The Best of Simulations – 2010

Introduction

Although pundits and historians will no doubt mark down 2010 as a year of hard and stagnant economic times, high unemployment and sagging console game sales, the simulation gaming community actually saw the year as a bit of an up-tick in terms of new content. Perhaps driven by a need for developers to stand out from the pack, or because the overall demographic for the sim genre is more impervious to a sagging economy, simulation titles and peripherals emerged in larger numbers than recent years past. Whatever the reason, fans of this hobby enjoyed new releases or the announcement of pending releases in every corner of the genre, be they game software or hardware peripherals. While far from a “boom” year, it was a nice change of pace for a genre that’s often declared death has proven to be thankfully exaggerated.

Best of PCs

PCs are still the preferred home of the rare simulation game title, as this environment above all others offers the most fertile ground for the raw computing power and graphics processing so necessary when making high-fidelity physics calculations and rendering complex shapes. Let’s look at what caught our eye this year, and which products delivered the most enjoyment to our members and the staff.

Aviation & Air Combat

Best Commercial Title
Flaming Cliffs 2.0

Best Commercial Software Update / Add-on / Mod / DLC
Rise of Flight: Iron Cross Edition

Best Non-commercial Software Update / Add-on / Mod / DLC
IL-2 Series – Patch v4.10

Land & Armor Combat

Best Commercial Title
ArmA 2: Operation Arrowhead

Best Commercial Software Update / Add-on / Mod / DLC
ArmA 2: The British Forces

Best Non-commercial Software Update / Add-on / Mod / DLC
GECK for Fallout: New Vegas

Naval

Best Commercial Title
Silent Hunter 5: Battle of the Atlantic

Motorsports

Best Commercial Title
F1 2010

Best Commercial Software Update / Add-on / Mod / DLC
Ferrari Virtual Academy: Mugello

Best Non-commercial Software Update / Add-on / Mod / DLC
RSRBR 2011 (Richard Burns Rally)

Games

Best Commercial Title
Mass Effect 2

Hardware

Hardware Peripheral
Thrustmaster HOTAS Warthog

Data

Best of Consoles

As software coding has improved, so too has the simulation developers’ ability to create sim-worthy titles for the world’s most prolific and profitable gaming platforms. While racing and land combat are currently leading the charge of simulation-level physics into this form of gaming hardware, they are by no means the only aspects of simulation that could, or have, entered the console world. Here’s the console products that best pushed simulation fans’ buttons during 2010.

Aviation & Air Combat

Best Commercial Title
Apache: Air Assault

Land & Armor Combat

Best Commercial Title
Battlefield Bad Company 2

Motorsports

Best Commercial Title
Gran Turismo 5

Games

Best Commercial Title
Red Dead Redemption

Consoles

Best Commercial Software Update / Add-on / Mod / DLC
Battlefield Bad Company 2 – Vietnam

Data

 


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