Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The 2011 Year In Review

2011. It was an alright year. Well, the last sixth of it was pretty interesting. Let's look at the year in media as I experienced it.

Top 3 Favorite Games I played in 2011

 3. Final Fantasy XIII - This game wasn't released in 2011. None of my three favorite game experiences this year were released in 2011. This post is going to be different from most year-end posts in that I'm still not caught up with the times. No Skyrim here. 2011 was full of great games, but I'm still in 2010. In any case, Final Fantasy XIII was pretty enjoyable for me. Yes, it has issues, major issues. Yes, in the grand scheme of the Final Fantasy series, it isn't top-tier at all. But I enjoyed it. It takes the series in a new direction, and it's the first Final Fantasy to cross into HD. If given a real chance, it's a somewhat deep and engaging experience. Review at: http://www.coronajumper.com/2011/08/game-review-final-fantasy-xiii.html

 2. Bioshock 2 - The sequel to one of the greatest games of all time. It doesn't quite measure up, but it comes close. Much like FFXIII, it draws a fair amount of bashing. Difference is, while FFXIII gets bashed for being different, Bioshock 2 gets bashed for being "nothing new". It's Bioshock without as brilliant of a story as the first game. Well, I say more Bioshock is a good thing. Protip: Check out the Minerva's Den DLC. It may not be part of the main story, but it's the best thing the game has to offer.

 1. Mirror's Edge - "This city used to pulse with energy; dirty and dangerous, but alive and wonderful." Mirror's Edge is one of the most unique games of the past ten years. It isn't for everyone, and the difficulty can be steep at times. It has an artistic magic about it that very few games even begin to have, though. The city that the game takes place in draws elements from many real-world cities and combines them into one fictional metropolis; cities like Hong Kong, New York, Boston, Chicago, and Tokyo have elements in the city of Mirror's Edge. It conveys the wonder that a city can have, and the gameplay is pretty good too.

Top 3 Favorite Movies I watched in 2011

3. Harry Potter 7.2 - The exciting conclusion to the Harry Potter series was one of the better movies I saw this year, and a particularly enjoyable time. With the recent release of the movie on blu-ray and DVD, look for a belated review here in the near future. 

 2. Casablanca - One of the greatest movies of all time, and it took me until 2011 to see it. The amount of legendary quotes that emerged from this movie is astounding.

1. The Hurt Locker - A truly outstanding work of cinema that deserves to be remembered for decades the same way we remember classics like Casablanca now. It's an unflinching look at war and the participants.

Top 3 Favorite Corona Jumper Posts of 2011 - Here are my three favorite things that I posted on here this year.

3. Bebe's Kids - http://www.coronajumper.com/2011/09/bebes-kids-worst-snes-game-ever.html
A look at one of the worst games in history. Tearing this game apart was a lot of fun, and almost made up for the two hours I wasted playing the thing.

 2. The Loin King - http://www.coronajumper.com/2011/02/loin-king.html 
Another unserious post about a Super NES game. The difference is, this game isn't bad at all. Had a lot of fun with this post.

 1. Black Swan - http://www.coronajumper.com/2011/01/movie-review-black-swan.html
Now for something a bit different. I really enjoyed this movie, and I enjoyed writing about it even more. It's a dark movie, and it demanded a dark review.

Top 3 Favorite Songs of 2011
3. Reminder of Mortality: An amazingly well done fan-made remix of the Xenogears final battle theme, posted on Youtube by Rukunetsu. Check out some of his work, you'll be glad you did.

2. Kid Cudi - Alive: This is great driving music for night-dwellers.

1. State of Mind - Sunking: This song got me into Drum and Bass... to an extent. It's one of the few songs from the genre that I'm really into, but the fact that it hasn't gotten old after many listens gets it the #1 spot here.

Top 3 Favorite Scenes from Movies I Watched in 2011

3. That scene from Sucker Punch where she fights the samurai to the dulcet tones of "Army of One" - Yes, Sucker Punch. It wasn't the best movie of the year (or week), but this particular scene is pretty intense; especially later once the music thunders in. It's just unfortunate that the scene didn't mean anything (Spoiler alert: it was one of the numerous daydreams in the movie) which takes it down ten notches. But it was still memorable.

2. Harry Potter Vs. Voldemort - A clash for the ages and a fitting finale to one of the most consistently good movie series' of the past decade.

1. The Ending of Blue Valentine - Perhaps a sibling movie to "The Notebook" in some ways, Blue Valentine has just as much of a message for the viewer. Nowhere was this clearer than in the ending of the movie, which illustrated that as hard as it is to move on, it is possible.

Top 5 Most Memorable Moments for me in Entertainment this Year

  5. The Terminator 2 Blu-Ray - Possibly my favorite movie of all time, only in ultra-sharp resolution. Was pretty memorable from the get-go when I spent the first five minutes of the movie wondering how anything could look this cool.

4. The laser gun in Bioshock 2: Minerva's Den. A laser gun? In Bioshock? That's right. It was pretty sweet. 

 3. Assassin's Creed II's intro - Staying on the game tack, the first twenty minutes or so of Assassin's Creed II (alas, all I've played) are amazing. They achieve things that are usually only the dominion of movies: they make you care about the characters and leave you feeling some degree of awe. If the rest of the game continues that high level of excellence, then it's one of the greats. Certainly something to look forward to seeing the rest of. This intro seemed to indicate that this was the true beginning of the series in a lot of ways; AC1's story is largely left behind by the second game and onward.

2. Mirror's Edge - Memorable is a good way to describe this game. It may well be the only game from this year that I can consistently recall exactly what my surroundings were as I played it.

1. Seeing Hulk Hogan live - In a year where I also saw The Rock live, it is unquestionable that seeing The Hulkster live was even more exciting. He's a living legend. Regardless of your opinions on the guy, seeing him in person is a powerful collective experience. In the picture above, I'm somewhere in the distance on the right, cheering along with everyone else.

That wraps up my year in review that has little to do with the actual year. Three posts left until my 100th post spectacular, so stay tuned.


  1. Did the T2 bluray include Tears for Fears singing during the intro?

    1. Unfortunately, Tears for Fears was absent from the T2 blu ray.