It’s been another year of playing video games, 56 completed to be precise. To make up for the lack of a list last year and the fact I’ve played so many this year, I’ve put together the top ten games I enjoyed over the past year.
We all saw the love that Martin Sahlin had for his creation back during E3 2015, and that’s what made me want to follow this game in the first place. Once I started playing Unravel I got sucked into this little yarn character traversing these different environments; from the warmth of a beautiful spring day in the front yard, to an extremely gloomy trudge through a blizzard, this games shows immense amounts of emotion without needing voices behind it. The puzzles are well put together as you make your way through each level; and the use of the yarn unraveling to show Yarny’s frame is sad, but also has a sweet tone when you find more yarn to replenish him. I highly recommend giving this game a shot.
War is Hell. Battlefield 1 lets you know that right from the get-go. From the trenches to the sky this game takes you everywhere to give a tour of what it was like during The Great War. I loved the way they put the story mode together giving you short stories of different characters playing their parts during the war. The shooting felt good, the planes controlled well, and the parts of the game you could play stealthy worked really well. I’m not a big multiplayer fan but I had a blast when playing with a few friends.
I wasn’t sure what to make of Oxenfree when it came out, but the price was right so I jumped on it and I’m glad I did. Starting off with a party on the beach this game quickly goes weird and you’re dragged in with it. Traveling around the island and finding the other members of your social group is very interesting, and the back stories of each character have a real relationship to their feelings towards Alex. The use of the radio is well done and the crazy supernatural mystery bit to the whole story is exciting and also down right creepy at times. The whole experience is well worth the price asked.
It’s not what you think! This game went places and it still held up for the entire year. Pony Island is about a malevolent force trying to steal your soul through an arcade machine, and the effect Daniel Mullins used worked really well for the machine itself. It is a simplistic runner game that starts to turn quite dark, and the game play changes at a nice pace so you don’t get bored with just doing the same thing repeatedly. All the way up to the end this game is just a lot of fun to play.
The opening of this game hit me personally with all that my wife has gone through over the years. After making it to your tower there is a fantastic interaction between Henry and Delilah throughout the rest of the game. Using the map to navigate to areas made me feel like a Boy Scout again, and the views seen are quite beautiful. I also really enjoyed the whole mystery you unravel. This was just an overall great experience this year.
Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past
This would be my number one if only I had completed it during the year. To start off, Dragon Quest games have always had some of the best soundtracks and this one is no different. It is a turn-based JRPG experience that I haven’t had in quite a while. Not only are the enemies always good in these games, but the variety in attacks, spells, and abilities give a great diversity to ways through the battles. Not only do you level up, the characters can also take on jobs to further their abilities, and mastering different jobs unlock higher tier jobs for you to take on and master as well. My biggest love for this game though is the different stories you discover as you make your way through the game. You’ll meet new interesting characters in each area you go to; but not only that, you’ll also find out the end of these characters legacies in the world. It is one of the best games I have played in a very long time and would love everyone to experience it as well.
SUPERHOT is the most innovative shooter I’ve played in years! The level design of this game is great and you feel like a total bad ass when you watch the replay of something that took you minutes to figure out shown to you in seconds. The whole meta aspect of this game is crazy and I would have been in it completely if I was actually playing in VR. Each level is a ton of fun to plan your path to kill all the enemies, and the last few ramp the difficulty up quite a bit but I was in the mentality of not wanting to quit. This was just too much fun to play.
The Turing Test
This game is on the Portal level of mind blowing. There is a twist in this game that just makes you sit back and think what if. The puzzles are fun to work your brain through and the side puzzles piece even more of the story together and it’s fantastic. There isn’t much to say without spoiling this one so just take my word for it.
The world can be a dark place, and INSIDE is the darkest. There is a WTF moment at the end of this game that doesn’t stop the climax until the very end. Traversing the different areas in this game can be terrifying in the most dismembering ways; you thought the boy from Limbo died in some brutal ways just wait. My anxiety was up at points to let relax for a bit and then right back up there not long after. Truly one of the bests to come out this year.
This jewel unexpectedly became my favorite game of this year. After not having a story Titanfall 2 doubled down and had a well paced and diverse single player campaign that had me on the edge of my seat. The relationship between the pilot and BT is just one of the reasons the story was so good. The environments were incredible and a certain mechanic brought into the game was amazing. The Titan battles were fun in the different areas/arenas and the free running felt extremely smooth. Titanfall 2 redeemed itself in the best way and I’m glad they created this masterpiece.