Game of the month, April 2012

Winner: Fez

Read the Fez review.

The best puzzle games have the ability to make the player feel inversely smart and stupid. Fez takes this further than any game we’ve ever played, giving us the feeling of being both cackling genius and babbling idiot within minutes of each other. It’s an absolute triumph in creating something new both in terms of its platforming and its puzzle solving; blending together genres in ways we’ve never seen.

It’s about opening doors, exploring, deciphering languages, and dipping your toe into the well of insanity just enough to hopefully come out with the knowledge needed to open one more door, to get one more cube. We’re sure some will be turned off by the dense, unorthodox style – it’s absolutely not for everyone – but we’re in love, and expect to spend many more hours unraveling the game’s secrets. 

Runner-up: The Walking Dead: A New Day

Read The Walking Dead game review.

Telltale did a fantastic job of turning The Walking Dead into a videogame, trumping its attempts at adapting Jurassic Park and Back to the Future handily. The mix of old-school puzzle solving and action-based quick-time events spoke perfectly to the source material, creating an absurdly tense, emotional experience that blindsided us completely. If it can keep up the pace with future episodes The Walking Dead could be one of the developer's best, and we're really, really hoping that ends up being the case. We're also hoping we eventually get to kill that one guy - if you played the game you know exactly who we're talking about.


  • yasmarc - May 1, 2012 10:46 a.m.

    Trials should have taken it. Fez was interesting for about 5min and then you realize all you do is spin the world around until the answer is obvious. Trials' user tracks are amazing already too and so much easier to get than the last version! Yes I love Trials....
  • FemJesse - May 1, 2012 5:31 p.m.

    Then you haven't scratched the surface of Fez...
  • thomas-buxton - May 1, 2012 8:53 a.m.

    It's probably due to it having come out last year, but for 360 gamers I'd hope I wasn't the only one who regarded The Witcher 2: Enhanced Edition as their Game of the Month. Since between Mass Effect 3 and Max Payne 3 there seem to be very few major releases, it was refreshing to get an RPG which provided such a challenge and such innovation alongside a compelling (if convoluted) lengthy storyline.
  • BurntToShreds - May 1, 2012 8:10 a.m.

    I do not believe that Fez deserves the title of "Game of the Month". When you compare it to other indie games, it's pretty much the same. It has retro graphics, and it involves manipulation of the world around you. I have seen free Flash games with a higher amount of effort placed into them. I am not trying to be caustic, I truly mean that I have seen more effort placed into a flash game that the effort I have seen placed into Fez. I think Skullgirls would have been a much better candidate. It is based around solid mechanics and with art that took a lot more effort than arranging pixels.
  • CitizenWolfie - May 1, 2012 2:24 a.m.

    Good month for Downloadable games! Any idea on when Skullgirls is out for the PS3 yet? I prefer the PS3 controller for fighting games. I give Fez a try but I didn't like it. It was very clever I have to admit, but nothing made me go "Wow! I really gotta download the full version." I played the Walking Dead right through just yesterday and I really enjoyed it. If that's the sort of game Telltale makes I might give some of their other titles a go. Love how loads of choices you make seem to actually affect how people react to you and have consequences. It feels like the game that I really wanted Heavy Rain to be.
  • Shazamin - April 30, 2012 9:14 p.m.

    Good to see the downloadable titles getting some recognition this month. I'll probably wait for all the episodes of The Walking Dead to release before I buy it though.
  • Nikku7 - April 30, 2012 8:14 p.m.

    Seriously people, give the indie games and lesser known titles a chance every once in a while. The "these games don't deserve to get critical acclaim because they aren't even a full game" bullshit is incredibly shallow. Games like this obviously don't have the kind of resources that AAA games have, but that usually just means they have to stand out by being really good for what little they have to work with.
  • TheMcFinder - April 30, 2012 4:43 p.m.

    i feel your pain, haha
  • fatdog12300 - April 30, 2012 3:46 p.m.

    Wow, how is this the first time I'm hearing about Fez? It looks pretty good. Too bad it's not on PSN.
  • Kibosh - April 30, 2012 3:28 p.m.

    I would've liked to see Trials Evolution. Fez is great, haven't had a chance to investigate The Walking Dead yet.
  • Bitchslapthehomeless - April 30, 2012 3:22 p.m.

    No Witcher 2? I know it's just a port, but still... it's one of the best RPG's ever.
  • Redeater - April 30, 2012 3:56 p.m.

    Damn was that this month? Ok I know for a fact that the Witcher 2 is better than Walking Dead. I enjoyed Walking dead but it isn't finished yet and Witcher 2 is one of my favorite RPGs in years.
  • IcePotato - April 30, 2012 2:45 p.m.

    So where are the real games?
  • Marteo Broter - April 30, 2012 2:56 p.m.

    Are you implying these games are fake?
  • slimjim441 - April 30, 2012 2:56 p.m.

    First off, these are real games. Don't be hatin just because it's not your idea of an optimal gaming experience (see, I didn't even call you a CoD/Halo fuck). Secondly, did you see this month's line-up? Besides these two, what else was there? Prototype 2? Please. Both of these games were really fun; I'd honestly put Walking Dead on top, but that's just me.
  • BurntToShreds - May 2, 2012 6:57 a.m.

    Fez has very little of what makes a real game, though. It has platforming, a special ability, and objects to collect, but that's it. There is little penalty for lacking in skill, which is something that real old-school games had. You know, the ones that these indie games are inspired by. Also, there was a flash game made with this exact same world-rotation concept that actually had more game-play concepts, such as enemies and penalties for dying. It was released for free and did not take five years to make.
  • slimjim441 - May 2, 2012 12:56 p.m.

    I'll give you the 'flash game' points, but you can't say that little penalty for failure doesn't make it a game. By that logic, a lot of amazing games like Kirby's Epic Yarn and Myst aren't 'real games.'
  • lemur - April 30, 2012 2:30 p.m.

    I haven't played Fez so I'm being bias here, but the walking dead is my game of the month. I'm not sure on how it adapts to the comic or show (never read or seen it) but that game crammed more emotion in 3 hours then most do in the entire game. And right now I'm real iffy about [PROTOTYPE2]. It improved from the first game in every way but something about puts me off. I think it's the over dull looking setting and lack of color.
  • Salazans - April 30, 2012 1:41 p.m.

    I love Fez (Great Fun), but the developer? He can go go F**K himself
  • BladedFalcon - April 30, 2012 1:36 p.m.

    Congrats to FEZ! And well, I would have put Skullgirls as a runner-up, at least...

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