VAMPIRE THE MASQUERADE: BLOODLINES
The second PC game to be based on White Wolf's role-playing universe, Bloodlines was as blessed by inspiration as it was cursed by circumstance. Rushed out by Activision after developer Troika Games fell behind schedule, it was released in a semi-finished state on the same day as Half Life 2 (with which it shared Valve's Source engine). Despite all that, Bloodlines was 2004's stand-out RPG, featuring an early open world and embracing the essence of what it must feel like to be an urban vampire unleashed on nocturnal LA. After Troika disbanded, the team worked (unpaid) to squash the bugs and the passionate Bloodlines community picked up where they left off. Triumph from adversity for sure, but what could it have achieved with the full support of its publisher?