God of War
Let me start by saying this is one of the most complete and well-developed games I've seen. God of War is set in Greek mythology, and as you might expect the gods are not getting along. Ares has decided to destroy Athens and, well, Athena is not too happy. However, the gods are forbidden to wage war against each other so the battle must be fought in the mortal realm. Hence Kratos, a general that sold his soul to Ares years ago and is now being summoned by Athena and the other gods to put and end to Ares once and for all.
Usually action games lose me well before the end. Run around, attack enemies, solve simple puzzles, advance story. God of War breaks that stereotype right out of the gates. Somehow God of War manages to cover all its bases and then some. It's remarkable how smooth the game is from start to finish and I've got to admit, it's been well into morning before I turned the game off many times. There always seems to be a reason to keep playing. Either you'll find yourself pushing the story along in anticipation for the next scene or battling for the next weapon upgrade.
It's the combat system that holds God of War together and drives the experience however. Not only is the control system comfortable, easy to use, and intuitive, but battling enemies is actually enjoyable. Heck, the more the better. There are numerous different weapons and magic attacks to use with many picked up along the way. All can be upgraded to include for more powerful attacks and new moves.
God of War doesn't slow down when it comes to the graphics or audio either. The physics engine adds an extra sense of realism, the environments are rich and detailed, and there are abundant enemies to keep things interesting. It's the cut scenes that move the plot along and their quality is remarkable. The audio has its place as well creating a rich experience that helps to immerse into the game.
Without a doubt, one of the best games I can remember. Keep in mind that it worked hard to earn the Mature rating so and may have even pushed those limits. But if that's not an issue, God of War is not something to miss.