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Unless you’re an eagle-eyed bargain hunter, the price of videogames can put a serious dent in your finances. Here in the US, $60 a pop means the game in question needs to offer hours of content to offset the steadily increasing cost. Sadly, the traditional lifespan of a hugely hyped game goes like this:
In the end, your hard-earned cash amounts to 10 hours of fun and a rip-off trade-in at Gamestop. However, some games defy the odds and deliver on their promises, so that we will keep playing them for months after their release. In extreme cases (like those collected here), the games last well into the next year and even into the launch window of their annually exploited sequel.
These are the games that, despite being several months old, we just can’t put down. And judging by the number of hours logged onto Xbox Live and PSN, you can’t quit ‘em either.
Release date: August 27, 2008 (eleven months ago)
Why we’re all still playing: Four-player beat ‘em up action at its finest. Whereas most brawlers are content to give your characters a simple three hit combo and a special attack, Crashers offers up four distinct warrior wizards that can string moves together almost indefinitely. It’s one of the most stylish, well-produced, perfectly balanced scrappers we’ve played in years, a throwback title that celebrates that past while building upon it.
Not convinced this is worthy of the list? Consider this news blurb that shows the game crossing a major milestone (one million users), as well as this story that reveals Crashers to be XBLA’s most-played title of 2008. If you’re not playing it, chances are someone you know is. A lot.
And would you look at that – developer The Behemoth just announced a PS3 version, ensuring a million new users will play this well into 2010.
Release date: October 28, 2008 (nine months ago)
Why we’re all still playing: Any create-a-character RPG with game-changing choices lends itself to repeat plays, so right off the top we can attribute Fallout 3’s staying power to all those unseen options eating away at our completionist minds. What keeps it going beyond those initial 50-hour playthroughs is the steady stream of DLC add-ons. The first, Operation Anchorage, wasn’t met with high praise, but subsequent packs have tacked on more missions, more locations and more hours lost to a radioactive futurescape.
We just pounded through Broken Steel (May) and Point Lookout (June), and still have Mothership Zeta to finish in August. Bethesda says the latter will be the last of Fallout 3’s DLC, but in all honesty, that’s plenty. After 100-something hours, it’s best if we finally move the hell along.