In this age of better graphics, larger worlds, and longer campaigns, the game industry has lost some of what originally made the games awesome, fun. The most important thing in any game is its ability to draw the users attention and entertain them. Some of my favorite games of all time are from the N64 days when the games had sucky graphics lame voice-overs.
What makes a game fun? I have no idea, I just know when I find it. It must be that je ne sais quoi, that intangible part of a game that gets under your skin and makes you laugh at the pure silliness of it all. I think some game studios have gotten away from producing purely fun games to making it a pissing contest over graphics and realisticness (so I made up a word sue me).
My point with all of this is that sometimes the graphics and gameplay don't really matter in making a great game. One of my favorite games of all time remains Warlords. Play that game with four friends while talking a lot of trash and you can have some of the best times, and the controls amount to three buttons, Left, Right, and Hold. Sometimes it's just about hitting three buttons and getting up in a friends face about it that makes for a good game.