 

Dragon Age: Origins first debuted on November 3rd, 2009. The game was developed by Bioware and published by EA.

This game has received near universal praise in the years since its release. From receiving multiple different Game of the Year awards, to being regarded as one of the greatest western RPGs ever made. Which was a rather impressive feat, accomplished by making an RPG that took inspiration from all the greats, while making the game accessible to everyone.

It has a rich story with fascinating lore. The characters are engaging, and while the combat system hasn’t held up over the years, the game is still enjoyable.

The series has continued to grow with several sequels since. Now with a recent announcement that Dragon Age 4 is officially in the works, we’ll get to see if the series manages to maintain its quality.

4. Assassin’s Creed II

Assassin’s Creed II was released on November 17th, 2009. It was developed by Ubisoft Montreal and published by Ubisoft.

One of the most popular Assassin’s Creed. The game began the journey of Ezio Auditore da Firenze. He would go on to have a total of three games to himself. The most in the franchise. The game really improved on every aspect of the first game. Better characters, better plot, far more natural and diverse combat, and generally a lot more smooth in the way it rolls out its narrative.

It is an open world, action adventure game, that heavily emphasizes stealth combat. The various challenges managed to successfully keep the game fresh, when otherwise the combat would have felt more stale after awhile.

 3. Uncharted 2: Among Thieves 

This PlayStation exclusive was released on October 13th, 2009. It was developed by Naughty Dog and then published by Sony Computer Entertainment.

Uncharted 2 was the highest rated game of 2009. It continued the story of Nathan Drake, and didn’t fall victim to being a bad sequel. The game managed to lift the series to a new level. With an intriguing story about famed adventurer Marco Polo, and a race against a group of mercenaries, it really did manage to draw the player in.

Now, the series is considered to be one of the greatest exclusives to PlayStation. However, this is arguably the best entry in the series. While it doesn’t have the improved graphics and game play of some of the newer titles, it does manage to have one of the best narratives in the series. Fortunately, it also managed to handle the combat in way that didn’t drag nearly as much by incorporating better puzzles and mechanics.

 2. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2

Now, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 was released on November 10th, 2009. It was developed by Infinity Ward, and then published by Activision.

So, this game was nearly instantly referred to as one of the greatest shooters ever made, and to this day that title is maintained. For a game turning ten, years old to be unsurpassed, is on the impressive side of things. Not only in terms of quality, but in terms of pure love by the fan base The series is often considered to have gone down the drain.

However, this was peak Call of Duty. Which means that it had it all. From a powerful, and fun plot, to characters that we cared about. Not to mention that its multiplayer. The maps that the game possessed were unparalleled, its customization allowed players to develop their own style, and anyone could succeed because as far as shooters go, this was a balanced game.

1. Minecraft

Minecraft made its historic debut on May 17th, 2009. It was developed and published by Mojang. Although the game wouldn’t make its major debut until 2011, it was still released for the public in 2009. Kind of cheating here a bit, but oh well.

Without a doubt, Minecraft is one of the most important games ever made. It became the biggest deal in the gaming world, unopposed until the recent Fortnite fad. Just about everyone, and anyone knows what this game is. For a game that was originally an indie project, nothing comes close to it. Even today it has more monthly players than Fortnite.

Not only that, but it has received constant support. New content is always being added, and due to its style the game isn’t at risk of becoming dated like some of the other titles here. It also has what is probably the greatest replay value of any game, ever made. Minecraft is without a doubt the greatest game turning ten this year. The phenomenon it spawned is unlikely to be topped for a very long time.

What do you think? Any games you believe should be on here that are not? Tell us your opinion in the comments below and stick with us here at Culture of Gaming for more content like this.

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