1. Escaping debt in a constrictive economy
2. Escaping a prison made of lasers
3. The inevitability of death and the hope of reincarnation
4. Resilience in the face of constant adversity
5. Maintaining individuality in an increasingly homogenous society
6. Being in a relationship with a control freak
6. Slipping past tourists who are walking too goddamn slowly
6. Recognizing Satan's insidious grip on your soul
7. Dodging awkward hugs
8. Fitting through a coffee shop's door before it closes so you don't have to touch it
9. Wearing multiple corsets at once
10. Trying to reach a human being on FedEx's customer support line
Whatever you see in Terry Cavanagh's magnetic game, be it pure or pompous, literal or delusional, it's only important that you read between the lines – the ones that are coming to kill you. 2012 was a remarkable year for games, where projects steeped in lore and brought to life with splendid production could sit alongside the likes of Super Hexagon, a challenge that strips the medium down to its cleanest, uncluttered form. Left or right, live as long as you can, then die.
It's tempting to dismiss Super Hexagon as a simple pleasure with no lasting place amongst the stories of 2012, but its debut on iPhone cemented its presence in modern gaming. It's pinch-to-zoom applied to game design. On this micro level you learn the rules, you interpret the visual symbols and you react reflexively, trying to hold on as neon colors, increasing speed and a wobbling 3D plane attempt to throw you off.
Now, when I play Super Hexagon, all I can see in the geometric kaleidoscope is an ominous symbol for radiation. Some guy will have a few seconds to push the button and shoot down the nuclear missiles raining down on us, but he'll be too busy playing this stupid game. So:
11. Failing to stop the apocalypse.
Joystiq is revealing its 10 favorite games of 2012 throughout the week. Keep reading for more top selections and every writer's personal picks in Best of the Rest roundups. The list so far: