For some reason I’ve always avoided doing year-end lists of favorite things — I don’t really know why — but I just felt like doing one this year, and so here goes. Now, of course, this is all based on what I’ve actually seen/played/used/listened to, and so consider this a personal compilation of the favorite things I experienced this year in the world of media (it’s not a “best of” thing) — and note that it is limited to things that were released in 2010. Two categories that may be conspicuous by their absence are books and magazines — I just don’t feel like I read enough books to justify a proper list, and for magazines, I don’t have five truly favorites that come to mind.
So here then is my highly unscientific, truly subjective list of favorite media obsessions of 2010. Each category includes five items in alphabetical order (I think it’s silly to rank them in order), and I’ve occasionally included a few honorable mentions, things that I really wanted to have in those favorite fives.
As you’ll see, my favorite genre tends to be RPGs (with a strong emphasis on action RPGs), and then racing games too. I could probably have done a separate downloadable game category as well, but decided to just put them all together.
- Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood
- Fallout: New Vegas
- Mass Effect 2
- Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit
- Red Dead Redemption
- Honorable Mentions: Costume Quest, Fable III, Limbo, Heavy Rain, Split/Second
FAVORITE IPAD APPS
There are many more apps that I really like, but these are the ones that I use the most, that I have in my dock. I decided to only list iPad apps and not iPhone apps (same for games), since I do really spend a lot more time on my iPad, and my iPhone is just something I pull out when I’m bored waiting somewhere (most used apps on that would be Twitter, Instapaper, Camera, and listening to podcasts).
- Honorable Mentions: Air Video
FAVORITE IPAD GAMES
I’ve kept this to real iPad versions of games only — I did play a hell of a lot of DoDonPachi Resurrection on my iPad, but it’s really just an iPhone release.
- Infinity Blade
- Plants vs. Zombies HD
- Robot Unicorn Attack HD
- Word with Friends
- Honorable Mentions: Highborn HD, Small Worlds, Space Invaders Infinity Gene, Canabalt, Puzzle Agent HD
FAVORITE TV SHOWS
This year was absolutely amazing for TV, and you’ll see that my tastes are definitely on the cable series side of things (Community is the only network show to be included) — that fact that you can be truly mature is one thing, and the shorter seasons (and so more focused storylines) is another.
- Eastbound & Down
- Mad Men
- Sons of Anarchy
- True Blood
- Honorable Mentions: Community, Treme, The Walking Dead, Louie, How to Make It in America, Bored to Death
This was difficult because I obviously haven’t seen a ton of movies that came out in theaters in recent months in North America, so my list could honestly have included movies that came out towards the end of 2009 as well. I know the two Mesrine films originally came out in France in 2008, but I felt like I could include them since they came out in North America this year.
- Mesrine: Killer Instinct/Mesrine: Public Enemy #1
- The American
- The Ghost Writer
- Honorable Mentions: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, Kick-Ass, The Social Network, Exit Through the Exit Shop
Music is also very difficult, since I listen to so much of it, and to such a variety — which is one of the reasons I started Codex — but I think I was still able to come up with a list of favorites, in part based on the “most played” count in iTunes.
- Record Collection (Mark Ronson & The Business Intl)
- Swim (Caribou)
- There Is Love in You (Four Tet)
- The Suburbs (The Arcade Fire)
- The Way Out (The Books)
- Honorable Mentions: The Social Network Soundtrack (Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross), King of the Beach (Wavves), Not Music (Stereolab)
Again, these are mostly based on the “most played” count in iTunes.
- “A Cold Freezin’ Night” (The Books)
- “Bang Bang Bang (feat. Q-Tip and MNDR)” (Mark Ronson & The Business Intl)
- “Happy Up Here” (Royksopp)
- “Threshold Apprehension” (Black Francis)
- “Odessa” (Caribou)
- Honorable Mentions: “King of the Beach” (Wavves), “Rococo” (The Arcade Fire)
This was the hardest category for me, because I read A LOT of comics, and so it was hard to narrow it down to just five — and these five are basically the things that I could remember really liking — and the reason I don’t even include any honorable mentions is because it would be ridiculously long.
- Justice League: Generation Lost
- Richard Stark’s Parker: The Outfit
- Scott Pilgrim
- Sweet Tooth
- The Unwritten