Some developers are always great. Some have peaks and valleys. And some tend to shine in one particular generation.

For instance, I think many would agree that Squaresoft shined brightly during the original PlayStation era; I know they were my favorite developers by far . But what about this generation? Which developer has really impressed you most? Perhaps one that surprised you…?

For me, I could say Rockstar, because both Grand Theft Auto IV and Red Dead Redemption are two of the very best games of the generation, in my opinion. Plus, they branched out with RDR (and no, I don't really count Red Dead Revolver ), which is a huge step for that developer. I also have to say that both Media Molecule and Quantic Dream impressed the hell out of me with LittleBigPlanet and Heavy Rain .

We might also toss a nod in Epic's direction, as I still love Gears of War 2 and the third entry is going to rule, guaranteed. They also helped with Bulletstorm , which I thought was great fun. Lastly, consideration must be given to Guerrilla, simply because they turned Killzone into an elite franchise after a mediocre showing during the PS2 era. But above all else, I have to go with Naughty Dog.

To be honest, I was never all that enamored with the Jak and Crash Bandicoot games and really, what else did Naughty Dog do before Uncharted blew us all away? We're talking about a developer that sort of came out of nowhere (despite a solid reputation) and trumped all the big boys with Uncharted 2: Among Thieves , which is often deemed the very best game of the generation so far. And of course, Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception has a shot at that title.

I mean, Naughty Dog was a good developer. Maybe even great by some standards. But I really didn't expect something like Uncharted to come from them; it was a total surprise. Which developer has impressed you the most this generation?

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Carlight
Carlight
9 years ago

For me it's naughty dog all the way , the uncharted serie blew me away

maxpontiac
maxpontiac
9 years ago

Indeed. No one comes close in my eyes.

godsman
godsman
9 years ago

I have played Uncharted 2 to death, but in terms of most impressive, I would have to say MGS4. Those cutscenes are in-game cutscenes where changing outfits will change the cutscenes as well.
Uncharted 2 are pre-rendered cutscenes made with the game engine. Although I heard Uncharted 3 will be in-game cutscenes.

Considering MGS4 is Kojima's 1st PS3 game back in 2008 and Uncharted 2 is the second game by Naughty Dog in 2009, it's impressive enough to claim this title "most impressive this gen".

Zemus101
Zemus101
9 years ago

I'd probably agree with Naughty Dog being the most impressive and surprising, but I still have yet to actually finish an Uncharted game. Just not really my kind of thing I guess?

I was really hoping for Square-Enix to continue making top-notch products, but yeah …not so much. FFXIII was alright, I had some fun with it, but that's all I've played from them so far. (Not including the stellar PSP titles)

Ah, I'll go with Media Molecule. New company so I can't really say I was surprised, but I'm extremely impressed with what they've done. Which was something completely different than what I've played a million times before (at least for a console gamer that has been around since the 80's anyways)


Last edited by Zemus101 on 8/30/2011 11:10:38 AM

Qubex
Qubex
9 years ago

Ben, agree with everything there about the developer choices… including Rockstar… ultimately for me, it is Naughty Dog, Santa Monica and Guerilla!

Had some of the best gaming fun ever on Killzone 2 multi-player… superb.

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"


Last edited by Qubex on 8/30/2011 11:10:49 AM

Neghvar
Neghvar
9 years ago

Bioware – Despite the dumb downed Dragon age 2.

Naughty Dog – No explanation

Sega – Valkyria Chronicles, Yakuza

From Software – What impressed me about theese guys ALL of their games (i have'nt played lost kingdoms though) was mediocre crap, and they pulled off demon souls. Can gaurentee dark souls will be fantastic, i can see FS will stick to this formula for awhile.

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

Sega for sure, despite some dumb choices of late.

Minishmaru
Minishmaru
9 years ago

Minus Bioware, I completely like your choices 🙂

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
9 years ago

Naughty Dog, Sucker Punch, Insomniac, Media Molecule, Quantic Dreams, Level 5, Gust/NISA, Sony Liverpool/London/Japan, Sega, Evolution studios, SCE Santa Monica, etc.

Naughty Dog probably takes top honors because of Uncharted. The others I've mentioned have all produced high quality games as well. The 3rd parties named have continued to show faith in the PS3 brand as well.

I could add EA to that list as well, they really pushed to get their sports franchises in particular up to scratch on the PS3. Criterion Games has to get a honorable mention too because when Burnout Paradise released as a multi-plat game, no other multi-platform games were coming even close to matching the 360 versions, and the PS3 version of BP was the better one. Not only that but Criterion retrofitted trophies and custom soundtrack options to their game, showing developer commitment far beyond that of the vast majority of 3rd party devs.

In the end, Drake and Naughty Dog have to take the title as best of the generation – so far.

SE surprised me the most (in a way) with their abject failure. Namco has been one of the most inconsistent, showing good support for PS3 in Japan, but terrible support outside of Japan. Level 5 came out of nowhere with WKC, but I think that Media Molecule was probably the biggest surprise with LBP. It's such a fresh take on the platformer.


Last edited by TheHighlander on 8/30/2011 11:19:17 AM

maxpontiac
maxpontiac
9 years ago

That's a great point about EA.

Spanky
Spanky
9 years ago

I used to buy anything that had EA on it knowing it was going to be a good solid game…they started letting me down and I now wait for the reviews before picking one up. They became complacent, or cocky there for awhile , but, I think they just MAY be coming around again.

I'm liking Sucker Punch, Ubisoft, and Naughty Dog right now.

AcHiLLiA
AcHiLLiA
9 years ago

They're alot of developers that I like, so I will just say the game series that caught my eye more. Bioshock series, Uncharted series, Heavy Rain, LA Noire, etc.


Last edited by AcHiLLiA on 8/30/2011 11:23:43 AM

SoulController
SoulController
9 years ago

Naughty Dog goes without saying & Sucker Punch doesn't get enough credit from non Sony only sites on how addictive infamous is. Media Molecule is up there & killzone still blows me away with its polish.

For me, I was most impressed with EA for taking so many risk on new IPs this gen. Dead Space is my favorite multiplat series hands down. Not to mention working with bioware was a smart move.

Oh, & I cant believe how hard of a fall Square took this gen. What a heartbreaker & their failure almost killed the JRpg genre


Last edited by SoulController on 8/30/2011 11:25:34 AM

jimmyhandsome
jimmyhandsome
9 years ago

For me it'd have to be a 3 way tie between Epic, Sucker Punch and Naughty Dog. Epic really set the bar for third-person shooters with the Gears series, and I'm really looking forward to Gears 3. Sucker Punch (to me) really came out of no where with the inFAMOUS series which quickly became my most played singleplayer game(s) of this generation.

Naughty Dog is self explanatory with the Uncharted series.


Last edited by jimmyhandsome on 8/30/2011 11:24:42 AM

LimitedVertigo
LimitedVertigo
9 years ago

GOW is mindless action with little to no purpose.

BTW I've noticed you on Joystiq bringing the hate.

jimmyhandsome
jimmyhandsome
9 years ago

Sick opinion, man.

And I don't have an account at Joystiq? Is someone using my Handsum Jimmy handle?!

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Agree LV.

MRSUCCESS
MRSUCCESS
9 years ago

This generation? Hmm I would have to say from Software and Quantic Dream. Although they have made one game each, Heavy Rain and Demons's Souls, they were very and I mean very good games. I look forward to whatever Quantic Dream and From Software make because frankly they were very impressive games.

On the other hand, nothing beats Kojima Productions in my book. I am eagerly anticipating the Fox engine they're working on and MGS:Rising. I am sure I am not the only one looking forward to a PS3 MGS game in which Big Boss is the main character. n_n


Last edited by MRSUCCESS on 8/30/2011 11:29:32 AM

Fox hounder
Fox hounder
9 years ago

Amen to that, and speaking of Rising, i hope we get some news on that soon. On a side note, Kojima mentioned something about a Peace Walker sequel sometime back, maybe that's his mystery project.


Last edited by Fox hounder on 8/30/2011 11:47:35 AM

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

From Software also made 3D Dot Game Heroes and whatever Armored Core games have released this gen, so not just one.

berserk
berserk
9 years ago

Obsidian Entertainment , i was really impressed about how you re choice made a real difference on what was going to happen later . Too bad the rest of the game was not as polished .

Going stealth was pretty fun tho .

It s one of the rare game ( i think the only one this generation beside Heavy Rain ) that i had a urge to do a second playthrought right after finishing it a first time .

From software also surprised me with demons souls .
I was really happy to see one of their game finally get a lot of attention .A game that had everything i love about King field and more .

mk ultra
mk ultra
9 years ago

I think That Game Company needs to be mentioned for thinking outside the box. If I had to pick I would agree with ND. When they sold the Crash Bandicoot name I was pretty upset with them but then they released Uncharted and I saw what a wise decision they made.


Last edited by mk ultra on 8/30/2011 11:51:58 AM

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
9 years ago

That's the name I forgot to include (well, one of them) That Game Company…Nice.

NiteKrawler
NiteKrawler
9 years ago

Ubisoft. Assassin's Creed has become not only my favorite game franchise of the generation, but my favorite game franchise ever.

VampDeLeon
VampDeLeon
9 years ago

^ Though they've been milking Ezio, the AC Universe as a whole is really immersing going through playing as one of your ancestors for the good of the world :p.

bebestorm
bebestorm
9 years ago

Kojima Productions MGS4 is still my favorite exclusive. I can't wait for the HD collection.

Rockstar has always been favorite.

Ubisoft for creating my favorite series this gen Assassin's Creed.

Rocksteady for a freaking awesome Batman.

Bioware Mass Effect

Criterion Burnout Paradise and NFS Hot Pursuit… I've never bought racing games before!

Kiryu
Kiryu
9 years ago

Naughty Dog,Sucker Punch,Quantic Dream,Yakuza Creators,Kojima Productions and RockSteady.

Hynad
Hynad
9 years ago

Naughty Dog all the way! Uncharted is my new IP of the gen, no less.

Alienange
Alienange
9 years ago

You definitely mention a couple of good ones with Rockstar and Naughty Dog but I'd also like to give props to a developer that did what so many could not this gen.

Rocksteady took an aging game engine and made the best Batman game of all time. They could have easily gone the "movie tie-in" route but no, they came out of nowhere and showed long standing devs that there is a LOT of room left for a new developer with good ideas and some coding skill.

SoulController
SoulController
9 years ago

Agree 100% I knew I was forgetting at least one dev

LimitedVertigo
LimitedVertigo
9 years ago

Rare, without a doubt. Screw AAA titles, Kinect Sports and re-releases of their N64 days on Live are reason enough to warrant the huge amount of money MS spent on securing them inhouse.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
9 years ago

ROTFLMAO! OK, best sarcasm of the day goes to….

Ignitus
Ignitus
9 years ago

In no particular order:

Epic Games, Gears of War.
Bungie, Halo3.
Naughty Dog, Uncharted.
Mistwalker, Lost Oddyssey (A true Final Fantasy)
Criterion, Burnout Paradise.
RockSteady, Batman Arkham.
Gearbox, Borderlands.
2K Boston Australia, Bioshock.
Harmonix, RockBand.


Last edited by Ignitus on 8/30/2011 12:44:14 PM

Lotusflow3r
Lotusflow3r
9 years ago

Mystwalker indeed!

telly
telly
9 years ago

Naughty Dog, Bioware and Epic stand apart from the rest, in my opinion. MGS 4 was AWESOME, but Konami hasn't really "wowed" me since then. Rockstar has definitely made a terrific showing this gen as well, though I want to see what GTA V looks like before I put them up in my top, elite tier. The Gears of War games, the Mass Effect Series, and Uncharted as the games that I think this gen will be remembered for. It will be well-deserved recognition.

erislocker
erislocker
9 years ago

ubisoft for assassin's creed
and
Naughty Dog (for no apparent reason…) 🙂

Beamboom
Beamboom
9 years ago

Criterion – for the amount of love and support they gave Burnout Paradise. Free goodies came in a steady stream of patches/upgrades. From a gamers point of view they did *everything* right with that game.

Crytek – everyone expected them to fail miserably on the ps3. Then came Crysis 2, the coolest fps I've played in a very long time. Incredibly well crafted both as a single player and multi player shooter. Can't wait to see what other devs will build on that engine.

2K/Irrational – BioShock was so much more than just a shooter, it was an experience I would never want to be without.

But above all: BioWare – the best storytellers on any platform. KOTOR, Neverwinter Nights, Dragon Age, Mass Effect… I shall remain forever thankful.


Last edited by Beamboom on 8/30/2011 12:54:42 PM

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

Sega Wow, Sucker Punch, Insomniac, Irrational. As good as ND is, there's still something holding them back from impressing me. Maybe it's just that they've been playing it safe

tayizfire
tayizfire
9 years ago

[email protected] dog not impressing you….if thats the case you will never be impressed by gaming …only thing thats almost as good or equal to uncharted is heavy rain…but wow at not being impressed by naughty dog

Ludicrous_Liam
Ludicrous_Liam
9 years ago

If you weren't impressed by the 'nepal warzone' chapter of Uncharted 2, well then, I'm afraid your a lost cause 🙁

Seriously, it's like Ben's article, if you don't like uncharted then you just don't know a great game when you see one. I'm sorry but there's no objecting that. It's okay to say 'well yeah it wasn't bad it was actually pretty good..' or whatever but you have to admit it's the best of this generation, because it quite simply, is. It's border-line perfection in every regard..so preference can hardly come into it.

LimitedVertigo
LimitedVertigo
9 years ago

Lawless eats kangaroos for breakfast.

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

LV, Kangaroos are better for lunch in case you ever get the urge to hunt one down.

Liam, I get what you're saying, and I've extolled my love for Uncharted several times. It is indeed one of the best of the generation, if not all time, but for some reason, I don't go WOW! when I play it. Everything about it is ordinary, but done in such a way as to make it extraordinary. It still lacks a certain draw that Valkyria Chronicles, Heavy Rain, inFamous, Bioshock and Demon's Souls has for me. I can't really explain it.

Kevin555
Kevin555
9 years ago

Man, one guy admits to liking Uncharted but not being wowed by it & it's still not enough with everyone jumping on his arse asking 21 questions why he wasn't licking the cover. Let the lad be ffs. If he hates it he hates it, if he likes it he likes it. It's not stopping you from loving it is it?

Breathe in……breathe out….

Everything is going to be ok, we can get through this together. 🙂


Last edited by Kevin555 on 8/31/2011 4:42:15 AM

Ludicrous_Liam
Ludicrous_Liam
9 years ago

Okay, okay. Okay. Just let me have him in the interrogration room 5 more mins and I'll get to the bottom of this. And no, I don't know what happend to his missing finger. 😛

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Ah there's so many. I give Bethesda massive props for their conversion of Fallout from a really bad isometric RPG to an immersive, addictive, atmospheric virtual post apocalyptic world that I'll never forget with Fallout 3.

Visceral for spooking me with Dead Space and bringing Alighieri's Hell to life with Dante's Inferno.

Eidos Montreal surprised me with Deus Ex being so good.

Ninja Theory for Heavenly Sword and Enslaved

The Batman games aren't for me, but you have to give massive credit to Rocksteady. Look what they've done on that horrible engine!

All the Sony 1st and 2nd party devs have been impressive.


Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 8/30/2011 1:58:17 PM

LimitedVertigo
LimitedVertigo
9 years ago

I received the game, thanks again for selling it to me. I'm a little peeved there wasn't a personal 500word letter inside to explain how much I mean to you.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Glad you got it, actually I meant to write you a funny note but I had just come off a gaming session and packed that up at about 5AM to get it ready to ship the next day so I wasn't in any shape.

tayizfire
tayizfire
9 years ago

No one is going to give capcom a shoutout ..the fighting genre is getting no love? capcom is up top also…minus there horrible DLC

LimitedVertigo
LimitedVertigo
9 years ago

Capcom has easily been one of the worst developers this generation of gaming. I literally laughed at your entire comment.

StubbornScorpio
StubbornScorpio
9 years ago

I have to agree with Vertigo on that one. The rereleases of MvC 3 and Dead Rising 3 along with three, THREE cancelled Megaman games, the fatuous one-save-only file in Resident Evil: Mercenaries….
All that compounded with the DLC "system" is absolutely atrocious. I refuse to buy any Capcom title from here on out.