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GOTY 2014

Honorable mentions include Danganronpa 2, Monument Valley, and South Park: The Stick of Truth.

List items

  • I played The Binding of Isaac and beat Mom once. I'm still playing Rebirth and plan to get Mom kill #8 soon. Perhaps it's the meaningful added content (there's a whole lot of new stuff), but Rebirth has its hooks in me like few games this year.

  • amlabella's local multiplayer renaissance award goes to: TowerFall Ascension. A deceptively simple archery game which slowly reveals layers of complexity and provides hours of fun with family/friends.

  • Transistor lacks the emotional impact of Bastion, but the art style, soundtrack, and combat system are all top notch. I even felt compelled to get the platinum trophy. I never get platinum trophies.

  • Dark Souls II fails to live up to its predecessor, but I still had a great time with the game. It presents a distinctive world with plenty of challenge and the thrill of victory. Sounds like a Souls game to me.

  • The team behind Serious Sam does a 180 and delivers a fantastic Portal-esque puzzle game with a deeply philosophical and mysterious narrative. One of the best surprises of the year.

  • A love letter to the 8-bit era that targets nostalgia and still feel fresh and modern throughout. Also, a knight that uses a shovel as his weapon of choice is just plain badass... and kind of cute.

  • Over-the-top action: great. A combat system that places the emphasis on dodging: great. Perhaps the worst character of 2014 in Loki: not so great. The first two make up for the latter.

  • A great cast of characters and a large, sprawling world. No other game in 2014 matches its size and scope. Kudos to BioWare for bouncing back from the disappointing Dragon Age II. 60+ hours well spent.

  • I wasn't familiar with the Fables series prior to The Wolf Among Us, but I love the premise. Telltale does a great job with characters both old and new, and despite some missteps in the first season, it managed to hold my interest in all five episodes.

  • This is the one Assassin's Creed game to play in 2014. It's hard to ignore the similarities in structure, but the more visceral combat and standout nemesis system set it apart from other open-world games.