Games journalism is not a popularity contest. It’s about writing the best, most informative content you can. But it’s always fun to see which stories proved the most appealing to our readers. That’s why we created this list of GamesBeat’s 10 most popular stories from 2012.
1. Ocean Marketing: How to self-destruct your company with just a few measly emails. We detailed one of the greatest PR blunders in gaming history. It just doesn’t pay to pick a fight with Penny Arcade. Also, this story was technically published at the very end of 2011, but since it received most of its hits in 2012, we’ll count it. This is the only article that also appeared on 2011′s list.
2. Educational outreach program Pixel Academy looking for a place to call home. Offering workshops on topics like video game design, 3D printing, film making, and app development to children ages 8 to 18, this worthy program turned to crowdfunding to help keep itself afloat. A good cause and a great story.
3. Google Zerg rush attacks your search results with this fun Starcraft-inspired easter egg. The search engine giant paid tribute to the famous real-time strategy game by swarming the computer screen with the famous Google O. It was a pretty simple gag, but the immense popularity of StarCraft helped make this one of our biggest stories ever.
4. Breaking Borderlands 2: Easy money, XP, Eridium, boss fights, and tokens. We tell our readers how to bend the world of Pandora to their wills in this popular guide. People must have found this story useful considering how many of them kept checking it out.
5. Can’t find Franchise/Dynasty mode in Madden NFL 13? Let us explain. I guess a lot of people were having this problem if this was one of our most read stories of the year.
6. Bethesda reveals Skyrim dragon mounts, house-building, Kinect shouts, and more! Developer Bethesda originally showed these ideas during a gaming conference as potential additions to its incredibly popular role-playing game — most of which became a reality in Skyrim’s downloadable content.
7. FYI: PlayStation Network down today at noon PT for planned maintenance. A lot of people were wondering why they couldn’t get online with their PlayStation 3s and PlayStation Vitas.
8. Minecraft (Xbox 360 Edition): Tips, tricks, and achievement guide. Another one of our great game guides. It helps when the title you’re writing about is as complex as Minecraft.
9. The world’s most wanted alleged pirate was also the No. 1 multiplayer player for Modern Warfare 3. You have to admire a guy who can top both an FBI most wanted list and a Call of Duty leaderboard.
10. Survive the real zombie apocalypse in an abandoned UK shopping mall. Zombies are huge in all forms of media right now, including gaming. But what can compete with the chance to fight off “real” zombies with Airsoft guns?