Best AAA Shooter of 2011

Without a doubt, 2011 was an outstanding year for gaming. We were bombarded with good games this year, which makes picking the best of them even harder. Luckily, we’ve got you, the readers, to help us out.

Every day this week, we’ll be revealing our staff choices for the best games of the year in a variety of categories. We’ll also be reporting the results of our Reader’s Choice voting. So, without further ado, let’s get to the Best AAA Shooters of 2011.

Without question, 2011 was the year of the shooter. All year long, we were bombarded with excellent entries into the genre. The list was so overwhelming that we actually created two lists this year. One for AAA shooter titles and another for smaller releases, just to keep some really deserving games from being excluded. Even with that, the debate raged long into the night before our five finalists in each category were decided.

The nominees were:


Our Picks

5. Crysis 2

Can it run Crysis? A few years ago, that was a pretty important question. With the release of Crysis 2, the answer is generally “Yes,” especially if you have a Playstation 3 or Xbox 360. But that doesn’t mean that Crysis 2 isn’t an absolutely gorgeous addition to this year’s first-person shooter roster. Great graphics make the game stand out, but as always, it’s Crysis 2’s Nanosuit that makes the game really worth playing.

You get all kinds of great superpowers throughout the game, with tons of customization options that make you feel like the ultimate badass as you take down soldiers and aliens across New York City. Crysis 2 gives you plenty of options on tactics and gameplay, both in single-player and multiplayer. And did we mention it looks great? Because it really does.

4. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3

McDonald’s might not provide anything particularly nutritious, but the food is always exactly what you expect it to be, and the experience of stepping into one of their locations is identical to any other. That they occasionally add new items to the menu just guarantees that the old, familiar, deeply unhealthy experience has just enough new stuff to keep things feeling fresh, even if the food, you know, isn’t. That’s always been the case with the Call of duty franchise; always fun, always easy to pick up and always delivering exactly the experience you’re paying for.

That’s never been more true than with the latest release, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. Concluding the Modern Warfare trilogy, MW3 might not reinvent the wheel – it feels like MW 2.5 rather than a true third installment – but it’s a perfect example of giving the fans exactly – and not one thing more – what they want. Hey, when your main concern is killing your friends online in increasingly brutal ways, that’s not such a bad thing at all.

3. Battlefield 3

The successor to Battlefield 2 was instantly vaulted into the spotlight when the first footage from the Frostbite 2 engine was released. The question “Is it real, or is it Battlefield 3?” has never been more relevant. The first core Battlefield game to feature an actual single-player campaign, BF3 offers up an action movie styled story in addition to the multiplayer the series is so famous for. It’s OK, but the multiplayer is where the game really shines.

Enormous, 64 player maps return to the PC alongside the Conquest mode gameplay that the series was built on, and it all works wonderfully. Jets, choppers and tanks are all on full display, bringing the vehicles that so many fans crave back to the game. DICE has patched out a few issues that affected some players, and the initial hate for Battlelog has toned down a fair bit. Now that the dust has settled, BF3 looks to be the choice of a large number of PC shooter fans for the foreseeable future.

Go to Page 2 for the top 2 AAA Shooters and Reader’s Choices!

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6 Comments on Best AAA Shooter of 2011


On December 20, 2011 at 6:01 pm

w8… where is Red orchestra 2?


On December 20, 2011 at 7:57 pm

Resistance is the best single player shooter and probably the most underrated game as well. The story, graphics, atmosphere, pacing is above all. Its like the Uncharted of shooters. You’re along for a great ride but the shooting is way better.


On December 22, 2011 at 11:22 am

Red orchestra 2 was in the non AAA titles

Brandon J. Clark

On December 22, 2011 at 11:55 am

It’s far more important for today’s shooters to have a strong multilayer component. Crowning a winner in this genre based upon the single-player experience is not the best way to go, IMO.

I vote for Battlefield Bad Company 2 as STILL the best shooter because EA and Origin.


On December 22, 2011 at 12:04 pm

*Rips keyboard out of Ron’s hands* Hey Ron I am really happy for you and everything, I am going to let you finish but Battlefield 3 had the best game play features of any of those first person shooters it had the best game play features *gives keyboard back to Ron*

(Reference to Kanye West being an idiot at VMA’s 2009)


On December 22, 2011 at 12:24 pm

what about space marine….the multiplayer and “horde” mode totally blows away gears 3…These are tight maps and waves of enemies…come on when a team of 4 avg. 400+ total kills per level that’s intense. Space Marine may not have the polish in campaign mode…but by the time Gears 3 came around, I had lost interest in their story line anyway. Space Marine should have got a mention and multiplayer should definetely be accounted for b/c campaign is such a small part of the game 6-8 hrs for MW3. These games are all about online.