Thursday, April 28, 2011

This Generation's Top Ten Game Trailers

Over the years I must have sat through hundreds of trailers for upcoming games, eyes glued, ears pricked, for a brief glimpse of the undoubted perfect slice of gaming Nirvana that would be in my controller wielding palms before I knew it. This current generation more than any other has mastered the art of the game trailer, creating a few brief minutes of exhilaration or curiosity that leave us wanting and needing more. If gamers have some hidden button labelled 'need' then the trailers know how to push it every time. By marrying visual magnificence and perfectly placed music they deliver something truly special, something that will live long in the recesses of your mind. The music within the trailers here, for me at least, has now become synonymous with the sequences below. As soon as the first few bars kick in my mind paints pictures of explosions, zombies, assassins, warfare and worlds a million miles away from my own.

Few of the games on show here lived up to my dizzying expectations, expectations that had been built skyscraper high by a few flashy, hi-tempo, explosion riddled, action packed and compulsive minutes screened into my living room for that exact purpose. But what each one did, and spectacularly so, was they made me not just want the game on show, but need it. Like some modern age games obsessed Gollum the words 'my precious' may even have unwittingly escaped my lips as my eyes became transfixed by the images. Surprisingly some of the games actually did touch upon the gaming greatness I'd eagerly anticipated, the others....well typically, not quite.

Below are the 10 from this generation that have found set up home in my mind, and a very happy home it is too. Enjoy.

10. Mafia II
A trailer that encapsulates everything that I love about this game. Great dialogue, wonderful voice acting, depth of characters, blazing tommy guns and a soundtrack to die for, it made me an offer I couldn't refuse.

9. Crysis 2
No action from the games' hero here, rather a superb setting of the scene and more genius use of music. A wonderfully played out trailer.

8. Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
It's only right that one of the greatest games ever to grace our screens also provides one of the greatest trailers. PS3 owners everywhere drooled in eager anticipation of Nathan Drakes' return, and here's why.

7. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2

Hitting like the perfect trailer for the MTV generation, quick snapshots of stunning action and set pieces had the CoD brigade on excitement overload.

6. Halo:Reach
Wonderfully produced live action trailer, another perfect mesh of sound and vision, and to be honest we expect nothing less from the Halo universe.

5. Assassins Creed
To be honest it might just be me that loves this trailer, it's short and gives only the briefest of glimpses of the game to come, but it's all made so very sweet by the inspired choice of Massive Attacks' 'Teardrop' as the backing track.

4. Halo 3
No action at all in this one, just hand painted models amidst a scene of war, evocative piano soundtrack and your own imagination. Beautifully done.

3. Dead Space
Twinkle Twinkle Little Star will never seem the same again. Utterly amazing trailer, packs more tension and atmosphere into a trailer than most games manage in the full release. I'd take my hat to it if I wasn't hiding behind the settee.

2. Dead Island
I don't know if it's due to the fact that I'm a father but this is by far the most emotionally affecting trailer in the list. It has the power to bring an entire room to silence as everyone sits and stares at the unfolding madness on screen. A powerful, hard hitting trailer.

1. Gears of War
An inspired choice of song elevated this trailer for Gears above all else, it set the tone immaculately and was perfectly married to the visuals, whenever I hear the song, that was number 1 for some time, all I see is Gears of War, and for Epic that's mission accomplished.

So there you have it, granted you probably disagree with most of the choices or at least the order in which I've placed them, but that's part of the beauty of gamers, we're all individuals, we know what we like and we definitely know what we don't.

(Photo credit: Matt Brett)


You forgot the Fallout 3 trailer with the vault-tec commercial at the beginning... or the Metro 2033 trailer. Oh well


where's the mass effect 2 launch trailer?

how the hell is mass effect 2 not at the top of this list???

I would add the Deus Ex trailer to that list.

Never liked the Gears trailer though, always thought it was too forced.

u forgot RE5 tgs 08 trailer too ...

Good calls on those trailers you think should have been in the list, all valid. Mass Effect 2 was almost in but in the end I decided to just go with the ones that had left their mark on me, that for whatever reason had remained fresh in my memory.

Really liked the GTA IV trailer, the one where Niko is walking towards you as the backgrounds change and show off the different areas of the city. Great tunes too!
Also, thought the recent Black Ops trailer (using the Rolling Stones) was really great - and encouraged me to pick up the game (which I kinda regret now - damn trailers!)

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